Driving between Kamloops and the Shuswap is one of the best ways to experience all BC has to offer when it comes to landscapes. You’ll experience rolling hills, hoodoos, farmland, and spectacular shoreline when you day trip from Kamloops through the Shuswap.
So, while you’re staying in Kamloops plan to pack up the car for an afternoon and spend time at local farm stands, eateries, and fun oddities like a motorcycle museum and a donkey refuge.
From Kamloops, the 240-km drive on Highway 1 that loops back through Highway 97 takes about three hours. You’ll want a full day to enjoy the sights along the way. Here are 7 highlights of the journey.
Updated June 2022
Turtle Valley Donkey Refuge
When you are driving Highway 1 toward Little Shuswap Lake, turn right onto the Chase/Falkland Highway (Shuswap Road) just before Pete Murray’s Corn and you’ll find Turtle Valley Donkey Refuge. The refuge is a working farm that’s dedicated to caring for donkeys and mules that have been neglected or abused. This family-friendly spot offers visits with the donkeys (check hours in advance) and valley farmland scenery.
You’ll learn so much about this incredible animal – and maybe even fall in love! Check out their special events and even take a Donkey Care Class.
This stop will be memorable for kids and parents alike.
Dreamcycle Motorcycle Museum and Sprokkets Cafe
It is probably time for a bite to eat – we suggest stopping for a homemade soup, sandwiches, and pie at Sprokkets Cafe.
While you are there you can check out the eclectic collection of classic motorcycles at the Dreamcycle Motorcycle Museum. Dreamcycle’s owner considers each a work of art and loves to share his passion. A walk through the Motorcycle Museum is a tour through motorcycle history. Each bike is chosen for its unique style and its incredible story.
This is a lunch stop that allows the family to stay active – no arguments about sitting still – you’ve got a museum to explore!
DeMille's Farm Market
Continue down the highway and look for the water tower in the distance. When you spot the billboard sign for Demille’s Farm Market, which frequently prompts laughs from passers-by with its witty messages, it’s time to pull over.
This third-generation farm sells local produce – we know this place will look familiar if you’ve ever traveled west to Kamloops – it truly is a must stop! There is a petting zoo and a seasonal corn maze (from mid-July to September).
Grass Root Dairies
Just off Highway 1 in Salmon Arm, head out towards Silver Creek along Salmon River Road to Grass Root Dairies Farm. Take in the lovely mountain views and stop to pick up an edible souvenir at this local dairy.
It produces Gouda, Maasdammer, Parmesan, and other cheeses from the milk of its grass-fed cows. The history of this dairy dates back to 1981 when the original owners immigrated from Holland, purchased a 45-acre farm, and established a cheese farm.
Today you’ll love the locally made flavours. Don’t turn around to Kamloops before picking up some cheese – our road trip includes a stop at a winery or two so you’ll need a great pairing for your evening snack at the hotel.
Circling back to Kamloops, check out Ovino Winery, a small, peaceful vineyard that grows Pinot Gris, Pinot Meunier, Gewurztraminer, Traminette grapes, and more.
During opening hours, you can sample and learn about the wines that are available for purchase. They also make and sell hot pepper wine jelly and red wine jelly - a great gift (or souvenir from your trip) or makes for an easy delicious snack when served with cream cheese and crackers.
Blind Bay Beaches
Blind Bay Beaches (also known as Pebble Beach and Sandy Beach) are two of the most popular beaches on Shuswap Lake. Located along the shores of the lake, the cozy community of Blind Bay is known for its mild winters and hot summers.
No matter the time of year, it’s a great place to explore the area on foot before heading back to Kamloops.
To get there, turn off the Trans-Canada Highway at Balmoral Road. Proceed north for approximately 2.8 km to Blind Bay Road. Turn left and drive for 1.3 km.
Monte Creek Ranch Winery
Just outside of Kamloops, Monte Creek Ranch’s tasting room and Terrace Restaurant offer beautiful views of the Thompson Valley and Thompson River.
Monte Creek Winery is turning the unique growing conditions of our region into award winning premium wines. Situated on the biodiverse 1,200-acre property just a 10-minute drive outside Kamloops City, Monte Creek Winery offers guests a breath-taking view of 75-acres of vines.
They set their focus set on sustainability, and their wines are crafted with an understanding of the land’s geological history, the surrounding environment, and regenerative farming techniques. The tasting room is open year-round, welcoming visitors to taste, shop, and dine.
A perfect final stop on your Kamloops to Shuswap roadtrip – you can enjoy dinner and bring back a bottle (or two) to enjoy on your hotel patio in the evening.
Consult Drive BC for up-to-date information about road conditions before heading out.