For many Western Canadians, a trip here is an annual rite of passage.
Located near the geographic centre of the Okanagan Valley, Kelowna’s reliable sunny weather and breezy lakeside vacation make it a favorite with campers throughout western Canada. Summer water sports like swimming, tubing, wakeboarding, wakesurfing, water skiing, and stand-up paddling are all on deck from sunrise to sunset. The town’s population swells in summer, but there’s room for everyone to spread out.
Waterfront campgrounds have been replaced by luxury hotels, but there are still a few places where you can roll up and camp on the shores of one of the region’s six lakes. you can often find a remote waterfront campsite by renting a motorboat or even a canoe early in the day.
Highway 97 is the valley’s main thoroughfare, but the narrow, twisty, and scenic Westside (or Fintry) Road leads to some of the region’s most secluded and picturesque campgrounds.
Dozens of small fishing lakes dot the forested Okanagan Highlands to the north and south of Kelowna. These private campgrounds and BC Forest Service sites are often located on gravel backroads—campers need to be completely self-sufficient.
July and August are the ‘hot months,’ both in terms of temperature and popularity. In late spring, the valley’s orchards are a riot of color thanks to blooming cherry and apple trees. Fall is harvest time, specifically for the hundreds of wineries that make Kelowna the “Napa Valley of the North.” The fall bounty is celebrated during the annual Okanagan Fall Wine Festival held each October. Campers in spring and fall should definitely pack puffy parkas for extra warmth on chilly nights.