Kayaking & Canoeing
Family kayaking (Dave Heath photo)
Kayaking in Victoria offers the accessibility of an urban centre as well as hidden coves, secluded spots, the challenge of open water and an abundance of marine wildlife.
Victoria is almost completely surrounded by water and its location on Vancouver Island's southern tip creates several great paddling locations.
To the southwest is the Juan de Fuca Strait, which opens to the Pacific Ocean and is home to boat-access only Discovery Island Marine Provincial Park. To the southeast, Haro Strait leads to dozens of small islands and islets. Victoria's Inner Harbour and the adjacent Gorge Waterway allow kayakers to begin saltwater adventures directly from downtown.
For smooth paddling, the Gorge Waterway provides a narrow, protected inlet. Meanwhile, Elk, Beaver and Thetis lakes offer beaches, forested trails and calm waters further outside the city core. Other popular paddling areas include Cadboro Bay, Sidney, and Sooke.
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