Downtown Victoria Population: 85,792 (as of 2016, according to 2016 Census)
Condominium Benchmark Price: $466,500 (as of Dec 2018, according to MLS® Home Price Index)
Townhouse Benchmark Price:$622,600 (as of Dec 2018, according to MLS® Home Price Index)
Single Family Home Benchmark Price:$825,700 (as of Dec 2018, according to MLS® Home Price Index)
URBAN MEETS METROPOLITAN
Downtown Victoria is as urban and metropolitan as Vancouver Island gets! Unlike the concrete and high-rise jungles of other larger cities, Downtown Victoria manages to offer the best of city life without sacrificing the tranquil appeal of Island living. When it comes to Downtown Victoria, you can have both! Historical buildings, modern residences, cherry blossom trees, a bustling harbour, the songs of seabirds, and fresh ocean air are all part of the package. It’s just one of the reasons Victoria is so cherished by tourists, snowbirds, and year-round residences alike.
Downtown Victoria Location
85% CITY + 15% ISLAND LIFE
Walkable access to the Inner Harbour, excellent shopping, and over 376 restaurants, bars, pubs, cafes, and food trucks located throughout downtown.
Live close to the action and excitement of the downtown core, galleries, museums, music festivals, and nightlife. Several parks, waterfront walkways, the Inner Harbour, and outdoor areas to stroll and explore.
Enjoy the most convenient access to work and play, and a direct route to the University campus. Easy access to many of the city’s services including groceries, health, and fitness facilities.
Walkability and Bikeability
Downtown Victoria has a Walkscore of 97, making it the 2nd most walkable neighbourhood in the Capital District. Downtown Victoria is considered a “walker’s paradise” because nearly all errands can be accomplished on foot. Cyclists will appreciate the many dedicated bike lanes positioned throughout the downtown core, and paved biking and walking trails passing through Downtown Victoria and outside districts.
Many condo buildings allow for pets and there are plenty of areas to walk your dog on-leash within the downtown core. Moreover, there are many parks within walking distance from downtown that offer designated dog off-leash areas. Visit Victoria's Paws in Parks for a complete list of 13 leash-optional areas located within Victoria.
A variety of townhouses and condos in Victoria’s downtown core are modern and spacious enough to comfortably accommodate small families. Plenty of outdoor areas, playgrounds and bike lanes to enjoy, plus easy access to amenities, make downtown attractive to small families. However, busy thoroughfares make the downtown core unsuitable for young children that aren’t accompanied by a parent.
Unsurpassed walkable-accessibility to shops and restaurants, and the convenience of living just steps away from everything the downtown core offers, makes living in Downtown Victoria ideal for active and social seniors.
Key Landmarks & Amenities
Parks & Outdoor Attractions
While there are plenty of outdoor attractions and walkways to stroll within Downtown Victoria, you’ll find even more parks, playgrounds, and trails located just outside the downtown core, such as Summit Park and the large Topaz Park (which has a dog off-leash area), as well as those located in neighbouring districts.
Refer to this comprehensive list of Victoria's many activities & attractions, as well as nightlife & entertainment compiled by Tourism Victoria for a rundown of just about everything Victoria has to offer. Following are just a few of the most notable outdoor parks and attractions located within the downtown area:
The Capital Region’s famous, historical, and post-card-picturesque Inner Harbour represents the heart of Downtown Victoria, BC. Deemed "one of the most beautiful harbours in the world." Besides affording views of The Empress Hotel, Parliament Buildings, and a working harbour, Victoria's Inner Harbour also features a well-lit and paved boardwalk that is beautiful to stroll both day and evening. The lower walkway of the Inner Harbour features moored recreational vessels and small boutiques and eateries at either end. A popular spot to enjoy performances by buskers and artists in the summer months, and a lovely place to stroll regardless of the season. It's a real gem to have in your neighbourhood. Find out more!
Canada's oldest Chinatown and second oldest in all of North America, dating back to 1858. Have fun exploring the restaurants and shops, indulge in a fresh honey bun from one of Chinatown's bakeries, and take a stroll down Victoria's equally famous Fan Tan Alley. Find out more!
Expansive town square featuring City Hall, McPherson Playhouse, a large fountain and plenty of room to hosts seasonal events. Find out more!
Historical town square located in the heart of Downtown Victoria and fringed by some of Victoria’s best restaurants and pubs. Hosts a lively public market during the summer months. Find out more!
A newly built playground for kids, located behind Victoria's Court House. Find out more!
Stroll the wharf lined with colourful floating homes, friendly seals, harbour ferries, and some of Victoria's best food vendors. Enjoy the view from the small grassy park that features a children’s playground, and benches. Find out more!
Paved waterfront walkway with bench seating along Wharf Street and lovely views of Victoria's working harbour. Find out more!
Downtown Victoria is part of Greater Victoria School District No. 61 which includes 27 elementary schools, 10 middle schools, and 7 secondary schools. Following is a list of public as well as independent schools and programs offered within the Downtown Victoria area:
Sir James Douglas Elementary: Public elementary school located just outside of Downtown Victoria that offers instruction in English as well as early French Immersion to students from K to grade 5.
Central Middle School: Public middle school that offers dual track instruction in both English as well as early French Immersion to students from grade 6 - 8.
Victoria School for Ideal Education: Independent school offering small class sizes and a nature-based education to students from K to grade 8.
Libraries, COMMUNITY CENTRES & FACILITIES
Large public library located in Downtown Victoria at 735 Broughton Street. Find out more!
Located downtown on Broughton Street and features a large gym, weight room, squash courts, pool, and drop-in sports as well as offering childcare, and various community programs to children, teens and adults. Find out more!
Located in neighbouring district of Esquimalt and includes a pool, weight room and more. Find out more!
Arts, Cultural Attractions & Festivals
From community events, comic con, and yoga in the park, to cultural festivals, fundraisers, street markets and art programs--when it comes to festivals and events, Downtown Victoria hosts far too many to list. Check out this events calendar from the Downtown Victoria Business Association for a complete list of upcoming events. Following is just a sampling of some of downtown's signature annual events and attractions:
Impressive by day and breathtakingly lit up at night, the Parliament Buildings overlooking Victoria's Inner Harbour provide an ambiance that never gets old. You’ll also find a large, grassy area that's perfect for picnicking. The Parliament Buildings offer free, guided tours to the public every Mon - Fri from 8:30am - 5:00pm. Find out more!
The famous and prestigious Empress Hotel is one of the most iconic hotels in the world. Built in 1908 by the Canadian Pacific Railway and carefully restored, The Fairmont Empress attracts tourists and locals alike for its charming tea room, restaurants and cocktail lounge. The Public is always welcome to enjoy a stroll through its lobby and main floor. Find out more!
Foodies rejoice at this delicious event held every January at the Victoria Conference Centre. Sample the fare of local chefs, wineries, and craft-brewers. Meet and mingle, and enjoy a host of live entertainment. Find out more!
A Victoria hotspot for over 36 years. Hermann’s Jazz Club showcases multi-generations of live and local jazz, swing, blues, and Dixieland talent as well as rotating guest performers. Find out more!
Enjoy the offerings of local artists, musicians, performers, and vendors on select Friday and Saturday evenings in July and August at Ship Point (below the Visitor Centre on Wharf Street). Find out more!
Held annually, on August 5th in Victoria's Inner Harbour. This free, community event kicks off at noon with plenty of family activities and fun, followed by an evening of music by the Victoria Symphony as they perform from a floating stage. A magnificent fireworks display concludes the evening. Find out more!
A great big annual, four-days-long music festival held at multiple venues across Victoria. The event takes place every summer - actual dates are announced several months in advance and feature live performances by several indie artists. Tickets sell out fast in advance! Find out more!
An annual event hosted every July in Downtown Victoria’s Centennial Square. Features cultural performances, music and activities the whole family will enjoy. Find out more!
Artifacts, archives, over 1000 pieces of art, and rotating exhibitions that reveal British Columbia's rich, nautical history, dating from 1775 to the present day. Find out more!
Hosted every February on Chinese New Year's Day in Chinatown. Come ring the New Year with luck, health, wealth, and happiness with firecrackers, paper dragons and cultural performances. Find out more!
Every Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday in May through September, downtown's Bastion Square hosts treasures from local artists, vendors, and craftspeople. Find out more!
Hosted over a six-week period every April through May. Talented local students of dance, music, and performance-arts showcase their best in events across Victoria. Find out more!
Retail, GROCERY & DINING
When it comes to serious shopping and dining, nothing beats Downtown Victoria. Downtown Victoria has far too many shopping and dining locations to list, but following are a few of downtown’s most cherished shopping and dining hotspots.
Hosts season festivals as well as a variety of unique shops, boutiques, cafes, restaurants, and a craft beer eatery in a heritage town square that reflects the old-world charm of Downtown Victoria in its earliest days. Find out more!
Over 90 popular stores and boutiques to explore on the inside and outside of this mall located in the heart of downtown. Find out more!
Arrive hungry and prepare to be delighted. Il Terrazzo quite possibly serves the very best in Italian-inspired fare while offering a romantically rustic ambiance and perfect wine pairings. The flavour journey is exceptional, the prices are reasonable, and the portions are plentiful. Find out more!
World famous Pagliacci's on Broad Street offers unique, Italian-inspired dishes and drinks, playfully named after old Hollywood and Broadway stars and guests. There’s usually a lineup for dinner, so arrive early or try them for brunch. Find out more!
A local favourite for oysters prepared how you like them, cioppino soup, and comfort food that is anything but ordinary. Their chicken penne soup is something to be savoured - make sure to order extra rice dumplings! Find out more!
Offers some of the city’s most gourmet, wheat-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, and processed sugar-free, organic and vegetarian fare. Rich flavours and complex dishes are often fulfilling enough to please even a carnivore! Find out more!
When you want something super satisfying and flavourful, but without feeling heavy, experience the perfect fusion of healthy meets indulgent at Rebar. Rebar offers local fare prepared in healthful ways and infused with exotic flavours. They don’t serve beef or chicken and have. Find out more!
An Irish pub in the heart of downtown Victoria. Located at the Entrance of Bastion Square, it’s one of Victoria’s most popular and liveliest pubs. If you love good Irish music with your pub fare and brew, Irish Times will fast become your watering hole of choice. Find out more!
Located one block to the left of Irish Times Pub is something a little less Irish and a lot more Scottish, with kilt-laden servers, great food, live music, and whiskey (of course). Find out more!
The shopping district of lower johnson street, yates & Government Street
"Lo Jo” as the locals call it is a concentrated area of boutiques, popular shops, restaurants, and cafes. Don’t stop at lower Johnston Street though - while you’re there, explore the heritage of Market Square and venture to the next street over (Yates Street) before continuing on to Government Street where the shops and eateries continue.
For a guide to some of Victoria’s very best shopping, check out a complete directory of Victoria’s malls and shops here as well as Your Downtown Victoria, BC Shopping Guide curated by Tourism Victoria.
If you’re an avid shopper:
You’ll love all the independent boutiques mixed with popular retail chains and local vendors there are to explore throughout downtown. If malls are more your thing, downtown has The Bay Centre. Plus, there are three other malls: (Mayfair Shopping Centre, Hillside Shopping Centre, and Tillicum Centre), each located within a short drive from the downtown core.
If you’re hungry or thirsty for something delicious:
No matter what your palate is craving, you’re sure to find it downtown. Downtown’s plethora of wine bars, pubs, restaurants, cafes, and food trucks offer something for everyone, from ethnic eateries, steak & seafood houses, vegan gourmet, and local farm-to-table fare, to craft-beer serving gastropubs and swish wine bars.
Downtown Victoria has a Public Transit Score of 76 (excellent public transportation) with multiple routes that run from early morning to late evenings, shuttling passengers to and from the downtown core and other districts.
Within 15 minutes' drive to Victoria General Hospital and within 10 minutes drive to Royal Jubilee Hospital. | Within 30 minutes’ drive to Victoria Airport and Swartz Bay Ferry Terminal. | Within 5 minutes’ drive to Seaplane and Clipper Ferry terminals.
Iconic Condo & Townhouse
Victoria’s downtown core offers several condos and townhouses, some of which boast modern interiors while keeping a historical facade. Just outside of the downtown core is where more townhouses, cottages, bungalows, and character homes can be found. Downtown Victoria is continuously being developed, with new bike lanes, shops, attractions, and residential buildings. Following are just a few of Downtown Victoria’s most iconic condo and townhouse developments.
Close to the heart of Downtown Victoria, steps away from shops and the Inner Harbour and built in 2006, The Belvedere is a beautifully designed, 77 unit building offering 1, 2 + den, and 3 bedroom suites. Search our MLS® Victoria search engine for condos for sale in The Belvedere building.
Live inside one of Victoria’s most iconic buildings and what was historically home to the city’s original Hudson’s Bay department store. The Hudson has been lovingly refurbished, keeping its historical facade while offering 25 floors of luxuriously designed, mid-century modern meets modern-industrial 1, 2, 2 + den and 3 bedroom, pet-friendly suites. A variety of boutique shops, artisan cafes and eateries occupy the ground floor. Includes secure, underground parking and is located steps away from the downtown core. Search our MLS® Victoria search engine for condos for sale in The Hudson building.
Luxurious waterfront living at Fisherman’s Wharf and one of Downtown Victoria’s most iconic and beautiful condominium buildings. Built in 2003 with 10-floors and 161 traditional-styled units as well as commercial space, including a coffee shop on the ground floor. 1, 2, and 3 bedroom suites occasionally become available. The building has its own 25-metre indoor pool and gym. Search our MLS® Victoria search engine for condos for sale in the Shoal Point building.
Want to view discover new pre-sale opportunities?
Check out our Developments Page!
Shop for a Home in
Now is a great time to start looking for the ideal condo, townhouse or house for your family. Homes, condos and townhouses located within steps of the downtown core typically move fast, with many new buildings selling out before construction is even complete. Get started with your search today with a Real Estate Expert. Here are some tips and resources to help get you started with your search!
PROPERTY SEARCH TIPS
If you’re seeking a condo or townhouse that incorporates modern appliances with historical and industrial elements, when you use our MLS Victoria Search Engine to shop for properties in the Downtown Victoria area, also refer to the provided map for townhouses and condos for sale which are situated in and around Chinatown, Herald Street, Chatham Street, Wharf Street, Store Street, Market Square, and the Hudson Building.
If you’d prefer to live steps away from Downtown Victoria’s Inner Harbour, look for condos and townhouses for sale around Belleville Street, Humboldt Street and Fairfield Road.