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Edmonton is a family-oriented city, so there’s no shortage of things to do with kids in Alberta’s capital. Festivals, attractions, and activities abound year-round both inside and out. Here are a few of the very best for your family’s enjoyment:
Fort Edmonton Park. Immerse yourself in the earliest days of Edmonton’s history at the city’s living history park, Fort Edmonton. Complete with a replica fur-trading fort and native camp, original century-old buildings to explore, costumed interpreters, farm animals, 1920s midway, steam-powered train, and theater, it’s easy to while away an entire day wandering the unpaved streets and boardwalks of this seasonal attraction. In fact, it’s so much fun, you won’t even realize you were learning the whole time.
Elk Island National Park. Located 22 miles east of Edmonton, Elk Island National Park is the perfect spot to experience nature in central Alberta. Bring a picnic and make a day of it; with the park’s lake and floating boardwalk, dark sky preserve, extensive hiking trails, aspen forests, and meadows, it’s peaceful, beautiful, and fun to explore. And did we mention wildlife? You’ll find, elk, moose, deer, coyotes, beavers, and — most significantly — large, free-roaming herds of both plains and wood bison.
West Edmonton Mall. The city’s most clichéd attraction is also a can’t-miss for families with kids. Covering the equivalent of 48 city blocks, West Ed — as it’s known locally — is one of the world’s biggest shopping malls, complete with an indoor amusement park and waterpark. Hit the waterslides and the wave pool, and by the end of the day, everyone will sleep like a baby.
Silver Skate Festival. Winter in Edmonton is just a fact of life, so rather than hibernating, residents make an effort to get out there and enjoy it. The Silver Skate Festival happens each February at William Hawrelak Park and features snow sculptures, fire sculpture installations, a giant ice slide, sporting events, and an ever-popular nighttime folk trail through the forest.
Telus World of Science. More than your average science center, Edmonton’s Telus World of Science brings together highly interactive permanent features such as a robotics lab, health gallery, and environment gallery with special exhibits that in the past have included Body Worlds, the Titanic, and STAR WARS: Identities. Add to that Imax films, an observatory, and science demonstrations and you have a formula that kids — and adults, for that matter — can’t resist.