10 Best Things To Do In Kelowna This Summer

Last Updated on February 1, 2023

Being outdoors is the best place to be this summer in Kelowna: beaches, lakes, mountains, thrilling water sports, outdoor adventure, orchards full of Canada’s best fruit, or exploring trails with dreamy views by bike or foot.  There are endless fun things to do in Kelowna during summer!

With so many incredible areas to explore in the Okanagan, Kelowna is a fantastic base for your Okanagan adventures. The bustling city is a great jumping-off point to also explore Peachland, Summerland, Penticton, and the resorts of Silver Star and Big White.

The Okanagan is known for its hot and dry temperatures; one of the best places in Canada to enjoy the warmth of the summer sun while staying cool close to water.

During your summer visit, expect temperatures to hit around 30 degrees C, with the possibility of temperatures rising even hotter. In the summer of 2021, temperatures soared during the heatwave, with temperatures reaching a high of almost 40 degrees C.

Kelowna is close enough to Vancouver that it makes the venture perfect for a weekend getaway.  Or, stay longer because there is plenty to explore during an extended trip.

It feels like there are endless things to see in Kelowna. After visiting a few times over the years, we have narrowed it down to the 10 best things to do in Kelowna during summer:

Table Of Contents

Bike the Myra Canyon Trestles

The Myra Canyon Trestles are one of the most scenic parts of the Kettle Valley Railway (KVR). These remains are an Icon of Canadian Railroad History.

The best way to explore the 18 trestles and two tunnels are by bike. You can also explore them on foot, but be mindful of how much extra time that will take you.

You will want to allow at least a half-day to explore Myra Canyon and its 12km path (24km round-trip) on a bike.

Hike Pincushion Mountain in Peachland

A quick thirty minutes from downtown Kelowna is a short but moderately challenging hike with incredible views. Showcasing beautiful Okanagan Lake and backdropped by Okanagan Mountain Provincial Park, you’ll find yourself surrounded by incredible beauty.

Pincushion Mountain is a rocky shoulder of Mt. Coldham. The mountain was named after a wildfire wiped out the mountain in the 19th century and left behind snags that looked like pins.

Expect several steep sections and loose gravel. Wear appropriate footwear and hiking sticks could be helpful, especially on the way down.

Allow two to two and a half hours for this 5km out and back hike.

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Cuddle Kangaroos at Kangaroo Creek Farm

When you first think of cuddling Kangaroos, surely British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley would not be your first thought of where you could meet these adoarble animals.

The Kangaroo Creek Farm in Kelowna is a great family-friendly place to get up close to Kangaroos and even cuddle some young Joey’s.

The farm features many animals, including Kangaroo, Bennet Wallaby, Wallaroo, Albina Wallaby, Sugar Gliders, Pit Bellied Pig, Emu, Parrot, Peacock, Goats, Fancy Chicken and Capybara.

For a more relaxed and less busy visit, avoid holidays and weekends, and arrive for opening.

Hike Knox Mountain Park

Several hiking and biking trails, opportunities to spot wildlife, and gorgeous views make Knox Mountain a great adventure in Kelowna. It is a popular spot to see deer during your hike.

Paul’s Tomb, Ogopogo, Pavilion, and Apex is a 6.9 kilometer heavily trafficked loop trail. You will enjoy incredible views throughout; the views are worth the hard work.

This is also a popular and gorgeous spot to watch the sunset.

Enjoy Okanagan Lake

Okanagan Lake is the largest in a chain of ancient fjord lakes. At 135 kilometers long and 232 meters at its deepest point, there are several perfect locations to launch your SUP or kayak to connect with the natural beauty of the area, go for a swim, or enjoy a picnic.

There are over 30 beaches in Kelowna along Okanagan Lake, with five of the most popular beaches in Kelowna being Hot Sands Beach, Boyce-Gyro Beach, Rotary Beach, Sarson’s Beach, and Strathcona Park.

The lake provides a huge playground for the seemingly endless variety of watersports available. Experience an adrenaline rush as you learn to flyboard, fly through the sky for a parasailing adventure, or rent a Sea-Doo jet ski to rip around. Most of Kelowna’s parks feature sandy beaches and several have watersport rentals available.

Learn How to Flyboard

Flyboarding is a fast-emerging watersport. Like anything else, flyboarding will take some practice to improve your skills and to be able to start to attempt tricks. You will have to be comfortable with balancing on the board before you can attempt anything further.

You will not be learning tricks when you are fresh on the board for your first half-hour session. Flyboarding is, however, a lot easier than it looks. Most people who try are able to get up and hover above the water during their first lesson.

Flyboarding is quite intuitive. It takes a few minutes to get a grip on what you need to do to get into the air, but once you get a feel for it, you will know what you need to do.

Wine Tasting at Local Wineries and Vineyards

The Okanagan is recognized as one of the best places in the world for wine. Some of the best wines come from the interior of British Columbia, in the Okanagan Valley. It is becoming so popular, that it is now referred to as “Napa North”.

Kelowna is a wonderful area to enjoy tastings of internationally award-winning wines, especially while enjoying the experience at some of the best winery restaurants in the world. Kelowna is well-known for its crisp whites, complex reds, and its growing number of organic winemakers.

There are over 40 wineries in Kelowna, with the vineyards, orchards, and farms only minutes away from the bustling lakeside city.

You can go on a self-guided wine tour, using the Wine Trail Guide prepared by Tourism Kelowna, or book one of many guided wine tours.

Have the kids with you? Don’t worry! There are plenty of family-friendly wineries.  During a wine tasting at Mission Hill Winery, the kids were given a glass of sparkling juice. It was just as much fun for the kids as it was for us! Mission Hill is one of western Canada’s showcase wineries.

Explore Kelowna’s Downtown Marina

The Kelowna Downtown Marina and public pier is great for summertime entertainment. With shops and restaurants, it is a great bustling spot to enjoy a sunny day. The Marina offers temporary moorage, sea-doo and boat rentals, a marine fuel station. This is also where you will find access to every watersport tour you can dream of, like learning how to Flyboard. If you’re looking for something less daring, grab a paddle board rental, or have an afternoon of fun on the inflatable and unique water park in City Park, which is a short walk from the Marina.

Stroll Through City Park

City Park is the place to be for a comfortable day to spend lakeside, with plenty of amenities to keep everyone and anyone happy. Get a pass for the inflatable water park, go for a swim, enjoy the sandy beach, or relax in your own personal inflatable.

City Park is also a great location to go for a walk, between the beach and marina, or to find a spot to sit and enjoy the gorgeous scenery.

Have Fun With the Legend of Ogopogo

A trip to Kelowna would not be complete without a little search for the legendary Ogopogo, a sea monster that is said to reside in Okanagan Lake.

Thousands of years ago, the Interior Salish First Nation people spoke of N’ha-a-itk, the spirit of the lake. Over the years the stories were transformed into that of a creature, that is today known as Ogopogo.

Sightings continue to keep this legend alive.

To see Ogopogo for yourself, stop by the statue on Bernard Avenue near Kelowna’s City Park.

 

 

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