AAA Travel Tips / 6 Off-the-Beaten-Path Things to Do in Edmonton, Alberta

6 Off-the-Beaten-Path Things to Do in Edmonton, Alberta

AAA/Katie McPhee
By AAA Travel Editor Katie McPhee
November 08, 2019
Whether you’re into nature parks or farmers' markets, there are plenty of cool things to do in Edmonton, Alberta, that aren’t your typical tourist attractions. Get inspired for your next Canadian adventure with this list.
Edmonton-themed posters and a tote bag at Hideout Distro in Edmonton, Alberta.
AAA/Katie McPhee

124 Street

124 Street between 111 Avenue N.W. and Jasper Avenue
(780) 413-6503
A great place for shopping and strolling is 124 Street, a walkable district just north of Jasper Avenue where boutiques, art galleries and indie shops are aplenty. A few places worth a stop include Hideout Distro (12407 108 Ave. N.W.) for well-curated gifts; The Prints and the Paper (10725 124 St.) for posters and Alberta-themed goods; and Bearclaw Gallery (10403 124 St.) for unique art made by Canadian First Nations, Metis and Inuit artists. If you visit the district on Thursday evenings or Sunday afternoons in summer, you’ll be just in time for the 124 Grand Market, one of the popular farmers’ markets in Edmonton.
Grassy hills overlooking the river valley and the High Level Bridge at Constable Ezio Faraone Park in Edmonton, Alberta.
AAA/Katie McPhee

Constable Ezio Faraone Park

11004 97 Ave. N.W.
Join throngs of locals exercising, picnicking and plain ol’ relaxing at Constable Ezio Faraone Park. Perched on an elevated hillside, the park overlooks the North Saskatchewan River and offers the perfect vantage point for observing the High Level Bridge and the High Level Bridge Streetcar. It’s also an access point for the Royal Glenora Stairs (a total of 202 heart-pumping steps!) and the trails of the Edmonton River Valley and Victoria Park.
The 100 Street Funicular connecting downtown to the River Valley in Edmonton, Alberta.
AAA/Katie McPhee

Edmonton River Valley

Various access points
Did you know that Edmonton is said to have the largest stretch of urban parkland in all of North America—clocking in at 22 times the size of New York City’s Central Park? The numerous parks, trails and greenspaces along the North Saskatchewan River make up the Edmonton River Valley, one of the best places to explore off the beaten path. Wondering how to access the trails from downtown? Ride the 100 Street Funicular (10065 100 St. N.W.), a glass-walled elevator that connects downtown to the river valley trail system. The free ride takes less than one minute.
A bison grazing in a grassy field at Elk Island National Park in Edmonton, Alberta.
AAA/Katie McPhee

Elk Island National Park

South entrance is 48 km (30 mi.) e. of Edmonton via Hwy. 16
Ready for a road trip? Pick up your rental car (Hertz has discounts for AAA members) and drive about 35 minutes east to Elk Island National Park, the closest national park to Edmonton. Make your first stop the Visitor Information Centre near the south entrance, where exhibits explain the history of the park and the wildlife you’ll likely encounter. Once inside, drive Bison Loop Road to see free-roaming plains bison from the safety of your vehicle (the bison herd is best spotted around dawn or dusk). After you’ve snapped some photos, continue north to Astotin Lake where you can rent canoes or explore one of the many park trails or the boardwalk over the lake.
free samples of the many varieties of organic fruits sold at the market vegetables, fruits, produce, stand, organic
AAA/Greg Weekes

Farmers' Markets

Various neighborhoods
Browse locally made goods and gifts at various farmers’ markets in Edmonton. A popular year-round option is the Old Strathcona Farmers’ Market (83 Avenue and 103 Street N.W.); held every Saturday, it features more than 130 vendors in a building next to the High Level Bridge Streetcar stop in Old Strathcona. The Edmonton Downtown Farmers Market (10305 97 St. N.W.) is open every Saturday. For a smaller setup with live music and food trucks, head to the outdoor 124 Grand Market; in summer months it sets up on 124 Street near 102 Avenue on Sundays and near 108 Avenue on Thursday evenings.
Schoolhouse with wooden desks at the Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village in Edmonton, Alberta.
AAA/Katie McPhee

Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village

50 km (31 mi.) e. of Edmonton on Hwy. 16
Take a day trip out to the Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village (it’s just down the road from Elk Island National Park, so we recommend combining a visit to these two Edmonton attractions). An open-air living history museum, the village consists of more than 35 restored houses, churches, barns and stores that portray how early Ukrainian immigrants lived from 1892 to 1930. Costumed interpreters demonstrate daily routines and speak about their challenges, offering an immersive and educational experience. You can sample authentic Ukrainian foods like homemade borshch (beet soup), holubtsi (cabbage rolls) and pyrohy (pierogies) at the concession stand.
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