What is it about Edmonton that draws visitors from all over the world back again and again? Well, for every time people ask about our city's appeal, there is one new unique answer. The funny thing is all these answers is that they are all correct. They are all on point but they can't, for all their diversity, quite sum up THE explanation for Edmonton's unique charms.
The most common explanation, not surprisingly, is Edmonton's climate. Being one of the most northern cities on the planet has its charms. Why? The 18 hour days in the summers matched by the 18 hour nights in the winter forces a hardy breed of fun-seeking people to get quite creative and optimistic. There's something distinctively Edmontionan as packing shorts and snow shoes in the same bag. This can do, 'go anywhere, be anywhere' mindset highlights the distinct sense of possibility that draws people from all over Canada and the world to Edmonton. Indeed, many of the big names in the food industry started out in our hardy city. At least when it comes to the food industry, New York doesn't have a monopoly on being the place that makes people who can make it anywhere else.
Our shared sense of adventure, possibility, and creativity helped make Edmonton the home of the craziest and wildest Fringe theater exposition anywhere. This is also reflected in the fact that one of our malls used to the home of submarines that outnumbered those of Canada's navy. Our city's abundance of new ideas is only matched by our inhabitants' eagerness to try those ideas out. Come visit today and get ready for a truly diverse experience. From walking up our river valley in the middle of our winter nights to our ice slides, magpie-costumed locals to our twinkle lighting and flying canoes, our city has a lot of weird, funky, unusual, and homespun charms to offer you that will last you a long time. Come visit Edmonton today and indulge your inner navigator and explorer.
Whether you prefer trains to planes or cars to trains or are most comfortable in the air, Edmonton is accessible to you. This shouldn't be a surprise because we are one of the main transportation hubs in our part of Canada and you'll be able to easily and quickly travel here regardless of which route you take. To make things even easier for international travelers, Canadian cities like Edmonton can be accessed directly through airports in countries enrolled in the eTA system (Electronic Travel Authorization). The eTA makes international travel to our city a breeze!
Accommodating up to 60 non-stop international, US, and regional destination, the Edmonton International Airport quickly processes travels from origins as diverse as London, England to Houston, Texas to Los Angeles, California quickly and easily. In fact, our airport is adding hassle-free new flights regularly. Its most recent direct link ups include Iceland, The Netherlands, and Seattle, Washington.
Since Edmonton lies in the middle of Highway 16's route, you can easily reach it whether you're coming from British Columbia or Saskatchewan. If you're driving in from Calgary, you can easily drive in via the Queen Elizabeth II highway.
One of the best ways to enjoy the scenic gifts of Canada and Edmonton is to roll in via rail. By taking the railway route to Edmonton you get to enjoy the amazing views afforded by the Great Canadian Prairies, the Canadian Rockies, and everything else in between. Rail travel is quick, easy, and hassle-free thanks to Rail Canada.
Once you're in Edmonton, getting around is not a problem because our modern street numbering system makes it easy to get from Point A to Point B. Our city's streets and by-ways are laid out very logically. For example, if you want to go north, street numbers will go up. The same applies as you make your way to the west of the city. The center of this easy to understand street numbering system and map layout is the corner of 100 Avenue and 100 Street. Pretty neat, simple, and predictable, no?
For bus and light rail (LRT) transportation, Edmonton Transit has you covered. Our system has 15 stops distributed throughout the city and makes travel to and from any point in the city convenient and quick.
Walking and Bicycling – our city has over 200 kilometers of specially designated walking and biking trails. Explore away and make your way around the city.
Pedway System – Edmonton has quite an extensive network of underground and aboveground walkways for pedestrians which connects most of the major buildings downtown to the LRT.
Rental Cars – Our city has local branches of most of the major North American auto rental companies to assist you with your short-term car rental needs.
Driving yourself – Google Maps has an updated interactive Edmonton map that makes zipping around the city in your own car quick, easy, and convenient.
Skyshuttle services – Need a quick lift to your hotel room from the airport? Our skyshuttle system has you covered!
Limousines – If you'd like to travel around town in style, we have many local limo operators who can provide the travel luxury you're looking for.
Taxis – Hailing a cab in the city is not a problem at all since Edmonton is home to many large cab fleets.
Uber – Getting transport from point A to point B in Edmonton has become so much easier and convenient thanks to the Uber mobile app. Just download this app and hail a private car and you'll be on your way.
Edmonton's spring period usually starts in April and lasts until June. The temperature starts to warm up in April and culminates with great blooms in June.
From June to August, Edmonton experiences it warmest and driest period of the year. This is partly due to the fact that the city gets up to 17 sunlight hours during the summer. The sun peeks out at around 530 AM in the morning and doesn't disappear in the night sky until well past 10PM! From time to time, July and August can bring lighting storms and thunder showers at night.
During the Fall, travelers are treated to the spectacle of witnessing many of Edmonton's many trees' leaves change colors and eventually shed. This rich colorful all natural tapestry is most visible in the city's river valley and starts midway through September. Local trees finish shedding around November.
Winter brings the coldest days in the Edmonton Calendar. Snow appears as early as the early part of November and can last until March. Most of the city's snowfall takes place between December and February though. As an added treat, the winter months give city dwellers and visitors a ringside to the vivid and memorable Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis).
If you'd like to learn or brush up on your English skills, the following English training places can help you:
Cultural Connections Institute 780-944-0792
Edmonton Catholic Schools Adult ESL 780-944-2000
Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers 780-424-7709
Metro Continuing Education 780-428-1111
Norquest College 780-644-6000
There are many other local resources you can try
If you'd like to know which program would best fit your needs, call 780-424-3545 for the
Catholic Social Services Language Assessment, Referral and Counseling Centre
The state governing Edmonton, Alberta, requires all children under the age of 16 to receive schooling. The state provides free education for all residents up to the age of 20.
For more information, please contact the relevant school resource listed below
Edmonton Public Schools 780-429-8000
Edmonton Catholic Schools 780-441-6000
Francophone School Board 780-468-6440
Private schools – Alberta Education 780-427-7235
As provided by Alberta's Provincial School Act, parents can opt to homeschool their children according to certain state-required parameters. For more information, call the resource below:
Alberta Education 780-427-7219
Searching for the right tertiary or post-high school educational institution? Check out the resources below. Alberta is the home to many accredited and respect universities, technical institutes, and colleges.
Ever since 1921, CUE has been contributing to the educational progress of the greater Alberta area. Beginning in 1987, CUE began awarding arts and sciences undergraduate degrees. CUE enables students to earn degrees in more than 45 major and minor fields of study in Management, the Arts, and Sciences. This institution also offers several graduate diplomas and certificates in addition to three masters degrees and two after-degree educational programs.
Ranked top among all Canadian universities in terms of students' sense of belonging, King's University has consistently placed at the top three among all Canadian universities in student rankings for student satisfaction with teaching quality and faculty access and connection.
Known for prizing creativity and research innovation, this university offers in excess of 65 educational programs centered on a supporting and collaborative learning environment.
This tertiary level educational institution provides learning opportunities and access for all. Armed with a solid education from Norquest College, students will have both the confidence and skills they need to make a difference in their careers and provide for the betterment of their communities, families, and society as a whole.
Built on the bedrock of a curriculum aimed at meeting the needs of Alberta's industries, students of this institution graduate with the skills and knowledge required by local employers.
Ranked consistently in the top 5 of all Canadian higher education institutions and among the top 100 universities in the word, the University of Alberta has a lot to offer students. In addition to the 500 graduate programs it makes accessible, students can enroll in over 200 undergraduate programs. Students also have their pick of over 450 student activity groups. Empowered by a vision to be one of globe's premier universities, the University of Alberta is easily the most prestigious and exclusive university in Canada.
The State of Alberta's Alberta Health Services it he sole administrator of health services in Edmonton. Call the number below for the inside scoop on available health services, any health questions you may have, family doctor referrals, and other concerns you may have. The number below offers support in 120 languages and is accessible on a 24 hour/7 day basis.
HealthLink Alberta 780-408-5465 or 1-866-408-5465
Hospital Emergency Services
If you happen to meet with a medical emergency while visiting Edmonton, don't worry, just call the relevant numbers below. Please not that you should call the numbers below only if a person's life is in danger.
Call 911 if you need ambulance services for rapid hospital transport
Grey Nuns Community Hospital 1100 Youville Drive West
Misericordia Community Hospital 16940 - 87 Avenue
Northeast Community Health Centre 14007 - 50 Street
Royal Alexandra Hospital 10240 Kingsway Avenue
Stollery Children’s Hospital 8440 - 112 Street
University of Alberta Hospital 8440 - 112 Street
If you don't have a doctor's appointment or need to see a medical professional at the last minute, try Edmonton Walk-In clinics. A quick search under Physicians & Surgeons or Clinics in the Edmonton or Alberta area Yellow Pages should give you a list of providers. Alternatively, you can do a Google search for the phrase: “Edmonton Walk-in Clinics” or “Walk-in Clinics in Edmonton”
These healthcare centres provide a wide range of health services from health and wellness, care for new babies, and child immunization. Please note that not all these centres provide the same range of services. Call ahead for more information.
Bonnie Doon 8314 - 88 Avenue 780-342-1520
Northgate Suite #2020, Northgate Centre 780-342-2800
9499 – 137 Avenue
East Edmonton 7910 – 112 Avenue 780-342-4719
Millwoods 7525 - 38 Avenue 780-342-1660
North East 14007 - 50 Street 780-342-4020
Twin Brooks 1110 - 113 Street 780-342-1560
West Jasper Place 9720 - 182 Street 780-342-1234
Woodcroft 13221 - 115 Avenue 780-342-1600
Rutherford 11153 Ellerslie Road 780-342-6800
If your family is about to have a child or you would like immigrant or refugee health services, please call the number below. They offer many health programs in a wide range of languages.
Call 780-423-1973 9538 107 Avenue
To get help with pressing life problems or need assistance getting through a personal crisis, try the 24 hour 211 crisis help line. If you're looking to talks to non-judgmental people who were trained to listen and give you social support information from accredited and relevant Edmonton social support services, call the number below.
If you are an immigrant or know immigrants who are request help with access to immigrant support and settlement services, translation services, education programs, interpretive services, employment search assistance, and more, try the resource list below.
Both the Canadian federal and Alberta provincial agencies and government arms fund local non-profit community agencies to deliver community-specific immigrant support services.
ASSIST Community Services Centre (Downtown)
ASSIST Community Services Centre (Southwest)
Catholic Social Services – Immigration
Changing Together: A Centre for Immigrant Women
Citizenship and Immigration Canada 1-800-242-2100
Edmonton Immigrant Services Association
Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers
Millwoods Welcome Centre for Immigrants
Getting around the city is very intuitive since most of its roadways are clearly numbered. Avenues only run from east to west while streets run from north to south. Thanks to this clear and predictable road naming and numbering system, it is very hard to get lost in the city.
A street address has all the information you need to get to your destination. For example, 7450-125 Ave. is at 74th Street (as indicated by the first couple of digits in the address-- 7450) and 125 Avenue. Buildings with an even number are located at avenues' north side and at streets' west side. In contrast, odd-numbered structures are located on avenues' south sides and streets' east sides. Newer parts of the city don't have all-number designations and use actual names. To find these newer (named) streets, use an Edmonton street map.
To drive around the city, you'll need the following:
Call Alberta Transportation 780-427-7013
Please visit a Registry Centre, if you would like your very own Alberta state Driver's License or would like to register your vehicle. These centres can be looked up in the Edmonton Yellow Pages under the heading “License and Registry Services.” Alternatively, you can visit www.servicealberta.ca and look for Registries.
Please note that Alberta law requires all vehicle occupants to use a seat belt. Further, kids weighing less than 40 lbs (18kg) must use a federal-approved safety seat for children.
If you plan on driving in Alberta, you are required to know all local driving rules. You will still receive a ticket regardless of your unfamiliarity with local traffic laws. Get up to speed by getting a copy of the local driver handbook from Internet via www.servicealberta.ca Do search for the phrase “Traffic Laws and Safety.” You can also stop by the closest Alberta Registry Centre near you to get a copy of the handbook
Driving under the alcohol's or drugs' influence is strictly illegal in Alberta. Similarly, driving with an open alcohol container is prohibited. Any violation of these rules can lead to you being fined or temporarily losing your driver's license.
Edmonton has a robust public transport system that efficiently transports you all over the city.
Edmonton provides both buses (Edmonton Transit Service) and light rail transport (LRT) to help visitors and residents alike access most parts of the city.
The LRT rail line runs northward to Clareview and proceeds south to the Century Park area at 111 Street. It also reaches to about the area of 23 Avenue.
Commuters looking to drive to an LRT transit station can park at the following stations: Century Park, Stadium, Belvedere, and Clareview.
All LRT stations feature TTY phones, pay phones with reduced heights, train arrival broadcasts, warning strips for platform edges, mobility ramps, escalators, elevators, and automatic doors.
Disabled patrons are also given designated parking at the Century Park, Stadium, Belvedere, and Clareview stations. Additionally, disability access public washrooms are available at the Century Park, Fort Edmonton Park/South Campus, Southgate, Central, Churchill, Coliseum, Belvedere, and Clareview LRT stations.
The Capital LRT line travels from Century Park in the city's southwest to city's north at Clareview.
The LRT's Metro line goes from NAIT located at the City's north and proceeds to either Century Park or Health Sciences/Jubilee. The option opens during certain hours of the day.
BusLink (Automated service) 780-496-1600
Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to make use of Edmonton Transit's DATS transport system. Call 780-496-4567 for more information
When it comes to the Arts and Culture, Edmonton is no slacker. The city boasts of several art galleries as well as dance and ballet companies. The city is also home to its very own opera company and symphony orchestra.
Edmonton Locals' favourite hotspots include:
Hosting over 40 major arts festivals ranging from classical music, blues, folk, jazz, theater, and visual arts, Edmonton is a feast for the senses. Our city serves up great music complete with ethnic food, street performers, and winter fun. Come visit between August and the winter months-it's bound to be always interesting!
Edmonton has a great public library system. Come visit. If you wish to check out a book, residents can request a card from their local branch. Applicants need only to present any current ID that proves their home address is in the Edmonton area. Applicants need to pay a fee for the first adult card for their household. If you can't afford the basic fee, the city provides free one year library memberships. Library materials are available in English and other languages. Contact your nearest library to check book language availability.
Abbottsfield-Penny McKee 3210 - 118 Avenue
Calder Kensington Shopping Centre, 12522 - 132 Avenue
Capilano 201, Capilano Mall, 5004 - 98 Avenue
Castle Downs 15379 - Castle Downs Road
Highlands [Temporary Location] 6516-118 Avenue
Idylwylde 8310 - 88 Avenue
Jasper Place [temporary location] 3rd Floor, 9509-156 Street
Lois Hole 17650 - 69 Avenue
Londonderry 110, Londonderry Mall, 137 Avenue and 66 Street
Mill Woods 601, Mill Woods Town Centre, 2331-66 Street
Riverbend 460, Riverbend Square, Rabbit Hill Road,
Sprucewood 11555 - 95 Street
Stanley Milner 7 Sir Winston Churchill Square
Strathcona 8331 - 104 Street
Whitemud Crossing 45, Whitemud Crossing Shopping Centre
Woodcroft 13420 - 114 Avenue
University of Alberta 1-40 Cameron Library, University of Alberta
Edmonton offers a wide range of public swimming facilities and recreation centres. Visit any of these to apply for special classes and athletic programs. The City also provides access to public sports fields, parks, and golf courses. Residents also get to enjoy major City attractions like the Fort Edmonton Park, John Walter Museum, John Jantzen Nature Centre, Muttart Conservatory, and the Valley Zoo. Visit these city-owned attractions today!
Edmontonians volunteer actively and freely give of their time and resources to raise funds for worthy causes or serve as unpaid committee or board members. They also serve at special events. To get information on how you can volunteer, call the number below.