The dream of a “shopaholic” and the cultural capital of Canada 2007. Edmonton is the capital of Alberta, its oil heart, a city of harsh and long winters, modern architecture and the largest shopping center of the beginning of the 21st century. West Edmonton Mall is the largest shopping mall in the world today.
In such an unusual way, the world received the status of a city only 100 years ago and is rapidly developing today Edmonton.
Fort Edmonton was founded in 1795 during the expansion of the West of the Hudson’s Bay Company. The name of the fort comes from the Edmonton Estates, the English estates of Sir James Winter Lake, the then vice governor of the Hudson’s Bay Company. Edmonton is a Latinized version of the Saxon word literally meaning «happy Hamlet.»
Pages of history
After the construction of the railway at the end of the XIX century. the significance of the fort, meanwhile turned into a small town, increased significantly.
However, rapid growth in the early XX century. he owes the gold rush on Klondike and the flow of immigrants to the surrounding lands, where agriculture began to develop rapidly during that period.
In 1905, Alberta received the status of an independent province. Due to its location in the very center of this province, Edmonton has become its capital. In 1947, oil was discovered near the city, which still provides its well-being, although the central offices of most oil companies are located in Calgary.
Today Edmonton is interesting not only for representatives of the oil business, but also for lovers of rampant shopping and art. For its love of festivals and their skillful organization, the city was recognized as the cultural capital of Canada in 2007.
Every year, 30 different festivals are held in Edmonton: music, theater, art, sports and even unusual ones. For example, Stupid Summer Parade, Poetry Parade, Christmas Decorations Competition and very unusual ones — Old Town Ghost Festival and Mount Pleasant Cemetery Tour.
Elk Island National Park (Elk Island National Park, «Deer Island», 40 km east of the city on Hwy. 16) has an area of 194 km2; It is the smallest of Canadian national parks.
It was created in 1906 to preserve the stock of deer (wapiti), which was threatened with extinction. In addition, the reserve, surrounded by a fence, is inhabited by steppe and forest buffaloes, more than 230 species of birds. Hiking trails have been laid out for visitors, and camping and picnic areas have been arranged.
The town of Wetaskiwin (Wetaskiwin, 55 km south, on Hwy. 2A) is worth a visit for those who love cars and airplanes. The Reynolds-Alberta Museum, 4118 57th St. presents a huge collection of antique vehicles, cars, threshers, etc., as well as historic airplanes; part of the exposition is devoted to air flights over the Arctic.
The city center is spread out on a hill (height about 70 m), on the northern bank of the North Saskatchewan River. Its main streets are Jasper Avenue and 100th ‘Street. Modern office buildings and shopping malls are connected by underground corridors due to the winter cold.
But in the summer, streets and squares are in full swing — for example, in Winston Churchill Square (Sir Winston Churchill Square). The square itself and the adjacent quarters are called the “Arts District” (Arts District). Here are located the Winsper Music Center, the Citadel Theater, the Alberta Art Gallery and the Stanley Miller Library.
On the north side of the square stands the glass pyramid of the City Hall (City Hall); in summer, concerts and festivals are often held in front of it.
Heading north, Edmonton’s main shopping streets leave for banks and department stores one after the other. Two blocks from the square are also many shops — for example, in the pedestrian zone Rice Howard Way (100th St./101 a Ave.) or in the Edmonton City Center (102nd Ave. between 100th and 103rd St.).
On the river banks
Below, in a river valley and surrounded by parks, is the Botanical Garden (Muttard Conservatory, 9626 96th A St.). Four futuristic glass pyramids show the flora of three climatic zones — the tropics, desert, temperate latitudes.
The Provincial Museum of Alberta, 12845 102-nd Ave.) consists of several departments. The exhibition on the upper floor on the left is dedicated to the prairie Indians; rooms in the right wing — the nature of Alberta, presented in dioramas.
The fur trade, the construction of the railway, the wave of relocations at the beginning of the 20th century, the oil boom — all these important events for the province are also reflected in the museum’s exposition.
The park’s exposition is not boring, frozen museum exhibits, but literally a “time machine”: costumed performances and scenes from everyday life of that time create an immersive effect and are equally interesting for both adults and children.
Edmonton is home to the largest historical open-air history museum park — Fort Edmonton Park. Visitors will have an amazing opportunity to travel 150 years ago to the world of gold miners, fur traders and the Wild West.
Here, historically significant milestones in the development of Edmonton are reproduced: 1846 — the foundation of Fort Edmonton and its first settlers — fur traders; Edmonton streets as they looked in 1885 (1885 Street, before the railway was laid), in 1905 (the time of the Klondike gold diggers) and 1920 (the Great Depression).
West Edmonton Mall
Edmonton is proud of its past, but modern in everything, as evidenced by the Space and Science Center (World of Science, 111th Ave./142 nd St.).
An excellently organized and informative exposition in an accessible form presents the achievements of our time, scientific experiments, computer technology. The complex of the technical museum also includes a cinema M AH and a planetarium.
The appearance of the West Edmonton Mall in Edmonton is no coincidence. The symbiosis of long winter evenings available for leisure, petrodollar welfare and the fact that Alberta is the only province in Canada that does not have a sales tax (PST) has spawned this phenomenal shopping center, an eldorado for both shopping lovers and their children.
On an area of 500 thousand m2, more than 800 stores, 11 department stores, 19 movie theaters (including the SHAH) and about 110 restaurants are combined. In addition, entertainment complexes are located on its territory, including: a lake with real submarines and a model of the Columbus Santa Maria schooner, a skating rink, a saltwater aquarium, dolphin shows, a mini-golf course, a water park and a computer games center.
Inside is also the Fantasyland Hotel, where all floors and rooms are dedicated to certain topics: Hollywood, Thousand and One Nights, the era of postal carriages, etc.
Downtown Visitor Information Center , 9990 Jasper Ave, 800 / 463-4667, 425-5283, www.edmonton.com .
Gateway Park then a Visitor Information Part Center ( Stand information for tourists in the Tolmachevo airport ), Hwy 2, at the entrance to the city about 2404 Gateway Blvd SW
Aviasoobscheiis : Edmonton International Airport, in 29 km to the south from the center , www.edmontonairports . com. Sky Shuttle buses (780 / 465-8515, www.edmotontaxiservicegroup.com ) and taxis to the city.
Iron Road : VIA-Rail, 12360 121st St, 888 / 842-7245.
Bus: Greyhound, 10324 103rd St, 780 / 413-8747, www.greyhound.ca .
Red Arrow Express, 10014 104th St, 780 / 425-0820, www.redarrow.ca .
City transport: omnibuses and LRT trains (light rail) throughout the city. 496-1611.
City Tours: Out an ‘About Tours, 780 / 909-8687, w ww.outanabouttours.com .
Fairmont Hotel Macdonald, 10065-lOOTHSt, 780/424-‘181, www.fairmont.com . Historic chateau-style hotel, built in 1915. Perfectly located near the city center.
Fantasyland Hotel, / 700 — 87 TH Ave, 780 / 444-3000, www.fantasylandhotel.com . The hotel is located in West Edmonton Mall . Each floor and rooms are decorated and have a thematic context, for example, «Hollywood», «Africa», Canadian Railway. » Recommended for tourists with children.
Sutton Place Hotel Edmonton, 10235 101ST St, 780 / 428-7111, www.suttonplace.com . Elegantly decorated hotel in the city center.
Coast Edmonton Plaza Hotel , 10155 — 105 TH St , 780 / 425-5882, www . coasthotels . com . Conveniently located tourist class hotel.
La Ronde , 10111 Bellamy Hill, 11 780 / 428-6611. Panoramic revolving restaurant at the Yowne Plaza Hotel, great views of the river valley and the city.
Sunday brunch is recommended.
Ituth’s Chris Steak House, 9990 ‘asper Ave. Delicious steaks, A vibrant atmosphere and great location in the city center.
CHOP, Restaurant & Bar. Located five minutes from the Mall. modern design, fusion cuisine with a typical Alberta focus on beef dishes, there is a cocktail lounge.
Sawmill Prime Rib & Steak House. 9504 — 170 St , AB T 5 T 5 R 6. A network of restaurants specializing in steaks.
Culina Millcreek , 9914-89 Avenue NW . Fusion cuisine, pleasant atmosphere, excellent service.