What is the SS Sicamous?
The SS Sicamous is the largest surviving ship of its kind in Canada! The inside hosts a museum that features the history of Penticton and the Okanagan Valley. The lower deck has the original steam boiler, steam engines and a model of the Kettle Valley Railway (KVR) with working miniature trains. The upper decks have been fully restored, and you can see the cabins, dining room and even the Captain’s wheel. Visits take up to an hour, and guided tours are available. You can find the ship on the beach, in Penticton BC.
Outside In the Park: In the spring, summer and autumn we have a team of volunteers working in the engine room of CN Tug #6. You will also see volunteers busily going to and from the Dredge Shed. This heritage structure houses many of the restoration activities in the warmer months! Work is also ongoing inside of the SS Okanagan Stern Saloon (the last surviving structure from a sister ship of the SS Sicamous). In addition the Society is also raising funds to raise the S.S. Naramata (the last surviving steam tug in the interior of BC) so that the hull can be repaired – and the ship returned to the water where she belongs.
Is the Museum Wheel Chair Accessible?
Yes, the second level of the museum can now be accessed using an exterior elevator. The elevator was installed thanks to partial funding from the Government of Canada’s Accessibility Fund, and the Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust. This means you can skip the stairs, just ask at the front desk, and a member of the crew will be happy to show you how to use the elevator.
Who runs the Museum?
The museum is cared for by the S.S. Sicamous Society. We have a full time staff that is led by a team of 8 volunteer directors. Funds raised from admissions are directed back towards the restoration of the SS Sicamous, and the ships in the park. Volunteers are on board year round, undertaking work in the ship, and developing the displays.
Why is the work of the Sicamous Society important?
There were once sternwheelers and tugs all over the lakes and rivers of BC. This part of our history is quickly being lost, as the ships are lost to decay, torn apart for scrap, or lost to fire. Without restoration, these physical reminders of the past would simply not survive, and would not be preserved for future generations. By undertaking these restorations, we are able to communicate their importance with the public, and raise awareness about this aspect of Canadian history.
When is it open?
Click here for opening times: open hours. The Sicamous is open almost daily (from 10am to 4pm). The museum is often closed on Saturdays (to host Weddings!) and if you would like to check, just give the crew a call at 250-492-0403 or
Where to Find the Museum
The SS Sicamous is on the beach in Penticton, BC. We pride ourselves on being easy to find! Just look for the big white paddle wheeler on the shore of Okanagan Lake.
The address for the ship is 1099 Lakeshore Drive West, Penticton, British Columbia (Canada).
Average Visit Time
Time varies depending on the group, but we suggest allowing 45 minutes to an hour for a full self guided tour of the ship.
Food and Snacks
During the summer there is a food vendor (Creperie OoLaLa) set up in the park, just beside the Paddle Wheel. They offer a selection of sweet and savoury crepes, and delicious coffee too. Other food vendors can sometimes be found nearby.
There is ample free parking all along Lakeshore drive. There is also a large parking lot just across the road in front of the LocoLanding Adventure Park. Tour buses can also pull up in front of the ship, with time for passengers to depart.
Wheel Chair Access
The SS Sicamous now has an elevator, allowing access to the primary museum areas on the second level of the ship. Some of the doorways are narrow, so a transport wheel chair is available if needed. Unfortunately no motorized vehicles are allowed in the elevator. There is a wheel chair accessible washroom on the cargo (ground) deck, close to the miniature model railway.
There is a baby changing station on the second level, in the ladies saloon.
The Children’s Wibit Water Park is on the lake in front of the ship. Just across the road is LocoLanding Adventure Park. We are a short walk from the Peach Ice Cream Shop, and downtown Penticton.