The mild climate in the city of Kelowna, including in the Wilden neighbourhood, gives everyone a good reason to get outdoors and stay active all year round. This master-planned neighbourhood offers quick access to activities as varied as scuba diving in Okanagan Lake and touring a local winery. There are hiking and biking trails to explore, 18 golf courses in the area, and numerous other activities for locals to explore. Anyone who appreciates an active, outdoor lifestyle will enjoy living in Kelowna. Here are some of the best outdoor activities you can do daily in Wilden.
Water Recreation in Wilden
The 135-kilometre-long Okanagan Lake has a massive 348 square-kilometre surface area, and Kelowna is at about the mid-point of the lake. Temperatures in this lake are incredibly mild for a northern lake, making it a major feature that people can enjoy earlier in the spring and later in the fall. Water temperatures can get up to 23 degrees C in July.
People can enjoy Kelowna's best beaches on both sides of the lake, and several options are just a few minutes away from the Wilden neighbourhood. Almost all beaches have playgrounds, concession stands, and public restrooms. It's a great way to beat the heat on hot summer days.
Boaters can get out on the lake and go wakeboarding, waterskiing or fishing. Ten public boat launches are all within a 30-minute or less drive from Wilden. The two launches in Downtown Kelowna are the closest ones to the neighbourhood. There are several marinas and yacht clubs in the area for people who want to rent a boat slip instead of towing their boat to the water.
Finally, scuba diving is a fairly popular water activity near Wilden, but dry suits are recommended no matter the time of year. Okanagan Lake is more than 200 meters deep in some places, and visibility is best from the fall through the spring when fewer boats on the lake stir up silt.
Wilden Hiking & Biking Trails
The entire area around Kelowna is blessed with many kilometres of trails for hiking and biking. Even the Wilden neighbourhood has many trails that take off through the woods from cul de sacs. These trails wind through private property owned by the developers building Wilden, but residents are welcome to use them. Note that many of the trails have security cameras near the entrances and exits. All rules must be followed while hiking the trails.
One important thing to note about Kelowna's hiking and walking trails: there is a lot of wildlife in the area, with bears and mountain lions occasionally being spotted. Hikers should make plenty of noise, so they don't startle one of these animals.
Knox Mountain Park has many trails that wind through the woods and up to the peak of Knox Mountain. Wilden residents can either access these trails directly from the neighbourhood or drive south to Downtown and tackle the mountain from the other direction. The mountain's peak is 2,041 feet above sea level and provides some of the city's best views. These are primarily unpaved trails and are rated Easy to Moderate.
Two popular trails that border Okanagan Lake to the west of Wilden are the Paul's Tomb Trail and the Lochview Trail. East of the neighbourhood, the Brandt's Creek Linear Trail follows a creek along an Easy trail for several kilometres. It's perfect for jogging or cycling, without too many hills.
As mentioned above, much of the Wilden neighbourhood is still undeveloped. However, the area still has its fair share of Kelowna's best parks. Various green spaces and conservation areas have been set aside as undeveloped parklands and will likely remain that way for many years. Other parks are fully developed with playgrounds, washrooms, well-manicured lawns, drinking fountains, and paved walking trails. Here are some of the developed and undeveloped parks visitors can enjoy in Wilden.
Wilden Ridge Pond: The pond takes up most of this park's surface area. It is located near Wilden Ridge Drive and Skyland Drive. It is entirely undeveloped, with no amenities. Numerous plant life and trees surround the pond. The developers planning Wilden are creating a sustainable and environmentally friendly community, so pockets of conservation areas like this are common. Dogs are not allowed near Wilden Ridge Pond.
Skyland Open Space: This undeveloped space is located between the upper and lower portions of Skyland Drive in Wilden. This gully has not been officially designated as a park, but as more Kelowna new construction homes come to market, the city will preserve spaces like this for years to come. Dogs are not allowed.
Lost Creek Park: This is a traditional park with a lawn, sidewalk trails and playground equipment. The playground takes up most of the park, so there's no dog space here. The park is located in Lost Creek Court in Wilden.
Ballou Park: This park is situated at the base of Knox Mountain, near the end of Ballou Road. It has a playground, a good-sized lawn and some picnic tables for amenities. Like the other parks mentioned here, there are no dogs allowed.
Golf Courses Near Wilden
There are many options to choose from among Kelowna's 18 area golf courses. Here are three of the courses that are closest to the Wilden neighbourhood:
Black Mountain Golf Club - Black Mountain is a beautifully kept public 18-hole course located a few kilometres southeast of Wilden. It's a par 71 course that measures 6,408 yards from the back tees. Pro lessons and tournament play are available, and The Grill at Black Mountain serves delicious food in the clubhouse.
Kelowna Springs Golf Club: This 18-hole, par-71 course measures 6,256 yards from the back tees. This semi-private course offers a challenging round of golf for players of all skill levels. A round costs $90 in the morning and $78 in the afternoons for non-members, and members enjoy discounts on golf and meals at the Legends Classic Grill.
Sunset Ranch Golf & Country Club: This semi-private course is located about 15 minutes east of Wilden. Members get significant discounts on rounds of golf, meals and other perks. It has an indoor simulator that can be booked for use in the winter months. Green fees are $99 in the mornings and $79 in the afternoons for non-members.
Other Wilden Outdoor Activities
Here are some additional outdoor activities that people living in Wilden can enjoy.
Visit Kasugai Garden Park. This authentic Japanese garden was constructed in honour of Kelowna's sister city, Kasugai, Japan. Located at 1435 Water St., the park has tranquil waterfalls, a koi pond, stone lanterns and other impressive features. The park is closed from October 31 until early March each year.
Jump in the lake at Splash BC Kelowna. Visitors of all ages enjoy this big, inflatable water park floating on Okanagan Lake at 1600 Abbott St. Kids ages 5–8 require a chaperone at least 18 years old to accompany them.
Pet the animals at the Don-O-Ray Farm Adventure. Kids love trips to this farm and petting zoo, where they can experience some hands-on time with goats, sheep, bunnies and other farm animals. They also have a hedge maze for kids to work their way through. The farm is open from late May until the end of October every year.
Explore the best wineries in all of Canada. CedarCreek Estate Winery is about a 30-minute drive south of Wilden. Many of the wineries in the valley, including CedarCreek, have tasting rooms that are open year-round. Many membership clubs at local wineries are also available.
Take a walk on the Kelowna Boardwalk. This lakefront boardwalk is a fabulous way to explore much of the waterfront along a two-kilometre stretch. The boardwalk begins at Kelowna City Park in the south and ends at Manhattan Drive in the north.
Live in One of Canada's Favorite Outdoor Locations
Wilden is already a special development on the north side of Kelowna, and the development plans that expand through the decades to come are only going to keep increasing its attractiveness. With so many new-construction homes coming on the market, there's never been a better time to consider moving to Kelowna and the Wilden neighbourhood. The year-round outdoor adventures and mild climate make this community a true hidden gem in British Columbia.
If the opportunities in Kelowna excite you, contact the agents at KelownaHomes.ca at 250-999-9844 to get in touch with a local real estate agent who can help you find the perfect home in Kelowna today.