Amid summer sunshine, sparkling waters and warm Okanagan smiles, the city of Kelowna is the Okanagan's largest and liveliest population centre, and one of Canada's most popular vacation destinations. It's such a perfect lakeshore community that it's known to some as the Summer City. If you enjoy water sports - sailing, houseboating, kayaking, windsurfing, and fishing - you may never want to leave Kelowna. Located on the east side of Lake Okanagan, mid-way between Penticton in the south and Vernon in the north, downtown Kelowna offers a spectacular landscape of lake, mountains and parks. There's a wide range of cafés, continental and ethnic restaurants, and noisy nightclubs to choose from, as well as unique shops and boutiques, heritage buildings and modern architecture, art galleries and museums, music and live theatre, and even a symphony and ballet. The original inhabitants of this Central Okanagan region were the Interior Salish people, who harnessed the area's natural resources and followed seasonal cycles of food gathering, hunting and ceremonial life. Father Pandosy settled in this area in the early 1860s, pre-empting land near Mission Creek, which was to become one of the Valley's largest farming operations. The settlement was later to be called Kelowna, meaning Grizzly Bear in Indian dialect. Early pioneers focused on cattle ranching, an industry that fed the Cariboo gold miners and other early settlers. With a new rail line reaching Okanagan Landing at the head of Okanagan Lake, the CPR sternwheeler included scheduled calls at Kelowna, a brand new townsite laid out in 1892, spurring immediate growth in the region. Kelowna was incorporated as a city in 1905, and continued to experience moderate growth through both the First and Second World Wars. The opening of the floating bridge by premier W.A.C. Bennet and Prince Margaret in 1958 paved the way for unlimited expansion of Kelowna, which still continues until today. The lake is the home of the legendary Ogopogo, the Okanagan's own version of the Loch Ness Monster. N'ha-a-itk, as the Indians called him, is said to live in an underwater cave beneath Okanagan Lake. It remains a mystery to this day, open for anyone to solve, and if you're travelling in the Okanagan this summer, keep you eyes open - you could be the one to solve the legend ... and claim the $2 million reward for doing so! With its moderate climate and year-long calendar of regattas, rodeos, triathlons and festivals, Kelowna has virtually no off-season. Whatever the season, whatever the reason, it's always a good time to visit Kelowna, where a world-class destination for business and pleasure awaits you in the heart of the Okanagan.