Every year, seven million people visit Edmonton in Canada. The city is full of life and entertainment for families and friends. You will find a little bit of everything, from play places for children to art and nature exhibits to flashes of history.
There’s so much that Edmonton has to offer: historic buildings, galleries, parks, a view of the northern lights, and so on.
When you visit, don’t miss these 10 best things to do in Edmonton.
1. TELUS World of Science
The TELUS World of Science is full of exhibits and activities for children and adults. Exhibits like the Indigenous Traditional Room and the Copernicus Photo Exhibit allow visitors to experience different countries and cultures.
Science exhibits take visitors from the depths of the ocean to the stars over Edmonton. There is even a development play area for young children called CuriousCity.
IMAX theatres show both educational and fun movies, and the Zeidler Dome provides an immersive experience with lasers and beautiful images. Plus, special events may be held depending on the date you visit.
2. Edmonton Valley Zoo
Don’t let the small size of the Edmonton Valley Zoo fool you. The intimate setting allows caretakers to provide the best care for the animals, and visitors love the warm and welcoming atmosphere.
There are many species of animals, including:
- Red pandas
- Birds of prey
Guests can interact closely with these and other species. The whole family can enjoy such activities, and young children can develop a love of learning about the natural world. Visitors will also learn about conservation to keep the earth and all its inhabitants healthy.
3. Alberta Legislature Building
Visiting a legislature building may sound boring, but the Alberta Legislature Building caters to visitors and provides a stimulating educational experience.
Free, public tours accommodate children and adults alike. Visitors learn about the roles of leaders, the political history of Alberta, art, and architecture.
The Alberta Legislature Building also hosts events like Canada Day, when community members can walk on the Chamber floor, enjoy performances, and partake in family activities. Family Day is full of crafts, history, and games.
The Borealis Gallery houses educational exhibits, and the Pehonan Theatre includes a 360-degree screen showing the social and political history of Alberta.
4. Fort Edmonton Park
A list of things to do in Edmonton would be incomplete without Fort Edmonton Park. Here, you will find cultural experiences, fun activities, and group events.
With the help of indigenous people, the creators of Edmonton Park established an Indigenous Peoples Experience Attraction. Stories, art, music, and text immerse visitors in the knowledge and experience of a different culture.
There are also exhibits featuring the street as it looked in 1885 and a fort of 1846. The Endless Adventure attraction is a fun, interactive, virtual experience.
Additionally, there are wagon, pony, train, and streetcar rides as well as a theatre that shows classic films. The Midway and Exhibition are full of games, rides, a maze, and a shooting gallery.
5. Art Gallery of Alberta
Many exhibits pass through the Art Gallery of Alberta, and you will need to check the website to know which exhibits will be on display when you visit. Some examples of exhibits are:
- Don’t Ask Me Where I’m From featuring post-migrant art
- Sidney Kelsie: Right In Your Own Backyard featuring art created by an Edmonton local
- Maud Lewis featuring paintings of Nova Scotia
- Comic Sans featuring work by comic artists
- Conjured Images: Spirit Photography from the turn of the 20th Century featuring photos from around the world showing ghostly apparitions
Activities for families, young children, and teenagers vary by day. There are art camps and classes for aspiring artists.
6. Muttart Conservatory
The Muttart Conservatory consists of three biomes that are arid, temperate, and tropical. Within these biomes, you will find more than 700 species of plants. The feature pyramid is home to displays and seasonal celebrations.
Drop-in programs are designed to educate children while they play and explore. Depending upon their age, children may participate in reading, sensory play, crafts, and planting. Children five years and younger play and explore in the Imagination Station.
Based on the date of your trip, you may also find that a special event is taking place.
This beautiful location can even host birthday parties, corporate events, photography sessions, wedding ceremonies, and wedding receptions.
7. High Level Bridge Streetcar
The High Level Bridge Streetcar takes visitors on a trip through history. The streetcar follows the old Canadian Pacific Railway. You will begin in the Old Strathcona area, pass through the only tunnel on this railway in Alberta, and stop at Edmonton’s Downtown.
The Edmonton High Level Bridge was in service from 1913 to 1951. There were tracks for the Canadian Pacific Railway, steam trains, and streetcars. Through the years, only one streetcar survived in Edmonton. Volunteers restored it over time, and it still runs for tourists and locals today.
8. World Waterpark
Of all the fun things to do in Edmonton, visiting the World Waterpark is the best for families. Here, you will find the world’s largest indoor wave pool, 17 water slides, a kiddie pool, and a hot tub.
Young children enjoy the play structure and the splash pad, where they can stand firmly on the ground and play with fountains that spray up from the ground. There is also a double-rider waterslide and tube slide for children who are hesitant to ride alone.
Other waterslides span from intermediate to extreme. The extreme Sky Screamer is 85 feet tall and allows sliders to ride up to 37 mph.
9. William Hawrelak Park
William Hawrelak Park is a massive park in the river valley. The park spans 68 hectares and includes open meadows and a 5-hectare lake.
There are picnic areas for relaxing and taking in the view. Plus, the playground area can keep children entertained while adults enjoy some quiet time. For a more active experience, visitors can walk or bike along the trails and skate in the winter.
You can even stop at Culina on the Lake for a great meal after a long day at the park.
Major festivals and events pass through William Hawrelak Park every year.
The largest indoor amusement park in America, Glaxyland, has attractions for children of all ages. There are many rides and play areas, including:
- A carousel
- A My Little Pony, low-speed Ferris wheel
- A Playpark for very young children
- The Dragon Wagon beginner roller coaster
- Hungry Hungry Hippos bumper cars
- Swing of the Century, a ride that lifts off the ground and spins riders in circles
- A laser maze
- A ropes course
- A target shooting game
- The world’s tallest indoor tower ride, which brings riders 120 feet high
- Havoc, a high-speed ride that flips riders around
- A Haunted Castle for older visitors
Other Notable Mentions
- Visit Elk Island National Park
- Check out the Royal Alberta Museum
- Stroll around the West Edmonton Mall
- Dine and Wine around Whyte Avenue
- Visit the North Saskatchewan River Valley or Edmonton River Valley
- Visit the Alberta Railway Museum or Alberta Aviation Museum
- Watch an Edmonton Oilers game at Rogers Place
There are so many fun things to do in Edmonton it’s hard to choose which to do first! No matter what you end up doing, you’re sure to have a fantastic time in Edmonton.