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« Day One: Golden City and the Water | Main | Day Three: Jennie's Quarry »

October 19, 2008



Those photos are just breathtaking Alicia. I have always wanted to venture up that way myself, alas, that will have to happen after Emma is older....

The hotel is just magnificent. I cannot wait until November 1st because it is our annual trip to Eureka Springs to play and see all the fall foliage. I cannot wait!

Kristin Maclean

While it takes a little work, here's the recipe we use to make Naniamo Bars. They ARE delicious aren't they? We've always made double or sometimes triple the recipe and frozen them. Beautiful pictures of Victoria BTW!

Nanaimo Bar - Ingredients:

Nanaimo Bar - Base

2 squares (oz.) semi-sweet chocolate
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup coconut
1/2 cup softened butter
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg

Nanaimo Bar - Filling

1/4 cup butter, softened
3 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons instant vanilla pudding
2 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar

Nanaimo Bar - Glaze

4 squares (oz.) semi-sweet chocolate
1 tablespoon butter

Nanaimo Bar - Procedure:

Nanaimo Bar - Base

Combine ingredients. Press into 9 inch square cake pan. Chill.

Nanaimo Bar - Filling

Combine butter, milk, and custard powder. Blend in confectioner's sugar. Spread over base. Chill at least 15 minutes.

Nanaimo Bar - Glaze

Partially melt chocolate and butter. Remove from heat and stir until melted. Spread over custard layer. Chill.
Store in refrigerator, covered, up to 1 month. Makes 24 bars.

Serve chilled. They're rich, so small portions may be appropriate.

mariana m*

Such an interesting blog you have! I'm glad to have found you.

Regards from Barcelona!


Love your recipies ^_^


So glad you finally made it to my town! It's a beautiful and interesting place, but I often forget that. It's good to see Victoria through someone else's eyes. I'm Vancouver Island born and Nanaimo Bars have been at the table every Christmas in my family. If I may be so bold, I think that my Grandma had the VERY BEST recipe and it calls for Bird's Custard Powder in the filling, never Vanilla Pudding. You've inspired me to make some this afternoon - check out my blog tomorrow and I'll post a recipe!


I hope you enjoyed your trip - I am delurking to share the fact that I visited Victoria back in '96 just for the day; we had drinks at the hotel, and walked to and toured the castle as well. I think it was a Sunday, and almost everything was closed, just like the day you are describing! We went by seaplane - it was quite an adventure.


Beautiful conclusion.


It sounds like a lovely trip. Your photos really are so good and your writing so evocative. Bet those caramel apples were tasty! Goodness that was some walk you undertook in London. North London was my old stamping ground and I always love to read random things about it in blogland.

Rosa, alberta,canada

I LOVE Victoria!
I've been a few times, mostly as a kid, but I went a few years back with my sister.We went in spring, and if you are a gardener like I am, it's wonderful. I went to the Abekhazi garden and walked under huge blooming rhododendrons.


I'm happy to hear that you and Andy were able to take some time to get away. I love this post... it was as if I was right there with you touring the castle. My trip to Victoria was a lovely trip. I'm sure it would have been better with a romantic partner. Next time you'll have to venture to the gardens and the butterfly garden. Oh... that's a treat!


What a lovely holiday! That hotel looks so enchanting, too. If you ever find yourself in London again, let me know. I'd be happy to show you around and my best friend, Alice, will take you to all the best yarn shops.

I could go for one of those caramel apples now :-9


Safe travels!

Lisa H.

Your photos are amazing! I live across the water from Victoria, in Port Angeles, and go as often as I can. Sometimes just spending the day in the Rose Garden at the Empress reading a book.

But there are so many nooks and crannies to discover in that city that it's always an adventure.

So glad you enjoyed your get away!


Thank God I'm in the Navy, most of my postings end up being to the Canadian East or West coast, and i had the opportunity to live in the gorgeous Victoria city for two months this past summer, and will be there for another 11 weeks this summer!
Come visit while the gorgeous yarn shops are open!


Oh, you were in MY town. I'm so glad you enjoyed it. And I think, that if you had visited the yarn and embroidery store pictured in the afternoon, it would have been open.
I do hope you didn't pay $19 for a ham sandwich - you can find good food for better prices elsewhere.

And I, too, love Nanaimo Bars. I make them regularly and they freeze well. Even my husband loves them, and he doesn't like coconut. I don't know if you can get Bird's Custard Powder in the USA, but vanilla pudding powder would be a reasonable fascimile.



I love old buildings like that. They are fun to walk through and imagine the generations before you who had been there. Looks like you had great fun. Take care,


What fun, Alicia...I took my daughter to Victoria on the Clipper, four years ago, when she was but five years old...Just us girls...Stayed at a wonderful B&B...went to the Butchart Gardens, took a ride on the double decker bus, shopped, ate out, went to a street market, walked all over...Lots of street musicians...We loved it...Take care, Katie


So neat to see you were in Victoria! (I live on a small island just off Nanaimo) Victoria is such a beautiful little city. Too bad the weather wasn't a little nicer for you.


I love your photos from Victoria. They made me laugh and remember my friend's comment about my photos from Cologne, Germany (like 10 years ago): "There certainly are a lot of buildings in Cologne!" I had filled roll after roll of shots of architecture. :) Heehee!

Alissa Nicolau

I really enjoyed your photo tour of Victoria. It made me want to book a trip and also helped me to feel as if I had already been there. Beautiful.


Wow Alicia!! This is the perfect fall post, it makes me yearn to visit Victoria, despite the 19 dollar sandwich ;) Your photos of the Empress and Craigdorroch Castle remind me of the movie "The Little Princess.." Very victorian, very beautiful! I have deffinitely enjoyed this post, thanks for sharing!

Miss Cavendish

Ahhh--I haven't had a Nanaimo bar in some 18 years! There weren't any that I could see on PEI this summer (wrong coast), so I just may try out the recipe above.


Yes I love Victoria too. I've been there many times as we live in BC and travel to the island once or twice a year. There is a lovely bakery on Fort St (downtown) called (I think) The Dutch Bakery- oh my gosh! Such yummy beautiful little cakes and treats. WOW. Anyway, the Empress is supposedly haunted, as all of those old hotels are. Anything strange happen while you were there?


How completely fabulous! I have been to Victoria once - when I was 8 years old - and I have NEVER forgotten that beautiful hotel! I simply dream about going there again some day. A friend of mine took his whole family to spend Christmas there a few years ago. Wow. I'm so glad you went and had a wonderful time! I've been able to visit vicariously through your lovely pictures.


It's just so much fun going on trips with you and Andy, Alicia! You're a wonderful tour guide and give such vivid descriptions.

Thank you!!!



I'm so glad you enjoyed Victoria. I was born and raised here and can't imagine living anywhere else. It's great to see our city through someone else's experiences. Hope you get to visit again on a sunny day.

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