Gate of Harmonious Interest and Chinatown, Victoria

Gate of Harmonious Interest and Chinatown, Victoria

The Gate of Harmonious Interest is not only a cultural symbol, but also serves as a magnificent gateway to Victoria's Chinatown, the oldest in Canada and second only to San Francisco's in North America. Its history dates back to the mid-19th century, with a mass influx of miners from California to what is now British Columbia.

The Gate of Harmonious Interest was erected in 1981 to celebrate the revitalization of Chinatown by the City of Victoria and the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association, with the participation of both Chinese and non-Chinese communities. The gate is a shining emblem of unity and harmony, as reflected in the two inscriptions on it, "To work together with one heart" and "To help each other achieve harmony."

The structure itself is a spectacular piece of architecture with elaborate red and gold decorations, a true feast for the eyes. Two hand-carved stone lions, gifted by Victoria's Twin City, Suzhou of the People's Republic of China, stand guard on either side, adding a touch of magnificence to the scene. The outer red pillars hold two time capsules each, to be opened in 2081 and 2096, providing a glimpse into the past for future generations. Additionally, a plaque engraved with the names of 61 Chinese Canadians who fought and died for Canada during World War II is also located at the site, reminding visitors of the sacrifices made for the country.

Why You Should Visit:
The ambiance of Victoria's Chinatown is palpable, as most alleys brim with unique boutique shops. From vegan cork purses to specialty soaps, these shops offer a plethora of items that cannot be found elsewhere. Other stops range from produce, chocolate and bakeries to metaphysical literature. The alleys themselves are cute and infused with atmosphere, featuring exposed brick, vibrant colors, and impeccable cleanliness.

Not all restaurants are great, so make sure you read some reviews before choosing where to eat.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Victoria. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Gate of Harmonious Interest and Chinatown on Map

Sight Name: Gate of Harmonious Interest and Chinatown
Sight Location: Victoria, Canada (See walking tours in Victoria)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

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