Water Activities in Victoria
Water is life and, in this city surrounded by water, it refreshes and invigorates and puts the zest into life. Its never far to a perfect place for a swim, a beach for building sandcastles, a bay to launch a kayak, or a lagoon to watch some birds.
City and regional lakes and beaches entice with abundant recreational and leisure opportunities and, when the heat builds up, the refreshing waters beckon – for a swim or a soak, a sail or a paddle. So dive in, the water's fine!
For an unforgettable day of West Coast Fishing, check out local fishing charters that operate from the Inner Harbour and Sidney, which guide fishers to the best spots for salmon and halibut.
Sea kayaking is an exciting and popular sport here in Victoria. Sidney Whale Watching has a fleet of both single and double kayaks available. Our boathouse is situated in Sidney on the waterfront with access to both beach and dock entries. Tours are available from just a few hours to personalized multi day tours.
As one of Victoria's best loved freshwater swimming destinations, Thetis Lake Regional Park is renowned for its clear, clean water, fishing and great paddling. It's just 20 minutes from downtown off of Highway 1 on Six Mile Road.
Willows Beach is a long, broad stretch of white sand, just steps off Beach Drive near Dalhousie Street in Oak Bay. Its shallow, protected waters are a safe and ideal place for kids to burn off energy and a well-equipped and shaded playground is right next to the beach. A large open area bordered by big shady elms appeals to frisbee players and the beach is a popular place to launch kayaks. The Oak Bay Tea Room overlooks the beach and affords views across Haro Strait to the Olympic Mountains and the white cone of the dormant volcano, Mt. Baker.
Frequented by kayakers, windsurfers, canoeists, sunbathers and people walking their dogs, Cadboro Bay Beach sprawls itself out behind Cadboro Bay Village and in front of Gyro Park. This open grassy parkland is home to an assortment of concrete sea creatures, including a giant blue octopus and the mysterious sea serpent “Caddy,” said to frequent these waters. Dubbed “Cadborosaurus” by Victoria newspaper editor, Archie Willis, after a sighting here in the early 1930s, this seafaring cousin of the Loch Ness Monster is renowned to be a large snake-like creature, five to 15 metres long.
The seven-hectare Sooke Potholes Provincial Park is 5 kilometres north of Highway 14 on Sooke River Road. Created 15,000 years ago by glacial action and the subsequent lodging of boulders, the smooth and polished pools and potholes in the sandstone bedrock of the Sooke River have made this place one of the area's most popular summer swimming destinations.
The Strait of Juan de Fuca and the sheltered waters of the Salish Sea on the eastern flank of the Island boast some of the best scuba diving sites and the greatest diversity of marine life around. Some of the best shore diving anywhere in Canada is right at Victoria's front door, off the 760-metre (2,500-foot) long breakwater at Ogden Point.