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“The Most Fun!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Big Bad John's

Big Bad John's
919 Douglas Street, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada (Downtown)
250 383 7137
Website
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Ranked #1 of 27 Nightlife in Victoria
Type: Bar/ Clubs, Bars
Attraction details
Calgary
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“The Most Fun!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2012

Such a fab little hole in the wall place!
Great atmosphere.
Great variety of people.
Bras hanging from the ceiling - feel free to add to their collection ;)
Eat peanuts and throw the shells on the floor - so awesome!

Visited July 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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32 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Brisbane, Australia
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Loads of Fun at BBJs.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2012

Big Bad John's is a crazy little hillbilly bar, not much bigger than a large room. We enter with some trepidation past the "Sorry we're open" sign. Dimly lit, the floor is littered with peanut shells. One is immediately served with a tin bucket of peanuts. Our host is Gerry Laing, the well-known bar keep who has run Big Bad John's (taken from the county and western song) for more than 40 years. Country music is blaring out over loud speakers, bras hang from the low beams of the ceiling and the walls and bar tables are papered with old bank notes (from various countries) business cards and crazy scribblings. We locate some stout souls from our Aussies tour group and join them for a drink. After a couple, some of our company adopt the spirit of the place, whip off their bras (with all due modesy) and make a donation. We all sign them with markers Gerry willingly supplies and they are duly hung. This place just insists that you have to have fun.

While effortlessly and efficiently working the bar and keeping tables single handed, Gerry also has time, Marx Brothers style, to occasionaly blast a claxon horn or to release from the ceiling and dangle in front of some unsuspecting patron, a toy hairy spider or a rubber chicken.

Gerry is great with the dead pan wise cracks as well. When he asked my wife Cheryl if she would like another wine (even thought she still had half a glass in front of her) and she politely said "no thank you", Gerry immediatley retorted with "OK. Trying to give it up eh?" We loved it. How could you not order another drink after that.

Even with all the gimmicks and the emphasis on drinking (as it should be, after all Gerry has a buck to make) the pleasant surprise is that the pub food is good as well. Reasonably priced too. This is a great place and we settle in for a session. Later, as we leave and are outside taking the compulsory tourist snap, Gerry comes out to the pavement and poses for a photo with us. What a great evening.

Visited June 2012
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Vancouver, Canada
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Take it from a Local - Don't Miss BBJs”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2012

Big Bad John's is a local institution. Celebrating 50 year's on July 1st as a hole in the wall bar that hasn't changed since it first opened.

Peanuts on the floor, decades worth of bras (yes bras) dollar bills and business cards stapled to the wall, country music, cheap beer and tons of fun. Go for a beer at the beginning of your evening and you may just find you stay until closing time.

First timers beware of plastic spiders that can come down from the ceiling!

Visited June 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
kenora,ON
1 review
“Big Bad John's”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2012

Colourful in Characters and decor! Don't forget your peanuts!

Visited May 2012
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birmingham
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“great fun”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2011

lots of fun, cheerful guest and staff. very generus pour. look out for the chicken in the ceiling. john is a great host.

Visited November 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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