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Signature City Victoria: Pacific Wilderness City Tamed by British Tradition

Program Number: 17749RJ
Start and End Dates:
8/9/2015 - 8/14/2015; 9/6/2015 - 9/11/2015;
Duration: 5 nights
Location: Victoria, British Columbia
Price starting at: $1,299.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Signature Cities
Meals: 13; 5 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners    
Meal Options: Low Fat; Low Salt; Vegetarian    

Join local experts on an exploration of the history and culture of an iconic West Coast city with a long and rich First Nations aboriginal heritage. Trace the tale of European settlement in British Columbia and its legacy today, make fascinating discoveries in the area’s terrestrial and marine ecosystems, and experience Victoria’s legendary passion for gardening in this beautiful coastal city steeped with history and tradition.




Highlights

• Enjoy Victoria’s gardening tradition at its finest in the world-class Butchart Gardens and other unique gardens.
• Savor the grand tradition of Afternoon Tea served in the famed Empress Hotel.
• Take field trips to significant sites like Fisgard Lighthouse, the majestic Parliament Building, Hatley Castle, Fan Tan Alley and more.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to 10 blocks on city sidewalks or well-maintained level paths.



Coordinated by Skagit Valley College.




Victoria

This provincial capital on Vancouver Island is blessed with spectacular scenery and a mild climate year-round. Home to Butchart Gardens and the Empress Hotel, Victoria is rich in First Nations history, marine coastal ecosystems, cultural attractions and European charm that dates to its years spent under British colonial rule.



Accommodations
Well-appointed hotel with swimming pool and fitness center near inner harbor.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
John Adams

John Adams is the author of “Old Square-Toes and His Lady: The Life of James and Amelia Douglas.” Part historian and part storyteller, John has turned a passion for the past into a long career in history. His family-owned business Discover the Past provides a variety of historical educational programs for the community. His natural, lively, humorous and clear style makes his presentations both informative and memorable.
 
Paul Turmel

Paul Turmel is a retired horticulturalist from Butchart’s Gardens. While living near Boston, he trained in ornamental horticulture prior to earning a liberal arts degree. Eventually immigrating to Canada, Paul has been a resident of Victoria, British Columbia for 35 years. His career at Butchart Gardens as gardener, trainer, and specialized expert lasted more than a decade.
 
Meals and Lodgings
   Royal Scot Hotel & Suites
  Victoria BC 5 nights
 Royal Scot Hotel & Suites
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: With our convenient location in the heart of downtown Victoria, the largest city on Vancouver Island, BC, you can take a leisurely stroll along Victoria’s famous Inner Harbour, shop for treasures on Antiques Row or make business connections in Victoria’s nearby downtown core. Just step outside the hotel doors and into the celebrated sites of downtown Victoria. Take a horse and carriage tour of Victoria with family and friends, create memories at Beacon Hill Park, the Royal BC Museum is just around the block. Take in views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Olympic Mountains. There’s so much to see and do right at our doorstep! Enjoy yourself in the Royal Scot Hotel & Suite’s beautiful indoor pool, whirl pool, sauna and exercise room. Have some fun in our billiards room or gather with friends for a hand of bridge or a movie in the games room. We offer free wireless Internet access throughout the hotel. For your convenience our courtesy shuttle is available to take you anywhere within Victoria's downtown core. After a full day, rest easy in the cozy comfort of the Royal Scot Hotel & Suites and feel at home in downtown Victoria.
  Contact info: 425 Quebec Street
Victoria, BC V8V 1W7 Canada
phone: 800-663-7515
web: www.royalscot.com
  Room amenities: Our rooms are large and comfortable Studio Suites with Two Queen Beds (or one Queen bed when desired), with separate sitting area. There is a privacy divider between the two areas. LCD television with cable channels and DVD player. Complimentary wireless Internet access. Free local calls. In-room safe. Complimentary newspapers. Private mini kitchen with refrigerator, stovetop, microwave, and cookware/dishes/utensils. En suite bathroom with shower/tub combination. Bath amenities include hair dryer, makeup/shaving mirror, and complimentary toiletries. Bathrobes. Clock radio and iron/ironing board. Non-Smoking.
  Facility amenities: On-site Restaurant, Bar, 24-Hour Front Desk, Newspapers, Grounds, Non-Smoking Rooms, Elevator, Safe, Heating, Baggage Storage, All Spaces Non-Smoking (Public and Private), Sauna, Fitness Center, Game Room, Pool Table, Hot Tub, Library, Indoor Swimming Pool (all year), Room Service, Business Center, Laundry, Dry Cleaning, Souvenir/Gift Shop, Tour Desk, Fax/Photocopying, On-Site ATM Machine, Shuttle Service (free), Vending Machine (drinks), Vending Machine (snacks), Airport Shuttle (arranged for a fee). Free Wi-fi is available in the hotel rooms. Parking Public parking is possible on site (reservation is not needed) and costs approx CAD $12 per day (subject to change).
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: Rates vary by season Please contact the hotel directly at 1-800-663-7515 for rates, reservations and extended stay options. Be sure to identify yourself as a Road Scholar participant.
  Check in time: 3:00 PM
  Additional nights after: Rates vary by season Please contact the hotel directly at 1-800-663-7515 for rates, reservations and extended stay options. Be sure to identify yourself as a Road Scholar participant.
  Check out time: 12:00 PM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Program begins with 5:00 PM Orientation. You will be staying at Royal Scot Hotel & Suites that night.
  End of Program:
Program concludes after breakfast - by 9:30 AM. You will be staying at Royal Scot Hotel & Suites the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. Passports required for US Citizens traveling to Canada. Visit the following link for current information: travel.state.gov/travel/cbpmc/cbpmc_2223.html
  Parking availability:
Parking is available at the hotel; approximately $12.00/night subject to change.
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  Victoria BC
  Nearest city or town:  Victoria BC
  Nearest highway: HWY 1
  Nearest airport:  Victoria International Airport
  From End of Program
  Location: Victoria BC
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details
 

Victoria Clipper Passenger Ferry (Pier 69-Downtown Seattle); To/From SeaTac Airport

 

To Ferry Landing

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi
Yellow Cab of Seattle
phone: 206-622-6500

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

approx. $40
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

approx. 20-30 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

25-30 miles

   

To get Victoria Clipper (Pier 69) in Seattle, cab service is needed to/from SeaTac Airport. SeaTac Airport contracts with a single taxi company, which is Yellow Cab as of 2013.

 

Seattle (Downtown Pier 69) to Friday Harbor and Victoria BC

 

To Ferry Landing

 
 

Service:

 

Public Transportation
Victoria Clipper Passenger Ferry
phone: 800-888-2535
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Approx $90-95 depending upon season.
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

   

The Victoria Clipper offers high speed passenger ferry service between the downtown Seattle (Pier 69) and Victoria's Inner Harbour. Limited sailings daily vary by season. Visit www.victoriaclipper.com for current schedule, rate and reservation information. The Clipper ferry lands in Victoria's Inner harbour conveniently approx 1-2 blocks from the Royal Scot Hotel. *Note:Friday Harbor stops are limited by season. For other options to get to Victoria see "Frequently Asked Questions" section.

 

SeaTac Airport/Seattle; To/From WA State Ferry Terminal in Anacortes, WA

 

To Ferry Landing

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Bellair Airporter Shuttle
phone: 866-235-5247
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Senior fare approx $35 one way or $65 round trip
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

3 hours to ferry terminal plus scenic 1.5 hour ferry ride. 

   

This service runs 7 days a week throughout the year except on Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas Day. Select route from SeaTac Airport to Anacortes/San Juan Islands ferry terminal (www.airporter.com).

 

WA State Ferry Terminal; To/From Sidney BC Ferry Terminal

 

To Ferry Landing

 
 

Service:

 

Public Transportation
www.wsdot.wa.gov/ferries/
phone: 888-808-7977
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Price varies - see comments below
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

2-3 hours 

 

Distance:

 

approx. 50 miles

   

Vessel sailing from Anacortes, WA to Sidney BC is approximately 2.5 -3 hours. *Prices vary by sailing season, but typically range about $10 one-way for passenger fare and $40 for car/driver fare. Special note: this ferry does not operate under the Winter sailing schedule.

 

WA State Ferry Terminal in Sidney BC; To/From Victoria BC inner harbour hotels

 

From Ferry Landing

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi
Yellow Cab of Victoria
phone: 250-381-2222

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Rates Very by Hotel Location - Please inquire from driver at time of booking
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

20-30 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

20-30 miles

   

Transportation to/from the WA State ferry terminal in Sidney, BC and Victoria BC inner harbour hotels.

 

Victoria International Airport

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
AKAL Shuttle
phone: 877-386-2525

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Approx $20/pp CAD one way
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

25 minutes 

   

For other options to get to Victoria see "Frequently Asked Questions" section.

 
Driving Directions
  Swartz Bay BC Ferry Terminal Take Hwy 17 south approximately 16 miles into Victoria. Hwy 17 becomes "Blanshard" once in Victoria. Turn slight slight right onto Belleville St. Turn Left onto Menzies St. Turn right onto Quebec St. Hotel is on the left. Royal Scots Hotel & Suites address is 425 Quebec Street, Victoria BC
  Victoria International Airport Take Hwy 17 south approximately 15 miles into Victoria. Hwy 17 becomes "Blanshard" once in Victoria. Turn slight slight right onto Belleville St. Turn Left onto Menzies St. Turn right onto Quebec St. Hotel is on the left. Royal Scots Hotel & Suites address is 425 Quebec Street, Victoria BC
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Welcome, Orientation, and Get Acquainted
(Sunday, September 6)
   
 Afternoon: Welcome and Orientation Activities
 Dinner: Dinner at Royal Scot Hotel & Suites.
 Evening: Get Acquainted Activities
   
Accommodations: Royal Scot Hotel & Suites
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: BC & Victoria History / Empress Tea / Chinatown Exploration
(Monday, September 7)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the Royal Scot Hotel & Suites.
 Morning: Morning presentations set the stage to learn about the rich history of the Garden City and the Province. Then, a horticulturist puts Victoria's unique micro-climate and legendary passion for gardening in context for your multiple garden explorations throughout the week.
 Lunch: Special Event: Enjoy grand tradition of Afternoon Tea in the majestic Empress Hotel . Savor the award-winning Pastry Chef’'s authentic and memorable delights - from your very first sip of the secret blend of Tea at The Empress, right through to the freshly baked raisin scones served with heavy cream and strawberry preserves.
 Afternoon: Head out on foot for an expert guided exploration of historic Chinatown including the "Gates of Harmonious Interest", and the famously narrow "Fan Tan Alley" and more!
 Dinner: Special dinner out in the heart of Chinatown featuring traditional Cantonese, Szechuan and Western-style dishes served with excellent, friendly service.
 Evening: Optional evening harborside stroll with Group Leader to points of scenic and cultural interest.
   
Accommodations: Royal Scot Hotel & Suites
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Fort Rodd Hill Historic Site and Fisgard Lighthouse / Hatley Castle
(Tuesday, September 8)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the Royal Scot Hotel & Suites.
 Morning: Field trip to explore the coast. First, visit the Fort Rodd Hill National Historic site including the picturesque Fisgard Lighthouse. Built in 1860, Fisgard Lighthouse celebrated its 150th birthday in 2010, and was the first lighthouse built on Canada's West Coast.
 Lunch: Special group lunch at the oldest pub in British Columbia. The food is made from scratch using the best and freshest ingredients, using herbs and vegetables from their own organic culinary garden.
 Afternoon: Explore the stately Hatley Castle with its incredible gardens on the grounds of Royal Roads University. Learn the unique history of James Dunsmuir who commissioned Samuel Maclure, a Victorian architect, to design the Castle. Field trip concludes with exploration of the Japanese, Italian, and Rose gardens on the Castle grounds
 Dinner: Dinner at Royal Scot Hotel & Suites.
 Evening: Take an optional evening walk to “Fisherman’s Wharf, “ a colourful little fishing village on the water.
   
Accommodations: Royal Scot Hotel & Suites
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Parliament Building Exploration / Abkhazi Garden / Government House Gardens
(Wednesday, September 9)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the Royal Scot Hotel & Suites.
 Morning: A docent guides you on a field trip through the magnificent Parliament Building, focal point of Victoria's Inner Harbour. The Royal BC Museum follows your visit to the Parliament Building. The Royal BC Provincial Museum highlights the natural and cultural history of the region through an array of unique galleries. The museum features millions of authentic artifacts and specimens displayed in highly realistic diorama's, giving visitors the experience of another time and place.
 Lunch: Lunch at Royal Scot Hotel & Suites.
 Afternoon: Field trip to the Abkhazi Japanese Garden for exploration and afternoon tea amidst one of Canada's Most Significant Garden Creations. This exquisite heritage home and garden was created by the Prince and Princess Abkhazi in 1946 when they married settled in Victoria after living separate lives touched by both privilege and tragedy. The Abkhazis worked together on their creation for over 40 years, and it is now owned and managed by the Land Conservancy. Conclude the afternoon with exploration of the nearby Government House Gardens.
 Dinner: Dinner out on own to explore Victoria's splendid array of Pacific Northwest and eclectic world cuisine.
 Evening: Free evening to explore Victoria or relax at the hotel.
   
Accommodations: Royal Scot Hotel & Suites
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 5: Butchart's Garden's--National Historic Site of Canada / Emily Carr House / Musical Farewell Performance
(Thursday, September 10)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the Royal Scot Hotel & Suites.
 Morning: Field trip to explore the world class Butchart's Garden. Spend the morning strolling the Japanese garden, rose garden, the amazing sunken garden, and more!
 Lunch: Enjoy special lunch buffet at the Blue Poppy Restaurant at Butchart Gardens
 Afternoon: Upon return to the Inner Harbour, we'll visit the Emily Carr House, a National and Provincial Historic Site dedicated to the art, writings and life of renowned Canadian artist, Emily Carr.
 Dinner: Dinner at Royal Scot Hotel & Suites.
 Evening: Special Musical Farewell performance by local artist.
   
Accommodations: Royal Scot Hotel & Suites
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Farewell / Departures
(Friday, September 11)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the Royal Scot Hotel & Suites.
 Morning: Farewell and Bon Voyage! Program concludes after breakfast - approximately 9:30 AM. Hotel check out is 11:00 AM.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast

Free Time Opportunities
 
  Victoria BC Victoria BC Visitor's Guide
Victoria Visitor's Guide For additional information, visit www.tourismvictoria.com
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


Old-Square-Toes and His Lady: The Life of James and Amelia Douglas


Author: John Adams


Description: John Adam's bestseller Old Square-Toes and His Lady: The Life of James and Amelia Douglas serves as an important source of information regarding the first Governor of British Columbia. At the pinnacle of his career, Douglas was knighted by order of Queen Victoria. Considering his modest, mixed-race beginnings in South America, his lofty status is, indeed, remarkable. Equally so is the life of his wife, Amelia. She was also of mixed blood, her mother being Cree and her father Irish. But unlike Douglas, who was educated in Scotland, she never left the northern forests until they married. Their ending up as a knight and lady of the British Empire was an unusual achievement. Old Square-Toes discusses the Douglas's' diverse experiences of astonishing contrasts, from crossing North America by canoe to touring Europe by train, from Native uprisings to the frantic gold rush. Besides finding glory, they also faced grief in losing seven of their beloved children. This is a story of the adventure, heartbreak, and devotion that lies at the roots of western Canada. Author, historian and heritage enthusiast John Adams is well known in Victoria. A regional manager for BC Heritage, he also lectures in museum studies at the University of Victoria. ISBN 0-920663-77-X



A Field Guide to Coastal Flowers of the Pacific Northwest


Author: Phillipa Hudson


Description: With gorgeous full-colour photos arranged in an easy-to-use colour coded chart for quick identification, the pocket-sized format is perfect for taking along on walks and hikes through both the Pacific Northwest countryside as well as the urban wilds of West Coast cities. Supplying English and Latin names, the distribution range of each species and average plant height and flower size, Phillipa Hudson shares her knowledge of coast flora gained through over 30 years as an active amateur botanist.



Trees and Shrubs for Pacific Northwest Gardens


Author: John A. Grant, Carol L. Grant


Description: Northwest gardeners have relied on the solid information found in various editions of this book for more than 50 years. This greatly enlarged 1990 edition reflects the vast increase in suitable plants for the region now available from area nurseries





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