Photo Ops Vancouver Island

Photo Ops Vancouver Island

  • Posted: May 30, 2018
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Photo Ops on Vancouver Island & the Gulf Islands

This photo ops Blog will grow as time permits. I will accept great photos from anyone and give credit where it has been identified. This is intended to be a resource for visitors and tourists who come to our Island and would like to explore and find many of these gems for themselves. So if you are inclined, send in your photo ops! For me it is all about sharing what we have with our island guests. Come back often to watch it grow.

Gold River
The Upana Caves are located 17 km northwest of Gold River on the Head Bay Forest Road (to Tahsis). Driving time is 25 minutes. Vancouver Island has the largest concentration of caves in North America

Great Cave area

Gold River

Port Renfrew
Fairy Lake Hemlock
This tiny hemlock tree which is over 30 years old is growing from a deadhead log in Fairy Lake which is not far outside of Port Renfrew. Port Renfrew is roughly 2 hours west of Victoria. As it does not get the resources it needs to grow it remains small. It is likely one of the most photographed trees on Vancouver Island.

Hemlock tree growing on sunken log

Hemlock tree growing on sunken log

Botanical Beach
Located just a few kilometers from Port Renfrew, this beach is one of my second favourite place on Vancouver Island. It is quite mystical. You can look over Juan de Fuca Strait and see the last bit of land before the open ocean, or watch whales swim by in search of food, or explore the amazing tide pools (low spring tides expose a shelf of the ocean to explore), or the beautiful rock formations along the shoreline….pic ops everywhere you turn! I love watching the waves crash on the shoreline (but be careful you don’t get to close.

Botanical Beach near Port Renfrew

Botanical Beach near Port Renfrew

 

The San Juan Spruce – Port Renfrew Area

San Juan Spruce

The Harris Creek Fir – on highway from Poet Renfrew to Duncan (below)

Harris Creek Fir

Harris Creek Fir

Living Dead Tree

The Living Dead Tree in Port Renfrew on the Road to Soule Creek Lodge

Sooke
Not far from Sooke is a wonderful beach called Sandcut. It generally is very quiet and does not have very many visitors. One of the unique features is a waterfall that spills out onto the beach. It is a short but arduous 10 minute walk from the road to the beach.

Chemainus
Chemainus, the “Little Town That Did” converted a mill town into a tourist destination by covering the sides of buildings with cool murals. This is probably the most famous mural in the town as it is quite dramatic.

Chemainus Mural

Chemainus Mural

Victoria
Beacon Hill Park is the crown jewel of the City of Victoria. This waterfront park just north of Dallas Road has a lot of great photo opportunities. Some of them are the Mile Zero sign, The Terry Fox memorial, Goodacre Lake, and the giant, ancient sequoia tree across the street from the Beacon Hill Children’s Farm.

Giant Sequoia

Giant Sequoia

Goodacre Lake

Goodacre Lake

Turtles Sunning in the Park

Turtles Sunning in the Park in Goodacre Lake

Mount Baker provides Victoria with a magnificent eastern backdrop which is best viewed from Cattle Point in the Uplands district of Oak Bay Municipality in Greater Victoria.
The Royal British Columbia Museum has many picture opportunities and you can take all the pictures you want indoors as long as you do not use a flash. The “Wolly Mamoth” is a good place to start. Outside visit Totem Park for some good totem pole pics!

Mount Baker

Mount Baker

Victoria’s Scenic Drive-for some of the best pic opportunities available in Victoria follow Victoria’s Scenic Marine Drive down Dallas road and on into Oak Bay.

Gonzales Bay along Victoria's scenic drive

Gonzales Bay along Victoria’s scenic drive

The Chinese Cemetery along the scenic drive (just off the drive…take Crescent Road where it turns towards the ocean)

Chinese Cemetery

Chinese Cemetery

Greater  Victoria – Oak Bay – this house at the corner of Dalhousie and Beach Drive has probably the most beautiful flower gardens in all of greater Victoria. While there visit Willows Beach, arguably the most popular beach in Greater Victoria.

flower garden at Oak Bay House near Willows Beach

flower garden at Oak Bay House near Willows Beach (ab0ve)

Butchart Gardens is a “no brainer” for photo ops, they are everywhere, starting with the spectacular Sunken Garden.

 

Langford in Greater Victoria

Bear Mountain Golf Course in Langford: In addition to two 18 hole golf courses, Bear Mountain has incredible views of the south end of Vancouver Island as seen below.

Mile Zero – Trans Canada Highway – at the south end of Douglas Street at the waterfront on Dallas Road. This is probably the most photographed spot on Vancouver Island. Nearby is Canadian Hero Terry Fox’s statue.

Market Square Lower Johnson Street – great spot to photo op some of the architecture of old towne Victoria!

Market Square Lower Johnson Street

Market Square Lower Johnson Street

Abkhazi Garden Victoria BC

Abkhazi Garden Victoria BC

Abkhazi Garden Victoria BC

Abkhazi Garden Victoria BC

Abkhazi Garden Victoria BC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ladysmith Rhododendron

The Ladysmith Rhododendron above 
This a tree-sized rhododendron that was planted in 1889 in Ladysmith! It is called Lady Cynthia and when in full bloom it is absolutely spectacular. It is approximately seven metres tall and nine metres wide. It is considered as one of the most beautiful trees in the world.

Animals
Vancouver Island has the potential to give you very exciting animal encounters whether on land or at sea. Many types of whales, seals and sea lions, wolves, black bear and the occasional grizzly, roosevelt elk, and more deer than we want-most walking the streets of Victoria. The ugly one is a wolf eel, part of the underwater animal population. To fully enjoy our island you need to get out on the water. Starting top left…cougar dragging dinner, a wolf eel, orca lunging, elephant seal molting, sea lions at race rocks, Rossevelt Elk, Deer, black bear, and a wolf!

Campbell River – Approximately 3 hours north of Victoria and about 1.5 hours north of Nanaimo, this beautiful town has much to offer visitors and tourists. If you take the short Ferry ride over to Quadra Island or go boating off shore you will see the amazing backdrop of snow covered coastal mountains.

Vancouver Island Coastal Mountains

Vancouver Island Coastal Mountains

Saturna Island in the Southern Gulf Islands near Victoria

Bootcove- on beautiful Saturna Island in the Southern Gulf Islands near Victoria

Bootcove- on beautiful Saturna Island

 

Hornby Island

Halliwell Park Hornby Island

Halliwell Park Hornby Island

Saltspring Island -one of the Southern Gulf Islands near Victoria

Saltspring Island Shoreline

Saltspring Island Shoreline

Galiano Island Shoreline Cave -Look for a gate at the top of the hill just above the end of the road to Retreat Cove

Galiano Island near Retreat Cove

Galiano Island near Retreat Cove (above)

The Coombs Old Country Market, known as “goats on the roof” is the best little tourist trap in the world. It has put the small town of Coombs on the map! I will bet you cannot visit there without spending some money, even it is only having an ice cream cone in the 40 foot ice cream bar. It is amazing and a great pic

 

 

 

 

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Coombs Old Country Market

Coombs Old Country 

Butchart Gardens is a no brainer if you are looking for a place to take outstanding pictures.

Butchart Gardens is a no-brainer if you are looking for a place to take outstanding pictures.