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Pacific Northwest Trip: Butchart Gardens, Victoria, BC

The Butchart Gardens is a large set of gardens in a former limestone quarry, in Brentwood Bay, British Columbia, near Victoria, on Vancouver Island. Mowgli and I spent several hours at the Gardens, with a new friend we met on the boat, and then took the 2nd last boat back to Vancouver and got in around 9pm (when many restaurants were closing, ooops). It was quite a pretty place. I took quite a few pictures.

Saturday, August 13, 2016.

Other pages from the Pacific Northwest trip:

Displaying all 101 pictures


The Ferry to Vancouver Island

Mowgli and I drove from Vancouver to the Tsawwassen Terminal and took the ferry to Swartz Bay on Vancouver Island. The ferries run every hour. We actually, ahem, missed the ferry we planned to take, literally by about 1-2 minutes. We parked, Mowgli went off to pay for the parking and I went to buy tickets. The woman there wouldn't sell me 2 tickets unless both of us were there, and by the time he arrived, they had stopped selling tickets. It wasn't that she was mean, it was that the boat was just about to leave. But it all worked out OK, we didn't wait all that long, and wound up befriending a traveler on the boat whom we joined while exploring the Gardens. Plus we got a free ride to the Gardens.

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A ferry at the dock.

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Our ferry approaches.

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Getting closer. It has two decks to carry vehicles.

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Mowgli sits by the stern of the ship, near where its flag is.

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From the bow, looking at the port (left side).

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And the starboard (right) side. The black chain-y thing is, I believe, its...(more)

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A few from the bow looking up at the wheelhouse. In the bigger version, you ...(more)

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Looking out at the Salish Sea. Before reaching and going through the islands...(more)

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Lots of water, the Pacific Ocean is not too far away.

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Looking back at the ferry's smokestack from the top deck.

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Ahead of us is Galiano Island and Mayne Island.

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An island looms ahead of us.

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Looking back at the port side of the ferry as we wind our way through the...(more)

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We wind our way cautiously between Mayne and Galiano islands (left and right,...(more)

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You never know what might be lurking around the next bend...

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"There she is! There she is! Ah... not so wounded as we were led to...(more)

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"FIRE!" (We didn't shoot photon torpedoes at the other ferry.)

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People on the bow, under the wheelhouse watch.

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Reasonable size boats look pretty small compared to us.

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Approaching the terminal at Swartz Bay.

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Mt. Baker in the distance. It looks superimposed on the horizon.

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In the belly of the beast. Car-go deck. Car-go...cargo. Get it?


Butchart Gardens

Ingrid, someone we met on the ferry who was touring the US and Canada, gave us a ride to Butchart gardens as that was where she was going. Saved us a bus trip and she didn't try to harvest any of our organs. The three of us explored the various parts of Butchart Gardens together. It's a very pretty, well organized place.

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Mowgli checking out a hanging basket of flowers at Butchart Gardens.

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Colorful roses.

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More colorful flowers.

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Now that's a shrubbery!

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The yellow of the tree leaves against the blue background looked cool.


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Panoramic shot of some of the colors on the high trees surrounding the Butchart...(more)


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The Sunken Gardens, the area that used to be a limestone quarry. Seen from the...(more)

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Arbor Vitae are on each side of the path of the Sunken Gardens.

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Sunken Gardens with the Arbor Vitae on opposite sides of the path.

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Looking up at a tall tree, with a green glow of light filtering through the...(more)

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Bears in tree form!

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Some sort of carved animal, a squirel or beaver or something.

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The little mini-cabin thing where I took the previous pictures, and people on...(more)

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More Sunken Gardens.

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A plaque with information about the Butchart Gardens.


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Panoramic shot of a pond (Quarry Lake).


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Black flowers...weird and cool.

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Close-up of the lilly pads in the pond.

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A manicured lawn in the Sunken Garden.

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Density of trees in the Butchart Gardens.

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The Ross Fountain in Quarry Lake.

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The water in the fountain shoots up 21 meters or 70 ft high.

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I'm not proud nor easily embarrased. I waited my turn to ride the bronze horse...(more)

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A totem pole in the garden. I wanted to get its shadow in the picture but not...(more)

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The fields beyond are where they launch fireworks on the weekends. We didn't...(more)

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The two totem poles.

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A "monkey puzzle" tree. The leaves are very sharp and it would...(more)

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The Dragon Fountain. It did not, however, shoot out fire.

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Highly manicured lawn. The holes are not for golf, but where sprinklers are...(more)

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A low shot of the manicured lawn.

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Narrow depth-of-field shot of a wishing well.

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The Star pond in the distance.

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The Sturgeon Fountain, with Mowgli and Ingrid in the background.

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Sturgeon Foutain.

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Ingrid stands at the entrance to the Japanese Garden.

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Ingrid and Mowlgi at the entrance to the Japanese Garden.

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Freaky tree roots that look like they should be animated, crawling.

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Hey, what's that visible in the hole in the bushes? Water and boats on the...(more)

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Mowgli checks out the view.

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Stepping stones in the Japanese Garden.

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A stone lantern in the Japanese Garden.

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A sort of water-wheel stick, that fills with water, then tilts down, draining...(more)

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Manicured bushes. Everything was really green.

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The sun made the tree's leaves have a sort of green fire quality to them.

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Frank and Ingrid. I had to play some exposure games so that both of our faces...(more)

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Tod Inlet visible from the Italian Garden.

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The Italian Garden with Ingrid thinking about diving into the pond.


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A 2-picture panoramic shot of the Italian Garden pond.


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Frank poses in a shrub door, pondering his options. It kind of felt like...(more)


Boat tour of Bay and Butchart

After the Italian Garden, Mowgli and I and Ingrid parted ways (after some much-needed ice cream), and then Mowgli and I took a boat tour of Butchart Bay and Tod Inlet, the area around the Gardens, which is a public park. The boat was all electric, so when we weren't going, it was completely silent. Neato!

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This was not our boat.

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This was our boat.

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First thing we saw was this sort of mini-house. ("Arr, why buy a house,...(more)

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The tree at the top of the treeline that splits in a Y-shape has an eagle's...(more)

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We passed a jellyfish floating in the water.

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Jellyfish.

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Jellyfish with its trailing stingers visible.

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The smokestack was from when there used to be a cement plant here. Butchart's...(more)

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A shuttlecraft from Star Trek is actually a birdhouse.

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Other birdhouses on the dock.

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On the rocks, just to the right of the clearing is a small black spot that is...(more)

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Signs warning boats to keep their distance because fireworks launch from nearby.

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Recent housing development on the hillside just beyond the bay.

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A boat moored in the harbor.

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The tour guide pointed out that there were seals visible from the other side...(more)

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The heads of two harbor seals are poking up in the middle of the water.

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Two harbor seals (mother and pup) poking their heads out of the water in the...(more)

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Heading back to the dock.

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Looking down the dock after we returned.


The Ferry back to the Mainland

After the boat tour, we stopped in the gift shop, then took a bus to the boat terminal and headed back to Tsawwassen Terminal and then drove back to Vancouver (the city). The sun was setting as we got to the terminal. Quite nice.

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Taken from the stern of the ferry as we leave Swartz Bay.

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A house on the island catching the light of the setting sun.

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Kind of hard to tell, but there are snowcapped mountains in the distance, like...(more)

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People on the top deck watching the sunset.

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I quite like this shot of the people on the top deck of the ferry watching a...(more)

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Sunset from the ferry.


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A panoramic shot of the sunset as we arrived back on the mainland.





This page last modified Dec 30, 2016.
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