Navigating A Re-Opening Victoria
Posted by Niels Madsen on
It’s been a long slow journey, but in BC at least, we are finally starting to see a cautious reopening of the world around us. This means greater freedom to get outside, to use local businesses, and to travel further distances - but all of course while observing safe distancing and hygiene practices.
With Phase 2 of BC’s response to the Covid-19 crisis having progressed smoothly, we will soon enter Phase 3, which means looser restrictions on travel and movement - according to BC Premier John Horgan.
During this phase, we will all be able to expand our ‘bubbles’, multiplying the circle of friends and family we can gather with.
To celebrate this, we’re going to look at what this means for you, and us, as well as spotlighting some of our favourite businesses and local gathering spots where you can meet other members of your bubble.
Phase 2: What’s Allowed Right Now
Having been in place since May, Phase 2 of BC’s Covid-19 response has very much gone according to plan.
During this time, we’ve seen schools, businesses, and other services reopen to the public, all while adopting careful distancing and hygiene measures. It may not be a return to normal - but it has been a return to a world that still has the heart and soul of the Victoria area we all know and love.
Now that we’re deep into Phase 2 (and about to move on to Phase 3), it’s a great time to take stock of some of the fantastic businesses that have reopened, hopefully giving you some ideas for your next socially distanced day out!
If you want to browse for yourself, try this handy directory of all the businesses that are currently open in downtown Victoria.
Food And Drink
It’s at the top of everyone’s most missed activities - whether it’s that flaky sumptuous patisserie or the complex notes of a masterfully brewed cup of coffee -there is no substitute, and certainly no homemade option, that can top Victoria’s collection of independent cafes.
Thankfully, many of them are now offering takeaway services, so you can enjoy a scenic socially distanced walk with your favourite brew or snack, such as those from Shatterbox Coffee, Empire Donuts, Fol Epi, or the QV bakery.
Alternatively, the celebrated Victoria Public Market is now reopened at reduced hours, and with social distancing measures in place.
For more substantial meals Victoria has a huge selection, from the fantastic Bin 4 Burger Lounge, Don Mees, Spinnakers Brewpub, The Irish Times Pub to Zambri's - all are making an effort to do safe in-person dining experiences.
A Walk In The Park
Once you’ve sated your appetite, you’ll be able to once again enjoy the magnificent parks and green spaces of Victoria.
You can stroll and bask in the exotic delights of the Butterfly Gardens, with their spectacular range of flora and fauna, enjoy a refined afternoon tea at the Abhkazi Garden, or explore all 200 acres of the magnificent Beacon Hill park.
If you want something a little more high-octane, then as a part of Phase 2, many recreational facilities throughout the area have begun reopening, meaning you’re able to hit the basketball or tennis courts if you’re getting bored with your home workout!
A Gallery View
If the great outdoors isn’t what you’re looking for, then you still have plenty of options, with many of Victoria’s most noteworthy galleries and museums open for business - giving you and your bubble the chance to enjoy some much needed calm, introspection, and culture, all in safe socially distanced environment.
Phase 3: What Does It Mean For You?
We don’t yet have the full details regarding the scope of Phase 3, but we do know that it will be implemented gradually, with an eye on ensuring that everyone remains safe, and that we’re still focusing on ensuring there are no new waves or peaks in the infection rate.
However, comments from provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry have indicated that Phase 3 will include reopening movie theatres, spas, hotels, resorts, as well as allowing overnight camping in parks and increased range of travel.
Exploring BC Again
Once all the guidelines for Phase 3 are in place, people in Victoria will be free to once again explore the scenic outer reaches and magnificent towns and attractions of British Columbia- something we know you’re all desperate to do.
This also means being able to take advantage of the reduced services on offer across BC’s many transport networks, including the still operational BC Ferries, who are running a low traffic service with a number of screening procedures in place to ensure the safety and wellbeing of their passengers.
These screening procedures are in compliance with guidelines issued by Transport Canada and will apply to anyone travelling on a route which takes longer than 30 minutes to complete. Screened customers will be expected to answer a series of Covid-19 symptom-related questions.
Included in these services are routes serving the scenic Southern Gulf Islands and Salt Spring Island, meaning you can once again take a day trip to some of your favourite island BC destinations. For more information on the complete schedules of routes and services currently in operation, you can visit their website.
Here at Madsen Langlois, we’re here with you every step of your journey, even if the property ladder isn’t at the forefront of your mind right now, To find out more about the services we’re continuing to offer, and our plans for the future just get in touch.