Brake for a Break on the Crowsnest Highway 3, Osoyoos to Nelson, British Columbia
By Sheliza Mitha
The Crowsnest Highway stretches some 1,150 kilometres east to west through the southern sections of British Columbia and Alberta, and offers some incredibly scenic and quaint stops along the way.
Part two of this feature about the historic Crowsnest Highway (originally built in 1932), covers some charming places to relax, have a bite and take a break while on the road from Osoyoos to Nelson, British Columbia along this idyllic country route.
Explore the rustic and history-filled Kettle River Museum in Midway, BC. Photo: Allen Jones
- Midway: About an hour’s drive (70 kilometres) east of Osoyoos is where you’ll find the Village of Midway, the Kettle River Museum and “Mile 0” of the Kettle Valley Railway. Since the museum’s grounds are set in a shaded picnic area adjacent to the highway, this makes for a convenient stop to stretch your legs and have a quick bite. The museum was originally built in 1900 and commemorates Southern BC’s rich heritage through a variety of exhibits. While here, visit the museum’s station house, hop aboard a Canadian Pacific Railway caboose and explore the other outdoor artifacts.
Browse Greenwood’s old-fashioned main street and refuel with some tasty treats. Photo: Allen Jones
- Greenwood: “Picturesque,” “quaint,” “idyllic” … are all terms you’ll hear when the topic turns to Greenwood. This picture-perfect town is a mere 13 kilometres east of Midway and is recognized as “Canada’s Smallest City.” Greenwood boasts a handful of delicious dining options, some charming historic buildings, and more history than towns three or four times its size. Of course, you may just want to browse the antique stores and stop in at the Copper Eagle Bakery in downtown for one of their delicious cinnamon buns and forget about all the history. (We’re not judging.)
Christina Lake is the perfect spot to stop, whether to enjoy the beach or visit the town centre. Photo: David Gluns / Kootenay Rockies Tourism
- Christina Lake: About an hour east of Greenwood lies the vacation town of Christina Lake. In addition to a warm lake with plenty of swimming options, Christina Lake also features a terrific Welcome Center in the centre of town (and handily just off the highway). Along with the usual traveller necessities such as brochures and maps, the centre also has a gallery with local arts and crafts, an interpretive centre and a local food section.
The community of Nelson won’t disappoint when it comes to quaint shops and eateries. Photo: Destination BC/Dave Heath
- Brilliant Suspension Bridge Regional Park: Just a half-hour’s drive southwest of Nelson, this national historic site and park offers a great opportunity to get some fresh air and check out this fully-restored suspension bridge that’s more than 100 years old. While here, enjoy a picnic, explore the trails and take in the views from the observation platform. The bridge was restored in the early 1990s and declared a National Historic Site in 1995. Fifteen years later, in 2010, the bridge was opened to foot traffic at its official Grand Re-Opening Celebration on May 22nd.
Regardless of where your journey takes you along BC’s picturesque Crowsnest Highway, there are plenty of scenic stops to take a picture (or two), explore the area and enjoy some beautiful vistas along the way.
Click here for some on ideas on where to stop along the Crowsnest Highway from the Lower Mainland to Osoyoos (or vice versa, of course).
Driving the Sea to Sky Highway soon? Click here for ideas on convenient (and pretty) stops and rest areas between Vancouver and Whistler.
Published: May 26, 2016
About the Author
Sheliza is a freelance writer and editor who enjoys blogging about her family’s adventures throughout British Columbia. For the latest on food and travel, connect with her on Twitter via @shelizawrites or visit her at www.copyprose.com.