Kelowna winter’s are a perfect mix of snow and sunshine, while not being too unbearably cold. Surrounded by mountains and valleys, it’s a great place to go snowshoeing in the wilderness or spend time perusing the local restaurants and lakefront. Kelowna really does have it all! Below, you’ll find 5 things that we love to do in the Kelowna winter.
Telemark Nordic Club: Snowshoeing & Skiing
This is one of our favourite places to spend time at during the winter in Kelowna. Located just on the other side of the bridge from downtown in West Kelowna. About a 35-40 minute drive from downtown up Crystal Mountain, you’ll find the Telemark Nordic Club.
The roads are paved up until the parking lots and are typically well maintained meaning that most vehicles can make the trek!
After arriving, you will find a short path leading to the lodge where you can rent snowshoes for $13 or cross-country skis for $26 (prices less for children). Grab one of the trail maps and choose between 16 different trails to explore! We recommend Panorama Ridge.
These trails vary between “easy” and “most difficult” and can most certainly be kid friendly. If you make it early (and if you’re lucky enough) you may get to see some wildlife as well. Once you’re finished, be sure to grab a coffee and a snack form the lodge.
Sledding on Crystal Mountain
Just past the Telemark Nordic Club on Crystal Mountain, you’ll find a great little area for sledding, snowboarding or if you’re like Nick, snow-skating!
As well as all of those fun outdoor activities, you can find fire pits along the not-so-busy roadside to have a fire and enjoy the warmth surrounded by tons of snow. Please note: past the Nordic Club, the road turns into gravel and is not well maintained so we certainly recommend tire chains as there will be lots of snow. Be sure to bring your own wood – or at least an axe, so you can hike some trails and find some small logs to chop and bring to the fire pits with you.
This is a great mountain to bring your family and friends to get away from the city and really immerse yourself in a true Canadian winter!
Hiking at Knox Mountain Park: The heart of Kelowna
We can’t say enough about how cool this mountain is, as its nestled right in the middle of downtown Kelowna! There are plenty of hikes in the mountains surrounding the city but this one is, in our opinion, one of the most beautiful.
Knox mountain is a fantastic location for those who may not have a vehicle and want to experience both downtown and a snowy mountain whilst in the city. The city surrounds the south and east sides of the mountain with the gorgeous Okanagan lake lining the north and west.
There is a drivable road going the majority of the way up but throughout the winter months this is not maintained therefore it is closed. With 7 moderate trails ranging from 2.4 kilometres to 12.5 kilometres in length this is a fantastic place to take a gentle walk along the lake, or really get those steps in with a challenging hike.
Knox Mountain offers variety for all difficulties and ages.
Warm up with a vegan hot chocolate at Naked Cafe
This cute little vegan cafe has a tasty menu filled with bowls, burgers, poutines, desserts and even cocktails, Naked Cafe is a a definite must try during your trip to Kelowna!
We recommend the feature poutine and the Bahn Mi. This downtown Kelowna gem will be sure to impress even your meat-eating friends. Pop by to warm up with a vegan peppermint hot chocolate and thank us later.
Myra Canyon Park & Myra Canyon Trestles
A Kelowna classic! This is a great spot to bring your family or dog and take a beautiful winter hike through the snow capped trees before circling back to the parking lot. If you’re looking for a longer hike, you can take the trestles trail which is a 12 kilometre long trail featuring 18 Instagram worthy trestle bridges used for the KVR Cycling Company. Don’t worry, this section of the heritage site is no longer in use so you won’t run into any stand-by-me-style train predicaments!
If the hike is too long for you but you still want to see some trestle bridges, there’s always an option of driving up Little White Mountain to enjoy the view of the gorgeous escarpment with Okanagan lake peeking out in the background. Just make sure to bring your tire chains as this road is not plowed and will be curvy and slick on the drive up!
We hope that you find Kelowna as enjoyable in the winter as you would in the summer time! For anybody wondering if it’s worth coming even though it’s winter or snowing, we can assure you that it absolutely is!