Tea love is a special kind of love. I find there are two types of tea lovers, the people who enjoy a good cup of tea, and the people who can’t live without their daily cup (or two, or three..) It’s my constant companion during good times and bad. Like a comfort blanket that is socially acceptable for adults.
It’s actually my obsessive love for tea that got me thinking about the possibility of planning a “tea-lovers getaway” to Victoria BC. Now this getaway is not be confused with a romantic getaway with your special someone. The special someone here is the tea.
Now that we’ve got that bit out of the way, let’s talk about the actual trip. I dreamt up this itinerary when Salma and I were in Victoria last year. We visited a number of tea places, but I also noticed a few others while we were walking around the city and thought how fun it would be to come back to Victoria just for the tea. If you are a fellow tea lover or want to plan a fun surprise for a tea lover in your life, check out my proposed itinerary/planning tips below.
TEA LOVERS GETAWAY VICTORIA BC – ITINERARY SUGGESTION
GETTING THERE –
Salma and I loved the experience of going to Victoria with Helijet, but for a tea lovers getaway, you’ll want to take BC Ferries. There’s something about a slow sailing start to the trip that feels perfect. Grab yourself a cup of tea at the on-board restaurant and head out to the exterior balcony or a viewing lounge, put your feet up and enjoy the view.
WHERE TO STAY –
The place to stay for your tea lovers trip is the Hotel Grand Pacific. They have a beautiful view of the Inner Harbour and the Parliament Buildings, and are walking distance from most of the tea experiences I’m going to suggest.
If you have little ones travelling with you, the Hotel Grand Pacific also offers a kids high-tea experience which I haven’t tried myself, but it looked pretty fun! Also if you need a palette cleanser between tea experiences, the coffee shop downstairs has a delicious hazelnut mocha (yes, I drink coffee too!)
Too really soak in the city and enjoy your tea experiences, I would suggest choosing 2 maybe 3 places to visit each day. You’ll want to leave yourself plenty of time to walk over to your next stop, and maybe do some window shopping along the way. The downtown core of Victoria is full of fun little places to poke around in.
EMPRESS HOTEL HIGH TEA
$75/pp (reservations required)
So this is the grand-daddy of high tea’s in Victoria, and there really is no comparison to the experience. If you can swing it, this is a must-do at least once in your life for tea lovers. I wrote in-depth about my experience at the Empress in this post, but I do have to say – the tea to try here is the Earl Grey.
No set price, order off the menu
I absolutely love the tea, pastries, and ambiance of Murchie’s on Government Street. In my opinion, they make the best London Fog in BC. I ordered a lavender London Fog the last time I was there, and it was spectacular! They also have the most amazing collection of tea related knick-knacks, tea cups, and teapots. They sell loose leaf teas to go also.
THE BUTCHART GARDENS AFTERNOON TEA
$38.75/pp (reservations highly recommended, especially in peak season)
Full disclosure, I have not been to this tea myself, but I’ve only heard great things! The menu looks amazing, and I can’t imagine a better setting. Since The Butchart Gardens are outside of the central area of Victoria, you’ll need to arrange for transportation. Don’t forget to give yourself plenty of time to walk around the actual gardens after tea. This could be a full day experience too.
TEA AT THE PARLIAMENT BUILDINGS
No set price, order off the menu
This really was the best discovery that Salma and I made on our trip to Victoria. The Parliament Buildings have a little dining room where you can order the most amazing pastries, and they have a special blend of house tea – it was so good! This is a must-do for tea lovers. After you enjoy your pastries, be sure to visit the inside of the Parliament Buildings too, they are beautiful!
THE TEAHOUSE AT ABKHAZI GARDEN
$12-35 p/p depending on selection
I ducked into this beautiful garden setting for a cup of tea when I was in Victoria for work a few years ago. Although I never sampled the full high tea menu, I do remember loving the ambiance and location. (It’s just a few blocks from the Hotel Grand). If nothing else, you have to visit this tea house to get all the romantic feels – it is after all inspired by a true story of a prince and his princess. (#hopelessromantic, I know)
SILK ROAD TEA
There is no actual tea service at Silk Road, but I still think it is worth a visit for tea lovers. They carry and exceptional range of loose leaf teas, and the staff are so knowledgeable. I enjoyed learning about the correct brewing times and storage for many of my favourite teas. They also have so many different types of tea, you are sure to find something to take home with you!
If you are planning a trip to Victoria soon, be sure to check out the site for Tourism Victoria for lots of great tips, itinerary suggestions, and loads of information on where to eat and play!