Butchart Gardens is the best place to visit in Victoria. However, since we had already gone there on a previous trip, we decided to go to the Royal British Columbia Museum. It was a very nice museum, including IMAX movies. We then walked around the lovely town of Victoria and had delicious tea and pastries at Murchee's - a favorite local tea house.
We took cab to the Chihuly exhibit - next to the Space Needle, if you have ever been to the Bellagio in Las Vegas or to the Borgata Hotel in Atlantic City, you will become a fan of,this amazing glass artist. The exhibit and gardens are beautiful and felt otherworldly. There is a monorail that you can take to the Pikes Market area, but we decided to walk. It was about a 30 minute walk from the Chihuly/Space Needle area to Pikes Market. The Market has the the most beautiful flowers, produce and fresh fish in one location. We found the original Starbucks near the Market, but we didn't want to wait on a long line, so we walked back to the ship.
We had a day and half in San Francisco. We docked at 3:00 p.m. and walked off the ship by 3:30. We walked over to Pier 39, which was about a 10 minute walk from Pier 35, where we were docked. Since it was a Sunday, Pier 39 was jammed. We were told that we would be able to see seals near the pier, but it was so crowded that we never found the seal area. We browsed the various shops, bought a few items and made it back to the ship for dinner. Some people took a night time tour of Alcatraz and really liked it. The next day we went on a private tour of wineries in the Napa and Sonoma valleys. Alan of Best Bay Area Tours picked us up (along with 4 other couples from the ship) right in front of the cruise terminal. He drove a 12 passenger van. Alan gave us a very good tour. He knew the area. I would recommend him for the tour we did or other tours of the San Francisco area. It was nice to be on a small van instead of on a large tour bus. We had lunch at the Sonoma Cheese Shop, but there were other very nice restaurants in the town center.