I recently had the opportunity to visit the beautiful city of Victoria, British Columbia. While being the location of provincial capital, Victoria has a number of gems waiting to be discovered. Whether it is the totem poles of the First Nations past in Vancouver Island, a well-preserved Chinatown, stunning gardens, a picturesque harbor and one of Canada's grandest hotels, Victoria has a lot going for it. But during my research of things to see and do within the few hours I had to devote to this charming city, I found that there is a Mile Zero monument for the Trans-Canada Highway.
The mainline of the Trans-Canada Highway stretches 4,860 miles (7,821 kilometers) from Victoria, British Columbia to St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, and is one of the longest continuous roads in the world. As for the Mile Zero monument, it can be found at Victoria's Beacon Hill Park, at the corner of Douglas Street and Dallas Road. From here, the Trans-Canada Highway goes north on Douglas Street towards downtown Victoria and ultimately across Canada. While it is not known when the monument was put up, my guess is that the monument was put when the Trans-Canada Highway was opened in 1962. This would have been before the time when Canada went to the metric system. It is a relatively simple monument, but it tells you simply what it is, the beginning of the Trans-Canada Highway. There is another Mile Zero monument at the highway's eastern end in St. John's.
You can find other monuments nearby as well. There is a Terry Fox statue right behind the Mile Zero monument. Terry Fox was a young man stricken with bone cancer and as a result of the cancer, his right leg was amputated above the knee. In 1980, Fox began the Marathon of Hope, where he would run the length of the Trans-Canada Highway from St. John's to Victoria to raise money for cancer research. Unfortunately, he never achieved his goal of running all the way to the Mile Zero monument in Victoria, having to stop near Thunder Bay, Ontario after 143 days on the road because cancer had spread to his lungs. If he had made it to Victoria, he would've been greeted by views of the scenic Strait of Juan de Fuca, which is across the street from the Mile Zero Monument.
|The Mile Zero Monument is simple, yet beautiful. In the summertime, there's plenty of flowers surrounding the monument.
|Only 4,860 miles to St. John's, Newfoundland.
|Fundraising for causes have been noteworthy events along the Trans-Canada Highway and they all have a grand finale in Victoria.
|Terry Fox statue.
|The Mile Zero monument can be found at the southwest corner of Beacon Hill Park, where Douglas Street and Dallas Road intersect.
|The Trans-Canada Highway ends or begins across the street from the Strait of Juan de Fuca. There was an anchor honoring Victoria's maritime heritage that was installed across the street from the Mile Zero Monument.
How to Get There:
Sources and Links:
Tourism Victoria - Mile 0
Atlas Obscura - Mile 0
Roadside America - Mile Zero of the Trans-Canada Highway