Where to Eat, Drink, and Shop in Victoria, B.C.

Craft cocktail Bodega Bar Victoria BC

With flowers blooming year-round, Victoria, Canada, is a desirable place to live and vacation. Located on the southern tip of Vancouver Island, visitors can fly, ferry, or cruise to British Columbia’s capital city.

Once you arrive in Victoria, the Inner Harbour, considered to be one of the most beautiful in the world, is an excellent place to begin exploring the city. After wandering along the Inner Harbour’s multi-level walkway, follow this guide — Where to Eat, Drink, and Shop in Victoria — and discover some of the best spots in British Columbia’s capital city.  Use the Google map at the end of this article to locate all of the recommended places to eat, drink, and shop in Victoria, B.C.

Photo credit: Destination Greater Victoria

Where to Drink in Victoria

Caffeine Fix

Fragrant tea shops and cozy cafes abound in Victoria, B.C. When I am downtown, I often stop at Union Pacific Coffee Co. near Chinatown.

Union Pacific where to eat, drink and shop in VictoriaAnother excellent espresso stop is Shatterbox Coffee Co. located in the Victoria Public Market.

Fresh Juice 

Quench your thirst with fresh juice at Rebar, a Victoria favourite since 1988.

Afternoon Tea

The iconic Fairmont Empress Hotel serves a traditional afternoon tea in the tea lobby overlooking Victoria’s spectacular Inner Harbour.

High tea Empress Hotel Victoria

Another option is The Tea House at Abkhazi Garden, where you can enjoy delicious tea and attentive service in a garden setting near downtown Victoria.

Flowers Abkhazi Garden Things to do in Victoria BC
Abkhazi Garden Victoria, BC Photo by Deddeda Stemler

Cocktail Hour

Victoria’s bartenders often use award-winning local craft spirits, and fresh ingredients to create incredible cocktails. Plan to visit the cozy Bodega Bar in Victoria’s Trounce Alley. At night, the outdoor passageway is illuminated with authentic gaslights that are over 125 years old. You can learn more about Victoria’s craft spirits and cocktails in this story I wrote for the San Francisco Chronicle.

Craft cocktail Bodega Bar Victoria BC

Where to Eat in Victoria

Clean Eating

Clean eating is a passion, and my favourite restaurants are Rebar and be love. At Rebar, I order the Rebar salad or the monk’s curry. At be love restaurant, I always order the green bowl — it’s delicious!

Pub Food

For pub food and a pint, Irish Times or the Bard and Banker Public House on Government Street are excellent choices.

Irish Times Bastion Square Where to Eat and Drink in Victoria

Fantastic Food Truck

For a fresh fish fix, head over to Finest at Sea, located on the other side of the Inner Harbour. The on-site food truck serves the best fish tacos.

Fine Dining

Make a reservation at The Courtney Room located in Victoria’s award-winning Magnolia Hotel for a meal to remember. Recognized as one of the top 100 restaurants in Canada, The Courtney Room partners with local supplies and serves modern Pacific Northwest cuisine.

Halibut at The Courtney Room one of the best places to eat in Victoria
Photo credit Leila Kwok

Sweet Treats

Tucked away on tiny Broad Street, Bon Macaron makes delicious and authentic macarons in every flavour imaginable. If you want to learn how to make your own,  sign-up for an in-store macaron-making class.

Bon Macaron where to eat, drink and shop in Victoria, B.C.

Food Tour

To learn more about Victoria’s thriving food and beverage scene from a local expert, join A Taste of Victoria Food Tour. You can book one of the two-hour walking tours here.

Where to Shop in Victoria

Books

Munro’s Books, located in a stunning neo-classical building on Government Street, is a perfect place to pick up your next page-turner.

Munro's where to eat, drink, and shop in Victoria

Tea and Accessories

Silk Road offers a large selection of organic teas, tea-making accessories, and fabulous bath and body products.

Silk Road tea where to shop in Victoria BC

Clothing

Lower Johnson, known locally as LoJo, offers an excellent selection of mostly locally owned women’s and men’s shops.

Victoria’s Lululemon store carries everything for an active lifestyle. This includes yoga, running, tennis, or chasing after your kids.

Located off of Johnson Street, Bernstein & Gold carries jewellery, women’s clothing, shoes, and accessories. I rarely leave empty-handed.

Visit Smoking Lily for locally-made and stylish clothing. The unique silk-screened designs are gorgeous.

Where to Eat, Drink, and Shop in Victoria — Travel Tips

  • Plan to spend at least three days in Victoria, B.C. After wandering the city, there are beaches, parks, and incredible day trips like this one to the Cowichan Valley.
  • Read this post to discover a few of Victoria’s best beaches.
  • If you are visiting Victoria during the December holiday season, this post will help you plan festive and family-friendly activities in and around the city.

Have you been to Vancouver Island? Where are your favourite places to eat, drink, and shop in Victoria?

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