Although it seems like summer was just a few weeks ago, it's time to face the harsh reality that the coldest season of the year is almost upon us. Canada is infamously known for it's Arctic-esque winters, and we Albertans know that better than anyone else, especially here up North in Alberta's capital.

Winter isn't all bad, though. No matter how much the cold wind and endless piles of snow may bug you, give the next few months the benefit of the doubt and see how much you can enjoy yourself. This just so happens to be one of the best times of year for festive activities, exploring outdoors (bundled up of course), and spending quality time with your loved ones. You're not a bear, you don't need to go into hibernation as soon as the snow falls.

Even if you're not looking to venture into the great outdoors this winter, there's still lots you can do around the beautiful city of Edmonton. What better time than the present to cozy up on a romantic date with your boo, find a new favourite artist at one of the many amazing concerts that come to YEG, or, if you're ballin' on a budget, check out some of the city's best free places.

There's endless things for you to explore this season; don't let the cold get the best of you. What are you looking to do this winter?

Romantic Dates

Outdoor Activities


Free Activities


For Free Activities, click "Next".

Brunch at Cafe Linnea

Where: 10932 119 Street // Kingswayvia @edmontonliving

Cafe Linnea is a well-known brunch favourite around Edmonton. The prices are pretty reasonable, especially considering the amount and quality of the food that you get. The restaurant itself has a very light and cozy concept, which makes every date a little more comfortable.


Games Day at Table Top Cafe

Where: 2 locations in Edmonton

via @tabletopcafe

Tired of the same of coffee shop date? Try something new at Table Top Cafe. For just $5, you can play as many board games as you'd like, and trust us, Table Top has an insane selection. Located on 75th and 124th streets, Table Top is open seven days a week, and late on weekends.


Speeders Electric Prokarts

Where: 13145 149 Street // Northwest Edmonton

via @yooolanda_x

Let out your competitive side on this super fun date. Speeders offers different types of racing for drivers of all levels, so don't worry if you're not a pro. Drop-Ins are welcome, and prices range from $19 for one race to $74 for five races.


Tour Alley Kat Brewing Company

Where: 9929 60 Ave // Calgary Trail North

via @erin_allan

If you've been wanting to hop on the craft beer bandwagon for awhile, now's your chance. Alley Kat offers everything from a salted caramel ale to sweet, refreshing apricot ale. Tours are available every Thursday and Friday at 12:30, 2:30, and 4:30 p.m.


Cooking Classes at Sorrentino's

Where: Various locations

via @yegcookingclass

Learning to cook can be a real pain, but Sorrentino's makes it easy. Lessons may be a bit pricey, but the skills you learn are absolutely worth the cost. Learn how to cook all your favourite Italian dishes at one of the many lessons that are held every month. The full calendar is available on the website, linked below.


Couples Massage at Bliss Yoga Spa

Where: 5954 Mullen Way // Terwillegar South

What's more romantic than a day of pure relaxation, spent with the one you love the most? The both of you are probably stressed at this hectic time of year, and you deserve all the care you can get. A couples 60 minute massage package is priced at $260, or you can really splurge and go for 90 minutes at $360.


The Rec Room

Where: 1725 99 Street // Edmonton Research and Development Park


The Rec Room should be your go-to spot for all things fun and games. Grab some mouthwatering, classic arcade eats, have a few drinks, try out VR, ping pong, bowling, or pool. You can do it all in one day, right here.


Treat yourself at Duchess Bake Shop

Where: 10718 124 Street // Westmount

via @exploreedmonton

Who doesn't love a sweet treat on a cold day? Duchess is well-known as a must visit spot in Edmonton, not only because of their delectable menu, but also for their cozy interior, and great service. Stop in and grab a macaron!


Catch a film at Metro Cinema

Where: 8712 109 Street // Garneau

via @simread201

This cinema is great, not only for the films, but also because of the history around it. They started out as an independent theatre, and although they no longer are independent, they strive to maintain a unique and affordable viewing experience for audiences. There's always something interesting playing at the Metro.


Dance Lessons at Sugar Swing Ballroom

Where: 10019 80 Ave // Strathcona

via @sugarswing

Learning to dance is no cake walk, but Sugar Swing is here to make the experience that much better for you. They offer not only Swing lessons, but also Tap, Jazz, Balboa, and West African & Caribbean.


For Outdoor Activites, click "Next".

Ice Castles

Where: 9330 Groat Road // William Hawrelak Park

via @beforeidie

The Ice Castles are a tradition in Edmonton, so if you want to fully enjoy your holiday experience, we recommend that you check them out. Tickets and dates are yet to be released, but check the website, linked below, for more information.


Outdoor Skating

Where: Any of Edmonton's outdoor rinks

via @salif6c

It wouldn't be winter without a skate date. Edmonton has plenty of outdoor rinks, including the gorgeous one outside of City Hall, pictured above. Lace up, grab your BFFs, and hit the ice.


Where: Any of Edmonton's city maintained hills

This is another must-do this winter. Edmonton's got a ton of great spots for sledding, including Emily Murphy Park and Rundle Park. Bundle up, grab your sled, and hit the slopes. Don't forget to treat yourself to something warm afterwards!

Rabbit Hill Snow Resort

Where: D-25512 Township Road 510A // About 40 mins outside Edmonton


You don't need to go all the way to the mountains just to hit the slopes. Rabbit Hill is located conveniently close to Edmonton, and offers lessons and rentals for beginners.



Where: Any of Edmonton's city-maintained parks

There's no time like the present to pick up a new hobby, so why not try snowshoeing? It's a great way to get outside, explore your city, and stay active this winter.

Ice on Whyte Festival

Where: 10208 82 Ave // Strathcona

via @exploreedmonton

Edmonton's famous ice carving festival is back for another year. From January 25th - 28th, and February 1st - 4th, head down to Whyte Ave and admire the astounding local talent in this winter wonderland. Activities such as live music and painting are also available.


Strathcona Wilderness Centre

Where: 52535 Range Road 212 // Roughly 35 minutes outside Edmonton

via @robbenrenae

This is the ultimate YEG spot for getting outdoorsy this year. Try your hand at cross country skiing or snow-shoeing, nature watching, or winter hiking. There's no shortage of outdoor fun to be had.


Explore the River Valley Trails

Where: 10125 97 Ave // Rossdale

via @edmontonrivervalley

If you can brave the cold, you should definitely take the time to get outside and explore Edmonton's River Valley. There's plenty of beautiful sights to be seen and pictures to be taken.

Snowball Fight

Where: Rundle Park // Rundle Heights

via @tostitos006

Rundle Park is beautiful, which means it's the perfect place to have a snowball fight. If you're going to be freezing cold, you at least want a pretty view, right?

Explore Blackfoot Provincial Recreation Area

Where: Cooking Lake-Blackfoot Provincial Recreation Area // Roughly 45 minutes outside of Edmonton

via @karynwiss

If you want to make a day trip, head over to the Blackfoot Provincial Recreation Area. You can participate in all your favourite winter activities while you explore the beautiful park.


For Groupons/Getaways, click "Next".

Jump Passes at Jump N' Play

Bring out your inner child and jump around until you're too exhausted to jump anymore. Jump in the open trampoline area, play basketball, dodgeball, and have dinner at the arcade restaurant.

Price: $27

Purchase Groupon here.

Wine Tasting 

Where: ​​​​​​Sherwood Park 51526 Range Road 231

via @juliecr8v

Enjoy tasting some delicious, locally grown wines at Barr Estate Winery. The perfect wines grown by scientists to make the best tasting grapes you've ever tried!

Price: $11

Purchase Groupon here.

Luxury Staycation 

Where: Edmonton South Side

Book this luxury 3 bedroom complex for a weekend getaway in Edmonton. It's completely affordable and an amazing way to take a quick vacation without leaving the city.

Price: $94

Book your getaway here.

Paint Nite

Where: Local bars

via @katelynkurnik

Local bars in Edmonton host this super fun event that you can experience with your friends or with your S/O. Enjoy cocktails while you paint cute winter scenes!

Price: $29.50

Purchase Groupon here.

Disney On Ice 

Where: Northlands Coliseum

via @albertamamas

Watch a Disney adventure unfold in front of your eyes with extremely skilled figure skaters performing. Follow your heart and make unforgettable memories with Mickey and Minnie Mouse and all the best Disney characters.

Price: $29

Purchase Groupon here.

Whistler's Inn

Where: Jasper, Alberta

via @olgaag1992

Take a trip out to Jasper, Alberta and stay at Whistler's Inn just outside Jasper National Park. Sleep at the foot of massive mountains and take day hiking trips to see all the best wildlife in the province.

Price: $148/night

Book your getaway here.

Rocky Mountain Helicopter Tours

Where: Clearwater County

via @alexstrohl

View the Rocky Mountains from above seeing the most stunning scenery! Rockies Heli Canada is offering a 20 minute helicopter ride past towering mountains and crystal blue lakes.

Price: $395

Purchase Groupon here.

Glacier Tour 

Where: Canadian Rockies

via @brewstercanada

Brewster Travel Canada offers amazing glacier tours in the Canadian Rockies during the winter. Travel to the glacier in a special winter bus and get out and explore it once you get there!

Price: $83.55

Purchase Groupon here.

Glacier Skywalk 

Where: Jasper, Alberta

via @mgtenazas

Take a trip to Jasper and walk along the terrifying yet magnificent Glacier Skywalk. It's a glass-bottomed platform that stands 918 feet above the Sunwapta Valley with gorgeous views of the mountains!

Price: $30.82

Purchase Groupon here.

Northern Lights Getaway

Take a 5 days and 4 nights trip to Yellowknife to experience night-time Northern Lights viewing! This trip is from December 23rd-27th and includes your stay at the Explorer Hotel, breakfast, 2 nights Aurora hunting tours, 2 nights viewing in tipis, a Christmas dinner and a present, snowshoeing, dog sledding and much more!

Price: $1,161.36

Purchase Groupon here.

Ski Weekend Escape

Where: Banff Norquay

Get an all-inclusive lift ticket to Banff ski hills. This ticket includes your ski lift tickets, tubing passes and sightseeing passes for an amazing winter weekend.

Price: $28

Purchase Groupon here.

For Free Activities, click 'Next'

Candy Cane Lane

Where: 148 Street NW // West Jasper Place

via @meg.saxton

Christmas in Edmonton wouldn't be right without a walk down Candy Cane Lane. Open from December 8th - December 31st, you have plenty of opportunities to enjoy the lights and snap some cute pictures. Admission is completely free, but donations for the Food Bank are highly encouraged. Free hot chocolate is also offered on certain nights for your enjoyment.


Victoria Park IceWay

Where: 11004-12004 River Valley Road // River Valley Victoria

The Victoria Park IceWay is always an Edmontonian favourite. When it opens for the season, you'll be able to go skating from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. There's plenty of parking around the manmade rink for your convenience.


Alberta Legislature Lights

The Alberta Legislature Building is beautiful on it's own, but it become particularly beautiful at this time of year. The building and surrounding area are decorated with beautiful Christmas lights, perfect for you to admire.


Deep Freeze: A Byzantine Winter Festival

via @exploreedmonton

Deep Freeze Fest is happening on January 13th and 14th of 2018. Just because winter is technically over doesn't mean you need to stop celebrating. This year's theme is "Into The Winter Grove", and you can enjoy authentic cultural and heritage winter games.


Silver Skate Festival

Where: Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium // Garneau

via @silverskatefest

Running from February 9th - 19th in Hawrelak Park is Edmonton's Silver Skate Festival. Come explore the winter wonderland, with snow sculptures, winter sports, horse-drawn sleighs, and live performances all week long.

Where: 5954 Mullen Way // Terwillegar South


Where: University of Alberta Astronomical Observatory // Garneau

Head over to U of A on Thursday evenings for a free stargazing session. Meet and chat with real astronomers, and take a look at some amazing deep space objects.


Art Gallery of Alberta

Where: 10125 97 Ave // Rossdale

via @youraga

The AGA is always a great place to visit, what with the constantly changing exhibits and events going on. Admission is always free for anyone 17 under, as well as for any Alberta post-secondary students. If you don't fall into either of those categories, don't worry. You can get in for free from 5 - 8 p.m. every Tuesday and Wednesday.

Where: Rundle Park // Rundle Heights

Explore Elk Island National Park

via @rubiurbina

Get out of the city this winter, and spend the day exploring the wonders of Elk Island. Brave the cold and pack a picnic to enjoy, or try your hand at snowshoeing. This is also a great place for animal watching, as the park is a refuge for elk, bison, and over 250 bird species.

All is Bright Festival

Where: 124 Street, between 102 Ave and Jasper Ave

via @jack_axe_yeg

The All is Bright Festival is back again for another year of celebrations. Head down to 124th Street on November 25th from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. to participate in super fun winter activities, like axe throwing, live music, sleigh rides, s'mores making and more.


Explore The Hotel Macdonald

Where: 10065 100 Street // Downtown

via @erinerosssss

Hotels are always fun to explore, regardless. Something about Christmas time makes them seem that much more magical, though. The Fairmont Macdonald takes Christmas seriously, and it shows in their amazing décor.


For Concerts/Shows, click 'NEXT'

The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses

Where: Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium // Garneau

via @sweetnessmae

When: December 1st at 8 p.m.

Calling all Zelda fans, we've found the perfect event for you. Cosplay as your favourite character as you listen to the music from one of the most beloved video games of all time.

Purchase your tickets here.

Disney on Ice: Follow Your Heart

Where: Rexall Place // Northlands

via @timesflyphotos

When: December 2nd at 3 p.m.

You're never too old for Disney. Watch all your favourite characters perform live and tell a classic, magical Disney tale at Rexall Place.

Purchase tickets here.

So You Think You Can Dance Live

Where: Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium // Garneau

via @instagraham1973

When: December 3rd at 7:30 p.m.

You've seen the show, now you can watch some of the country's most talented dancers perform live, right here in Edmonton.

Purchase tickets here.

The Nutcracker

Where: Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium // Garneau

When: December 7th - 10th, showtimes vary by day

When this Christmas classic comes to Edmonton, you have to be there. Watch the Alberta Ballet tell this heartwarming holiday tale through beautiful dance.

Purchase tickets here.


Where: Roger's Place // Downtown

via @c_dallaire

This is sure to be an insane concert, especially with all the controversy surrounding the 4:44 album. Nosebleed seats are still available at pretty decent prices, and you'll probably be able to scalp some last minute floor seats if you look hard enough.

Purchase tickets here.

K. Flay

Where: Union Hall // Calgary Trail North

via @kflay

When: January 23rd at 7:30 p.m.

K. Flay was recently in Edmonton, opening up for Imagine Dragons at Rogers Place, and now she's headlining her own show; you won't wanna miss it.

Purchase tickets here.

Milky Chance

Where: Francis Winspear Centre for Music // Downtown

via @milkychance_official

When: January 31st at 8 p.m.

This German folk group is making their way to Edmonton, and you won't wanna miss it. Milky Chance has been one of my personal favourites for years, and I'm hoping their just as good live as they are via Spotify.

Purchase tickets here.

Portugal. The Man

Where: Francis Winspear Centre for Music // Downtown

via @portugaltheman

When: February 5th at 7 p.m.

Another one for all you indie fans out there. I was recently introduced to Portugal. The Man, and wish I had been sooner. Their obscure lyrics and super talented guitar skills make them super fun to listen to.

Purchase tickets here.

Motown The Musical

Where: Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium // Garneau

via @motownmusical

When: February 13th - 18th, showtimes vary by day.

If you're a patron of the theatre, here's one show you won't want to miss. Motown tells the story of Berry Gordy, and how he worked his way up the music industry, only to launch the careers of some of the greats, including Michael Jackson, Diana Ross, and more.

Purchase tickets here.

Tokio Hotel

Where: The Ranch Roadhouse // Calgary Trail North

via @tokiohotel

When: February 22nd at 8 p.m.

If you're gonna tell me you didn't listen to these guys during your scene phase in middle school, you're probably lying. Relive those glory days when Tokio Hotel comes to Edmonton.

Purchase your tickets here.

For Outdoor Activities, click "Next".