is located 80 km (50 miles) south of Kamloops
and 110 km (68 miles) north of Hope
on the Coquihalla Hwy 5. Merritt is situated in the beautiful Nicola
Valley - one of British Columbia's major ranching and cattle areas
since the late 1800's.
Music Capital of Canada"
Merritt has the honour of being called the "Country Music Capital
of Canada." Every year country music is celebrated with Merritt's
Walk of Stars.
Walk of Stars
If you are a music fan or just love public displays make sure you
look at Merritt's Walk of Stars. A collection of signatures and
handprints taken from some of Country Music's top performers while
performing at the Merritt Mountain Music Fest have been imprinted
throughout the sidewalks in town.
lake a day as long as you stay"
The Nicola Valley is also very famous for fishing offering you at
least 200 lakes in the immediate area. The motto in this region
is, "A lake a day as long as you stay."
If you have a good vehicle and don't mind a short drive, the Pennask
Lake is a real treat. Please make sure you follow the directions
from Merritt to Pennask Lake closely or go in by Headwater Lakes
Road via Peachland.
One lake close by Nicola Lake has reported 26 species of fish existing
in the lake with large-size Rainbow trout and Kokanee being caught
regularly. Other sure fishing lakes located south of Merritt on
Hwy 5A include Harmon, Corbett, Courtney and the Kane Valley Lakes.
Things for you to see in Merritt include the Nicola Valley Museum
on Jackson Avenue and the historic Baillie House, built in 1908.
Merritt and the Nicola Valley have had a long proud ranching history
in the settlement of British Columbia's heartland. To experience
and live this past you have to view both the Coldwater Hotel and
the Quilchena Hotel.
Coldwater and Quilchena Hotels
The Coldwater Hotel, built in 1909, is located at the corner of
Quilchena Avenue and Voght Street in Merritt. The Quilchena Hotel,
operating since 1908, is located in the small settlement of Quilchena.
Quilchena is situated on the east shore of Nicola Lake, 20 km (12.5
miles) north of Merritt on Hwy 5A towards Kamloops.
For driving, sightseeing trips you can visit the unique mesa formations
of the Hoodoos and the narrow rock chasms of Windy Canyon, both
located on Hwy 8 towards Spences Bridge. If you are interested in
the rich railway heritage of the Merritt area, travel south on Hwy
5 to Brookmere and see the Kettle Valley Railway Water Tank.
For outdoor recreation Merritt has it all. Winter sports include
the Kane Valley cross-country ski trail area, ice fishing and snowshoeing.
For snowmobiling try the area towards Brookmere at Mount Thynne
where you can find 50 km (30 miles) of maintained trails. You can
more remote areas 12 miles north-west of Merritt at the Honeymoon
area around Stoyoma Mountain.
During the summer there is great boating and water skiing on Nicola
Lake. There is hiking, dirt biking, mountain biking and exploring
around the vast amount of trails and forestry roads throughout the
One quick hiking trail if you're travelling through, conveniently
located by the Visitor Info Centre at the junction of Hwy 5A and
the Coquihalla Hwy 5, is called Godey Creek.
Trail - KVR
For people who enjoy biking on the Trans-Canada Trail you will enjoy
exploring the sections of the KVR around Merritt. The section that
goes from Merritt to Brookmere (Merritt Subdivision) is more developed
with the KVR more or less going through.
The other defunct Kettle Valley Railway right-of-way goes west from
Merritt to Spences Bridge (NK & S section). Unfortunately, this
section has a number of detours around washouts, uncompleted trestles
and you will require permission through First Nation lands. Nonetheless
you will find the trip as it meanders through the Nicola River absolutely
& Nicola Valley Guide Map
Merritt sits at the crossroads of around 7 highway systems throughout
the middle of the heartland of BC. If you travel on any one of these
roads you will be able to view a wide range of country with completely
different eco systems and wildlife.
Information and Links: Includes; Travel, Recreation, Accommodation,
Places to Eat and First Nations