Goldstream Provincial Park is a large natural and forested park located less than 20 km north of Victoria on the Trans-Canada Highway.
A popular place for hikes and camping, Goldstream Park is 477 hectares in size. It features over 170 campsites, many of which are available year-round.
There are extensive hiking trails, a river and even a couple of waterfalls in the area. One of them in fact is called Niagara Falls and is over 47 metres high. There are also picnic tables, a picnic shelter, lots of forest trails and wildlife in the area (including eagles and sometimes even bears).
Where is Goldstream?
Goldstream Provincial Park is located in the Greater Victoria municipality of Langford.
Leaving Victoria and heading up the Trans-Canada Highway, the park is just north of the community of Langford. Before the highway narrows and you enter a bit of a ravine, you’ll find the campground on your left. Soon after the highway narrows, the main day-use parking area is a little further up on your right.
Goldstream Park Salmon Run
A popular time to visit the park is during the annual salmon run in autumn. From mid-October until late December thousands of Chum salmon make their way up the river to spawn and then die. Lesser numbers of Coho and Chinook can also be seen in Goldstream River at various times.
At its peak, the salmon run at Goldstream is impressive. Hundreds of people turn out to see the fish, as do hundreds of seagulls, dozens of eagles and even the occasional black bear.
Peak salmon run season varies each year, and the numbers of fish vary from year to year. Early November is generally a pretty good time to visit.
Tips and Tricks
TIP #1: Go earlier in the salmon run season as the smell of rotting fish can be overwhelming for some people if you visit later.
TIP #2: Dogs are allowed along the trails but they must be kept on leash and you are encouraged to keep them away from the stream as the fish are easily scared by loud noises and lots of movement.
TIP #3: Check out the nature house. To get there you follow a nice path through the forest to the estuary and inside the nature house they have a resident toad, baby salmon in a tank, fun games for kids to play, and a description of the salmon life cycle.
TIP #4: If going during the salmon run, avoid wearing red, pink, or purple as the salmon can easily see bright colours.
TIP #5: Wear polarized sunglasses if you have them, they will reduce the glare from the water so you can see the actual fish more easily.
TIP #6: Come early if you want to find a parking spot! It can get very busy during salmon run season so finding parking can sometimes be difficult. Also try to carpool if possible to minimize the amount of spots you take up.
TIP #7: While you’re in Goldstream Park, challenge yourself and do the incredibly steep 4 km hike up Mount Finlayson.
For a map of the park click Goldstream Park Map.
For a map of the campground area click Goldstream Campsite Map.