4 routes · Hiking
Witty's Lagoon and Sitting Lady Falls
Sitting Lady Falls is a 30-minute drive from downtown Victoria, tucked in along the rural coastline of Metchosin.
- 3.4 km
- 87 m
- 87 m
- 0-1 hrs
- Low Point
- 0 m
- High Point
- 40 m
A wide, gravel path called the Beach Trail leads you downhill from the parking lot. Glimpses of Bilston Creek can be seen through the trees. This is the creek that feeds Sitting Lady Falls.
When you reach a fork in the trail, go left, taking the Lagoon Trail. You’ll be able to hear the rush of the waterfall before you see it. The trail horseshoes around the cliffside, transitioning into a wooden boardwalk and then depositing you back on the forest floor.
The path leads you down to a viewing platform directly across from the falls. Broadleaf maples frame the view as the waterfall cascades over the cliff. It falls as a singular white curtain before splitting into two, giving the impression of a lady sitting over the tidal lagoon.
The water flows over basalt, a volcanic rock, which is part of the Metchosin Igenous Complex (or simply put, the ocean crust) and formed 50 million years ago. This rock is unique for its “pillow” formation. Much of it is covered in the coastal succulent, stonecrop, and a variety of ferns and mosses, but if you look hard enough, you can just make it out.
If you keep walking the Lagoon Trail, you’ll tour the northeastern side of the salt marsh, which is lined by impressive arbutus trees stretching out over the water. Witty’s Lagoon is tidal, the saltwater enters through a narrow canal and mixes with the freshwater brought down by the waterfall. This salt marsh is a unique ecosystem that supports over 160 resident and migratory bird species. Keep an eye out for belted kingfishers, oystercatchers, herons, and more.
To reach the beach, retrace your steps back up the Lagoon Trail and to the fork, this time choosing the Beach Trail. You’ll cross over the top of Sitting Lady Falls on a boardwalk and then continue on a forested path lined by sword ferns and wildflowers. Keep following it along the lagoon's edge to find Witty’s Beach on Parry Bay. Do your best to keep off the native vegetation as it helps stabilize the sand dunes and protects the beach from erosion.
The beach looks out at the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Tower Point, the Olympic Mountains, and Heystock Islets. At low tide, the sand flats stretch on and on, making this a popular spot for skimboarding. Come for the waterfall, stay for the beach!
Witty's Lagoon is in the traditional territory of the Sc’ianew Cheanuh (Beecher Bay First Nation.)
Walking along a well-kept trail that’s mostly flat. No obstacles are present.
Best time to visit
- Dog friendly
- Wild flowers
- Water features
- Forestry or heavy vegetation