Fall tourism boosts economy

Local residents are being urged by the provincial government to participate in staycations.

It’s time to enjoy what travellers from around the world came to the Thompson-Okanagan for this summer.

Local residents are being urged by the provincial government to participate in staycations.

“It’s fall, the summer crowds have gone and it’s a great time to enjoy a staycation. It is an opportunity to fall for B.C. and enjoy our amazing province,” said Shirley Bond, jobs minister.

“I encourage British Columbians to staycation and visit one of the six diverse regions that make B.C. stand out as a world-class tourism destination.”

As an economic driver in the province, tourism employs 132,000 people, almost one in every 15 jobs in B.C. in 2013.

The sector also has more than 19,200 tourism-related businesses and paid out $4.5 billion in wages and salaries to tourism workers in 2013 – an increase of 3.8 per cent over the year before.

And according to government statistics, more people are coming to the province.

In 2014, 4.65 million international travellers came to B.C.

That is a 5.3 per cent increase, and nearly a quarter million more visitors than were welcomed in 2013.

As well, so far in 2015, year-to-date visitors are up 8.8 per cent over the same period last year.

Here are some activities for a Thompson-Okanagan staycation:

Top fall drive: Armstrong drive circle route. Enjoy fall colours, farms and amazing scenery.

Drop in and see what fall looks like in the desert at the Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre, Osoyoos.

Enjoy a Mascot Gold Mine Tour in Hedley.

Take in the R.J. Haney Heritage Village and Museum in Salmon Arm.

Shop and sample wines at Okanagan wineries.

Enjoy the Four by Four, tribute to the Beach Boys, Beatles, the Bee-Gees and Motown, Nov. 2 at the Vernon Performing Arts Centre.

“From cycling and winery tours to beaches, camping and plush resorts, the Thompson-Okanagan has everything you could want in a vacation destination without leaving B.C.,” said Eric Foster, Vernon-Monashee MLA.

“By vacationing close to home you are also strengthening our regional economies.”


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Lake Country looks at big-ticket projects

Bottom Wood Lake Road construction are the biggest investments

Hillview Elementary students Emma Li and Mina Nadeau were awarded by the Premier’s office for winning the annual holiday card contest. (Karen Rogers photo)
Vernon students’ art featured on Premier’s cards

Hillview youth chosen for annual holiday card contest

COVID-19 related deaths at Oliver, West Kelowna and Vernon senior care homes

Sunnybank, Heritage Retirement Residence and Noric House recorded deaths over the weekend

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
253 new COVID-19 cases, 4 more deaths in Interior Health over the weekend

More than 1,000 cases in the region remain active

A portion of 34th Street will be closed to through traffic as of Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021, while sewer upgrades are underway. (City of Vernon)
Sewer upgrades to close Vernon road

Motorists are to expect some delays around portion of 34th Street starting Wednesday

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry prepares a daily update on the coronavirus pandemic, April 21, 2020. (B.C. Government)
B.C. adjusts COVID-19 vaccine rollout for delivery slowdown

Daily cases decline over weekend, 31 more deaths

Interior Health confirms vaccination of priority populations has begun in Salmon Arm. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
COVID-19 vaccinations underway in Salmon Arm

Interior Health confirms vaccination of priority populations has begun

This is the location, 3240 Skaha Lake Road, of where BC Housing plans to build a four storey supportive housing project for the homeless and at risk of being homeless. (Jesse Day Western News)
Penticton mayor and MLA concerned about new BC Housing project

‘Penticton already has its fair share’ of BC Housing projects

Interior Health declared the COVID-19 outbreak at McKinney Place long term care home over Monday, Jan. 18, 2020. (File photo)
COVID-19 outbreak at McKinney Place care home declared over

‘This has been one of our most challenging outbreaks so far,’ says chief medical health officer

Penticton Bylaw officer Glenn Smith, as well as resident Zak Laycock (not pictured), received the Governor General Award from the Royal Canadian Humane Association to recognize their heroism in a summer 2019 incident. (Contributed)
Bylaw officer and Penticton resident given awards for intervening in sexual assault

Bylaw officer Glenn Smith said he was simply in the right place at the right time

A female prisoner sent Langford police officers a thank-you card after she spent days in their custody. (Twitter/West Shore RCMP)
Woman gives Victoria-area jail 4.5-star review in handwritten card to police after arrest

‘We don’t often get thank you cards from people who stay with us, but this was sure nice to see’: RCMP

An elk got his antlers caught up in a zip line in Youbou over the weekend. (Conservation Officer Service Photo)
Elk rescued from zip line in Youbou on Vancouver Island

Officials urge people to manage items on their property that can hurt animals

An Abbotsford man was killed in a motor vehicle accident on Highway 3 on Monday, Jan. 18. (Black Press file photo)
Abbotsford man killed in Highway 3 crash near Hedley

Fatality was discovered by passing tow truck driver

A Trail man has a lucky tin for a keepsake after it saved him from a stabbing last week. File photo
Small tin in Kootenay man’s jacket pocket saved him from stabbing: RCMP

The man was uninjured thanks to a tin in his jacket

Most Read