British Columbia Parliament Buildings

4.7(1210)
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Overview

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Tripshepherd
501 Belleville St, Victoria, BC V8V 2L8

Located in the capital of British Columbia, Victoria, the British Columbia Parliament Buildings are a must-see attraction for anyone interested in the province’s political history and stunning architecture. The buildings are home to the legislative assembly of British Columbia, where members of parliament debate and create laws to govern the province. Whether you are interested in politics, or history, or simply love beautiful architecture, visiting British Columbia Parliament Buildings is a must.

History

The British Columbia Parliament Buildings have a fascinating history that dates back to the late 1800s, making them one of the oldest legislatures in Canada. After a devastating fire destroyed the original Parliament Buildings in 1898, the government launched a competition to design a new building.

Francis Rattenbury, a young architect from England, won the competition with his striking neoclassical design blended with Renaissance styles. The construction of the new building took several years and it was officially opened by the Duke and Dutchess of Cornwall and York in 1898. Since then, the buildings have gone through several renovations and restorations to maintain their historical significance and architectural beauty.

Architecture

The Parliament Buildings are an architectural masterpiece, with their classical neoclassical design and ornate detailing. The buildings are adorned with intricate carvings, statues, and decorative elements, including a gold-leafed dome that is visible from miles away.

The interior of the buildings is equally impressive, with grand halls, marble floors, and ornate ceilings. Visitors can take guided tours of the buildings to learn about their history and admire the stunning architecture.

How to get there

The Parliament Buildings are located in the heart of Victoria, and visitors can easily access the buildings by walking, cycling, or public transport. The Victoria Public Transit System offers several bus routes that stop near the Parliament Buildings.

For those driving, there is limited on-street parking available, but several nearby parkades offer affordable parking options. But the best option might be to book a guided tour which includes direct pick up from your hotel so you don't have to worry about the hassle of getting there by yourself.

Best time to visit

The Parliament Buildings are open year-round and visitors can take guided tours from Monday to Friday between 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. However, the best time to visit is during the summer months, as the buildings are beautifully lit up during the evenings. Visitors can also witness the ceremonial Changing of the Guard that takes place daily from June to August.

Highlights

Apart from being a significant political landmark, the Parliament Buildings are a magnificent piece of art, with stunning architecture and intricate designs. The central dome of the building is a prominent feature, with the statute of Captain George Vancouver standing atop it.

Visitors can also admire the many sculptures and paintings that adorn the buildings, including the iconic Spirit of Haida Gwaii sculpture by Bill Reid.

Features

The British Columbia Parliament Buildings offer guided tours that are educational and informative, providing visitors with a glimpse into the province’s political history and governance. The tours are conducted by knowledgeable guides who are well-versed in the history and significance of the Parliament Buildings.

Visitors can also enjoy a bite to eat at the Parliament Dining Room, which serves a range of delicious dishes made from locally sourced ingredients.