How to make the most of your South Okana­gan get­away

The Georgia Straight - - High Tech -

(This story is spon­sored by Travel Pen­tic­ton.)

Sum­mer might be al­most over, but that doesn’t mean that the ad­ven­tures have to come to an end. That’s be­cause off-sea­son, be­tween Septem­ber and Novem­ber, can ac­tu­ally be the per­fect time to get away. Apart from the op­por­tu­nity to score some great deals, you can also avoid the crowds and en­joy a more au­then­tic ex­pe­ri­ence with the chance to meet the lo­cals.

And liv­ing in Van­cou­ver, you don’t have to go very far to find some of the very best that B.C. has to of­fer. In fact, within a four-hour car jour­ney along High­way 97, you can be in the beau­ti­ful South Okana­gan, which makes it the ideal des­ti­na­tion for a shorter stay or even just a week­end. The re­gion is home to more than 70 lo­cal winer­ies, five craft brew­eries, three dis­til­leries, and more than 30 an­nual fes­ti­vals— all sur­rounded by pris­tine lakes, stun­ning beaches, an ex­ten­sive trail network, and rugged moun­tain ter­rain. So all that’s left for you to do is fig­ure out what you want to do first!

And now, Travel Pen­tic­ton, Tourism Sum­mer­land, and Dis­cover Nara­mata, with fund­ing and sup­port from Des­ti­na­tion Bri­tish Columbia, have col­lab­o­rated to launch the new Chain of Events cam­paign— mak­ing it eas­ier than ever to plan your next city es­cape.

As Jo Charnock, project co­or­di­na­tor, ex­plains, “We have de­vel­oped a se­ries of itin­er­ar­ies and sig­na­ture ex­pe­ri­ences for each com­mu­nity, geared to­ward four spe­cific trav­eller types: The Ad­ven­turer, The Ath­lete, The Foodie, and The Fam­ily.”

The idea was born out of a pro­gram to pro­mote cy­cling, un­til or­ga­niz­ers re­al­ized that the area had a lot more to of­fer and a far broader ap­peal.

“We soon learned that the cy­cling en­thu­si­asts visit­ing were also in­ter­ested in other ac­tiv­i­ties, such as culi­nary, arts and cul­ture, or wine tour­ing, so we de­cided to ex­pand the con­cept,” said Thom Tis­chik, ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor of Travel Pen­tic­ton.

The Chain of Events pro­gram has been cre­ated so that you can plan a va­ca­tion sched­ule based on your in­ter­ests. For those who like to sam­ple fresh lo­cal pro­duce, or in­dulge in new and ex­tra­or­di­nary gas­tron­omy, the Foodie Ex­pe­ri­ence could be the one for you. Or per­haps you get more of a thrill from high-adren­a­line, phys­i­cal chal­lenges. In these cases, you might con­sider the Ath­lete or the Ad­ven­turer Ex­pe­ri­ences, which can in­clude tak­ing part in one of the re­gion’s many sport­ing events or get­ting wet in some of the lake-based ac­tiv­i­ties like kite surf­ing or wake­board­ing.

And even if you have the kids in tow, the Chain of Events pro­gram also has a Fam­ily Ex­pe­ri­ence itin­er­ary, fea­tur­ing mini-golf, go-kart­ing, tram­polin­ing, and a ride on the Ket­tle Val­ley Rail­way. So you’re sure to keep the lit­tle ones en­ter­tained, too.

The beauty of the pro­gram is that you can tai­lor it to your in­ter­ests and how much time you have. And as Charnock adds, “Many of the vis­i­tors to our re­gion only have a few days to spend here and this is a great way to help them get the ab­so­lute most out of their stay.”

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