Whoo hooo! You’ve reserved your houseboat vacation on Shuswap Lake. You’ve gotten commitments from your group and you’ve put a deposit down for your trip…now what? We get lots of questions from first time houseboaters on what to do to prepare in the weeks leading up to your vacation. Mostly questions about how to plan for our favourite thing…FOOD!


Most of the marine beaches on Shuswap Lake are undeveloped, meaning restaurants and grocery stores are not accessible by boat along the shoreline, so it is best to be prepared when you arrive at the marina.  There is a Sea Store and Restaurant at Cinnemousun Narrows that is accessible by boat if you forgot something!

The best way to prepare for this type of vacation is to make a list of everything that you might need while you’re out on the water, then compare it with our list of what’s already on board your houseboat.  Make sure to account for all ingredients you will need for cooking (including spices and condiments, down to salt and pepper.)

It might be easiest to have the food supplied to the group rather than having each couple or family provide a meal. Get together with someone from your group and try to plan meals that are tasty, filling, and require little cooking while on the houseboat. After all, who wants to be stuck in the kitchen on vacation? Also, prepare as much food as possible in advance to keep the cooking time and cooler packing to a minimum. For example, crack eggs ahead of time, scramble them up with salt and pepper in gallon size bags and freeze them. This eliminates space for bulky cartons, and the worry of breaking eggs while transporting them in a cooler. Pre-freezing them also helps cut down on the amount of ice you need for the cooler. Throw your frozen eggs on top of a few items and voila, built in ice blocks.

Simplicity is key. Some other quick meal ideas include: tin foil dinners, hot dogs, hamburgers, grilled chicken or steak, chili and baked potatoes, etc. The possibilities are endless! Who’s hungry?

Bring lots of extra coolers filled with ice for your beverages so all the food can fit in the refrigerators and freezers supplied on the boat.


  • Bedding & Pillows
  • Towels (ones for swimming and showering!)
  • Bath mat,  hand towels and wash cloths
  • First Aid Kit – with medication for bug bites, cuts and scrapes
  • Flash Lights
  • DVD’s for rainy days
  • Games and cards
  • Insect Repellent
  • Sunscreen and After-Sun for sunburns!
  • Coolers – lots and lots of coolers with ice!
  • Auxilliary cords for connecting personal devices to the music system
  • Paper towels, napkins, tin foil, plastic containers for leftovers
  • Cooking oil
  • Spices, salt & pepper
  • Fishing equipment and fishing licences for everyone planning to fish
  • Deck or beach chairs
  • Beach games
  • Plastic bottles and/or cans for the beach (NO GLASS BOTTLES OR CONTAINERS ON THE BEACHES PLEASE!)





British Columbia is committed to keeping our lakes pristine, Quagga and Zebra Mussel free.
Please respect our lakes and boarder crossing patrols and STOP at the BC boat inspection stations.