In the South point of the island of Vancouver, Victoria has a pleasant weather and sun, and the green hills display wonderful colorful gardens. Its port is a natural refuge, beautiful, at the bottom of The Empress Hotel. The Greater Victoria region covers the extreme southern end of Vancouver Island, including the Saanich Peninsula, Victoria, Esquimalt, Colwood, Metchosin, and Sooke, with almost half of Vancouver Island's population of 750,000 living within the Capital Regional District (CRD) around Victoria. There is a rich diversity of landscapes within the cool Mediterranean climate of the region, ranging from the Douglas fir forests along the coast to the drier, exposed conditions of the higher, rockier elevations, which support arbutus (madrona) and Garry oak forests. As you'd imagine in a region where a large urban population interacts with such a delightful natural tableau, a vast network of walking, hiking, and biking routes leads through the many parks with which the city is blessed.
Text: Patrick Monney ± Photo: Patrick Monney