Day 1

The Journey Begins in Osoyoos

After wrapping up work early, we load up the car, open the sunroof, and start a new audiobook — a sure sign we are going on a road trip. Travelling with my husband John, we are excited about a getaway. Giddy almost. This adventure will take us on a trip through the stunning South Okanagan.

We begin our journey by driving to Osoyoos, a place we love visiting because it’s close enough to our home in Summerland that it’s an easy getaway, yet far enough away to feel like we are truly on vacation.

Driving south through the lush green orchards and vineyards of the Okanagan Valley, we feel the warm sunshine beating down on us through the sunroof, preparing us for our arrival in the warmest place in Canada. Along the way, we soak up the views of the lakes and rolling mountains and eagerly chat about our plans for the rest of the day.

We arrive in Canada’s desert community of Osoyoos, located just 4 km north of the Canada/USA border, and check-in at the Watermark Beach Resort & Conference Centre. We are a bit early, giving us time to sit out on our balcony and savour the view of the lake. We decide to head out for a walk around the gorgeous resort and property before dinner.

Just steps from the front door, we hop on the path that runs between the resort and Osoyoos Lake, one of BC’s warmest lakes, and down to the beach to dip our toes in the water. We check out the people on the beach as we stretch our legs after the drive, greeting dogs and their owners. There’s so much to see as we take in the lake on one side of the path, and the resort, swimming pool, waterslide, and hot tub on the other side. Everything is so inviting, and we can’t wait to enjoy them all.

brewery
Orchard and Vineyards in Osoyoos, BC

As John and I walk along the pathway, we see signage for 15 Park Bistro, the new restaurant at the Watermark, where we have dinner reservations. We stroll to the entrance, checking out the lovely outdoor patio with giant heaters, as well as the beautifully renovated interior. While the restaurant has been around for many years, it now features a new name, a fresh new look, and a completely reimagined menu. We are seated outdoors near a giant BBQ station with a breathtaking view of the courtyard and Osoyoos Lake.

Checking out the drinks menu to start, as expected, there’s a great wine list featuring wines from Osoyoos, Oliver, and Okanagan Falls. There are craft beers from Osoyoos, Penticton, and all around BC, as well as an inspired cocktail list. I start with the Strathcona Pilsner, which I enjoy as I tap my toes along to the Latin-inspired music that makes me feel like dancing. The patio is full of life, and the servers are attentive to guests even as they prepare a constant stream of to-go orders.

Our server explains the new menu with a focus on regional ingredients and farm-fresh flavours. She points to a garden behind us that includes mint, rosemary, parsley, chives, and more, all of which are used in the dishes. Taking the server up on a recommendation for one of their four signature lobster dishes, we order the lobster ravioli, which features a lovely roasted garlic cream sauce, as well as a steak grilled in front of us at the BBQ station. We share both entrees and thoroughly enjoy both. We leave enough room for dessert: a Black Forest White Chocolate Soup created by Executive Chef Nick Atkins. This signature dessert is pure decadence — one of the best desserts I have had in my lifetime. The presentation is something special, so be sure to have your camera ready.

restaurant
15 Park Bistro, Osoyoos

Completely stuffed, John and I decide to take a walk along the pathway again between the resort and Osoyoos Lake, this time continuing through Gyro Park and then along the road around town. We continue through Veterans Park to check out the flowering cacti, cross the bridge, and then walk along the pathway by the lake as the sun sets on a perfect first day in Osoyoos.

brewery
Osoyoos flora

Day 2

The Journey Continues in Osoyoos

We begin the day with a walk up Main Street, which features store after store of local delights from clothing to giftware to great eats. We continue walking to Town Hall Square for the Osoyoos Farmers’ Market, which has vendors selling local wine, spirits, coffee, fresh produce, preserves, and artisan craft items such as soaps and jewelry.

Afterwards, we head down the other side of Main Street, checking out the shops as we walk towards JoJo’s Café. The line-up tells us that this is definitely the spot for our morning coffee and breakfast. The fresh, made-from-scratch sandwiches, soups, and baked goods all look enticing at this licensed café that serves breakfast and lunch. We order lattés and breakfast sandwiches to-go to enjoy down at the lake. While we wait, we check out the local art on the walls, and when our order is ready we walk past the Watermark Beach Resort to the lake, where we grab a bench and enjoy our breakfast while watching people as they start setting up their spots at the beach.

activity
Downtown Osoyoos, BC

After breakfast, John and I drive to the Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre, located at Spirit Ridge Resort. Nk’Mip (pronounced in-ka-meep) is a family-friendly interpretative and cultural centre owned and operated by the Osoyoos Indian Band. Jenna, an Osoyoos Indian Band member who is our guide, takes us on a tour through the extensive indoor and outdoor exhibits and shares about the culture, the land, and her people.

At the first stop, in the indoor gallery, Jenna shares some fascinating stories as shared to her through the generations dating back to her great, great, great, great grandfather and other elders. From here, Jenna leads us outside, where she points out antelope brush, sagebrush, and other native plants and tells us how each of these was used historically and today.

Viewing themselves as stewards of the land, she tells us their goal is to preserve and protect the land while sharing about desert ecology and how the land provides for all, including the native animals and wildlife. The walk along a desert trail towards a reconstructed traditional village with a pit house and sweat lodge is a sensation for the senses. The sun beats down on our bodies while we breathe in the beautiful smells of the various native plants and listen to the sounds of birds chirping, singing and calling to each other, all while imagining the rich culture of the Osoyoos Indian Band that previously lived on these legendary grounds.

activity
Nk'Mip Desert Cultural Centre in Osoyoos, BC

Wanting to further connect with the land, we drive around Osoyoos and soak up the sights until we find an incredible view spot overlooking Osoyoos that showcases the beauty of the entire town. Here I snapped a few dozen photos of the breathtaking sights.

After our drive, it was time to enjoy some sunshine and some of the incredible amenities back at the Watermark Beach Resort. Located on the street side of the resort, we enter one of BC’s newest breweries, North Basin Brewing, the first craft brewery in Osoyoos. I pick up a couple of crowlers to take back to our room and pop open a refreshing and delicious NEIPA on our balcony while reflecting on the day.

The sights and sounds of the pool beckon, so we don our bathing suits, grab our books, and walk down to the pool. Going back and forth from the pool to the hot tub to the comfy patio chairs to read, all while looking out at Osoyoos Lake, we have trouble deciding on our favourite activity. Altogether, it’s a great way to cool down and relax.

brewery
North Basin Brewing in Osoyoos, BC

Refreshed and recharged, John and I set our sights on dinner, walking back up Main Street to La Marqueza Mexican Tacos and Market. The sights, sounds and smells entice us in. Walking in immediately brings me back to my own trips to the markets in Mexico. Alongside a mix of tourists and locals, we notice many Mexicans in the restaurant eating and shopping the selection of Mexican products available in the store. We learn that many Mexican workers in the area frequent the business to send money back to their families at home.

The constant stream of takeout orders and dishes being served prime our taste buds for fresh authentic Mexican food. We learn from our server that everything is made fresh in-house every day. We devour every bite of our guacamole and chips, tacos, refried beans, and rice. Delicious, spicy and super flavourful dishes pair delightfully with Jarritos, fruit-flavoured natural sodas made in Mexico.

restaurant
La Marqueza, Osoyoos

Ready to relax for the evening, we head back over to North Basin Brewing. It is a part of the Watermark Beach Resort complex and features an indoor taproom and beautiful patio spaces on the side and in front of the taproom. The dog-friendly patio looks out to the north basin of Osoyoos Lake.

We meet with Wes, the owner. I order a flight of four beers, and we sit down on the patio. Wes joins us and shares his background, the history of the brewery, and his passion. A mechanic by trade, Wes tells us he moved from Dawson Creek to Osoyoos about seven years ago and began homebrewing with a friend almost five years ago. Without a craft brewery in Osoyoos, Wes first set out crafting a business plan. He wanted to create a spot for people to be together, and he wanted to make beers that were approachable yet different. Wes loves golf, which is evident by the décor and theme of the space, the branding, and the crowler labels.

While opening during the pandemic wasn’t in his business plan, Wes has clearly set out to accomplish the other goals in his plan. The vibe is fun and friendly. Customers talk to each other across the tables, and you get a sense of the tightness in the community in this space. Wes offers a friendly greeting to each set of customers as they walk out onto the patio. He is clearly thankful for the community support he’s received to date, telling us that he wouldn’t have survived through the pandemic without the support of locals.

Wes takes us on a tour of the tiny 5 hL brewhouse and tells us about his plans for the future. He wants to stay small and local. He wants to give his brewer Kody creative freedom on the beers he brews. With flights, pints, and crowlers to go, he aims to serve his taproom customers. Lucky poolside customers at the Watermark and local golf courses will also be able to get the beer on tap. He doesn’t envision packaging the beer any time soon.

I admire the gorgeous patio tables as we sit back down on the patio, and Wes tells me that he and a buddy made them out of fir. They are stunning. A comfortable place to hang out and visit with friends and neighbours. Wes also lets us know about the food program. The space is small, so they encourage customers to bring their own food (BYOF), order from a nearby food truck, or get food delivered by local restaurants. They offer some select food items like pretzels and dog treats made with spent grains from the brewery by the Lake Village Bakery, as well as housemade seltzers and local wines.

After enjoying a flight, I order a pint of the NEIPA, which turns out to be my favourite, and Wes tells me it’s also his current favourite. Before he heads off to chat with some other customers, Wes tells me the brewery is open daily and plans to carry this on throughout the year. Many businesses close for the winter in this tourist community, but Wes plans to keep the taproom open all year as a place for people to gather, just as he wanted in his business plan. He looks forward to hosting some events and live music as restrictions allow. In the meantime, North Basin Brewing is a great space to make yourself at home, order a flight, bring a game or some cards, chat with friends, and enjoy a delightful time.

brewery
North Basin Brewing in Osoyoos, BC

Day 3

Hopping up to Oliver

Before we depart Osoyoos, which Expedia named to the list of the Top 20 friendliest cities in Canada, we grab a coffee for the drive to the Osoyoos Desert Centre. With a self-guided tour booklet in hand, we head outside to the 1.5 km elevated wooden boardwalk, which meanders through a natural habitat showcasing plant and animal life native to the area. We stop many times and learn more about rattlesnakes, spiders, cottontail bunnies, and even scat. We also learn more about the native plants and wildflowers, pausing multiple times along the way for stunning photo opportunities.

On the drive from the Osoyoos Desert Centre to Oliver, my patient husband stops the car multiple times so I can take photos of the orchards, vineyards, sagebrush, and rattlesnake crossing signs. As we are driving, we can almost see the orchards and vines soaking up the desert sunshine and heat.

activity
Osoyoos Desert Centre, Osoyoos, BC

With excitement and intrigue, we walk up to the newly opened District Wine Village, located at the Senkulmen Enterprise Park, on land owned by the Osoyoos Indian Band. As we look around Canada’s first true wine village, surrounded by vineyards, we see the home/future home of 16 artisan producers all centred around a giant 600-person multi-purpose amphitheatre. The highly anticipated District Wine Village celebrated its grand opening in June 2021 and will ultimately feature 13 wineries, one brewery, an eatery, and possibly a distillery.

I pause and take in the stunning sights of the buildings, each beautifully built with a patio and water feature, before walking into Trading Post Brewing, the featured brewery, located beside the Trading Post Eatery among the wineries. I head inside and check out Trading Post’s beautiful and funky new space.

The owners of Trading Post Brewing, who previously opened a brewery and two eateries in the Fraser Valley, eagerly signed on as the exclusive brewery in the District Wine Village. The new location has eight taps, offering four core beers along with seasonals, collaborations, and guest taps. The impressive selection of merchandise catches my eye, as does the wall featuring graphics describing the brewing process.

Head Brewer Jason joins us on the patio and we enjoy a beer alongside some delicious eats from the Trading Post Eatery as he shares his thoughts on upcoming plans at the brewery.

Jason takes me for a walk through the cozy 10-hL brewhouse. He excitedly describes the future beers he plans to brew with local fruits, future wine and beer collaborations, and an upcoming collaboration with Sid from Oliver’s Firehall Brewing.

Over at Trading Post Eatery, I meet with Chef Natasha who talks about the food program with an emphasis on showcasing local in the dishes. As the only eatery in the District Wine Village, she and her team have created a selection of grab-and-go dishes and charcuterie boxes made to enjoy with beer or wine on any of the patios, or while seated in the amphitheatre. She also points out the made-to-order dishes, including falafel bowls, pizzas, and more.

Before heading out, I sit down in one of the comfy patio chairs and feel the warmth of the sunshine on my face and arms as I look out into what is sure to be a unique and special destination in Oliver. It’s a perfect stop for wine and craft beer lovers as well as foodies. It’s like a wine tour all in one location without the driving.

brewery
Jason from Trading Post Brewery in Oliver, BC

From the District Wine Village, we take a short drive and check in at the newly built Coast Oliver Hotel, centrally located in Canada’s Wine Capital. After a quick clean-up, we walk up the hill to Firehall Brewery. Aptly named, the brewery is located downstairs at the original fire station in Oliver, with Pappa’s Firehall Bistro upstairs. Although the two businesses are owned separately, a dumbwaiter joins the two businesses so that Firehall customers can enjoy food from the kitchen upstairs. We sit down at a comfy table with a big umbrella on the giant outdoor patio. I order a beer cleverly named following the fire theme — a Backdraft Blonde Ale — and we order dinner from Pappa’s mini menu available at the brewery. We stop and say hello to Otis, a dog sitting with his owners at the table beside us on the kid- and dog-friendly patio. The space is super casual, warm, and comfortable, and yet also quirky and fun. I note the Carpe Diem sign on the wall behind the tables filled with locals enjoying an after-work beer.

Owners Sid and Marie-Eve chat with me, while Sid’s dad Jim prepares to make some beer deliveries to local customers. Families are welcome at this family-run brewery in wine country, which celebrated its tenth anniversary last year. Sid shares their pride in having created such a community hub in Oliver. There are no clocks or TV screens at Firehall — the space is designed to give an opportunity to connect with family and friends. They celebrate life, art, culture, and music in this space and enjoy featuring live music regularly.

Before heading out, I check out the new mural on the wall, and ask Sid and Marie-Eve to strike a pose by the beer shower selfie station painted into the mural. I also grab some of the Backdraft Blonde Ale to go, which is newly available in 473ml cans.

brewery
Firehall Brewery in Oliver, BC

John and I decide to take a walk on the beautiful pathway we noticed earlier from our hotel room. The pathway, which is part of the network of trails that form the KVR Trail, flanks the Okanagan River and is a beautiful spot for an evening walk. It’s a popular path for cyclists, hikers, birders, and nature lovers since wildlife, bald eagles, and osprey can often be seen.

We walk for quite a while as we reflect on our time in Oliver. It’s a unique and special town where the emphasis is on the land, agriculture, arts, and food, in addition to the burgeoning wine and craft beer scene. The connection to the land is important in Oliver where there are many tributes to the local Indigenous communities, including the Okanagan Salmon Chief statue located at the Coast Oliver Hotel.

After reading more about the Okanagan Salmon Chief, we take a walk around the hotel property and also notice several vines on the grounds, further showcasing the agricultural and farm-to-table focus in this community. Then, we head back to our room to change into our bathing suits for a well-deserved soak in the indoor pool and hot tub before bed.

brewery
Okanagan River Channel Walk in Oliver, BC

Day 4

The Path to Penticton

John and I get an early start on the day, check out from the hotel, and begin our journey to Penticton, Canada’s Craft Beer Capital. On the way, we stop a couple of times to capture more of the beauty of Oliver before pulling into Penticton.

Ready for breakfast and coffee, our first stop of the day is at Nautical Dog Café, located at Skaha Lake Park. We order coffee and share a delicious breakfast sandwich with fresh fruit and a cheese scone while sitting out on the massive patio. The sun is shining, the sky is blue, and we notice that every seat on the patio has a fabulous view of the marina and Skaha Lake. We watch as kayakers and boaters head out on the lake for the day.

Taking our coffee to go, we stretch our legs with a long and leisurely walk through beautiful Skaha Lake Park. We enjoy people watching and notice kids playing on the beach, adults playing volleyball, and loads of people walking their dogs, rollerblading and biking on the wide pathway.

activity
Skaha Lake Park in Penticton, BC

Parched after our long walk in the hot sun, we arrive at the newly renovated taproom at Tin Whistle Brewing, located in the historic Cannery Trade Centre. It seems fitting that the first Penticton brewery we visit is also the oldest. After having celebrated its 25th anniversary last year, Penticton’s oldest brewery has new owners in Tim and Alexis. Checking out the renovations, the new creative outdoor space, and fresh new branding, it’s clear Tim and Alexis have breathed new life into Tin Whistle.

Tim pours a flight of beers and shows me some of the new packaging on their newly released 473ml cans. He tells me that everything pays tribute to the old branding while making it their own. The indoor taproom is family-friendly and the new outdoor space is dog-friendly. As I check out the patio, I stop and give a dog on the patio a few scratches only to learn that its name, fittingly, is Brew.

Alexis tells me about the goals and plans for the brewery. With six or seven beers on tap, they have a small but thoughtful beer list. While I taste through the flight of beer, she talks of their commitment to being a carbon-neutral brewhouse and their desire to be very mindful of the environmental impacts. Very hands-on, Tim and Alexis greet customers, chat about the beer and brewery, and Tim even takes some customers on an impromptu brewery tour while we are there. Tim invites us back and encourages us to bring our own vinyl to listen to next time.

brewery
Tin Whistle Brewing in Penticton, BC

Ready to refuel, we head over to the Barley Mill Brew Pub & Bistro. We decide on a table on the large patio, noticing the heaters, sun sails, and gazebos designed to provide heat or shade as needed. As I sip on a Cerveza “Lime” Berg, a craft beer with lime slush, I feel the warmth of the sun kissing my arms on the casual and welcoming patio. We chat briefly with the table of cyclists biking from brewery to brewery throughout Penticton, which Lonely Planet named Canada’s Craft Beer Capital in 2020.

We inhale a flavourful and fresh cranberry chicken flatbread and then check out the indoor space. The building replicates an old English Tudor-style building and is home to many events, including karaoke, trivia nights, and sports on the big screen TV.

On our way out, we check out the cooler filled with beer-to-go, including new 355ml cans of beer brewed by Head Brewer Shawn to celebrate the brewpub’s 25th anniversary.

pub
Barley Mill Brew Pub & Bistro in Penticton, BC

We check into our hotel, the Penticton Lakeside Resort and Conference Centre. Our room in the beautiful new tower features floor-to-ceiling windows looking out over Okanagan Lake. Before heading out for the evening, we decide we have time for some R&R on our giant balcony to take in the stunning lake and park view. The comfy patio chairs call out to us to sit down, relax, pop open a beer, and crack open a book. The Resort’s downtown location makes it a perfect spot for some people-watching as crowds head to the beach, cycle along the boardwalk, and walk around downtown.

brewery
Penticton Lakeside Resort & Conference Centre in Penticton, BC

Ready for dinner, John and I take a short walk to one of Penticton’s newest breweries, Neighbourhood Brewing. We get a table looking out on the spacious, family-friendly and dog-friendly patio, packed with people laughing and enjoying the evening.

Owned by three lifelong best friends and their families, the space is very welcoming. One of the owners, also named John, brings me my beer and shares that to them, Neighbourhood means family, and everyone is welcome here. I enjoy the Pizzazz Lychee Sour while John tells me about the beer line-up. They have 20 Neighbourhood beers on tap, three from sister brewery Yellow Dog Brewing in Port Moody, plus three ciders and four local wines, and 10 taps available exclusively for growler fills. He also encourages me to come back and try something new as they release a small batch of R&D beer every Friday.

Starving, we order a selection of spicy tacos and burritos, which I enjoy with the Sunshine City Passion Fruit Wheat Ale. The dishes are served with four fresh house-made sauces. My husband John adds the spiciest sauce to his burrito while I go with the milder Green Jaguar Avocado Jalapeno salsa sauce. The food is filling and delicious, which we enjoy while the early evening sun streams onto the patio. Penticton’s Neighbourhood Brewing has quickly become a must-visit stop.

brewery
Neighbourhood Brewing in Penticton, BC

We decide to walk off our delicious dinner along the boardwalk at Okanagan Lake. We enjoy the light breeze from the lake as we walk from the SS Sicamous to the iconic Peach and watch the sunset on a perfect Penticton evening before returning to our hotel.

brewery
Okanagan Lake Boardwalk in Penticton, BC

Day 5

Bikes and Beers in Penticton

After a very restful sleep, we grab coffee at the Bufflehead, located at the Penticton Lakeside Resort, and enjoy it in the sunshine on the comfy lounge chairs at the Resort’s private beach. We soak up some morning sun as we plan our adventures for the day.

We walk up from the hotel to Hoodoo Adventures, where we check out the various tour and shuttle options and the indoor rock-climbing wall. We consider renting bikes, kayaks, and canoes, but in the end, we agree on e-bikes. As the friendly staff adjust the e-bikes for us, they give us directions and instructions for our ride out to the Little Tunnel in Naramata along the KVR Trail.

activity
Penticton Lakeside Resort in Penticton, BC

After leaving Hoodoo Adventures, John and I decide a hearty breakfast is in order to fuel us for our bucket-list bike ride. We head up Vancouver Hill on the way to the KVR Trail and stop in at The Bench Market. We peruse the selection of grocery items, including local cheeses, crackers, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, pasta, and sea salts, as we walk up to order our breakfast. Along with lattés, I order the Bench Benny and John orders sausages and eggs with slow-cooked beans. We enjoy our delicious meal on the dog-friendly patio while watching other cyclists begin their rides.

Fueled and ready for our adventure, we ride up to the KVR Trail and cycle among the orchards and vineyards, stopping frequently to check out the stunning views. We pass many locations that look inviting for us to stop along the way, including wineries on the famed Naramata Bench, cideries, distilleries, and even spots that make honey and cheese. With rain forecasted for the afternoon, we decide to press on with our ride for today, and make a mental note of places to visit on a return trip.

Other than a couple of bigger hills, most of the path is graded at an incline of 2.2% so it’s a gradual climb. Even with the e-bike, after the 90-minute ride up, I can feel the impact of the climb in my legs. Once we reach the Little Tunnel, we pause and congratulate ourselves on a great ride up. Far off in the distance, we can see the Penticton Lakeside Resort, back at lake level where we started the day, and realize the magnitude of the climb we have just completed. The views are stunning and well worth the sore legs.

activity
Ride to the Little Tunnel in Penticton, BC

After some water and granola bars, we begin our descent back, which is much quicker. Along the way, we stop to check out Penticton’s eighth brewery, Abandoned Rail Brewing. We meet with co-owner Scott who shows us around the brewhouse, the taproom, and the property. Although it was not quite open when we visited, it will be open by the time you are reading this.

The brewery is on the site previously known as The Trail Store, situated among apple orchards. You can enjoy a craft beer in the taproom or on the patio while looking out at the new crop of barley growing on the property. Sure to be a very popular stop on the KVR Trail, hikers and cyclists can enjoy their range of beers on tap with fitting names like One Track Mind and Tunnel Vision. I had a chance to try the Goldenauer Golden Ale in the sunshine. Scott tells me that they’ll have food trucks and other food to go items available soon. As a tribute to The Trail Store, the family-friendly patio will also feature apple slushies.

brewery
Abandoned Rail Brewing Co, Penticton

After returning our bikes to Hoodoo Adventures, John and I walk with jelly legs over to Slackwater Brewing for lunch. We definitely earned a beer and lunch, so this is the perfect post-ride stop. With our choice of two patios and two indoor seating areas, we decide to enjoy lunch in the centre of the action between the brewhouse and the street-level patio on the main level of the large space that used to be a nightclub.

I order a Nautical Nonsense Pineapple Sour with Pink Salt, which is fruity, tart, and super refreshing after our ride. We devour our delicious and hearty lunches. The breeze from the open garage doors also helps to cool us down after our ride.

After lunch, we check out the upcoming events schedule and make a note to come back for Tuesday trivia night soon. As we walk out of the brewery, we pause to check out the fantastic new mural that is painted on the side of the building.

brewery
Slackwater Brewing in Penticton, BC

From Slackwater, we walk over to Bad Tattoo Brewing. The delicious smell of pizza almost makes us hungry again, but this time we decide to focus just on the beer. I order a flight of five new releases and enjoy them on the beautiful covered patio. My favourite is the refreshing Watermelon Gose. As beers on the beach are allowed on many of Penticton’s beaches, we make future plans to enjoy pizza and some of these great choices at the beach just half a block away.

While we didn’t have pizza this time, I definitely recommend their inspired pizza selections. You can choose from pizzas with red sauce or pesto sauce, or choose one of the fabulous options under the “Weird” category.

As we finish up, John and I stroll through the Badlands, the new seasonal space Bad Tattoo opened behind the brewery. There’s a chill vibe as people chat, listen to music, and enjoy the misting stations in the casual and fun family-friendly outdoor space.

brewery
Bad Tattoo Brewing in Penticton, BC

Still a bit thirsty from our long bike ride, we walk over to Cannery Brewing, also located in Penticton’s downtown brewery district. As I’ve worked with Cannery Brewing for almost 15 years, it always feels like home to me when I’m here. We grab a table in the Cannery Backyard and chat with a few friends who are at the table beside us.

The Cannery Backyard is a dog- and family-friendly seasonal outdoor space behind the brewhouse with turf, picnic tables, umbrellas, lights, and all the comforts of a backyard at home. We check out the rotating food truck and then order some slushies. A Sunblink Berry Sour slush for me and a non-alcoholic fruit juice slush for John hits the spot and quenches our thirst.

As it’s starting to cool down, we decide to move inside the taproom, where we are ready now to enjoy a plate of delicious nachos. We go with the chicken nachos with oven-roasted artichokes and peppers. After a nice chat with Patt, the owner, we say goodbye.

brewery
Cannery Brewing in Penticton, BC

As we leave Cannery Brewing, we walk across the street to check out the newly opened Highway 97 Brewing. Having outgrown its original location, they are now happily settled in their new larger location. John and Nick, father and son owners, show us around their new brewhouse and taproom. John tells us that they wanted to create a casual and comfortable European Beer Hall atmosphere in their new and spacious 97-seat taproom. They have 22 taps, sharing tables, and full food service with a funky menu including baked Bavarian pretzels, wings, savoury meat pies, charcuterie boards and gourmet hot dogs. They have a live entertainment stage and we make a note to come back for Saturday night music.

We also have a look around the new brewhouse and check out the shiny new tanks. They’ve expanded their production capacity significantly and added a lot of new equipment including 4 new fermenters and a new canning line.

Leaving Highway 97 Brewing, we pause for a moment to look at their 42-seat soon-to-open patio. So much fun to be had at the corner of Westminster and Ellis with patio guests at Highway 97 being able to wave to the patio guests at Cannery Brewing.

With sore legs from our bike ride, bellies full of delicious beer and eats, we decide it’s time to head back to our home in Summerland.

brewery
Highway 97 Brewing, Penticton

Day 6

Our Hometown Adventure

After a good night’s sleep in our own bed at home in Summerland, we decide we aren’t ready for the adventure to end.

We pack up our dogs, Porter and Merlot, and head for a walk at one of our favourite places in Summerland, a place many of us locals call the trestle. It’s actually called the Mark Ricciardi Walkway, which goes across the Trout Creek Bridge. People walk their dogs, run, and cycle on this path, which is part of the KVR Trail. We stop for some photos from the viewpoint at the middle of the bridge. No matter how many times I stop here, the view takes my breath away. I look out again in amazement at the fabulous valley, high above the creek, with an incredible view of Okanagan Lake and the Summerland Ornamental Gardens.

We carry on past the bridge for a long walk on the KVR Trail, which further rewards us with views of our gorgeous hometown. We’ve walked, biked and snowshoed on this trail, many, many times. It’s an out and back trail, so you can go as far as you want and then turn around. We eventually turn around and walk back towards the car.

activity
Summerland KVR Trestle

Thirsty, we drop Porter and Merlot at home and grab our bikes and ride downtown to the newly opened Giant’s Head Brewing. We meet with Erik, the General Manager of Summerland’s newest brewery, and get an update on their family-run brewery. With a background as a chef, Erik tells us he’s always wanted to have a brewery, so when the opportunity came up, they jumped at it. Giant’s Head Brewing is located in the former Breakaway Brewing location, which was also previously a popular fish and chip shop called Cozy Bay Seafood.

The family and team renovated the space before reopening. It is welcoming and has a very homey feel. That’s what Erik tells us he wanted to create in this space which features a range of beers with something for everyone. They have a small but full kitchen including a pizza oven. Erik tells us they want to have easy and delicious food with simple ingredients everyone can decipher. Erik also gives us a preview of the 6 hL brewhouse and shows me where their new canning line from Cask will be installed. As we walk back to our table, he also points out where the new 24-seat patio will be going, once fully approved.

John and I decide to share an order of fish and chips, which pays homage to the previous Cozy Bay Seafood and a 3 meat heat stone baked pizza. Both meals are delicious. I also had a Razzle Dazzle, which both razzled and dazzled me. The smell of raspberries in this beer is enticing.

From here, it’s time to head back home refreshed and refueled with memories that will last a lifetime. As we start pedalling home, I’m already thinking about our next ale-venture.

brewery
Giant's Head Brewing Co, Summerland
restaurant
15 Park Bistro
#235 15 Park Pl, Osoyoos, BC
activity
Gyro Osoyoos Park
activity
Veterans Memorial Park
activity
Osoyoos Market on Main
8707 Main St, Osoyoos, BC
restaurant
JoJo’s Café
8316 Main St, Osoyoos, BC
activity
Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre
1000 Rancher Creek Rd, Osoyoos, BC
restaurant
La Marqueza Mexican Tacos & Market
8306 Main St, Osoyoos, BC
brewery
activity
Osoyoos Desert Centre
restaurant
Trading Post Eatery at the District Wine Village
cafe
activity
Skaha Lake Park
brewery
pub
Barley Mill Brew Pub
brewery
activity
SS Sicamous Heritage Park
activity
The Peach Ice Cream Shop
cafe
activity
cafe
activity
Little Tunnel
brewery
brewery
brewery
brewery
activity
Trout Creek Trestle
Kettle Valley Rail Trail, Summerland, BC

Produced In Collaboration With

Visit Penticton

Penticton, located in the heart of the beautiful Okanagan, is one of only two cities in the world that is situated between two lakes. Stake your spot at one of the many beaches or stroll down Main Street and take in the Penticton Farmers’ Market held Saturday mornings from late April to mid-October. Our friendly community offers something for everyone. Heart thumping mountain biking, rock climbing or hiking for that adventurous soul, or an easy going family bike-ride and a leisurely afternoon float down the iconic river channel. Just a 20 minute drive to over 5 breweries, 70 wineries and 3 distilleries, it’s no wonder Penticton means “a place to stay forever.”

Destination Osoyoos

When you visit Osoyoos, immerse yourself in our valley of stunning beauty with unlimited vistas awaiting you. But, there’s more to us than just bright skies and wineries set against gentle sloping hills.

Our friendly and intimate resort town, rich in Indigenous culture and colourful desert history, is also home to sophisticated resorts, championship golf courses, the nation’s warmest lake and a wide range of culinary and artistic experiences. Situated in Canada’s best wine region, Osoyoos is also an up-and-coming destination for craft beer, cider, and spirits alike. With our desert climate and welcoming community, discover why Osoyoos is Canada’s Warmest Welcome. Visit destinationosoyoos.com to learn more.

Oliver Tourism Association

at i kwu_swiwi_numtax, at i kwu_sukna qinx, at i axal Utmxwulalxw

“We are beautiful. We are Okanagan. It is because of our land.”

Syilx of the Okanagan Nation

Wine Capital of Canada ~ Oliver, British Columbia

Oliver is situated on the northernmost point of the Great Basin Desert. The diverse landscape includes a range from mountains to lakes. The endangered native grasslands, Sagebrush scrub, Ponderosa pine meadows, riparian and wetlands, create the perfect setting for hiking, bird watching and mountain biking.

Oliver’s rugged beauty is always on display – at harvest time or any time. Both sides of the valley have beautiful back roads that meander through orchards, scenic landscapes and thousands upon thousands of rows of lush vineyards cast in  golden light.

Follow us on social media!