If you’re surprised to read about hot weather in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, then you’re not alone! Many people imagine only snow and cold weather year-round...but don't worry, that's not true. Edmonton does get cold and snowy in winter, but the weather in spring, summer, and fall we enjoy a lot of beautiful days.
When summer arrives in Edmonton, you will enjoy long, sunny days with temperatures up to +30°C. In fact, this year, Edmonton has already broken several records with its hot, sunny weather! It doesn’t get too humid, which makes it perfect weather for going outdoors to relax and enjoy your favorite summer activities, like swimming, boating, golfing, and more.
UAlberta students who stay in Edmonton over the summer are usually very impressed by the great weather and all of the activities available.
Here are our top 10 ways for you to get out and take advantage of the summer heat:
1. Visit the wading pool at Edmonton City Hall.
In front of Edmonton City Hall, you will find a beautiful pool with water fountains…and you can jump right in! The pool is open to the public, so you can wade in it and cool off in the water any time.
2. Rent a paddleboat at Hawrelak Park or the Valley Zoo.
Photo credit: edmonton.cityseekr.com
Hawrelak Park is a big park that is located about a 5 minute walk from the UAlberta North Campus. In the middle of the park, there is a big lake where you can rent a paddleboat. The paddleboats usually fit two people and they have foot pedals that you use to move the boat around (similar to when you ride a bicycle). You can also rent a paddleboat at the Valley Zoo. It’s a lot of fun and a great way to enjoy summer with your friends.
3. Take a Segway tour through the river valley!
Photo credit: www.rivervalleyadventure.com
The river valley in Edmonton is the largest stretch of urban parkland in North America. In fact, it’s 22 times as big as New York’s Central Park. One of the fun ways to explore it is on a Segway (a two-wheeled vehicle that you can stand on and ride around). You can sign up for a guided Segway tour and travel the river valley in style.
4. Go swimming one of the city's outdoor pools.
Edmonton is home to many indoor swimming pools (including in UAlberta’s fitness facilities), but in the summer, why not head to an outdoor pool? The city of Edmonton has 4 public outdoor pools located around the city. Anyone can enjoy these pools for a low admission fee.
5. Go canoeing.
Photo credit: City of Edmonton
With a river going right through the heart of the city, Edmonton is a great place to go canoeing (pronounced kah-noo-ing). A canoe is a long, slender boat that usually fits 2-5 people (depending on the size of the canoe) and you can rent one from a local business. Then, all you have to do is hop in and paddle your way down the river. It’s relaxing and a very fun way to enjoy nature.
6. Play golf.
Photo credit: City of Edmonton
For those of you who enjoy golf, Edmonton has top quality golf courses in and around the city. There is even a full golf course with a driving range located right in the the beautiful river valley.
7. Head to West Edmonton Mall for some indoor fun with air-conditioning!
If you are looking to beat the heat and head indoors, then head over to West Edmonton Mall! It’s one of North America’s largest shopping and entertainment centers and there are tons of things to do: shop, eat, play mini-golf, go on rides (including roller coasters) in the indoor amusement park, watch movies, and of course, sail down waterslides at the indoor World Waterpark!
8. Check out the wildlife at Elk Island National Park.
Photo credit: Travel Alberta
Seeing Canadian wildlife in its own habitat is thrilling. At Elk Island National Park, you can drive and hike around and see amazing animals like bison, beavers, elk, owls, and more. You can go camping around Astotin Lake, which is located centrally in the park – you may even be able to see the stunning Northern Lights as you sleep under the stars.
9. Go tubing down the Pembina river.
Photograph by: Bruce Edwards, edmontonjournal.com
“Tubing” means that you put on your swimsuit and hop in a big floating inner tube and then go floating on the water. If you travel outside of Edmonton to Pembina River, you can hop in your tube and take a magnificent trip down the river with your friends. As you float down the river, you can enjoy all of the beautiful scenery along the riverbanks. The floating trip is about 3.5 hours – what a great way to spend a summer afternoon!
10. Go to K Days!
Photo credit: Northlands Park
K Days is one of the most popular summer festivals in Edmonton. It begins with a big parade downtown and then the festival itself opens at Northlands Park (which is about a 12 minute subway ride from UAlberta North Campus). You can go on carnival rides, watch concerts (this summer, you can see performances by Lights, American Idol’s Phillip Philips, the Headstones, and more), go shopping in the Grand Emporium, eat all kinds of unique food (like red velvet mini-donuts!) and end the day by watching a fireworks display.
Article by Julia Jones-Bourque