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beacon hill park in victoria, bc.

Beacon Hill Park Victoria: A Treasure Trove of Natural Wonders

Nestled in the heart of Victoria, BC, Beacon Hill Park stands as a testament to our quaint harbour city’s natural beauty and historical significance.

This sprawling park offers 740,000 square metres of green space and a plethora of activities, sights, and experiences that cater to every age and interest, and I can’t wait to share it with you.

From its meticulously landscaped gardens and native ecosystems to its family-friendly attractions and historical landmarks, Beacon Hill Park Victoria is a must-visit destination for locals and tourists alike.

  1. Overview
  2. Things to Do in Beacon Hill Park
  3. Beacon Hill Park Tours
  4. Planning your Visit
  5. FAQs

A Brief Overview of Beacon Hill Park

Beacon Hill Park is undoubtedly the crown jewel of Victoria’s park system. Simply put, a visit to this serene greenspace should be right at the top of your Victoria itinerary. But what makes it so special?

Beacon Hill has long been a sanctuary for those seeking tranquillity and beauty within the city’s limits. Whether you’re looking to get some exercise, sneak in a relaxing picnic, or let the kids blow off some steam, Beacon Hill Park is the place to do it in the Garden City.

Long a place of rest and relaxation for members of the Songhees First Nation, it was established as a public space way back in 1858. Its name is derived from the hill in its Southern confines that provides stunning views of the shoreline and Olympic Mountains.

Though publically funded, Beacon Hill Park also relies on donations from the public to keep it in pristine condition. Please consider visiting the Friends of Beacon Hill Park Society to leave a small token of your appreciation.

Beacon Hill Park Location

This 75 ha (183 acre) park can be found along the scenic shore of the Strait of Juan de Fuca just south of downtown in James Bay. This tranquil neighbourhood is just a short stroll from the tourist meccas of Fisherman’s Wharf, Ogden Point Cruise Terminal, and the Inner Harbour.

The vicinity of Beacon Hill Park to downtown, the BC Legislature, and the residential neighbourhood of Fairfield also make it an urban oasis for office workers, parliamentarians, and local families alike.


Nestled within its bounds are serene woodlands and picturesque shoreline trails. Beacon Hill Park boasts two playgrounds, a petting zoo, and a thrilling waterpark, making a visit one of the best things to do in Victoria with kids. Sports enthusiasts will find their haven in the playing fields, tennis, and pickleball courts.

Additionally, the park is dotted with numerous ponds and meticulously landscaped gardens, creating a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. If you’re lucky, you might even encounter local wildlife, such as Blue Herons, Canada Geese, Swans, Turtles, and even Peacocks.

Let’s take a detailed look at the best things to do in Beacon Hill Park.

Things to Do in Beacon Hill Park Victoria

Fall colours envelop the gardens at Beacon Hill Park in Victoria.
Courtesy: Friends of Beacon Hill Park Society

Smell the flowers in the Beacon Hill Park Gardens

Most visitors to Victoria are likely quite familiar with the famed Butchart Gardens botanical garden. But few are aware that Beacon Hill Park provides a free (and admittedly smaller scale) alternative just steps from the downtown core.

The park has a number of gardens that are a riot of colour and fragrance, showcasing both exotic and native plant species. The Rose Garden and Alpine Garden are particularly stunning, offering a visual feast from spring through summer.

Related: How to Get to Butchart Gardens from Victoria: No Car, No Problem

a group of goats at the Beacon Hill Children's Farm.
Instagram: @beaconhillchildrensfarm

Engage in some Beacon Hill Family Fun at the Children’s Farm

Beacon Hill Park is a haven for families, with attractions like the Beacon Hill Children’s Farm, where kids can interact with farm animals and one of Victoria’s best playgrounds. The petting zoo, home to goats, pigs, donkeys, Alpacas and more, is a highlight, providing an educational and fun experience for children.

Operating since 1985, the farm was founded to help kids develop a respect for animals that will remain with them for life. A visit is a must; trust me, the cuteness factor is cranked up to 12!

Related: Victoria’s Best Parks & Gardens

The world's 4th tallest totem pole in Beacon Hill Park, Victoria, BC.

Visit the Beacon Hill Victoria Historical Landmarks

Beacon Hill Park is dotted with historical landmarks that tell the story of Victoria’s past. Here’s a quick list of monuments of historical value that are worth a quick visit:

  • The Totem Pole: Erected by Munro Martin in 1956, this 38.8-metre (128-foot) Kwakwaka’wakw stunner was once the world’s tallest totem pole. It stands in the park’s south-eastern quadrant as a symbol of the region’s Indigenous culture.
  • The Mile 0 Monument: Located in the park’s southwestern corner, this monument marks the beginning (or end) of the Trans-Canada Highway, offering a unique photo opportunity and a moment to reflect on the vastness of Canada.
  • The Terry Fox Statue: Situated adjacent to the Mile 0 monument, you’ll find this modest tribute to a Canadian legend who attempted to run across Canada to raise money for cancer research.
  • The Pebble Bridge: A quaint pedestrian bridge over Goodacre Lake erected by Alice Carr in tribute to her famous sister Emily. It provides a great view of the Goodacre Fountain.

Related: Free Things to Do in Victoria: A Budget Friendly Guide

a woman bikes through Victoria's Beacon Hill Park.

Get the Heart Rate Pumping

For those looking to stay active, Beacon Hill Park boasts a variety of sports courts and fields, walking trails, and an off-leash dog area. Whether you’re up for a game of tennis, a leisurely stroll, or a picnic on the spacious lawns, the park accommodates all forms of outdoor enjoyment.

Looking to enjoy the waterfront? Walk across Dallas Road to Finlayson Point or Spiral Beach. Here, you’ll find a haven for sailboarders and paragliders. The adjacent Dallas Road Waterfront Trail is also a fantastic spot for a leisurely seaside walk or jog.

Related: Victoria in Spring: From Cherry Blossoms to City Charms

A show at the Cameron Bandshell in Beacon Hill Park.
Courtesy: Manuel Perez Lopez

Check out a Show at the Cameron Bandshell

The Cameron Bandshell is an outdoor performance venue located bang in the middle of Beacon Hill Park. If you’re fortunate enough to find yourself in Victoria in the summer, you’ll have access to a variety of free events and concerts from June to September.

Otherwise known as the Stage in the Park, this iconic 300-seat venue has featured everything from folk music and opera to outdoor film screenings in years past. You never know who you’ll see. A young Green Day even played a free show here in the early 90s!

Visit Arts Victoria for information on this year’s schedule.

Related: What is Victoria Known For?

Beacon Hill Victoria Tours

You’re free to visit Beacon Hill Park on your own. After all, it is a literal walk in the park. But there are also a number of Victoria tours that include a visit to Beacon Hill Park amongst other highlights in your Victoria itinerary.

I’ve curated a selection of tours that are designed to immerse you in the best of Victoria, combining the natural beauty of Beacon Hill Park with the rich tapestry of attractions this historic city has to offer.

Castles, Hoods & Legends Bike Tour

Duration: 2 hours | Departure Point: Belleville St. | Cost: From CA$68.00 | ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 150+ reviews

On this tour, you’ll embark on an exhilarating bike tour through the heart of downtown Victoria, where the city’s rich history and breathtaking attractions unfold with each pedal. Led by an expert guide, you’ll weave through the vibrant streets gaining knowledge at every turn.

Your journey will take you beyond the ordinary, exploring the essence of the Inner Harbour, the charm of Cook Street Village, and the mystique of Chinatown. You can revel in the stunning vistas along the Dallas Road waterfront and stand in awe of the majestic Craigdarroch Castle, a testament to Victoria’s eerie yet captivating past.

Finally, you’ll navigate through the natural beauty of Beacon Hill Park alongside a group of like minded travellers enjoying the park’s most notable sights. This is a perfect way for active travellers to enjoy the heart of Victoria.


Related: The 3 Best Victoria Bike Tours

a victoria bc horse tour with a couple riding

Beacon Hill Park Horse-Drawn Carriage Tour of Victoria

Duration: 1 hour | Departure Point: Belleville St. | Cost: From CA$255.00 | ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 55+ reviews

Immerse yourself in the elegance and charm of Victoria on a unique tour that transports you back in time: a traditional horse-drawn carriage ride. Let the rhythmic clip-clop of hooves and the expert narration of your guide weave the vibrant tapestry of the city’s Victorian history.

This journey of discovery takes you through the scenic beauty of Beacon Hill Park, the historic allure of James Bay, and along the picturesque waterfront. If you’re a couple, a senior, or a cruise passenger, this is a great way to see Victoria (and Beacon Hill Park) in a hurry.

A Victoria horse-drawn carriage tour is also a fantastic way to experience the city’s storied past and breathtaking landscapes in a way that’s as unforgettable as it is romantic.


Related: The Victoria Hop-on Hop-off Bus: A 2024 Ticket Guide

A map of Beacon Hill Park, Victoria, BC.

Planning Your Visit to Beacon Hill Park Victoria

Visiting Beacon Hill Park is a journey through Victoria’s natural and cultural landscape. Here are some tips to make the most of your visit:

  • Best Times to Visit: Each season brings its own charm to the park. Spring and summer highlight the gardens’ beauty, while fall and winter offer a quieter yet equally enchanting experience.
  • Accessibility: The park is accessible to visitors with mobility challenges, though some areas may have uneven terrain.
  • Dog-Friendly Areas: Bring your furry friend along for the adventure, but remember to keep them on a leash in designated areas.
  • Driving: If you’re looking for parking, the largest lot can be found in the centre of the park off Circle Drive, which can be reached via Douglas Street. You’ll also find smaller lots near the tennis courts and along Dallas Road.
  • Walking: The NW corner of the park is located just two blocks from the heart of the Inner Harbour along Douglas Street. If you’re coming from the cruise terminal, you’re looking at a brisk 20-minute seaside stroll along Dallas Road.

Beyond the Park

Beacon Hill Park’s central location in Victoria makes it a perfect starting point for exploring the city’s other attractions. The Royal BC Museum, Fisherman’s Wharf, the Inner Harbour, and most Victoria hotels are just a short walk away, each offering its own unique experiences.

Beacon Hill Park Victoria, BC FAQs

Beacon Hill Park is located in the heart of Victoria, BC, bordered by Douglas Street to the west, Superior Street to the north, Dallas Road to the south, and Cook Street to the east. This prime location makes Beacon Hill Park easily accessible from downtown Victoria and a central point of interest for visitors and locals alike.

The top things to do in Beacon Hill Park Victoria include exploring its beautiful gardens, such as the Rose Garden and Alpine Garden, visiting the Children’s Farm and petting zoo, admiring the historical Totem Pole, and enjoying the scenic views from Mile 0 of the Trans-Canada Highway.

Recreational activities like tennis, picnicking, and walking through the park’s extensive trails are also popular. In the summer, you can also check out a concert or film at the Cameron Bandshell.

Yes, Beacon Hill Park is an excellent place to visit for families. With its Children’s Farm, petting zoo, spacious playgrounds, and picnic areas, Beacon Hill Park Victoria provides a variety of family-friendly activities. The park’s safe and welcoming environment makes it a favourite among families looking to spend quality time outdoors.

Beacon Hill Victoria is known for its stunning natural landscapes, historical landmarks, and recreational facilities. The park is famous for its meticulously maintained gardens, the iconic Totem Pole, and the Mile 0 marker of the Trans-Canada Highway.

Beacon Hill Park’s diverse ecosystems, including Garry Oak meadows and scenic coastline, contribute to its reputation as a natural gem in the heart of Victoria, BC.

Walking around Beacon Hill Park can take anywhere from 1 to 2 hours, depending on your pace and how much of the park you wish to explore. The park covers an area of 200 acres, featuring a variety of trails and paths that meander through gardens, forests, and along the coastline. Visitors can enjoy a leisurely stroll or a more brisk walk, taking in the park’s natural beauty and attractions.

Beacon Hill was officially established as a park in 1885, when its land was set aside for public use. The park has since become a cherished part of Victoria, evolving over the years to include a wide range of natural and cultural features.

Beacon Hill Park’s long history is reflected in its diverse landscapes and historical landmarks, making it a significant cultural heritage site in Victoria, BC.

All Set for your visit to Beacon Hill Park Victoria?

Beacon Hill Park is more than just a park; it’s a microcosm of Victoria’s beauty, history, and community spirit.

Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a longtime resident, the park invites you to discover its wonders anew with each visit.

So pack a picnic, lace up your walking shoes, and prepare to be enchanted by the natural gem that is Beacon Hill Park, Victoria, BC.

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