The 10 Best Okanagan Golf Courses, With Options For Families

The Okanagan Valley is home to some of the most scenic and carefully manicured golf courses in Canada. Enthusiasts of the sport have been visiting the Okanagan’s executive and championship-style golf courses for years, enjoying the early start to the season, long daylight hours, late summer weather, and typically dry autumns.

From the centrally located Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre, golfers have the luxury of teeing off at one of 30 courses within a 2-hour drive. There are options for every skill level and courses of every variety in the Okanagan — links, park and mountain tracks, and desert-style.

We’ve put together this guide for visitors to the South Okanagan with information on the 10 Best Golf Courses near Penticton, including a few 9-hole options that are great for families and golfers who are new to the sport.

Enjoy reduced Guestroom Rates for group bookings of 6 or more. To book, contact Susan Selles at susan.selles@rpbhotels.com or call (250) 493-9757. Minimum of 6 guest rooms per night. Seasonal offer subject to availability.

Penticton Golf & Country Club

4 minutes or 1.5km from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Type: Public, 18-Hole

Course Rating (from Silver Tees): M-67.3 / W-72.7

Located alongside the river channel in the heart of Penticton, this championship-sized golf course offers a challenge for those after it, or a relaxing day in the Okanagan sunshine for intermediate and casual golfers. A mix of ponderosa pines and weeping willows line the narrow fairways of this scenic course, which is designed with many technical features including protective green-side bunkers and water hazards on 12 of the 18 holes. Penticton Golf & Country Club perfectly mixes a rewarding golf experience with the natural beauty of the Okanagan region.

 

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Summer is officially here in the Okanagan! . . . . #pentictonnow #visitpenticton #earlybirdgetstheworm #pentictonbc

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Pine Hills Golf Club

10 minutes or 5.8km from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Type: Public, Executive 9-Hole

Course Rating: N/A

If you’re looking for a fun and relaxing round of golf with your family, or if you’re just testing out your swing, Pine Hills is a short and casual golf course with fantastic views of Okanagan Lake. Well-manicured grass and greens on this executive par-3 course makes a fun day for beginner golfers and a great short-game tune-up for more experienced players. This golf course also offers limited RV parking for families on road trips through the Okanagan Valley.

 

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Such a cool view of 6 Nicklaus. We can’t wait to have you back out enjoying our courses!

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Skaha Meadows

12 minutes or 7.8km from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Type: Public, Executive 9-hole

Course Rating: N/A

The Skaha Meadows 9-hole gives golfers a quick taste of the Okanagan experience. This course is open year-round (weather permitting), and has a variety of par 3s and 4s, and a single par 5, making it a great place to warm up your swing before visiting a full-length championship golf club. With close access to the beautiful beaches next to Skaha Lake, many visitors to Penticton plan to split their day between golfing at Skaha Meadows, and then relaxing lakeside with their family.

 

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#riseandshine #coffeeonthepatio #gogolfing #skahameadowsgolf

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Summerland Golf Course

21 minutes or 18.6km from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Type: Semi-Private, 18-Hole

Course Rating (from White Tees): M-69.9 / W-76.1

This semi-private golf course will challenge golfers of all abilities. The front nine of Summerland Golf Course plays as a hybrid links and park course, with wide, flat fairways and technical shots over green-side bunkers. The back nine quickly transitions into rolling hills and dramatic elevation changes, with some holes intimidatingly close to the massive Trout Creek Canyon. The 500+ yard 18th hole can make or break your round. An elevated tee box means long drivers have a chance to reach this green in two, but risk being punished for not shooting straight.

 

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The PGA Tour is back! Photo via Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images. . . . . #pga #pgatour #pgagolf

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St. Andrews By The Lake

23 minutes or 21km from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Type: Public, Executive 9-Hole

Course Rating: 30.4

An executive 9-hole course with lakefront views and challenging pin positions, St. Andrews By The Lake is a great place to relax on the course and hone-in the short game. The signature 7th hole is a 166-yard par 3, featuring an island green that will test your accuracy off the tee box. Just south of Skaha Lake, this course offers one of the best twilight golf rates in the Okanagan Valley, making it a great choice for a sunset round of golf with friends and family.

Nk’mip Canyon Desert Golf Course

36 minutes or 39.8km from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Type: Public, 18-Hole

Course Rating (from White Tees): M-67.4 / W-74

Nk’mip (pronounced ‘Inkameep’) is a full-length championship desert-style golf course with a rich history in the Okanagan area. You’ll be driving golf balls off the tee beside lush vineyards and incredible views of Tuc-el-nuit Lake. Check out these aerial recordings to get a sense of just how stunning this course is. The Nk’mip Canyon Desert Golf Course offers visitors two unique Okanagan experiences in one: you can enjoy a round of golf, and follow it up with a glass of wine from the closely located Nk’mip Cellars winery, served at the clubhouse.

Two Eagles Golf Club & Academy

41 minutes or 50.8km from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Type: Public, 18-Hole

Course Rating (from White Tees): M-62.6 / W-65.8

A short drive passed Kelowna on Highway 97, Westbank’s Two Eagles Golf Club & Academy is an enjoyable course for golfers of all abilities. Take in amazing views of Okanagan Lake while you swing and putt your way through this premium Kelowna golf course. With an entire golf academy area, including a driving range, coaches, and private and group programs, golfers can take lessons on-site to improve their scores. More details on golf lessons are available on the Two Eagles Golf Club & Academy website.

Shannon Lake Golf Course

43 minutes or 52.6km from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Type: Public, 18-Hole

Course Rating (from White Tees): M-67.7 / W-73.0

If you’re planning to golf in Kelowna, Shannon Lake Golf Course is an exceptional choice for beginners to intermediate-experience golfers. Tree-lined fairways favour golfers that hit straight off the tee. This cleverly designed course also incorporates the scenic Shannon Lake as a water hazard on its signature 17th hole, adding a little extra challenge before you round the final turn toward the clubhouse. We recommend that more experienced golfers play this course from a slightly further tee position than usual, as the yardage comes in at just 5681 from the whites.

 

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Reminder: Summer Greens Aeration: Monday, August 24 & Tuesday, August 25 (only 9 holes open both days).

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Fairview Mountain Golf Club

44 minutes or 46.1km from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Type: Public, 18-Hole

Course Rating (from White Tees): M-67.7 / W-73.5

One of British Columbia’s premier golf destinations, Fairview Mountain Golf Club is a must-play for the most avid golfers visiting Oliver, B.C. and the Okanagan region. This golf club is routinely mentioned in top-100 lists for the best golf courses in Canada, and it’s tough to find an alternative option with the same pristine conditions for the same reasonable price. A cart-mandatory course, each round at Fairview Mountain is hallmarked by spectacular vistas of the Okanagan Valley and Lake, making for an unforgettable golfing experience (no matter what your score is).

Osoyoos Golf Club

60 minutes or 65.8km from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Type: Public, 18-Hole

Course Ratings (from Silver/White Tees):

Desert Gold: M-67.1 / W-73.2 Park Meadows: M-67.5 / W-74.5

With two 18-hole options at the Osoyoos Golf Club, you can challenge yourself on either a cart-mandatory desert-style golf course, or a walkable park course with rolling hills and lush scenery around every turn. Both tracks have tee-off locations suitable for novice to pro-level golfers, making this club an ideal choice for those brave enough to double-down on their South Okanagan golf trip.

Book Your Golf Trip in the Okanagan Today

With social distancing rules remaining in place for the foreseeable future, the popularity of golf in British Columbia has never been greater. Whether you’re honing your golf abilities or just starting to get into the activity, Okanagan is an oasis for every level of golfer.

Why not take that golf trip you’ve always talked about? There’s never been a better time to play a round in the Okanagan Valley. Especially when you can take advantage of reduced guestroom rates for group bookings of 6 or more at Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre. To book, contact Susan Selles at susan.selles@rpbhotels.com or call (250) 493-9757. Minimum of 6 guest rooms per night. Seasonal offer subject to availability.


Photo by: Travel Penticton; Enjoy a day of riding with your family when you visit Penticton, B.C.

Penticton’s Best Biking Trails For Every Skill Level

Photo by: Travel Penticton; Enjoy a day of riding with your family when you visit Penticton, B.C.
Photo by: Travel Penticton; Enjoy a fun day of bike riding with your family when you visit Penticton, B.C.

Deciding what to do during your vacation to Penticton? 

From easy day trips on bike paths that end up at tasty wineries or beautiful beaches, to mountain biking trails that deliver excitement and unbeatable scenery, Penticton and the surrounding Okanagan region is well known for being a top cycling destination in British Columbia.

Get to know the best cycling trails surrounding Penticton. We’ve put together this guide to help any level of cycler find bike paths, mountain trails, bike rental and gear shops, and general information about what to expect when you hit the streets of Penticton on a bike. 

Select a category below to skip ahead to the information you want to see:

Road Biking

Photo by: Travel Penticton; bring your furry friends along when you bike the famous Kettle Valley Railway Trail.
Photo by: Travel Penticton; bring your furry friends along when you bike the famous Kettle Valley Railway Trail.

The city of Penticton has built a certified accessible route known as the Penticton Creek Pathway, which offers a 1.8km stretch of bike path that’s suitable for cyclists of any skill level. The city of Penticton put together a handy Google Map that marks this bike path along with attractions, dining, and restrooms en route. Save this map to your device and hit the road for a fun day of cycling with friends and family.

One of the most popular road biking paths in Penticton is the lake-to-lake route, from Okanagan Lake to Skaha Lake Park. This bike route takes approximately 25 minutes to complete, and riders can simply follow Main Street south the entire way, with the option of taking Skaha Lake Road southbound when it intersects with Main St.

Take a dip in both Okanagan Lake and Skaha Lake when you take the Penticton lake-to-lake bike route.
Take a dip in both Okanagan Lake and Skaha Lake when you take the Penticton lake-to-lake bike route.

Note that there will be some vehicle traffic along this local trail, however, the wide road makes for a safe and enjoyable bicycle ride through the city centre with a rewarding destination on either side. We recommend bringing your bathing suit and packing a picnic with fresh fruits and veggies from a Penticton farmer’s market!

Photo by: Travel Penticton; Single and tandem bike rentals are available from Penticton bicycle rental shops.
Photo by: Travel Penticton; Single and tandem bike rentals are available from many of Penticton's bicycle rental shops.

Recreational Cycling

The most popular choice for recreational cycling is the famous Kettle Valley Railway Trail. This 650km stretch of railway track was once Western Canada’s longest rail network, connecting Hope to Castlegar. Now, cyclists can enjoy riding along dirt and gravel pathways for their preferred distance of the trail. There are a few steep hills to start on the Penticton section of this trail, but overall the trail is rated easy to moderate for recreational cyclists.

Penticton marks the start of the Carmi Subdivision of the Kettle Valley Railway Trail, which includes the notable Myra Canyon. The most well-known biking path on the KVR for visitors to Penticton is the Naramata Section, which you can easily get to by following the trail just outside of Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre toward signs for Naramata.

The Naramata Section is known as the most popular section of the KVR, where you’ll see wineries, canyons, rivers and beautiful Okanagan Lake.
The Naramata Section is known as the most popular section of the KVR, where you’ll see wineries, canyons, rivers and beautiful Okanagan Lake.

A 10km bike ride up to the Naramata Bench starts your day of cycling, where you can expect to see vineyards, patios, and stunning views of Okanagan Lake. Many recreational cyclers in Penticton will bike to the Naramata community, about 16km away from the KVR intersection in front of Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre (an approx. 1 ½ hour ride).

Once in Naramata, you can stop to visit boutique stores or have lunch at a café. Then, decide whether to continue biking along the KVR to attractions such as Little Tunnel or Chute Lake, or simply turn around and enjoy the scenic views en route back to Penticton.If you want to get off the beaten path, speak with our front desk staff at Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre for more information about recreational cycling trails in Penticton, or visit the Penticton Visitor Centre website for a look at updated bicycle trail maps in the region.

Photo by: Travel Penticton; behold scenic views in every direction while you ride through Penticton's hillsides and vineyards.
Photo by: Travel Penticton; behold scenic views in every direction while you ride through Penticton's hillsides and vineyards.

Mountain Biking

Okanagan mountain biking trails are some of the best in Canada. There are a number of trails suited for beginners to expert level mountain bikers, and all of them are within a 30 minute drive of Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre. Some of the best Mountain Biking Trails near Penticton are located in the Three Blind Mice biking area, including:

  • Climb This Way — a Green-rated, .75km narrow trail that climbs up an old cow highway to challenge bikers with a rewarding view at the top.
  • Tsweet Tsue “Sweet Sue” — a Blue-rated narrow dirt pathway which meanders through twists and turns into gully near Okanagan Lake.
  • High Roller — a Black Diamond-rated trail with man-made boardwalks and rock rolls that expert mountain bikers visit for a thrilling ride.

For even more trails including pictures, trail types, maps, difficulty ratings, and all the information you need about the best mountain biking trails surrounding Penticton, we recommend viewing the Trailforks Penticton Region website.

Other popular Mountain Biking Destinations that you should put on your itinerary include the Campbell Mountain mountain biking region, Wiltse, and Skaha Bluffs, all kept up to date with the latest information by the Trailforks user community.

Photo by: Travel Penticton; With a variety of trail types designed for all skill levels, The Okanagan is a popular mountain biking destination.
Photo by: Travel Penticton; With a variety of trail types designed for all skill levels, The Okanagan is a popular mountain biking destination.

BMX Biking at Munson Mountain

Looking for a BMX biking park? Munson Mountain, located only a 6-minute drive from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre, has dirt tracks for BMX bikers, as well as hosts races and competitions which you can watch. Check out the Penticton BMX website for information on upcoming events and BMX park availability.

Tune up your bike, inflate your tires, and purchase parts, gear, and accessories at a local Penticton bicycle shop.
Tune up your bike, inflate your tires, and purchase parts, gear, and accessories at a local Penticton bicycle shop.

Bike Rental, Gear, and Tune-Up Shops

If you need to rent a bike, tighten a chain, fix your brakes or just inflate a tire, Penticton has a number of bicycle rental and repair shops located throughout the city. Our top choices for bicycle shops in Penticton and the surrounding region are linked below, including distances from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre.

  • Freedom Bike Shop (1.4km, ~10 mins walk from The Resort): offers maintenance and repairs, mountain and road bicycle rentals, trade-ins and bike purchases, parts and accessories. Staff are knowledgeable and friendly, a great resource for mountain biking trails and conditions in the Okanagan. Ask them about scheduling a biking tour in Penticton and the Okanagan Valley (*may have limited availability due to COVID-19).
  • Penticton Bike Rentals (1.4km, ~10 mins walk from The Resort): offers road and mountain bicycle rentals. You can also rent two, four, or six-person bicycles with an overhead canopy for the unique experience of group biking with friends and family around the city of Penticton. Penticton Bike Rentals also provides scooter, paddle board, and kayak rentals for those days when your legs need a break!
  • Sun n' Sup (in Naramata, 14.8km ~20 minutes drive from the Resort): offers bike rentals, kayak rentals, and stand up paddle board rentals. Sun n’ Sup rents bicycles that are ideal for easy biking trails such as the Kettle Valley Railway Trail, but does not offer single-track mountain bikes rentals at this time. Note that this vendor only takes debit and cash — no credit cards.

E-Bike Rentals In Penticton

The next era of biking has arrived in Penticton. E-Bike rentals are now available for cyclists who want a little assistance as they traverse the hills and pathways surrounding the region.

Pedego Electric Bikes opened its first Penticton Location on July 1, 2020, offering electric bike sales and rentals available by the hour, day, and week. Pedego is conveniently located at 37 Backstreet Boulevard, downtown Penticton, just two blocks away from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre.

Visit Pedego’s Penticton branch online to find the most up to date information on hours, rentals, and rates for e-bikes in Penticton.

Try an e-bike during your trip to Penticton by visiting Pedego Electric Bikes, located a few minutes away from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre.
Try an e-bike during your trip to Penticton by visiting Pedego Electric Bikes, located a few minutes away from Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre.
Photo by: Travel Penticton; Bordered between two stunning freshwater lakes, Penticton is the perfect place for a summer bicycle ride.
Photo by: Travel Penticton; Bordering two stunning freshwater lakes, Skaha Lake and Okanagan Lake Penticton is the perfect place for a summer bicycle ride.

Bicycles and Transit in The Okanagan

Penticton city busses are equipped with bike racks that can carry up to two bicycles at a time. If you’ve never used a city bus bike rack, just ask the bus driver to help you load your bicycle safely. Click here to see Penticton bus service times, schedules, and routes, or visit the BC Transit website to learn more about using bike racks on busses in the South Okanagan Similkameen region.

Courtesy Taxi and Klassic Kabs in Penticton can also accommodate bicycles in their vehicles. Contact them today to book a cab for you and your bike. 

If you’re in the Naramata region, contact The Naramata Taxi Co.

Photo by: Penticton Lakeside Resort; Amazing Patio Views at The Hooded Merganser Restaurant.
Photo by: Penticton Lakeside Resort; Amazing Patio Views at The Hooded Merganser Restaurant.

What to Do After Your Bike Trip

Make sure to fuel up after a long day of biking in the Penticton sunshine! The Barking Parrot Bar is a popular bar and patio serving cool drinks and hot food right next to Okanagan Lake. For family dining, The Hooded Merganser has delicious food made with local organic Okanagan ingredients. Both establishments are conveniently located steps away from your room when you book directly with Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre.

Photo by: Penticton Lakeside Resort; Enjoy comfort and relaxation after a day of biking when you book a guest suite at Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre.
Photo by: Penticton Lakeside Resort; Enjoy comfort and relaxation after a day of biking when you book a guest suite at Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre.

Booking a room at our top-rated Penticton resort also gives you access to exclusive amenities, including a private beach where you can relax and rest up your muscles before embarking on your next great Penticton biking adventure. Stay up to date with news and events by following Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre on Facebook and Instagram.


Supporting First Responders and Healthcare Heroes At Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

Supporting Our First Responders & Healthcare Heroes

Supporting First Responders and Healthcare Heroes At Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre
First Responders and Healthcare Heroes qualify for an exclusive discount during their stay.

As we make our way through the initial phases of reopening British Columbia, it’s important for us to remember the essential healthcare professionals who helped us reach this point safely.

At Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre, first responders and healthcare heroes can now enjoy a special package during their stay.

First Responders & Healthcare Heroes Package

De-stress and relax on a domestic vacation in our little slice of paradise in the Okanagan. Quote or mention HERO when you reserve your room to receive a special package offering.

INCLUDES:

  • Exclusive $159 Starting Rate
  • Pet-Friendly Rooms Available
  • To book, please call 1.800.663.9400 or email Lakeside@rpbhotels.com

Full details of this package are available here.

Relax on a local vacation to Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre
See what we're doing to help keep our guests safe at Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre.

What Are Our Healthcare Heroes Saying About Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre?

Here is some recent feedback we received from our first responders and healthcare heroes after their local vacation to Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre:

“Our room in the new West Tower is beautiful! We will definitely be back. I have been working full time, including evenings and every weekend, since mid February and this is just the break I needed. Thank you!”
 - Employee, BC Centre for Disease Control and the Provincial Health Services Authority.

“Great offer. Job well done in tough times!”
- Anesthesiologist, British Columbia

“This was exactly what we needed. We celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary with you and enjoyed our stay so much that we extended for a couple more nights and invited the kids to join us. So incredibly relaxing. We thoroughly enjoyed the amenities despite the strange weather. The pool and hot tub were both wonderful. Hubby enjoyed the use of the onsite gym. Coffee shop and restaurant had excellent service. All staff from check in, cleaners and concierge have been so hospitable, friendly and accommodating. Would highly recommend Lakeside Resort. Views are beautiful. Rooms are so comfortable.”
- Registered Nurse, Kelowna General Hospital

“Very happy overall with our stay in the hotel.”
- Registered Nurse, British Columbia

If you’re a first responder or healthcare hero, reserve your room today to save on a much-needed vacation to one of British Columbia’s most popular 2020 local tourist destinations.


Discover Penticton, British Columbia: Seattle to Penticton in under 6 hours

Travelling to Penticton is convenient from nearly anywhere in Washington State, with a drive time of approximately five and half hours from Seattle, and daily flights that run under an hour and a half.

Unparalleled views and affordable accommodations are just a 6-hour drive from Seattle.

Can’t wait that long to get here? Take a flight directly from Seattle to the Kelowna airport, and enjoy a scenic 50-minute drive around Okanagan lake. Total travel time: 2 hours.

Flights run daily from Seattle to Kelowna, cutting total travel time by a third.

To help our continental companions discover the heart of the Okanagan, we’ve put together this handy itinerary describing an affordable and rewarding adventure that arrives at the luxurious accommodations of Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre.

Driving to Penticton: The Scenic Route

Penticton is the destination but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t enjoy the journey. Our proposed itinerary is slightly longer than 6 hours (by 20 minutes) but it’s filled with scenic views and enjoyable stops along the way.

What to see on your drive from Seattle and Penticton

First stop: Leavenworth — Get a taste of European-design with buildings & food that will make you believe you’ve arrived at the Alps. Washington’s Bavarian-style village is nestled in the Cascade Mountains and sits on the often rapid Wenatchee River. Keep an eye out for eagles and osprey soaring above!

USA or Europe — can you tell the difference?

Next up: Brewster and Lake Pateros — Fed from the Columbia River, Lake Pateros is a perfect spot (just over half way) to stretch, grab a coffee, or take a quick dip in the cool waters.

Take a break and jump into the cool waters of the Columbia River near Lake Pateros. Next stop, Canada!

Getting to the border: what to expect — From Brewster and Lake Pateros, you can drive up highway 97 through scenic farmlands and vineyards until arriving at the border of the USA and Canada. Have a friendly chat with the Canadian border agent as you pass through — the crossing is open 24-hours and rarely has a wait time over 15 minutes. 

The border crossing at Oroville-Osoyoos is located directly beside the southern portion of Osoyoos Lake.

Penticton: one hour to go  — Welcome to Canada! You only have a short distance to go. Drive passed South Okanagan grasslands, through the quaint town of Oliver, and alongside stunning Skaha Lake until arriving at the front doors of your luxurious accommodations, Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre.

No matter what your preferred method of travel is, Penticton is just a short trip away. 

After arriving, it’s important that you know how to make the most of your time — even if it’s on a shoestring budget. Check out our next post covering Penticton’s best free activities to learn what to do. After, of course, you’ve unpacked your luggage and spent a few hours relaxing by the lake.


Penticton Lakeside Resort to open modern new tower just in time for summer 2017

The Penticton Lakeside Resort is expanding its hotel inventory with construction of the new West Wing Tower set to hold 70 modern suites. Construction began this past Spring and is scheduled to be completed just in time for summer next year. The tower will be opened in June 2017 and will feature a contemporary wood design in every suite, with lake and mountain views.

Of the large room expansion, Penticton Lakeside Resort’s Director of Sales and Marketing Barb Haynes, said, “All will be king bedrooms with a very contemporary design and wood construction. It is a beautiful building. One of our local businesses, Structurlam, is a key partner in supplying their product to us. Their products have won several architectural design awards and are stunning. We are really looking forward to adding this new wing into our hotel.”

The new suites will be designed to accommodate guests of all walks of life, from families to business travellers. The rooms will have work stations, safes, seating area with fireplaces, spacious bathrooms, walk-in showers and coffee stations featuring Starbucks products. These rooms will be in addition to the already five floors of accommodation currently available to guests at the resort which include queen, king, executive, jet-tub and penthouse suites.


Experience Penticton's most exciting events for less

Regardless of season, Penticton always has something going on and October is no different. October is an especially exciting month in the Okanagan as Penticton plays host two huge fall events. Even better, Penticton Lakeside Resort has teamed up with both Cropped and Oktoberfest to provide visitors with the best accommodation packages in town. Whether you’ve been considering a fall weekend getaway for a while now or simply want to enjoy the festivals in style, Penticton Lakeside Resort’s exclusive hotel deals will give you the ultimate weekend in the Okanagan Valley.

 

Cropped By Valley First (wine tasting and farmer’s market event)

When: October 7th- October 8th, 2016

Do you like wine, good music and delicious, local food? Then the Cropped by Valley First event is absolutely perfect for you. With over 80 wineries and farmers participating in the event, guests will have access to dozens of unique wine tastings, food seminars and musical acts throughout the two day event. The best part? Penticton Lakeside Resort has a fantastic hotel package offer available to eager event goers. Enjoy a one night stay and two tickets to either day for only $250.50. The perfect deal for couples looking to enjoy a few drinks responsibly or those who simply want to spend a night in the Okanagan with good food, drinks and entertainment! If it’s single tickets you’re looking for however, Valley First offers tickets here including an all inclusive ticket option that includes all wine tastings, catered food and a taxi ride home for only $75!

Celebrate Oktoberfest with traditional beer and pretzels.
Celebrate Oktoberfest with traditional beer and pretzels.

Oktoberfest

When: October 22nd, 2016

We may not be in Munich, Germany but that doesn’t mean we can’t celebrate Oktoberfest in grand fashion right here in Penticton. Penticton puts its own spin on Oktoberfest with mouth-watering food, delicious drinks and endless entertainment! Dancing is a must at the seventh annual Oktoberfest so come down to the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre if you’re down for a night of dancing and traditional beer drinking. Even better, Penticton Lakeside Resort has an exclusive hotel and festival package up for grabs leading up to the event on October 22nd: Enjoy one night’s accommodation and two Oktoberfest tickets for only $168 per couple! Single tickets are also available for $35 online and in person at Valley First.


First responders and Healthcare professionals special package available at Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre

13 things you didn’t know about Penticton Lakeside Resort

We sat down with Penticton Lakeside Resort’s Director of Sales and Marketing, Barb Haynes, to get the scoop on all things Penticton. As a Penticton resident for the past 23 years, Barb knows a thing or two about this famous Okanagan town- and some of its best kept secrets too!

Read on to discover them all and how to make the most of your trip to the Okanagan:

 

How is the Penticton Lakeside Resort unique from other hotels in the Okanagan?

Barb: We’re located on the south shore of the Okanagan Lake and we’re the only accommodation in Penticton with a private beach for its guests! We’re full service and offer great dining options with weekly entertainment on our patio.

I think one of the most significant characteristics of the hotel is that it anchors the downtown core on its north end. You can walk to just about anything and the incredibly popular farmer’s market is right outside our front door.

What are some of the best features of the resort?

Our private beach for sure…it offers full service with drinks and food, towels, beach chairs and lots of sun! All our restaurants have patios that look out onto the lake.

I think one of the most unique features of our restaurant, the Hooded Merganser, is that it’s supplied with fresh produce, in season, from our very own Valley View Farm. Our general manager and his family live at the farm and our farm manager delivers food daily to the Hood. We also use all of our own herbs grown fresh here in the gardens at the hotel.

Speaking of food...what is your favourite dish at the Hooded Merganser restaurant?

The grilled lamb chops! The Hooded Merganser does an amazing job of them and sometimes when you order lamb at a restaurant it doesn’t live up to your expectations…at the Hooded Merganser it always does for me.

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Dish in the making! Behind the scenes at the Hooded Merganser.

What’s something cool about Penticton that visitors may not know about?

Our community was established as an agricultural area providing fruits and produce to our province in the early years. Much was shipped via rail on the Kettle Valley train system. With the changes in access to food internationally and the train system disappearing, Penticton has seen a reduction in its orchards. Vineyards have been developed creating a burgeoning wine industry that is unique to our area. We feature the small to mid-sized wineries where you can enjoy a glass, meet the winemaker and tour a vineyard all in easy access. We have also developed an amazing farm-to-table industry, again highlighting the incredible growing season we experience here in the South Okanagan.

The Kettle Valley Rail system is being redeveloped into a major tourism attraction where folks can ride their bikes from Hope to Christina Lake, and from Rock Creek to Vernon. Penticton is a stop along the way and we’re looking forward to hosting our travellers…think west coast trail on bikes!

What is the best part of your position as Director of Sales & Marketing?

I would say working with the amazing team here at the resort and our external contractors. I love the team approach and the great pool of both skills and ideas that come to the table when you work together. I also really like to help create vision and then develop the path to get there.

What’s a typical day like for you?

Sometimes it can be crazy! We have such a diverse line of products, we are always working to stay ahead of the seasons. So, sometimes in the heat of summer we’re planning for the upcoming winter season and vice versa. My day is often filled with staying current on local news, keeping up to date on the daily hotel activities…who are we hosting, what’s happening…and dreaming of new ideas to sell our resort and its amenities!

What is your favourite part of the hotel?

I would say the patios because of the views, the weather, the buzz of activity…it feels like you’re away on vacation every day.

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Penticton Lakeside Resort's private beach and marina.

When do you recommend coming to visit Penticton Lakeside Resort, and why?

Just about anytime! In the summer, we see lots of families and folks participating in a variety of events. Spring, summer and fall bring groups of friends looking to explore our wine region and the winter season attracts snowbirds from the prairie provinces looking to escape the cold…our temperatures are much milder! We also have a robust convention season in our shoulder periods and we are already booking into 2017 for destination weddings.

What’s something exciting guests have to look forward to in the coming year at Penticton Lakeside Resort?

The new accommodation wing that we are currently constructing. It will add 70 rooms to our inventory where the majority of rooms will have a lakeview. All will be king bedrooms and suites with a very contemporary design and wood construction. It is a beautiful building. One of our local businesses, Structurlam, is a key partner in supplying their product to us. Their products have won several architectural design awards and are stunning! We are really looking forward to adding this new wing into our hotel.

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The stunning view from one of Penticton's local beaches.

What are the must sees of Penticton?

The lakes for sure. Penticton is one of the very few communities bordered by two lakes in the world! Our beaches are amazing! Our wine region…you can wander from winery to winery with views that will blow your mind and a quaintness that makes you feel instantly at home.

Our cycling routes…both road and off-road. We have put considerable resources into our routes to map and maintain them for cyclists. Our trail riding is excellent with wineries along the way for stops and our mountain biking is world-renowned.

In the summer, you gotta buy fruit…everyone does! And don’t forget to check our Skaha Bluffs, our climbing park. It, too, is really popular.

What do you consider the best beach in Penticton and the surrounding area?

Sudbury Beach on Skaha Lake was just recognized as one of the Top 10 Beaches in Canada. It’s a great swimming beach, warm water, lots of amenities and easy access to several of the campsites and motels. Okanagan Lake is famous for its restaurants and walkway…as well as its beach! Both shores are spectacular.

What made you decide to call Penticton home?

My husband and I wanted a complete lifestyle change! Our kids were young and we wanted a less crazy life for them. Both my husband and I grew up by the coast and the kids were born there. We made the change 23 years ago and have never looked back. Best decision ever!

Describe Penticton in 3 words:

Picturesque, laid-back, sumptuous – in its food, wine, beaches, land, views and water systems.


The 3 Penticton events you have to check out this September

Summer may be done but the fun is far from over in Penticton. September is a busy month for the city with three major events taking place in town. If you’ve been thinking about visiting the Okanagan Valley this month, now is the time. Besides our favourite go-to attractions that include our water sports, ice rink, private beach, restaurants and endless outdoor fun, these three events are guaranteed to liven up your visit. From an annual jazz festival to our very own grape stomping event, enjoy the best Penticton has to offer and prepare to be entertained!

 

1. Penticton Hot Jazz Festival

September 9th-11th, 2016

Jazz concert

In collaboration with big name sponsors TD and Global TV, the Hot Jazz Festival will be hitting Penticton for its annual celebration of jazz music. With it being the 20th anniversary of the festival, organizers are sure to take it up a notch with a diverse lineup of bands and concerts confirmed for the three day event. Festival favourites Tom Hook and The Terrier Brothers as well as Dave Bennett and The Memphis Speed Kings will perform, not too mention industry darlings Cornet Chop Suey. Tickets cost $60 for Friday performances, $75 for Saturday and $55 for Sunday festivities. With over 11 bands scheduled to perform at four locations throughout the festival, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to catch them all over the course of the weekend! Tickets can be purchased here.

 

2. Dragon Boat Festival

September 10th and 11th, 2016

DragonboatI

f you’re looking for something unique to do while in town, the 16th annual Penticton Dragon Boat Festival will be right up your alley. With a beverage garden, food, vendors, entertainment and thousands of athletes competing for the grand prize, this is one Penticton event you don’t want to miss!  Come down to Skaha Lake to take in the 500 meter dragon boat races over the course of two days-with qualifying heats on Saturday, semi finals on Sunday morning and finals on Sunday afternoon. To register for the race, head over to the festival’s official site for sign up details.

 

3. Great Grape Lake Stomp

September 9th, 2016

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With a large private beach to call our own, we’d be foolish not to take advantage of all that space- which is why we’re hosting the Great Grape Lake Stomp on September 9th. Sponsored by Sun Fm and Hester Creek, Penticton Lakeside Resort is turning its private beach into an entertainment ground featuring a live DJ, food and beverages. Let’s not forget the main event: teams will be facing off against each other in a grape stomp off that includes spectators and complimentary wine and food for participants. Registration costs $70 per team (four members per team) so sign up or call us today (# 250-493-8221) to get your grape stomp on! Guests of the hotel are more than welcome to take part or stop by to take in all of the fun!


Valley First Challenge Penticton

In a few short days it will be time again for the Valley First Challenge here in Penticton, and the whole Okanagan Valley is already buzzing with activity. As the city prepares to welcome the world to the Penticton lakeside community, many athletes are already here, ready to race.

 

Event details

The 2016 Valley First Callenge in Penticton is happening from August 24th through August 28th. It will feature four major events categories: duathlon, aquathlon, cross triathlon, and long course triathlon. Read on for the details within each category.

Duathlon

In the duathlon category athletes will be competing at the national level in a 10 kilometer run, followed by a 40 kilometer bike ride, ending with another 5 kilometers running. This is a truly difficult challenge, and pacing is critical for anyone aiming to become the next Canadian Duathlon National Champion!

Aquathlon

In the aquathlon category, racers swim for 1 kilometer and then run for five kilometers. This race is known as the fast and furious event, with athletes using the first kilometer in the water to focus themselves and take the lead. The remaining five kilometers on land is all about maintaining a breakneck pace and enough of a lead to stay ahead of your competition. If you're hoping to become the next Canadian Aquathlon National Champion, get ready to race against some serious speed demons on both water and land!

Cross triathlon

The cross triathlon event consists of a 1.5 kilometer swim, followed by a quick 27 kilometers cycling, rounded off with another 10 kilometers running off road. The off road sections of this challenge are filled with spectacular natural beauty—not to mention all of the rugged challenges you'd expect from an off road course. The Canadian Cross Triathlon National Champion is invariably a star athlete who doesn't mind getting dirty!

Long course triathlon

The long course triathlon event consists of a 3 kilometer swim, followed by a grueling 120 kilometers cycling, with a final 30 kilometers running on foot—for those who can handle it. This is a brand new distance for Challenge Penticton and a serious long course for world-class athletes. To take the title of Canadian Long Course Triathlon National Champion it take stamina, strength, and sheer will power.

One of the nicest things about this event is the stunning natural beauty contests will enjoy as they compete. Swimmers start on the beaches of Okanagan Lake and end up in the transition in the park. From there, racers cycle along the shores of Okanagan Lake, through downtown Penticton, and then through a series of lush, green rolling hills surrounding Skaha Lake. Finally, for the running portion of the event, athletes take the channel that connects Skaha and Okanagan lakes, enjoying the breezes from the lakes and the views.

If winning the title of National Champion isn't enough, these festival events also serve to qualify athletes for spots in the inaugural International Triathlon Union (ITU) Multisport World Championships Festival. This exciting event will be held on August 18th-27th, 2017 in Penticton. Athletes will compete for 10 qualifying slots, 5 per gender, in each event, for each 5-year age group division.

Two triathlon participants running into the water for swim portion of race.
Two triathlon participants running into the water for swim portion of race.

Why participate in the events?

There are so many great reasons to get involved as an athlete. Canadian athletes can earn their spot in the 2017 ITU World Multisport Championships by participating and return to Penticton next year. Non-Canadian athletes can experience the course that the world will be watching in 2017, and prove their skill and endurance within a world community of athletes. All racers will love competing in Penticton, a triathlon community with decades of long distance history and tons of amazing volunteers.

This brings us to the reasons for getting involved as a volunteer! Penticton has a reputation as a friendly, warm, giving community of people who care deeply about the racing events hosted in their town. Being a volunteer is a fun, exciting experience, and it's a great feeling joining that community of people who care so much about the city and its events. It's also a fantastic way to see the races up close and personal, and get involved with the athletes.

Everyone who participates, from athletes to volunteers, gets to enjoy the beautiful weather, warm sunshine and lakes, and fantastic food and wine of the event and the city. Don't miss out on the experience of really getting involved!

 

This is one of the most exciting events in Penticton, a city which hosts awesome conferences, arts gatherings, food and wine festivals, and other events all year long. This is a don't miss event, for athletes, food and wine aficionados, and anyone who enjoys great weather and good times.

 

 

 

 


An American in Canada: Traveling to the Okanagan Valley (Part 2)

This is the 2nd part of our two part blog series, An American in Canada: Traveling in the Okanagan Valley.

The Okanagan Valley is the perfect vacation spot for Americans not wanting to waste precious time traveling to foreign destinations. What follows is the second part of my detailed look at what an American travelling the Okanagan Valley can expect, and why it’s the perfect choice for travelers from the USA.

What are some of the hidden gems of the Okanagan Valley? Here are a few that Americans will love most.

 

Hidden Okanagan Valley

Kettle Valley Railway and Myra Canyon trestles

The Kettle Valley Trail was once the region’s rail corridor, connecting industrial supplies and workers along with residents across the area. The railroad itself was in operation between 1915 and 1989, and the railroad was later transformed into a multi-use recreational trail.

This is a hidden gem in the valley because there is truly something for everyone along this unique landmark; the scenery and wildlife are unparalleled, the recreational options are fantastic, the historical and cultural significance equates to fascinating activities, and various amenities connected to local wineries are also within reach along this passageway.

Myra Canyon is a beautifully maintained portion of 18 giant trestle bridges and two tunnels along the former Kettle Valley Railway. Hiking (or biking) the 12 kilometer section with the trestles offers fantastic views over the lake. And if you’re a history buff, join a historical tour that describes the century of history surrounding these trestles and the railway, including the major fires in 2003 and the rebuilding that followed.

Penticton Farmer’s Market

The British Columbia Association of Farmers’ Markets named the Penticton Farmers’ Market 2015 Farmer’s Market of the Year in the medium-sized market category and it is the largest in the Okanagan Valley. This hidden treasure of the valley features hand-crafted goods from hundreds of vendors, so visit for antiques, clothing, collectables, food, furniture, jewelry and more, not to mention lots of great live entertainment for the whole family.

SS Sicamous

The SS Sicamous began its life in May of 1914 as a luxury passenger vessel serving isolated communities along the Okanagan Lake. By 1936 the SS Sicamous was retired to the Okanagan Landing Ship Yards where it sat in silence until 1951 when it was purchased for the princely sum of $1.00 by the City of Penticton.

In 1952 the Penticton Gyro Club, hoping to preserve the vessel for posterity, fitted the SS Sicamous with running water, electricity and restorations. Between the 1950s and the 1980s, the boat was home to all manner of businesses and organizations from restaurants to beauty salons, but by the late 80s it had fallen into disrepair.

The final restoration process began in earnest in 1988, and today the SS Sicamous is a stunning reminder of Canada’s cultural heritage. The vessel is home to a museum and a fun visit for visitors to the Okanagan Valley.

Canadian culture for Americans

You may think that Canadian culture is too similar to US culture to care about taking it in, but you couldn’t be further off the mark. The Okanagan Valley is filled with unique, fun cultural experiences Americans should try while in the area.

First nations

The Okanagan Valley is a multicultural region and is in fact named for some of its first nation citizens. As a visitor to the valley you will be able to experience the rich history of the indigenous peoples in the area through their clothing, food, jewelry, historical landmarks, medicine, traditional events and tools. Visit the Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre near Osoyoos or the Secwepemc Museum and Heritage Park near Kamloops to take in evidence of the original peoples of the valley such as the circular pit houses or kekulis they inhabited.

European immigrants in the 1800s

Europeans arrived in British Columbia in the 1800s as Simon Fraser and others mapped and explored the area. Today’s Kamloops is the site of the North West Company’s original fur-trading post which was established in 1812; this was the first non-native settlement in the region. Once gold was discovered in the late 1850s, the population boom of the era began and immigrants arrived in huge waves. To experience the Okanagan Valley of the gold rush era, visit Historic Hat Creek Ranch for a taste of the old road house life.

Orchards and vineyards

Father Charles Pandosy was the first arrival in the Okanagan Valley to seize upon the idea of planting orchards and vineyards; he is responsible for planting the first in BC. He also founded the first school in the region and the first Roman Catholic mission in 1860; this mission near Kelowna has been beautifully restored and can be toured today.

The Doukhobor pacifist culture

Another cultural feature that is unique to the region is the Doukhobors. This pacifist sect originated in Russia but fled persecution in the early twentieth century. Settling near Grand Forks, the Doukhobors became a prominent cultural force in the Okanagan Valley between 1909 and 1913, a location perfect for farming and their goal of being self-sufficient. The cultural influence of the sect remains today, and as you travel locally you can visit the Doukhobor flour mill and the Hardy Mountain Douhkobor Village Historic Site—and stop for lunch in a local eatery and get some wonderful borscht and blintzes.

Ghost towns

After the gold rush, the railroad industry, and the coal mining towns of yesteryear all waned, various mining and industrial towns that dotted the Okanagan Valley dried up and turned into ghost towns. Take the Dewdney Trail beginning in Princeton to visit them, and don’t miss Blakeburn and Granite City.

The smallest city in Canada with a fascinating history

Greenwood, Canada is the smallest city in the country with only 625 citizens, and this alone makes it an interesting visit. But more than that, its historic importance should keep Greenwood on your list. Greenwood was the site of a World War II internment camp, and with approximately 1,000 internees flooding the tiny town during the war, the town changed significantly.

Many internees stayed in Greenwood permanently after the war, changing the face of the town forever and transforming it culturally in a totally unique way. The 1998 Oscar-nominated film Snow Falling on Cedars, which told the story of Japanese-American internees, was shot in Greenwood.

Napa 2.0: A new wine country experience for Americans

Napa Valley gets all of the press when it comes to wine country, but Okanagan Valley gives Napa a run for its money.

Okanagan Lake stretches through the valley for 70 miles between the Monashee and Cascade ranges. The valley’s walls rise around the lake, and they are almost completely covered with orchards and vineyards—the fruit basket of Canada. Visiting from spring, through summer and into the beginning of autumn, the air itself smells of fruit.

The entire Okanagan Valley is filled with small-batch wineries run by true aficionados who man the grounds and tasting rooms themselves—more than 200 of them. The wines in the region express the land and weather where they are produced.

Towards the northern end of Okanagan Valley the orchards are situated and the temperatures are cooler; these conditions produce fresh, crisp white wines. In the southern portion of the valley, where it is drier and warmer, more reds such as cabernet sauvignons and merlots are produced.

As has happened in California, Okanagan Valley growers have replaced native American vines with high-quality European varietals, further improving their wines. Local wineries such as Cedar Creek have even won multiple gold medals at prestigious American wine competitions like the Los Angeles County Fair Wines of the World.

One of the best ways to enjoy the wine and wineries of the Okanagan Valley is to take a cycle-to-winery tour. There are multiple versions of this kind of tour in the area, and all allow you to experience a huge range of products, take in breathtaking scenery, and finish with a gourmet meal in a stunning setting.

And the place where the Okanagan Valley clearly takes the lead over Napa Valley? Price and value. Okanagan Valley is a younger wine region and the prices reflect that. And with a current exchange rate of about 1 US dollar for every 1.26 Canadian, you’re saving a lot of money there, too.

Wineries to visit in the Okanagan Valley:

For a list of wineries: http://www.winebc.com/discover-bc/okanagan-valley

For some critics’ picks: http://www.winespectator.com/wct/region/rid/101

http://www.fodors.com/world/north-america/canada/british-columbia/okanagan-wine-country

http://www.winesofcanada.com/featured_winery_visit2015.html

Nightlife, arts, and music to suit the American sense of taste and style

Arts and entertainment are widely expressed in the Okanagan Valley, and performing arts centres in the region share a common mission of artistic, creative, and cultural development. Locals, travelers, and artists from all over the world converge here for drumming and jam sessions, creative arts workshops; performances and Indigenous events.

Great events are showcased in the many fine Okanagan Valley theatres. A huge range of events come through the area, and between the South Okanagan Performing Arts Centre, Ballet Kelowna, the Many Hats Theatre, the Vernon Performing Arts Theatre, the Cleland Theatre, the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra, the Sunshine Theatre Company and many other venues and troupes, there is almost always a range of nightlife and cultural options to suit almost anyone.

Penticton and Kelowna are the arts and nightlife hubs in the Okanagan Valley. The Soundstage Productions annual musical theatre show at the Penticton Lakeside Resort draws lots of excited crowds, as do the Penticton Art and Tumbleweed Galleries.

Downtown Penticton puts on the annual sunshine cabaret summer concert series in Gyro Park that includes the night market. The Barking Parrot Bar has a large patio just steps from Okanagan Lake and offers entertainment throughout the year including summer patio music. The Mule Night Club is open late for those wishing to hit the dance floor for most of the night.

The Kiwanis Music and Speech Arts Festival is an Okanagan Valley spring tradition for amateur performing artists. Each year in March and April participants compete in brass, dance, piano, speech arts, vocals, woodwinds, and other areas just before the Kelowna Kiwanis Music Festival.

The Pacific NW Elvis Festival, also called the Penticton Elvis Festival, is a three day long Elvis celebration—and what could be more American than that?! Elvis impersonators come from all over the world for this event, but there can be only one winner each year in Penticton on the shores of Okanagan Lake. And you can take in the Elvis mania on the same weekend as the Peach City Beach Cruise, right at the start of summer in early June.

Speaking of things uniquely American, you can attend some amazing jazz festivals in the Okanagan Valley. The annual BC Interior Jazz Festival is in Kelowna in April each year and has been in existence for more than 35 years.

The Salmon Arm Roots and Blues Festival is a summertime jazz offering, taking place in August of each year at the Salmon Arm BC Fair Grounds.

The Pentastic Hot Jazz Festival happens just after Labor Day each year in Penticton, and the Rare Earth Jazz and Blues Fest takes place in Vernon.

For more fun arts and culture that Americans can relate to, check out the Summerland Bluegrass Festival in June at the Summerland BC Rodeo Grounds. And if you like to play, bring your instrument and join in!

Or, if dancing is more your thing, wait until August and the Penticton Square Dance Festival during the Penticton Peach Festival; there you can square dance for four solid days with 800 other enthusiasts.

The Funtastic Sport and Music Festival in Vernon is home to Canada’s biggest slow pitch softball tournament. For the last 25 years the event has taken place in early July over the long Canada Day weekend, and Americans will love this four day long softball and music party.

Family time in the Okanagan Valley

The family vacation is an American tradition and the Okanagan Valley is the perfect place to carry on with it. Here are just a few of the awesome family-friendly things to do in the valley.

Ice skating and skateboarding

For your boarding buddies, Penticton is home to a huge skate park alongside Riverside Park. Admission is free, the park has lots of events during the summer months, and it is supervised. Bonus: Loco Landing Mini Golf Mini golf is right next door, and it also has bumper boats, bungee bouncing, go karts and rock wall climbing. During the winter months head over to Kelowna for outdoor ice skating at Stuart Park on Water Street. It’s a pretty, well-groomed rink near the lake and a fun place to hang out with some cocoa, too.

Penticton Speedway

If you have a need for speed, hit the Penticton Speedway for some family-friendly oval track auto racing. On the weekends there are both day and night races and lots of fun entertainment.

Osoyoos

Head south to the desert region of the Okanagan Valley and visit the Osoyoos Desert Center. There you can explore the unique desert ecosystem and its flora and fauna. This is also the perfect trip for a stop at the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory for a look into a massive radio telescope.

Kelowna

Kelowna isn’t a huge metropolis, but they’ve got the market cornered on parks. Visit the Hot Sands Beach and City Park for water sports rentals and beach fun as well as a boardwalk and playground with zipline and waterpark.

The Mission Creek Park has a great playground and rope pyramid as well as an indoor Environment Educational Center (EECO) where you can observe Kokanee salmon spawning right there in town from late September to early October.

Fruit orchards

There are lots of opportunities for picking your own fruit in the Okanagan Valley (as long as it’s not winter). It’s a wonderful experience for kids, and a tasty one!

Family-friendly wineries and distilleries

Believe it or not, there are lots of family-friendly wineries in the Okanagan Valley! Most offer interesting educational activities for kids as well as lots of fun. If you’ve been wondering how to get some wine time in with your kids in tow, you can do it here.

If distilled spirits are more your thing, visit the Okanagan Spirits Distillery. Your kids will be fascinated by the gigantic, bubbling copper distiller and it’s right near the park, the marina and ice cream.

Conclusion

Have you packed your bags yet? The Okanagan Valley is the perfect trip for an American on the go. There is literally something for everyone here, yet it’s only a quick, cheap flight away. You’ll love the experience of doing new, exciting things without breaking the bank or needing a translator, too!