The most photographed attraction on Vancouver Island, the Empress Hotel is famous for its afternoon teas, elegant affairs that attract 75,000 visitors each year. What better time for your kids to show off their very proper manners?

Family Vacations in Canada: Victoria and Vancouver Island

Most visitors travel to the friendly capital of British Columbia, Canada, by ferry, and as they approach the town they see its beautiful Inner Harbour and the peaked roofline of the famous Empress Hotel. After leaving the ferry you may enjoy a spot of tea at the grand old Empress, where the dance scenes for the 1994 movie Little Women were filmed. The menu features tiny tea sandwiches, scones with fresh Jersey cream, ripe strawberries, and miniature pastries.

Victoria is also famous for its Butchart Gardens, 55 acres of internationally acclaimed botanical gardens. A favorite section for children is the Sunken Garden, where they descend a set of stairs into a valley of blooming flowers. On summer evenings, the gardens are alive with music, and their beauty is enhanced by the dramatic lighting that bathes each section.

Bicycling around the island is a popular family pastime and an ideal way to take in its many sights. During your excursion, stop at Miniature World, where younger children will enjoy the tiny landscapes. The British Columbia Museum has many fascinating exhibits and houses a world-renowned collection of totem poles carved by native peoples.

Victoria and Vancouver Island Information

Canadian Tourism Commission

Suite 1400, Four Bentall Centre

1055 Dunsmuir St./Box 49230

Vancouver, BC V5P 1L2 Canada

Telephone: 604-638-8300

Canda's third largest city, Vancouver, offers urbane thrills, but it's also surrounded by parks and recreation areas. Keep reading to learn about family vacations to Vancouver.

To learn more about family vacation destinations, see:
  • Family Vacations: Learn about hundreds of family vacations in destinations all over North America.
  • Vancouver City Guide: Learn about Vancouver, a beautiful city nestled between oceans, mountains, and a mighty river.
  • Scenic Drives: For those who think getting there is half the fun, we have compiled more than 100 of the most scenic drives throughout the United States.