Penticton Travel Guide, British Columbia
Located 68km S of Kelowna in the beautiful Okanagan Valley, Penticton is one of British Columbia’s most beautiful midsize cities with a stunning position between two lakes, Okanagan Lake and Skaha Lake. The two lakefronts are totally different and situated in different parts of the city. Okanagan Lake is to the north and Skaha Lake to the south and with Okanagan River cutting between the two you can really feel like you are in a kind of oasis. Besides lakes the nice orchards around the city where apples, peaches, cherries, and grapes are produced enhances the beauty of the place.
Because of its location Penticton enjoys a mild climate offered by the protective west coast mountain range. This climate makes the region a perfect place for outdoor activities all year long and people do enjoy coming here. The city is more like a resort that offers numerous recreational opportunities for everybody.
Besides its beautiful surroundings offering all types of outdoor activities, the city has something to offer too. A nice stroll along Main Street will give you a hint on what the city is about. You’ll be able to see the old commercial center here. Downtown in very vivid and a lot of action goes on especially on colorful Front Street lined with funky shops, fine restaurants, galleries and bookstores. One bookstore really worth visiting is the renowned second hand bookstore.
Another just as busy part of downtown is Lakeshore Drive, a boulevard facing the beachfront of Okanagan Lake. This is the most populated street in summer as here come both those who want to absorb some sun and those who want to have some delicious meals at one of the many restaurants that line the boulevard.
The city’s strong point is its location that ranks among the best and there are few cities that can beat it. It and for this reason tourism has developed real nicely in the area. Summer is the peak season when tourists flock to the city for a nice holiday. They mostly come to sunbathe and for the water sports activities. Renting of watercraft is possible at Pier Water Sports. But there are other activities to choose from like beach volleyball or climbing. Climbing is at its best here with one of the greatest location for this type of activity with wonderful views and great flora and fauna. If you’re not a climber but fee attracted you can learn here at Western Canada’s largest rock climbing school.
The beachfront is a favored place for families with kids as they love to play in the sand and build castles. They love the beach along Skaha Lake as it is more secluded and there’s also a large water park for the kids.
One of the most relaxing activities besides sunbathing and watching people go by is strolling along the beachfront promenade. You’ll have plenty to see. There’s the SS Sicamous an old sternwheeler set right on the sand and it is preserved as a museum. Inside you’ll be able o see a scale model of the historic Kettle Valley Railway. If you want to see part of Kettle Valley Railway that remained intact you can take a 2-hour journey on a 16km section of the original track, but you will have to go a few miles north of the city.
If you’re not tired of visiting, go on with the Art Gallery of the South Okanagan located at the eastern end of the beachfront. It is a good place to buy souvenirs.
The city offers other types of entertaining possibilities especially if you happen to be around for the festivals. The Penticton Peach Festival and the Okanagan Wine Festival are well known and attract many visitors. The first is held in the first week of August and the second during late September. Fun is guaranteed at both events and tasting is part of it. Savor delicious fruit and different types of wine like chardonnay, pinot noir and merlot.Whatever your budget or style, you will find in Penticton the culture, urban amenities, outdoor experiences and spectacular natural beauty to make your next vacation truly unforgettable.
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