September in Alberta is a magical time: the sky opens up, the harvest season kicks off, and the world bursts into the golden yellows and reds of the season. If you’re in Alberta and looking to get out, get active, and appreciate the bounty of this province, this list will have you adventuring to your heart’s desire — all across the province.
Run the Rocks
This isn’t a traditional cross-country run. It combines running with scrambling, and maybe even a little parkour. Start from the Frank Slide Interpretive Centre and make it across the rocks, to the far side and back. on September 19th at Frank Slide Interpretive Centre.
Alberta Culture Days
Alberta Culture Days will take place September 1 to 30, 2020, and will feature hundreds of free, hands-on, interactive activities that invite the public to discover their inner artist, experience their heritage, and celebrate what it means to be Albertan.
Prairie Toyota Dealers ‘Reel on Wheels’
Prairie Toyota Dealers, in partnership with Fresh Air Cinema, is offering a free movie night in various cities and towns across Alberta with all proceeds going towards local charities. Enjoy a drive-in movie near you.
Banff Ghost Walks
Het ready for Halloween with a Ghost Walk. Spend a spooktacular evening unearthing ghastly ghosts, ghouls and mysterious events lurking in the shadows of Banff’s historic streets. Take a walk on the other side and explore Banff’s hidden history on a Banff ghost walk. From haunted hotels to ghost towns, Banff is full of things that go bump in the night.
Alberta Star Party
Enjoy an evening of star gazing virtually at the annual Alberta Star Party. Due to COVID-19, the annual party is not held at Starland site. But you can always visit the Starland Recreational Area near Drumheller at night to enjoy the night sky.
Visit Some Alberta Parks That are Set to Be Closed
As part of Alberta Parks optimization, Alberta government announced that 20 twenty parks will be closed completely or partially to public access in 2020. Due to COVID-19, these plans were put on hold. Visit some of these parks before the plans are back on track.
Heritage Inn International Balloon Festival
The Heritage Inn International Balloon Festival fills the sky with colour and joy every September. If you’re in High River, this festival is sure to give your day an extra element of magic. Running from September 23th to 27th, you can either join in the fun and float into the sky, or just keep an eye out for the various shapes and colours of joyful balloons.
Maligne Lake Cruise
Enjoy Fall colours as you cruise the largest glacially fed lake in the Canadian Rockies on this 90-minute, award-winning interpretive tour in Jasper National Park. Visit world-famous Spirit Island, the crown jewel of the Park, and experience views from one of the most photographed locations in the entire Rocky Mountains.
Waterton holds immense wildlife diversity. For its size of just over 505 sq. kilometres, Waterton Lakes National Park holds the most wildlife diversity than any other national park in Canada. In fact, it is very rare to not see some sort of wildlife in Waterton, whether it be a white-tailed deer, bighorn sheep, or black bear. Visit the National Park to learn all about the animals living in the Rocky Mountains and the prairies.
See Pumpkin Kings in Manning
Visit Manning Royal Canadian Legion on September 25, 2020 and take a selfie with odd, unusual, homegrown produce and giant pumpkins! (this event might get cancelled. Verify before travelling).
The Sauerkraut Festival – Red Deer
It’s not for everyone, but those who love sauerkraut tend to really love sauerkraut. If that sounds like you, you won’t want to miss Red Deer’s Sauerkraut Festival. Located at the Jungle Farm, events will teach you how to make it, how to eat it, and what else can be done with sauerkraut. While you’re at the farm, wander through the corn maze and pick some fresh vegetables. (Scheduled for September 12).
Hard Luck Canyon – Whitecourt
A visit to HardLuck Canyon is a perfect daytrip from Edmonton. The canyon features 20 metre sandstone cliffs lining a small stream running into the McLeod River. Enjoy the sight of HardLuck Falls tumbling down the cliffs during high run-off season. Go down the stairs running down to the bottom of the canyon, hike the trails and enjoy a picnic in the woods.
Enjoy a Steak Dinner at Longview Steakhouse
Alberta beef is already famous for being the best, but if it wasn’t, this steakhouse would make it great. Using local ingredients and well known for the great service, it is a great place to make a trip to. We recommend making a reservation, as this is a popular place for both locals and tourists.
Hotels Live – Calgary
Enjoy concerts from the safety of your hotel room. This exciting entertainment concept gives concert-goers a safe new way to experience live music, utilizing hotel rooms with balconies overlooking centralized pool deck, atrium or courtyards, where hotel guests can enjoy live entertainment from the comfort of their own private balcony and then stay the night.
- Elton Rohn – The Premier Elton John Tribute on Saturday September 12, 2020 at 7pm
- Acrobat – The U2 Tribute on Saturday September 26, 2020 at 7pm
Red Deer MADE Artisan Market/Red Deer Women’s Show
Showcasing all the latest products and services sought after by mainstream women, the Red Deer Women’s Show is the largest women’s event in Red Deer and area! With over 90 exhibits, explore irresistible show specials, participate in live demos and in-booth services and more!
Waterfall Hunting in the Rockies
There are plenty of waterfalls to go looking for in Alberta thanks to the Rocky Mountains. Take advantage of the off-season on a nice September day and head out to Athabasca Falls, Sunwapta Falls, Elbow Falls, and so many more. Don’t forget a picnic or some walking shoes to make the most out of your day-trip.
Country Flair – Fort McMurray
Join for Wood Buffalo’s largest tailgate party ever! This fun night under the stars will be filled with good food and good music in the safety and comfort of your own vehicle at the Fort McMurray International Airport.
The Calgary International Film Festival
Though Calgary’s International Film Festival began as a six day event attended by 8,000 people, the event quickly took off as Calgary’s arts culture boomed. This year’s festival will feature over 90 in-cinema screenings over the 11-day festival and will include at least 80 features and shorts available to stream online. Some films will be in-cinema exclusives, while others will be available both online and in-cinema – giving audiences flexibility during the pandemic.
The Kraay Family Farm and Corn Maze
The Kraay Family Farm and Corn Maze is chock full of activities that you can spend a whole day (if not multiple) enjoying with the family. From the Grain Train to the Pumpkin Cannon to pig races to jumping pillows, this is undoubtedly the place to be come harvest season.
Flannel & Feast Festival – Sylvan Lake
Visit Sylvan Lake on September 26 for a celebration of heritage, arts, and culture filled with a variety of activities, food, and festivities. More Info TBA. (this is scheduled to take place, but might get cancelled.)
Lake Agnes Tea House in Lake Louise
Lake Agnes Tea House has been rated one of the top restaurants in Lake Louise, though it’s not as easy to get to as some. Described as “worth the climb”, this Tea House is at the top of a 2.25 mile hike with a 400 metre elevation gain — but the views from the top are as splendid as the food. Soups, baked goods, and a plethora of treats await you, though keep in mind that this tea room is cash only.
The Most Beautiful Art Tour in Alberta
In the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, dotted along Highway 22 (the Cowboy Trail) and Highway 2A, there is a community of artists, craftspeople and galleries who celebrate creativity and supporting each other’s talents. You are invited to join in and go for a tour of these galleries and private studios located in the stunningly beautiful foothills of southern Alberta!
Enjoy the Night Sky at Lakeland
See shooting stars & northern lights! Enjoy a night out at Lakeland Prov. Rec. Area. Details
Traverse Iron Horse Trail
Explore northeastern Alberta on Iron Horse Trail and see wild horses, moose and other wild animals as you enjoy the crisp cool air of autumn as you hike or zoom on an ATV. Iron Horse Trail traverses 300kms of Alberta countryside from Smoky Lake to Heinsburg to Cold Lake.
Prairie Grid Market – Calgary
Join Eat North on the weekend of Sept. 26 and 27 at Carter Cadillac in Calgary for a special pop-up market concept that will be brimming with unique food, drink, kitchenwares, visual art, music and more! The Prairie Grid Market will feature a wide array of food and drink vendors, including independent restaurants offering packaged products not typically available at their restaurants.
The Larch Hikes – Banff
Larch Valley is routinely acclaimed as one of the best hikes in Alberta during the fall. Take advantage of any pre-snow September days and come up to see the glorious colours that unfold across the province. The foliage views here will take your breath away. You can stay on the trail as long as you need before turning back, but the full 12 kilometres take about 7 hours to complete.
Halloweekends – Calgary
Celebrate Halloween early and enjoy a trip to Calaway Park for the annual Halloweekends. Dress up as your favourite character and enjoy tricks and treats and spook-tacular rides. There will be face painting, scavenger hunt, fun family photo opportunities and more!
Drive-Thru Ribfests – Calgary and Lethbridge
4 award winning BBQ teams will be in attendance serving ribs, pulled pork, chicken, sausage, and everything else that ribfest lovers look forward to every year. Sept 11 to 13 @ Calgary and Sept 18 to 20 @ Lethbridge
MacKay’s Ice Cream in Cochrane
Located in historic downtown Cochrane is the famous MacKay’s Ice Cream. People from all over Alberta travel to get a taste of the homemade ice cream made in unique flavours, including the new Jolly Rancher flavour, Keso, and Haskap Berry. The lines through the summer tend to be long but quiet down a little once September rolls around. This is the perfect time to get that last cone in before winter. Details
Witchcraft & Wizardry – Calgary & Edmonton
This spell-binding outdoor adventure game will take your team on a mysterious and magical journey across town. Work with your team-mates to crack the clues, solve the puzzles and save the realm. Will you be able to solve the mystery in time? Calgary & Edmonton
Lake Newell Marsh & Nature Trails – Newell County
Take in this ecologically diverse area by visiting the Lake Newell Marsh and Nature Trails. Birdwatchers will appreciate the vast variety of bird species, along with other wildlife. Try and visit during the spring and fall migrations for a unique birding experience. Cyclists and hikers will love the trails along the marsh as well.
U-Pick Pumpkins – Gibbons
Bring your family for the farm for a good ol’ fashioned pumpkin u-pick and hay ride around the farm! This is the perfect way to get outdoors with your family, enjoy the wide open spaces on the farm, and learn a bit about how pumpkins grow.
Little Bow Provincial Park – Vulcan
Plan a trip to Little Bow Provincial Park, a perfect place to stop and camp on your Southern Alberta adventure. Located near the quaint town of Vulcan, this park has a beach and a breezy reservoir for sailing and windsurfing. Visitors can also enjoy the shaded paths through the campground, and try and catch of the rare peregrine falcon, known to nest along the reservoir’s shoreline.
Beehive Natural Area
Enjoy this amazing area surrounding Beehive Mountain. Day use is currently permitted and there’s a lot of amazing creatures to keep an eye out for while you hike. Birding, fishing, and wildlife spotting are all common in the Beehive Natural Area.
Romantic Getaway to David Thomson Country
If you are a fan of fall, then a getaway to David Thomson Country is an ideal romantic getaway. Whether you want to get away from it all and just relax, go on a romantic adventure for two, or combine a mixture of relaxation and adventure, you will find what you are looking for in David Thompson Country.
Take your visit to Jasper National Park to new heights with this ride aboard the area’s famous Jasper SkyTram. Soar above the park’s sub-alpine vegetation, watching for wildlife down below, as you gently climb towards the upper station located at 7,425 feet (2,263m) above sea level.
J.J. Collett Natural Area – Lacombe
Spot a variety of bird species and animals like coyotes, porcupines when hiking through the 635 acres of aspen and spruce forest, meadows and sand dunes that constitute JJ Collett Natural area.
U of A History and Haunted Walking Tour – Edmonton
A little education can be a ghastly business! The University of Alberta, a center for academics and higher learning, has more than its fair share of ghosts, urban legends, and unexplained events. Explore the history of the University of Alberta, how it began and the many important historical figures with Edmonton Ghost Tours.
The Big Art Drive-In – Calgary
Enjoy a drive-in movie at B!G ART Drive-In – an entertainment experience with all the traditional amenities you love and expect from a drive-in, with the technology of today. With special FX, large-format concert sound and lighting, and live-action actors, B!G ART Drive-In will deliver an interactive cinematic experience.
Explore Southern Alberta with Spark Science Road Trips
Hop in your car and unfold a specially curated map made by TELUS Spark! This experience is self-exploratory with elements of in-person facilitation and socially distanced activities in between stops. Uncover obscure and delightful science-y points of interest and jam to a playlist of thematic songs and podcasts for a perfect day exploring Alberta’s most curious locations.
Skyline Luge – Calgary
Climb aboard your Luge cart that features brakes and steering system and have a unique experience as gravity takes you down to the bottom of the hill over an 1800 metres purpose-built track at Canada Olympic Park, Calgary.
Twilight Picnic Experience – Spruce Grove
This picnic experience for two includes a gourmet picnic box and exclusive admission to the University of Alberta Botanic Garden in Spruce Grove in the beautiful evening hours. Stroll through the peaceful grounds as the frogs begin to sing, the sun sets over the bridge in the Kurimoto Japanese Garden and lights reflect on the fountains in the Aga Khan Garden. We are limiting access to 30 picnic parties per evening, so it will feel almost as if you have the Garden to yourself!
Alberta is sweeping prairies, rising mountain peaks, rocky terrain, and boreal forests. It’s breathtaking at any time of year, but autumn is when Alberta really comes alive with vibrant colours, crisp mountain air, and stunning sunsets across fields of wheat. Satisfy your wanderlust with any one of these classic hikes and multi-day treks.
Drive Cowboy Trail
The Cowboy Trail (Highway 22) is a famous driving route in Alberta that takes you from the town of Mayerthorpe (90 minutes from Edmonton), south to Lundbreck, or vice versa. The entire route is 584 kilometres one way. Visit a section of the highway each weekend in September and truly discover Alberta.
Banff Horseback Riding Adventure
Go back to a simpler time with a 2-hour horseback ride and experience the park at a relaxed pace. Led by your cowboy guide, saddle up and and get a feel for what it was like for pioneers first settling in this once-wild area. You’ll explore stunning sections of wilderness on this two-hour trip, providing a chance to spot wildlife that you might not get to see while on foot.
Kiwanis Apple Festival – Calgary
Join for Kiwanis Apple Festival – a celebration of our history, a celebration of children, and a celebration of special cuisine, entertainment, education and outdoor exploration of a very special place – Kamp Kiwanis.
Discover Murals of Lloydminster
Take in the sights of Lloydminster’s many creative murals. Ranging from the depiction of the Barr Colonists’ journey to the creative spirit that happens when colour, shape, and whimsy merge, there are plenty to keep you inspired.
Take a Guided Tour of Medalta – Medicine Hat
Medalta is not your typical museum. It is an innovative industrial museum, a contemporary ceramic arts facility, an art gallery, and a community hub in Medicine Hat. The artwork displayed is from both the past and present and much of it was even made right there at the museum. Enter Medalta’s iconic beehive kilns, explore our nationally-recognized archaeological excavations.
Rope for Hope Alberta
Make-A-Wish Rope for Hope is a unique challenge event that calls on participants to fundraise in support of local wish-granting efforts, in exchange for an exhilarating experience to rappel down an iconic building.
Participants can sign up for Calgary to rappel down the Sheraton Au Claire or in Lethbridge rappelling down Melcor Centre. All proceeds go directly to wish granting in Southern Alberta!
Fort Whoop-Up/Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden Catered Picnic – Lethbridge
Enjoy a catered picnic at Fort Whoop-Up or Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden grounds. The menu has been carefully designed by the Fort’s chef and is prepared by the staff at Mocha Cabana. Also included are tickets for entry to Fort Whoop-Up and the Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden. Details
Bergen Rocks International Sculpture Park – Sundre
Explore Bergen Rocks International Sculpture Park in Sundre. This sculpture park is a place where one man with a vision has brought together artists and art from around the world, including Vietnam, Germany, Thailand, India, China, Turkey, Korea, Mongolia, Iran, Ireland, Kenya, Cuba, Italy and Canada.
Grey Owl Meadery- Alder Flats
Nestled in the rolling foothills, this is the perfect spot to taste some wine. The wine here is made from honey extracted right on site from the hives that are located in the Alder Flats and Buck Lake area. Serving charcuterie boards, mead by the glass, and gourmet coffee, you can enjoy the vistas from the patio and learn more about the unique history of mead. Of course, there is also a gift shop onsite that carries products made from beeswax and honey.
Get Lost in a Corn Maze or a Sunflower Maze – Across Alberta
Put down the iPads & tablets and get down to the maze for a reality game time made of growing creative designs that changes every year.