There are many stunning locations and famous events all over Alberta. So why should Edmonton be on your top destination list? For so many reasons! Here are just a few.

Edmonton is a foodie’s paradise.

Into great food? Looking to tease your pallet with something new? Edmonton as a foodie paradise is a poorly guarded secret because we love to brag about our unique restaurants! Whether it’s in-person dining, patio-only, or takeaway as pandemic rules continue to evolve, you’ll find whatever you crave and a few new things to try. For example, Swiss to Go’s sandwiches and unique cheesecakes are press-worthy, Homefire Grill and Native Delights immerse you in Indigenous and First Nations cuisine, while Louisiana Purchase fires you up with Creole flavours (and yes, gator is on the menu).

That river valley!

Many cities rise along the banks of a river, but Edmonton has taken great care to preserve the natural beauty of the river valley. Some of the most famous attractions overlook the greenery and river; Edmonton Valley Zoo and the Chateau Lacombe’s revolving restaurant are two. But you don’t have to be at an attraction to enjoy the river valley. The city maintains more than 160 kilometres of multi-use trails where you can walk, bird watch, cycle, or inline skate. There are plenty of trees and serene views that continue to change with the seasons.

Snow Valley

Edmonton’s Snow Valley isn’t just for skiing in the winter. Rainbow Valley Campground and Arial Park make it a great place to play all year round. This year, in addition to camping in proximity to city amenities and adventuring among the soaring towers of Arial Park, you can enjoy two new attractions. First, the Whitemud Creek Mining Adventure allows guests to sluice through the sand to find “gems.” This outdoor activity honours the location’s original purpose; it was a coal mine. After mining for treasure, check out the next new feature – target golf. Here, guests will golf to hit targets set up on the hill. A patio serving food and beverages is also on-site, making this a fun day the whole family can enjoy while observing COVID protocols as mandated by Alberta Health Services.

Edmonton Valley Zoo

With so many things to explore outside, it’s easy to enjoy Edmonton Valley Zoo while COVID restrictions are ongoing. While necessary, high touch and indoor exhibits are closed, but you can still see zebras, camels, birds of prey, sea lions, and much more. The winding trails make for a lovely stroll. Washrooms are open, and two food/treat facilities are open for take-a-away food.

Photo Courtesy of Theresa Muth Photography

The Town of Stony Plain

Okay, so Stony Plain is not an Edmonton attraction. But it’s just a short drive away, about 30 minutes out of the city. What makes Stony Plain special is its adherence to its small-town identity. Stony Plain has doubled down on being the agricultural town of its roots. Main Street has recently been completely revamped. There are beautiful outdoor spaces to safely gather with planters brimming with flowers, curved benches to facilitate conversation and more. Parks and murals are found throughout town. Old fashioned light posts adorn Main Street, which is filled with boutique shops and charming eateries.  Stony Plain’s Main Street and shops are best enjoyed during business hours, as many shop owners continue the tradition of closing on the weekend for family time.

Stony Plain Murals - CIBC History Mural

CIBC History Mural, one of many in Stony Plain. Photo Nerissa McNaughton

More to Explore

This summer, there is so much to Explore in Edmonton and area. So many attractions have adapted to be safe for guests during COVID, and many attractions are already located outdoors. So when you plan your summer fun, plan to enjoy all the wonderful things Edmonton has to offer.