It’s perhaps an over-quoted phrase, but one that’s frankly often under-appreciated. Quite simply put, “the best adventures to be had are off the beaten path.”
Now, here in the Okanagan it’s easy to think there’s little that could possibly be off the beaten path – but you might be surprised if you swing your car north from Kelowna and follow the mountains up past Vernon. Up here the road flattens out and the valley floor sinks into a vast expanse of picturesque rolling farmland. This is where you’ll find the dual communities of Armstrong and Spallumcheen. This is the perfect place to start your Okanagan adventure because this is where the Okanagan Valley begins!
When travelling off the beaten path, one should seek out the locals first to learn the best places to explore. Fortunately, this step is easy up here. Right off Highway 97 on Bridge Street sits the Armstrong Spallumcheen Chamber of Commerce & Visitor Centre. It’s a modest little building nestled behind a mighty maple tree that very well may be older than the town itself. The staff here are warm, welcoming and more than happy to offer visitors advice on where to discover one of their town’s hidden gems. You’re more than likely to hear a few town tales while you’re here too!
The wine scene up here is young, but already living up to the prestigious reputation of this valley. The cheese scene is significantly older, and among one of the best-known regions on the continent. Armstrong takes its cheese seriously, with the industry’s roots here dating back to 1902. At one point, this humble little city was the second largest cheese producer in Canada. There’s a Spring Market featuring local produce, among other events. The Visitor Centre here offers an online calendar of events for the area. So start planning your Okanagan adventure now, at the place where it all begins! www.aschamber.com