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34 Things to do in the Okanagan Valley, British Columbia

34 Things to do in the Okanagan Valley, British Columbia

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Nestled between the Columbia and Cascade mountain ranges, the beautiful Okanagan Valley is one of our favorite regions in British Columbia, and we love visiting no matter the time of year!

In the summertime, you can enjoy amazing hikes, try different watersports, and kick back at the freshwater beaches. While in the winter, the Okanagan Valley is home to some pretty epic ski slopes.

Oh, and did we mention the region is one of the largest producers of fruit and wine in Canada? This means you can also expect plenty of great fruit orchards and vineyards… get ready to go wine tasting in Kelowna!

From Salmon Arm to Osoyoos, every area in the Okanagan Valley is different from the last, and in this blog, we wanted to capture the very best things to do throughout the entire valley, hence the rather long list!

So without further ado, here are 34 fun things to do in the Okanagan Valley, British Columbia!

Don’t have time to read the full article? Here are five of our must-do activities here in the Okanagan Valley:

  1. Enjoy the very best of Kelowna’s wine scene on this half-day wine tour
  2. Rent out an e-bike and explore at your own pace
  3. Unleash your inner foodie on this walking food experience in Kelowna
  4. Relax at the gorgeous Ellison Provincial Park
  5. Hit the slopes at Big White and Silver Star

34 Things to do in the Okanagan Valley

1. Go vineyard and winery hopping

Tasing wines at Rollingdale Winery Inc
Wine tasting is easily one of the best things to do in Okanagan Valley!

As one of the most famous regions for producing wine in BC, it’s no surprise that the Okanagan Valley is full to the brim with first-class wineries and vineyards. With that said, Kelowna might just be our go-to home base when I’m thinking about visiting local wineries – it’s full of fantastic hotels and is close to many local wineries, making it the perfect launchpad to explore all things wine-related!

Some of our favorite wineries in Kelowna include Ancient Hill Estate (like a little slice of Italy!), as well as The View and CedarCreek (this one has the best views!). You really can’t go wrong picking any one of these, but each is a little different from the other – you really never get bored exploring all the amazing spots here.

Of course, if you’re a fellow wine-lover, then I’m sure you could also spend weeks exploring all the best options available, but sadly, we don’t always have the luxury of having so much time. That’s why I love going on hand-crafted wine tours in Kelowna, as the itinerary is carefully selected to make the most of your time. Plus, you don’t have to worry about arranging transport, arguably the best bit!

If you’re new to the wine scene here in Kelowna, then I highly recommend this half-day wine tour, which visits four vineyards, with tastings included. Lasting around 4 hours, it’s not too much to be overwhelming, but you enjoy the sights (and most importantly, the taste!) of each winery, quickly discovering just why Kelowna (and the Okanagan Valley) is so highly rated in the wine scene.

Tickets for this tour cost $179 CAD per person, and include pickup from Kelowna and West Kelowna hotels – now that’s convenient. You can check availability and get your flavor-packed tour booked online here.

On the other hand, if you’ve got a little more time on your hands and want to take things to the next level, then this full-day wine tour visits no less than five wineries. Trust me, you’ll be an expert by the end of the day, and it’s a good thing that round-trip transport from Kelowna is included too.

We love that each winery is selected to be different from the last, and we’re super jealous that you’ll get to visit Mt. Boucherie Estate! Tickets for this super-special experience are only slightly pricier than the previous experience, too, costing just $199 CAD per person. You can book this experience with free 24-hour cancellation online here.

2. Hop on a bike and explore

These bikes are amazing! Photo Credit: Lakeside Eco-Sports

One of our favorite summertime activities is getting out and exploring on two wheels, and you couldn’t ask for a better place to cycle than the Okanagan Valley when the sun is shining! Whether you’re traveling as a family, as a couple, or solo, this is an activity we can all get behind.

With that said, Kelowna is surrounded by hills, so if you’d like to head outside of town for an adventure, then hiring out an e-bike can really help. They really do take off the edge and make the entire ride that much more enjoyable. We highly recommend this e-bike rental service, which includes options for 2-hour, all the way up to 8-hour rentals. This way, you’re free to work out your itinerary and hit those hills!

You can also pair a bike ride with a wine tour by joining an experience like this half-day, self-guided Kelowna wine tour. I mean, what could be more fun than enjoying the sights of three beautiful wineries and enjoying a fantastic lunch – oh, and did we mention that this is a private tour?!

With tickets costing just $150 CAD, we think this tour is an absolute steal, and we love that you can follow it completely at your own pace. You can check availability and book your spot online here.

3. Drink ALL the craft beer

two women enjoying beers at the outdoor patio at Red Bird Brewing in Kelowna, BC
Bailey and her sister enjoying beers at one of their favorite breweries in Kelowna!

Kelowna isn’t just for wine lovers (although there are plenty of amazing wineries in Kelowna too). In fact, these days Kelowna has just as much to offer craft beer connoisseurs.

New craft breweries are popping up all over Kelowna, and the newfound craft beer scene has since started the annual Okanagan Craft Beer Festival each May in Kelowna.

There are literally so many different breweries to visit in Kelowna, but some of our personal favorites include:

  • BNA Brewing – This brewery is located in a historic building with decor that will blow you away! They have lots of rotating taps and also serve food. Oh ya, they also have a bowling alley so you can have beers and bowl!
  • Barn Owl Brewing Co – A fairly new brewery in Kelowna, Barn Owl Brewing is set in a – you guessed it – barn! They do not have their own kitchen so they only have baked goods and flatbreads or they encourage you to bring your own food, so a great place for a summer picnic complete with craft beer.
  • Kelowna Brewing Company – If you’re going to visit just one brewery in Kelowna, make it Kelowna Brewing Company. Located in downtown Kelowna, this huge brewery also doubles as a pub and restaurant offering a huge variety of craft beers from around the area, and delicious food too!

4. Enjoy the local cuisine on a food tour

Bailey enjoys a drink on our Kelowna food tour in British Columbia
Bailey tasting a frozen lemonade with her meal on our Kelowna food tour!

The Okanagan Valley is all about fresh produce, and along with that comes all the treats that are made with it! That being said, it’s no surprise a food tour is one of the best things to do in Kelowna. We LOVE food tours and have done them all over the world, including a food tour in Vancouver recently.

We went on this downtown Kelowna walking food tour, which included 7 stops at different restaurants around the city. We tried food and drinks from some of the best restaurants in town, and the portions were very generous at each place. It’s certainly not a tour you’re going to leave hungry from!

There’s also much to learn about the culture of the Okanagan and throughout the day your guide will show you many cool gardens, statues, and gardens around town.

This tour is with A Taste of Kelowna Food Tours and I couldn’t recommend this experience enough! We had a fantastic time on our tour and at only $99 CAD per person for the tour, it’s seriously good value.

The easiest way to reserve your date and time slot is to book online in advance.

5. Experience Flyboarding!

Flyboarding in kelowna
I was surprised by how high you go!

Did you know that you can actually fly over Okanagan Lake while in Kelowna? Well, you can on this water-propelled Flyboard experience! As you can see from the photo above, this super unique activity in Kelowna will have you feeling as though you’re flying high above the water, all by yourself.

It’s a super unique way to enjoy the views and have plenty of laughs along the way. Don’t be mistaken though, these flyboards go fast! You can even reach speeds of up to 55 kmh (34 mph) and beginners can expect to reach a height of around 1.5-3.7 meters (5-12 feet).

This makes for a thrilling ride, and it’s a great alternative to a jet ski, plus, it’s something that you’ve probably never done before! Flyboarding is also much easier than it looks and with some simple instructions, most people the hang of it within a few minutes – anybody can do it.

Tickets for this experience cost $127 CAD for a 30-minute session that includes all safety gear as well as instructions on how to control the board. Make sure to book online in advance though, since there are only limited boards available!

6. Paddle on Okanagan Lake

Okanagan Lake with mountains in the back and a peninsula of homes.
Simply stunning!

Looking for an easygoing summertime activity? Why not head over to Sun-Oka Beach Provincial Park and rent something fun to take out on the water!? Okanagan Beach Rentals have kayaks, canoes, stand-up paddleboards, pedal boats, and water trikes to choose from and trust us, you’ve got plenty of space to explore here.

This is an activity in Summerland that really is great for all ages and skill levels. Even if you don’t want to do a rental, you can enjoy sunbathing, floating, or picnicking at the beach. They even have a playground and beach volleyball court.

Okanagan Beach Rentals are open from May 18th through to September 15th, however, their opening hours do vary slightly throughout this period. Rentals start at around $25 CAD an hour, with 2-hour rates slightly discounted.

Where to Stay in Summerland

If you decide on staying in Summerland there are only a handful of hotels to choose from. If you’re on a budget, Rosedale Motel is going to be your best bet. It’s located right in the middle of Summerland, and just a 5-minute walk from the town center.

Aside from a great location, Rosedale Motel also provides free WiFi, a seasonal outdoor pool, and a fridge and coffee maker in every room. Rooms start at around $134 CAD per night and can be booked online here.

If you have a larger budget, check out Summerland Waterfront Resort & Spa. It’s located on a secluded stretch of Okanagan Lake and offers a private beach. They have a seasonal outdoor pool and a year-round hot tub. Each suite has a fully equipped kitchen, fireplace, and soaker tub.

It’s also in a great location, minutes from wineries, golf courses, or skiing. If possible, be flexible with your dates if you want to book here and save. Rates start from $214 CAD per night, and you can check out the rates for your dates here.

7. Go boating

Hanging out on Okanagan Lake on our pontoon tour
Hanging out on Okanagan Lake on our pontoon tour

When summer rolls around, one of the best things to do is grab your friends and family and spend a day out on the lake! It’s something we’ve always loved doing – there’s just something about boats and good vibes. So, during our last visit to the Okanagan Valley, we made sure to head out to Okanagan Lake for some fun in the sun.

We had an amazing time lounging around on the lake on this 2-hour private lake cruise, enjoying the packed lunches we brought, and taking plunges into the refreshing water. You can even see places like Kelowna, West Kelowna, Peachland, and Snake Island from a whole new perspective!

This is a great activity for those wanting to relax and enjoy the natural views during their holiday in the Okanagan Valley, and Brad was the friendliest captain we could have hoped for! As it’s a private tour, you won’t have to worry about others joining you and can be totally free to relax.

You can book your private boat rental here in advance for $175 CAD per person.

If you’re traveling in a larger group, or just fancy some more time out on the water, then this 6-hour cruise is for you! You can play games, sunbathe, or just sit and chat as the hours while on by – such a fun large group activity aboard this 22-foot (6.7-meter) pontoon boat.

This experience is priced at $1,770 CAD for 6 hours and up to 11 people, so the more people you have joining you, the cheaper per person it will work out! It’s ideal if you’re celebrating a special occasion with friends and family, and works out to $161 CAD per person with a full group. You can book your 6-hour cruise online here.

Why We Book Tours with Viator

Viator is a trusted online booking system for tours around the world! We almost always book our tours using Viator for a couple of reasons:

  • Free cancellation on most tours – Most of the tours on Viator allow you to cancel and get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance. This is handy in case plans change, or if booking an outdoor activity, the weather forecast is looking grim.
  • Reserve now and pay later – You can secure your spot on some of the most popular tours well in advance and not pay until closer to the day of the tour.
  • Lowest price guarantee – If you happen to find the same tour at a lower price elsewhere, Viator will refund you the price difference.
  • Pay in your chosen currency – Avoid costly international transaction fees by choosing to pay in your home currency.
  • Peace of mind – When booking with tour operators you find in person on the street or in small booking offices, you are often promised one thing and given another. This online platform holds tour operators accountable with a written description of inclusions as well as the opportunity for customers to leave reviews.

Check out the Viator website here! Or, for more info, read our detailed review about Viator here.

8. Spoil yourself at Sparkling Hill Resort & Spa

view of Sparkling Hill Resort & Spa from Above
This place is stunning! Photo Credit: Sparkling Hill Resort & Spa

If you’re looking for a real treat-yourself experience in the Okanagan, then you’ve got to head to Sparkling Hill Resort! You can either plan to visit for the day and head to the spa, or really splurge and spend a night.

The resort itself is luxurious and truly sparkling – it has over 3.5 million Swarovski crystals integrated into the resort’s architecture and design! It’s outfitted with the best amenities, including an outdoor infinity pool, an indoor pool, the KurSpa, a serenity room, complimentary breakfast, and much more.

three girls inside Sparkling Hills  Resort & Spa
Bailey’s sister, her mom, and Bailey at Sparkling Hills Resort & Spa a few years ago.

The views over the lake from anywhere in the resort are absolutely stunning. Believe me, I’ve been before. Although it was a few years ago (check out those baby cheeks in the photo above), I remember how luxurious the building felt and the lake views from every window.

If you choose to go for a spa day, KurSpa has a lot to offer – over 100 services to be exact! You can choose from a variety of massages like a Lavender Fields Massage or Hot Stone Massage, or get a facial, mud bath, or manicure. Prices begin at $99 CAD and vary depending on your treatment, but they are worth a splurge for this luxurious experience!

But if you can afford the splurge, definitely treat yourself to a night or two here. Especially for couples, spending the night is easily one of the most romantic things to do in Okanagan Valley – you won’t regret it! You can expect to pay around $407 CAD per night for a king-size room with a mountain view.

9. Walk to Margaret Falls in Harold’s Provincial Park

Margaret Falls in Harold’s Provincial Park
Margaret Falls in Harold’s Provincial Park

Margaret Falls is an absolutely stunning waterfall, accessible by a variety of trails in Harold’s Provincial Park. The falls are located about 15 km (9.3 miles) west of Salmon Arm along Highway 1, and you’ll find a day-use parking lot right in the park.

There are multiple trails to choose from, ranging from 0.5-3 km (0.3-1.8 miles), and can take between 0.5-1.5 hours to complete. Make sure to check out the trail map in the park before getting started.

If you head through the lower trails, which are appropriate for all ages and are wheelchair accessible, you’ll start along Shuswap Lake. You’ll then walk over bridges and through the gorgeous old-growth forest until you get to the waterfall. It’s truly a magical experience!

The park is free to visit, but there is a donation box if you want to provide a little support to the conservation of the area.

10. Relax at Canoe Beach

Relaxing at Canoe Beach, Salmon Arm, BC
On a hot summer’s day, Canoe Beach is the place to go!

Nothing quite beats a relaxing day at the beach! Canoe Beach is located just outside of Salmon Arm’s town center and has everything you could possibly need for a fun and relaxing day by the water. We think it’s easily one of the best beach areas in the Okanagan Valley.

There is a large grassy area, a sandy beach, and even several picnic tables. There’s even a concession stand, volleyball court, and playground. Canoe Beach has something for the whole family!

Naturally, it’s also a great place to go for a swim! The water is clear and there is a roped-off area and pontoon to swim out to. Salmon Arm enjoys warm and sunny weather in the summer months, so definitely get in there and enjoy it while the sun is shining.

11. Visit the most northern winery in BC – Larch Hills

Vineyard at Larch Hills in Salmon Arm, BC
The wine here is so good!

You absolutely cannot visit this region of BC without trying out some local wines. Larch Hills was established in 1997 as a family business and is considered a “cool climate” vineyard, because of its location as the most northern winery in BC.

Larch Hills offers some of the most delicious wines, and you can try them out during a free cellar-door tasting (yes, you read that right, completely free!). Once you’ve learned a little about the wine, how it’s made, and what your favorite is, you can go to the tasting room, enjoy a glass, and take in the stunning views from their property.

If you are inclined to purchase a bottle or two, the prices here are very reasonable, with most costing around $18 CAD. We both had a glass of their famous malbec and enjoyed it to the last sip.

Overall, this is an Okanagan hidden gem you need to make the time to stop at, you won’t regret it!

12. Walk the largest wooden wharf in North America

Salmon Arm Wharf
The wharf is huge!

Who would’ve guessed visiting Salmon Arm meant getting to check out a record-setting wharf? Being the longest wooden wharf in North America, this 440 ft (134 m) structure has a pretty interesting history, dating all the way back to 1907! It remains one of the main community hubs in Salmon Arm and one of the top attractions in the Okanagan Valley.

You can enjoy walking on the wharf year-round, taking in the scenery of Shuswap Lake. You’ll often find people fishing or feeding ducks off the wharf too. If you’re around during the summer, I highly recommend going and enjoying some live music and a meal from the food trucks.

If you get the chance, keep your eye out for a desert stand at the end of the pier selling sorbet – we both tried the raspberry flavor, and it was sooo good!

The wharf has a fun, community feel to it, so make sure to get in on the action.

13. Go golfing!

Salmon Arm Golf Club
If you love golf you’ll love Salmon Arm! Photo credit: Salmon Arm Golf Club

Golfing is one of the best activities in BC to get you outside and enjoy nature while having a social activity to participate in! When you’re in Salmon Arm in the Okanagan Valley, you have to try the Shuswap National Golf Course.

It’s beautifully designed with open fields, forested areas, rocks and water features, and wetlands. The course is an impressive 4 miles (6.5 km) long and has won a few awards as a top-rated 18-hole championship golf course!

The rates to golf range between $48 to $79 CAD depending on the time of the day, but do not include a golf cart. The rates with a golf cart will cost between $68 to $99 CAD, again depending on the time. There are also junior and senior rate discounts.

After a day on the course, head to The National Kitchen & Patio, their beautiful on-site restaurant that provides excellent dining options inside a timber-frame clubhouse.

Another popular course is the Salmon Arm Golf Club, another championship course. It’s another wonderful 18-hole course that’s popular with locals and is priced between $44 to $79 CAD based on the time. For those with less experience, their Heritage Course is a relaxing 9 holes that only costs $20 CAD per person. Power carts, pull cars, clubs, and bucket rentals are available at an additional charge.

Where to Stay in Salmon Arm

If you plan on doing any of the last five activities, it may be the most convenient for you to stay in Salmon Arm. Salmon Arm is one of the smaller towns in the Okanagan Valley, so there aren’t a ton of hotel options, however, the options they do have are pretty solid.

For budget travelers, you can’t beat the SureStay Plus Hotel. Located right on the lake on the outskirts of town, this is the cheapest hotel in Salmon Arm, but the reviews definitely don’t reflect that! The property has a pool, free parking, and a continental breakfast is included.

For travelers after a luxury stay, The Inn at the Ninth Hole Bed & Breakfast is one of the best options available. The rooms here are beautiful and surprisingly cheap too! Of course, this place includes an exceptional breakfast and is in a stunning area just outside of Salmon Arm.

14. Spend the Day at Ellison Provincial Park

Daniel paddle boarding at Ellison Provincial Park, Vernon
Ellison Provincial Park, Vernon is the best place to swim on Okanagan Lake!

The locals are going to hate me for this, but one of the best-kept secrets in Vernon is Ellison Provincial Park. This is hands down one of the best things to do in the Okanagan Valley!

Ellison Provincial Park is located on Okanagan Lake and from Vernon, you can get to the park in under 20 minutes. The park itself is relatively small, however with its lakeside location, a large number of tables and fire pits, plus the fact it remains much less crowded than other beaches in the area, a visit is a must-do while in Vernon!

Some of the best things to do at Ellison Provincial Park include hiking some of the short trails nearby, just relaxing at the beach, having a wood-fired BBQ, and paddleboarding.

There is also a campground in the park too for those who want to spend the night in this little slice of paradise! These sites operate between late March to mid-October, so if you fancy getting away from the crowds and relaxing in nature, I say go for it!

Speaking of crowds, if you want to visit the park at its quietest, be sure to arrive before lunchtime. I personally went on a busy long weekend and enjoyed Ellison for around 2 hours with almost no people from 10 am until 12 pm!

15. Visit Silver Star Mountain Resort

two snowboarders at SilverStar Mountain Resort near Vernon, BC
Going snowboarding at SilverStar is one of the best things to do in Vernon in the winter.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re visiting Okanagan Valley during summer or winter, a trip up to the Silver Star Mountain Resort is a must. In the winter, it’s all about the snow – the ski field is the closest to Vernon, and it really is the best place to hit the slopes in the area. It’s also one of only two ski resorts in the Okanagan Valley!

If you’re a beginner to skiing and snowboarding, you can grab a beginner lift ticket from $45 CAD per person, which gives you access to the Silver Queen Chairlift and the Magic Carpet Zone. It’s ideal for getting back in the zone if you haven’t skied in a while, or if you’re trying it out for the first time.

You can enjoy the rest of the slopes with an alpine day ticket, starting from just $103 CAD per person! For the best deals, we recommend booking online in advance, as you can save up to 20% off the regular price.

They also offer other fun activities like ice skating and tubing, so if the slopes aren’t your thing, you can still have tons of winter fun here with the whole family.

In the summer months, the mountain becomes a place to take in stunning views and go downhill mountain biking. We opted to take the gondola to the top of the mountain to get even better views and wow, it was so worth it!

Silver Star Mountain Resort near Vernon, BC
SilverStar Mountain Resort near Vernon, BC in the summer.

The gondola starts from $55 CAD per person and travels high above the valley floor. From the top, you can even see Vernon and Kalamalka Lake!

Both the ski and downhill mountain biking passes come in single-day, multi-day, and season pass options. You can book tickets here in advance as early bird specials are the cheapest way to get tickets!

Related Read: Be sure to head to Banff for skiing too, it’s definitely one of the best things to do in Banff National Park!

16. Eat at Station BBQ

the Montreal Smoked Meat Sandwich from Station BBq in Vernon
Now that’s what I call a “sammich!” Photo Credit: Station BBQ

Perhaps you’ve been out hiking, swimming on the lake, or are just really hungry – Station BBQ is waiting for you in Vernon! They serve the most amazing slow-smoked BBQ, authentic and delicious. Just make sure you go hungry!

You can get your meals as “sammiches” (served on a bun) or as plates with side dishes. They offer brisket, pulled pork, Andouille sausage, and more. Side dishes include gumbo, smoked beans, and slaw. They are the “best BBQ north of the south” and I believe it!

If you have room to squeeze in dessert, you must try a slice of their incredible Pecan Pie, it really is to die for.

Station BBQ is open from Wednesday to Sunday from 11:30 am to 7 pm, except for Friday and Saturday, when they are open an hour later until 8 pm.

Where to Stay in Vernon

If you find yourself more drawn to the activities in Vernon in the Okanagan Valley, then here are some personal recommendations for accommodation in Vernon.

On a budget but looking for a central location? Quality Inn & Suites is your answer! Their rooms are nice, and you’re just a few minutes walk away from the best things to do in town. For just over $110 CAD a night including breakfast, it’s also great value.

If you’re looking for something a little more high-end, Prestige Vernon Lodge is the most luxurious hotel in Vernon. It features a pool, hot tub, and glass-enclosed atrium! They have so many rooms, but there’s usually only a few left, so you know it’s good. Fairfield Inn Suites is a decent backup if they are full!

Related Read: If you do stay in Vernon, you’re only 20 minutes from the cute town of Armstrong, BC that’s worth a visit!

17. Hit the slopes at Big White Ski Resort

Skiing at Silver Star Ski Resort
Let’s gooooo!

If you’re in the Okanagan Valley in winter, then be sure to head up for some skiing and snowboarding at Kelowna’s local ski field called Big White Ski Resort. There are plenty of runs for all levels, and the views from there are truly epic.

Prices for full-day lift passes do change depending on whether you’re visiting in the peak season (mid-December to early January, as well as late February). Gear rentals and lessons will be extra. But, if you want more than one day of shredding, multi-day passes are available at a discount.

If I have one piece of advice, though, try to go during the week. Over the weekends it’s much busier, and you’ll spend a lot of time waiting in line for the chairlifts, plus it is also cheaper at around $109 CAD with the online discount. If you do decide to go on the weekend, you can expect to pay $130 CAD for a lift ticket with the discount.

Many people also don’t know that Big White offers their very own horse-drawn sleigh dining tours, where you can get all snug beneath the blankets aboard the sleigh and watch the starry night sky go by, before dropping by the equally-cozy cabin for a delicious meal! The sleigh ride costs $250 CAD for a group of up to 6 people, and the meal is an extra $83 CAD per person.

Visiting Kelowna in the summer? At this time of year, the ski hill is open for downhill mountain biking or sightseeing and hiking. They also run tons of fun summer events too, like Saturday fireworks and much more!

Related Read: Visiting the Okanagan Valley in winter? Read about all of the best things to do in Kelowna in the winter!

18. Go ziplining

oyama zipline adventure park near kelowna
Doesn’t this look EPIC?! Photo Credit: Oyama Adventure Park

Located just 20 minutes north of Kelowna is the wonderful Oyama Adventure Park. Here you’ll find all sorts of aerial attractions, including our personal favorite – ziplining! You’ll whizz through the treetops along their huge zipline course consisting of 7 different zip lines totaling over 2 kilometers (1.24 miles) of line! It is exciting, and the views from up there are stunning too.

Of course, this is a summer activity that should be booked in advance on their website. You can expect to pay around $124 CAD per person for the zipline experience. Kids who weigh less than 50 lbs will, unfortunately, have to give this a miss. However, they have other things to do for kids at the park too, like the Aerial Obstacle Park or the Little Monkey Play Park.

If you’re traveling to Peachland, which is about a 25-minute drive from Kelowna, you might also want to check out Zipzone Adventure Park, another of the best adventure parks in the area!

As well as an epic zipline that stretches 116 meters (381 feet) over the stunning Deep Creek Canyon, Zipzone also offers their signature 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 reservation in advance because they do book up!

19. Walk the Kelowna waterfront

The Kelwona Waterfront
The Kelowna Waterfront Marina

One of the best free things to do in Okanagan Valley is simply walking the waterfront in Kelowna along Okanagan Lake.

Head to downtown Kelowna and go for a stroll along the water’s edge. Visit the marina, waterpark and playground, Hot Sands Beach, and of course the iconic bear statue! For a little longer walk, walk the Waterfront Boardwalk to Tugboat Beach – it’s beautiful at sunset!

Where to Stay in Kelowna

There are so many hotels in Kelowna to choose from! This is a great area to stay in if you plan on partaking in the activities Kelowna has to offer, or if you plan on visiting several parts of Okanagan Valley, as this is the most central location.

Easily the best budget option is Samesun Kelowna. It’s one of the only options for backpackers and it’s close to downtown. You also have the option to book on either Hostelworld.com or Booking.com.

The Coast Capri Hotel is affordable without sacrificing any of the comforts you’ll need for a relaxing and enjoyable stay! Be sure to go to the pool while you’re here, where you can order food and drinks to enjoy poolside.

If you have a larger budget, then Delta Hotels can deliver on luxury! It has both an indoor and outdoor pool, as well as an onsite casino!

20. Hike to Hardy Falls

Hardy Falls in the Okanagan in winter
Hardy Falls in the winter

Who doesn’t love an easy trail with high reward? That’s exactly what you’ll get with Hardy Falls. It’s a 0.8 km (0.5 mile) out-and-back trail right in Peachland.

It’s accessible year-round and takes you along Peachland’s Deep Creek while crossing eight bridges before arriving at Hardy Falls. During August and September is peak salmon spawning season, so there will be hundreds of Kokanee salmon to watch swimming!

This is one of the best short hikes in the Okanagan Valley, and it’s also wheelchair accessible. The trail does tend to get busy on weekends, so if you’re looking to visit when it’s quiet, we recommend visiting on a weekday.

Where to Stay in Peachland

Peachland is small, but you can still find some great options for hotels if you choose to stay in this area.

Lakeview Gardens B&B is super adorable, just 3.2 km (2 miles) from the heart of Peachland, and close to all of the attractions. You can find rooms here for around $150 CAD per night.

Personally, I would splurge a little bit more and stay at The Cove Lakeside Resort. It’s located about 10 km (6 miles) outside of Peachland in the heart of the Okanagan Valley, but the lake and mountain views are out of this world! They have spa services and a marina with boat tours and water sport lessons as well.

The Cove is also great if you want to explore Peachland and Kelowna, as it’s right in between the two! Rooms here start at around $165 CAD.

21. Walk the Historic Trout Creek Trestle

Enjoy a short, scenic stroll across the Trout Creek Trestle Bridge and take in all of the glory of Trout Creek Canyon and Okanagan Lake.

Along with beautiful views, there is also a lot of history here. The bridge was the highest structure on the Kettle Valley Railway (KVR) (more on that later). This section of the KVR is the only area that still features a working 1912 steam train during the summer and for special events.

If you have plenty of time to explore, you can always do the full 6 km (3.7 mile) hike.

After you’re done, treat yourself to something sweet from Summerland Sweets. They have gourmet jams, nut brittles, jelly candies, and more!

22. Explore the Summerland Ornamental Gardens

entrance to Summerland Ornamental Gardens
These gardens are well worth a visit when you’re in the Okanagan Valley. Photo Credit: Summerland Ornamental Gardens

You can explore a beautiful 15 acres (6 hectares) of flower beds, shrubs, and heritage trees at the Summerland Ornamental Gardens, which traces its history all the way back to 1914! While you’re here, you can also learn about topics such as conserving water and the value of native pollinators – it’s a fun, outdoorsy activity that’s also great for families.

Better yet, you can enjoy a picnic in the Weeping Beech Garden, or take a hike along the Canyon Trail.

The gardens are open year-round, however, they have the most beautiful blooms in the spring and summer. There is no admission fee, but you can give a small donation here. Hours do vary by season, but generally, the gardens are open from 8 am through to 4 pm.

23. Hike the summit of Giant’s Head

Views of the lake and valley from the summit of Giants Head Mountain
Aren’t the views from the top stunning?

Giant’s Head Mountain is a dormant volcano and one of the most distinctive peaks in the southern Okanagan region. It’s another easy trail, that provides great views and a unique experience.

Giant’s Head Loop is a 2.6 km (1.6 mile) moderately trafficked out-and-back trail. It’s best hiked between the months of May through October, and you can even expect to see wildflowers on the trail during this time.

You can kind of choose your own adventure with Giant’s Head. If you want to have a longer trek to the summit, you can park at the base of the hill. If you’re looking for something a little shorter, you can drive up a little further to the parking lot at the top of the hill.

Once you’re at the top, enjoy the patchwork of vineyards and the sparkling waters of Okanagan Lake. 

24. Shop Summerland’s downtown

The cute town of Summerland is well worth a visit if you have the time, and the downtown area is equally vibrant and charming! You can easily spend an enjoyable morning or afternoon checking out the boutiques, shops, and restaurants.

Downtown Summerland is easily walkable, so stop in at True Grain Bakehouse and grab one of their amazingly fresh, local, organic, handcrafted bread, that pairs nicely with a coffee from The Beanery Cafe.

If it’s too late for coffee, that means you’re just in time for wine! You won’t be short on options here in Summerland, but they are scattered a bit on the outskirts of downtown, so you’ll need to drive to them. We love Haywire Winery on the northeastern side of town, as well as Heaven’s Gate Winery to the southeast.

25. Visit Skaha Lake Park

Views at Skaha Lake Park
Views at Skaha Lake Park

I told ya, the Okanagan Valley didn’t get its name for no reason! One of the best things to do in the Okanagan Valley is to check out all of the amazing lakes and beaches, and Skaha Lake Park is one of the top beaches in Canada. This is hands down one of the top things to do in Penticton.

Skaha Lake Park is a great activity whether you’re with friends or family. There are playgrounds, watersports, ball courts, and plenty of other outdoor fun offered. The 21-acre park has quite a variety of year-round recreational opportunities ready to be taken advantage of.

What’s the best way to end a beach day? With a couple of scoops of ice cream, of course! On your way out, be sure to stop at Tickleberry’s – On The Beach to try one of their 72 flavors!

26. Check out the Kettle Valley Rail Trail

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

What was once a rail corridor for the now-abandoned Kettle Valley Railway, is now a multi-use recreational rail trail, called the Kettle Valley Rail Trail.

You can jog, walk, cycle, or even go horseback riding on the trail. This is the same trail that I mentioned previously, as it also runs through Summerland and Kelowna.

The part of the trail that runs through Penticton is McCulloch Trestle. Some of the highlights include the amazing views, the huge Penticton sign, and the wooden trestle bridge. I recommend parking in town and walking to this trail, as parking can get tricky depending on the time of day you come.

The trail is mostly gravel and can be dusty on dry days. If it isn’t too dry, I recommend biking this trail. You can rent a mountain bike from Hoodoo Adventures online (with a 48-hour notice) or in person for just $55 CAD for the full day and if you only want a half-day rental (4 hours or less) these are only available in person after 1 pm and are first come first serve.

If you want to join the Kettle Valley Rail Trail from Kelowna, Lakeside Eco-Sports offers this e-bike rental which I mentioned earlier. This starts at $41 CAD for 2 hours and can be booked for up to 8 hours.

27. Penticton Farmers’ Market

Locals and visitors exploring the Penticton Farmers' Market on a sunny day
Ready to do a little shopping?

Since the Okanagan Valley is known for its fresh fruit and premiere agricultural regions, you know they have to have great farmers markets! Everything you’ll find at the market is locally grown and produced.

The Penticton Farmers Market runs on Saturdays from 9 am to 1 pm (mid-April through the end of October). There are usually around 80 vendors each week, and you can find locally grown fruits and vegetables, artisan goods, fresh honey, and even local wineries and craft distilleries.

Related Read: Another must while you’re here is to join one of the top Penticton wine tours in the Naramata Bench region. This beautiful area makes some stellar wine!

28. LocoLanding Adventure Park

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

LocoLanding is an amusement park packed with fun for the whole family. They have rock climbing, go-karts, bumper boats, mini-golf, a ropes course, and more!

They also have Badlands, which is the largest outdoor inflatable park in Canada. I’m not going to lie, you can find me here even without kids.

You have the option to purchase activities individually, or you can do their value pack which includes one ticket for each activity for just $42 CAD! The best part is, with the value pack you can spread it out over a couple of days if you want. It can be used over multiple days until all of the activities have been done once.

They are only open seasonally in the spring and summer.

29. Float down the Penticton River Channel

people of the Penticton River float
This is so much fun! Photo credit: amykmitchell on Deposit Photos

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

With Coyote Cruises, you can rent a single, double, or even quad tube! It costs $19 CAD per person, $38 CAD for two people, and $100 CAD to rent for groups of up to 12 people, so it’s definitely more cost-effective if you’re able to bundle with a large group! This also includes your shuttle ride back to where you started. Not too bad for a half-day activity!

If you have your own tube, you can also just pay for a shuttle ride from Coyote Cruises, making it an even cheaper activity.

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

If you want to bring things that can’t get wet, Coyote Cruises sell dry bags for you to use. Take some snacks and refreshments, and don’t forget your sunscreen!

Where to Stay in Penticton

Penticton is full of so many fun activities, if they wear you out, and you end up wanting to check into a hotel in the area, here are a couple of options:

Okanagan Lakefront Resort is a great option if you’re not trying to spend too much on accommodation. We think it’s fantastic value and the reviews here really do speak for themselves. Plus the rooms and grounds look lovely. You’re even within walking distance of LocoLanding! Rates here start at around $161 CAD per night.

For just a little more, you can splurge and stay at the Penticton Lakeside Resort. It’s beachfront and has a private beach on Okanagan Lake. The hotel has on-site dining with 24-hour room service, a hair salon, a gift shop, a bar, and a private marina.

They also have an indoor pool and hot tub, great for those visiting Penticton in the winter. Rooms start at around $251 CAD per night, although you can find great deals if you book in advance.

30. Rattlesnake Canyon

Now this is family-friendly fun! Photo Credit: Rattlesnake Canyon

I know Rattlesnake Canyon sounds like some sort of hike or strenuous activity, but it’s actually a fun, western mining-themed amusement park located off Main Street in Osoyoos!

They have activities like go-karts and bumper boats, an arcade, and rides like the Tornado which is 30 swing chairs ready to take you on an aerial tour of Osoyoos.

There is no admission fee, you simply purchase tickets individually for any attraction you want to experience. They also offer all-day passes for $64.95 CAD.

Their hours do fluctuate a little year-on-year and have yet to be announced for 2024, so be sure to check their website for updates.

31. Visit Osoyoos Lake

Blue skies and mountains in the background at Haynes Point on Osoyoos Lake
Haynes Point on Osoyoos Lake

Osoyoo Lake is probably Osoyoo’s biggest attraction (literally and figuratively) – this lake actually stretches across the U.S. border into Washington state! Here you will find several peaceful, sandy beaches along the shoreline.

People are drawn to this lake for its beauty, but also for the warm water. During the summers, the water temperature gets to be around 26-33 degrees Celsius (79-91 degrees Fahrenheit). Osoyoos Lake is actually one of the warmest freshwater lakes in Canada.

There are several ways to enjoy this lake, including swimming, canoeing, fishing, or water skiing, just to name a few! Regardless of how you choose to enjoy it, it’s sure to be a lovely time on one of the most popular lakes in the Okanagan Valley!

32. Check out the Okanagan Art Gallery

This place is an art lover’s dream! Photo Credit: Okanagan Art Gallery

Checking out the Okanagan Art Gallery is a unique thing to do in Okanagan Valley, and also a great rainy day activity in Osoyoos. Here you’ll find art from some of Okanagan’s most talented artists.

The gallery has art from several different artists with a variety of different styles and mediums. Better yet, local artists are often on-site at the gallery to answer questions and provide insight into their work. It’s not too often you get to experience that at an art gallery!

They also frequently host events, and have live demonstrations, workshops, and classes. So be sure to check them out during their opening hours, which are Tuesday to Saturday from 11 am to 4 pm.

33. Golf at Fairview Mountain

view of the course at Fairview Mountain Golf Club
A beautiful day for some golf! Photo Credit: Fairview Mountain Golf Course

Osoyoos is home to several amazing golf courses, but Fairview Mountain tops them as it’s one of the most popular golf courses in all of British Columbia. What better than a golf course in the heart of Canada’s wine country? Tee off with views of vineyards beckoning in the distance.

If you visit during shoulder season (March, April, and dates in October), you can experience this amazing course for 2/3 of the price of the regular season. During the regular season, 18 holes have a $99 CAD green fee from open to 2:00 pm.

After a game, be sure to check out their restaurant for a drink and a bite. They have quite an extensive menu with a great variety, and it’s notably one of the best dining spots in the area.

34. Be amazed at Spotted Lake

I know that I said each lake was different from the last, but Spotted Lake truly is like no other lake you have ever seen so far in the Okanagan Valley! Spotted Lake quite literally looks like a polka-dotted lake. The lake has several rich mineral deposits such as magnesium sulfate, sodium sulfate, and calcium.

When temperatures rise, causing some of the water to evaporate, the concentrated mineral deposits create what appear to be large spots on the surface of the lake. The spots are different colors and shades depending on what particular combination of minerals are in that specific area.

Spotted Lake holds significant cultural importance to the Okanagan Sylix people, and the lake is closed to the public. You can still admire the lake and its spots from the fence and is definitely still worth the visit.

If you’re visiting Okanagan Valley in the winter, you won’t be able to see the spots as the water levels are too high.

Where to Stay in Osoyoos

The great thing about Osoyoos is there are a lot of affordably priced hotel options that really give you the most bang for your buck. So if you’re worn out from a long day at Osoyoos Lake and need a place to crash, here are a few of the best hotel options for Osoyoos:

For a great budget hotel, I recommend Westridge Motor Inn. This hotel features an outdoor pool, grilling facilities, and a great location (just 3 minutes from downtown). The rooms are also very clean and cozy. Prices start from $115 CAD per night.

Walnut Beach Resort gives you a luxury feel at an affordable price if you don’t mind spending a little more than the hotel I mentioned previously. Rates start at just $187 CAD per night, and you will be staying on a beachfront property that has its very own private beach. They also have rooms with lagoon or mountain views, and even have airport transport available!

Renting a Car in British Columbia

A rural road with Mt Currie in the background
Road trips are the best way to explore Canada!

If you’re arriving in British Columbia via plane, then I can’t recommend getting a rental car enough. British Columbia is a large province, and traveling between the best places to visit in BC requires transport. Although you can use public transport on some occasions, this means your trip will not only require more time but more planning.

Car rental in Canada isn’t relatively cheap, but it’s not that expensive either, especially if you get a budget car. The cheapest car with a pick-up and drop-off in different locations is around $100 CAD per day. The price does vary though, depending on the time of year. For car rentals, I use the website Discover Cars. It’s a search engine with lots of deals with good customer service. In fact, I’ve used Discover Cars all over the world, including in Chile, New Zealand, and Australia. Read my honest review of Discover Cars here for more details!

Another popular option is to rent a campervan or motorhome (only for the brave in winter.) Using Motorhome Republic, you can search hundreds of deals across multiple companies to pick a great vehicle and the cheapest price. Having a motorhome is a stunning way to see Canada, and using crown land and campsites, you can often camp for free or very cheap in the most beautiful places imaginable!

Thanks for reading!

Bailey and I take a photo together at a winery in Kelowna on our wine tour
Thanks for reading!

There are truly so many things to do in the Okanagan Valley, and I hope this comprehensive list has given you a lot to think about. But, as you can see, regardless of when you plan your visit to the Okanagan Valley, you are sure to have a fun-filled itinerary!

Let us know in the comments which area you are most looking forward to exploring, and be sure to check out some of our other Canada blogs before you leave!

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