Home of North America’s biggest mall, Edmonton has a plethora of activities to enjoy with the family. Whether you’re interested in shopping, waterslides, dinosaurs, mini golf, skating, professional sports, rollercoasters, history, or a little bit of everything, this short guide will help you plan your family vacation.
West Edmonton Mall
Once known as the biggest mall in the world, West Edmonton Mall has almost every activity you could possibly imagine under one roof. If shopping is what you’re after, the mall boasts over 800 stores and would literally take a couple of days just to step foot in all of them. On the other hand, it has many activities that you wouldn’t expect in a mall such as the world’s second largest indoor waterpark, the world’s second largest indoor amusement park, a skating rink, a movie theatre, hundreds of restaurants, an aquarium, mini golf, a themed hotel, a lake, and a life-size replica of the Christopher Columbus ship that found the Americas.
Fort Edmonton Park
Travel back in time and live life like it was in the late 1800’s. Fort Edmonton Park is Canada’s largest living history museum and an interesting place to experience what it was like to live life as a pioneer. Representing the history of Edmonton, the park hosts historical structures and is staffed during the summer months by historical interpreters who wear costumes from the different eras. This is a great location for being entertained and educated at the same time.
Edmonton’s River Valley
Get out in nature by experiencing the North Saskatchewan River Valley, which is the longest expanse of urban parkland in North America and roughly 22 times bigger than New York’s Central Park. Go walking, biking, or cross-country skiing over more than 160 kilometres of well-groomed trails or check out one of the many attractions including Fort Edmonton Park (as mentioned above), the Valley Zoo, or the impressive Muttart Conservatory, which houses a greenhouse oasis of different climates around the world.
This south-central historic area is home to the city’s arts and entertainment district as well as many boutique shops. If you’re looking for a nice neighborhood to walk around along with live theatre, bars, restaurants, and buskers, this is the place to go.
Go back in time for an incredible look at dinosaurs without the danger. Jurassic Forest features more than 40 animatronic dinosaurs in what was their natural habitat. Located just minutes away from the city of Edmonton, Jurassic Forest is the perfect destination for kids and anyone interested in these prehistoric creatures.
The Space and Science Centre
Everyone can have a blast and learn a thing or two by visiting the Telus World of Science, a space and science centre that’s also home to the largest planetarium dome theatre in Canada. Walk on a human tongue, talk with a life-size robot and be amazed with the many interactive displays on hand. Before calling it a day, take your kids to space by visiting the astronomical observatory.
If you’re heading to Edmonton for some of these great activities, don’t forget to read about finding cheap hotels in Edmonton so you can save money on accommodation.
This article was written as part of the #CityLove project with Hipmunk. As a paid writer for creating short city guides, I have written about Edmonton, Vancouver, and Victoria.