Gonzales Hill Regional Park – Victoria

Gonzales and Ross bays Victoria Gonzales Observatory Gonzales Hill Park 7

This rocky urban wilderness park of the Capital Regional District has amazing views of the Victoria area like Clover Point, Government House, Craigdarrach Castle, Mt Tolmie, Mt Douglas and the Gulf Islands. The highest point of Gonzales Hill is sixty-six meters above sea level and has views of Trial Island and Lighthouse, McNeil Bay, Gonzales Bay and across the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Across the waters are the Olympic Mountains of Washington State, USA. Further east are Mt Rainer and Mt Baker. Part of Gonzales Hill Regional Park is in the City of Victoria who shares this hill top with Oak Bay Municipality. There are few benches throughout the park with one located near the summit. The views of the stars from Gonzales Hill once were further enhanced by the unique observatory that was built in nineteen fourteen for the Dominion Meteorological Services and used by Environment Canada for the next seventy five years. There are three trail accesses into the park. The main route, about a hundred meters to the summit or the observatory, is from the parking lot off of Denison Road. It connects with the thirty-five meter pathway up from Fairfield Place. The third pathway, about sixty meters long, is called Centennial Trail and zigzags down between the down the south side of Gonzales Hill to Barkley Terrace. There are stairs along the Centennial Trail access route. This area is frequented by dog walker, hikers and runners. Walbran Park is east along Denison Road and Gonzales Beach is down the hill.

Geographic coordinates N48° 24′ 48” W123° 19′ 30″

Gonzales Hill Regional Park can be reached from Blanchard Street. Turn east onto Fairfield Road and follow along to Fairfield Place or Denison Road. At the end of Fairfield Place there is a short trail up to the observatory with a limited roadside parking across from 1968 Fairfield Place. Along Denison Road there is a parking area near the observatory as well as the cairn for Walbran. City buses travel along Fairfield Road between downtown and the University of Victoria.

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