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Vancouver Island, British Columbia
Wines and Wineries

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Map of BC Wine Regions


British Columbia Wine Regions
Okanagan Valley
Vancouver Island
Fraser Valley
Similkameen Valley


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BC's wine country is a traveler's paradise. Spread across the girth of the province, from the Rocky Mountains to the southern tip of Vancouver Island, BC's wine regions encompass some of the province's most dramatic scenery. Patchworks of vineyards and fruit orchards span the Okanagan and Similkameen valleys, BC's largest wine-producing region, offering unlimited opportunities for sightseeing, wine festivals and seasonal wine tasting.

West of the Okanagan, is the Fraser Valley, which is known for its sweet wines Located an easy drive from Vancouver, the Fraser Valley experiences less snow and milder winters than the Okanagan.

BC's Gulf Islands is the newest wine-producing region, with most of the wineries located at the southeast end of Vancouver Island. Mild warm weather helps to create its delicate fruit wines.

The ingenuity and diversity of these three regions have led to some startling accomplishments for BC winemakers. Increased competition from international winemakers has forced local vintners to become more creative over the years, producing among other things, the Okanagan ice wine. Originally a trademark of German specialty winemaking, "Eiswein" is as it sounds: a delicate wine that has been produced from iced grapes. Canada is among a handful of countries blessed with the climate conditions to create an award-wining ice wine.

There is no better way to become acquainted with BC wines than to sample one of its seasonal wine festivals. BC's warm-weather wine festivals offer the best opportunities for experiencing the Okanagan's exquisite scenery, while the winter ice wine festival at the Sun Peaks Mountain Resort attracts skiers and wine lovers from around the globe.

Most of the wineries in the three regions offer tours and tastings of their own and some offer their own holiday events and dinners. Reservations are usually recommended.


Click image above to open map of British Columbia Wine Regions in a new browser window.

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British Columbia Handbook: Including Vancouver, Victoria, and the Canadian Rockies
by Jane King, Andrew Hempstead
May 2000, Paperback, 5th edition, 430 pages, (non-fiction)
Covering recreation, accommodations, food, transportation, and sights for all regions in British Columbia.

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Frommer's British Columbia & the Canadian Rockies
by Bill McRae, Shawn Blore
June 2000, Paperback, 3rd edition, 432 pages, (guidebook)
Readers can take their pick of sunny coastal resorts, misty islands, lush temperate rain forest, rugged mountains with world-class ski slopes, alpine meadows, verdant wine country or the neighboring Banff and Jasper national parks.
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