Residing halfway between the physically exertive adventures and the visits to landmark locations that are at your disposal around Villa Eyrie are a wide array of immersive experiences to give you a true sense of what makes Vancouver Island such a great destination to visit. All within an hour’s drive, contact our team to help you decide which is best for you and to plan your day trip.
(Self-Guided Grounds Tour)
Hatley Castle is a well-known monument in Victoria. The Castle was built in 1908 for a Lieutenant and his family and eventually turned into a naval military academy.
Although the guided tours are not running at this time, visitors are welcome to visit the gardens. Controlled access will be in place to ensure a 50-visitor capacity limit at this time.
Michell’s Farm is a family-owned and operated farm in North Saanich. They have a ton of organic, local produce to browse through, along with pasture-raised local beef. Their U-Pick Pumpkin patch is perfect for families looking to participate in a wholesome autumn activity.
Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre
At the western edge of the bucolic seaside village of Cowichan Bay in the beautiful Hecate Park lies this interpretive centre offering visitors a series of interactive exhibits that tell the story about the nearby 400-hectare estuary, the bay, the watershed and some of the wildlife inhabiting the ecosystem including migratory birds, Pacific salmon, shellfish and a diversity of intertidal life.
Duncan Farmers’ Market
Every Saturday morning, all year-round, rain or shine, come enjoy a taste of the Cowichan Valley! Here you will find a wide variety of local products from vegetables, baking, jams, jellies, honey, crafts, clothing, pet treats and even some goods from local wineries.
(Image courtesy of BC Farmers’ Market Trail)
A must-see attraction for anyone visiting the greater Victoria area, the Butchart Gardens is a charming, romantic oasis and worth a few hours’ stroll. Our guest services team members are up-to-date with admission rates, the exact hours of operation which vary by month and fireworks display times during the summer. They will help make all the necessary arrangements for your trip.
Just around the other side of Saanich Inlet and a short drive from Butchart Gardens, the popular Victoria Butterfly Gardens houses an indoor rainforest facility for 75 different species of butterflies and moths as well as many other types of as birds, lizards and fish. Our guest services team members are up-to-date with admission rates, the exact hours of operation and special events. They will help make all the necessary arrangements.
Westholme Tea Farm
The fertile landscape of the Cowichan Valley creates a unique microclimate that can sustain Canada’s first tea plantation which takes advantage of its unique position in the Pacific Northwest to guide production. Tour the farm to learn about their cultivation practices, with organic tea blends and handcrafted ceramics also available onsite.
With a variety of scenic courses throughout lower Vancouver Island, let us help you arrange a morning or afternoon tee time. We also offer preferential rates to guests at our partner Arbutus Ridge Golf.
Pacific Northwest Raptors
A conservation area for birds of prey just outside of Duncan, this is where you can get up close and personal with a variety of eagles, hawks, falcons, owls and more. The centre also provides several hands-on experiences that range from a one-hour encounter to a full day spent amongst some of the planet’s most majestic predators.
Open daily from 10:30am to 3pm (Entrance fee required; experiences extra)
Scenic Float Plane Trips
Sightseeing trips can be organized with easy pickups from Mill Bay or other nearby airports. With a variety of options at your disposal, you can fly over the Gulf Islands or inland over Lake Cowichan towards the West Coast, catching sight of lush temperate rainforests or some of the island’s most iconic waterfalls.
Vancouver Island is a renowned destination for private pilot license training due to its uncrowded sky. Recreationally, both Duncan and Sidney offer courses and charters as well as taster flights for those looking to operate an aircraft under supervision for a short time.