This 24-hour birthday fly away will give you, your friends and your family a taste of Victoria’s rich history, cutting-edge technology and rocking good time vibe. With a mix of indulgent eating, cocktail imbibing and sightseeing with a competitive scavenger hunt twist, you’ll get a little bit of everything.
Don’t just celebrate your birthday this year – revel in it. Welcome the next chapter of your life with a kick a** good time. Start by dropping your bags at your hotel. Even though check-in isn’t typically available until the afternoon, most places will hold your bags while your fun begins.
12:00 P.M. – Lunch at Rebar
Healthy food and great flavor go hand-in-hand at Rebar. These folks are putting an inventive spin on vegetarian cuisine that satisfies veggie lovers and meat eaters alike. Plus – it’s always a good idea to pack your body with vitamins before a long night of celebration. The menu features a selection of salads such as kale with dried cranberries and gala apples, sweet potato and smoked salmon on top of spinach, and quinoa with wild rice and black beans. Additionally, there’s a selection of heartier wraps or yam quesadillas that will stick with you throughout the day.
1:30 P.M. – Brewery Tour at the Vancouver Island Brewery
Get a behind the scenes look at Victoria’s first craft brewery. Opened in 1984, the Vancouver Island Brewery has grown from just a six-man crew to an internationally recognized hub for full flavored beer. Despite their increased size, they maintain the same close attention to detail and commitment to full bodied flavors.
2:30 P.M. – City Scavenger Hunt
With its flat terrain, stunning views and various monuments, Victoria is the ideal walking city. Get the lay of the land – or at least the downtown – with a short scavenger hunt. Pair off and see who can get the most number of selfies by these famous spots:
- In front of the Fairmont Empress (721 Government St.)
- Beside the fountains at the Parliament Buildings (501 Belleville St.)
- With a Totem at Thunderbird Park (675 Belleville St.)
- Underneath the Gates of Harmonious Interest (Fisguard St. & Government St.)
- Walking through Fan Tan Alley (Entrance on Fisguard St., between Government St. & Store St.)
- By the St. Ann’s Academy sign (835 Humboldt St.)
- On the steps at Bastion Square (1127 Wharf St.)
Scavenger Hunt Bonus Photo: Get a picture in front of some Victoria street art (aka graffiti).
Insider Tip: If you’re visiting from the States, keep your phone on Airplane Mode to avoid getting dinged with a huge bill. But, this doesn’t mean you’re completely cut off. Victoria’s streets are equipped with free WiFi that you can pick up nearly everywhere. While it can be slow and sometimes unreliable, it’s a much better option for surfing the web than incurring those international fees.
3:30 P.M. – Grab a Pint at Irish Times
Compare notes from the scavenger hunt over pints at Irish Times. Who made it to every location? Which pair took the best selfie? Remember, everyone’s a winner after a few brews.
5:30 P.M. – Play a Round of Pool at The Games Room
Keep the party rolling with another dose of friendly competition at The Games Room. Located at the Strathcona Hotel, you’ll find a variety of games including darts, pool, chess and backgammon. Plus, there are enough plasma screen TVs to fill all your sporting desires.
7:00 P.M. – Dinner at Spinnakers
As Canada’s first gastropub, Spinnakers puts a local twist on their elevated pub fare. Love trying new brews? Their large selection of on-tap beers features a daily rotating cask. For a waterfront view, try to score a seat on their heated, covered patio. Or stay inside, where the double-sided fireplace is equally inviting.
9:00 P.M. – Hit the Town
With a mix of classic pubs and thriving clubs, Victoria’s nightlife offers a little something for everyone. Hermann’s Jazz Club and Bard and Banker both feature live music. Sopranos has nightly karaoke. At Lucky Bar you’ll find dancing and at Veneto you’ll discover some of the best cocktails in the city. Bar hop or stick to one spot. No matter what, Victoria’s evening scene will keep you entertained.
11:30 A.M. – Brunch at Jam Café
Nothing’s more important after a long night out than a late breakfast. In a city where brunch isn’t just a good idea, it’s a way of life, you and your group will be in good hands. While there are many cafés from which to choose, Jam Café has quickly become a late-breakfast favorite. With their sugar cured bacon strips and chorizo packed Eggs Benedict, it’s hard to go wrong. Plus, those who need a little “hair of the dog” won’t be disappointed by their morning cocktail list.