Sunday, June 25, 2017

Last Day in Victoria B.C.

My last day and night in Victoria was also my birthday! I celebrated my 61st birthday and Canada's 150th anniversary by using my free pass (generously given to any Canadian who applied) to visit a couple of national historic sites. Here I am trying my best to take a selfie with the sign for Canada's 150th in the background. My arms aren't nearly long enough!

I was visiting Fort Rodd Hill and the Fisgard Lighthouse - both national historic sites. Instead of going into great detail about Canada's first west coast fort I will razzle dazzle you with gratuitous mountain and water views from various locations within the park.  Perhaps I'll throw in a photo of a bird or two :)
Most of the time the mountains were shrouded in mist and clouds so I was happy to finally get a relatively clear photo!
People taking advantage of low tide to walk their dogs and no doubt do a bit of beach combing.

Away off in the distance is the lighthouse. Oh, and there's a bird flying through the shot!
One of the many things I loved about the island was the pairs of red adirondack chairs so people could relax while drinking in the view. I sat in at least three sets of these chairs, 2 on this site and 1 in Ucluelet.

I took advantage of the hiking trails within the park and they were lovely though definitely not challenging.

This location is home to the gorgeously twisted Garry oak trees, the only truly indigenous oak tree on the west coast and which thrives in the rainforest eco system. The Garry oaks also have their own eco system which was shown in a large garden full of wild flowers developed for educational purposes. I walked through these gardens and the aromas were almost overwhelming! In a good way!

I walked and I walked and reached the very picturesque Fisgard Lighthouse, now a museum.

A heron enjoying her lunch.

In the huge rock formations beside the lighthouse I spied a couple of red chairs so clambered over the rocks til I reached them - it seemed like the perfect spot for a snack:)

The view wasn't half bad either!

This cute lil fella sang his little heart out:) - a song sparrow?

 From here I made my way to the campus of Royal Roads University where my friend, Troy, now works. They are renowned for their amazing gardens, peacocks and a castle!

Here's Hately Castle - once upon a time a residence of James Dunsmuir (and family) who was a wealthy mine owner and eventually Lieutenant-Governor of Canada.

Wisteria growing madly in the Italian gardens.

One of the many water features in the extensive Japanese gardens.

After Troy and I met up we headed to downtown Victoria as she hadn't really had time to explore yet. We checked out the parliament buildings and the Empress Hotel seeing some unique sculptural pieces while wandering around. An orca mom and baby...

Ummmm....a green shoe...

And my favourite spot - Fisherman's Wharf! It's a working wharf for fishing boats but also a very colourful place to live year round in one of 33 "floating houses", some of which are businesses and restaurants. I had seared tuna for the first time and a couple glasses of chardonnay - yes, the area next to the restaurant was licensed!

The sun setting between 2 floathouses...

seems like I'm spelling it wrong :)

The float houses really captured my interest and if I can quickly come up with around a million$$ there's one for sale!

Yuck yuck!
I miss you my dear!

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