The best total immersion in nature "Victoriabc" I have to said is not enough words for said to Mark thank you for the Amazing tours. both are with full green nature is really lovely. all the places has the best view to see Victoria with more detail. he knows the most beautiful places to enjoy por complete your tour. Mark have a lot knowledge about everything in general, with great stories too. he is worries most of the time for you feel safe, is very kind and friendly, and for last but not less important, the incredible pics he took of me. is more than 100% of recommend you have to make those tours. Natural Beauty and Top of Gowlland.
Wendy M. Bogota, Columbia April 19, 2018
Fabulous morning hike - we had a great time with Mark. Mark collected us and dropped us off. Gave us great recommendations about other things to see and do. Our morning hike was excellent - beautiful views and Marks knowledge of the trees, flora and fauna and all that live there was great. Mark also takes incredible pictures which leaves you with fabulous memories. Highly recommend a trip!
Sharon R. Perth Australia April 16, 2018
Wonderful tour with Mark! He was very informative about history and his hike took us to breathtaking views and left us with unforgettable experience. My girls and I highly recommend him! Mark is also a professional photographer and the pictures he took were above and beyond our expectations. Everything is very reasonably priced and worth every penny.
Marina D. San Francisco, California, April 2, 2018
Many thanks for a great hike and for sending on the details of other things to do on vancouver island. The pictures too are amazing. We will definitely be coming back either next easter break or in the summer of 2019, so we will contact you beforehand.
Kevin F. London, England, April 1, 2018
Really really enjoyed this experience. Mark was so knowledgeable and an awesome photographer! Would highly recommend this trip for the incredible views!
Kam S. London England, March 28, 2018
The hike with Mark was enchanting and one of the best scenic hikes we have done. The natural beauty of the island is breathtaking. Mark was a caring guide and made sure we had a good time. He's also a professional photographer and the photos he took of us were truly amazing and a great souvenir. Don't waste a minute, book a tour with him. The most memorable activity we did in the island!
E.C. Lawrence, Kansas USA, March 23, 2018
Mark was amazing from our 1st inquiry to the moment he left us yesterday. Personable, attentive, informative & great fun! The attention to detail is greatly appreciated. The hike up Gowlland Tod was amazing. We recommend Mark & this trail & look forward to our next hike with him!
Terry C. Swift Current, Saskatchewan, Canada - March 23, 2018
We had booked a tour with Mark, and actually we did not really know where we started exactly. Fortunately, Mark had an extra pair of good shoes taken along for me. Because he thought it my slippery sneakers might be a bit tricky. Along the way he has in consultation with us should take some pictures. (He is a photographer) and these then processed and mailed at a reasonable additional cost to us. We are very pleased with the photos that witness our very nice and beautiful hike.
Teun T. The Netherlands, - March 19, 2018
We went on a 5 hour day hike with Mark Vukobrat with Hike Victoria. My 10 yr old daughter and I enjoyed the hike immensely! Mark shared entertaining stories about the history of Victoria, the foliage and made the trip a safe and fun experience. Mark is a professional photographer and if you want incredible photos of the scenic forestry, mountains and water in the background - this is the perfect trip for your family. Mark is very accommodating and super friendly!
Rabia K. Atlanta Georgia - March 13, 2018
The owner, and guide, Mark was phenomenal. He made our hike feel special and personal. The hike was not too easy and not too hard. We enjoyed the most gorgeous views I have seen on Vancouver Island. I am a local and have hiked many of the mountains in the area, but Mark was able to show us some viewpoints I would never have found on my own. His local knowledge about the outdoors was just right and very interesting. Thank you for a memorable Sunday hike and the beautifully captured photos!
Jessica T. Victoria, B.C. - March 11, 2018
I joined Mark from Hike Victoria for the walk up Galin Tod. It was fabulous - and not only because the weather was a perfect spring day. Mark answered all my questions about names of trees, history, geography, identified the birds flying by and to top it off led us to the places to get the perfect photos. He was a warm, engaging and genuine host and guide and I hope to return soon to do another adventure with Hike Victoria.
Veronica L. London England - March 11, 2018
Great day! From start to finish. Mark is a wonderful guide - and photographer. Very thorough. Very personable. We lucked into the weather. The scenery is gorgeous. And, I must say it is nice to have a beautiful photo of the day. Thank you.
Judy M. Ottawa, Canada - January 3, 2018
Top of Gowlland Tod Hike - Top of the world! This was a fantastic hike and one of the highlights of my trip to Victoria and BC. Mark was a terrific guide and took us on a 5 hour adventure (including breaks) through a beautiful forrest up to the outstanding views of the gorge. You need good hiking boots - particuarly in winter (there was some snow on the path still and there a quite a few rocks to scramble over). I would recommend this trip to both locals and visitors to the area. There is a maximum of 4 on this trip (I was joined by a great couple on the day). It was a good way to get out of downtown Victoria without a car and see a beautiful part of Vancouver Island.
Gail B. Brisbane Australia - Cecember 31, 2017
Mark was an outstanding guide during our hike through the Victorian forest. He provided interesting facts and took amazing photos throughout the excursion. I would recommend this hike for residents of Victoria and travelers who are visiting the area. The hike takes about 5 hours (includes a few breaks for photos, a snack, and information about the flora and fauna of Victoria). This hike is perfect for beginning and experienced hikers alike. Make sure to bring good hiking shoes (especially for winter hikes) and water, as portions of the hike are potentially slippery or icy. Also, while Mark takes great pictures, you may want to bring a small camera or smartphone to take advantage of the amazing views.
Ryan T. Portland, Oregon - December 31, 2017
The 27h of December, my parents and I went on a hike with Mark. But because there was so much snow on the mountain where we originally wanted to hike, Mark took us to a local hike, not far from Victoria. This was the best alternative we could have imagined. We did a hike to the top of a hill and the view was amazing. We saw the sea, mountains (even American mountains), Victoria itself and the entire neighbourhood around downtown. Then we went to some beautiful spots at the coast. My favourite stop was the one with the seals. The advantage of going with Mark was that he knows lots of interesting stories and information you would never find online or in a book. All our questions have been answered! We saw Victoria from a whole other prospective. One we never expected to see and you probably won't see without the knowledge of Mark. Additionally he took the most amazing pictures from me and my parents. Overall, it was a great experience!
Kaat V. - Belgium, December 27 , 2017
My family booked the Natural Beauty Tour with Hike Victoria which included various stops around beautiful Victoria, B.C. Mark Vukobrat was an excellent tour guide: communicative, kind, knowledgeable, and engaging. Although the weather was unusually cold, Mark had prepared us in advance with a list of suggested clothing and shoes to keep us warm. He provided us with a snack, checked in with us frequently about our level of comfort, and gave us an awesome tour that engaged my whole family. Pace, price, knowledge, and just good old-fashioned manners and kindness made this an excursion that my family will not soon forget. Thank you, Mark, for giving us this wonderful experience! :-)
Denise F. Austin, Texas - December 26, 2017
Definitely the highlight of my trip through British Columbia so far! Mark, the hiking tour guide, did such a great job with communication prior to the trip and during the hike. Although the weather was not great, I was still able to see some amazing sites and get some amazing photos from Mark which I will cherish for a long time! I will be recommending this experience to all my friends who wish to travel to Canada. Thanks for a great day, Mark!
Paul G. Brisbane, Australia - December 17, 2017,
Mark is an incredibly kind person who makes his guests' needs a top priority. For someone visiting Victoria without a car, this a wonderful way to get out into nature, to learn a bit about local history, flora and fauna, and to get some beautiful photos taken along the way (as an added bonus)! I would highly recommend this day trip to visitors or locals looking for a memorable day in stunning BC. I had a great time!
Corinne W. Seattle, Washington, December 13, 2017
Great hike with a great guide! I was visiting Victoria solo, without a car, in December. This hike was perfect because Mark picked me up and took me to the trail, which is mostly only known by a few locals. No one else signed up to hike when I was in town but Mark took me out anyhow, so I had a one on one guided hike! The hike was exactly what I wanted, good length, somewhat challenging terrain, and of course incredible breathtaking views! Mark is an excellent guide and photographer. He provided a yummy snack, hiking poles, backpack, and water. He also gave me great tips for the rest of my stay, including a bike route I could follow the next day on my own. I would highly recommend this hike to others!
Erin B. Minneapolis, Minnesota, December 10, 2017
Working with HikeVictoria was a fun, convenient, and amazing experience. My wife and I bought last minute ferry tickets to Victoria during the off season and wanted to see the Salmon-Run, I discovered Mike online and booked a tour the night before pickup. He called me immediately to confirm the time and location of pickup. This is very convenient and unlike any other company I saw. Mark will pick you up at your hotel!
Mark explained the history and culture of Victoria while we drove to Goldensteam Park. He is a wealth of knowledge and a wonderful person to chat with. We then walked around the park with him while he explained the spawning process. This is was fascinating!!! He showed us a great spot to watch eagles over the bay and then drove through the Fjords to get some great pictures of the area. Last, Mark took us to an incredible waterfall.
We weren't looking for a professional photographer, but we got one!!! Mark took great photos of my wife and I. He sent them to us the same day and they look great! We will definately be visiting Victoria again and giving Mark a call!
Terrance B. Washington D.C. November 29, 2017
Mark is the best person to hike with. He is incredibly knowledgeable about the area, knows all the secret viewing spots for spectacular views, and is a fountain of information about local history, fauna, flora, and practical advice for hiking safely. He is also very adaptable and can tailor the hike to your interests or offer alternatives if the weather doesn't cooperate for a particular portion of the tour (time permitting, of course. I got lucky since my schedule was very open and I was his only charge that day so we played it by ear). Mark is also a mindful guide, careful to watch for my pace and fitness level, takes breaks as needed, and is well prepared for weather and terrain. Besides the wonderful guide, the hike itself is fantastic. We started out the day with the Salmon Run Tour and I saw more salmon than I ever thought I'd see in my life. I learned a lot from Mark about their life cycle, spawning behavior, and anatomy (nature is mind-boggling). We also ended up seeing some bald eagles at the estuary portion of the tour. We then proceeded to the Top of Gowlland hike which is particularly great with an experienced photographer like Mark, who knew exactly where to go for the best views. The hike itself had some particularly steep stretches made more precarious by the wet weather but it wasn't anything difficult for someone in moderate shape. For the Top of Gowlland hike, I recommend wearing comfortable hiking shoes or sneakers and layers in case the weather gets finicky (we encountered a few showers during the course of our hike). The Salmon Run Tour requires very little hiking, mostly just walking. I highly recommend both.
Vinnie Z. San Francisco California, November 26, 2017
We did the the Victoria hike and salmon run with our guide Mark and it was totally worth it! Mark was such a nice and genuine guide and could answer every question we had. The salmon run was so interesting and i would recommend it to everybody. We were with 3 young girls and each one of us loved it. Mark also took amazing pictures and you can see that he goes the extra mile for the people that come with. It was an experience that we won’t forget! If we come back to Victoria we will definitely do another hike with Mark!
Maxime R. Brugges, Belgium, November 14, 2017
This was a fantastic tour. Mark sugggested the Salmon Run Tour as it only happens for a short period. We were picked up from our hotel. Mark was very knowledgable keeping us entertained during the whole tour. From the Salmon Run we continued for a short drive up the mountain to a great lookout then he took us to a beautiful waterfall. We added the Trestle/Rail Bridge hike to our tour which is really worthwhile. Mark was very aware of our safety and gave us several breaks on our way up to the bridge. The view from the top was spectacular. Mark is also a great photographer.
Julie T. Cowra Australia, November 12, 2017
We did the Salmon Run with Mark and added the trestle hike, such a great experience! Mark was very knowledgeable and made it such a fun and unique tour. The small group made it super personal and being driven around made it such a relaxing day as we were shown all of these amazing places in Victoria. I would absolutely, 100% recommend a tour with Mark to anyone, and if I ever find myself in Victoria again, I shall do another!
Nicola W. Sydney Australia, November 10, 2017
This was a highlight of my daughter's and my visit to Victoria. A short drive out of town and we were in stunningly beautiful mountains to see the salmon run and then a relatively short but steep hike to an old railway trestle bridge where the views are breathtaking. Mark is a great guide, helpful, very knowledgeable and full of amusing anecdotes. Almost immediately we felt as if we were walking with an old friend we'd known for years. A great way to spend half a day and we were blessed with the bonus of a black bear and 4 bald eagle sightings! Mark is also a gifted photographer and provided some beautiful photos of our trip.
Lesley F. Melbourne, Australia, November 3, 2017
Mark took the time to get great pictures of us and the views were amazing. Easy hike, not very tiring or difficult
Vivianna B. New Hampshire USA, October 9, 2017
Mark was so kind, helpful and explained everything from the minute we were picked up in his car until the moment we were dropped off back at our hotel.The day was just so enjoyable and we did the hike with another couple our age from Alberta; we are from Toronto. Just such an accomplishment for all of us to have reached the top and what a beautiful day; ending off with some beautiful photos that we will enjoy for a very long time. Mark, your photography skill have reached new heights. Thank you for giving us a memory that we will hold onto and cherish.
Brenda and Mark, Toronto, Canada October 2, 2017
Mark is an outstanding hiking guide and and also a really nice guy. He kept us entertained with fun anecdotes and shared his knowledge and history of the area. The Gowland Tod hike takes around 4 hrs but it is quite manageable and Mark knows every inch of the trail. The views were amazing. Would love to return to BC in the future and go on some of his other expeditions!
CFD62, Raleigh North Carolina, September 27, 2017
We did the tour of Victoria and the surrounds and had a great time with Mark. He was so informative and obviously loves the area. He took us to some great places with spectacular views you just wouldn’t see on other tours. We couldn’t believe how quickly the morning went. Would love to come back and do the other some other hikes with Mark.
Chris and Carol Anne, Wasall England, September 24, 2017
My fiance and I went out with Hike Victoria, and I cannot begin to express how much we loved our tour up to the top of Gowland Todd with Mark! He will take care of you every step of the way from the moment he picks you up until he drops you off; from providing hiking poles, snacks and water, to hiking best practices for the trail.
We are both locals and have not hiked in quite some time, but Mark made sure that we were going at a comfortable pace and was safety oriented. He is a very experienced guide with great stories and facts about the area. We could tell he loves what he does and was such a pleasure to have in our company.
Not only was the hike very enjoyable and the views at the top INCREDIBLE, Mark is also a fantastic photographer that will capture stunning photos of you surrounded by the best natural beauty Victoria has to offer. We will definitely recommend Hike Victoria to others!
Sophi M. Victoria, B.C. September 22, 2017
Wow, not sure where to start. Mark was an amazing guide and had great stories and interesting facts to tell you along the way. It went by so fast and we didn't realize we spent over 4 hours with him. He surprised us and brought us anniversary cake in his camera bag for us to eat with the beautiful scenery. You can tell the nature is his passion and so is his photography. Our pictures are phenomenal.
I would recommend this hike to everyone who visits Victoria.
Aline S. Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, September 22, 2017
We did two tours with Mark of Hike Victoria. The first was a hike up Gowland Todd to the top of the mountain. Mark is a very experienced hiker and knows the route well, so I felt safe because I'm more of a walker than a hiker and don't like heights. I really appreciated being picked up and dropped off for both our tours and Mark made sure we were fed and hydrated, also had hiking poles for our safety. Our second tour was a driving and walking tour. We spent two of our three days in Victoria with Mark. It made for a very enjoyable visit to Victoria, because we really got to enjoy nature and not just do all the typical touristy things.We found Victoria to be a very walkable city and with Mark's help, we didn't need a car during our stay.
Nancy B. Peterborough, Ontario, Canada - September 21, 2017
Mark was very accommodating, informative and fun. We had planned to hike Gowlland Tod but we had a couple of knee inguries in our group. Mark quickly changed course and took us to three awesome locations that were much easier to get to but still spectacular to see. I was very thoughful about our safefy on the trails and offered lots of advice. The photos he took of our group turned out great and make a fantastic keepsake of the experience. I'd definitely recomment Mark's services.
Taneill D. Medicine Hat Alberta, Canada - September 18, 2017
Great hike, amazing beauty and photo ops, fun information and nice people. This hike has everything you want for a memorable afternoon. Mark is the perfect guide- does everything to make you comfortable and make this a great experience.
Maureen, Little Silver, New Jersey - September 16, 2017
We had a great day with Mark. He was so accommodating and flexible in arranging our day. We hiked and visited some beautiful Victoria areas. We were on a girls getaway to Victoria and we wanted to be active. Mark took some great pictures for us to treasure.
Negrello, Lethbridge Alberta, Canada - September 15, 2017
Fun in the outdoors for our honeymoon Mark was spectacular as a guide, he was on time, gave thoughtful descriptions and made sure we had some 1:1 time together as well. We enjoyed our trek and even though there was a lot of smoke from the fires in the US, got some really nice photos too. The entire experience was very enjoyable and we were so glad we choose to spend our day with Hike Victoria!
Melinda H. Seattle, Washington - September 14, 2017
Gowlland Tod -- the highlight of our trip to Victoria! From the moment Mark picked us up from our hotel you could tell he wanted to ensure a great hiking experience for my sister and myself. He was very personable and put us at ease right from the get go. I particularly appreciated his concern for our safety and for providing us with everything we needed for the hike (backpack, walking stick, water and a snack). He gave us some pointers before we started, and as we walked along the trail he pointed out the tough spots and showed us how to navigate them safely. He shared his knowledge about the flora and fauna surrounding us, plus interesting tidbits about Victoria that really added to our experience. Best of all, he took some fantastic photos for us to remember the natural beauty of the fjord, Gowlland Range, and all the fun we had that afternoon. It's definitely not your usual touristy thing and I would recommend this to anyone visiting Victoria. Visit the Hike Victoria website for some "know before you go" info (what to wear, etc.).
YEGgirl - Edmonton, Alberta, Canada - September 13, 2017
The hike is enjoyable with having some level of fitness. Instructions during the hike were very Helpful. Photos were outstanding to remember this activity. Even tough we met Mark for the first time we felt we had known him for a long time, that's the easy effect he has on the hiking members. Having undertaken the Everest Trek some years earlier, this Trek was equally interesting along the way.
Joe A. Perth Australia - September 12, 2017
Tour guide Mark was fantastic! We hiked on a day that was drizzling & very cloudy, so we didn't go to the initial hike he intended, but because he knows his trails, he took us on some beautiful trails to a waterfall & an old railroad bridge with beautiful views! It is obvious he has a great love and appreciation for nature and Victoria. He also brought walking sticks & yummy snacks & water for us. Mark says that he hopes that his tours are the highlight of your trip, and I would say that he was right! He cares to give you a memorable experience. We love that he uses his photography skills to take memorable photos of you too. So worth it! A Must Do when visiting beautiful Victoria!
Michelle B. Mesa, Arizona - September 11, 2017
A great half day experience that truly opened our eyes to the natural beauty of Victoria. Mark toured us around various places of interest and shared his wealth of knowledge of his city. He catered the tour to my family's abilities (mixed age group of 27 to 85 years old) and made the most of the day despite smoke blowing in from BC's forest fires. Our natural beauty tour included a short hike in a douglas fir forest, vistas of the city from the top of Victoria, and the opportunity to feed seals at a harbour among other things. Definitely recommend this tour.
Gillian D. Waterloo, Ontario, Canada - September 11, 2017
TAKE THIS HIKE! Mark is a fabulous guide. Even if you aren't in the greatest of physical condition for a hike, Mark will make it so you don't even realize he's giving you time to rest and catch up. He's very knowledgeable of the area and the foliage, which makes everything so interesting. And, a great photographer, too. I can't say enough about this experience and about Mark. Disclaimer: I had never met Mark before the day of this hike...he's just that good. Oh, and those oat bars? To die for.
Teresa C. Pheonix Arizona - September 10, 2017
What a fantastic tour! Poor British Columbia had been battling fires over our whole trip and the smoke had socked in Victoria and Seattle. But despite the fact that the mountains were wiped from our view, Mark gave an excellent tour and showed us all the natural beauty of Victoria's shoreline and forest. I would HIGHLY recommend this tour as a way to experience the areas surrounding the city. It was a fantastic experience despite the smoke, I bet it's an A+++++ experience on a clear day. Which means book it no matter the weather. I'd have done this tour in a light rain even!
Troux North - Cap Cod Mass, USA - September 6, 2017
A must if you're in Victoria. A moderate hike that yields nothing but rewards, the views atop the peak are bar none in the Victoria region. Truly a hidden gem! The guide, Mark, has a superb depth knowledge of the region. As well, he crushes his goal of providing you with the best overall experience of Victoria and 100% makes your time with him the highlight of your trip! Overall, a must see during your time in Victoria!
K. Quick - Leamington Ontario, Canada - August 31, 2017
After a few days enjoying the beautiful Victoria harbor and the various gorgeous gardens, as a solo traveler who wasn't driving, this hike was a great intermezzo. The sights were all great and breathtaking....you can see from all the pictures. Our guide, however, he and his wife are beyond awesome! Mark makes sure the group is safe (and hydrated ;-)) and educates us about the history and flora and fauna which he knows very well. He is personal and makeseveryone feel totally at home. We were a group of 8 in the end, and everyone had a great time sharing many laughs. A ride with his wife Pam back was a delight, I came away with some great local recommendations. Go, take a hike!
LeeCJ30 - Singapore - August 30, 2017
Mark was a great guide. He made sure that we were all comfortable and was a wealth of information, both during the hike and for the perfect spot for a rewarding pint and lunch afterwards. The views were fantastic and I can see myself hiking this trail again, as he made it seem it was worth it in almost any weather. The pick up and drop off service is invaluable, as well as having water, snacks, backpacks, and walking sticks available for those traveling light. The photos he took turned out great! This was one of the highlights of my weekend trip!
Bassenav, Tacoma Washinton - August 28, 2017
Fantastic morning seeing some spectacular views from several spots. Excellent tour guide Mark was enthusiastic and informative . Great to meet some fellow hikers from USA to sure the experience.The walk was the highlight of our visit to Vancouver Island. Definite bonus having a professional photo to take back home will help us remember how special a day it was.
Helen M. Melbourne Australia - August 28, 2017
The hike up go Gowlland Tod had spectacular views. You can't get these views just anywhere in Victoria. Mark is a great guide with lots of information about Victoria, and looked after our safety up to the top and back down. Use the hiking poles that he provides, they will make your ascent faster and keep you from falling when going down hill. I would highly recommend Mark for anyone who is looking for a guided hike.
Thaihoctuan - Gilbert Arizona - August 25, 2017
My husband and I hiked to the top of Gowlland Tod with Mark of HikeVictoria and it was the icing on the cake of our visit to Victoria. Mark is a big nature enthusiast, experienced hiker and skilled photographer. He took great care to make sure we knew proper hiking technique and even loaned us some hiking poles. He brought water and granola bars to make sure we were hydrated and comfortable. We stopped a few times on the way up to take in the stunning views. Mark took several photos with a high quality camera and gave us a link to download them. They were very high resolution photos which were taken from unique angles, and captured the beautiful views in just the right light. Best of all, he made us look great in the photos!
Fordomni2017 - Austin, Texas - August 20, 2017
My family and I decided to try some hikes and stumbled upon Mark's website online and I am glad we did. He took us off the main trail a few times and took some awesome family photos of us. He knows all the right spots for spectacular views and photography. One of the highlights of our trip.
Jonathan V - London Ontario Canada - August 19, 2017
This was the 2nd time we took Mark's tour (our first one, 2 years ago, having been so awesome!). And (no surprise), we were not disappointed. This time, we went on a tour of the city of Victoria, and it was great--lots of beautiful views and history to take in. We had a fabulous time learning more about this lovely city. Kudos to Mark for continuing to offer such a fantastic service!
Roberta S. Orange County, California - August 18, 2017
Me and my partner were visiting Victoria for 1 and a half day and decided to do a local hike in the Victoria area and so we came across Mark and his company HikeVictoria. So we decided to go with Mark to the Gowlland Todd provincial park, and it was great! Mark is a really nice person and a good photographer. Both the scenery of nature and Marks knowledge of the area were really great! I would recommend this guided hike to everyone who are going to Victoria.
Carl N. Sweden - August 17, 2018
Mark showed our family an amazing 4 hour hike through Victoria. My parents (68 and 64 years old), my 2 children (10 and 13) and my husband and I all loved the hike. Mark was very informative about the trees and history of Victoria. I can honestly say out hime was the highlight of our time in Victoria and a must do for all ages if you are planning a trip. All of us loved it and couldn't stop talking about our adventure over dinner that night. The pictures Mark took were beautiful too. We can't wait to hang them through our house. Thanks again Mark and we want to come back to do it again.
Natalie N. Pennsylvannia, USA - August 17, 2018
Mark was a great tour guide. He took my fiance and I on the natural beauty tour and he drove us to 8 different places. We learnt a lot about the area and different things that we saw on the tour. He was very understanding and accommodating of our needs as I tore everything in my knee and was unable to do any of the hikes included with the whale tour. Since we booked the whale tour and hike he offered me the natural beauty which was a lot easier on my knee. He also took a bunch of photos of us since we just recently got engaged.We definitely recommend the natural beauty tour and I am sure any of his hikes are great. Thanks so much Mark for everything and we will definitely be back and hopefully we can book one of the hikes. P.S seeing that grey horned owl on our hike definitely made it that much better!!!
Kimburleah - Kitchener, Ontario Canada - August 10, 2017
The views were incredible in spite of the haze from the BC fires. Mark was absolutely excellent as our tour guide and photographer. We loved that we could enjoy our hike without having to do selfies..we didn't even get our phones out of our bags. Mark was very clear - safety first...he brought lots of water, Gatorade and a delicious oatmeal bar for all of us. We took breaks as often as needed. Mark had a lot of interesting facts about the history of the area as well as the trees, plants and wildlife. We had a really great time...Good workout, beautiful scenery, lots of laughs and an excellent memory from a really fun trip to Victoria! Highly recommended
Lesley C. Arlington, Texas - August 8, 2017
Our trip to Victoria BC was fabulous, and one Hike you don't want to miss is in Gowland Todd Park with Mark from Hike Victoria. Stunning views, great trails, and the best tour guide ever made this one of our top bucket list experiences. He provides backpacks, poles, water and snacks, just bring your hiking shoes and a love for the outdoors! Mark is also a very talented photographer that can capture all your fun and exciting moments on film! He recorded several group and candid's, as well as action shots that made us look very adventurous jumping off cliffs! (Faux jump!) This should be a definite YES on your to-do list while in Victoria! :)
Mavowell - Coppell, Texas - August 8, 2017
Mark is very friendly and charismatics. He provides snacks/water and has great how to hiking tips and very safety conscious. He lead us to some fantastic over views (despite the smoke) with commentary on the wood we were walking through. Mark's photography skills put this experience a step above a guided hike. He knows the unique spots to take photos and the skill to make the ones he takes amazing.
Seattlegirl - Seattle Washington - August 7, 2017
My husband, daughter (17 y/o), & I had a very enjoyable experience hiking with Mark & guest to see some of the beauty of Victoria. We found the views to be outstanding. It is definitely worth the short drive from the city. Mark provided pick up service, a knapsack (with water bottle & a delicious oatmeal bar) & walking poles...we only needed to show up in the lobby where he picked us up as scheduled & returned us at the end of the excursion. A plus to the day included a photo taken by Mark who is not only a knowledgable, pleasant host but an excellent photographer! Will definitely seek out Hike Victoria on our next visit!
Trummeltravel - Jacksonville, Florida - August 6, 2017
My first experiences dealing with Mark of HikeVictoria were positive when called me personally to confirm my hiking trip, and then when he came to pick me up from my hotel to personally explain the unique hiking conditions. I could tell that he sincerely wanted to make sure that I had a great experience and his passion for his work is a rare attribute these days. Mark was a true professional and wanted to make sure our group was safe by staying adequately hydrated and gave us tips about staying safe on the trail. The hike was strenuous at times, but certainly achievable by anyone with a moderate level of fitness and a positive attitude. Mark was very knowledgeable about the local flora and fauna, and his explanations were perfectly timed for much needed water breaks! At the climax of the hike, our group was rewarded with amazing views of the fjord in Gowlland Tod, and because I opted for the late afternoon hike, the descending sun offered incredible light against the mountain faces. The hike was incredible, but the main highlight of the trip was when Mark takes out his professional camera and starts taking photos of myself and the group to document the trip. I am not usually one who likes getting photos taken of myself, but Mark's professionalism and experience dealing with clients actually made it an enjoyable time. The resulting photos of the hike were spectacular and an enhancement to the already amazing journey I would recommend this hiking trip if you are visiting Victoria, not only for the excellent views of this beautiful landscape, but because of Mark's true passion for his work and photography. It's hard to find businesses these days that truly care about providing a great customer experience, but Mark surely delivers! Thanks Mark and HikeVictoria for an enjoyable time and photos that will get a lot of smiles for years to come!
RomaJaime - Clearwater, Florida - August 4, 2017
We had a great evening with Mark on this hike to the peak of Gowlland Tod park. Mark collected us from our hotel and drove us to the trail head where he provided water, snacks, walking poles and plenty of advice on how to handle to trail ahead. Mark allowed us to go at any pace we were comfortable with and pointed out some interesting facts about the flora and fauna along the way. While it was just the 3 of us, Mark allowed us to have plenty of time alone to enjoy the amazing views and take the while experience in. On top of all this, he took some amazing photos, some posed and others candid. We will definitely be framing a selection of these photos. Overall we cannot recommend this enough! It was a wonderful way to spend an evening on Vancouver Island.
Great Tour and Incredible Photos - Mark is a solid guide who is also a very talented photographer. I enjoyed learning about the history of how Victoria became the city that it is today, and also about the animals & plants that we encountered in the trails that we walked through. Mark is super friendly, professional, and knowledgeable. I highly recommend Mark if you are looking to explore Victoria outdoors!
-Caramello - Toronto, Ontario - April 13, 2017
Mark is a great guide and a wonderful person. The hike of Gowlland is a must see for anyone visiting Vancouver Island. The fjord, the trees, the lighting, and the beauty of the park itself were extraordinary.
-Luis K. - Mexico City - April 2, 2017
Mark picked up our family of four from our hotel and we spent the most of the day hiking in Gowlland Todd. Mark is super friendly and very knowledgeable about the local area flora and fauna and photography. We had two teens with us and they both had a fantastic time (my 13 year old son liked it so much he took the time to write his own review). We would highly recommend this tour to anyone wanting to enjoy the outdoor amenities surrounding Victoria!
-Nancy H. - Winnipeg, Manitoba - March 25, 2017
Mark took the four of us on a hike to Gowlland Tod where we had a picnic lunch. Our two sons (16 and 20 years old) and my husband and I had a great time looking at the scenery and talking to Mark. He knows a lot about the area's history as well as the different types of trees and plants. The hike was one of the highlights of our trip. He's also a fantastic photographer and we have his wonderful photos of our family with the amazing scenery that we can't wait to share with our friends and family.
-Susan S. - Prairie Grove, Arkansas, USA - March 20, 2017
Spent a day hiking with Mark from HikeVictoria and can honestly say it is a brilliant day adventure for anyone visiting Victoria. The hike is spectacular and Mark's knowledge of the fauna and flora is top-notch! Justin Walker Editor Aus Geo OUTDOOR
-Justin Walker, Sydney, Australia - March 10, 2017
I was recently visiting Victoria solo and wanted to go for a hike but not by myself. Mark was a wonderful guide and exceeded my expectations! He is not only very knowledgeable about the history of Victoria, the flora and fauna of the region, he is also a professional photographer. He was more than happy to share all his knowledge; including some valuable photography tips that I put to practice the next day in different locations he suggested I visit while in Victoria! He also took many awesome pictures of me in this beautiful scenery, great memories! Thank you Mark! I will definitely contact you when I go back to Victoria!
-Jessie L. - Gatineau, Quebec - March 3, 2017
Our family of four (two teenagers) enjoyed a wonderful afternoon hike in Gowlland Tod Provincial Park, with our guide Mark. The hike was probably the highlight of our week long Victoria vacation because of the stunning views, natural beauty of the area and the pleasant company of our guide. Mark is knowledgeable, considerate and extremely organized. He's also a real people person and from the moment we got picked up we felt that we were in good hands. The hike provided many breathtaking views and the climb for us was relaxed and the pace just right. It is a beautiful hike and for us the perfect way to spend an outing with the family. Highly recommend it.
-Jo Anne C. - Oxbow, Saskatchewan - February 27, 2017
Mark took us on a great hike, set the pace we wanted, and checked to ensure our comfort. The views were excellent and he took some good photos. It was an excellent experience.
-Tess V, Sooke, B,C. - February 26, 2017
Mark is an amazing guide with tons of knowledge and experience! He was able to personalize the hike and he knows where all the wonderful views are. I'm glad I was recommended to HikeVictoria. The experience was one of a kind and the photos were awesome too.
-Angela C. Brampton, Ontario - January 8, 2017
This was a fantastic day out. Mark went above and beyond to ensure we had the best experience possible, including adjusting our itinerary to wait out the weather. He was knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the landscape and we learned a lot about the local wildlife and annual salmon run. His pictures were great and we really enjoyed jumping around on the mountain for that perfect adventure shot. He was also full of helpful for things to do post-hike. A great adventure for our last day in Victoria.
-Charlie W. Salisbury, England - October 28, 2016
We had a blast with Mark on the Gowlland Tod hike! We loved the door to door service, there was a perfect mix of history & nature facts while hiking, and Mark made sure we were moving at a pace that was good for us, taking plenty of breaks when needed. Not only was the scenery gorgeous, but Mark takes pictures of you throughout the hike and offers them at a reasonable price. We had so much fun posing for goofy pictures, and we're very happy we have all of the pictures to remember such a wonderful day! We also opted to the the Cider Tasting at the end of the hike and were so glad we did! The Cider was even better than we thought it'd be and the lunch there was the perfect ending to the day.
-Tracy K. Chicago, Illinois - October 10, 2016
We spent a lovely afternoon with Mark hiking in the Top of Gowlland Tod Park. As promised, the views are quite spectacular! Mark was a wonderful guide. He provided us with water and snacks, great commentary and even better photos. I highly recommend doing this hike if you get the chance! :)
-Daniel M. Sydney, Australia - October 6, 2016
I had the best afternoon on the hike to the top of Gowlland Tod. I really enjoyed the small group size (only myself and another couple). The tour guide/owner Mark shared some very interesting information about the area and history, and was extremely attentive to the group. He ensured we had frequent rest/water breaks and pointed out which areas of the track to walk on so we didn't slip over, and of course took us to the best spots to view the breathtaking scenery. You don't have to be super fit to go on this hike and enjoy it, I found the 3-4 hours just breezed by. I also had so much fun with the photo opportunities - hanging upside down in a tree and the jump shot. I would highly recommend this as an awesome afternoon out for any visitors or locals of Victoria BC. I am looking forward to my next tour with Mark in a few week's time - The Salmon Run Tour.
-Angela P. Melbourne, Australia - October 6, 2016
We recently had the opportunity to visit Victoria for the day as it was one of our ports on our Pacific Coastal Cruise. We booked in advance with Mark the Gowlland Tod Hike. It was definitely one of the high points of the entire 12 day cruise.
Prior to our arrival , Mark was very responsive to our emails and confirming our arrival date and time. Mark met us at the port to begin our adventure. He provided us a back pack, a walking stick, water and the best oat bar I have ever tasted. On the drive to the trail head, he told us great stories about Victoria, pointed out sites and even engaged us in a US political discussion. Once we got to the starting point he gave us a lesson on how to use the hiking sticks and other safety pointers. Despite all the hiking I have done, I did learn a few good tips.
The hike was magnificent and the views were incredible. Mark is a very skilled photographer . He got some awesome pictures of us that we will be printing and framing. I actually look like I am cliff jumping!
You can tell throughout the entire hike that Mark loves where he lives and loves his job and the people he gets to meet.
Mark takes his time along the hike to take pictures, and explain the fauna. Additionally, he provides several opportunities to rest and watches the pace of those on the hike.
We completed the hike by 1:30 pm and still had the afternoon in town.
I would highly recommend this hike to anyone visiting Victoria.
-Nicole A. Fort Lauderdale, Florida - October 2, 2016
I entered the wilderness with Mark, a very friendly, informative and helpful guide and photographer. I enjoyed very much every moment I spent with Mark and learnt much from his historical review of the region and his insights of natural phenomena we ran into during our hike. Mike was taking my photos at breathtaking observation points throughout the park and I made some cool photos thanks to his help.
-Shai M. Telaviv, Israel - October 1, 2016
This day out was irreplaceable! We could not have shown ourselves around and discovered as much about Victoria. Mark's enthusiasm for his city shines through with his knowledge and gentle sense of humour. The views were stunning and involved some reasonable exertion.We had a chance encounter with the Royal Children while feeding harbour seals at a local marina, we were asked to not take pictures!
-Charlene S. Peterborough, Ontario - September 26, 2016
Based off of the positive reviews I saw on TripAdvisor, I decided to book a hike with Mark on a recent trip to Victoria. From the initial inquiry to see if he had openings, all the way through the follow-up from Mark with pictures, it was a positive experience and one that I would highly recommend to others who are considering taking a hike while in Victoria. My husband and I went on the hike to Gowlland Todd and we were in a group with two other people. After Mark picked us up and drove us to the hiking location, he provided us with water, a backpack, snack and even a hiking stick! The pace of the hike was just right. We stopped several times while he gave us some safety tips, information about the history of the location and also some information about the trees and plants that we passed along the way. Mark took some wonderful photos that we have as souvenirs of a wonderful day and captured the scenery perfectly. He even gave us some great recommendations for sightseeing and restaurants for our last day in Victoria.I wish we were closer so we could join him on his Salmon Run tour! Thank you, Mark for a fabulous hike!
-Melissa F. Hartford Conneticutt - September 26, 2016
Thank you for a wonderful experience, very rememberable. Plenty of trail, forestry information and scenery that was breathtaking. Constant attention to safety of all hikers. Having professional photo's taken along the way was a bonus, these will be treasured. Looking forward to doing it again on our next visit.
-Yvonne W. Airdrie, Alberta - September 21, 2016
Hike was amazing. Mark is very knowledgeable about the area, and didn't push too hard. The trail full of small challenges, but not too difficult even for someone that has never hiked. Mark also took some great photos for us to remember our day. We had lots of fun and breataking views. Definitely something I would do again.
-Paula D. Airdrie, Alberta - September 21, 2016
Mark provides a guided walk up to several spectacular viewpoints above Gowland Tod just outside of Victoria with informative and off beat commentary about the local history, fauna and flora. The walk itself is short in distance but with decent elevation and amazing views across the Saanich inlet.A lift from your accommodation to the trail head plus a tasty snack is all included as is a photo from the trip and if you're interested in photography Mark has excellent guidance to getting the best shots in the area. My girlfriend and I really enjoyed the hike and we can't recommend hike victoria enough.
-Jim H. Manchester, England - September 18, 2016
I would recommend hike Victoria to everyone,Mark is a really great guide,who is very knowledgeable about the history,flora & fauna & geography of the area.He only takes small groups 4 people max. so you really get the one on one experience.He is also a professional photographer and you get one free picture included in the price of the hike or you can buy the package of photo"s for a reasonable price.The hike itself was amazing,My fiance and I went on a really clear day so we saw beautiful views of the fiord"s and the mountains.The hike itself wasn't too hard but there were a few tough spots but we went at a pace that suited everyone's fitness levels.All in all a great day out at a very reasonable price.
-Dan F. Calgary, Alberta - September17, 2016
This hike was just what we were looking for! Mark was quick to respond to our inquiry before the trip and told us what to expect. What an excellent guide! We would have never found this beautiful hike and views on our own! We felt safe the entire hike since Mark knew the route so well. Such invigorating exercise without being too strenuous. He was full of information on the area, was friendly and amusing. What a great guy! The views were spectacular and Mark's photographs were stunning! This was the highlight of our trip to BC! We highly recommend Hike Victoria!!
-Nicole P. Saginaw, Michigan - September 17, 2016
Our hike was above the Gowalnd Tod.Totally beautiful and inspiring. Mark the guide loves what he is doing and made the trip special. He has an excelent personality and knew how to set the pace for us...medium. Fantastic grasp of the history to go along with what you see. My wife and I are still talking about that day. We plan on going back sometime soon.We would plan on a spring hike and see what else Mark has in his bag of Victoria's wonders.
-Gary L. Huntington Beach, California - September 16, 2016
My wife and I honeymooned on the island and I found this guided hike with Mark that seemed perfect for us! When I inquired, Mark quickly responded and was extremely informative and helpful in organizing it for us and explaining what would be needed. He picked us up from our hotel in Colwood and was friendly and informative. We drove to the hidden trailhead and he prepared us with lots of water, snacks, and safety gear.
The hike itself was beautiful and moderate in difficulty. On the particular day we went, it was the hottest day of the year, but we took it easy, Mark leading the way with steady and gentle determination. We stopped at many picturesque locations along the way and each one surpassed the other. Mark took many fantastic photos and we had a great time! It was a beautiful and fun and one of the highlights of our trip! I would definitely recommend it to anyone going to Victoria who has a free afternoon. Such an amazing time! 10/10
-Zach S. Edmonton, Alberta - August 27, 2016
Mark is a knowledgeable and charismatic guide who is quick to point out minute details in unexplored areas of Victoria's nearby parks. He uses his expert familiarity with the area to create a magical hiking experience with insider tips, historical facts and indigenous plant identification. For anyone looking to experience more of Victoria than just the city sights, Hike Victoria is a wonderful introduction into the hidden little gems, such as Gowlland Tod. Make sure to eat an oat bar!
-Carrie B. Victoria, B.C. - August 25, 2016
Coming off a long haul flight from Sydney, we found Mark’s ‘Natural Beauty’ tour of Victoria the perfect antidote: some gentle walking combined with local sights and engaging interpretation. Similarly, the next day, Mark’s “Top of Gowlland Tod” tour proved to be just what we needed to stretch our legs in preparation for a hiking holiday in Newfoundland – and introduce us to some stunning Canadian (Vancouver Island) scenery. It was a pleasure to spend time with Mark. His local knowledge, friendly style and professional photography skills combined to ensure an especially enjoyable and memorable experience. Thanks again Mark, and the photos just received are terrific!
-Carol E. Hobart, Tasmania, Australia - August 23, 2016
My wife and I were visiting Victoria for the weekend from Seattle and wanted to do a hike and were considering renting a car until we came across HikeVictoria.com. We called the number and Mark was able to accommodate our schedules and he took us on a wonderful hike we would have never found on our own. On top of leading us on a fabulous hike, Mark provided us with all sorts of history and information on the area that we would have never otherwise had learned (but he also asked us ahead of time if that was of interest to us ... he didn't bore us with info we were not interested in!). Finally Mark took absolutely wonderful photos of us during our hike and even thought us a little about photography along the way so hopefully we take better photos in the future. All in all, well worth the cost and so glad we didn't end up renting a car and trying to figure it out ourselves!
-Martin B. Seattle, Washington - August 20, 2016
We thoroughly enjoyed our morning's hike with Mark. He's a knowledgable and affable guide who quickly got to grips with our capabilities and interests. He clearly knows this trail really well so we always felt in safe hands. He also took a series of beautiful photographs of us, which are a lovely reminder of the morning. Would happily recommend the experience.
-Simon B London, England - August 12, 2016
When we booked this adventure we were unsure what to expect. Mark surpassed all our expectations! We were picked up at our hotel in downtown Victoria is a pristinely clean car. On the way Mark told us some interesting facts about the area. When we arrived at the trail head Mark had everything we needed including a small backpack, water bottles, hiking sticks, and an oat bar. It took about two hours to get to the peak (~1,300 feet) with breath taking views along the way...and the best part way that Mark is a gifted photographer and he took picture all along the way. We ended purchasing 44 great photographs. It was the best value experience we had during our 4 day stay.
-Rob M. Charlotte, North Carolina - August 3, 2016
We were staying at the Brentwood Bay Resort and the concierge told us about Hike Victoria. We went on the Gowiland Tod hike and saw some jaw dropping vistas. Hiking was moderately challenging ,but definitely doable for even weekend warriors. Mark was super friendly , knowledgable and gave helpful safety tips along the way which I appreciated. Best part of the trip is he is a photographer and we got to take some unique shots that were super fun! He also gave me some photography tips and we were able to purchase professional shots for a reasonable price. Definitely a must do if you are in the area!
-Cathy C, Irvine California - August 2, 2016
Mark was an amazing guide! He picked us up at our hotel at the exact time promised and everything after that point was far above our expectation. We were a little uncertain of the terrain as we had our 4 year old son and 6 and 8 year old daughters with us but Mark paced the hike perfectly to their skill level! The views were amazing, like none we had seen before, his patience with our children was a treat and his willingness to explain what he was doing with his camera was beyond our expectations. This is an amazing tour for anyone wanting to explore Gowlland Tod, learn some neat photography techniques or just get some really cool pictures taken. We were thrilled with the tour and the photograph's we received! Thanks Mark!
-Brian P. Stettler Alberta - J