My Top 10 Kid Friendly Hikes in the South Okanagan

by Josée

1. Naramata Creek Park (Naramata) moderate

This 2.4 km hike, round trip, takes between 30 minutes to 1 hour to complete with children. It’s an easy hike with interesting geological features and a gorgeous waterfall at the end. The hike is not stroller friendly and requires crossing the creek twice using logs. A great place to explore spring, summer and fall!



2. Peach Cliff (Okanagan Falls) challenging

This approximately 4.5 km hike, round trip (depending on which trail you take), is moderately difficult with a steep ascent near the top. It takes about 2 hours to complete. The various features and history make this a really interesting hike for children. The hike is not stroller and exposed to the sun especially near the peak. A great hike in the spring and fall. Be sure to treat yourself to Tickleberry’s after this hike.



3. Giant’s Head Mountain Park (Summerland) challenging

A steep 2.5 km (5.1 km, round trip) climb up this remnant of volcanic dome offers a spectacular 360-degree panoramic view of the Okanagan Valley. The challenging hike takes about two hours to complete with children. The hike is not stroller friendly and is very exposed to the sun. Try this hike in the spring and fall. On a hot summer day I would recommend driving to the top.



4. Skaha Bluffs Provincial Parks (Penticton) varied – easy to challenging

There are many trails throughout this area, some of which are quite technical. It is a beautiful area and with shady spots, such as Shady Valley (see map), making it a good place to hike in the spring, summer and fall. Be careful of loose rocks, rock climbers and steep cliffs!



5. Skaha Lake Pictographs (Penticton) moderate

Discover pictographs by taking an approximately 2.5 km hike, round trip, through bighorn sheep habitat. There is a steep ascent near the beginning of the hike but the trail become more moderately sloped afterwards. Not stroller friendly and partially exposed to the sun. It takes about 1 to 1.5 hours to complete this hike with children.



6. McIntyre Bluff (Oliver) extra challenging

A 10.5 km hike that begins at Covert Farms and ends with an amazing view of the South Okanagan Valley. This hike is exposed with steep ascents. It takes about 3 to 5 hours to complete the round trip with children, depending on ability and weather. Alternatively, hike to Rattlesnake Lake and back (less than halfway) for an easier hike with children.



7. Osoyoos Lake Oxbows (Osoyoos) easy

Learn about the importance of oxbows on an easy 4.0 km walk. This leisurely walk takes about an hour to complete with children but is completely exposed to the sun. Good for spring and fall.



8. Mahoney Lake (Okanagan Falls) easy

Take a leisurely walk around this unique saline (salty) lake, but be prepared for muddy shoes!



9. Osoyoos Desert Centre (Osoyoos) very easy

Enjoy an easy 1.5 km walk over a boardwalk while overlooking the beautiful and endangered ecosystem of the South Okanagan. Admission prices and hours of operation are located on their website.



10. Vaseux Lake Wildlife Centre (Vaseux Lake) very easy

Take a short very easy walk on a boardwalk to the two-storey, bird observation platform, a great place for bird viewing. The walk is stroller friendly and takes about 15 minutes to complete round trip.


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Andrew August 4, 2016 - 2:37 am

Happened to spot a mamma and kid (what does one call a baby moose?) in the water near the Vaseux Lake Wildlife Centre yesterday (Aug.2nd). Better yet, I keep a set of binoculars handy under my car seat for fluke opportunities like this. Funny looking creatures, but nice to watch nonetheless.

Josée August 4, 2016 - 8:50 am

It is such a great place to view wildlife! I’m surprised that there was a baby moose (calf) there, how neat, but yes I agree they’re funny looking creatures.

Suzy March 24, 2017 - 8:18 pm

You should explore the trails surrounding Mahoney Lake some more. There is a great loop up the mountain in behind the lake. It’s fairly steep but my son has been doing it since he was 3 and a half. There is a fabulous trail on the opposite side of the road up the mountain. If you take one arm it will actually take you all the way to Willowbrook if you want….but then you have no car…. it’s mucky up top though so bring bug spray and go in the summer not spring. It’s fabulous. Beautiful views… all different types of vegetation.

Josée March 24, 2017 - 9:39 pm

Thanks for the suggestion Suzy! Yes, I’ve heard of the trails up there and I’ve been itching to explored that area some more. There’s also a trail that connects White Lake to Mahoney Lake, have you hiked that one? It sounds like there’s whole network of trails waiting to be explored in that area. I can hardly wait!

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