United Spirits Dance Group, Osoyoos
(Don Weixl photo)

Thompson Okanagan

Aboriginal Experiences

Nk'Mip Desert Cultural Centre, Osyoos (Canadian Tourism Commission photo)

Nk'Mip Desert Cultural Centre, Osyoos (Canadian Tourism Commission photo)

Aboriginal people have lived in the Thompson Okanagan region for thousands of years.

Ranging from the desert sands of Osoyoos to the fertile lands of the Okanagan Valley, the three First Nations of the region each have their own rich cultures and traditions.

Aboriginal and cultural experiences in the Okanagan include cultural centres such as Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre in Osoyoos and Secwepemc Museum and Heritage Park near Kamloops. Other experiences available here include overnight stays in a kekuli (underground pit house) at Historic Hat Creek Ranch.

Each year Kamloops hosts the three-day Kamloopa Powwow – the largest powwow in Western Canada – which celebrates Aboriginal culture and heritage through singing, dancing and storytelling.

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3 Aboriginal Experiences in Thompson Okanagan

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Nk'Mip Desert Cultural Centre - Osoyoos

1000 Rancher Creek Rd
Osoyoos, British Columbia
V0H 1V6

Experience "The Land, the Legends and the People" at Nk'Mip Desert Cultural Centre, a cultural and outdoor desert experience. View arts and cultural exhibits, audio-visual presentations and interactive displays featuring Okanagan First Nations culture and desert plants and animals.

The 22 ha site features walking trails through the sagebrush habitat, outdoor sculptures and hands-on displays. Highlights include a reconstructed aboriginal village and in the summer, daily guided walks, cultural programs and rattlesnake demonstrations. Visit Coyote's Gifts for First Nations art, jewelry, books, clothing and giftware.

Located in an award-winning, sustainable building.


Shuswap Native Village - Cache Creek

Junction Hwy 97/99
Cache Creek, British Columbia
V0K 1H0

Long before the Gold Rush miners, settlers & ranchers arrived in this valley, people of the Shuswap Nation followed a nomadic lifestyle here. The Shuswap Native village is operated by members of the local Bonaparte (Stuctwesemc) Band & features traditional shelters, hunting & fishing gear, cook pits & a "kekuli" pit house, built half above & half underground. Our guides will show you the crafts, tools & technologies of a self-sufficient culture that has always closely integrated the natural resources of this region into their lifestyle.

Other businesses with Aboriginal Experiences


Christina Living Arts Centre - Christina Lake

1675 Hwy 3
Christina Lake, British Columbia
V0H 1E2

Christina Living Arts Centre is the region's newest & greenest facility. Solar & geothermal heating & cooling, high performance green construction standards & earth-friendly materials make this building beautiful, inside & out. A Solar Aquatics System processes all waste on-site by natural means & Arts on3 Gallery featuring local & international artisans (glass blowing), gift shop, bistro & spectacular 3D floor mural & story pole makes this a fascinating stop to explore the area's rich recreational & cultural features. The Christina Lake Visitors Information Centre is also located inside. Facility (inside & out) available for conferences, reunions, meetings & weddings. Catering available. Located in the nature park, swimming close by. Performances & musical presentations throughout the year, inside & outside (during summer months).

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