Who doesn’t love great wine, delicious cuisine and stunning scenery? Often, visitors to British Columbia are drawn to the Rockies, Whistler or Vancouver (to name a few!) and aren’t aware of, or just don’t make it out to, BC’s interior wine region. Okanagan Valley wineries have won major international awards and are set against sun, sparkling lakes and sandy beaches. If you’re a wine lover and have yet to visit the Okanagan, get it on your bucket list!
About 4 scenic hours from Vancouver by car, or a 50 minute flight, the Okanagan is great to visit year round. Lakes and sun in the summer, fantastic skiing in the winter, wine festivals in the spring and fall and festivals and wine tours all year long. Having lived there myself, I could write dozens of articles on what there is to do in and around the Okanagan, but this time it’s all about the wine!
The Okanagan is the most important agriculture region in BC and the second largest producer wine in Canada. It’s a gorgeous, laid back drive along the valley – so much lake view the whole way and lots of places to stop, shop, eat, relax, hang out, really whatever you want to do. There are 174 licensed wineries (from large world-class operations to small boutique) in the Okanagan valley so how to choose? HERE is a nice listing of Okanagan wineries broken down by region.
There are many beautiful places to stay. As we like to talk about RVing, here are some provincial park, campground and RV resort resources for you:
You can always plan your own wine tour but if you’re looking for some suggestions to save time and get you started, here is our list of 12 tour operators, itinerary ideas and a few really fun, unique options for you! It’s super easy to mix and match from the ideas below and create your own tour!
- Experience Wine Tours
- Canadream (Okanagan Wine Tour Trip Planner)
- Vines and Views
- Roots and Vines Tours
- Uncorked Okanagan
- Bare Wine Tours
- OK Wineshuttle
- Wicked Wine Tours
- Wine Your Way
- Vintage Wine Tours – get driven from winery to winery in a red 1956 Cadillac Sedan de Ville
- OK Wine Tours
- Tourism Kelowna – check out this list of 7 crazy fun, unique ways to wine tour
And of course with wine, food completes the experience! Many wineries have a restaurant or bistro for a fantastic culinary experience or shops with local artisan creations. Two of my personal favourites are Quails Gate (amazing food overlooking Lake Okanagan – stunning!) and Summerhill (I once saw Chantal Kreviazuk in concert here – sipping wine watching her play piano against a Lake Okanagan backdrop…it was amazing).
If you’ve done an Okanagan Wine Tour (extra points if you were travelling by RV) or just want to share your favourite experience, we’d love to hear from you!