It’s fun to explore a destination through a resident’s perspective. Whether this is your first or your fiftieth time in Oak bay, here are our insider recommendations for living like a local for a day.

When hunger calls, head to Estevan Village for some great Vancouver Island food compliments of Ruth and Dean. This quaint bakery and café is just a quick walk from Willows’ Beach and offers a tasty breakfast sandwich to pair with a Monogram coffee. You won’t be disappointed.

On the south part of Oak Bay, you’ll find many points of interest that you can enjoy by foot, by bike, or by car. Nestled on a quiet windswept islet you’ll find the Chinese Cemetery. Stand under the giant sentinels, enjoy the fantastic views of Washington’s Olympic Mountains and the lighthouse on Trial Island, and see if you can find the secluded Adirondack chairs situated on the beach rocks. A great spot to reflect and enjoy paradise.

Only a few minutes away from the cemetery, you’ll find Anderson Hill. A quick climb up to a perch amongst local Garry Oaks will reward you with stellar views of the Salish Sea. Take in the passing ships, the character homes that hug the coastline below, and admire the Gonzales Observatory to the West.

Oak Bay loves its coffee shops, but here’s one that has remained a well-kept secret. Within the Thorn & Thistle flower shop on St. Patrick’s Street you can find Libra Coffee. Grab your cuppa Joe, pick up some fresh florals and continue your explorations.

While you could spend all day taking in the West Coast beauty of Oak Bay, leave a little time for yourself to do some treasure hunting. The main avenue is home to a curious collection of vintage shops that are full of great finds. Get ready to find the luxury resale goods and accessories, along with great furniture and knick-knacks from a bygone era.

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