It’s been a slow start to the tourism season in the Okanagan, but Tourism Kelowna says things have started to get back to normal over the July long weekend.
Chris Shauf, director of marketing and communication for the local tourism promoter, says accommodations he spoke with reported they were at capacity, or nearly sold out for the entire weekend.
“I think some of those questions and apprehensions have passed,” said Shauf.
“Our visitor centre was getting a few phone calls the week leading up to, and they did see an increase in the volume of calls right before the long weekend. I think that was people making a final check to make sure everything was OK.”
With the sun out and temperatures in the 30s, Shauf says it was nice to see people out again experiencing the summer heat and cooling off in the lake.
“People were lining the beaches and getting out on the lake.”
He says one wine tour company reported the busiest weekend they’ve ever had, and the wineries were busy as well.
The longer winter and cool, wet spring which led to flooding, hurt in the early season, but Shauf says the the rest of the summer season is looking positive.
“Certainly we have these wonderful forecasts, the water is receding and beaches and parks are opening up. We’re going to see that positive trend continue.”