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Wineries of Southern BC, Vancouver and The Island

Explore the Ripe Valleys of British Columbia's Wine Country

Canada has many reasons to be proud, and the vineyards of British Columbia are certainly at the top of the list. The breath-taking valleys of BC are known to produce some of the world’s best wine.

Explore the vineyards of Okanagan Valley of southeastern BC, the Fraser Valley just east of Vancouver, and the Cowichan Valley north of the capital city of Victoria.

In British Columbia’s vineyard country, wine is about family. Visit family operated wineries such as Marley Farm Winery in Saanichton on Vancouver Island, or the Blue Heron Fruit Winery located in Pitt Meadows in Fraser Valley. Many winemakers and vineyard owners run their operation with the help of friends and family, creating an exceptional environment for your visit to British Columbia wineries.

Southern BC
World famous wines start in the Okanagan Valley. Framed by Okanagan Lake and the Okanagan River, this valley was once a hub for fruit orchards, now a cozy home for miles of vineyards. Major cities include Kelowna and Penticton, as well as dreamlike places such as Peachland and Summerland.

Take a break in the beautiful picnic area at the House of Rose Winery, or hear the Bells of Mission Hill ring out over West Kelowna. Step inside the tasting room of the Township 7 Winery, or have lunch at the Barrel Top Grill at Little Straw Vineyards.

Keep the Okanagan Valley wine tasting tours going strong when you visit even more exceptional wineries. Don't miss the 3 Mile Estate Winery, another Penticton favorite, the 8th Generation Vineyard in Summerland, or the Arrowleaf Cellars in Lake Country.

In West Kelowna you'll want to explore the Beaumont Family Estate Winery, while any visit to Osoyoos should yield a visit to the Adega on 45th Estate Winery. An adventure awaits you in the Okanagan Valley – where the awards are found.

Fraser Valley neighbors the Vancouver metropolitan area – another valley producing 100% BC, VQA. Following the Fraser River in the Coast Mountains, the Fraser Valley is known for its production of Chardonnay, Gewürtztraminer, Bacchus, and Pinot Noir.

This might be the place to celebrate Global Chardonnay Day in late May, thanks to vineyards like the Glenugie Winery and River’s Bend Winery. Stop by Blue Heron Fruit Winery for fabulous dessert and table wines, or spend the entire day at Domaine de Chaberton Estates – the oldest and largest winery in the valley.

The Isabella Winery should be on any to-do list when staying in Richmond. The Kermode Wild Berry Winery is popular in Dewdney, while the Abbotsford-Aldergrove area is home to the Lotusland Vineyards.

When your Vancouver area visit has you in New Westminster, be sure to tour and taste your way through the Pacific Breeze Winery. Another Langley hot-spot for wine lovers is the Vista D'oro Farms & Winery. Stay in Vancouver and surf the wine bars – where the taste of the vineyards come to you – or hit the road for a trek through British Columbia’s Fraser Valley.

Vancouver Island
Vancouver Island is home to the Cowichan Valley – a beautiful piece of the coast decorated by remarkable vineyards and some lively flavors.

You'll have a chance to tour nearly 40 different wineries in the region – take a drive along the Island Highway skirting the eastern edge of the island and explore major cities like Duncan, Nanaimo and, of course, the capital city of Victoria.

This area cradles a number of welcoming wineries, such as the Starling Lane Winery on Heritage Farm, or the quaint Averill Creek Vineyard at the base of Mount Prevost.

The Alderlea Vineyards is a popular – and fruitful – destination in the Cowchian Valley, as is 22 Oaks Winery. Explore the Black Creek-Courtenay area and enjoy a tour of the Blue Moon Estate Winery.

When you stay in Port Alberni, be sure taste your way around the Chase & Warren Estate Winery. Take advantage of the beautiful coastal weather as you journey through the wine trails of the Cowichan Valley – and be sure to bring an extra piece of luggage for all the bottles of “souvenirs.”

Okanagan Valley – Where the Awards Are

D’Angelo Estate Winery
Join winemaker Sal D’Angelo at his vibrant vineyard in the Okanagan Valley in the city of Penticton. Settled on the Naramata Bench along the eastern shores of Okanagan Lake, the D’Angelo Estate Winery is the second vineyard established by the D’Angelo family. Established in 2007 as an additional location to the Ontario winery, this valley estate sets the mood for a beautiful day spent in southern British Columbia.

The D’Angelo family invites you to ride into this Naramata Bench estate – a ten-kilometer drive from the Best Western hotel in Penticton – for complimentary tastings, an impressive wine shop, and a picnic area currently underway.

Visit the D’Angelo Estate Winery from May through October – a beautiful time to swing by British Columbia in general – and head to the winery from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. from Monday through Saturday – 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays. Visiting from November to April? Call ahead to schedule an appointment to see this vineyard during the crisp winter season.

The D’Angelo Estate Winery is a sanctuary for red wines. Take home a bottle of the 2007 Tempranillo VQA or the 2006 Pinot Noir VQA – both winners of the bronze medal at the Canadian Wine Awards. Your trip to the Okanagan Valley will be remembered with every sip of these D'Angelo flavors.

House of Rose Winery
Open since 1993, the Rose family has operated the House of Rose Winery – one of the first 17 wineries to open its doors in the Okanagan Valley.

The House of Rose Winery graces its guests with free wine tastings and tours – as well as a picturesque picnic area in the vineyards. Order the picnic special – cheese, crackers and antipasto with two glasses of wine for $18.00 – or feel free to bring your own lunch.

Visit the House of Rose Winery – just 10 kilometers from the Best Western hotel in Kelowna. You’re welcome daily from April through October, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., or November to March, Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m. All House of Rose wines are grown in British Columbia, right in the Okanagan Valley.

Be sure to bring home a bottle Hot Flash – a fiery red – or their famed Vintage Okanagan Port – a sweet escape back to the Okanagan Valley no matter where you go from here.

Little Straw Vineyards
The Slamka family has a treat for you in British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley. Family owned since 1996, Little Straw Vineyards is tucked away in the Lakeview Heights district – a 10-minute drive from the Best Western hotel in West Kelowna.

The idea of Little Straw Vineyards was planted along with the first vineyard back in 1969. Peter Slamka – winemaker extraordinaire – manufactures the only Auxerrois Icewine in the country, and is known for his Pinot Noirs and Sauvignon Blancs.

The process starts at the base of Mount Boucherie, and ends with a free tasting at Little Straw Vineyards. Hungry? Stop in at the Barrel Top Grill, another delicious reason to head to West Kelowna. Take home some 2006 Syrah, or the popular 2000 Auxerrois Icewine – the best souvenir from Okanagan Wine Country.

Mission Hill Winery
A must-see in the Okanagan Valley is the stunning Mission Hill Winery – less than five kilometers from the Best Western hotel in West Kelowna. This family estate sits atop Mission Hill. You can’t miss it.

Architect Tom Kundig pulled out all the stops with the outdoor amphitheater adjacent to Lake Okanagan, as well as the many courtyards and terraces of Mission Hill Winery.

The most iconic is the 12-story bell tower housing the Bells of Mission Hill – four handmade bronze bells, constructed in Annecy, France.

Enter this gorgeous winery through the rose garden, and check out the rows and rows of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir vines from the terrace. Vistors are encouraged to stop by the tasting bar, open daily, or come to Mission Hill from May through October for the restaurant's "al fresco" menu.

Choose from a number of tours at this beautiful vineyard – such as the two-hour vineyard lunch tour from June through October featuring a run through the underground barrel cellar, varietal garden and estate’s vineyard. Architecture afficionados should try the one-hour Ultimate Oculus Experience – a spring to late summer tour of the architecture and wine of Mission Hill.

If you’re lucky enough to have the whole day at Mission Hill, try the eight-hour Day in the Vineyards tour – including everything from lunch and wine tastings to a driving tour of south Okanagan vineyards from May through October. Simple winery tours include the Discovery Tour and the Heritage Tour & Tasting – both one hour treks through the breathtaking Mission Hill Winery of southern British Columbia.

Township 7 Winery
Don’t miss the award winning wines of Township 7 Winery – set in the Okanagan Valley on the Naramara Bench.

This beautiful Okanagan vineyard opened in 2003 as a follow-up to the premiere of Township 7 in its Langley location during the summer of 2001. Owner Mike Raffan purchased both wineries from its founders in 2006.

Meet Mike and winemaker Bradley Cooper at the welcoming Township 7 Winery – all of eight kilometers from the Best Western hotel in Penticton.

The Township 7 tasting room is open each day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Try any number of Township traditionals like the un-Oaked Chardonnay, and their method traditionelle sparkling wine made of half Pinot Noir and half Chardonnay.

Do try other award-winning flavors like the Black Dog Cabernet Sauvignon, a favorite at the Okanagan Fall Wine Festival, NorthWest Wine Summit and Kelowna International Wine Festival.

Be certain to make this a stop on your journey through the wine trails of the Okanagan Valley. The beauty of the Naramara Bench and the unforgettable flavors make the Township 7 Winery and must-do in British Columbia.

Beaumont Family Estate Winery
Another excellent choice in West Kelowna is the Beaumont Family Estate Winery. Established in 1995 on a mere 12 acres, the Beaumont family started grapes to yield Pinot Blanc, Gamay Noir, Pinot Noir, and Gewurztraminer wines. Make the scenic drive in from Vernon and explore this charming, boutique winery – you'll want to taste their array of flavors.

The Beaumont Trio 2013 is a fabulous blend of Pinot Blanc, Gewurztraminer, and Pinot Gris. Enjoy the 2011 harvest with a bottle of their Beaumont Pinor Noir. The summer tasting room hours at Beaumont Family Estate Winery begin April 1 and run through October 31. The rest of the year, tastings are by appointment only.

Harper's Trail
Enjoy your stay in Kamloops and check out the Harper's Trail Winery. Nestled along the northern banks of the South Thompson River just east of downtown Kamloops, Harper's Trail Winery produces wines made from 100% Kamloops-grown grapes.

With varied tasting room availability throughout the year, you're sure to find a suitable time for a visit – enjoy a find bounty of exemplary wines, from their exclusive Rosé, to the very popular Chardonnay and Dry Riesling.

From mid-May through the end of September, you'll have the opportunity to reserve the Harper's Trail Winery and Vineyard for your wedding.

Blasted Church Vineyards
Founded in 2002, the Blasted Church Vineyards is another premier wine-tasting destination in the Okanagan Valley. Blasted Church Vineyards produces around 25,000 cases of wine each year – you'll find this splendid winery in Okanagan Falls, just south of Penticton. Plan your visit to the Blasted Church Vineyards accordingly – the tasting room is open from May 1 through October 31.

You'll find a wide selection of wines at Blasted Church Vineyards – don't miss the Chardonnay Musque, or any of their Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot choices.

Flow Into the Vineyards of Fraser Valley

Blue Heron Fruit Winery

Save room for dessert, because we’re heading to the Blue Heron Fruit Winery in Pitt Meadows – a 20-minute drive in from Coquitlam.

Sitting nearly 30 kilometers east of Vancouver, the Blue Heron Fruit Winery sits in the scenic Fraser Valley of the Vancouver metropolitan area and the Coast Mountains.

A partition of Flynn Farms Ltd., the Blue Heron Fruit Winery is run entirely by the Flynn family. This dedicated household has devoted their time to farming cranberries and blueberries for nearly half a century. The result: Amazing table and dessert wine.

Meet the Flynn family, and winemaker Derrick Power in the Fraser Valley for a sample of the sweet life. Open daily, the Blue Heron Fruit Winery tasting room allows complimentary tastings from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Reserve an appointment for a tour of the harvesting cranberries, or visit their impressive gift shop.

Choose from White Cranberry table wine, or the incredibly sweet signature Cranberry Wine. Pick up some iced apple wine for your next dinner party – you’re guests will be asking for it forever afterward.

Be sure to take home the perfect souvenir of the Fraser Valley, a bottle of Blue Heron’s best.

Backyard Vineyards
Any trip through Langley should yield a visit to the Backyard Vineyards. A top destination within the Fraser Valley, Backyard Vineyards has won awards in several premier wine competitions in North America, including the Los Angeles International Wine Competition, the Northwest Wine Summit, the All-Canadian Wine Championship, and the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition.

Enjoy a fine selection of your favorite reds and whites. Whether you prefer the lighter flavors of a Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, or their popular Nosey Neighbor White, or the heavier, more bold flavors of a Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon, the Backyard Vineyards has you covered. The Backyard Vineyards is a short drive form nearby Aldergrove – enjoy the tasting room during the summer hours.

Glenugie Winery
Mix a little heritage into your trip to the Fraser Valley. Visit the Glenugie Winery and meet a dedicated Scottish family in the countryside of British Columbia.

Found southeast of Vancouver – less than 10 kilometers from Langley – the family operated Glenugie Winery is worth the trip no matter where you hail from. You can also make the short, scenic drive from nearby Maple Ridge.

Sample some of the signature Glenugie flavors at the winery tasting room – and keep an eye out for that Scottish tartan of the Campbell of Argyll clan found on the label of every bottle.

Try the Glenugie Unoaked Chardonnay, or the Glenugie Winery Gamay Noir Barrel Aged. Don’t miss out on a sample of the Glenugie Christina – named after Christina Tayler, the late wife of owner Gary Tayler.

The Glenugie Winery invites guests on Mondays and Tuesdays from noon to 5 p.m., and Wednesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tours are available daily from May through August, between the hours of 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., and private tours for large groups are also available.

Enjoy the culture of Scotland in the countryside of British Columbia, and you’ll be glad you did.

Lotusland Vineyard
A trip to Lotusland is just what you need. Founded by David and Liz Avery, Lotusland Vineyard is a beautiful escape to the serenity of Fraser Valley in the town of Abbotsford. Found less than 30 kilometers from the coast, this four hectare vineyard is just over a 10-minute drive from Abbotsford. Guests are welcome throughout the year, so join the Avery family along your journey though the wineries of British Columbia.

Savor the taste of Fraser Valley with the reds and white of Lotusland wines with a bottle of Devil’s Spit or Girlsrmeaner. Get to know the faces and places of Fraser Valley from the label of every bottle from Lotusland – it’s better than a photo album.

Pacific Breeze Winery
On the banks of the Fraser River in New Westminster, the Pacific Breeze Winery is a must-see. Family owned and operated, the Pacific Breeze Winery is easily accessed from nearby Burnaby and Coquitlam.

Enjoy a guided tour and tasting at the Pacific Breeze Winery, available to the public every Saturday and Sunday – except when they harvest from September 15 – November 30. You can also call ahead and reserve a Private Tasting at the Pacific Breeze Winery.

Enjoy a wide selection of wines at Pacific Breeze Winery – the Reserve Brassfield Cabernet is local favorite, as is the Pacific Breeze Killer Cab, and the Pacific Breeze AssasZin.

River’s Bend Winery
Make your way to Surrey’s only winery – the enchanting River’s Bend Winery. Family owned and operated since the spring of 2005, this winery encompasses 30 acres of beautiful Fraser Valley in South Surrey along the Serpentine River.

No matter the time of year, this 15-acre vineyard is stunning sight. Join your new friends in the tasting room Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. where you'll enjoy complimentary wine tastings, or browsing through the gift shop.

Choose from award winning wines such as the 2007 Nouveau – a taste that took home the silver medal Chilliwack Zymurgy Award – or try some amber and indigo wines. Bring home a bottle of their 2006 Pinot Gris – winner of the North West Wine Summit silver medal, and the All Canadian Wine Championship bronze medal.

Grab a glass and have a seat on the porch for a view of the vineyard. It happens to be the best seat in the house.

Domaine de Chaberton Estates
Say you’ve only got time for one winery in the Fraser Valley. Well, that winery is the Domaine de Chaberton Estates.

A 45-minute drive from Vancouver, this is the oldest and largest winery in the valley. Founders Claude and Inge Violet opened Domaine de Chaberton Estates in the early 90s after arriving in British Columbia from France in 1975. Found 11 kilometers from the Best Western hotel in Langley, this 55-acre property welcomes all visitors.

Acquaint yourself with the vineyards of Domaine de Chaberton Estates with a winery tour. Daily tours are available to the public from February through November at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. and December to January at 3 p.m.

The estate tasting room invites guests from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. from Monday through Saturday. Private tours are available as well, just be sure to call ahead. Need a little cheese with that wine? Pack a lunch for a tranquil meal in the picnic area, or see what’s on the menu at the Bacchus Bistro.

Open Wednesday to Sunday from 11:30 am to 3 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 5:30 pm through 9 p.m., the Bacchus Bistro serves French cuisine from its "à la carte" menu. Pick your favorites and enjoy the great view from the patio.

Take home your own sample of Domaine de Chaberton Estates. Choose between the Chaberton or Canoe Cove lines at the Shop – where more than 20 different wines await a new home. Get the best out of Fraser Valley with a visit to the Domaine de Chaberton Estates – an unforgettable adventure into British Columbia’s wine country.

Stop by the Vineyards of the Big Island

Starling Lane Winery
If you’re looking to make new friends in Vancouver Island’s wine country, Starling Lane Winery is just the place. Host to several vineyards, this winery sits on the Saanich Peninsula – just under a 30-minute drive from Victoria. Four close-knit families run the Starling Lane Winery on Heritage Farm along Old West Saanich Road.

Tulips great you at the entrance to Heritage Farm. Established in the early 90s, the Starling Lane Winery consists of three vineyards: Heritage Farm Vineyard cared for by the Wrinch family, Hummingbird Vineyard run by the Houston family, and Mussio Vineyard operated by the Mussio family.

Starling Lane Winery is also associated with the Fleurie Vineyard run by – you guessed it – the Flueries up in North Cowichan. Make your way to the Starling Tasting Room for some Ortega 2010, Maréchal Foch 2009, or the always-appropriate Célébration Brut.

Take advantage of the beautiful Vancouver Island weather as you meet your new friends at the Starling Lane Winery. Your time at Heritage Farm won't soon be forgotten.

Averill Creek Vineyard
A beautiful spot in the Cowichan Valley is the Averill Creek Vineyard. The largest estate grown vineyard on Vancouver Island, Averill Creek was named after the creek cutting through the winery on the slope of Mount Prevost.

Make your way to the Olympic Peninsula and visit all 46 acres of Averill Creek Vineyard – obtained by owner and winemaker Andy Johnston in 2001. The first Averill Creek vintage was created in 2004, and released in the spring of 2006 during the grand opening.

Get a mouthful of this impressive wine from the Cowichan Valley – found less than four kilometers from the Best Western hotel in Duncan.

Averill Creek Vineyard welcomes visitors to its tasting room every weekend throughout the spring and summer. The vineyard itself, however, invites those who’d like to take a tour on a daily basis from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tour groups are welcome as well, so feel free to call and set up an appointment.

Work up a hunger during your tour of Averill Creek Vineyard, and settle in for a picnic on the patio. Lunch guests are encouraged to order Averill Creek Wine by the glass or bottle while they eat and enjoy the view of the Cowichan Bay and Saanich Inlet.

Whether walking the grounds of the vineyards on a beautiful spring day or lunching on the patio during a summer in the Cowichan Valley, Averill Creek is a must-see during your vineyard adventures.

Marley Farm Winery
Family fun is closer than you think on Vancouver Island. Good times are found at the Marley Farm Winery set in the Mount Newton Valley – a 10-minute drive from the Best Western hotel in Sidney. Join the Marley family on the Saanich Peninsula north of Victoria at their friendly boutique winery. Owners Mike and Beverly Marley, along with winemaker Eric von Krosigk, create the perfect atmosphere for your visit to the Marley Farm Winery.

Since 2004, the pride of the Marley family also happens to be Vancouver Island’s sole fruit winery. Visit this five-acre vineyard throughout the year and meet the sheep, geese, chickens, turkeys, ducks and horses of Marley Farm.

Saddle up for a horse-drawn carriage ride, or enjoy outdoor British Columbia with a walk through the vineyards. Stop by during winter hours – January to April – on Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., or visit the vineyard during the summer – each day from May to December from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Be certain to sample the big island’s best fruit wines during your visit. Choose from kiwi, blackberry, strawberry rhubarb and the exceptional Rastaberry fruit wine. Bring home a handmade gift, or some traditional grape wines. Thanks to the sheep and Pinot Grigio, you won’t want to leave Marley Farm.

Divino Estate Winery
Set in the beautiful community of Cobble Hill is the Divino Estate Winery, another pride of Vancouver Island.

Nestled in the Cowichan Valley, the Busnardo Vineyard sits on 40 acres – and is obviously the star of the Divino Estate Winery. Found near the Cowichan Bay, and 15 kilometers south of Duncan, this Cobble Hill winery is 60 kilometers south of Nanaimo and 50 kilometers north of Victoria.

Take a scenic trip along the beautiful Island Highway running up the eastern coast of Vancouver Island and introduce yourself to Joe Busnardo, owner and winemaker for Divino Estate Wines.

This Cobble Hill vineyard was founded in 1996, although Divino wines actually began in the Okanagan Valley in the early 80s. He closed up shop and resettled on Vancouver Island – deciding upon the picturesque Cobble Hill community for his new Busnardo Vineyard.

As a result, visitors may head to the winery and sip on Busnardo’s 2006 wines, such as Gamay Cabernet and Pinot Noir. Step into the tasting room on Fridays and Saturdays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. any time of year, and be sure to take something home from the wine shop.

Combine the stunning sights of the Island Highway with the taste of Busnardo Vineyard. You’ll be glad you made the trip to the Divino Estate Winery.

Zanatta Winery
Don’t miss this chance to visit the beautiful Glenora vineyards of the Zanatta Winery. Settled in the Cowichan Valley of Vancouver Island, this winery is but a 20-minute drive from Duncan.

Make your way to this 120-acre farm – consisting not inly of 30 acres of vineyards, but fruit orchards, hay fields and woodlands. Get acquainted with winemaker Loretta Zanatta and her husband Jim Moody at Zanatta Winery.

The 120-acre Zanatta Winery is an expansion of the original five acres constructed in 1986. The fruit from these Glenora vineyards have been generating since 1990, resulting in a number of unforgettable Zanatta Wines.

Feel free to sample these flavors Wednesday through Sunday from noon to 4:30 p.m. Hungry? Don’t feel like you need to leave for lunch. Stick around and check out the menu at Vinoteca On the Vineyard – the onsite eatery and wine bar established in the spring of 1996 to resemble the Zanatta’s 1903 farmhouse. Vinoteca is open for lunch from Wednesday through Sunday from noon to 4:30 p.m.

See how much Zanatta wine you can carry home with you. Wine sales are offered Wednesday through Sunday, from noon to 4:30 p.m. Pick up some Glenora Fantasia Brut sparkling wine, or some Ortega – the first wine sold at Zanatta Winery.

Whether enjoying the atmosphere of the Vinoteca wine bar or strolling through the vineyards, the Zanatta Winery is sure to never disappoint.

Lulu Island Winery

Open throughout the year, the Lulu Island Winery is one of the largest wineries in Richmond – right in the middle of the Vancouver metropolitan area. Visitors are encouraged to take advantage of complimentary tastings of Lulu Island’s many popular wines, including table wines, fruit wines, and icewines all made on site.

Lulu Island Winery orders both grapes and berries from Okanagan Valley and Fraser Valley, bringing Richmond visitors the best British Columbia has to offer. Bring back some Lulu Island wines to a Best Western hotel in Richmond, Vancouver, or Burnaby – a short and scenic drive from Lulu Island Winery.