Captain's Log

The Best Seats For Victoria Symphony Splash

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On Sunday August 5, 2018, tens of thousands of people will be heading to Victoria's Inner Harbour for the 29th Annual Victoria Symphony Splash. First launched in 1989 in celebration of the Victoria Symphony's 50th Anniversary, Symphony Splash has been growing in size every year since and is now one of the largest annual symphony events in North America. More than 40,000 audience members come to watch from within Victoria and all over the world.

The highlight of Symphony Splash is the grand, majestic performances by the Victoria Symphony orchestra on a floating stage right in the middle of Victoria's Inner Harbour. Every event ends with a grand finale of Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture, complete with navy field guns firing and over 600 fireworks. But that isn't all there is to Symphony Splash — there are also featured young soloists, an opening act performance, local food vendors, a family zone, a downtown parade of the orchestra, and much more!

Any fan of live music and events would love a spot that makes the most of the sights, sounds, and feeling of a full orchestra on display. So where's the best place to claim a seat?

The popularity of Symphony Splash has the unfortunate side effect of making it difficult to get to and enjoy comfortably without extensive planning. You need to:

  • Plan for a long hike, as most available parking will be several blocks away (buses will also be rerouted from their usual stops near the event, and bike parking will be limited)
  • Bring your own chairs, blankets, and other comfort items
  • Either have the means to pay for street food or bring your own meals and water
  • Go to the bathroom before you go, or be prepared to line up at Port-A-Potties
  • Make sure that your valuable belongings are with you at all times
  • Find a free spot that will fit you and all of your friends and family members together, while still granting you a great view and clear sound

What a tall order! For these reasons many diehard "Splash-heads" stake out their spots early in the morning at 8 AM and camp on them all day until the evening performance. Others with experience on the water rent a kayak or canoe and park themselves in the Harbour itself. Some folks enjoy the experience, but it can be difficult if you're disabled, have medical difficulties, are watching small children, want to partake in other events during the day, or just don't want to go through all the hassle.

Luckily, we know just the place to go if you want a top-notch Symphony Splash experience: Our very own Fantasea.

As big fans of the event ourselves, we offer a Symphony Splash cruise every year to so that a lucky group can experience the orchestra in ultimate comfort:

  • No need to bring blankets or chairs: The Fantasea has plenty of comfortable seating on both the main and upper deck, and is fully covered and heated.
  • No need to worry about food and drink: We offer a licensed bar with a hostess to serve, and serving space for any food you might want to bring or order in. (We often recommend Thrifty's party platters, which you can have delivered straight to the boat!)
  • No need to worry about bathrooms: Take advantage of a full on-board washroom with all the amenities you might need.
  • No need to worry about space: The Fantasea easily takes on groups of up to 20 people.
  • No need to worry about children or belongings: They'll be kept safe on deck.
  • No need to hurry: You can have several hours to enjoy the event and the beauty of the Inner Harbour at sunset, while everyone else sits in traffic trying to get home.
  • And of course, no need to worry about the view or the sound: With the Fantasea on the water right in front of the Symphony itself, the only person with a better seat than yours is the conductor.

Our booking gets snapped up quick by fans of the orchestra every year, so if you want a Symphony Splash that you'll remember for years to come, there's no time like the present to reserve the best seats in the house.