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Spring Flowers at The Butchart Gardens

With all the flowers now in bloom and the sun starting to come out, a day trip like our Victoria & Butchart Gardens Tour it is the perfect way to enjoy the gorgeous spring season.

While the Butchart Gardens embody the essence of every season, spring tends to be a favourite amongst our Tour Guides.

Should you be planning a trip over to see these meticulously maintained gardens, it’s worth noting that the flowers that dwell here are able to survive the challenging conditions of BC’s West Coast, and manage to look spectacular in the process.  

You’ll find no shortage of colours and variety as the spring gardens contain over 300,000 bulbs during the season. Some of the most prominent of these flowers are listed below:

 

Tulips

Tulips are often considered the stars of spring, and The Butchart Gardens always places them center stage.

You can find thousands of them along the winding pathways, within the Sunken Garden and the Italian Garden. The vibrant colours range from deep maroons, reds and purples to bright pinks, yellows, white, and oranges.

Courtesy of the Butchart Gardens Ltd., Victoria, BC Canada

Daffodils

There is no mistaking the bright yellow daffodil, a cheerful addition to anyone’s garden. In addition to the notable yellow version tucked amongst the blue forget-me-nots, you’ll also find many of the white daffodils throughout the many gardens.

Courtesy of the Butchart Gardens Ltd., Victoria, BC Canada

 

Ornamental Cherry

The ornamental cherry trees soft pink and white flowers act as a focal point against the sprawling green lawns in the gardens, making them hard to miss. Cherry blossom season usually lasts from late March to May, giving visitors plenty of time to check out these gorgeous flowers. Find these trees tucked within the Japanese Garden, which is also one of the most popular gardens with our Landsea Tour Guides.

Courtesy of the Butchart Gardens Ltd., Victoria, BC Canada

 

Magnolia

The Magnolia flower may not be as dramatic in its colouring compared to others, but it is one of the most important flowers since it is a common source of pollen. This white and pink flower attracts bees, hummingbirds and other pollinators to its sweet nectar. You’ll also find this flower blooming from the branches of a magnolia tree, rather than budding from the ground.

Courtesy of the Butchart Gardens Ltd., Victoria, BC Canada

 

Peony

The peony flower is a bustle of petals seen in pastel pinks, purples and whites, or a darker red. This flower can appear in various forms, each as bright as the last. You’ll find these guys are an imposing bundle of colour amongst the green bushes and are often a favourite of many gardeners.

Courtesy of the Butchart Gardens Ltd., Victoria, BC Canada

 

Rhododendron

The most diverse species of flower on our list, the rhododendron has over 1000 subspecies. This plant covers itself completely with hundreds of bright flowers and grows quickly. You’ll find the rhododendron is a staple in most gardens, brightening up its surroundings with a beautiful burst of colour.

Courtesy of the Butchart Gardens Ltd., Victoria, BC Canada

While there are countless more plants to be seen at The Butchart Gardens, we suggest visiting yourself to experience the wonder of this national heritage site of Canada, and the vision of Jenny Butchart.

 

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Summer in Review

With the days already growing shorter, the colour of the leaves starting to change and crops reaching their harvest point, Vancouver is ready for the fall season. Since next Friday is the first day of Autumn, why not reminisce on everything that happened this past summer in BC.

Honda Celebration of Lights

Watching the magnificent firework displays along Vancouver’s beaches is an annual tradition. This year’s competitors were South Korea, Sweden and South Africa. Each created an unbelievable combination of fireworks, related to the theme of ‘Love’. However, the overall winner of both the Judges’ and the People’s Choice was South Korea.

Credit: geebird11 via Instagram

Pride Parade

Another annual event in the summer is the Vancouver Pride Parade, which brings together people from all over the city. Again this year, the parade was a success, and we even received a visit from our Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau.

Wildfires

This year, we saw another season of the devastation that can be caused by wildfires. At one point, there were approximately 600 fires burning across BC at the same time. As a result, the province entered a state of emergency and also required the presence of the Canadian Armed Forces. Only within the last 2 weeks have the fires begun to lessen; however, the damage will have a lasting effect on our beautiful province. Below is a photo of one of our tour guides on the lake during mid-summer, surrounded by smoke. 

Credit: Stephen Elgar

PNE

Caramel apples covered with crickets, KitKat fries, and all sorts of delicious foods were present at this year’s Pacific National Exhibition. Also, new this year to the Fair, was the jousting show, Knights of Valour. Viewers could watch real and heartstopping, unchoreographed matches between professional jousters. Huzzah!

Credit: Tourism Vancouver/PNE

Cloudraker Skybridge 

A new suspension bridge opened up this past summer, and the Cloudraker Skybridge offers some of the best views in Whistler. Were you daring enough to walk 140 metres across the Whistler Bowl from the Peak to the West Ridge?

Vancouver Art Gallery

This summer, the Vancouver Art Gallery’s feature exhibit felt like it was made for a Canadian. The exhibit, called Cabin Fever, showcases the culture behind the architecture of a typical cabin in North America.

Royal BC Museum

In Victoria, the new exhibit at the Royal BC Museum, Egypt: The Time of Pharaohs, had everyone talking. The displays feature ancient artifacts and visitors had the opportunity to explore the mysteries of the Eqyptian civilization. Check out one of our previous blog posts for a complete review of the exhibit. Fortunately, visitors have until December to check out the displays for themselves.

Vallea Lumina

Another new attraction to open up in Whistler this summer was the multimedia night walk called Vallea Lumina. The story focuses on the tale of two long-lost hikers who stumble into a world of enchantment and light amongst the forgotten legends of Whistler.

Bard on the Beach

Hopefully, everyone had the chance to brush up on their Shakespeare with Bard on the Beach. This summer’s shows included As You Like It, Macbeth, Time in Athens, and Lysistrata.

Credit: Stephen Elgar

 

We wish we could sit and go over everything that happened this summer, but hopefully, our blog brings back a few recent memories. Was there anything you experienced this summer that should be on this list? Share it with us on social media!

Egypt: The Time of Pharaohs – Exhibit Review

Credit: Royal BC Museum

Ancient Egypt has always enthralled the world with its mysteries. So when the Royal BC Museum announced its latest feature exhibit, it was easy to see why people began planning their next trip to Victoria. Given the enchanting title of, “Egypt: The Time of Pharaohs,” visitors have the chance to explore the wonders of the ancient Egyptian civilization.

Exhibits of this grandeur are usually something you’d find in the halls of European museums. In particular, many people are excited about the fact that this exhibit offers an in-depth look into the entirety of the Egyptian culture.

Credit: Royal BC Museum

The overall verdict? Whether you’re an amateur archaeologist or someone looking for something to do this weekend, this exhibit should be on everyone’s must-see list.

The exhibit showcases history ranging from the Predynastic Era (5000-3000 BC) to the Greco-Roman Period (333 BC – 313 AD). Within these periods, the displays are then divided into sections illustrating aspects of average life for the Egyptian people. These sections include:

  • Landscape/Climate
  • Gods/Goddesses/Mythology
  • Pharaohs
  • The Citizens/ Private Life/Hieroglyphics
  • Architecture/Sacred Temples
  • Beauty
  • Funerals and the Afterlife

Many of the visitors seemed to favour the sections that focused on the mythology, the pharaohs, and the funeral preparations. That might be Hollywood’s influence since the movies tend to focus on these aspects, but it was interesting to see fact separated from fantasy.

Credit: Royal BC Museum

Here you get to see the complexities of a culture where most everyday things symbolized something far grander. Animals were not only food but sacred pets or the symbols of gods. The pharaohs were labelled the divine rulers of Earth, and the middlemen between the gods and people. The gods themselves were found in every part of life and held supreme power.

Each area of the museum was lined with dozens of artifacts, some of which are thousands of years old. Various interactive elements also exist, making this exhibit great for kids. The presentation of the content wasn’t overly text-heavy and offered lots of visuals. It was also easy to follow along with the story being told, as guests aren’t lost within a sea of technical terms and historical figures.

Credit: Royal BC Museum

Reading between the lines, however, the exhibit’s sections each uniquely address a few overarching topics. The themes of power, prosperity, and the struggle for eternal life follow guests throughout their visit. As a result, you leave the museum with a sense of curiosity regarding the secrets of the pharaohs and how history really came to be as it’s known today.

Credit: Royal BC Museum

To summarize my recent visit, I was left in awe of the incredible achievements of the ancient Egyptians. The very first sign you see once you’ve entered the exhibit perfectly describes what a guest will experience, with the statement, “Let’s Travel Back in Time.”

Credit: Royal BC Museum

Entrance to the exhibit is available as an additional purchase on our Victoria & Butchart Gardens Tour. See our Royal BC Museum Page for more information.

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