Best Day Trip from Victoria, BC Botanical Beach, Plus Black Bears on the Beach

by Melissa West on

Black Bears on the Beach

Botanical Beach is one of our absolute favourite day trips from Victoria. You have to check the tides before you go to make sure you are going to have access to the beach. (Click here for a tide checker)

It is a 2 hour and 15 minute drive from Victoria, but it is a beautiful one. Oh, and you are going to want to pack a picnic and lots of water. Outside of Shirley Delicious Cafe in Shirley, B.C. there really isn’t anywhere to eat around there as far as we know.

If you know of any good places to eat around Botanical Beach, let us know in the comments!

When you arrive at Botanical Beach it is about a 15 minute walk through the beautiful forest down to the beach itself. Black Bear and Cougar can be present so it is always suggested that you exercise caution on the trail and pack out your garbage. 🙂

When the tide is out you will be able to see incredible inter-tidal life. There are congregations of sea stars, purple sea urchins, Chitons and anemones in the tidal pools. You go from tidal pool to tidal pool, looking at all the wildlife that would normally be completely submerged in the ocean.

The geology is incredible as well. The main tidal pools and sculptured formations are formed out of soft sandstone. Some of the tidal pools are created by wave-tossed bolders grinding out pockets in the sand stone. Purple sea urchins grind out smaller pockets in the tidal pools themselves.

The sandstone cliffs are beautiful.

Besides staring into the tidal pools and the shape of the landscape, there is plenty to watch in the ocean as well. I could spend hours watching the high waves crash against the rocks. Orca Whales and Gray Whales migrate from Mexico to Alaska between March and April. It is not unusual to see California Sea Lions and seals as well.

On this trip to Botanical Beach a Mama Black Bear and her cub ambled out onto the beach while we were there.

We spent about two hours hanging back, out of their way and watching them as they ate their way through muscles, seaweed and grass.

It was a pretty incredible experience.

Photos of the Black Bear and her Cub


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