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The Tacca wild boar statue, Butchart Gardens

How to Get to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver (Fast and Cheap)


Victoria’s enchanting gardens promise wonders at every turn, but how do you get to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver?

Unfortunately, this famed botanical paradise isn’t exactly around the corner – and it’s even worse without a car.

Let’s figure out the best way to get to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver for you!

I mentioned this in my how to get to Victoria from Vancouver post: Butchart Gardens is on Vancouver Island, roughly 100 km away (43 miles) across the Salish Sea.

The map above really gives a lot of perspective, eh?

For that reason, getting from Vancouver to Butchart Gardens isn’t the easiest trip to take – especially without a car.

No car? I suggest skipping over to my post on Butchart Gardens day tours from Vancouver.

Sometimes, it’s better to sit back with a tablet on a bus tour and let somebody else do the work – heck, it’s always better!

For those looking to go it alone, I present you my list of how to get to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver.

How to Get from Vancouver to Butchart Gardens by Car, Bus, and Public Transit

A man receives his rental vehicle

How to Get to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver by Car

Travel Time (One Way): 3 hours | Departure Point: Wherever you like | Price: ~$150.00 pp

Most Vancouverites with cars drive over – and tourists interested in a Vancouver car rental will also find this the fastest way to get to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver.

  1. Rent a car in downtown Vancouver if you don’t have one. Factoring in rental and gas, you’re looking at a cost north of $100.00 round-trip.
  2. Take the 45-minute drive to Tsawwassen Terminal from Vancouver.
  3. The ferry from Vancouver to Butchart Gardens departs from Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay. With current BC Ferries rates of $63.85 per vehicle and $18.50 per adult, you’re looking at $201.72 for the round trip for two adults.
  4. Make the 30-minute drive from Swartz Bay to Butchart Gardens. Tickets here are $41.50 per person (high season).
  5. Drive back to Swartz Bay for the sailing back to Vancouver.
Passengers board the BCF Connector

Vancouver to Butchart Gardens by Bus

Travel Time (One Way): 4.5 hours | Departure Point: Pacific Central Station | Price: ~$269.00 pp

Taking a coach over to Butchart Gardens is great if you’re looking to plan something with utmost independence.

That said, there’s just a lot of transit involved here, and it’s the most expensive.

Here’s how I’d get to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver by bus:

  1. Purchase a return fare on the Vancouver to Victoria bus. At current rates of $98.00 each way, you’re looking at a $200 bill – but at least, in this case, the ferry ride is included.
  2. Find your way to Pacific Central Station to board your bus. From here, they’ll take you directly to the ferry to Butchart Gardens (though it’s not direct).
  3. You’ll now find yourself at Capital City Station in downtown Victoria.
  4. Take the Victoria Butchart Gardens Express Shuttle (admission included) for $50.
  5. Make your way back to Capital City Station and re-board your bus to do the whole thing in reverse.

skytrain arrives at a station in vancouver canada

How to Get to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver by Public Transit

Travel Time (One Way): 4.5 hours | Departure Point: Various | Price: ~$50.00-$60.00 pp

The cheapest way to get to Butchart Gardens comes with a time cost, but then again I’ll never talk badly about Vancouver public transit!

Here’s a streamlined guide to reaching Butchart Gardens from Vancouver using public transportation:

  1. Start with the SkyTrain: Catch the Canada Line from any downtown Vancouver station to Bridgeport Station.
  2. Bus to Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal: Transfer to bus 620 at Bridgeport Station, which takes you directly to the Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal. Expect to spend around $7.75 for the bus fare.
  3. Ferry to Vancouver Island: The ferry from Vancouver to Butchart Gardens costs $18.75 per adult for a one-way trip. Enjoy the scenic 1.5-hour ferry ride across the Salish Sea.
  4. Bus from Swartz Bay to Victoria: Upon arrival, hop on bus 70 or 72 to downtown Victoria. This leg costs about $2.50.
  5. Victoria to Butchart Gardens: From downtown Victoria, take bus 75 directly to Butchart Gardens. The bus fare is another $2.50, and the journey takes about 45 minutes.
  6. Return Journey: Simply reverse the steps to get back to Vancouver. Ensure to check the last bus and ferry times to plan your return trip accordingly.

This public transit route offers a full day of travel and sightseeing, requiring early departure and careful timing to maximize your visit to the gardens.

How Do You Get from Vancouver to Butchart Gardens FAQ

How far is Butchart Gardens from Vancouver?

Butchart Gardens is approximately 70 kilometres (43 miles) from downtown Vancouver, including a 1.5-hour ferry ride from Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay and a short drive.

How to get from downtown Vancouver to Butchart Gardens?

To get to Butchart Gardens from downtown Vancouver, take the Skytrain to Bridgeport station, take the 605 bus to Tsawassen, and then take the ferry to Victoria.

From here, it’s a matter of taking bus 70 to Victoria, then bus 75 directly to Butchart Gardens.

How to get from downtown Vancouver to Butchart Gardens by car?


To get from downtown Vancouver to Butchart Gardens by car, drive to Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal, take the ferry to Swartz Bay, and then drive south on Highway 17 to Butchart Gardens.

Still Wondering About Getting to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver?

I’ve gone to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver multiple times, but maybe I’ve missed something.

If you’re still looking for the best way to get to Butchart Gardens from Vancouver for your tastes, drop me a line.

I’m always available in the comments below – just try me!

Ash

I've lived in 5 countries and created content for travel websites like eDreams and Amex Essentials, but here I finally get to work my passion project - my hometown, Vancouver!

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