BC wine country is a hidden gem. It’s really a superb destination wedding location for so many reasons…. wine and aesthetic beauty being two biggies! If you’re considering doing something unique and wine oriented for your destination wedding, but feel that Tuscany and Napa are already passé, then consider the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia, Canada. I just had the pleasure of returning from a destination wedding in a small town called Naramata, near Penticton BC. What a fabulous place!
Prior to the wedding, we drove to Osoyoos, which is about 2 hours from the Kelowna airport, to check out a new hotel for weddings. En route to Osoyoos, Highway 97 is dotted with some incredible wineries, and we had the pleasure of popping into a few for tastings along the way. Some notable vineyards include Road 13 Vineyards, Dirty Laundry Vineyard, Nk’Mip Cellars and Burrowing Owl Estate Winery.
We spent a lovely day and night at the Walnut Beach Resort, a new resort situated on Canada’s warmest lake, Lake Osoyoos. The suites are modern and bright, equipped with a full kitchen and living room, which can be very helpful for wedding groups that have families or even for couples who want to share a space and make meals drawn from the local produce. The Okanagan Valley is also known for its abundant fruit (orchards filled with plums, pears, cherries, apricots and apples) and fresh local vegatables and meat. It’s a great place to “eat in” as well as dine out. The night we stayed at the resort, as they were having an outdoor barbeque famous for it’s ribs. I arrived too late to try this specialty but enjoyed some delicious surf and turf, which was an excellent second choice!
The towns dotting the Okanagan are really spectacular, and it’s a real treat to be there when everything is in harvest. We stopped by a local fruit stand and I picked up a bag of mixed pears, plums and apples, but was also intrigued by the tiny green grapes for sale in the bushels. I wondered if they’d be sour, but to my delight, these were the absolute sweetest, most delicious grapes I’ve ever tasted. No wonder the wine is so delicious in this region.
On our way to Naramata for the wedding, which was held at the historic Naramata Heritage Inn and Spa, we popped into a few more wineries: La Frenz Winery, Laughing Stock Vineyards and Red Rooster Winery (to name just a few – there are so many more great wineries to check out!).
The wedding was filled with love and fun and I’d highly recommend this location to anyone interested in going the winery route, but doing it a bit differently than the norm.