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22 Best Things to do in Penticton, BC

22 Best Things to do in Penticton, BC

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Penticton, BC is located in the province’s prized Okanagan region. The area is known for stunning wineries, large beautiful lakes, and idyllic weather. While tourism here is strong all year round, the majority of tourists flock to this area in the summer months between May to September.  

Penticton’s semi-arid climate sees some of the least amounts of rain in the province. In fact, Penticton enjoys roughly 300 days of sunshine a year, making it a perfect summer vacation destination!

This small town of only 33,000 people is a hub for tourism being tucked in between the famous Okanagan Lake to the north and Skaha Lake to the south. Despite its smaller size, I always have such a great time exploring the many activities in Penticton.

Penticton is one of BC’s top vacation destinations, and I’m sure you’ll understand why after you visit for yourself.

We’ve been fortunate to visit Penticton several different times (Bailey grew up not far from there in another Okanagan town called Salmon Arm, after all.) So luckily for you, we’ve bundled all of our knowledge about the city into this blog – your complete guide to visiting Pentiction, BC including all of the fun things to do and see!

Things to do in Penticton, British Columbia

1. Go wine tasting  

Tasting wine at Moraine Estate Winery in Penticton, Canada
Delicious
Bailey drinks wine at Moraine Estate Winery, Canada
My happy place!

If there’s one thing the Okanagan does right, it’s wine! The entire Okanagan region stretches in the perfect climate to produce delicious grapes and even better wine. On the northeast side of Penticton, there is a region called Naramata that is famous in Canada for delivering delicious wine with unbeatable lake views.

Of all the Penticton attractions, visiting the Naramata wineries is consistently rated as the top activity in the city. 

As going wine tasting is one of the most popular things to do in Penticton, I highly recommend booking your tastings ahead of time to ensure you get a spot. While most vineyards will try to accommodate walk-ins, the wineries get quite busy, especially in the summer months. Tastings typically take around half an hour and come with a tasting fee to sample the vineyard’s signature wines.  

There are over 40 wineries in the Naramata/Penticton region. With so many amazing options in the area, it’s safe to say you can’t go wrong, but I do have some favorites. Poplar Grove Winery is one of the most famous in the area being a family owned winery open 11 am – 5 pm with a $10 CAD ($7 USD) tasting fee.

Moraine Winery is another great option for Penticton wineries open year round with a $15 CAD ($11 USD) tasting fee for 4 signature wines of your choosing that is waived with the purchase of wine. I love the view of the lake from here, too (pictured above.)

I also had such a great time visiting Ruby Blues, a rock & roll style boutique vineyard. Bench 1775 has a great patio that delivers stunning views, delicious wine, and a really great bistro on site. Nichol Vineyard & Estate is one of the oldest wineries in the region and offers seated patio tastings. All three of these wineries are open between 11 am and 5 pm and have a $10 CAD ($7 USD) tasting fee that is waived with the purchase of a bottle of wine. 

The van at Ruby Blues winery in Penticton, Canada
The famous Ruby Blues van!

To get between the wineries, you can choose to either drive yourself, book a guided tour or take the new hop-on hop-off trolley. While driving is definitely the easiest way to get between the vineyards, you will need to organize a designated driver (drinking and driving is very serious in Canada and not worth the risk!)

The hop-on hop-off trolley bus is one of the best ways to get to many of the popular wineries in the area for cheap. It only costs $45 CAD ($33 USD) for a full-day adult pass. The trolley is family-friendly, with 13-18-year-old kids being $15 CAD ($11 USD) and children under 12 being free. However, you do need to get yourself to its departure point and book all of your own wine tastings.

If you’re like me and would rather just drink the wine and not have to worry about having a designated driver, booking a wine tour in Penticton is a great option. If you want to see the area as you drink your wine and love being outdoors, a cycle wine tour could be a great option. If you’re focused on wine, there are lots of traditional wine tours as well that simply shuttle you between vineyards. 

This Velo Vino wine & bike tour is a really fun half-day tour that requires some physical fitness but rewards in stunning views of the Okanagan Valley. This tour costs $189 CAD ($139 USD), includes lunch and bicycle rental but does not include the winery tasting fees.

You will meet downtown Penticton before taking a 25-minute shuttle to the start of the Kettle Valley Railway, a beautiful decommissioned rail trail that runs through the area. You will spend your day visiting some of the beautiful wineries in the Naramata region and stop for a delicious included lunch.  

The vines at Moraine Estate Winery, Penticton
What a beautiful place to drink wine!

If you’d rather book a tour that drives you between the stunning wineries in the Naramata region, this 5 winery tour through the Naramata region is a great option. For $225 CAD ($166 USD) you will be shuttled between 5 of the best wineries in Naramata. On this tour, you will visit Poplar Grove Winery, Hillside Winery, Deep Roots Winery, Tightrope Winery, and Lake Breeze Winery. All tasting fees are included and the shuttle can be organized from your hotel, meaning all you have to focus on is the flavors of the wine and having the best time!  

Or course, wine tasting in Pentiction is super popular for bachelorette parties, too. What better way to celebrate a new bride than to have your bachelorette party touring the best Okanagan wineries? This Okanagan bachelorette party wine tasting tour costs $339 CAD ($250 USD) and is the perfect party for the bride-to-be and her friends.

The tour includes round trip transport from your hotel, lunch and will tour you through some of the best wineries in the region. My favorite part is this tour is completely customizable with the ability to add in photographers, stops for dessert, and anything else you need to make this an unforgettable experience.  

The truth is, whichever way you choose to visit the wineries near Pentiction, you’re going to love it! Honestly, this wine region is simply breathtaking and not something you want to miss!

Related Read: If you love wine, be sure to also visit nearby Kelowna, BC and consider also going on a Kelowna wine tour.

2. Take in the view at Munson Mountain 

Bailey at the top of Munson Mountain, Penticton
I love coming up here!

Munson Mountain is home to one of the most iconic Penticton attractions: the city sign that sits up on the hill overlooking the city. It’s honestly one of the best viewpoint in the area and it’s super easy to get to, as well.

This trail is an easy 0.6 km (0.37-mile) loop trail that will take you above the Penticton sign and deliver stunning views of the Okanagan. The walk is easy and suitable for both kids and pets. It took us about 5-10 minutes to climb to the top.  

There is a large parking lot at the base of the mountain, which is about a 5-minute drive from downtown Penticton. The path up the hill is wide and well-maintained. We came just before dusk, and it was absolutely stunning watching the sunset here.  

3. Enjoy a beach day  

Skaha Lake Beach in Penticton
Skaha Lake Beach in Penticton

Penticton, BC is the perfect place to enjoy a day at the beach! The city sits between two gorgeous lakes: Skaha Lake in the south and the massive Okanagan Lake in the north. As you can imagine, with two lakes right in town, there are plenty of different beaches to choose from in Penticton!

Okanagan Lake is the most famous lake in the area known for being home to the mythical Ogopogo, a lake monster similar to Scotland’s Loch Ness Monster. The Okanagan Lake is a long and skinny lake stretching 135km/84 miles long and varying between 4km/2.5 miles and 5km/3 miles in width. The lake stretches from Vernon to Penticton, connecting the many Okanagan cities. Despite its large size, the lake gets incredibly warm in the summer months between June and September.  

The main beach in Penticton on Okanagan Lake is called Okanagan Lake Beach. This beach is a long thin stretch of sand that sits across the street from many of the best restaurants and boutique stores in Penticton – it’s a vibrant place to have a drink with a lake view! This beach has lots of street parking along the front of it and has small shaded areas. The beach offers a nice sandy shoreline and you can even walk out into the water to a small slide where you can slide into the lake.  

A little ways east, just in front of Okanagan Lake Park, you will find Okanagan Lake Park Dog Beach. This beach offers a small gated area where your dog can run and splash into the water to cool off. Unfortunately, the shoreline here is a bit rockier but still a really great place to bring your dogs. 

If you’re planning a day touring the wineries in the Naramata region, there is a nice clothing-optional beach in the area called Three Mile Beach. This Okanagan nude beach is about a 10-minute drive from downtown Penticton located just off Naramata Road. Parking is limited and the beach is relatively popular despite its farther location.  

Okanagan Lake Beach, Penticton
Okanagan Lake Beach, Penticton

Another popular Naramata beach is the Naramata Centre Beach. This beach is less crowded than other beaches in the area and offers lots of parking, beautiful views, plenty of shaded areas, and a pier that is great for diving into the water.   

To the south of Penticton, you will find Skaha Lake, which is home to 2 main beaches. Sudbury Beach is the less crowded of the two with soft sand and a good-sized beach. This is a popular launch point for watersports and there is a watersports rental place on site. There is plenty of parking here and a few trees to provide some shade. 

Skaha Lake Beach is the more popular beach in the area, offering a ton of amenities including a boat launch. The water is quite shallow at this beach making it great for walking out long distances in the water. There is lots of free parking at this beach but unfortunately not a lot of shade. Bring an umbrella and set up on the soft white sandy beach and enjoy the small cafe stand here.   

Local Tip: In the warmer months, the city of Penticton sets up fire rings throughout a few of its beaches which can be used on a first come first serve basis. Two fire rings can be found at Okanagan Lake Beach, two can be found at Skaha Beach and one is at Sudbury Beach. You will need to bring your own firewood for burning.  

4. Check out the local breweries  

Bad Tattoo Brewing downtown Penticton beers
Bad Tattoo is amazing!
Pizza at Bad Tattoo Brewing downtown Penticton
Some of the breweries have excellent food.

If you’re more of a “beer lover” rather than a “wine lover,” then you’re in luck! Penticton’s craft brewery scene has stepped up its game in recent years and has become quite the hub for delicious Okanagan beer.

One of the best breweries in Penticton is Slackwater Brewing. This brewery has two patios, 12-beer rotating taps, and a tasty selection of snacks. There are a lot of vegetarian options here as well, but my favorite dish is the buffalo spinach dip!  

Cannery Brewing is also downtown and has a large rotating tap, my favorite being the Sunblink Berry Sour. They serve up some appie-style foods and charcuterie boards, but food prices are higher than other bars in the area, so I recommend sticking to beer here.

Tin Whistle Brewing Co. is a cool company focused on sustainability and delicious craft beer. Their tasting room is newly opened and does not serve food so pack a picnic and come feel good about the beer you’re drinking.  

Neighbourhood Brewing has a large rotating tap that even features two kinds of ciders for those who aren’t crazy about beer. They serve up delicious Mexi-style eats including the best tacos in Penticton.

A little ways from downtown you will find Abandoned Rail Brewing Company. They have a beautiful farm-style patio and a wide selection of beer. I’d recommend spending the $10.50 CAD ($7.50 USD) and getting a 4 beer flight to sample a few different kinds. They have a small menu of premade eats that you can get if you are hungry as well.  

While being one of the originals in the area, my favorite will always be Bad Tattoo Brewing downtown Penticton. They have a huge selection of beer with a lot of different sours to try. They have a funky vibe throughout and are one of those feel-good eclectic bars. The pizza menu is extensive and delicious! It’s so good, they even opened a second location in Kelowna (one of the best breweries in Kelowna, if you ask me.)  Unfortunately, they are now closed!

If you are planning to head out to Kelowna, this classic spirits tour will take you past some of the best breweries, cideries, and distilleries in the city. This 6-hour all-inclusive trip costs $565 CAD ($416 USD) and will pick you up from most Penticton hotels and includes lunch, water bottles, and shuttles to 6 of the top breweries, cideries, and distilleries.  

5. Shop local at the Farmers’ Markets  

Penticton Farmers Markets 
There are tons of local stalls here! Photo credit: Amykmitchell

Penticton’s Farmers’ Market has the idyllic “make it, bake it, grow it” philosophy that I love from a small town Farmers’ Markets.

In the summer months, the market is in full swing. Located in northern Penticton next to Gyro Park, the market is open on Saturdays between 8:30 am and 1 pm. The outdoor market is open between mid April to the end of October.  

The Farmers Market has quite the draw with about 50 vendors attracting about 8,000 visitors every Saturday. In typical Okanagan fashion, you can expect some local wineries, distilleries, and cideries to show up at the Penticton Farmers Market. You will also find lots of homemade crafts from local artisans, fresh produce from local farms, and deliciously prepared food to buy.  

If you are looking for a farmers market in winter months, Cherry Lane Mall often houses a small number of vendors during December. Although no winter 2022 dates have been confirmed, there is an indoor winter Farmers Market in Kelowna if you’re interested. This Farmers Market is located in Parkinson Recreation Centre starting in the beginning of November and runs Saturdays between 9 am and 1 pm.  

6. Play disc golf 

Daniel plays disc golf in Penticton, Canada
Dan loves disc golf!
Daniel throws a disc on the disc golf course in Penticton, Canada

Disc golf is one of those sports that grew in popularity quickly. In recent years, disc golf courses have popped up in many parks all across BC. With Penticton being both big on golf and known for its stunning weather, it makes sense that this is a top area to try disc golf.  

One of the most popular disc golf courses in Penticton is the Marina View Disc Golf Course right downtown Penticton. If you are new to disc golf, this is an excellent beginner course. You will be playing in large fields with stunning views of Okanagan Lake. This course is a short 9-hole course making it an ideal way to spend an afternoon.  

There is another Penticton disc golf course up the road near Naramata called 3 Blind Mice Disc Golf Course. This 18-hole course is a 12-minute drive from downtown Penticton and offers plenty of parking along Riddle Road. The course is well-shaded and offers stunning views of Penticton. This area is also popular amongst hikers and mountain bikers with some nice trails connecting throughout.  

This is the perfect course for those who love the outdoors. You will get a mix of easier and more challenging holes. The beginning of the course is quite uphill with lots of elevation changes. The views from the top are amazing and the course itself is well-marked and easy to navigate. 

7. Cycle the Kettle Valley Trail  

Kettle Valley Trail in Penticton
The trails are perfect for escaping the busy downtown area!

The Kettle Valley Trail is one of the most scenic biking or walking routes you can take in the Okanagan. This trail runs along a decommissioned railway that operated across southern British Columbia in the early 1900s. Now, it is a relatively flat trail that cuts through the mountains and delivers stunning views of the Okanagan valley. Cycling the Kettle Valley Trail is one of my favorite activities in Penticton.  

You can easily tour this trail on your own with many different starting points in Penticton. You can choose to start your tour close to downtown Penticton parking on Vancouver Place. This will give you a scenic ride along the Okanagan Lake and have you crossing a few trestle bridges as you ascend through the Naramata region.  

If you’d rather start outside of the city, I love parking just off Arawana Forestry Road. This spot starts you away from the city and delivers all those epic views in more of a solitary setting. The trail itself is well marked and really popular, so you can bet on company as you travel.  

If you don’t have a bike or would rather be guided on a tour, there are plenty available. This Spirited Brews Cruise tour combines my two favorite things: craft beer and the outdoors! The half-day tour costs $189 CAD ($140.43 USD) and will have you biking along the Kettle Valley Rail Trail as you visit craft breweries and craft distilleries. Lunch, bike rentals, and a shuttle to the top of the trailhead are included, but tasting fees are not, so be sure to come prepared.  

If biking is your focus, this 7-hour bicycle tour through Kettle Valley Railway from Myra Canyon to Penticton is one of the best experiences in the area. This tour leaves from Kelowna and takes you through the most scenic area of the rail trail: the Myra Canyon. This 74km/46 miles biking tour takes you over 19 trestle bridges and through 3 tunnels. You will have the opportunity to stop for lunch at Chute Lake before finishing your ride at one of the wineries in the Naramata bench.  

8. Float on the Penticton River Channel  

people of the Penticton River float
This river float is one of the best free things to do in Penticton. Photo credit: amykmitchell on Deposit Photos

This is definitely one of the best things to do in Penticton! I can’t think of a better summer day activity than floating down the 7 km (4.3 mile) Penticton River Channel.

With Coyote Cruises, you can rent a single, double, or even quad tube! Prices are $18-25 CAD per person depending on which size you choose. This also includes your shuttle ride back to the top. Not too bad for a half-day activity!

If you have your own tube, you can just pay for a shuttle ride from Coyote Cruises, making it an even cheaper activity. Or, if you have your own wheels and friend with theirs, you can skip the shuttle altogether and park one vehicle at the end and one at the start.

You can expect to be floating down the river for about 1-3.5 hours, depending on the water flow and if you want picked up at the midpoint or the end.

If you want to bring things that can’t get wet be sure to take a dry bag. Take some snacks and refreshments, and don’t forget your sunscreen!

Related Read: One of the best things to do in Invermere, BC is also an epic river float!

9. Visit Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park 

View from Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park, Penticton
View from Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park near Penticton

Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park is located 10 km/6.2 miles south of downtown Penticton. It was established in 2010 as a provincial park and is 489 hectares big. It’s open year-round, but the parking lot gate is closed from dusk to dawn and November to March. Be conscious of where you park because there are a lot of houses and narrow roads in the area that can be easily blocked. 

What makes the Skaha Bluffs stand out is the world-class rock climbing, amazing views, and abundance of wildlife.  

The Bluffs are considered to be some of the best rock climbing in Canada. There are over 1000 climbing routes on 66 rock faces that are worth climbing. If you’re looking to do some rock climbing, you will be able to from March to October, depending on when the snow starts and melts. The busiest times are generally long weekends which can lead to limited parking.  

This rock climbing Skaha Bluffs tour is a great option for newer rock climbers looking for some guidance in the area. For $390 CAD ($290 USD), you and up to 4 friends or family can spend 5 hours rock climbing at the Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park. They can accommodate more people, you just have to let them know. You’ll get everything you need to rock climb including a helmet, harness, ropes, shoes, and a professional guide. 

There are some great wineries in the area, too including my favorite, Painted Rock Estate Winery which is located close to the Skaha Bluffs parking lot. It has won many awards including a Decanter Wine of the Year in 2020.  

Please note that this area was badly burned due to wildfires in the area. There are some signs that indicate closed areas due to dangers stemming from these fires including falling burnt trees, ash pits, and unstable steep terrain. Please follow the signs!

10. Walk the waterfront  

Bailey walks downtown Penticton (2)
Such a lovely place, especially in the morning!

One of my favorite things to do in Penticton is to walk the waterfront stretch along Okanagan Lake. There is a paved pathway starting on the west side at the Penticton Rose Garden and stretching to the Penticton Yacht Club. There is parking all along the waterfront area making this area very accessible. 

The first stop is the Penticton Rose Garden, where you will see beautiful and colorful gardens. In the summer, there are often food trucks here including a delicious crepe truck. Right beside that, you will see one of the most famous Penticton attractions, the S.S. Sicamous Boat. This boat was first launched in 1914, so you can expect a good dose of history as you tour through this museum costing $10 CAD ($7 USD).  

From here, you will walk east towards Rotary Park along a wide paved pathway. On the one side, you will have views of the beautiful Okanagan Lake with the other side being lined with houses and restaurants. Rotary Park has a large pier you can walk out on, grassy areas that are great for picnics, and colorful gardens.  

While Rotary Park is a popular ending point for this walk, a little ways further beside the Penticton Art Gallery you will find a Japenese Garden along the water which is well worth a visit. If you have kids, they will love seeing all the koi fish that are in the large pond. This garden is small but absolutely stunning and very well maintained.  

11. Enjoy a few amazing meals  

Bailey at Lake Breeze winery in Penticton
Lake Breeze winery has a delicious restaurant on-site!
Meals at Lake Breeze winery in Penticton

Penticton is home to some amazing restaurants meaning you can count on eating well here. My favorite restaurant is Salty’s Beach House located right across the street from Okanagan Lake. This restaurant has nautical decor that is really fun to visit. The large menu features everything from huge seafood platters, steaks, burgers, pastas, bowls, and a large plant-based section.  

If you’re looking for dinner and a show, in downtown Penticton you will find The Dream Cafe. Here you will find the perfect mix of delicious food and great live music. We had such a great time at this eclectic restaurant. This place is a true gem of Penticton, the staff are friendly, the food is tasty, and the atmosphere is very laid back and comfortable.  

If you’re feeling like some Greek food, Theo’s Restaurant is where you’re going to want to go in Penticton. Their restaurant has an upscale barn feel with an amazing atrium that makes you feel like you’re in Greece. This restaurant is one of the mainstays in Penticton, having been opened in 1976! 

Lots of wineries in Penticton also have delicious upscale restaurants that often have stunning views. Lake Breeze winery is one of our favorite winery restaurants and it’s only 15 minutes drive from downtown. This winery in Naramata definitely lives up to its name being steps from Okanagan Lake, with a big outdoor patio and great food. 

12. Hit the slopes 

Apex Mountain Resort Penticton
Photo credit: Apex Mountain Resort Penticton

If you like skiing and snowboarding, you’ll be pleasantly surprised with this area of British Columbia. 

Apex Mountain is one of the top ski and snowboard hills in BC. The mountain is located 35km/22 miles southeast of downtown Penticton. You can expect about an hour’s drive to the mountain from Penticton, depending on winter road conditions. The ride up to the mountain is absolutely stunning as you weave through the pristine beauty of BC’s forests. 

The ski hills at Apex open from 9 am to 3:30 pm and night skiing takes over from 4 pm to 9 pm. Apex’s ski season usually starts later than other ski and snowboard mountains in BC. You can expect the mountain to be open between December and mid-late March.  

Lift tickets for Apex Ski Resort vary depending on age and amount of days. A 1-day adult Apex lift ticket (19-64 years old) will cost $105 CAD ($76 USD), a teen lift ticket (13-18 years old) is $87 CAD ($63 USD), and a junior (8-12 years old) is $65 CAD ($47 USD). There are ways you can get discounted Apex lift tickets on their website

Apex Ski Resort also offers night skiing and tubing from 4 to 9 PM and costs $25 CAD ($18 USD) each. 

There is also a tube park that is great for children and adults alike. It has two runs with a magic carpet to get you back to the top, which means you don’t have to carry your tube back up the hill. For 2 hours at the Tube Park, the cost is $25 CAD ($18 USD) for adults with junior tickets (8-12 years old) costing $17 CAD ($12 USD). If you’re looking for more than 2 hours you can add another hour for $5 CAD ($4 USD). 

Related Read: Skiing is also one of the best things to do in Kelowna in winter.

13. Get out on the water 

Speed boating on Lake Okanagan
Speed boating on Lake Okanagan!

Penticton sees the majority of its tourism in the summer months thanks to its amazing location situated between the beautiful Okanagan Lake and Skaha Lake. Both of these lakes are warm and deliver clean sandy beaches. This is a really popular area to take up fun watersports activities like paddle boarding and kayaking. The large size of these lakes make it fun to explore. 

There is a non-motorized watersport rental place on Sudbury Beach on Skaha Lake. Glow SUP Adventures and Beach Rentals is one of the best places to rent watersports and get out on the water.  

If you’re looking for something a little faster-paced, then consider a motorized option. One of the most exhilarating activities you can do in Penticton is ride around on a jet ski or speed boat. If this sounds like something you’re interested in, Pier Watersports is the place to go. 

14. Canada’s highest freestyle zipline  

girl on the zipline at Zipzone in the Okanagan Valley
Woohoo! Photo Credit: Zipzone

Experience adventure at Canada’s highest freestyle zipline! Ziplining is easily one of the most thrilling activities in the Penticton area.

You will have the opportunity to fly 381 feet/116 meters over the stunning Deep Creek Canyon in Peachland. I can’t think of a better way to scope out the area, can you?

The great thing is, Zipzone is more than just ziplines, they also offer a DynaClimb climbing wall, a ninja course, and a game area. The cool thing about the DynaClimb is it’s a shifting wall that moves as you climb it — it literally shifts with your weight!

For the zipline tours, you can do 2, 4, or 6 lines depending on your budget and the amount of time you have. General admission starts at $79 CAD.

Be sure to book your reservations in advance because they do book up!

15. Go hiking  

Kettle Valley Rail Trail in Penticton
Kettle Valley Rail Trail in Penticton

Some of the best hiking in BC is located in the Penticton area.

If you’re looking for a challenging point-to-point hike, the Kettle Valley Trail will be the one for you. This is a nearly 40km/25 mile hike from Penticton to Kelowna sits along one of the nicest Forest Service Roads in the area. There is Chute Lake Lodge that has cabins and yurts that you can rent (along with a beautiful lake) to break up the approximately 12-hour hike. You’ll cross old trestle bridges that used to carry trains that transported goods throughout the area. 

Due to being a former railroad, the grade in this walk is fairly gradual. This makes this trail great for biking in the summer months. If you find yourself visiting in winter, try cross-country skiing on this Penticton hiking trail. 

Another moderately difficult hike in Penticton is Mount Campbell via Tower Road. This is a 5.4km/3.3 mile out and back hike that gains 745ft/227 meters. It’s located just northwest of downtown Penticton making it have some great views. 

If you’re wanting a guided hiking tour, this is a great place to do it. There are many outstanding hiking trails in the area for all skill levels. This guided backcountry experience in the South Okanagan will take you through the mountains in the Summerland area (around 18km/11 mile north of Penticton). We like this guided hike because of the attention to detail. It’s intentionally kept to under 5 people so that there’s a greater chance of wildlife sightings and tailored to your goals and skill level. 

16. Day trip to Osoyoos 

View over Osoyoos, Canada
Osoyoos is just as beautiful!

Penticton to Osoyoos is a drive you will enjoy. You’ll pass by Skaha Lake, Vaseux Lake, and many orchards and vineyards on this hour-long route south on Highway 97. You’ll end up in Osoyoos, which sits on the west side of Osoyoos Lake – one of the most popular summer destinations in BC and what makes Osoyoos so popular with tourists. 

In the summer months, Osoyoos Lake comes alive with boaters, paddleboarders, kayakers, and swimmers. The water becomes warm early in the summer and stays that way until almost October. 

If you’re more of a feet-on-land type of person, there are many other activities in Osoyoos. This area is an arid desert that is perfect for cultivating grapes to use for wine. There are so many vineyards and wineries in the area that it’s hard to pick our favorite. 

Nk’Mip Cellars is the first Indigenous-owned winery in North America that features amazing tasting, award-winning wine. Burrowing Owl Estate Winery is one of the oldest in the area opening in 1993. Winery tours are $5 CAD ($3.63 USD) and are donated to the Burrowing Owl Conservation Society which protects this type of owl. We liked the Mirage Merlot 2017 vintage. 

Osoyoos sits in the Okanagan Valley, which is home to some world-famous golf courses (there are around 30 golf courses in the area). When you combine this with over 100km/62 miles of lakes you have one of the most fun areas in BC, if not Canada. 

One of these lakes is the Spotted Lake which is created by circle mineral deposits that create greenish yellow spots in this lake. This lake is located only 10 minutes northwest of downtown Osoyoos (9km/5.6 miles). 

17. Check out the adventure parks  

bumper boats at Loco Landing Adventure Park in Penticton, the Okanagan Valley
Ready for some bumper boats? Photo Credit: Loco Landing Adventure Park

For those with kids, or are like me and just kids at heart, Penticton has a few adventure parks which make summers that much more enjoyable.

Splash BC Water Park is a large inflatable obstacle course that sits on the west side of Okanagan Lake. The inflatable park opens when the weather turns warm in late spring. Admission is $30 CAD ($22 USD) and the park is open to everyone 5+ with kids 5-8 requiring an adult chaperone to accompany them.  

Penticton is also home to Loco Landing Adventure Park, a fun family-friendly amusement park geared towards younger kids. Located downtown a block from Okanagan Lake, this adventure park has it all. This park is packed full of things to do like go-carts, bumper boats, a mini golf course, giant bouncy castles, a climbing wall, a ropes course, and more. You can choose to pay by activity or do a value pack of all the different activities for a discounted price.  

18. Wander around downtown Penticton 

Bailey walks downtown Penticton
The downtown area is so beautiful!
An ice cream from Tickleberry’s in Penticton downtown
Tickleberry’s is so good!

Downtown Penticton is a unique experience. We suggest parking at Okanagan Lake Beach which is one of the top beaches in Canada. Walking east along Lakeshore Drive until Main Street and then strolling south on Main Street will be the best way to explore downtown Penticton.  

There are lots of little boutique shops that are usually open until 5 pm, so be sure to start your trip to downtown Penticton early, especially in the off-season between October and April. The street art is quite impressive and brings life to downtown. 

We liked Meeples and Milkshakes Board Game Cafe. They’re open from 3 pm to 9 pm every day (11 PM on Fridays and Saturdays). There are over 500 games that you have unlimited access to for only $7 CAD ($5 USD) and $4 CAD ($3 USD) for kids. 

If you’re in the mood for some ice cream, you’ll want to stop at Tickleberry’s downtown Penticton. They keep stock of 72 different flavors and a variety of different kinds and sizes of cones. Originally from the Yukon, the owners moved to the area and opened Tickleberry’s in 1990. 

19. Bird Watching  

California Qual in Penticton on a bird watching tour
California Qual in Penticton on a bird watching tour

Penticton is home to a wide range of bird species making this a hot spot for birders. In this region, you will find over 250 different species of birds that spend summers in this region. While you can go on your own to different areas to spot some birds, I highly recommend booking a guided tour where you will be led to the areas the birds frequent. 

If you’re an avid bird watcher, this guided 6-hour bird watching tour through the South Okanagan is a great way to spend your day. The tour costs $195 CAD ($145 USD) per group of up to 3 people. The tour meets at the S.S. Sicamous Boat downtown Penticton bright and early at 6 am. Make sure you bring your own binoculars as you explore the different birds that call this area home.   

If you’d like a shorter experience, this 2-hour bird watching tour is a great option. This is another private group tour that costs $100 CAD ($74 USD) for groups of up to 3 people. Be sure to bring your camera and binoculars along as you see the many different species of birds that frequent the area.  

For those who are interested, the nearby town of Summerland is home to Adams Bird Sanctuary. While this is typically a great area to spot some birds, the area is often overrun by bald eagles who chase away the smaller birds that frequent the area.  

20. Visit Summerland  

Cider at Summerland Heritage Cider Company
Cider is the perfect summer drink in Summerland!
Playing games at Summerland Heritage Cider Company
Oh, and don’t forget to play the games!

Summerland is a small town located right beside Penticton, less than 20 minutes drive up the Okanagan Lake from Penticton. For such a small town, Summerland packs a punch with a fair amount of things to do. Summerland is located between Penticton and Kelowna and is tucked into the hillside. 

If you’re traveling with kids, a stop at the Kettle Valley Steam Railway can be really fun. Here you can take a ride on one of Canada’s only remaining steam trains. Keeping up with local events, the train transforms into a Sorcery Express over Halloween and lights up as a Christmas Express in December. For a true adventure, they also have a Great Train Robbery experience where cowboys on horseback halt the train and “rob” the passengers for charity donations.  

If you’re looking to spend the day at the beach, you will be happy to know Summerland’s lakeside location gives you quite a few options. My favorite beach is Peach Orchard Beach Park, where you will find a great kid’s waterpark, a big dog park, and nice trails. The sandy beach has a nice pier that you can jump off and the beach has a good amount of shade.

Gordon Beggs Rotary Beach is another good option if you are looking for a sandy beach without the crowds but is considerably smaller.  

I highly recommend stopping at Summerland Heritage Cider Company. Not far off the highway, this cidery serves delicious cider and slushes. They have a dog-friendly patio which we love, and they offer flights of 4 2oz ciders or half flights serving up 1oz tasters of 8 different ciders.  

If you’re more interested in vineyards, Summerland is home to quite a few Okanagan wineries. One of the most popular wineries in Summerland is Sumac Ridge Estate Winery. Perched on a hill, this winery is open year round delivering stunning views with affordable $5 CAD ($3.63 USD) tastings.  

Dirty Laundry Vineyard is one of my favorites in the area. They have a large patio area that serves up delicious food – seriously try their pizzas! This winery is family-friendly and serves craft beer as well as delicious wine from the vineyard. If you come at the right time, you may even see the steam engine train pass by as your here.  

21. Enjoy the local cafes  

Daniel with a coffee at wayne and freda penticton
Wayne and Freda is our favorite cafe in Penticton!
A meal at wayne and freda Penticton
Breakfast from Wayne and Freda

If you love coffee and a good brunch stop, you will be happy to know that Penticton has some of the best cafes I’ve been to. While they have all the traditional cafes you’d expect like Starbucks, Blenz, and the Canadian classic: Tim Hortons, what they do really well is a local family-owned cafes.  

My favorite is Wayne and Freda, which has a huge comfortable patio to enjoy your morning coffee. In addition to the typical coffees and teas, they serve delicious smoothies, sandwiches, and bowls. The food is fairly priced and health-focused, I’m still dreaming about their delicious breakfast sandwiches and salmon toast!  

Another great option is The Prague Cafe which has a beautiful beachfront location. This Czech-style cafe has cozy laid back vibes and serves up unique homemade European cuisine and organic coffees. I highly recommend coming on weekends as they offer a unique weekend special that is changed weekly and is everything from beef goulash to schnitzels.  

22. Golf!  

Penticton Golf & Country Club
Photo credit: Penticton Golf & Country Club

The entire Okanagan Valley has made a name for itself as being great for two things: wine and golf. With some of the longest summers in Canada, Penticton is a great place to enjoy a sunny day on the golf course. The Okanagan is home to some of the best championship-level golf courses in the country.  

If you are new to golfing and want to practice your game, Doc’s Golf Centre is a great pitch and putt course right in town. There is also a driving range on site where you can practice your swing. Pine Hills Golf Club is another great golf course with stunning views of Okanagan Lake and an affordable price tag. The course is quite short but has quite a few hills and trees making it an interesting course. 

Penticton Golf & Country Club is one of the most popular golf courses in the area. Right in the middle of the city, the views here are stunning as you are surrounded by the beautiful Okanagan mountains. The course is well maintained and offers a good range of challenging sections. I highly recommend you come early and start your day at their restaurant, The Blue Heron, which serves up delicious eggs benny at a reasonable price.  

Skaha Meadows Golf Course, located just off Skaha Lake, is a great 9-hole golf course located next to the Penticton Airport. The course is ideal for beginners and those newer to golfing. The golf course offers tee times between 8 am and 4:30 pm daily and is affordably priced.  

Where to Stay in Penticton, BC

the double room at Ascend Hotel Penticton with Daniel on the bed
We stayed at Ascend Hotel Penticton the last time we were in town.

Penticton is a city with a ton of hotels to choose from, which is great because they really are needed in the peak summer season. Most of the hotels have pools, and some even have cooking facilities!

If you’re visiting Penticton and on a limited budget, I hate to break it you, but there aren’t many cheap options. There are no hostels in the city and most of the cheapest hotels have terrible reviews. Your best choice is Sahara Courtryard Inn, where rooms go for as low as $185 CAD in peak season. The hotel features a large outdoor pool with plenty of seating. All rooms also have air condition (an essential in Penticton in the summer!)

If you don’t mind spending a little more then we recommend Ascend Hotel Collection. This is where we stayed the last time when we were in Penticton and really enjoyed our stay. The rooms looked they were recently renovated with modern finishes and we loved the large indoor pool and hot tub (perfect for when the weather isn’t ideal.) They also have pet-friendly rooms! Rooms cost about $250 CAD per night during the peak summer season.

For those of you who want a luxury stay, you can’t go wrong with Fairfield by Marriott Inn & Suites Penticton. It is one of the newest hotels in the city and features all of the amenities you could ever want including an indoor swimming pool, hot tub, and gym. They also have rooms that sleep up to four people as well as your pet! Expect to pay over $330 CAd per night during the summer.

Thanks for reading! 

Bailey and Daniel take a selfie in Penticton, Canada
Thanks for reading!

Penticton, BC is one of the gems of the Okanagan valley. Surrounded by lakes and mountains, there is no shortage of things to do in Penticton. Whether you want to spend your day sipping wine, lazing on one of the many white sandy beaches, or visiting some of the historic Penticton attractions, this city has it all. My favorite thing about Penticton is the amazing blue sky weather, no matter when you visit you’re almost guaranteed nice weather.  

If you enjoyed this blog, be sure to check out our other blogs about the Okanagan Valley as well as British Columbia. Some related blogs you might enjoy include:

The BEST Restaurants in Vernon

The BEST Things to do in Vancouver

MUST-Visit Places in Alberta

15 Things to KNOW About the Mount Fitz Roy Hike (Laguna de los Tres)
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