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Chinatown Victoria

Discover the passageways, temples, murals, shops and traditional Asian restaurants in this historic district established by Canada’s first Chinese immigrants.

In Chinatown Victoria you can admire historic architecture, sample traditional Chinese food or enjoy cultural festivities. This artistic part of the city’s downtown area is very popular with tourists. Come here to talk to fortune tellers, see Canada’s narrowest street and shop for unique garments.

From the mid 1800s onwards Victoria became a base for Asian immigrants looking for gold and labor in British Columbia. Many settled in the area around present-day Market Square and part of this district is still classed as Chinatown today. This National Historic Site is well preserved and has an authentic feel to it. 

A fitting way to enter Chinatown Victoria is through the Gate of Harmonious Interest, a 1981 monument dedicated to Canada’s multicultural society. A whole century older is the the former On Hing and Brothers Store on Fisgard Street. Look up at the street murals depicting scenes from the district’s past to see how the first Chinese immigrants lived.

Be sure to visit Fan Tan Alley, in the heart of Chinatown, to walk along the narrowest street in Canada. At one point the street is less than 3 feet (1 meter) wide. Originally the home of illegal gambling clubs and opium dens, this passageway is now full of quaint stores.

To see more Chinese relics, look for the Yen Wo Society Building on Government Street. Climb the 52 steps to the top floor to arrive at one of Canada’s oldest Buddhist temples, which is dedicated to the god Tam Kung. See worshipers kneel in front of the shrine to seek his advice on important personal matters.

Come back to Chinatown during one of its many cultural events, such as the weekly Night Market in summer. Sample soft dim sum (dumplings) and crispy lumpia (spring rolls) and watch Asian dance and martial arts performances. In January or February, the parades of the Chinese New Year celebrations entertain the crowds. Find a schedule of events on the Chinatown Night Market official website.

Located downtown, Chinatown Victoria is within walking distance of all major city attractions and public buses stop nearby. Pay-and-display parking is available in the district.


Guide to Exploring around Chinatown


Map

Best Lodging Options Near Chinatown

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Hotel Grand Pacific
Hotel Grand Pacific

Hotel Grand Pacific

463 Belleville St, Victoria, BC
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in James Bay, this romantic hotel is steps away from The Robert Bateman Centre, Victoria Harbour and Victoria Clipper Ferry Terminal. Royal BC Museum and Victoria Fisherman's Wharf are also within 15 minutes.

    Hotel Rialto CA $119
    Hotel Rialto

    Hotel Rialto

    653 Pandora Ave., Victoria, BC
       
      3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

      This family-friendly Victoria hotel is located in the entertainment district, within a 10-minute walk of Lower Johnson Street and Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre. Victoria Harbour and Royal BC Museum are also within 1 mile (2 km).

      Chateau Victoria Hotel and Suites CA $145
      Chateau Victoria Hotel and Suites

      Chateau Victoria Hotel and Suites

      740 Burdett Ave, Victoria, BC
         
        3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Downtown Victoria, this eco-friendly hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Maritime Museum of British Columbia and Royal BC Museum. Victoria Harbour and Victoria Clipper Ferry Terminal are also within 15 minutes.

        Victoria Regent Waterfront Hotel & Suites CA $158
        Victoria Regent Waterfront Hotel & Suites

        Victoria Regent Waterfront Hotel & Suites

        1234 Wharf St, Victoria, BC
           
          3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          This family-friendly Victoria hotel is located in the historical district, within a 15-minute walk of Lower Johnson Street, Victoria Harbour and Royal BC Museum. Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre and Victoria Clipper Ferry Terminal are also within 15 minutes.

          Delta Hotels by Marriott Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort CA $159
          Delta Hotels by Marriott Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort

          Delta Hotels by Marriott Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort

          100 Harbour Road, Victoria, BC
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in the heart of Victoria, this spa resort is within a 10-minute walk of Pacific Rim College, Market Square and Bastion Square. Chinatown is 0.5 mi (0.9 km) away.

            Royal Scot Hotel & Suites CA $121
            Royal Scot Hotel & Suites

            Royal Scot Hotel & Suites

            425 Quebec St, Victoria, BC
               
              3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in James Bay, this eco-friendly hotel is steps away from The Robert Bateman Centre, Victoria Harbour and Victoria Clipper Ferry Terminal. Royal BC Museum and Victoria Fisherman's Wharf are also within 15 minutes.

              The Fairmont Empress
              The Fairmont Empress

              The Fairmont Empress

              721 Government St, Victoria, BC
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                This family-friendly Victoria hotel is located on the waterfront, within a 5-minute walk of Maritime Museum of British Columbia, Victoria Bug Zoo and British Columbia Parliament Building. Victoria Harbour and Market Square are also within 10 minutes.

                The Magnolia Hotel and Spa CA $159
                The Magnolia Hotel and Spa

                The Magnolia Hotel and Spa

                623 Courtney St, Victoria, BC
                   
                  4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Downtown Victoria, this luxury hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Government Street and Victoria Conference Centre. Royal BC Museum and Victoria Harbour are also within 10 minutes.