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 Home > Travel BC > BC Cities and Towns > Thompson Okanagan > Merritt

Merritt is located 80 km (50 miles) south of Kamloops and 110 km (68 miles) north of Hope on the Coquihalla Hwy 5. Merritt is situated in the beautiful Nicola Valley - one of British Columbia's major ranching and cattle areas since the late 1800's.

"Country Music Capital of Canada"
Merritt has the honour of being called the "Country Music Capital of Canada." Every year country music is celebrated with Merritt's Walk of Stars.

Merritt Walk of Stars
If you are a music fan or just love public displays make sure you look at Merritt's Walk of Stars. A collection of signatures and handprints taken from some of Country Music's top performers while performing at the Merritt Mountain Music Fest have been imprinted throughout the sidewalks in town.

"A lake a day as long as you stay"
The Nicola Valley is also very famous for fishing offering you at least 200 lakes in the immediate area. The motto in this region is, "A lake a day as long as you stay."

Pennask Lake
If you have a good vehicle and don't mind a short drive, the Pennask Lake is a real treat. Please make sure you follow the directions from Merritt to Pennask Lake closely or go in by Headwater Lakes Road via Peachland.

Nicola Lake
One lake close by Nicola Lake has reported 26 species of fish existing in the lake with large-size Rainbow trout and Kokanee being caught regularly. Other sure fishing lakes located south of Merritt on Hwy 5A include Harmon, Corbett, Courtney and the Kane Valley Lakes.

Things to see
Things for you to see in Merritt include the Nicola Valley Museum on Jackson Avenue and the historic Baillie House, built in 1908.

Proud Ranching History
Merritt and the Nicola Valley have had a long proud ranching history in the settlement of British Columbia's heartland. To experience and live this past you have to view both the Coldwater Hotel and the Quilchena Hotel.

The Coldwater and Quilchena Hotels
The Coldwater Hotel, built in 1909, is located at the corner of Quilchena Avenue and Voght Street in Merritt. The Quilchena Hotel, operating since 1908, is located in the small settlement of Quilchena. Quilchena is situated on the east shore of Nicola Lake, 20 km (12.5 miles) north of Merritt on Hwy 5A towards Kamloops.

For driving, sightseeing trips you can visit the unique mesa formations of the Hoodoos and the narrow rock chasms of Windy Canyon, both located on Hwy 8 towards Spences Bridge. If you are interested in the rich railway heritage of the Merritt area, travel south on Hwy 5 to Brookmere and see the Kettle Valley Railway Water Tank.

Winter Sports
For outdoor recreation Merritt has it all. Winter sports include the Kane Valley cross-country ski trail area, ice fishing and snowshoeing.

For snowmobiling try the area towards Brookmere at Mount Thynne where you can find 50 km (30 miles) of maintained trails. You can more remote areas 12 miles north-west of Merritt at the Honeymoon area around Stoyoma Mountain.

Summer Recreation
During the summer there is great boating and water skiing on Nicola Lake. There is hiking, dirt biking, mountain biking and exploring around the vast amount of trails and forestry roads throughout the region.

Godey Creek
One quick hiking trail if you're travelling through, conveniently located by the Visitor Info Centre at the junction of Hwy 5A and the Coquihalla Hwy 5, is called Godey Creek.

Trans-Canada Trail - KVR
For people who enjoy biking on the Trans-Canada Trail you will enjoy exploring the sections of the KVR around Merritt. The section that goes from Merritt to Brookmere (Merritt Subdivision) is more developed with the KVR more or less going through.

NK & S
The other defunct Kettle Valley Railway right-of-way goes west from Merritt to Spences Bridge (NK & S section). Unfortunately, this section has a number of detours around washouts, uncompleted trestles and you will require permission through First Nation lands. Nonetheless you will find the trip as it meanders through the Nicola River absolutely incredible.

Merritt & Nicola Valley Guide Map
Merritt sits at the crossroads of around 7 highway systems throughout the middle of the heartland of BC. If you travel on any one of these roads you will be able to view a wide range of country with completely different eco systems and wildlife.

Merritt Information and Links: Includes; Travel, Recreation, Accommodation, Places to Eat and First Nations



Roadmap of Merritt, British Columbia
click map for larger image


Merritt Walk of Stars
Merritt Walk of Stars


Nicola Valley Stop of Interest
Nicola Valley Stop of Interest


Nicola Lake
Nicola Lake


Coldwater Hotel
Coldwater Hotel


Quilchena Hotel
Quilchena Hotel


Merritt Museum
Merritt Museum


Monck Provincial Park
Monck Provincial Park


Merritt Murals
Merritt Murals


NK&S Railway right-of-way
NK & S Railway right-of-way







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