Quick stats …
- hours from Vancouver
In the area …
3 -bed, 1-bath house in Oak Bay
Top-notch health care and a climate that is the envy of all of Canada has long made Southern Vancouver Island a favourite relocation destination. As B.C.’s provincial capital, Victoria is a government town; add in the University of Victoria, Royal Roads University and CFB Esquimalt and you have a well-educated professional class with stable income and an affluent lifestyle. While urban Victoria is associated with formal architecture and tony gardens, the dozen or so towns and suburbs of the Capital Regional District offer everything from waterfront living on The Gorge Waterway in Esquimalt to hobby farms and ranches in North Saanich. The verdant neighbourhoods running from Mile Zero to Cattle Point might be the most stunning stretch of waterfront property in the province. Access to the Lower Mainland is courtesy inter-harbour flights and frequent ferry sailings, convenience that does come at a cost. Still, if you’re pocketing an extra $500,000 or so from the sale of your Greater Vancouver home, the move is financially viable (and there are seniors’ discounts on B.C. Ferries for trips back to the mainland).
Voted one of the Top 10 cities in North America by readers of Travel+Leisure magazine in 2015, Victoria is wildly popular with tourists, who stroll Butchart Gardens, take high tea at the Empress Hotel and tour Craigdarroch Castle, home to a 19th-century coal baron. During the summer months, the Inner Harbour, Beacon Hill Park and the lawn of the B.C. Legislature pulse with humanity.Sanctuary is close at hand, with literally hundreds of parks and green spaces dotting the South Island region. Eagles, killer whales, black bears and deer thrive in this ecosystem. Dozens of rivers, lakes, streams and sheltered bays invite a lifetime of exploration. There simply is not another city in Canada, perhaps even North America, quite like the Queen City.
Work: A retiring generation creates plenty of opportunities for young professionals and entrepreneurs, not just in the civil service but at schools, hospitals and universities.
Play: The Inner Harbour is home to hundreds of sailboats and powerboats while rowers from nearby private schools ply waters like placid Elk Lake.
Culture: Surrounded by Sir Francis Rattenbury’s Provincial Legislature, the Fairmont Empress Hotel, and the Royal B.C. Museum, downtown Victoria is a history buff’s dream.
Municipalities & Districts:
Victoria – www.victoria.ca
Note: Population is listed by either municipality or region. Sample listing represents a home near the median average selling price in 2017. Real estate trend metric uses B.C. Assessment data for value and includes sales of all property types.