Tuesday 23 July 2013

Vancouver Island: Victoria, Bug Zoo, Butchart Gardens, Butterfly Gardens

To Vancouver Island (via ferry from Tsawassen to Swartz Bay)!

Literally the last car on the ferry :)  Car loading is very organised and efficient.  Ferry is very comfortable, had a cafe, sun deck, and a small kids play area.

Good views on the ride to the island

The Victoria bug zoo is tiny, looks really amateur, but is surprisingly awesome.  I held a tarantula, a giant hissing cockroach, a scorpion, and a huge millipede!

Victoria reminded me a little of Hobart

Butchart gardens is a major (if not the biggest) tourist drawcard for Vancouver Island.  It's huge and beautiful, you could easily spend a whole day there.

Before (a spent quarry)

After (a multi-million dollar tourist magnet).  Note the cliff on the right now covered in plants.

After Butchart we hit up the Victoria Butterfly Gardens.  Not bad, but I've seen much better at Cairns (which has the advantage of being in the tropics).  They import all/most of their butterflies from Costa Rica, which somehow seems more depressing than a butterfly farm where they are grown on-site.

E liked the flamingoes more than anything else :)

An Atlas moth caterpillar .  We didn't get a decent photo of the adult moth but they are massive, largest in the world!

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