Note that you can click on each object on the map to obtain details about it.
Trans Canada Trail Legend:
|Trans Canada Trail Pavilion|
|Multi-Use Route (Cycling & Walking)|
|Hiking Only Route (No Cycling)|
|Equestrian Route (May Allow Cyclists/Walkers)|
|Temporary Bypass or Unofficial TCT Route|
|Trans Canada Trail Closed|
|Obstacle or Warning (click it for details)|
Alternate Route Legend:
|Alternate Route for Cyclists & Walkers|
|Alternate Route for Hiking|
|Alternate Route for Equestrians|
|Connection Point to the Trans Canada Trail|
Google Maps Legend:
|Map menu to access highlights, campsites, grocery stores, parking areas, toilets and more!|
|Click the grey star at the top of the map to favourite it in Google Maps, so you can pull it up later in your Google Maps app's "My Places".|
Disclaimer: This trail information is subject to changes. While reasonable effort has been made to ensure that the information on this site is correct, Trails BC makes no warranty about the accuracy of this information and accepts no liability for any inconvenience or any direct or consequential loss arising from reliance upon this information. Be sure to check our Latest Trail Closures before heading out and read our full disclaimer!.
- KML/KMZ files can be opened in Google Earth, and many smartphone apps.
- GPX files can be opened by most GPS software apps when KMZ cannot. Note, GPX files do not contain custom colours and icons that we use on our maps; all tracks and icons will appear the same colour and styles. We recommend using KMZ instead of GPX if possible.
The files below include data for only this specific area. For all of our Trans Canada Trail data for the entire province (including features, campsites and alternate routes), download our BC.kmz master file (1.2 MB)
Visit our GPS & Navigation page for instructions of how to use your smartphone as a GPS device (even when outside of data coverage) or how to import data to your Garmin unit.
About the Route:
This route is a suitable alternate to travelling the Trans Canada Trail north on Vancouver Island to reach the lower mainland (Vancouver area) via the Swartz Bay-Tsawwassen ferry. Our Southwest region maps provide information on routes connecting from the Tsawassan ferry terminal.
Also, the southern half of this route provides a bypass of the Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail which connects the TCT between Victoria and the Cowichan Valley. Although the Sooke Hill Wilderness Trail is an operational section of Trans Canada Trail, its grades do make it a difficult route for touring cyclists. We suggest bypassing it; our preferred route is the Interurban Route but the Lochside route may be slightly simpler route to follow. Please note the connection from the Lochside to the Brentwood Bay ferry travels along East Saanich Road and Stelly's Cross Road which can host moderately busy traffic at times. The map shows a connection route from the Lochside Trail to the Brentwood Bay ferry. For directions from Brentwood Bay to the Trans Canada Trail at Shawnigan Lake, refer to our Malahat Bypass page.
Connection Points to the TCT:
In the south, this alternate route leaves the Trans Canada Trail at the point where the Lochside Trail separates from the Galloping Goose (at the north end of the Trans Canada Highway overpass known as the "Switch Bridge"). This is located directly adjacent to the Uptown shopping mall. Northbound travellers should take the trail on the right - signs will direct you towards "Swartz Bay".
In the north, this alternate route terminates at the Swartz Bay ferry terminal, so there is no connection point to the Trans Canada Trail per se; although one can take the ferry to Tsawwassen and use our alternate routes to connect to the TCT in Langley or in downtown Vancouver:
Trail Highlights and Developments:
This picturesque 29 kilometre multi–use trail, formerly a railway line, stretches from Swartz Bay to Victoria, past beaches, farmland, and wetlands, down country lanes and beside suburban backyards. The trail has a more civilized personality than its more rural cousin, the Galloping Goose Regional Trail. While some parts of the Lochside Trail are off-road and others downright pastoral, in some places trail visitors must share paved or gravel public roads with motor vehicles and farm vehicles.
You can cycle, stroll, run, or even ride a horse through the rural sections. Whether you're commuting to work, meandering on a weekend afternoon or pacing yourself from the Switch Bridge to Swartz Bay, the trail is yours to enjoy and yours to protect.
The former railway which once called the Lochside home was known as the Canadian Northern Pacific (By 1918 Canadian National) Railway. Starting from Victoria, the railway travelled north along the peninsula to Patricia Bay - therefore the northern segment of the trail is not technically rail trail. The railway was abandoned and sat for many years until the trail was opened in 2001.
For those travelling on foot, you may wish to take a short detour in Sidney to follow the walking trail along the waterfront.
The Lochside Trail intersects with the Galloping Goose Regional Trail and Trans Canada Trail just north of Victoria.
Island View Regional Park is a great spot for a picnic and makes an ideal resting point as it is roughly near the halfway mark between Victoria and Sidney. Turn east when you reach Island View Road. Alternatively, stop for a lunch break at Michell's Farm located at the insection of the Lochside Trail at Island View Road.
An outhouse is located at Island View Road, which is basically the halfway mark between Victoria and Sidney.
Mattick's Farm is a popular stopping point north of Victoria, found at the Cordova Bay Golf Club - which is about 5 km north of Royal Oak Drive.
There is a small fruit and veggie market located at the corner of Island View Road and the Lochside, located roughly halfway between Victoria and Sidney.