Nestled in the heart of Victoria Downtown, Bastion Square is a remarkable pedestrian mall flocked by tourists for its history and uniqueness. As you enter through the ceremonial arch, you will be welcomed to the first Fort Victoria. Bastion Square, back in the days, housed gallows, brothel, and even a jail. Most of the stone buildings located here are refurbished to offices, restaurants, bars, and boutiques. Facing the stunning Inner Harbour, the square has a plethora of things for one to visit. Some of them include art galleries, markets, cafes, historic mansions, and more. Now, if you are wondering what to do when you plan a visit here, make sure to check this guide to Bastion Square to have a fun experience.
Things to do / highlights
Once you have made it through Bastion Square in British Columbia, Victoria, Canada, you will notice there are plenty of beautiful attractions nestled here. It is filled with art galleries, markets, Victorian buildings, and more. And among them, some of the famous attractions in Bastion Square are:
A Victorian-era L-shaped mansion, Burnes House is inspired by the Italianate-style architecture situated in the Bastion Square, in Old Town Victoria’s heart. Built in 1887, this historic three-story mansion’s frontage faces towards the Square and also features bay windows, decorative cornice, and the main entrance.
Board of Trade Building
Built in 1892, the Board of Trade Building is a four-story historic building situated on the southern side of Bastion Square in Victoria, Canada. The building was constructed to display a historic power and importance of the British Columbia Board of Trade.
Bastion Square Public Market
Nestled in the center of Downtown Victoria, Bastion Square Public Market is a bustling Sunday market where visitors and local vendors and artisans come together. Visitors get to go through an array of items provided by the potters, leather workers, fashion designers, and many other artisans.
What to eat
Wind Cries Mary
Nestled within the rustic beauty of Vancouver Island, in the heart of Old Town Victoria, and just a five-minute walk away from the Inner Harbour in Bastion Square, Wind Cries Mary is a farm-to-table restaurant offering visitors lip-smacking meals. The restaurant serves family-style dishes with ingredients bought from the local fishermen and farmers. While here, try the fried chicken, caraway bread, pork belly, and house-cranked sausages among others. The restaurant also serves a good deal of desserts, wines, and cocktails.
A delight for vegetarian and vegan lovers, Rebar is a contemporary eatery spot with a chill vibe, making this a nice spot to grab a nice meal accompanied by cool drinks. Blackened rockfish burger, rebar salad, quesadilla, and almond burger happen to be some of the renowned dishes at Rebar.
How about a tasty cup of hot Joe? Cafe Bliss is renowned for serving a range of vegetarian and organic fare, smoothies, coffee, and juices amidst a cozy setting. Along with offering vegan dishes, the cafe also serves wheat-free, sugar-free, and dairy-free bakes.
These are some of the crucial tips that you need to have a wonderful experience in Bastion Square:
Budget shopping: The shops located in the square sell either cheap souvenirs or expensive clothing. Ensure you have a proper budget if you are planning on shopping.
Awesome grubbing: The restaurants and bars here get quite crowded. So, make sure to get to the restaurants a little ahead of time and grab a nice spot.
Visiting: The best time to visit here is from April to November when the markets at Bastion Square is in full swing.
How to get there
Are you planning to head to Bastion Square, but don’t know how to make your way around? There are multiple ways to get to Bastion Square for all kinds of travelers. You could take a walk, go cycling, or use the bus. Now, let’s take a look in detail of some of the preferred ways to get to Bastion Square.
One of the most fun, convenient, and easiest ways to get around Bastion Square is by using a bicycle. Victoria is a bike-friendly city with nice paved and bike pathways all across. There are plenty of bicycle rental shops available where you can rent a bicycle for a day or multiple days.
Walking is a great way to soak in the city’s history and rich culture. And Victoria is a city steeped in both. There are a good number of flattened walkways easy to walk on. So, walking to the square and the nearby attractions make it the easiest options to explore the area. There are several walking tours available, as well. You can check them out at third party booking websites, such as Viator.
If you are not keen on walking or biking, then hopping on a bus fits the bill right. There are regular buses that will take you to this famous attraction. Other than this, there are several tour buses that operate in the city taking tourists to famous landmarks and off-the-beaten paths.
You could also opt for the cab services in Victoria. If you don’t like waiting for the cab on the streets, then you can even call ahead from any of the taxi services and arrange for the ride.
Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
Bastion Square information
Address: Bastion Square, Victoria, BC, Canada
Department of tourism: Tourism Victoria
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