The Former Largest Mall in the World – West Edmonton Mall
Fort Edmonton Park – A Park that made me felt back in time of Canada.
Throwback post for the Week
Throwback post of the Week
Part 3 of Edmonton City Posts
Featuring Our World (Post#2) : Cloverdale
While I am looking what to post for photo theme, I randomly checked my picasa web photos online and found one album of photos that I haven’t written a travel post story because I just visited the place of a friend that I met while staying in Edmonton, near her house in Strathearn where it offers a great view of Edmonton Downtown and its surrounding areas. It’s pretty amazing that I still have those photos after almost 8 years that had been passed. The following photos includes the Gallagher Park where Muttart Conservatory are located. North Saskatchewan River is visible and even the Commonwealth Stadium. Photos captured last May 2008.
Discovery (Post#4): Snow Shoe (From Royal Alberta Museum)
As I am looking for photo to post that belongs to my project – photo themes, while reading again my old post for the month of February which entitled Royal Alberta Museum – Edmonton (Part 8) I saw again the snapshot that I captured inside the museum. When I saw the old version of snow shoe I was amazed how people really creative and intelligent just to address what it needs to survive. This image was shot last June 2008 and this is part of my Edmonton photo collection.
View At My Window (Post#6) : North Saskatchewan River
During my stay in Edmonton, one of the things that I tried in the city as experience and another way to look around Edmonton was riding the High Level Bridge Streetcar. The said bridge is located near Alberta Provincial Legislature Building. The photo captured when I got a chance to visit the capital city of Alberta which is Edmonton last June 2008. The bridge is now one of the tourist spot in the city because of its significant history.
As per Wikipedia, High Level Bridge links separate communities of Edmonton and Strathcona which combined to become Edmonton City today. The bridge was designed to accommodate rail, streetcar, automobile and pedestrian.
Other post related to North Saskatchewan River which published few years back
North Saskatchewan River – Edmonton (Part 5)
Name Of The Place (Post#6) : Fort Edmonton Park
As I am looking for next photos to be posted in this series of categories under “Name Of The Place”, I found this photo which just right here.
Fort Edmonton Park is located in Edmonton City, Capital City of Alberta Province in Canada, I captured this photo when I visited the park last May 2008. The park is heritage park which opens late spring season to show case the old days of Edmonton from its beginning up to the times it became a city.
I wrote a post years ago about my visit in the park in other blog site and I transferred it here.
After enjoying the tour inside the museum I bought some souvenirs as my remembrance from this museum.
I hope you enjoy this little story of mine about my tour in Aviation Museum in Edmonton Alberta, Canada which happened last June 7, 2008.
For this article I will be focusing what I did and what I found in Royal Alberta Museum. Just additional information before I continue telling my story, after I visited two royal museums such as Alberta and British Columbia (in Vancouver), I quite understand that it seems that there might be another province in Canada that have their own royal museums. After checking in internet, I just found out that there is one in Saskatchewan and Ontario province. After I learned that, I felt good that at least I was able to visit two royal museums in Canada.
As far as I remember, it was more than an hour left when we went to Royal Alberta museum and it will be closed (the reason was, we visited other places and I never realized that museum’s will be closing that so soon). Because of tight schedule, we were so aware about the time but honestly, while looking to each exhibit in that museum, how I wish I have more time.
There are two levels in Royal Alberta museum. First level has portion where you can see lots of wild animals that had been preserved in some ways, they call it “Wild Alberta”. And for me, seeing those animals in up close and personal (although they are not moving anymore) was one of my amazing experience in that museum. There are lots of animals I saw in that gallery. I wish I can take pictures of all of them but that is impossible with short period of time that we had. The second level, composed of the gallery of Aboriginal Culture where you can see the earlier history of Canada. While in another room, you can view the Natural History Gallery for their beautiful stones and historic fossils.
Without further ado, lets begin my short journey in one of the beautiful museum I visited in Canada.
There are different kinds of zones in Wild Alberta.The following zones are: Borreal Forest Zone, Prairie Zone, Parkland Zone, Mountain Zone and Water Zone.
In Borreal Zone, I was quite exciting because I saw beaver that I felt like they were so real. I saw beaver while traveling in Banff but I am very far from it. Unlike in the exhibit I saw them closely and found how cute they are c”,). I also found some caribou, wolf, moose, pelican and grouse. And even I have less time to see it, I still take my time to take pictures of some animals there.
In Prairie Zone, I had fun enjoying the view of eagles. The museum exhibits different kinds of eagles. And eagles are the raptors that I really admire. The other animals I saw were: coyote, mule deer and prong horn. I also post with huge bison, the animal that I can’t believe with an amazing size.
In Parkland Zone, I found birds and swans. This is the zone where the animals you can see in Borreal and Prairie were mixed. In this place, I enjoy the different sounds of birds tweeting in my ears. And most of the sounds soothes my ears. It’s really different in a place like nature, the only difference of the museum to the nature, animals through dioramas are enclosed in glasses and not in motion.
In Mountain Zone, I found the mountain lion which similarly look like a tiger. Honestly without notes at the front of diorama there, I will really think they are tiger. Other animals that I saw were bighorn sheep, grizzly bear and mountain goat.
And in Water Zone, I saw different fishes that was enjoyable to watch but since I have limited time, I was not able to capture some photos from this area.
Syncrude Gallery of Aboriginal Culture
When I visited this part of the museum, I totally understand who were the first people lived in Canada. They call them “First People” or “First Nation”. While in this gallery it reminds me that this huge country of Canada has similarities in my own country Philippines when it comes to the first people. The way they live their life, like hunting is amazing. And the way they survive in the winter season. I saw a lot of unique stuff of Canada history.
I saw the old snow shoe and that was awesome. Then I saw the clothes that the “First Nation are wearing during winter. I was able to see the ancient tools they used for living like rocks. The life that first people did to survive during ancient times such as Bison hunting. Even the kind of shelter that they live in. I remember when I visited Fort Edmonton Park, and thinking the Fur Trading Era. It connects everything. Seeing a very old and unique stuff were wonderful. The gallery showcased the artifacts of history from Ice Age up to the modern times of Canada specially in Alberta. It’s really worth to know the Alberta history and of Canada as a whole.
Natural History Gallery
Since we just have few minutes left before the museum close, we tried to visit this gallery as much as we can. But even I tried to view all those stuff displayed, I still amazed and I can’t stop admiring the things I saw in this gallery. I took a lot of time, viewing the wonderful stones displayed. Every stones displayed there, struck me and I can’t believe I am seeing it.
I don’t have good photos of these magnificent rocks
Then, I saw the fossils display in the gallery where you can find the dinosaur bones located at the side of the room.
to see inside the gallery
For me everything I saw in the museums are made of artwork and passion for history. I hope you enjoy the little story I had when I visited Royal Alberta Museum last June 2008.
One of inside view of the mall (This photo was cropped,
there is a big fish sculpture and I was inside it)
Ice Palace is a place to watch hockey game. When I visited this part of the mall, there are young kids (both guys and gals) were playing.
World Waterpark is the indoor beach-like resort where you can swim and just enjoy water. I actually like the slides built beside the resort. This resort has man-made waves wherein you will feel like you are totally in a beach. Edmonton has no beach because it is surrounded by land areas and this is the right place if you want to enjoy the beach like atmosphere. The people who enjoy the place are also the same people who enjoy the beach outside. They just either stay beside the water and enjoy the sun rays passing the glass ceilings of water park.
I also found a bungee jump beside the world water park. I had fun watching the kids enjoying the jump. Next, we found the Deep Sea Adventure wherein I saw Santa Maria – a sea fleet with exact replica of Christoper Columbus Santa Maria. For me its a real classic boat. I also found some people who dine at the docking area of the fleet. Well, it is indeed quite cute for me as a place for a dating with someone.
My buddy and I continued strolling around the place until we found an awesome golf course place, Professors Wem’s Adventure Golf. This golf course is a mini golf course with lot of small areas to allow different players to play golf.
Chinatown is a place for Chinese restaurants and stores. While Bourbon Street is a place mostly for western restaurants and diners.
There were lots of things I saw in this mall and I did enjoy strolling around the place. But for someone who really wanted to explore the place, one day is not enough. Before I forgot, I also found the Fantasyland Hotel wherein I saw an architectural design which similar to Europe.
That is all I have to say about West Edmonton Mall.
First thing that greets me after I bought my entrance ticket to the park was the old train and they call it steam train. Honestly, I only saw this kind of train from the classic movies that I watched and I was kind of thrilled after I saw it. And I told to myself, “I think I am going to enjoy this tour.”
Kenneth McDonald House
Peter Erasmus House
After 1885 street, I continue strolling up to 1905 street, I found a barn and farm house. Then, some of the stores which already closed because its past 6PM. It made me sad but I can not do anything about. There was no train anymore and because of that I have to walk from 1905 to the exit gate. I passed again the 1920 lane. And what I did was capture scenery as many as I can.
The trip was great and I titled it as “Back To The Past Tour”.
I booked an Edmonton Queen Riverboat cruise. My main reason for doing it was to experience North Saskatchewan river. From the time I arrived in Edmonton, I was fascinated already by this river.
I took a cab from Legislature Building to Edmonton Queen Riverboat center at 98Th avenue. I gave my reservation booking to one of the crew and they gave me my entrance and dinner ticket. But on my way to the rafters landing area where I am going to ride the boat, I lost my ticket somewhere. So, I have to go back and look for my ticket or else, I will not be admitted to the entrance and I will not have my dinner (this situation made me felt bad). I went back to the center where I get my ticket. On my way, to the center, other tourist that coming approached me and asked if I lost my ticket, and I told them that I was. After saying that, they showed my ticket and gave it to me. Then, I felt lucky and thanked them. Next, I went back to the boat and showed my ticket. I was relieved when I got myself inside the boat.I walked to the front deck of the boat and approached one of the table then grab a chair for me. Then, I saw a couple sitting to the table next to mine. Then, I stood up and approached the couple and asked them if they mind if I can join them in their table. I told them I was alone and I added that it was better to give my table to the other group of people. They agreed and I joined them in their table.
and Canada Place (pink building)
from Queen Riverboat at North Saskatchewan River
TELUS (former highest building in Edmonton)
from Queen Riverboat at North Saskatchewan River
The couple started a conversation with me. They introduce their selves and I did the same thing. Right now, I cannot remember their name. I was informed that the reason why they were cruising and having dinner in Edmonton Queen Riverboat was to celebrate their 10Th anniversary. For me that was really wonderful. And the idea of dating or cruising in a river is kind of sweet thing. Then I told them where I came from, why I was in Edmonton and until when I am staying in the city. I had a great time with them. They were very friendly. And when the boat crew announced that we can go inside the boat for our dinner, we went down and shared the dinner table. I never felt alone in my cruise in Edmonton Queen Riverboat since I was accompanied by the couple I met.
After dinner, that was the only time the cruise started. I requested a permission to the couple to leave the table to enjoy the scenery outside. I told them that I have to take my chances to take pictures of the river. While cruising the river, I were able to view the downtown skyline. Even though I used to see downtown, what I saw from the river still amazed me. I loved what I saw. And I loved to feel the air in the river which was quite cold.
Another angle for Downtown skyline
from Queen Riverboat at North Saskatchewan River
The sail started from the Rafter’s landing area then cruised before the high level bridge. Then, the boat turned around and sailed up to area before Dawson Bridge. The cruise was enjoyable and I had a great night.
Before leaving the boat, I approached the couple and thanked them again for letting me joined them to celebrate their anniversary. Next, the couple asked me how I will be able to get home and I told them that I am going to take a cab since I am not sure which bus will take me to downtown and if there were still bus around that time. To my surprise, the couple offered me that they will drive me home. And I cannot reject their offer that was why I accepted it. Before they dropped me home, they drove me around downtown and nearby places so that I can see more about Edmonton. We even stopped at Starbucks and they bought me an iced coffee that was really thoughtful of both of them. I really enjoyed their company, they were so kind to me to think they just met me.
I really enjoyed my Sunday.
What interests me in riding a High Level street car? First, it will be a first time experience and second my curiosity started on the things that I may be able to see while riding a High Level street car.
When I arrived at the station I did not see a street car and because of that, I thought that the street car left already. But I checked my watched and the time was still early. I tried to find a small building that will serve as ticketing station, but the station that I saw are open place with few waiting chairs and the High Level street car trail. I wondered that time, “Where I will buy my ticket?”. That question in my mind had been answered when the High Level street car arrived. Some of the tourist went out the street car Then, the tourist guide went out too. The tourist guide was also the one who will collect our payment for the ride. Well that explains why there was no ticketing station because there is no need for it.
Next thing I was aware was I was inside the high level street car and the tour started. First, we passed the Legislature building. Then, we passed North Saskatchewan river, three tunnels, the Fort Hill, C&E Station Museum until we ended at Strathcona Terminal. What I like best on this rides, was the time when we were at the top of the bridge and below is the North Saskatchewan River. The view was wonderful. I see Edmonton in different angle. And the bottom of street car trail was a bridge passing by a real cars and other vehicles. The feeling was different and a little bit exciting while on top of the bridge.
North Saskatchewan River
The street car will be on its way to Jasper Terminal. And because of that I decided to get out myself of the street car at the station near in Legislature Building for my next tour.
That ended my experience in High Level street car with a quick tour.
At first, when I arrived at the vicinity of the Legislature Building, I thought I can just get inside and have my own tour since it was free. When I approached one of the guard in the building, he told me that I have to go to the Interpretive Centre and Gift Shop. So I followed his instructions. I found out that the tour guide are waiting for us in that place. I was grouped with other tourist.
Next thing happened, the tourist guide started to give us a building tour outline to give us idea what we are expecting in the tour. From Interpretive Centre we went to the Legislature Building. Then, our guide started talking about all information of the building and some historical information of Canada related to the building. When I saw the first floor of the building I see an awesome fountain in the middle and the Grand Staircase.
The guide showed us important statues such as Princess Louise Caroline Alberta – fourth daughter of Queen Victoria and Chief Crowfoot. When I heard the name of Princess Louise, I asked the guide if it is the same person of Princess named after famous Lake Louise and the guide agreed. Well, I learned that information from the tourist guide in Banff. I remember that Princess Louise was small lady. And I can see that in her statue in the Legislature Building.
Princess Louise Caroline Alberta
Next thing that the tourist guide showed us are the portraits of the person who became Alberta’s Premiers (head of the government). As of this writing I cannot remember anymore the names of the Premiers that was mentioned by the guide. Next, portraits that was showed to us are pictures of Alberta’s Lieutenant Governors (representative of the Queen). Then, the guide led us to the Mace Case. We saw two mace. One is the original mace and based from the guide it was made from scrap materials which was amazing. And I learned that the mace is a symbol of Legislative Assembly authority to make laws. The other mace was the current mace being used.
Then, the guide led us the Legislative Chamber, but before that, we saw the picture of King George V and Queen Mary. One thing that the tourist guide emphasize in these two portraits of the King and Queen. The guide mentioned to us to look into their eyes and try to walk in either direction and we will see what is it. I followed the instruction of the guide and I found out that it seems that their eyes are following us like they are looking to us. I just realized how great that painting was.
King George V
After the portraits, we went inside the Legislative Chamber. I was amazed on what I saw. The lightnings of the chamber was fantastic. The main door of the chamber seems to be fully crafted and the same thing with the Speaker’s chair. Inside the chamber, I saw the portrait of Queen Victoria.
Last but not the least, I spent few minutes outside the building premises by taking lots of picture of the pool, fountain and the Legislature building itself.
Legislature Building with the pool
Zooming the front structure of Legislature Building
Left side of Legislature Building
In the end, I had a great time inside and outside the Legislature Building.
When I heard the word downtown, the impression to me was that this is a place where most of the people go. This means that this is a busy place. I went outside the hotel to walk around the downtown at past 9PM. That night I saw City Centre Mall, Bell Tower and other shopping store. But to my surprise, most of the establishments were closed and I did not expect it. I was surprised because downtown looks dull to me that night and I saw few people around. I cannot stop myself to compare this place to cities we have in Philippines. Weekend made the cities busy too. There are lots of people outside, malls are open until 11 PM. When I was in downtown, I was a little bit shocked. Since mall were closed that time, I had difficulty to find a restaurant that I can have my dinner. I stopped at the front of Bell Tower and decided to take a cab and asked the driver to drive me to the nearest open restaurant. The cab driver brought me to a Chinese restaurant. I was glad because I can eat rice. The driver waited for me and he drove me back to the hotel. First night, was not that pretty much excited but I have a lot of time to enjoy Edmonton.For almost two months of staying in Edmonton, one thing that I can say about downtown is, it is a busy place during weekdays but dull or I can say ghost town during weekend. Weekdays because most of the offices are located here and lots of people are working here.When I met my colleague at work, I had a chance to dine in different restaurants in downtown. The following restaurants are Co co di,Haweli, Sherlock’s Homes and Kids In The Hall Bistro. I had a chance to eat at Courthouse Cafeteria too. There was another place where my colleague used to eat. I can’t remember the name now. It is located in the food court. All I can remember is the name of the owner. They call her Amy. I just like to mention it here because, there is something especial in this eatery. Since it was located in a food court, there are other diner near in Amy’s eatery but to my surprise, most people or I can say all people are falling in line with Amy’s eatery while none will be seen in other diner. Sometimes I pity the other eatery because competition to dining business does not really exist. It is like monopolizing the dining business in that place.Few days passed, some of my colleagues walked me around the Citadel, Canada Place, Sir Winston Churchill Square and City Hall. One thing that I noticed in places in downtown. There are connected ped ways to each building structure. And I learned that its purpose is not to go outside especially during winter season.
Magnificent Fountain at the front of City Hall
I was lucky when we visit City Hall, the reason was I met one of the councilor of Edmonton City. But unfortunately I did not bring my camera to have a picture with him.
I admired the city hall because it has a great and distinct structure of the building. It has a pyramid glass ceiling and impressive fountain at the front of the building. I remembered that one time, when I planned to stroll again at the downtown, I witnessed a high school graduation event in city hall.
Most of the prestigious hotel in Edmonton can also be found in downtown like Fairmont Hotel MacDonald, The Westin Edmonton, The Sutton Place Hotel, Crown Plaza Chateau Lacombe (where I stayed during my first five nights in this city), Courtyard by Marriott and a lot more.
The condo unit where I stayed is along 104Th street. One Saturday morning, I was surprised when I went outside, there is a market along 104Th street. And people are coming by. Then, I realized after I checked some of the features of Edmonton downtown guide, that 104Th street is what they call city market. I did look around and found a lot of stuff being offered, plants for gardening, foods and souvenir stuff
Bell Tower at Downtown Edmonton
Grant MacEwan College
102 Avenue from The Bay Mall
During my last day tour in Edmonton which happened last June 7, 2008 – Saturday, with my buddy at work. I had a chance to see what is inside the Shaw Conference Centre. During the time we went there, there is ongoing convention and to my surprise Shaw Conference Centre is vast and huge place. And like to add also that I cannot forget that my buddy and I tried to ride the slant elevator just for the experience. Well the ride was cool.
When I was strolling around downtown, I met few Filipinos at the front of City Hall. Unlike me, they are in Edmonton for contract working. They were also new in the city that was why they were also touring the place. Because of them, I had a chance to have some pictures of places in downtown with myself. I was really thankful because I met them.
TELUS Plaza, what can I say in this place? Of course, TELUS Tower is great and I like the open plaza, where you can just sit there and enjoy the beauty of the place. But there is one place that I really like, I don’t know what they call on that part of the plaza, most people do smoke in this place but I like the view, because I can see North Saskatchewan river and the panoramic view of south part of Edmonton. It was a really nice view.
I also had a chance to see the Little Italy. A place where buildings and houses looks like of course in Italy during my unplanned tour in Edmonton together with some friends I met at the church.
Another experience I had in downtown is watching ball games. How can I forget my first ever ball game that I watched in my entire life. I am not really a sports person but when I found out that David Beckham will be visiting Edmonton and will play football game, I bought a ticket and watched his game. I went to Commonwealth Stadium after the office and I had this experience where the LRT station are full of commuters, this was the first time that I saw a lot of people inside the LRT station, because my previous experience most of the time especially during weekend, not so much people riding the train. These people will watched Beckham games. Based on what I heard while inside the stadium, the people dropped by to watched the game was reaching 35000 and for me that was significant number. During the entire game, people are yelling of Beckham games, especially women. They loved David Beckham.
I can say that I have a lot of things that enjoyed in downtown, lots of places that I had been, and a lot of people who I met. And I think this ends my story at Edmonton Downtown.