Rugged mountains. Glacial lakes. Dinosaur remains. Hoo doos. Isn’t it quite amazing how much wonder Alberta has to offer? With summer ahead of us, this is your opportunity to see it all and making Lethbridge your headquarters for Alberta vacation adventures is the smart move!
3 Reasons to Make Lethbridge Your Summer Vacation Destination:
1. One Stop to See it All
A road trip with lots of stops to see the sites sounds good in theory, but when you have kids in tow, packing and unpacking your suitcases can get old fast. Making Lethbridge your home base for adventure simplifies your vacation giving you more time to actually enjoy being on vacation. Unpack your bags once and travel out from Lethbridge to see 4 UNESCO World Heritage Sites:
- Waterton Lakes National Park – (133 km from Lethbridge) This small town set in the mountains of Southwestern Alberta shares a border with US Glacier National Park. On our visit to Waterton a few years ago, we hiked one of my favourite hikes to-date: Crypt Lake Trail. A ferry carries you across Upper Waterton Lake to start the hike and at the top of the hike you climb a ladder and traverse through a mountain tunnel to reach a glacial lake. It’s an experience unlike any other!
- Writing-On-Stone Provincial Park – (128 km from Lethbridge) This newest UNESCO site is a sacred space for the Blackfoot people. A visit here is an otherworldly adventure exploring rock formations and incredible pictographs and petroglyphs. You can also cool off in Milk River. Splash around on one of the many beaches or choose to paddle down the river.
- Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump – (71 km from Lethbridge) Immerse your family in the history of the Plains Buffalo Culture. A tourist destination of its own known for its award winning architecture, the Interpretive Centre share insights from nearly 6,000 years of area history.
- Dinosaur Provincial Park – (195 km from Lethbridge) Put on your paleontologist hat for this adventure. The stunning badlands are home to one of the richest dinosaur fossil locales in the world. An exhibition space showcases incredible finds in the area!
2. Culinary Delights
As an agri-culinary centre, Lethbridge sits in the heart of Canada’s Premier Food Corridor, which means farm to table fare is everywhere. Our vacation to Lethbridge last summer was full of fresh, diverse flavours. The Watertower Grill & Bar was a highlight not only for the food, but for the unique atmosphere. Have you ever dined inside a converted Watertower? This is your chance! Coulee Taproom was another memorable dining experience for our family. They offer a family-friendly dining experience with mouthwatering food creations. There is certainly not a shortage of delicious eats in Lethbridge.
3. Family-Friendly Attractions
The landscape alone is perfect for families to explore and a good reason to visit. A vast, sweeping river valley divides the city which is connected by the iconic Lethbridge Viaduct. The coulees and eye-catching geological formations formed by the retreating glaciers make Lethbridge unlike anywhere else in Alberta. There are trails, parks, playgrounds and more all throughout the river valley and city for families to explore (Our family loved Henderson Lake!). Plus, families will love popular attractions such as Fort Whoop-Up, a replica of the whiskey-trading fort that drew the Northwest Mounted Police to the region and The Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden which provides great family programming throughout the week.
I’d be remiss not to mention the affordability of Lethbridge. Unlike pricey mountain resorts, Lethbridge offers a range of accommodations for all budgets. And at right around 5 hours from Edmonton, it’s a destination that’s an easy drive for families. Our visit last summer to Lethbridge is one of our favourite family vacations to-date. We’re already looking forward to a return trip and I can bet that after you visit, it’ll become one of your family’s favourite vacation memories, too!
Visit the Tourism Lethbridge website to learn more about all there is to do and see in the region!