Victoria – Butchart Gardens and Floatplane

Victoria – Butchart Gardens

Butchart Gardens covers more than 55 acres and began when Jennie Butchart beautified the worked-out limestone quarry, which had supplied her husband Robert Pim Butchart’s Portland cement plant. The gardens are over 100 years old and made up of Sunken, Japanese, Rose and Italian gardens.

We left the hotel at 7.15am for a 30 minute drive to the gardens, where we were warmly greeted and taken to the Dining Room, which is part of the original family house, for a delicious breakfast.  Firstly we had fresh fruit with yoghurt dressing and then Richard had West Coast Eggs Benedict made with Vancouver Island farm eggs sitting on home made hash browns; and Sandy had Home Made brioche French Toast with Canadian maple syrup, pecans and sautéed pears – Sandy expected normal toast size and actually was given a round three inch high cake-like delicacy.

Then it was time to explore these magnificent gardens – our words and our photos will not be able to do this amazing place justice.  Because we were there before the gardens were open to the general public, we were able to see a large area of the gardens without other tourists.

The weather for this morning was forecast to rain but we were lucky that it stayed fine, although it was overcast, which meant that the colours of the flowers in the photos were not as vibrant as we saw them.

Our first stop was the hanging baskets and then we wandered through the Sunken Garden, which included a lovely fountain in a small lake.  From there we enjoyed the Japanese Gardens and Butchart Cove, as well as the Star Pond and the Italian Garden.  The variety of flowers, plants, shrubs and trees were too many to list and the colours were like we had never seen before.  We could have spent many hours wandering through these lush, colourful gardens!

Richard was in his element in the azalea gardens and would love to be able to grown some of these colours at home.

After an absolutely wonderful morning, we returned to our hotel via the scenic route.

 

Victoria – Floatplane

Our wonderful day continued with a Victoria Panorama tour in a Harbour Air DeHavilland DHC-3 Turbine Single Otter Floatplane this afternoon!   We took to the skies at 2.30pm for our adventure, which was even better than we thought it would be.  We flew out of the Inner Harbour, past the Canadian Forces Maritime Base, over Downtown Victoria, over Mount Douglas, Elk Lake and the Butchart Gardens where we were able to see how large the gardens are from the air.

Before we took off, Sandy had asked about the Trial Island Lighthouse, but the pilot said that it wasn’t on this itinerary.  However, our pilot decided that he would take us for a quick look and while we were there, he noticed that just off the coast were several whales, so he circled a couple times so that everyone on board could see them.

As we touched down in the Inner Harbour, it started to spit with rain but we didn’t mind at all because wile we were in the air the weather was fine and clear and we could see everything.

It is really great when these sorts of tours actually surpass your expectations!!

So, all in all, we have had an absolutely wonderful day in Victoria!

All our photos since we left home are in the gallery.


4 Responses to “Victoria – Butchart Gardens and Floatplane”

  1. Janet says:

    Wow the Gardens look stunning! Beautiful photos Dad. IMG_7099 looks like a giant piece of broccoli! lol Can’t wait to see more photos 🙂

  2. Selle-Belle says:

    WOW!!! I’m loving the photo’s & the stories…I feel like I’m travelling every step with you! I really love the gardens, so colourful & pretty! As usual Richard, your photo’s are amazing!!!
    Keep the info coming & enjoy!!! 🙂
    Lots of lv & friendship,
    Shell-Belle xo

  3. Patrick says:

    I like the photo of the polar bear and the otter. Have fun, love your favourite grandson 🙂

  4. Maria says:

    Hi Sis and Richard – delighted to see you are having a wonderful time – the photos are magnificent and I feel as though I am travelling along with you reading all about each exciting fun packed day – keep enjoying every single minute, lots of love Maria and Dennis xoxo

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