10 Awesome Reasons to Visit Edmonton

Why Alberta's capital should be on your bucket list.

Experience Canada's prairies like never before in Alberta's capital. Edmonton serves up the perfect blend of big city vibes and exhilarating outdoor adventure. Explore the vast boreal landscapes where the bison roam, then dine at some of Canada's hottest local taprooms and innovative eateries. With countless festivals and an endless list of attractions, Edmonton is the perfect place to make memories in Western Canada.

1. Edmonton has a booming culinary scene.
Take your taste buds on a journey to some of the best craft beer taprooms, hyper-local bistros and indie bakeries. Edmonton is the youngest capital city in Canada, and that means our chefs aren't afraid to experiment a little. Our restaurants, like the Duchess Bakeshop (one of Buzzfeed's top bakeries in the world), are gaining international recognition—so pack your stretchy pants!

2. They call us Festival City for a reason.
Shakespeare under an open sky
? You got it. A winter festival with sculptures made of ice and…fire? No problem. With over 50 festivals annually, there’s no shortage of excitement to fill your stay — whether it’s 30 degrees above, or below.

3. Edmonton brings the wildlife.
Elk Island National Park is home to free roaming plains bison, moose, deer, elk and over 250 species of birds. Also, both the largest and smallest terrestrial mammals in North America make their homes here, the wood bison and pygmy shrew. What are you waiting for? Gather the herd and get exploring!

4. “We the North”? No, WE the North.
Edmonton is the largest Northernmost metropolis in North America and the ultimate gateway to Canada’s wild, adventurous boreal landscapes. Our backyard has grizzly bears, waterfalls, canyons and glacier-fed lakes. Spend a couple nights in the city, then head out to the Rocky Mountains of Jasper National Park or Canada's Northern Territories for the ultimate Canadian experience.

5. We've got the Mt. Everest of indoor entertainment, shopping, and attractions.
West Edmonton Mall
is part adventure park, part entertainment complex, shopping, and dining destination. The Mall spans the equivalent of 48 city blocks and at one time had more submarines than the Canadian Navy!

6. Edmonton has an incredible hub for sports and entertainment downtown.
Head to the ICE District downtown and conquer awe-inspiring acres that include local restaurants, nightlife, a state-of-the-art casino, luxury accommodations and of course, Rogers Place. This architectural and technological marvel hosts the biggest names in music and is home to the Edmonton Oilers and Oil Kings hockey teams.

7. There’s green space, and then there’s the North Saskatchewan River Valley.
Coming in at 22 times the size of Central Park, Edmonton's river valley and park systems have over 150 km of trails waiting to be used. Cruise through North America’s largest stretch of urban parkland by foot, bike, canoe, snowshoe or even Segway.

8. Edmonton has long, glorious sunny days.
June through August, the sun can rise as early as 5:00 am and sets as late as 10:00 pm. That’s 17 hours of vitamin D, and plenty of time to pack in warm-weather activities. The sun even sticks around when the temperature drops in the winter, which makes for Instagram-worthy shots of our snow-covered landscapes.

9. Edmonton knows how to do winter right.
We make Old Man Winter proud with outdoor patios, city-wide snowball fights, deep freezer races, and our spectacular view of the Northern Lights. Cold? Yes. Boring? Never.

10. Normal is for the other guys.
We’ve always stood out from the rest of the Canadian crowd, but that’s okay. Edmontonians aren't afraid to think outside the box— just look at our boundary-pushing arts scene. We camp with bison, party under the aurora, and surf on the prairies. There’s a uniqueness to how Edmontonians do ordinary things, and we welcome you to be a part of it.

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Does staying in a 100-year-old castle tickle your fancy? How about a modern boutique inn, or jazz-age hotel within a living history museum? Edmonton's got that and everything in between. Find the perfect place to lay your head after a long day of exploring.

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