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 Home > Travel BC > BC Cities and Towns > Thompson Okanagan > Oliver

Oliver
Oliver is located 21 km (13 miles) north of Osoyoos and 40 km (25 miles) south of Penticton on Hwy 97. Situated at the northern tip of Canada's only desert, Oliver enjoys a climate of dry, semi-arid weather with very mild winters.

'Wine Capital of Canada'
Fruit growing and vineyards are very prevalent throughout the area providing employment and eco-tourism opportunities. Oliver is often considered the Wine Capital of Canada with more than 14 wineries in the area.

Complimentary Wine Sampling
Oliver has produced quite a few varieties of world-class wines that can be enjoyed. You can take part in the various tours that are offered at most wineries and enjoy the complimentary wine sampling before you select a vintage.

Tinhorn Creek Vineyards
A favourite tour has to be the one at Tinhorn Creek Vineyards located just south of town on Hwy 97 at Rd. 7. You will not be disappointed as the ambiance and class of Tinhorn Creek prevail in all respects.

Wineries

Oliver Bicycling and Hiking Trail
Enjoy this 18.4 kms (11.5 miles) biking and hiking trail that follows the Okanagan River from McAlpine Bridge north of Oliver near Vaseux Lake, to the northern tip of Osoyoos Lake in the south. This multi-use trail, which is paved in sections, allows baby strollers, people with rollerblades, motorized and manpowered wheelchairs, horseback riders and, of course, hikers and cyclists.

Okanagan River
The trail is an excellent way of providing a very tranquil route past large sweeping willows along the slow-moving Okanagan River. Easy access points to several wineries make the trail useful if you are doing a wine tour of the various vineyards. Located next to the trail is the Centennial RV Park if you would like to stay right in town.

Kettle Valley Railway Trail
For people using the Trans Canada Trail, the Oliver Bicycling and Hiking Trail follows part of the right-of-way of the now-defunct Kettle Valley Railway. This was part of a KVR spur line that ran from Penticton to Osoyoos from 1923 to 1978 called the Osoyoos Subdivision. You can still bike or walk from Penticton to Osoyoos if you want, except some of the right-of-way has disappeared or is hard to find.

Going South on KVR
If you're going south from Oliver to Osoyoos, before you come to Osoyoos Lake turn at Road 22 towards Hwy 97. Follow Highway 97 towards Osoyoos then turn at 134th Avenue past the Sun Fresh Packing House into Osoyoos.

Going North on KVR
Leaving Oliver going north towards Okanagan Falls you have to cross Hwy 97 at McAlpine Bridge. The KVR Trail is bit tricky to find and a little rough in places. If you persevere and "portage" around some of the rougher spots, eventually you'll reach the foot of McIntyre Bluffs and the south end of Vaseux Lake Provincial Park.

Golden Mile Hiking Trail
For the more adventurous try the 6.5 km (4 miles) long Golden Mile Hiking Trail starting at the Tinhorn Creek Vineyard. The trail is open to both hikers and mountain bikers. This trail traverses through fruit orchards and vineyards providing outstanding panoramic views of the surrounding valley and mountains around Oliver.

Visitor Info Centre
Make sure you pick up a map complete with route instructions from either Tinhorn Creek Vineyards at the southern end of the trail or the Visitor Info Centre next to Kiwanis Park. The Visitor Info Centre is located along the Okanagan River Multi-use Trail in the renovated, built in 1923, CPR train station.

Fairview
The Golden Mile Hiking Trail is well worth walking it as it goes through some old mining ruins, past the historic Stamp Mill and the heritage town site of Fairview. Just remember this trail goes through some rougher conditions complete with Rattlesnakes and Prickly Pear Cactus. A good precaution is to wear some decent walking shoes. It is also wise that you be prepared for very hot conditions in the summer so please remember drinking water, hat and sunscreen.

Old Fairview Road
There are a few backcountry roads around Oliver where one can get off the beaten track and explore. One is the old Fairview Road which leads from Oliver to Cawston near Keremeos. This dirt road takes a route that follows the northern border of the South Okanagan Grasslands Provincial Park.

Madden Lake and Bear/Ripley Lake
There is some hiking access into the provincial park as well as into Madden Lake and Bear/Ripley Lake Forest Recreation Sites only 11 km (7 miles) from Oliver. These lakes will provide you with some great fishing but the road into these lakes is a little rough so a truck is recommended. Watch for the Forest Service Recreation signs along the route to Cawston for the turnoff to these lakes.

Green Lake Road
If you're travelling north to Okanagan Falls, rather than take Hwy 97, another route for you is the Green Lake Road. This backcountry road takes you past some interesting vistas of Hawthorne Mountain Vineyards with beautiful views of Skaha Lake to the north.

Willowbrook
As you travel north from Oliver on Hwy 97, look for the turnoff to Seacrest Road just past the Sportsmen's Bowl. Once on Seacrest Road take White Lake Road to the community of Willowbrook. Once you're at the northern side of Willowbrook, the Green Lake Road to Okanagan Falls will appear.

Mt Baldy
For winter sport enthusiasts there is Mt Baldy located 4 km (25 miles) east on McKinney Road that eventually goes to Rock Creek. Mt Baldy is a great destination if you enjoy smaller crowds, a relaxed atmosphere and great snow. The prices for a lift ticket are reasonable offering 1,500 vertical feet of exciting terrain. If you're planning to stay awhile, accommodation is also available on Mt Baldly.

Cross-Country Skiing
There are also some cross-country skiing trails located at 27 km (17 miles) on McKinney Road just before Mt Baldy. McKinney Nordic Ski Club, affiliated with Cross-Country B.C., maintains 12 km (7.5 miles) of three clearly marked, day-use groomed trails for all levels of cross-country ski and snowshoe trails.

Oliver Golf Courses

Oliver Links

 

 

Oliver Osoyoos
click map for larger image

 

Wine Capital of Canada
Wine Capital of Canada

 

Burrowing Owl Estate Vineyards
Burrowing Owl Estate Vineyards

 

Highway 97 Through Oliver
Highway 97 Through Oliver

 

Multi-Use Trail
Multi-use Trail

 

The Oliver Movie Theatre on Hwy 97
The Oliver Movie Theatre on Hwy 97

 

McIntyres Bluff
McIntyre Bluffs

 

Wine Country
Wine Country

 

Oliver Visitor Info Centre
Oliver Visitor Info Centre

 

Fairview Gold
Fairview Gold

 

Fruit Orchards and Vineyards
Fruit Orchards and Vineyards

 

Tuc-el-nuit Lake
Tuc-el-nuit Lake

 

Oliver Museum
Oliver Museum

 

Vaseux Lake
Vaseux Lake and McIntyre Bluffs

 
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