23 Winter Photos That Will Inspire You to Visit the Okanagan Valley
I just got back from two weeks in the Okanagan Valley where I spent the holidays with my family and reveled in the picturesque winter wonderland. It hardly ever snows where I live on the west coast, so being able to have a white Christmas here in the Okanagan was a treat, which I wholeheartedly enjoyed.
The Okanagan Valley, nicknamed Canada’s Napa Valley, is a 180 km long region in southern British Columbia characterized by it’s dry, sunny climate, and a lake country that attracts tourists looking to enjoy their summer vacations on white sandy beaches or exploring one of dozens of wineries.
Apart from the busy summer tourist season the Okanagan doesn’t really get that much attention throughout the rest of the year. It makes me a little sad really that most people don’t get to see the beauty found here during the colder months.
Having grown up in Penticton, a town in the center of the valley, I've experienced my fair share of winters here, but it always amazes me that most people don't enjoy this cold season as much as they could. A vacation doesn't always have to be palm trees and sunshine; some of my favorite 2015 destinations were in cooler climates!
Here are 23 beautiful photos to inspire you to visit the Okanagan in the winter!
Cold hands, Warm Hearts
It’s funny how many times I heard people complaining about how cold it was and how much they hate winter. I can understand that when driving conditions are far from ideal it can be a nerve wracking, white-knuckle experience getting from point A to B, but apart from hindering travelers I think winter is one of the most beautiful seasons.
There’s nothing like going for a snowy walk through a quiet forest, the snowflakes softly falling from the sky, and then returning home rosy cheeked eager to enjoy a steaming hot cup of coffee and some Christmas cookies.
If you’re planning a winter trip I truly urge you to consider coming to the Okanagan. You’ll benefit from off season hotel prices and so many cold weather activities it’ll make your head spin. This year I went ice fishing, snowshoeing, and sleigh riding – all firsts for me! You can also go skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling, cross country skiing, skating, hiking, and explore numerous ski resorts.
If you’re more into staying indoors and relaxing while the snow comes down outside, consider checking into Sparkling Hill Resort, where you can enjoy 5-star service, spa treatments, exquisite saunas and steam rooms, a heated outdoor pool, and dreamy views of the valley below.
The Views from Above
No matter how you travel to the Okanagan, be that by flying or driving, you'll be amazed at the views of the rolling mountains, valleys, and forests that seem to stretch on forever.
Whenever I fly in I always wish the flight would go on for a little bit longer because I can't take my eyes off the landscape. Be sure to reserve a window seat!
Fun in the Snow
It's easy to hear the words "winter in Canada" and envision igloos, sled dogs, and an endless barrage of blizzards and snow. I guess that's the popular stereotype, but it just isn't so. The Okanagan does have a lovely winter, but it never gets that cold.
In Penticton, where I grew up, the average winter temperature is around -5 C, perfect for bundling up and playing in the snow. This means packing lots of warm layers is a must when traveling to the Okanagan in the wintertime.
If you haven't considered the Okanagan as a winter destination before, I think it's high time you do. It's the perfect place in British Columbia to enjoy a quiet and beautiful winter full of plenty of exciting indoor and outdoor activities.