Spirits Soar at Spirit Ridge

Regular readers of this blog may recall that last January, my husband, cat, and I spent a month in Beautiful British Columbia (BC) on Canada’s West Coast. Our destination was Spirit Ridge Vineyard Resort in Osoyoos, a tiny community situated in the southern tip of BC’s legendary wine country–the Okanagan Valley.

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You really feel the First Nations presence throughout Spirit Ridge in Osoyoos.

I had done reflective posts during our R, R & R time away (that’s rest, relaxation, and rejuvenation), as spirits really do soar at Spirit Ridge. It is truly a place to come if you want to enrich your spirit. But I had not done a travel post highlighting some of the things visitors to Spirit Ridge in Osoyoos might enjoy. Time to correct that, as this week, we head back to BC for six weeks, but this time on Vancouver Island–probably my favourite place in all of Canada. Much more on that later, but for now, I’d like to entice you with all of the reasons we loved Osoyoos and our stay at Spirit Ridge.

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This beautiful fountain is located on the shores of Lake Osoyoos at the south entrance to Osoyoos.

6 reasons to choose Osoyoos as your Okanagan destination

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Spirit Ridge in Osoyoos has a magical setting, with mountains on one side, and the vineyards and Lake Osoyoos on the other.

  1. Less traffic than some of the other Okanagan centres. As Osoyoos is located in the southern tip of the Okanagan Valley, it is smaller and less congested that some of the larger cities like Kelowna (the hub of the Okanagan) and Penticton, it’s smaller sister. I like that, as it’s perfect for a retreat when you want to get away from any hustle and bustle, and just enjoy the peaceful serenity of the location. Yes, Osoyoos, does get busier in the summer, but there is still far less traffic even at peak times, than you’ll find in the heart of the Okanagan.
  2. The Aboriginal/First Nations presence. Spirit Ridge is situated on property owned by the Osoyoos Indian Band, and so you will see more aboriginal art and feel more of a First Nations presence in Osoyoos than you will in the rest of the Okanagan. The Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre at Spirit Ridge will teach you much about the native peoples of the area.
  3. Osoyoos is practically situated on the international border with the USA. Within five minutes of our hotel, we were in Washington state! We enjoyed two trips to Washington while we were in Osoyoos, and were surprised at the quality of the Mexican food we enjoyed in the tiny communities of Oroville and Tonasket. Tonasket was about 15 minutes further than Oroville, but was home to the Rancho Chico Mexican Restaurant that was well worth the trip with its great food and handpainted Mexican chairs. We later learned that there are quite a few Mexican immigrants in northern Washington that work on the farms and orchards throughout the region.
  4. Osoyoos is home to Spirit Ridge Vineyard Resort, where you’ll find a laid-back resort populated by Canadian snowbirds from other parts of BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. Spirit Ridge is also home to the award-winning Nk’Mip Winery, the Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre as mentioned, the Talon Restaurant that overlooks Lake Osoyoos, the Solterra Desert Spa, and the Desert Dunes Golf Course.
  5. Good food, wine, and chocolate. Great food at Talon Restaurant at Spirit Ridge. I loved the Nk’Mip wine, and did I mention that the wine shop (which also sells a good supply of locally made artisan chocolate) was just a two-minute walk from our suite at Spirit Ridge? And within a short drive from Spirit Ridge, there are several other terrific vineyards including Burrowing Owl–which also features some custom-matched artisan chocolate to pair with the wine.
  6. You know I’m a fan of interesting spa treatments. While at Spirit Ridge, I had the pleasure of experiencing the Desert Sacred Wrap–a tribute to the natural surroundings and the aboriginal roots of the site. The full body wrap features red clay earth and an invigorating scalp massage followed by a soothing sage and cedar oil effleurage. I loved the smell and feel of the cedar oil.
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The treatment rooms at the Solterra Desert Spa reflect the spirit of the aboriginal people.

Have you been to Osoyoos? Have you stayed at, or visited the Spirit Ridge Vineyard Resort? If so, please share your thoughts.

Doreen Pendgracs

Known throughout the Web as the "Wizard of Words", I've been a freelance writer since 1993. I'm currently researching and writing volume II of "Chocolatour: A Quest for the World's Best Chocolate". Volume I was published in September, 2013.

37 Responses

  1. What a great gateway location. Sounds so restful and beautiful. I haven’t been there but I’m glad you found it so restful and nourishment for your body and soul.
    Jeannette Paladino recently posted…Give Thanks by Giving Jobs to Our VeteransMy Profile

  2. Thanks, Jeannette. It would be hard not to like Spirit Ridge.

  3. TammyJo Eckhart
    Twitter:
    says:

    Can you recall a couple of the wine and chocolate pairings?
    TammyJo Eckhart recently posted…Gift Box of Milk Chocolate from CaillerMy Profile

  4. Chris
    Twitter:
    says:

    Love the look of that Vineyard with the snow covered hills as a backdrop.

    Do they produce the ‘Ice Wine’ here like I saw plenty of in Ontario?

    Looking forward to reading about your favourite place in Canada (for me it’s the Yukon, but hey, I’ve only seen a fraction of your gorgeous country)!
    Chris recently posted…ChachapoyasMy Profile

  5. Sounds like a blast. What wines are they growing/making up there?
    Anne Louise Bannon recently posted…Green Beans Amandine (A Dark Side of the Fridge Special)My Profile

  6. Pat says:

    I got to enjoy all of the above with you many years ago!! I remember even looking into possibly buying a suite and using it for holiday/rental purposes. It is an awesome place to stay and I was quite jealous when you and Reg got to spend last December there!!

  7. Suzanne Boles
    Twitter:
    says:

    This sound fabulous, Doreen. I’m glad you are going to another warmer place for a while. We just got our first snow and I’m reminded of why I prefer warmer weather. Can’t wait to hear about this location. Have a great time!

  8. Joe Ankenbauer
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    says:

    This place looks amazing! I grew up near BC, but I’ve never been here. A spa day at Osoyoos sounds perfect!
    Joe Ankenbauer recently posted…Nautilus Reborn: Suijō BasuMy Profile

  9. Esther
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    says:

    Once upon a time in a past life we had friends in Pentiction, and we spent an afternoon at the beach one hot summer day. It was a fabulous day for a dip in the lake and I really love the sun. I understand Osoyoos is one of the hottest places in Canada, weatherwise.
    Also, I do love the idea of a spa day. You make it sound so enticing.
    Esther recently posted…Adrenal FatigueMy Profile

  10. Kathy Andrew
    Twitter:
    says:

    Oh this sounds so fantastic Doreen & how wonderful to visit somewhere with such First Nation influence. What a beautiful part of the world.
    Kathy Andrew recently posted…3 Key Points Creatives Can Learn from #NaNoWriMoMy Profile

  11. The place looks really cool and the sound of good chocolate and wine makes its all the more inviting for me.

  12. Jessica
    Twitter:
    says:

    Good food, wine, and chocolate. Those three are more than enough for me to choose Osoyos. 🙂 Thank you for briging me to this place virtually. Lovely experience! 🙂

  13. Elizabeth
    Twitter:
    says:

    I love the statue at the beginning of the post. I will have to go and find your other posts about this area. We were just talking about it today. I don’t think we will make it in 2016, but maybe 2017!
    Elizabeth recently posted…Colorful Grilled Seafood Salad with Wild RiceMy Profile

  14. Loving the sound of this, Doreen.
    Never visited a vineyard before but this looks like the way to do it 🙂
    What a beautiful landscape too! Looks fab!
    James recently posted…Top 5 Photo Spots in Rome (guaranteed to knock your socks off)My Profile

  15. Amanda says:

    Love the mountains, great reasons to visit Osoyoos indeed!! Lots of peace and a great get away destination!!
    Amanda recently posted…How To Get Rid Of Underarm Smell: Home Remedies That Work!My Profile

  16. Catarina says:

    Love the look of the vineyard. Am not surprised you found it relaxing. Get the feeling it’s the kind of place where you naturally get into mindflow…
    Catarina recently posted…Do you agree with Harvard about the worst mistakes leaders make?My Profile

  17. This is really interesting, we drove through a First Nations area on our way to Joffre Lake yesterday but I’d like to stay at Osoyoos.
    Gemma Two Scots Abroad recently posted…Overheard Whilst Travelling – Rockies’ RebelMy Profile

  18. vineyards covered in snow is such a strange sighting for me, but I guess it does snow in many places where there are vines and they just go into lethargy
    Mar Pages vidal recently posted…Conrad Koh Samui review – Infinite pool views to fall in love againMy Profile

  19. Travelled with your cat? Now I am definitely looking for that post!!! Thanks for sharing your BC experience! It never crossed my mind to travel here and I have no idea why. Good to know there’s heaps to do. Xx
    Trisha Velarmino recently posted…Best Travel Destinations for 2016My Profile

  20. Betty Jackson says:

    We just spent the month of February at Spirit Ridge. The suites are very comfortable and well kept with friendly staff. The heated pool is open year round for easy exercise.
    There is the opportunity to take long walks unhindered by snow and ice underfoot. The new Art Gallery by a co-op of local artists is just out standing. There is so much more to keep a person busy.

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