Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Snapshots of Victoria, BC // Day 2 // October 2014

On our second day in Victoria we woke up, checked out and ventured out into the city. We couldn't help but take our time walking past the harbor, parliament building, and The Empress. So much beauty in this city!
We made it out to a coffee shop called Mirage Coffee and hoped that we would have better luck than our terrible coffee the day before. Luckily Mirage Coffee has some of the BEST coffee we've had while traveling!
In addition to our coffee we each got a pastry (man, we ate a lot of pastry...). I got a blueberry square and KC got a chocolate croissant (his usual). I didn't know what to expect from mine, but it was EXCELLENT!
In addition to the great food and coffee, the atmosphere at the coffee shop was great. Large paintings, pedestals, and statues, I liked the style very much.
After that we began walking around the city again.
We headed into some of the shops that we had missed the day before. We started at Munro's Books, a beautiful bookstore, where I browsed and browsed the books, gifts, magazines, and stationary.
I purchased a few things including an Emily Carr's (a local artist) first book 'The House of Small'. I'm really excited to read it.
After that we visited some other nice stores. Violette was a very fun store filled with jewelry, stationary, and wall art. The girls working there were very friendly, we had a chat about the Wizard of Oz (of course.. :) ) and how fun it is to buy stationary.
Then we visited a great vintage consignment boutique called Duchess & Duke. I wasn't in the market for vintage clothing, but looking around the shop was a real treat. The design, from the door way to the cash register, is impeccable.
There were so many fun vintage touches, I especially loved the red door and mail box combo, and the wall collage.
We walked a bit more before we made it to what our shuttle driver the night before had recommended as 'a huge thrift store,' called 'Value Village'. I don't think we were quite prepared for the hugeness of this place. For reference, it was the size of a Walmart grocery section, but filled with incredible amounts of items to thrift. It was a Tuesday afternoon but it was packed. There were people everywhere, it was again pretty clear to me that Canadians (at least in Victoria) are much more willing to buy used items. It is really incredible and makes for great shopping with a better selection.
We purchased a few Canada pins, a Chinese waving cat ceramic, and a bunch of souvenir spoons. KC has collected souvenir spoons since he was a kid, so we try to pick them up as we travel. Sadly, the spoon selection is usually pretty unimpressive, and each spoon costs nearly $10. Finding vintage spoons is always great, they are much cooler looking, better made, and so much cheaper! We got four bags of four spoons each for $12. Such a score, and I am dreaming up ideas for the excess spoons (of places we haven't visited yet).. stay tuned for that.
We grabbed lunch at Willie's Bakery & Cafe, the 'oldest bakery in Victoria'. We had brunch food, waffles and... ? The atmosphere in the main room was great, the muffins we saw looked amazing, but our food was just ok. The waitress also seemed pretty impatient which was too bad. I think going back for baked goods would be a good idea, as I have read that they are really good.

After that we soaked up more of the city. I stopped back at a shop to purchase a slouchy knit scarf (FINALLY!), for just $12.
We also stopped by Rook & Rose, which looked beautiful, sadly we didn't need any floral arrangements.
Lastly, we visited Knickers, a really beautiful lingerie shop. It was very airy and clean in the design. My favorite thing were the lovely wall collages (can you tell I have a thing for wall collages?).
We walked back to The Empress and went inside to walk through the shops. We didn't see much of the inside, but the lobby was pretty plain. The area near the dining rooms was much more beautiful. On one side of the building they had an Empress shop that included china and throwback postcards. We got a golf poster postcard to send to my in-laws (golf lovers!), and I didn't get an Empress china coffee cup... but maybe I should have. (I'm an obsessive mug collector... )
We ventured through the hallway shops and the convention center where a few more totem poles were placed. I apparently really love totem poles. - I suppose that is because that is not something you see much in the Midwest.
We wandered around the garden at the Empress, the harbor area, and past the parliament building once again.
We checked out of our hotel, and made sure to take photos with Stewart the Scottish bear. :)
Then we walked back to the cruise port and headed back to the US. This trip was at night, but before it got too foggy and dark the view was incredible!

Missed Day 1 in Victoria? See it here.

Stay tuned for Seattle posts!

What do you collect on your travels? - aside from memories and photos of course!

Thank you for reading!


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