A Historical Tour of Downtown Victoria

Founded in 1843, Victoria contains a large amount of history that can be seen just walking the streets of downtown. We’ve compiled a list of historical and cultural landmarks to see and activities to do when you step out from your suite at the Regent.

  • The Parliament buildings are striking to look at and date all the way back to 1864. Spread out on the green space in front with a picnic and take in the harbour’s coming and going.
  • Fan Tan Alley is the narrowest street in the country and lined with local shops. It also leads to Chinatown.
  • Victoria’s Chinatown is the oldest in Canada. Though it may be small, when you pass through the arches you’ll be met with Chinese markets, restaurants and shops.
  • The Maritime Museum features 35,000 artefacts that are historically significant to BC dating all the way back to 1775.
  • The Royal BC Museum has different historical exhibitions from our First Nations history to how our landscape once looked with animals such as the wooly mammoth. The feature exhibition opening May 18 is Egypt: The Time of the Pharaohs.
  • The Victoria Art Gallery features works by the famous (and local) Emily Carr, an Asian collection, and feature exhibitions such as First Nations prints.
  • As you walk down the streets be sure to look up: many of the buildings are historical and have their establishment dates on display near the top. Bastion Square has old cobble stone, and with a keen eye you can find a brick outline in downtown’s core marking the fort that was Victoria’s initial settlement!

Our central location makes exploring Victoria easy. If you’d like any walking instructions or tips, be sure to ask our friendly concierge—we’d love to help.