Alberta’s capital, Edmonton, is called The Festival City of Canada for a valid reason: the city always finds a reason to have a good time through festivals that celebrate art, tradition, culture, food, and wine among others. The more than fifty festivals celebrated each year best define how bustling Edmonton is, but take note that there is more to this city than local parties and events. From nature-viewing to winter sports, the many facets of Edmonton make it an inviting destination for adventure lovers, honeymooners, and family getaways.
The North Saskatchewan River Valley is a famous 100-kilometer river valley park host to thrilling outdoor activities such as nature trailing and wildlife viewing. Sitting here is Fort Edmonton Park which is Canada’s largest historical park, as well as the Hawrelak Park, Valley Zoo, and many other parks serving as perfect spots for an urban escape. Due to the vast expanse of The North Saskatchewan River Valley, it is very deserving to be named as North America’s biggest city parkland. This region is for those passionate for winter activities, and as soon as the first drop of snow, people head to the river valley to ski or snowshoe, or to simply bask in the cold breeze.
Edmonton is very ideal for a family getaway, for this place has numerous attractions for all ages. For the little ones, there’s Sea Lion Park, John Janzen Nature Center, Galaxyland Amusement Park and the Telus World of Science Edmonton Observatory to name a few. Elk Island National Park, less than an hour from the heart of the city, is also a favorite spot of families, and the place is inviting for camping or cross-country skiing. There’s also Prairie Gardens & Adventure Farm, a 35-acre recreational parkland that presents old-fashioned farm activities that stir interest to all family members.
On a passive day, it becomes ideal to explore the famous Edmonton Mall, the largest shopping center and entertainment area in North America that houses local brands, upscale shops, food courts and restaurants, casinos and cinemas. This massive mall also has an artificial beach, wave pool, and an indoor lake. Also in the list of shopping destinations are the Kingsway Mall, Whyte Avenue, 124th Street, and the Downtown.
There is a very interesting story behind Edmonton, and to understand more of it, it is best to see the historic Legislative Assembly of Alberta and the Royal Alberta Museum, two of the most popular historic attractions that have an exhibit of artifacts, photographs and memorabilia of the city’s significant past. Another great option is the Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village, just a short 25-minute drive from the city center, which has an extensive blast-from-the-past display.
Edmonton International Airport is the usual entry point of visitors to Edmonton, and this airport is fast-becoming as one of Canada’s busy airports, where retail shops, hotels, and restaurants continue to sprawl within its premises. Edmonton is easy to navigate and whatever kind of transportation is used, may it be a rented car or in any public transport system, there is no challenge exploring all its corners.