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Victoria, a city with a rich and lengthy gardening history, is best known for its great showpiece, Beacon Hill Park, at the base of Douglas Street.
A pair of masts set on a hill to serve as a beacon and navigational assistance for seafarers approaching Victoria’s inner harbor inspired the name of Beacon Hill Park. It was named a Municipal Heritage Site in 2009.
Visitors can enjoy the natural regions, well-kept flower beds, rocky gardens, pathways, and numerous sports activities here.
Due to its extensive First Nations heritage, Beacon Hill Park is regarded as having archaeological significance.
It has several known and potential sites, including a notable old First Nations Burial Ground on the southeast slope of Beacon Hill.
The 200-acre parcel of land was set aside by James Douglas, the governor of Vancouver Island, in 1858. It was designated as a park in 1882.
Beacon Hill Park is conveniently accessible via Douglas Street, Dallas Road, and Cook Street and is situated south of Victoria’s Central Business District, between the Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Strait of Georgia.
The park’s main entrances are east of Douglas Street, between Southgate Street and Dallas Road.
Nearby hotels, motels, and tourist destinations in Victoria’s Inner Harbor are easily accessible on foot from the park.
3. Parking and Traffic Management
Bridge Way from Heywood Way to just east of Chestnut Row opens to two-way traffic shared by cars, bicycles, and pedestrians.
Also, they have improved access to central washrooms for people with special needs.
Chestnut Row and Arbutus Way are still only open to service cars and are designated as pedestrian and bicycle lanes.
The park has more than 300 parking stalls available. Around 20 stalls have been upgraded with new designs and infrastructure.
4.1. Flora and Fauna
The park has numerous things to offer. It is filled with beautiful and exotic trees such as Western Red Cedar, Birch, Arbutus, Douglas–fir, Garry oak, and Viola praemorsa.
It preserves and cares for endangered ecosystems such as Garry Oak, Viola Praemorsa, and Yellow Montane Violet. You can find a couple of Bald Eagles nesting and an active heronry in a copse of Douglas fir trees.
The Moss Lady, 11 meters long and 1.7 meters high, is behind the bandshell on the west side of the park, close to Douglas Street.
4.2. Beacon Hill Children’s Farm
The animals you will meet there are Jacob sheep, goats, miniature donkeys, a potbelly pig, alpacas, ducks, chickens, budgies, finches, pheasants, peacocks, and doves. You can also get to play with some of them.
Fountain Lakes and Pond Lilies of Goodacre can also be seen in the field. A variety of waterfowl will greet you there.
4.3. Other Attractions
The park also has playgrounds, spray parks, tennis courts, golf, a cricket pitch, a picnic shelter, a baseball diamond, a rose garden, and a Cameron bandshell stage.
Sailboarders, paragliders, and kite-flyers can enjoy the clear view across the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
Remember, it has the world’s tallest free-standing totem pole. Famous Kwakwaka’wakw artist Mungo Martin produced the 38.8–meter (128-foot) work of art in 1956, and the pole was restored to its former glory 46 years later.
Beacon Hill Park is a location manicured with a diverse ecosystem, bridges, lakes, farms, and rock gardens for you and your family to enjoy. Beacon Hill Park is a special place and home to many rare and endangered ecosystems.