Who says you have to stay inside when the temperature drops and the leaves start falling? The crisp, cold air is the perfect excuse to toss on a jacket and scarf head outside! Despite our reputation as a chilly destination, Edmonton has plenty of things to do in the fall and winter, and many of these things are completely free! Such as….

Go to City Hall: Sir Winston Churchill Square and City Hall are the site of year-round fun. When it’s too cold to play for free in City Hall’s massive fountain, check out the giant chess board, skate on the rink and warm up by the public fire pits.

Go Tobogganing: The City of Edmonton wants children (or should we say, children of all ages, hint, hint!) to have a safe and fun tobogganing experience, and that is why it maintains several hills that are away from traffic and other hazards. Check out where you and your family can sled in safety by visiting this website.


Strap on the Snowshoes: Try something new! Snowshoeing is fun and great exercise. Sure, there’s a cost if you need to rent or buy snowshoes, but there is no cost to use them in these local parks.

Free Admission Day

Free Admission Day: This year’s free admission day is on September 25th, and participating venues include the Prince of Wales Armouries, the Edmonton Valley Zoo, Fort Edmonton Park, John Janzen Nature Centre, the John Walter Museum (from 1-4 PM), the Muttart Conservatory and the Scona pool. If you miss out on free admission day this year, don’t worry. It happens once a year.


Laugh and Learn with the Kids: Sign, Laugh and Learn along with Family Storytime, and Daddy & Baby Time are free parent and tot programs hosted at numerous venues, several times a month across the city. No matter where you are located, you’ll be within reach of these fun and interactive programs. Age restrictions apply, so be sure to check out the City of Edmonton’s event calendar for full details.


Go to the Library: Not only does your local library have a treasure trove of adventure, romance, western, non-fiction, fantasy and sci-fi books waiting for you to explore, but you can also borrow movies, video games and magazines. Most libraries have free programs, such as makerspace, tech time, financial wellness and adult literacy. If you haven’t been to your library for a while, spend some time browsing all the free things you and your family can do there. It’s a great place to be when you want to get out of the house but your budget says “go easy on the spending!”


Tour the Legislature Grounds: Picnic goers and sunbathers are a common sight at the Legislature grounds during the summer, but there’s just as much to see and do during the winter months, too. Free guided tours are a great way to experience the beautiful, impressive Legislature building, and by downloading a grounds map, you’ll easily be able to find the amphitheatres and the Centennial Flame, too.

Alberta Legislature Grounds. Credit: Tkyle

Alberta Legislature Grounds. Credit: Tkyle

This fall and winter, go out and celebrate the fun and exciting things Edmonton has to offer, and if you are saving money or your budget is tight, relax knowing that there are plenty of things to do for free in Capital City.