I cannot believe the summer is almost over! I feel like we haven’t done so much yet! We want to travel more, to garden more, and just simply extend those beautiful sunny and hot days for longer! Are you with me and agree that time is flying too fast? So, it is back to school in a couple of weeks (in Canada), and we haven’t traveled anywhere farther than an hour drive from home this summer yet. There are quite a few reasons to it, and the main one is money. We have been trying to get back on track with our budget and expenditures as we have had a few unexpected expenses hitting us this year. Well, actually one was sort of semi-planned, but it still had gone over our budget. Anyway, we love traveling. And we love driving (believe it or not, but we do argue about who will be driving when we get into the car ;)). So, we thought we should go ahead and visit Osoyoos. Here is how we found the city and our list of things to do in Osoyoos 🙂
Beautiful British Columbia
Yes, it is actually a slogan for the province. The phrase appears on the licence plates and used ubiquitously. And it is truly a beautiful province! The landscape and climates differ from place to place. You can find forests, mountains, lakes, creeks, an ocean, and even a desert – all in one province!
Being a home to mature forests comes with a downside: wildfires. This year has been especially hard on so many places. You can tell how smoky it is as all of our pictures are “foggy”. Just to show what it could be like here are some before and after the wildfires pictures:
It is sad…
As of August 10, 2017, the Canadian firefighteers (alongside with international aid) are still fighting a few wildfires, but it is getting better. And the air quality was not too bad when we were there.
Anyway, BC is the home to 14 resort municipalities and Osoyoos is one of them. The city located in the Canadian desert and many times referred to as Canadian Vegas! It has beautiful hiking trails, great golfing courses, gorgeous wineries and the warmest lake in Canada. Even if you are not interested in wineries, you will be impressed by the beautiful grape farms located all around the city! And the orchards!…. Mmmmm… Peaches, apples, apricots, cherries (red and yellow), pears! They are all so DELICIOUS! Of course, we could not resist and had bought lots of fruit on our way home. The yellow watermelon tastes awesome and is so juicy!
We have been making some jams and I will be sharing recipes soon! Stay tuned 🙂
The Osoyoos Lake
As in many other cities, summer activities in Osoyoos are different from what you can do there in winter. We are yet to explore the winter city 🙂 But we are in love with the summer one! The weather was just perfect! Hot and dry. The water in the lake was perfectly warm for my hubby and Alan, but it was still a bit cold for me. I am not a good example though as I can be cold in summer too (here should come a blushing emoji :)) There were lots of people swimming in the lake there as well boating, kayaking, and waterskiing.
Alan was trying to feed the seagulls off hand… He thought they would similar to the Steller’s Jays we saw in the Manning Park last summer. We had to warn him as the seagulls might not be as gentle as the Steller’s Jays…
Speaking of the birds and other fauna of the area.
Beware of the rattle snakes in the desert
This is the sign placed by the Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre. They are doing a great job there trying to protect the snakes. We had met a group of the biologists who found a snake on the trail there and then released it into the remote from the trails area. Alan got very excited about it and was hoping to see more snakes while we were walking there. I was happy we did not meet any.. Hehe..
Here is a picture of another creature living on the tree there and the results of its “hard work”. I honestly don’t want to know what kind of a spider created that web…
Though we found the admission fee to be a bit high ($38 for a family admission), we really enjoyed the guided tour and the movie there. We find it fascinating to learn more about the indigenous people, their culture and traditions.
Fauna and flora, or flora and fauna 🙂
As gardening enthusiasts, we can’t talk about Osoyoos and not show you the plants growing there. As I have mentioned above, it is a desert. What would be growing in the wild desert?
You got it right: cactuses and succulents!
Aren’t they beautiful?! Alan was thrilled to check out the cactuses’ spikes!
Can you see a growing gardener in him? 🙂
And a few more pictures of the beautiful plants 🙂 I don’t know the names of these, so if you could help me identify them, that would be greatly appreciated!
I think the guide has mentioned during the tour that the plant on the left (below) is a kind of a sage. Its smell is really strong and the plant is used for medicinal purposes.
Another beautiful plant is the Canadian Thistle. It is on the list of the BC invasive species, but its flowers are so beautiful. Do you agree it is cute?
And a pine.
Nk’Mip people use its long needles to make (weave) baskets.
The views there are breathtaking… The pictures cannot express what it looks and feels like…
Other things to do in Osoyoos
We did not end up going there, but it is definitely on our list of things to do in Osoyoos! BTW, do you see how the colours/skies are different on this picture? This is how beautiful it is there when it is not smoky!
Because we only went there for 1.5 days, we did not go for a winery tour. But if wine-making is your thing, you have so many to choose from!
We don’t play golf (this is also on our list of things to try :)), but there are 2 golf clubs for you in Osoyoos:
Osoyoos Golf Club, and
are crazy love gardening, we wanted to explore the farms in the area, so we drove to Oliver and almost to Penticton just to look at some orchards and farms in the area. The scenery is amazing there and so different… So unusual.
Working through the pictures, we had realized that we did not take even a picture of a farm… I guess we were so busy/stunned by the orchards, we just forgot we had a camera on us…
Just a few more pictures of the Osoyoos Lake.
The sun was greeting us nicely in the morning
We feel like we have to go back soon, when the smoke is gone, to see how it looks like when the horizon is clear…
We now have added another favourite destination to our list. Hope you like it too.
What is your favourite place to go in your country? How often to do you visit there?