Looking around Vernon
Vernon Travel Blog› entry 1 of 1 › view all entries
Vernon. My hometown. The place Iâ€™ve lived by WHOLE life. Itâ€™s a beautiful, small city in the Okanagan Valley, which is situated in BCâ€™s interior. The population is about 37,000 people. Itâ€™s the North Okanaganâ€™s largest city and is located on three lakes, Okanagan, Kalamalka, and Swan, and surrounded by golf courses and Silver Star Mountain (the local ski hill). About 450 kms West is Vancouver, 600 kms East is Calgary, and 150 kms South is the U.S. border.
Vernon is accessible by car, via Highways 1, 3, 5, 6, and 97, by bus, and by air. Vernon has a small airport where small, private planes are able to take-off and land, however, 25 minutes South, on Highway 97, is Kelowna International Airport.
Vernon has four distinct season. Summers are quite warm (Usually in the high 20â€™s or low 30â€™s C). Every summer brings a heat wave with temperatures reaching he high 30â€™s C. Summer wear consists of sandals, shorts, t-shirts or tank tops, and sundresses. Donâ€™t forget you bathing suit!
Winters are usually quite mild with temperatures hovering anywhere from 0 to -5. Sometimes it gets warmer than that, and of course, cold snaps bring temperatures colder than that - anywhere to -20 (it doesnâ€™t last long, though). There is always a lot of snow in the hills, and quite often on the ground in the city, but city crews usually do a good job at plowing the roads to keep them clear. Youâ€™re best bet for dressing warmly are sweaters, vest, fleece clothing, and warm jackets. A scarf, toque, and gloves are good to have, too.
Vernon has all the amenities of a big city, however there isnâ€™t a lot variety. It has big box stores and privately owned boutiques and businesses, but if youâ€™re looking for a cool pair of shoes, youâ€™ll be lucky to find it (unless you want runners). However, about 35-40 minutes down Highway 97 is Kelowna, and it is the largest city in the Okanagan (and one of the largest in BC). Shopping-wise, it has much more than Vernon, so sometimes a trip South is in order when looking for new clothes or shoes. Vernon has a community college, and thereâ€™s also one in Kelowna, but in Kelowna, there is a university, so students donâ€™t have to go too far from home.
Something unique to Vernon are all the murals found around the city. There are 26 in all, and are found painted on downtown buildings, ranging in size from 300 ft. long and 40 ft. high. There are guided tours available, but itâ€™s more fun on a self-guided tour. Maps on where the murals are found can be obtained at the Tourist Information Booth. Iâ€™ve tried finding them all and still havenâ€™t, so have fun!
Vernon is a very sports oriented town, with sports for every season and all being quite popular. Spring and summer sees all the local soccer fields and baseball diamonds full of people playing. In the summer, beaches are full of swimmers and volley ball players. Once the snow melts, ball hockey, lacrosse, football, rugby, biking, rollerblading, golf, skateboarding, hiking, canoeing, camping, fishing, water sports, and ultimate Frisbee begin.
Some things found in Vernon are:
Attractions: Oâ€™Keefe Ranch, Allan Brooks Nature Centre, Planet Bee Honey Farm, Kin Race Track, Sun Valley Motor Speedway, Atlantis Waterslides, Okanagan Science Centre, Vernon Art Gallery, Vernon Museum, BX Falls, Okanagan Opals, Powerhouse Theatre, Performing Arts Centre, Murals
Ski Hill: Silver Star
Events/Festivals: Funtastic Slow-Pitch Tournament, Vernon Winter Carnival, Sunshine Festival, Creative Chaos, Okanagan Wine Festival, Interior Provincial Exhibition (in Armstrong)
Golf Courses: Hillview Golf Club, Vernon Golf and Country Club, Spallumcheen Golf and Country Club, and Predator Ridge
Beaches- Ellison Park, Paddlewheel Park, Kin Beach, Juniper Bay, Jade Bay, and Kal Beach
Parks: Kalamalka Provincial Park, Ellison Park, Polson Park
Markets & Produce: Davison Orchards, Aberdeen Farm Market, Bella Vista Farm Market, Friesenâ€™s Country Tyme Gardens, Pleasant Valley Fruit and Garden Centre, Swan Lake Fruit Market and Garden Centre, and Vernon Farmers Markets
Wineries: Hunting Hawk Vineyards
Nearby lakes good for fishing: Echo, Keefer, Sugar, Woods, Pinaus, Jimmy, Wood, Nugget, and Square, and Mabel, along with Okanagan, Kalamalka, and Swan
To Note: Itâ€™s easy to do day trips from Vernon.
I love Vernon because itâ€™s comfortable. Itâ€™s what I know, and itâ€™s where my family and friends are. Itâ€™s home.
* As I find more pictures, I'll post them