Book your excursions early for Victoria. We thought we could book the horse and buggy ride after getting off the ship, but it was completely booked. We ended up doing the hop-on, hop-off bus tour. We had a great bus driver. The taxi drivers at the port want to take you to Butchart Gardens because it is a 50-minute drive (one way), which means more money for them. We had to be insistent with our taxi driver because we only wanted to go downtown. If you do the hop-on, hop-off bus tour, make sure you bring a jacket. The back of the bus is open (no top) and it gets cold when the bus gets going. The bus does a 90-minute loop through Victoria and there is a narration throughout most of the loop. We really enjoyed the tour, but a few of us ended up with head colds from sitting in the cool wind.