The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority (GVHA) is the port authority for the Port of Victoria. This not-for-profit society was incorporated in 2002 to operate four port facilities and act as an advocate for the harbor. The GVHA is responsible for operating and maintaining the Port of Victoria and to support the best possible use of the water, marine, and marine-related resources of the harbor. The GVHA bases its success on the Port of Victoria's accessibility to the community, achieving the highest and best use of harbor water and assets, the harbor's contributions to the local and regional economy, partnership with the indigenous Songhees and Esquimalt Nations.
The Port of Victoria has three parts: the Outer Harbor used by deep-sea vessels and the Inner and Upper Harbors used by coastal and industrial interests. The Port of Victoria is protected by a breakwater with a wide, deep opening. The Port of Victoria is more than a working harbor. It is also an important local tourist attraction and a destination for cruises. The nearby Esquimalt Harbor, containing graving dock and ship-building and repair facilities, is also well protected.
The Port of Victoria offers convenient access to modern air, rail, road, and marine transportation networks. Transportation services include seaplanes, helicopters, ferries, road freight carriers, buses, and passenger trains as well as the Victoria International Airport just 30 kilometers north of downtown.
The Port of Victoria Harbour is one of the world's most beautiful harbors with a long history going back to the First Nations. The city center offers mooring for recreational and small cruise vessels. While the Port of Victoria is a major tourist attraction serving the cruise ship industry, ecotourism, and whale-watching, it is also a busy working port. The Port of Victoria's Inner Harbour is a popular natural harbor that hosts people from around the world who love the natural beauty and urban charm of the city.
The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority operates five port facilities in the Port of Victoria: Ogden Point, Fisherman's Wharf, Mermaid's Wharf, Wharf Street to Johnson Street, and Causeway/Ship Point.
The Port of Victoria's 34.6-hectare Ogden Point Terminal contains four deep-water berths that can accommodate vessels to 305 meters long with a maximum draft of 11.3 meters. The facility handles a wide range of general, project, bulk, and breakbulk cargoes and serves off-shore supply vessels, research vessels, tugs, and barges. With alongside depths from 9.4 to 10.7 meters, one Ogden Point berth is 304.8 meters long, and three berths are 243.8 meters long.
The Ogden Point Terminal in the Port of Victoria is open 24 hours a day and includes the Passenger Terminal which supports cruise traffic at Piers A and B. The Port of Victoria's Esquimalt Graving Dock at Ogden Point, located about six kilometers from downtown, is one of the biggest ship repair facilities on North America's west coast, and it can accommodate ships to Panamax class.
The Ogden Point Terminal at the Port of Victoria contains modern facilities with ample parking, passenger transport, and cargo storage areas. The passenger terminal offers a full range of amenities, including tour and shuttle buses for excursions to the city's major attractions. A heliport offers direct service to both Vancouver and Seattle.
The Port of Victoria's GVHA also operates marinas in the heart of Victoria Harbour that receive more than 3.5 thousand recreational vessels during the summer months each year. The marinas, with washrooms and Laundromats, are located at the Mermaid's Wharf and the Wharf Street to Johnson Street facilities.
The Port of Victoria's Cruise Tourism Partnership (CTP) was created to improve the quality of life for residents and to provide a high-quality experience for visitors. Cruise ships arriving at the Port of Victoria must meet rigorous environmental standards. In 2007, twenty cruise ships brought about 325 thousand passengers to the Port of Victoria in over 160 vessel calls. "Cruise the West" is a partnership of West Coast ports offering adventures from the Alaskan Wilderness and British Columbia along the western United States into Mexico. Born in 2002, "Cruise British Columbia" works to make British Columbia one of the world's most popular cruise destinations. "Victoria AM" was incorporated in 1984 as a non-profit organization dedicated to building tourism in the Port of Victoria.