13 Best Things to Do in Penticton, BC: Beaches, Hiking, History, Dining, and More

Penticton is where both the hot summer and dry winter team up to promote a wide range of outdoor activities within a compact footprint. Compassing only 16.25 square miles of land, Penticton is a beautiful getaway sandwiched between Lake Okanagan and Skaha Lake, where the vineyards and orchards exist by the scenic trails and adrenaline-fueled theme parks.

Ringing true to its meaning as “a place to stay forever”, Penticton is an amusing nature-filled city where travelers of all ages can find something they love. Lazing around on a sand beach, conquering an exhilarating ride, launching a canoe, or drifting lazily on an inner tube down a river channel, Penticton has a lot more to offer to complete your vacation.

Without further ado, read on to find your favourite activities from this list of the best things to do in Penticton.

1. Relax at a Beach

Photo credit: kellymansonart

The easiest way to soak in the beauty of Penticton nature is hitting one of its best beaches. 

At the southern tip of the Okanagan Lake, the namesake beach is the most famous destination with a gorgeous, sun-kissed sandy shore. It hosts plenty of family-friendly activities surrounding the shallow, easy-entry water. Kiddos love to plunge into the designated swimming area and tackle the slides while parents like to chill by the floating docks for some downtime.

Skaha is another stellar beach just a stone’s throw away from Okanagan Lake Beach and dubbed as one of the best beaches in Canada. Skaha has its own namesake park enclosing a shallow, sandy beach chock full of children’s water slides, a marina, a boat launch area, and a floating dock to wind down.

Last but not least, Three Mile Beach’s claim to fame is a small piece of naked paradise. This clothing-optional beach is split in two, one for swimming and the other one for day moorage boating. The tranquil setting is brought about by the turquoise water overlooking the rugged mountains from afar.

2. Conquer the LocoLanding Adventure Park

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LocoLanding emerges as an all-time favorite summer paradise for local families. Loaded with a range of speedy go-karts, ridiculously fun little wet bumper boats, a mini-golf course, an Aeroball course, and high-level ropes, Loco Landing has something for everyone. 

To conquer all the zones in the park, you need the whole day. If you come with teens who like to do something more on an adventurous side, head to the outdoor climbing wall or hit the blow-up American Ninja style course to game up their skills. Once your core is tired, rest up at its canteen and recharge.

Admission Rate: CAD 5.50 – CAD 12/adult.
Hours of Operation: check the latest operating hours here.

Address: 75 Riverside Dr, Penticton, BC V2A 9A7.

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3. Take Your Kids to Wibit Wibit The Evolution Of Waterplay

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Teaming up with the LocalLanding Adventure Park nearby, Wibit is another big hook for the kiddos who like to jump, slide, make some splash, and swim in the mighty river. A gigantic floating playground is the limelight of the site, fully equipped with climbing walls, monkey bars, trampolines, and many more to give you an adrenaline-pumping day. 

Wibit Waterpark is great for all ages from 5 and above. Lifeguards are on duty and life jackets must be worn at all times. Come over and sign up as they give you a wristband with a fee to enjoy for the whole day. Meanwhile, parents can wind down on one of the beach chairs to watch their kids.

Admission Rate: CAD 28/two hours.
Hours of Operation: 10 am – 8 pm.

Address: 1010 Lakeshore Dr, Penticton, BC V2A 1B7.

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4. Go Rock Climbing at Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park

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Take on this world-class climbing opportunity at Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park dubbed as one of the most incredible places to climb in all of Canada. The park is located south of Penticton with 66 crags and over 1000 climbs can be found in three main canyons. While most of the climbs are sports routes, there are a few options for traditional climbing to break the sweat and enjoy the warm climate of southern Okanagan.

If you’d rather stay on the ground, Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park has an extensive network of well-groomed trails to work your core and soak in the wildlife abundance here. Some bighorn sheep, fringed and small-footed bats are residing in this magnificent wilderness.

Address: Access is from Lakeside Road to Smythe Road up along Gillies Creek.


5. Pick Your Own Fruit at an Orchard

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With the warm weather and a prime growing condition, Penticton – as part of the Okanagan area – is a stellar choice to take your family out for a meaningful farming opportunity. There are plenty of U-Pick farms around the town offering seasonal fresh fruit such as apples, cherries, peaches, apricots, plums, and pears.

The best place to engage and have a hand in the harvest is the Hillside Orchards, an expansive farm with over 20 acres filled with sustainable orchards and gardens. From the juicy peaches and ripe cherries to fresh vegetables, Hillside Orchards is ready to inject your weekend with lots of fun.

If you like to spend a little longer to enjoy everything Hillside has to offer, book one of the family rooms or pitch a tent on the site. Call it a day by the fire pit looking up at the stars before heading back into a fancy and fluffy bed to snuggle in.

6. Take a Leisure Stroll at Ikeda Japanese Garden

Photo: amoonda_starlitt

Every year when April and May are around the corner, Ikeda Japanese Garden comes alive, abound with a rich floral display to treat your eyesight and relax. This thriving and amusing Japanese garden is on the lesser-known side when it comes to the best places to see in Penticton, but if you’re already there, you never want to leave. 

It’s simply a beautiful, nature-filled garden to cleanse your mind and take your kids out for a walk. The idyllic Ikeda garden is located next to the Penticton Art Gallery with lots of parking spaces. The curving pathway skirts around a large Koi fish pond with benches around to rest your legs. Just remember to not feed the Koi fish and you can also take your pooch with you on a leash for a dreamy walk.

Admission Rate: donation-based.
Hours of Operation: 24 hours

Address: 199 Marina Way, Penticton, BC V2A 1H5.


7. Embrace History at SS Sicamous Museum & Heritage Park

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Even though Penticton goes by its thriving nature with lots of orchards, beaches, and gardens springing up throughout, history still plays a big part here. Get to the SS Sicamous Museum & Heritage Park to observe the sternwheeler that was once used to transport passengers and cargo to locations all along the shores of Okanagan lake back in 1915.

The early 20th century was the heyday of SS Sicamous as it was considered a fancy voyage serving the locals. Its journey ended in 1951 and today, the sternwheeler is still perfectly preserved as a museum for public visit.

Address: 1099 Lakeshore Dr W, Penticton, BC V2A 1B7.

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8. Float Down the Penticton River Channel

Photo credit: coyotecruises

How to maximize the fun while sticking to a lay schedule? Well, bring your tubes to the 4-mile-long Penticton Channel for hours of relaxing fun with a scenic vista in every direction. This classic outdoor leisure has become a norm for local families. Float down or raft down on a tube from Skaha Lake to Okanagan Lake and end it with a hearty BBQ feast at the end of the journey. If you don’t have your own tube, rent one with the Coyote Cruises bus with a fee after enjoying their ride.

Rental Rates:

  • Tube + Bus: $18/person.
  • Quad + Bus: $25/person.

Hours of Operation: Last tube leaves the Coyote Den at 5PM. Last shuttle pick up is 7PM.

Address: 215 Riverside Drive, Penticton BC V2A8M2

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9. Hike the Scenic Trails

Photo credit: yyfpenticton

When the sun is shining and the air is crisp, put your shoes on to tackle one of the best hikes in Penticton, cross over the rugged hills through the sparkling lakes and pass the lush vineyards. 

For beginners, start with the Munson Mountain Trail. Recognized in 2016 as one of Canada’s Historic Places, Munson Mountain is easily accessible from the city core and takes you to some gorgeous views of the lakes and mountains.

Penticton Creek Loop, combining two smaller trails in Penticton’s urban trails, is a great hike to game up your skill with a wonderful elevated view of Penticton before you’re confident enough to conquer the Kettle Valley Trail.

Kettle Valley Trail, known as KVT for short, is part of the Trans Canada Trail. Therefore, its claim to fame is one of the longest networks of multi-use recreational trails in the world. It passes through Penticton with the name McCulloch Trestle which takes about 5 km for a round-trip.

10. Hit up a Local Craft Brewery

Photo credit: thetinwhistle

The Okanagan Valley is known for wines, and everyone knows that. But do you realize that Penticton is also the pioneer of the Okanagan craft beer scene for more than 25 years? The number of local craft breweries isn’t insanely big. Eight craft breweries have been contributing to the craft beer industry of Penticton and still going strong with new energy, innovation, and authenticity to inspire your taste buds. 

It’s easy to visit five different breweries within a short walk around the downtown core. From traditional heavyweights such as Tin Whistle Brewery and the Barley Mill Brewpub to new players like Cannery Brewing and Bad Tattoo, there’s always something for everyone.

But beers alone aren’t enough to bring your exploration to a new realm! Pick some from these 12 best restaurants in Penticton each day you go out to make sure you don’t miss out on anything. From unique Sushi places to heartwarming Turkish food, we’ve got you covered!

11. Explore and Shop at District Wine Village

Photo credit: districtwinevillage

Penticton Wine District is a new attraction launched in town where there is a mashup of 13 local wineries gathering to promote their blends to wine lovers. This is a great place to go for some wine tasting or simply hang out with your friends and do some wine shopping if you don’t want to be part of a winery tour.

The beautiful, modern concept of architecture contributes to the shopping experience with a diversity of wines from local winemakers. In front of every store, they set out a group of seats to wind down and sip on your nectar of God and appreciate the artisan production and craftsmanship. There is also an on-site vineyard, a brewery, and an eatery all leaning against a dramatic backdrop of mountains.

Hours of Operation: 11 am- 6 pm.

Address: 100 Enterprise Way, Oliver, BC V0H 1T0.

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12. Enjoy the Winter Activities

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From mid-November to mid-February, winter sweeps through Penticton with dry, cold weather and an average temperature hovering around 43°F. This is the perfect time for classic winter sports to come alive. Apex Ski Resort’s Skating Loop is a short drive away, boasting a wide range of fun in old-fashioned winter magic where you can glide through a cathedral of snowy trees.

Looking for something unique to do? Hoodoo Adventures is a winter climbing opportunity or you can swear by Kahtoola Microspikes for winter hiking on snowy trails. Those who like to take it slow can spend a day snowshoeing up the Carmi Road and Nickel Plate Nordic Center near Apex.

13. Shop til’ You Drop at the Main Shopping Streets

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Wrap up your bucket list of the best things to do in Penticton with a shopping spree. Get your credit card at the ready before setting out to local boutiques for some perfect keepsakes. Penticton does not have a large footprint. The main, bustling business community takes over the downtown core. 

Head to the vibrant Front Street to immerse into its collection of stores, galleries, and outdoor patios. The Main Street area nearby is also chock full of artisanal gifts, handmade keepsakes, and curated products. Nestled by the side of each bespoke store are a range of coffee shops, bakeries, and local curiosities to complete your retail therapy. 

Or if you’d rather find a place where everything you need is tucked under one roof to save time from all the walking, head to Cherry Lane Shopping Center and surprise yourself. The local mall is home to a heap of anchor stores such as Hudson’s Bay, Northern Reflection, and Arrow Lifestyle, as well as many jewelry and gift shops.

A 45-minute drive north of Penticton, Kelowna is a hub of sparkling lakes and endless vineyards. It shares many traits in common and is easy to get to from Penticton.

But before venturing out, consult these curated guides to Kelowna to come prepared.