okanagan valley

Okanagan Valley

For the past few days, we have been happily traveling as a quartet. Halfway between Vancouver and the national parks of Jasper and Banff, we make a short stop in the Okanagan Valley. The climate in the valley is extremely dry and temperatures can easily exceed 40 degrees Celsius in the summer. The Okanagan Valley is very well known for its excellent wines: over 180 wineries, some of them award-winning, are located in this 250-kilometre long valley.


We spend a few days by the Okanagan Lake, south of the city of Kelowna. We have naturally planned to visit some wineries and short hikes are also on the agenda. On such beautiful summer days, we particularly like to cool off in the water of Okanagan Lake. With a length of about 130 km, the lake has many beautiful beaches. We especially like the quiet and pleasant Boyce-Gyro beach with amazing clear water.

Our highlights

Zac's Airbnb

Swim in the lake

Boyce-Gyro Beach Park

Kettle Valley Pub

Barn Owl Brewing

Wine tasting

There are many wine producers on both west and east coasts of Okanagan Lake. Most of them also offer wine tasting. We wisely decide to leave the car at home and visit three wineries that we can reach by foot from our apartment.

We like Summerhill Pyramid Vinery the most. With a breathtaking view on the Okanagan Lake and in complete tranquility, we can taste five wines of our choice on the winery’s terrace. Good bottles, all organically grown, are part of this top-notch tasting. We get excellent advice from our hostess, but also from Monique and Michel who share with us some interesting tasting techniques they recently learned in a wine course. The pinot noir in particular catches our attention and we make sure to take a bottle with us for the next dinner.

Although it is mostly a traditional wine region, the craft beer scene has also taken hold in the Okanagan Valley. As elsewhere in North America, there are many microbreweries there. At the Barn Owl Brewery, located a few minutes’ walk from our apartment, we particularly appreciate the selection of beers in a beautifully renovated barn.

Our highlights

Summerhill Pyramid Vinery

Wine tasting

Some nice walks

On a sunny day, we also took two short walks.

Already at the beginning of the trail, Paul’s Tomb Trail takes us to a higher elevation. After that, a nice and elevated path takes us along Okanagan Lake up to the shore. Along the way, we enjoy beautiful views of the bright blue lake and the arid yellow hills.

A second walk takes us to Myra Canyon and the Kettle Valley Rail Trail. We take a walk along the first few kilometers. The entire 25 km of this former Canadian Pacific Railway line passes over 18 hand-built wooden bridges and through two tunnels. The trestles, which are up to 220 meters long and between 8 and 55 meters high, had to be completely restored in 2003 following a major forest fire. We are particularly interested in the historical context of this hiking trail.

Our highlights

Paul’s Tomb Trail


Myra Canyon Trestles

Old Railway