GOBF 2017: What to Do Beyond the Kelowna Beer Festival
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GOBF 2017: What to Do Beyond the Kelowna Beer Festival

If you were to choose a weekend, any weekend to visit Kelowna, May 11 – 13 2017 is the date you want. Let me back track here so I don’t sound so pushy. Kelowna hosts the Great Okanagan Beer Festival (GOBF) this year on May 11 – 13 and it’s kind of a big deal. Kelowna is a gem of a place anytime of year, but the Great Okanagan Beer Festival just sweetens the deal. Imagine sampling beer on the shores of Okanagan Lake with the sun shining and downtown Kelowna steps away – it’s hard to find something wrong with that picture.

Step One: Leave work with a hop in your step.
Step Two: Buy your GOBF tickets online here.
Step Three: Plan a stellar weekend in Kelowna. Here’s how…

When it comes to Kelowna, there are loads of things to do, see, eat and experience. When you’re not preoccupied with sampling your way through a whopping 120+ beers at Kelowna’s famous Waterfront Park, or taking part in the many special events, here are some of the “musts” for your #GOBF2017 inspired trip.

Plenty of beers to choose from at Missions Tap House and Grill.

Plenty of beers to choose from at Missions Tap House and Grill. Photo: Missions Tap House and Grill

Downtown Eats

Coffee lovers, your trip will not be complete with out an Americano from Pulp Fiction Coffee House. This one of a kind comic book and antique library inspired café is home to a collection of books and delicious coffee inspired drinks.

Antico Pizza Napoletana has a great little patio to enjoy a freshly wood fired pizza on. This gem of a place scored a whopping 5 out of 5 on appearance, crust, cheesiness, sauce, toppings, and wow factor/creativity from the folks at The Phoenix.

The Little Hobo Soup and Sandwich Shop is an absolute must! This little eatery has delicious home cooked meals and you can bet you’ll be greeted with a smile. Beat the lunch time rush because you don’t want to hear the words “all gone” when asking for a bowl of curry soup. Note – the Little Hobo is cash only.

A laidback evening in a comfortably sophisticated pub is guaranteed at BNA Brewing. The best part about BNA Brewing? You can play bocce ball in the upstairs lounge. In fact, BNA is hosting the Brewers Social as part of #GOBF2017 on Friday, May 12th, starting at 8pm. Stop by to mix and mingle with the brewers and check out this amazing space.

If you’re looking for some brunch options, check out OAK+CRU the morning of the #GOBF2017 Main Event. Located on the lakefront just steps from the festival grounds, they’ll be serving up bennies, mimosas and specialty craft brews. Another fantastic option is the Train Station Pub, a Kelowna must since 1926. They serve up brunch every weekend but we’d suggest paying them a visit for the Hair of the Dog Brunch presented by Grimm’s Fine Foods on Sunday, May 14th for some special #GOBF2017 brunch features, including the Grimm’s Signature Caesar.

Jewellery by Ugly Bunny, available at Funktional.

Jewellery by Ugly Bunny, available at Funktional. Photo: Abby Cooper – Abby Dell Photography

Shopping in Kelowna

The Kelowna community is big on supporting local and there is no blaming them, there are some serious standout shops in this town. Be sure to put these ones on your list.

  • Blonde: For you fashion forward one of a kind ladies out there. Blonde has top trending name brands lining the walls and everyone working there speaks flawless fashion.
  • Funktional: Art, jewellery and all things awesome. The featured wood jewellery collection by “Ugly Bunny” is anything but ugly and is hand crafted in Kelowna.
  • 207 Men: One for the dudes. Enjoy a pamper at the built in barber shop and scan the shop for the latest fashion trends. You’ll head back to GOBF feeling super fresh after a stop here.
Visiting the Kelowna Mountain suspension bridges is something you can do beyond the Kelowna Beer Festival.

Great views to be had from hitting the trails in Kelowna. Photo: Abby Cooper – Abby Dell Photography

Hitting the Trails

It’s not a matter of if there are awesome trails in Kelowna; it’s a matter of choosing which one to explore. For a cruisy day by foot or bike check out the Kettle Valley Railway. The 2% grade is friendly for all abilities and offers a gorgeous view of Myra Canyon. Or, for a steeper option with city views, climb one to five kilometres up to Knox Mountain, depending on the trail you choose. Crawford Falls in Canyon Falls Park is a short, but difficult hike with a great reward of a 20-foot waterfall awaiting you at the end of the trail. Alternatively, if you’re a biking adrenaline junkie, head up to Silverstar Mountain Resort for some downhill mountain biking before the festival so you’re ready to relax all weekend long.

Grapes ready for the picking at a vineyard in Kelowna.

Grapes ready for the picking at a vineyard in Kelowna. Photo: Abby Cooper – Abby Dell Photography

Sightseeing Beyond the Great Okanagan Beer Festival

Some of the best sight seeing is done on the nearby vineyard patios of Kelowna over looking Okanagan Lake. If you have time for just one, make it one of these: Mission Hill Winery, Little Straw Vineyard or CedarCreek Estates and you won’t be disappointed.

Instead of a downward view of the lake, get a completely different perspective from the middle of the lake. Boat rentals of all kinds are available on the docks outside of the Great Okanagan Beer Festival area, with pontoon boats, wakeboard boats, seadoos and more available for hourly rentals right from Waterfront Park. You can also skip the motor and cruise the shoreline via Stand Up Paddle board.

Feeding a kangaroo at Kangaroo Creek Farm in Kelowna.

Kangaroo Creek Farm in Kelowna. Photo: Abby Cooper – Abby Dell Photography

Kangaroos, Oh My!

There is no holding back this little Kelowna secret; there is a Kangaroo Farm in Kelowna! Yeah, that’s right, in Okanagan country you can find rescued roos hopping around waiting to be hand feed and pet. For the awe factor alone, please put this on your list. Kangaroo Creek Farm is open daily from 10am – 2pm and requires a $5 minimum cash donation for entrance.

There is a lot to do in the Okanagan area at any time of year, more than just one trips worth that’s for sure! So, if you need an excuse to explore Kelowna for the first time or the tenth time, purchase your Great Okanagan Beer Festival ticket online while you still can.

Be sure to share your Great Okanagan Beer Festival experience with us by using the hashtags #GOBF2017 and #fortheloveofbeer.

vip1GENERAL ADMISSION TICKETS

Main Event May 13th

All prices are in CAD.

Sold Out

EARLYBIRD$35

  • Official GOBF Sampling Mug
  • Live Music
  • Access to 45+ breweries
  • Access to exhibitors & vendors
  • A rad time celebrating with 3,000 other festival-goers on the stunning Okanagan Lake
  • 3 Beer Tokens
Sold Out

ADVANCE$40

  • Official GOBF Sampling Mug
  • Live Music
  • Access to 45+ breweries
  • Access to exhibitors & vendors
  • A rad time celebrating with 3,000 other festival-goers on the stunning Okanagan Lake
  • 3 Beer Tokens

REGULAR$45

  • Official GOBF Sampling Mug
  • Live Music
  • Access to 45+ breweries
  • Access to exhibitors & vendors
  • A rad time celebrating with 3,000 other festival-goers on the stunning Okanagan Lake
  • 3 Beer Tokens

Abby Cooper

A lover of all things outdoors, Abby Cooper is a splitboarder, hiker, adventurer, year round snow seeker, photographer and writer. She's living life one adventure to the next with her dog by her side.