Hotels in Edmonton, Canada
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Let the Fun Begin in Edmonton
There are a number of attractions that could have put Edmonton on the international map – West Edmonton Mall, the largest shopping mall in North America, the National Hockey League’s Edmonton Oilers, a five-time Stanley Cup winning team, or the Art Gallery of Alberta, a world-class venue with exhibits to rival even the biggest galleries. Whatever it was that put the spotlight on Alberta’s capital city, there’s no doubt that it deserves all of the attention it gets. With a picturesque river valley, interesting cultural events and a small town feel in a big city, Edmonton will surprise you with its charm. Whether you’re visiting for a weekend or an extended vacation, Canada’s fifth largest city has a long list of unique hotels and urban retreats that will serve as the perfect base to explore dynamic Edmonton.
A Historic Hotel That’s Close to the Action
Edmonton may have one of the youngest populations in Canada, but it sure has a lot of old hotels. If you’re looking to get situated near some of the city’s top attractions, look no further than the Fairmont Hotel Macdonald. It has been perched atop the Saskatchewan River Valley for over 100 years, and while it is a pricier option, it’s a splurge that is well worth it. From here it’s an 8-minute walk to local landmark City Hall, which is a recommended stop on your itinerary for its unique architecture and outdoor plaza that offers a wading pool in the summer and skating in the winter. The Francis Winspeare Centre for Music is equally close, making it possible to catch a performance and be back to the hotel by bed time. The Art Gallery of Alberta is also accessible on foot from the Royal Macdonald, and it’s a sure bet for getting your arts and culture fix. The gallery houses over 6,000 works of art, with everything from photographs to contemporary paintings.
Walk Until You Drop
If you enjoy getting to know a city by walking around, a good place to do so is in Old Strathcona and on Whyte Avenue. Both of these serve as a shopping, dining and entertainment hub, and with over 600 businesses in Old Strathcona alone, plan to reserve a full day for seeing what the neighbourhood has to offer. Highlights include a buzzing farmer’s market, blossoming restaurant scene and a variety of year-round events- and there’s even a chance to take a break from it all in pretty Dr. Wilbert McIntyre Park. China Town and Little Italy also provide a pleasant backdrop to explore Edmonton, and they are conveniently located next to each other, as well as in close proximity to several budget hotels. For a way to stretch your legs and get in some great photo opportunities, a walk over the High Level Bridge is a must. You’ll be rewarded with fantastic river and city views during the day, or you might want to wait until evening to walk the bridge under the romantic glow of 60,000 LED lights. If your visit coincides with business hours, the Alberta Legislature can be accessed by the bridge, and it’s a worthwhile stop on your journey. The Legislature not only has peaceful grounds and historic architecture, it also has 45-minute tours where you can learn about the political history of Alberta and the different levels of government.
Travel Back in Time
Edmonton has some deep roots, as evidenced by the many museums sprinkled throughout the city. If you’re up for an educational opportunity, consider spending time in one or two of the expertly curated museums that will give you an informative and fun blast from the past. The Alberta Railway Museum touches on Alberta’s important railroad history, and you don’t have to be a train buff to appreciate what’s on display here. Locomotives, train cars, and railway buildings are waiting for their inspection, and it’s all aboard for train rides that come with an interpretive narrative from the conductor. At the Aviation Museum, the focus shifts to airplanes and all things aviation.
The museum’s slogan is “History takes flight”, and it certainly does with over 20 aircraft for viewing, each with a story to tell. There are also extensive archives that date back to the early 1900s. If you’d like to learn about Edmonton’s unique heritage, The Ukrainian Canadian Archives and Museum of Alberta showcases the interesting history of one of the largest ethnic groups of the Canadian prairies, and the building houses a mind-boggling array of photographs, documents and other historical artifacts. It’s no wonder that the museum had to relocate to take up a bigger space, and visitors will enjoy the extra room as they take in this important part of the city’s history. If you’re wondering where a good base for museum hopping would be, you can’t go wrong with a hotel in the downtown core. While you’ll have to drive or take public transportation to most of these museums, it’s an easy commute from the city centre.