Where is Victoria and Southern Vancouver Island on map with highway

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Map of Victoria and Southern Vancouver Island. Detailed map of the highway and roads of Victoria city and Southern Vancouver Island

Southern Vancouver Island

Set in a necklace of smaller islands and anchored by the city of Victoria, southern Vancouver Island has the wonderful combination of a mild climate, diverse landscapes, rich cultures, well-preserved history, and a unique charm that prompted Capt. George Vancouver to call it "the most lovely country that can be imagined." The rain forests and rugged fjords of the West Coast are separated from the drier, gentler terrain of the East Coast by a backbone of snow-packed mountains. Such contrasting scenery makes "The Island," as it is affectionately known locally, so appealing.

Chemainus [B7] When the local sawmill closed in 1983, Chemainus shifted gears from logging to tourism, commissioning an outdoor mural to celebrate the town's past. Now some 30 larger-than-life, historically themed murals grace the walls of downtown buildings, drawing about 400,000 people annually.

Duncan [C7] Follow the trail of footprints painted on downtown sidewalks to view more than 40 stunning totem poles, the work of Native carvers, or visit the B.C. Forest Museum for a look at logging of days gone by, including a sawmill and working steam locomotive.

Nanaimo [A6] Once a major coal-mining center, today Nanaimo is a deep-sea fishing port and jumping-off point for the mainland and offshore oases like Gabriola Island. Nanai-mo's beginnings are saluted at The Bastion, built in 1853 and the Hudson's Bay Company's oldest fort. The 4 km Harbourfront Walkway, with its colorful boats, shops, and cafes, is a great spot to arrange for a sightseeing cruise to glimpse whales and sea lions. Every July Nanaimo hosts the popular International Bathtub Race.

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve [B1-D3]

This reserve extends 105 km and comprises three distinct regions with different entry points on Vancouver's magnificent West Coast: Long Beach, popular with surfers and beachcombers; the Broken Group Islands, a mecca for kayakers; and the West Coast Trail, a challenging trail for experienced hikers. From sandy beaches to peaceful estuaries, rugged headlands to thick rain forests, the landscape here has numerous contrasts. Each spring the reserve becomes a major stopping place for waterfowl, and thousands of gray whales migrate through the reserve's waters.

Ucluelet [B1] Named for a First Nations word that means "safe harbor," Ucluelet is a good base for short, easy hikes to many spectacular seascapes. The Wild Pacific Trail winds through the rain forest and around a storm-swept headland past Amphitrite Point Lighthouse.

Victoria [E8] The capital of British Columbia retains a well-mannered British heritage, embodied in its Tallyho carriages, double-deck buses, high tea served in the Empress Hotel, and immaculate English gardens. Modern Victoria preserves its past in its museums, wonderfully restored architecture and mansions. Walk the waterfront or take the ferry across the Inner Harbour to see many of Victoria's famous downtown attractions. In Thunderbird Park, you'll find outstanding totem poles; in summer carvers often work in the park. (9 No visit to Victoria is complete without a stop at Butchart Gardens. This 20-hectare lush landscape of themed gardens was created in 1904 from a limestone quarry.



Butchart Gardens Beacon Hill Park Thunderbird Park Empress Hotel Inner Harbour Parliament Buildings Royal London Wax Museum

Old Town Bastion Square Art Gallery of Greater Victoria Royal British Columbia Museum Maritime Museum of British Columbia Chinatown and Fan Tan Alley Craigdarroch Castle

(1889) Craigflower Manor (1853) Sealand of the Pacific Crystal Garden Munro's Bookstore Classic Car Museum Victoria Bug Zoo


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Map of Victoria and Southern Vancouver Island. Detailed map of the highway and roads of Victoria city and Southern Vancouver Island