Known as “The Botanical Arts City”, St. Albert has long been known as a hub for artists and makers of all stripes. As the Edmonton region’s second-largest city and one of Edmonton’s closest neighbours, there’s lots to explore and plenty of hidden gems to discover. Whether you’re a lifelong resident or making a day trip up northwest, get ready for brand-new adventures!
1) Visit the Enjoy Centre
The Enjoy centre is no ordinary mall—it’s a centre for businesses and organizations devoted to wellness and more thoughtful shopping. Find houseplants and take gardening workshops at Salisbury Greenhouse, or find locally-sourced groceries at Amaranth Whole Foods Market. The Enjoy Centre is also home to pop-up shops and special events throughout the year, including an outpost of The Makers Keep.
2) Stop by the Healing Garden / Kâkesimokamik
Opened in 2017, this small but powerful garden is one of the first of its kind in Canada, a place of remembrance honouring the survivors of the residential school system. The garden is a place designed for healing, welcoming people from all walks of life. Enjoy a moment of peace and reflection surrounded by lush local flora, looking out at the beautiful Sturgeon River.
3) Immerse yourself in art at the Art Gallery of St. Albert
This popular art gallery hosts a variety of exhibits year-round, featuring work by local, national, and international artists. Their current exhibitions include In Good Company and We are the Medicine. Bring the art home with paintings, prints, and fine jewelry from the gallery shop, which also features gifts and foodstuffs from local businesses.
4) Dig in at Connor’s Irish Pub & Grill
Combining the best of an old-fashioned Irish pub and a modern sports bar, Connor’s is the spot for both traditional pub fare—think creamy chicken-and-mushroom pot pie or a classic bangers and mash—as well as delicious new creations like the Greek Turkey Burger with tzatziki or the hearty Mexican Tots Poutine. Pair your meal with a draught or fine spirit—they’ve got one of the biggest selections around. Stop by on Wednesday evenings for Trivia Night, or rock out every Sunday afternoon with a live jam session.
5) Take in the views from the BLESS Viewing Platform
Located on the southern end of St. Albert, this wooden observation platform juts out onto Big Lake and provides a spectacular, 360-degree view of the water and surrounding wilderness. Over 235 species of birds have been spotted at Big Lake; watch for loons, peregrine falcons, and trumpeter swans or simply enjoy the open skies and shimmering waters. You can access the platform from a walking trail running along the mouth of the Sturgeon River.