This seaside fishing community is a popular retirement spot. Sooke has 12,000 residents attracted by its quiet community close to the water. The town has been settled since 1864, when it was a staging point for the Leech River gold rush. Sooke has several neighbourhoods, including (in order from Victoria) North Sooke, Saseenos, Billings Spit, Sooke River, Sooke Town, Broom Hill, John Muir, and Wiffen Spit. All are close to the town's shopping and recreational facilities.
The exception is East Sooke, on the southern side of the Sooke Basin, about 10 kilometres south of the Sooke Road (and another 7 into town), though only a few short kilometres by boat across the harbour.
There are 5 school in Sooke, 3 Elementary: Sooke, John Muir and Saseenos. 1 Middle school, Journey Middle School and one High school, Edward Milne Community School, plus a public library.
There is a small shopping district in Sooke, though the nearest mall is in Langford.
Much of the recreation in Sooke is focused on the water, on its protected harbour. The community also has an arena, a museum, and access to the Galloping Goose Regional Trail, which extends from View Royal through Sooke up the Sooke River to abandoned Leechtown. Sooke also has the John Phillips Memorial Golf Club, just north of the town centre. To the south of Sooke is 1,422 hectare East Sooke Park, which has many kilometres of trails along the coast, and up to the various peaks in the park. Also close by is Roche Cove Regional Park, on the east side of the Sooke Basin.