Bikes and Bites in Victoria, B.C.

The Saanich Peninsula

Someone has finally picked up on the idea of offering cycling tours in Victoria, B.C. that combine rides on its long network of paths with stops along a culinary trail that showcases Vancouver Island coffee roasters, breweries, bakeries and distillers.

Victoria Tourism reports that a new bike shop called The Pedaler will offer a variety of guided, themed tours: Beans and Bites, The Hoppy Hour Ride, Castles, Hoods and Legends...and here's the one I'm excited about: Spirits of Saanich.

Beans and Bites will take visitors to coffee roasters and bakers. The Hoppy Hour Ride will introduce riders to some of the city's brewmasters. Castles, Hoods and Legends tour will showcase neighborhoods. 

Spirits of Saanich will guide visitors to the heart of the Sannich Peninsula, a little-known and under-appreciated area of the island in my opinion, to enjoy locally-crafted spirits and the HCP Gardens.

The Saanich Peninsula is a 20-mile-long finger of land that extends north from Victoria toward Sidney on the southern tip of B.C.'s Vancouver Island. When I visited a couple of years ago for a story for The Seattle Times, I found culinary tourism thriving.

Away from the housing developments and suburban strip malls, roadside signs point the way to wineries, farms and orchards where owners keep the welcome mat out year-round.To read more on what I found in the Saanich, click here.

In the meantime, check out The Pedaler's tours. The first three are three hours long and start at $79 Canadian. The Spirits of Saanich is a full day and will cost $129. A note on the website says the business will launch in May.

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