One of my favourite places to photograph is Hatley Castle Gardens in Victoria.
It’s located on the grounds of Royal Roads University in Colwood, on the Westshore – about a 20 minute drive from downtown Victoria.
Aside from the gorgeous castle, the gardens are a haven in the midst of the city.
The castle was completed in 1908 and the gardens planted shortly after that. There are three formal gardens – the Rose Garden, Italian Garden and Japanese Garden. Each of those is connected with meandering paths through woodland, past ponds, streams and perennial borders.
The walled Rose Garden is a feast for the senses in summer. With roses of every description clambering along the walls and over trellises, the glorious scent and riot of colour is intoxicating.
The Italian Garden is next to the castle and is a formal, symmetrical layout. With statues and seasonal plantings it’s a popular spot for weddings.
My personal favourite is the Japanese Garden with its large pond, bridges and pavilion. Surrounding the pond are blossom trees, Japanese maples, rhododendrons and azaleas and a stunning white wisteria that provides the perfect spot to sit and contemplate the beauty. Spring and fall are the perfect seasons for this garden with cherry blossoms in spring and the maples changing colour in the fall.
There’s also a bog garden that’s home to an amazing fish ladder.
Daffodils and bluebells bloom with wild abandon in the early spring.
If you’re a garden lover and find yourself in Victoria, this place is well worth a visit. I come throughout the year to visit and there’s always something worth seeing….and photographing.
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