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Fairmont Empress Hotel

Fairmont Empress Hotel: Our most recommended tours and activities

Victoria: Half-Day Hop-On-Hop-Off Sightseeing Bus Tour

1. Victoria: Half-Day Hop-On-Hop-Off Sightseeing Bus Tour

Experience Victoria in a unique way on board an open-top double-decker bus. Depart from right outside the iconic Fairmont Empress Hotel then set off on a hop-on-hop-off tour to explore this charming city. From China Town to Oak Bay there is something for everyone.  As you ride the bus, listen to the fully narrated tour and gain an in-depth understanding of Victoria's local history and best attractions. Feel free to hop-off the bus at 15 different stop destinations - giving you an array of options to explore the city further.  Stops include Empress Hotel, Chinatown (Old Town), Bastion Square, Steamship Terminal, Fisherman's Wharf, Ogdeon Point (Breakwater), Beacon Hill Park, Mile 0 / Terry Fox, Christ Church Cathedral, Craigdarroch Castle, Oak Bay Municipal Hall, Oak Bay Marina, Oak Bay Hotel, Cook Street Village, and Chateau Victoria / Marriot / Dbl Tree.

From Vancouver: Butchart Gardens & Victoria Sightseeing Tour

2. From Vancouver: Butchart Gardens & Victoria Sightseeing Tour

Meet in central Vancouver and take a 90-minute scenic cruise aboard the ferry to Vancouver Island. Sail through the Strait of Georgia and enjoy the scenery. Be sure to visit the outside decks as it’s not uncommon to see all kinds of sea life, including porpoises and whales. Arrive on Vancouver Island and first visit the beautiful Butchart Gardens. Explore this world-renowned botanical garden which was once a quarry, featuring the Japanese Garden, the Ross Fountain, an Italian Garden, and other floral displays. Continue the trip with a ferry ride to the city of Victoria’s Inner Harbour. Discover the main sights of Victoria with your guide, starting at Mile O. See Ogden Point, Fisherman’s Wharf, Empress Hotel, and historic Chinatown, including the famous Fan Tan Alley. Later, enjoy some free time to explore on your own or book an additional optional activity. Your guide will be on hand to assist you with suggestions on the best restaurants, breweries, shops, and hidden gems. Relax as you cruise back to the mainland in the evening, arriving back in Vancouver at approximately 9:30 PM.

Victoria and Butchart Gardens Christmas Tour

3. Victoria and Butchart Gardens Christmas Tour

Benefit from pick-up at your hotel in downtown Vancover, and then board the boat at the Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal to take a scenic 1.5-hour cruise around the Gulf Islands. Look for marine wildlife on the outdoor deck as you make your way to Schwartz Bay on Vancouver Island. Drop anchor to explore the provincial capital of British Columbia. Get a short introduction to Victoria and enjoy some free time to look inside the unique shops of Government Street and Chinatown. Stroll along the Inner Harbour and get amazing ocean views. Take souvenir photos of the festive decorations of the Victoria Parliament Building and Fairmont Empress Hotel. Continue to the botanical paradise of Butchart Gardens and wander through a series of themed gardens to see the Christmas lights and holiday wreaths. Hear carols being sung and much more to experience the Magic of Christmas. Return to Schwartz Bay for the bus and ferry journey back to Vancouver.

Victoria Harbor: Smartphone Audio Walking Tour with Trivia

4. Victoria Harbor: Smartphone Audio Walking Tour with Trivia

Begin in the heart of Victoria's Chinatown where you can check out Fan Tan Alley before making your way through the colorful and historic downtown center. Listen to information about some of Victoria's heritage buildings in the Market Square. Check out some unique architectural features like Waddington Alley and the Johnson Street Bridge. Stop for a bite at Murchie's Tea & Coffee, Garrick's Head Saloon, or Rogers Chocolates before heading to the beautiful inner harbor. Stroll along the water while you marvel at sites like the Grand Empress Hotel, the Royal BC Museum, the Parliament Buildings, and the Steamship Terminal. Walk David Foster Pathway and listen to the facinating commentary. Explore Thunderbird Park and Songhees Point and hear about the different people and creatures that call Victoria their home. Visit as many sights and attractions as you like at your own pace. Save your data with an offline tour.

Other Sightseeing Options in Fairmont Empress Hotel

Want to discover all there is to do in Fairmont Empress Hotel? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Fairmont Empress Hotel

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 198 reviews

Very pleasant travel, we had a great time and our guide make us smile all the time. Definitely recommended. I travel with a 3 yrs old boy and they offered a special sit and took care of all our needs.

Amazing Victoria Island Tour! Ian made it really pleasant! If you are doing this tour be eager during the ferry, we could spot a pod of Killer Whales!

Wonderful experience, very well organized, Randie is an amazing tour guide, so knowledgeable, and very personable. We had an awesome day in Victoria!

David and Omar were great! Omar was funny, informative and made the trip enjoyable!

Our driver Ian was terrific. We had a great trip. Good value for the money.