Welcome to Osoyoos
You are about to experience a unique, vibrant community, in the heart of Desert Wine Country! The lifestyle that Osoyoos offers would be very difficult to duplicate elsewhere in Canada. Our semi-arid climate produces very hot, dry days in the summer and very mild days in the winter. Also, we boast the warmest freshwater lake in Canada.
Osoyoos is located in the south central interior of B.C., approximately 400 km East of Vancouver at the junction of Hwys 97 & 3 on the border of Washington State.
The name Osoyoos (O-sue-use) is an Okanagan Indian word meaning ‘the narrows’ or ‘the place where two lakes come together’.
Osoyoos is located in one of the most unusual geographical regions in Canada. The community lies in the shadow of the Cascade Mountains creating a hot, sunny, dry climate. For this reason, the area boasts its own climate zone called ‘Osoyoos Arid Biotic Zone.’ Canada’s lowest annual precipitation, warmest annual temperature, and warmest freshwater lake can be found here. This arid zone is the northern tip of the Sonoran Desert which extends from Mexico into Canada. It is biologically classified as Canada’s only desert because of the unique flora and fauna that call the area home.
Osoyoos receives an average annual rainfall of less than 318 mm (12 inches) and 2,039 hours of sunshine. Osoyoos Lake is Canada’s warmest freshwater lake. In July and August, water temperatures average 24°C (75°F). The lake stretches over 19 km (12 miles) of Canadian and United States territory; 14.7 km (5.7 square miles) on the Canadian side.
Average Hours of Sunshine: 2,039 hours
Average January High: 1°C / 32°F
Average July High: 29°C / 84°F
Average Annual Rainfall: 25 cm / 9.8 in
Average Annual Snowfall: 5.4 cm / 2.1 in
Local Area & Activities
Wineries & Vineyards – Osoyoos is known as ‘Desert Wine Country’ and with 20 plus wineries from Osoyoos to Oliver, each winery has its own unique characteristics. Make plans to tour some of the local wineries:
Nk’Mip Cellars Osoyoos (250) 495-2985
LaStella Vineyard Osoyoos (250) 495-8180
Twisted Tree Vineyards & Winery Osoyoos (250) 495-5161
Lakeside Cellars Osoyoos (250) 495-5810
Tinhorn Creek Vineyards Oliver (888) 484-6467 www.tinhorn.com
Hester Creek Estate Winery Ltd Oliver (250) 498-4435 www.hestercreek.com
Black Hills Estate Winery Oliver (250) 498-0666 www.blackhillswinery.com
Desert Hills Estate Winery Inc Oliver (250) 498-6664
Burrowing Owl Vineyards Oliver (250) 498-0620
Silver Sage Winery Oliver (250) 498-0310
Gehringer Bros Estate Winery Oliver (250) 498-3537
Jackson-Triggs Vintners Oliver (250) 498-4981 www.jacksontriggswinery.com
Osoyoos Lake – Osoyoos has an abundance of sandy beaches with shallow waters, perfect for toddlers. Be aware that the lake extends into Washington State; serious penalties will occur for crossing into US waters without border approval.
Mount Baldy Ski Area – 250-498-4086 www.skibaldy.com There are a variety of activities to choose from all year long. During the winter months check out the Terrain Park, or go tobogganing, skiing, snowboarding, snow shoeing, cross country skiing, or frisbee golfing. In the summer months this is a great place to picnic and hike.
Nk’mip Desert and Heritage Center – 1000 Rancher Creek Road Osoyoos 250-495-7901 Here you can learn about the living culture of the Okanagan people through tours, programs and interactive displays.
Osoyoos Desert Center – 250-495-2470 Located 9 km North of Osoyoos is an interactive interpretive education and research facility. Osoyoos is home to over 100 rare plants and over 300 rare invertebrates which you can learn about here.
Spotted Lake (Klikuk) – This major tourist attraction, located 9 km West of Osoyoos on HWY 3, has been a place of healing for the area’s First Nation’s people. The water contains one of the world’s highest concentrations of minerals, including Epsom salts, calcium, magnesium as well as other traces of minerals. They use the water to alleviate aches and pains. In the summer months the water evaporates and crystallizes making the white ringed spots visible from the highway.
Market on Main – Every Saturday morning from mid-May to Labour Day you will find local vendors offering a variety of local fruit and vegetables, baked goods and arts and crafts for sale.
Perfect Image Day Spa – 8521 Main Street Osoyoos 250-495-2119
Walking Trails: Osoyoos has a very unique environment which you can enjoy by taking a stroll on one of the many beautiful trails:
The Irrigation Canal Walkway – Located on 62nd Ave just North of Osoyoos Secondary School, this 5 km round trip trail ends at the Osoyoos Desert Center. In the early 20th century this used to be Osoyoos’ only water source. Today you will see that one side of the walkway remains in a natural state covered with sage and antelope brush, while orchards cover the landscape on the other side.
Lakeshore Walkway – The walkway winds north along the eastern shore of Lake Osoyoos and meets up with the Pioneer Walkway Trail in the downtown core. Walk the paved path to and from Downtown Osoyoos.
International Bicycling and Hiking Trail – Popular among dog owners, this 18.4 km trail consists of both paved and gravel sections, with parts of the trail wheel chair accessible. The International Trail is perfect for biking between many wineries in the area. The parking lot can be accessed on Road 22 off Hwy 97, eight km North of Osoyoos.
Haynes Point Wetlands Trail – Enjoy a nice nature walk on gravel, 1.5 km trail while you try to spot the different birds and other wildlife. This natural spit of land stretches out into the middle of a lake providing views of both Canada and the United States. This trail is a favorite for both nature lovers and bird watchers.
The Dog Beach – At Haynes Point Provincial Park, there is a section of beach marked off for the dogs to play.
Rattlesnake Canyon – 5502 Main Street, Osoyoos. 250-495-3544 This small theme park is great for children of all ages. Mini golf, bumper boats and go-karts, rock climbing and arcade games are just some of the activities you will find here. Fun for the whole family.
Anarchist Mountain Lookout – Located East of Osoyoos on Highway 3. From here you can see the Okanagan Valley, as well as part of Washington State. The climb takes you from 910 feet to 4,045 feet above sea level.
Bike and Boat Rentals – There are many marinas where you can rent a boat or other watercraft so you can have some fun out on the water.
Double ‘O’ Bikes – 8905 Main Street Osoyoos (250) 498-8348 www.doubleobikes.com Rent a bike to get yourself around town.
Starlite Marina & Beach Shop – 7906 Main Street Osoyoos 250-495-5240 Boat, Sea-doo, kayak and paddleboat rentals.
Safari Beach Marina – 5815 Oleander Drive Osoyoos 250-495-6868 Boat Rentals and Gas bar.
Wakepilot Wakeboarding – #59 Harbour Key Drive – 250-495-4195 www.wakepilot.com Wakeboarding, waterskiing, and other water sports & gear sales
Sunflight Parasailing – 250-495-3591#1 Park Place parasailing, wakeboarding, waterskiing
Indian Grove Riding Stables – 8000-45th Street 250-495-7555 At the Indian Grove Riding Stables, you can go for guided horseback riding tours in the morning, afternoon, or enjoy an all day trail ride through the desert.
Osoyoos offers two great golf courses:
Osoyoos Golf and Country Club – 12300 Golf Course Drive 250-495-3355 www.golfosoyoos.com Golf Course, Pro-Shop and Restaurant. Enjoy a competitive game of golf followed by refreshments on the deck of the clubhouse. The view is breathtaking. If you can’t run off for that long, you can also swing your clubs at the Desert Springs Par 3 course or the Golf Simulator at the Ridge Brewing Company Restaurant & Pub.
Sonora Dunes Golf Course – 1300 Rancher Creek Road (by Nk’Mip Resort) 250-495-GOLF (495-4653) www.sonoradunes.com Golf Course, Bar & Grill. Open year-round, dawn to dusk, 7 days a week. 9 hole Par 35. Sonora Dunes offers a tranquil setting with beautiful views or Osoyoos Lake and lush vineyards.
Osoyoos Desert Model Railroad – Buena Vista Industrial Park 11611 115th ST. Osoyoos, B.C. 250-495-6842 Come see the biggest little European Railroad in Canada. 3,500 square feet of family fun with more than 1,200 houses and over 9,000 hand painted miniature people. The Osoyoos Desert Model Railroad is Canada’s largest Marklin lay-out, with more than 20 computer controlled trains running through very detailed landscaping with European style towns and houses. Come step into a miniature fantasy world!