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Butchart Gardens

Butchart Gardens: Our most recommended tours and activities

Vancouver: Victoria, Gulf Islands Cruise, & Butchart Gardens

1. Vancouver: Victoria, Gulf Islands Cruise, & Butchart Gardens

Experience the Pacific Coast and Vancouver Island by land and ship on a guided day trip from Vancouver with hotel transfers included. View the British Columbia coastline from a sightseeing cruise, followed by a stop at Butchart Gardens en route to the British-inspired city of Victoria. Board a BC Ferries vessel at Tsawwassen terminal for a 90-minute sail through the serene beauty of the Gulf Islands. On the way, look out for marine wildlife from the outdoor ship decks, especially eagles, sea lions, and whales. Arrive at Swartz Bay terminal on Vancouver Island and continue to the enchanting botanical paradise of Butchart Gardens. Wander through a series of themed gardens, highlighted by the massive Sunken Garden complete with a dancing fountain. Marvel at the architectural wonders of the city of Victoria boasts, including the iconic Parliament Buildings and the waterfront Fairmont Empress Hotel. Visit the shops and cafes of Government Street and Chinatown. Stroll along the Inner Harbour for prime ocean views, and enjoy some free time to take in this culturally significant city. Return on the bus to Vancouver by ferry to conclude this diverse tour.

Vancouver to Victoria and Butchart Gardens

2. Vancouver to Victoria and Butchart Gardens

Visit Victoria, British Columbia’s capital city, on this full-day guided tour from Vancouver city. Try to spot marine life on the ferry to Vancouver island, walk among the flowers in the Butchart Gardens, and admire the Victorian architecture in Victoria.  Start from downtown Vancouver and travel south through the city aboard a climate-controlled bus. Hop aboard a BC Ferry for a 90-minute voyage across the Georgia Strait through the scenic Southern Gulf Islands. Keep an eye out for orcas along the way. Once docked on Vancouver Island, the tour continues to the world-famous Butchart Gardens, a National Historic Site of Canada. See millions of bedding plants in over 900 varieties. Enjoy 2 leisurely hours to fully explore the 50 acres of stunning gardens. Head to downtown Victoria and pass through Canada’s oldest China Town and the scenic Victoria Harbor, including the Inner Harbor. Once downtown, you will have free time to explore the local area. Spend your time going for a stroll the Inner Harbor, taking in the thriving arts and cultural scene, or visiting the historic Empress Hotel or the Royal BC Museum. Take the ferry and bus to return to your meeting point in Vancouver. 

From Vancouver: Butchart Gardens & Victoria Sightseeing Tour

3. From Vancouver: Butchart Gardens & Victoria Sightseeing Tour

Discover Victoria, the capital of British Columbia on a guided tour from Vancouver. See the Empress Hotel, the Parliament buildings and beautiful Butchart Gardens. Upon leaving Vancouver, take a scenic ferry ride from the mainland through the Gulf Islands to Swartz Bay on Vancouver Island. From here, you will embark on a driving tour to Victoria. Upon arriving in downtown Victoria, join a driving tour and discover Victoria’s downtown area featuring the the Inner Harbour, The Fairmont Empress Hotel, Mile 0, and historic Chinatown. Enjoy some free time to explore downtown Victoria at your own pace. Next, visit the internationally renowned Butchart Gardens. This National Historic Site began with an exhausted limestone quarry that was transformed into the now picturesque Sunken Garden. Explore 55 acres of themed garden displays, including a Japanese Garden, Italian Garden and Rose Garden. Wind down your day with the scenic return sailing trip aboard BC Ferries, and then back to where your tour began.

Full-Day Victoria and Butchart Gardens Tour from Vancouver

4. Full-Day Victoria and Butchart Gardens Tour from Vancouver

Enjoy an exciting full-day tour in Victoria that's packed with activities. Your day will start with a ride on board a minibus in Vancouver that will take you to the ferry terminal in Tsawwassen. You will then be driven onto a ferry with onboard amenities including a restaurant, gift shop, and arcades for the children. Walk around the deck while enjoying the scenery and look out for orcas, seals, and other marine life. Then dock in the port of Swartz Bay on Vancouver Island and tour the heart of Victoria. The area grew from the Gold Rush in 1841 and still displays many traditional buildings from the period by renowned Canadian architect, Francis Rattenbury. Once your guided tour is complete, enjoy 3 hours to explore the city at your own pace. Meet up and proceed to the magnificent Butchart Gardens, an area that stretches across 55 acres. Stroll through the charming gardens and admire its mix of traditional and modern landscapes.

Victoria Day Trip by Seaplane from Vancouver

5. Victoria Day Trip by Seaplane from Vancouver

On this full-day excursion you’ll depart Vancouver Harbor by seaplane for an exciting flight over the Gulf Islands to beautiful Victoria. After you arrive in Victoria you’ll enjoy a coach tour that take you to the famous Butchart Gardens. In Victoria the shops, a museum, and several other attractions are just steps away. You’ll return to Vancouver by seaplane on a scheduled afternoon flight of your choice. With more than 50 aircraft, Harbour Air and Westcoast Air operate the largest all-seaplane fleet in the world. DeHavilland DHC-3 Turbine Single Otters and Twin Otters service regularly scheduled flights between the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island. DHC-2 Beavers service the Gulf Islands. Cessna 185 aircraft are available for charter.

From Seattle: Ferry Day Trip from Seattle to Victoria

6. From Seattle: Ferry Day Trip from Seattle to Victoria

Board a high speed catamaran and enjoy a scenic cruise through the Salish Sea to Victoria, and explore the best Victoria has to offer, from historic buildings to beautiful gardens on this day tour. Hop on board the boat in Seattle and get ready for the perfect day trip to Victoria. Settle in and find yourself a comfortable seat by a window. Enjoy a short and scenic cruise through the Salish Sea, and admire the beautiful scenery along the way. Arrive in Victoria and enjoy five hours to explore the city however you wish. Browse unique shops, sample artisanal delicacies, or visit the flower-filled Butchart Gardens. Explore Victoria with the freedom to choose your own stops, before heading to the Victoria Clipper Terminal in the heart of the city to return to Seattle. Board the boat and venture North through Puget Sound to take in the majesty of the Pacific Northwest.

Victoria & Butchard Gardens Private Tour from Vancouver

7. Victoria & Butchard Gardens Private Tour from Vancouver

Enjoy complimentary pick-up from your hotel in Vancouver. At Tsawwassen, board the ferry and enjoy a spectacular 1.5-hour ferry ride through the Gulf Islands. Lookout for whales, dolphins, and sea lions. Be enchanted by the beautiful islands, and enjoy feeling the wind in your face on the top deck.  Make your first stop at Butchard Gardens, where you will be wowed by this oasis of lush green and colorful blooms, stretching for 55 acres of flowers, trees, pathways, and creeks. The garden features a sunken garden, a world-famous rose garden, and a wonderful restaurant serving high tea daily.  Take a scenic tour by the ocean en route to the city center of Victoria. Drive by the University of Victoria, Oak Bay, the Uplands, Beacon Hill Park, and finally Downtown Victoria with its BC Parliament Building, Empress Hotel, Chinatown, and Craigdarroch Castle. Have lunch or a small bite, at your leisure. Later in the evening head back to Vancouver where you'll be dropped at your hotel.

Vancouver: Private Victoria and Butchart Gardens Ferry Tour

8. Vancouver: Private Victoria and Butchart Gardens Ferry Tour

Enjoy a private cruise from Vancouver to Victoria and marvel at the stunning scenery and calm sea. Sail across the Strait of Georgia and travel through the breathtaking Gulf Islands. See local marine wildlife and the iconic lighthouse.  Start your adventure with a pickup from your hotel. Jump in the car, take your seat and relax as you head to the port.  Onboard the ferry at the port in Vancouver, sit back, relax and enjoy the calming effect of the sea. Make sure you have your camera as you don't want to miss out on photo opportunities of the epic views as you sail. First, stop at the Butchart Gardens to see an array of over 900 colorful flowers and plants. Stroll around the gardens at your leisure and enjoy a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants.  Next, head to downtown Victoria to see the British Columbia Legislature Buildings, the chateau-style Fairmont Empress Hotel, Beacon Hill Park, and many more sights.  End your tour by returning to Vancouver via ferry and get a convenient return transfer back to your hotel. 

Victoria and Butchart Gardens by Seaplane

9. Victoria and Butchart Gardens by Seaplane

Combine adventure and culture on this unique day trip to Victoria and the famous Butchart Gardens. Leaving from Vancouver in the morning, you will be picked-up from your hotel and taken for a thrilling journey in a seaplane over the fascinating islands of the Canadian Pacific coast. Land in Victoria city center at around 9:00 AM, giving you plenty of your own time to stroll the streets and admire the quirky English style. Depends on your choice of shuttle time, you'll be driven to the world-famous Butchart Gardens by a scheduled shuttle bus. Once there, you'll have about 2 hours to admire the flowers and other plant life in these impressive gardens. An excellent live commentary will be performed on the bus by a guide driver. Travel back to Vancouver in a comfortable, take a seaplane departs at 5 or 6 PM. Arrive back at your hotel in Vancouver at around 6 or 7 PM.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Butchart Gardens

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What people are saying about Butchart Gardens

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 620 reviews

Brent was an excellent guide for our day and we appreciated the history of the region he shared. Would recommend Land and Sea to others wholeheartedly!

Was a great trip. Loved the ferry ride. All instructions on where to be and when were very clear. Butchart Gardens was well worth the trip

Great experience! The tour guide Zac was great, very knowledgeable and couldn’t do enough for the group.

Great trip, friendly and knowledgable guide and very enjoyable day.

Casey, our guide was great! Sights were beautiful!