Cities Journal

Top 20 Small Cities In Canada

Salmon Arm, British Columbia
Photo credit: waferboard / Flickr

3. Salmon Arm, British Columbia

Salmon Arm started as a Canadian Pacific Railway boom town on the shores of Shuswap Lake. According to the City of Salmon Arm’s website, the area around present day Salmon Arm was little explored until 1885, when the railway passed though.

Before long, an agricultural community sprang up at Salmon Arm, and the town was officially founded in 1890 when the federal government approved the construction of a post office.

From those humble beginnings, Salmon Arm grew into a thriving small town that is rated as one of Canada’s best places to live. The city’s website lists Salmon Arm’s population as 16,012 as of the 2006 Census. Today it is the economic center of the Shuswap Lakes region.

The main industry in Salmon Arm is four-season tourism, so residents and visitors alike have no lack of fun things to do all through the year.

Salmon Arm citizens are proud of their community; their passion for the city is seen in the many projects dedicated to preserving area wetlands or making visitors to the RJ Haney Heritage Village and Museum feel welcome. On the city’s website, you can find several listings for area attractions.

Camping is a popular activity, as well as fishing and hunting. With plenty of scenic areas surrounding Salmon Arm, outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy year-round adventures. Music lovers will enjoy the Salmon Arm Roots & Blues Festival. This event’s traditional music attracts more than 30,000 people each year.

With the nearby Shuswap Lake, you can enjoy all of your favorite aquatic activities, including salmon runs, houseboat adventures and more.

Farmer’s markets are also very popular in Salmon Arm where hungry shoppers can find a large variety of home-grown produce and locally made canned goods along with handmade arts and crafts. The Shuswap Lake region is also well known for its dairies. Salmon Arm boasts some of the tastiest cheese and ice cream made in Canada.

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