Kelowna’s heritage is a history tied to the land and natural environment and the people who have long understood the richness of this area. Kelowna's heritage is reflected in the buildings, neighbourhoods and landscapes from these earlier eras. These are the homes, work spaces, and community gathering places created by the people who shaped and developed the city of Kelowna. View the Heritage Strategy (2007- 2016) for more information.
A Heritage Review is currently underway to address Kelowna's heritage management challenges and strengthen heritage management and planning efforts across the city.
The review involves stakeholders and representatives from several organizations, and consists of three phases:
- Phase 1 (completed July 2015): A Heritage Review Advisory Committee identified current challenges and established a long-term vision for a Heritage Council governance model.
- Phase 2 (completed November 2015): Staff met with several heritage and community organizations to discuss the proposed model and to better understand the roles of groups that are connected to heritage matters in Kelowna.
- Phase 3 (ongoing): A Heritage Council Steering Committee will develop a strategic plan, funding strategy and transition plan for the Heritage Council. The mandate, roles and responsibilities, and operational structure will be established.
Upon completion of Phase 3, staff will report back to Council with the outcomes of the strategic planning exercise and proposed guiding documents. The Heritage Council is expected to be established in 2017.
- The Central Okanagan Heritage Society (COHS)
- The Okanagan Historical Society (OHS)
- The Kelowna Museums Society (KMS)
Know of a Kelowna resident whose oral history should be collected?
The City of Kelowna and the Kelowna Museums Society is interested in expanding its current collection of Kelowna oral history.
Contact Tara Hurley, Community Archivist, and have the name added to the list.
Sit back and enjoy Kelowna's expansive heritage resources with our self-guided heritage driving tour.
In total, the route includes 19 stops through Kelowna's agricultural, commercial, industrial and cultural heritage sites as well as historic residential neighbourhoods, such as Abbott Street and Marshall Street conservation areas.
Funds for printing the tour brochures was generously provided by the Heritage Legacy Fund.
In the Bernard-Lawrence neighbourhood, just east of Downtown, there remains a concentrated inventory of heritage buildings in a variety of architectural styles favoured over the past 100 years.
The historic Bernard-Lawrence neighbourhood walking tour includes 32 buildings, 29 of which are recognized in the Kelowna Heritage Register as having significant historic value to the community.
The neighbourhood walking tour brochure was thoughtfully designed and printed by the Kelowna South-Central Association of Neighbourhoods (KSAN). The walking tour is available for pick up at City Hall, Kelowna Museums, the Father Pandosy Site and Tourism Kelowna.