British Columbia Travel Guide
The unofficial BC Travel & Tourism Guide

Photo: Josep Penella
Leisure summer activities are a large draw to this rare ecological ‘arid zone’, which happens to be one of the last northern sections of the Sonoran Desert that runs between Mexico and Canada. Camping, water skiing, lawn bowling, sailing, golfing and beaching along the shores of BC's warmest lake take centre stage to travelers during the months of June through to (late) August. Year round, there is very little need for an umbrella. The area is guarded by the Cascade Mountains and rarely sees much rain.

Markets are full of the wide range of fruits, more so, then the rest of the region Osoyoos is part of, the Southern Okanagan (this area happens to be a large source of fruit for British Columbia). The second biggest attraction, in this well sheltered community, would be the two crystal blue lakes, which continue to draw tourists, retirees, sporting and recreational enthusiasts who adore traveling British Columbia.

By road, Osoyoos is only four and one half hours from Vancouver and is only sixty-seven kilometers from the Penticton airport. If traveling from the United States, Osoyoos is only five minutes to the boarder.

Population: 4,600

Swimming in British Columbia’s warmest lake
Nk'Mip Desert & Heritage Centre
Galleries and Boutique Shopping
Irrigation Canal Walkway - 5km round trip trail
Pioneer walkway along the waterfront
The smallest town museum in British Columbia ‘The Osoyoos Museum’
The many wineries that can be visited daily
Osoyoos Desert Centre - The unique vegetation and wildlife sightings that are not found anywhere else in Canada. (Don’t be surprised to find little critters out in the desert like turtles, toads or lizards and some famous desert classic moments as tumble weed or dry “brush” blows by.)
Osoyoos Lake Oxbows - the perfect place for birdwatching
International Bicycling and Hiking Trail
White Lake Observatory
Sunrise Cactus Gardens
Vaseaux Lake Wildlife Centre - birdwatching highlight
Mt. Kobau - breath taking views of the Okanagan Valley
Osoyoos Museum - 15,000 square feet of exhibit space
The Grist Mill - pioneering journey back in time, water wheel and mill tour.
Hedley Museum - mining family historic site
Year Round Festivals and Events

Things To Bring:
Caution: Do not approach any snakes or rattle snakes.

The name Osoyoos originated as the First Nations (Indian) word meaning “the place where two lakes come together”.

There were few inhabitants in the area now known as Osoyoos from 1066 to the 1800’s. The First Nations tribal members, which did pass through here, were Nomadic. Only a few local caves share the tale of the lives of those on their journeys through this rare ecological ‘arid zone’. It is a one of the last northern sections of the Sonoran Desert that runs between Mexico and Canada.

However, it wasn’t until the time of the gold rush that this area beyond the Kootenays became settled with cattle and horse ranches and was used as a key part of the fur trading route.

Today, the industry here is mostly agricultural due to the climate and weather’s perfect growing conditions. The most uncommon harvest would be the banana plantations in Osoyoos, a fruit that is grown nowhere else in Canada.

Summer average 26 degrees Celsius (arid zone)
Winter average -5 degrees Celsius (temperatures vary at different elevations)


Osoyoos Accommodations

Osoyoos Things to Do