I really like Sooke! As soon as you leave Victoria and come into this friendly region of the south-western side of Vancouver Island, it feels like you’ve stepped into a whole new province. What started out as a home land for the T’Sou-ke Nation, a Coast Salish Band, quickly gained the Europeans’ attention as a place to discover gold in the 1860s. I’m sure many who came for the gold back then decided to stay for the beautiful location.
One of its highlights, as far as energetic activities go that can be done in almost any weather, is the Galloping Goose Trail. This former railroad line is a popular way to stay active for anyone who wants to walk, cycle, roller blade, or shuffle. Going the whole 100km is optional and perhaps best left to the cyclists and runners. However long you travel, you’ll be amazed at the views of the Juan De Fuca Strait along the way.
All the beaches in this region of Vancouver Island are amazing from Sooke to the Port Renfrew area, including the West Coast Trail. But when the weather isn’t in your favour, there is another aspect to the town that may keep you dry and interested. That is Sooke’s arts community, alive, vibrant, and brimming with all kinds of creativity and allure.
Many Artsy Activities Help Keep this Community Alive
Aside from the usual art galleries, there is an increasing development of artisans working in Sooke, and you may get a special tour of products in the making. The tours run year-round and are especially popular around Christmastime. There are pottery and glass studios, intricate wood design shops, and of course, studios for painters and photographers.
Sooke’s Community Theatre features a small theatre group that puts out several plays and musicals per year. And for a town of over 10,000, it is really cool that they have their own orchestra and many independent musicians.
Like its many outdoor attractions, Sooke has a large artistic community as well, which is perfect for exploring when the weather keeps you off the beach.
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