Fort Rodd Hill is a historic attractions and a National Historic Site of Canada located in Victoria, British Columbia, (B.C.), Canada on Vancouver Island.
Fort Rodd Hill is a sightseeing destination providing views of the Olympic Mountains and the Pacific Ocean. There are often marine sightings as well including sail boats, yachts, cargo ships and navy vessels.
The site of the historic landmark started as a depot for lumber, water and moorage. After the establishment of 3 hospital huts to service the men during the Crimean War of 1854-56 the site slowly grew into a naval base for the British Royal Navy's Pacific Squadron.
The squadron moved full time to the site in 1862 from Valparaiso, Chile. The establishment of a naval base on Esquimalt Harbour created a need for the development of a defence system from future attacks.
Tensions of wars like the 1877-78 Eastern Crisis between Russia and Britain and the 1859 San Juan Islands Pig War reinforced the need for a better defensive system. The site soon erected 5 batteries of guns to protect the entrance to the Esquimalt Harbour.
Soon later in 1897 a fort was constructed at Macaulay Point and on Fort Rodd Hill. New bigger artillery guns were brought in and installed as well as garrisons and guard houses.
Today the Fort Rodd Hill Historic Site includes 3 gun batteries, command posts, underground batteries, barracks and guard houses. Throughout the site are interpretive signs depicting the stories of the equipment and of military life.
The site also doubles as a birding and wildlife destination. The unique location provides opportunities for birders to capture sightings of blue herons and bald eagles and for photographers to capture photos of sea lions, seals and whales.
Next door to the historic site is another sightseeing destination called the Fisgard Lighthouse. There is a day use picnic area and an opportunity to access the beach and tidal pools located down on the waterfront.
During the summer months there is a concession stand operating in the old canteen building serving snacks and beverages.