Hatley Castle, BC

Written by Dustin Manley

If you’ve ever watched Arrow, Smallville, any of the X-Men movies, or Deadpool you will recognize Hatley Castle. It’s also where I completed my graduate studies. Built in 1906, the 40-room Edwardian mansion housed for BC’s Lieutenant Governor, James Dunsmuir, and his wife Laura until it was sold to the Government of Canada in 1939, where it was used for the Royal Roads Military College until 1995 when it became the public Royal Roads University.

Royal Roads University has the most beautiful campus in all of Canada, bar none. And I’m not just saying that because I’m an alumnus. The 565 oceanfront acres are home to majestic gardens and offer stunning views of the Olympic Mountains in Washington. The campus is also filled with peacocks. No one knows definitively why. One of the more popular theories is there were presented as a gift to the Dunsmuir's in the early 20th century and have been part of campus every since. While they may be beautiful, these birds are big, territorial, and not afraid of you.

If you’re ever in Vancouver Island make it a priority to visit Hatley Castle and Royal Roads. It’s a diamond on a stunning island.

All photos by Dustin Manley. All rights reserved.