Cycling is basically a way of life in Kelowna. Whether you’re zipping around town or exploring local wineries, tons of great routes exist to allow you to really experience this lakeside Okanagan community leisurely on the flats or through the hills (if you’re ready for a workout). Whether you pack your bike along or rent one when you arrive, make sure to scope out the following routes.
1. Lakeshore Road
Lakeshore Road is a popular cycling route that runs along the Okanagan Lake, and provides cyclists with a truly scenic ride. With plenty of restaurants and cafes along the road, you’ll have no trouble finding a great place to stop for lunch.
2. Myra Canyon
A favourite among locals and tourists alike is a section of the Kettle Valley Railway trails called Myra Canyon. Made up of several kilometers of trail as well as 18 bridges and 2 tunnels, this route is perfect for all levels of cyclists and it offers some of the most breathtaking views. Pack a picnic, check out the restored trestles and a make a day of this historic route.
3. Smith Creek Trail
Located in West Kelowna, Smith Creek offers cyclists a network of exhilarating mountain biking trails. Filled with obstacles and hills, the Smith Creek trails provide a fun challenge for more experienced riders. This route definitely gets more difficult as you descend, so prepare for a roller coaster-like experience. Hold on tight and enjoy the ride!
4. Mission Creek Greenway
Mission Creek Greenway is easily one of Kelowna’s most popular linear parks. With over 18 kilometers of trails, it’s the perfect place to explore and appreciate Kelowna’s beautiful landscapes. During your bike ride, you’ll be able to take in the spectacular views of Mission Creek and Gallagher’s Canyon as well as the trail’s abundance of wildlife. For those wanting to test their abilities, there is also a mountain bike technical skills park at the Hollywood Road south entrance.
5. Rails with Trails
Rails with Trails is an off-road pathway located in Central Kelowna and is part of the city’s initiative to create an accessible and sustainable means of transportation. As a result, this pathway is an ideal spot for recreational cycling as it connects to a larger network of pathways, which includes a 19.5 kilometer loop within Kelowna’s urban centre. Throughout your bike ride, you’ll be able to make stops at beautiful parks, neighborhoods, and shops.
6. Knox Mountain
The Knox Mountain trails feature some of the best views of Kelowna and Okanagan Lake that the region has to offer. If you’re visiting Kelowna and bringing your bike, Knox Mountain is a must-do and great for intermediate to advanced riders. You’ll find all-purpose and technical trails featuring steep inclines, you can bike up these from the bottom or drive to one of the look-outs for an easier ride. We definitely recommend checking out the scenic single track trail that leads to Paul’s Tomb and the beach-- perfect for a dip after your ride.
7. Gillard/Crawford Trails
Gillard trails is a well-known trail network with descents ranging from intermediate to advanced free ride including ramps and stunts. The entire descent can take between 30 minutes (if you’re bombing) to two hours (depending on your skill level and route). Intermediate-to-experience bikers love Gillard for its array single track trails and scenic views of both Okanagan Lake and Valley.
Feature image: Tourism Kelowna