Drumheller simply will be the coolest place to go to in Alberta. Most individuals make a beeline to the Canadian Rockies in Banff or Jasper, however the Canadian badlands are usually not to be missed. The city of Drumheller makes for an incredible base to discover a few of Alberta’s quirkiest and most superb sights. So let’s discover the dinosaur capital of the world and take a look at all of the cool issues to do in Drumheller.
The Remarkable Landscape of Drumheller
Drumheller is a small city 90 minutes east of Calgary. It can simply be executed on a day journey from Calgary, however to actually expertise the entire superb issues to see and do close to Drumheller, you want no less than 3 days. We have created this journey information to encourage you to spend a while in Drumheller and discover extra of Alberta outdoors the Canadian Rockies.
If you intend to go to Drumheller, you will have a automotive. We have this stretch of street as top-of-the-line drive in Canada. You can choose up automobiles straight on the Calgary Airport. Check charges for automotive leases in Alberta right here.
Things to do in Drumheller
An previous coal-mining city that’s residence to the richest dinosaur fossil assortment in the world, Drumheller affords loads of actions for out of doors fanatics, historical past buffs, and pictures lovers. The surrounding Drumheller space is simply as fascinating because the beautiful Canadian Rockies, so let’s get began and take a look at what to do in Drumheller and past!
The Dinosaur Trail in Drumheller, Alberta, affords a fascinating journey by the guts of Canada’s dinosaur nation, unveiling the distinctive landscapes and prehistoric heritage of the area. Winding by the dramatic badlands and rolling hills, this scenic route options an array of notable sights, together with the famend Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology, which homes one of many world’s largest shows of dinosaur fossils.
The Trail is split into the North Dinosaur Trail and the South Dinosaur Trail and we’ll break this journey information into completely different elements to give attention to every. But when visiting Drumheller it’s best to be sure that to see all of it.
South Dinosaur Trail
1. Hoodoos of Drumheller
The Hoodoos are the star attraction of Drumheller. They are a cluster of skinny rock spires with a dense rock cap sitting on high. The cap protects the spires from utterly eroding away. They are smaller than you’d count on as a bit cluster on the facet of a hill, however they’re superior. The hoodoos are situated simply off the facet of the street a brief stroll from the car parking zone, however they’re fascinating.
If you’re up for a bit mild mountaineering, you possibly can climb to the highest of the hill to overlook the hoodoos.
Made of sandstone, they fashioned over lots of of years of abrasion. These fairytale chimneys are very delicate and two to 4 toes each 100 years. Many individuals solely keep on the hoodoos for a couple of minutes taking in the tiny cluster of pillars sitting on the facet of the street. But take your time to see them from all angles and ensure to hike up to the excessive lookout. Read about our expertise right here.
2. Atlas Coal Mine National Historic Site
The Atlas Coal Mine National Historic Site is what this space was constructed round on the flip of the twentieth century. Operating from 1936 to 1970 the Atlas Coal Mine produced coal to energy steam engines for CN and CP rail heading to the prairies. It is taken into account Canada’s best-preserved full coal mine and guests can tour the mine and may climb the final picket tipple in Canada.
You can do a self-guided tour of the grounds, however to entry the underground and tipple you will want to take a guided tour. You will see And that’s the place all of the cool stuff is! The Tipple was used to transport coal to the practice automobiles and also you’ll be taking a visit by the underground tunnels.
Admission is Adults: $14.00 Youth/Senior: $11.00 (Self-guided) Where to Stay in Drumheller: If you’re searching for lodging in Drumheller, we suggest Heartwood Inn and Spa. There is a overview on the backside of this put up.
3. East Coulee School Museum
If you need to pop right into a museum to be taught a bit extra about life in the coal mining days. The East Coulee School Museum is a ghost city set in an previous schoolhouse that focuses on life at residence for the households of the miners from 1930 – 1971.
It serves as each a commemorative institution and an academic heart, aiming to protect and depict the historical past and heritage of the East Coulee space and its individuals, significantly specializing in the lifetime of coal miners and their households. If you cease in for a go to you will note the historic faculty constructing and expertise what it was like in the classroom and there’s a coal mining exhibit, artifacts, and images.
4. Last Chance Saloon
It will be the first cease in your drive south from Drumheller, however we advise stopping right here in your approach again, it’s an incredible place for lunch or dinner. The Last Chance Saloon is likely one of the coolest locations to eat in Alberta! To get there, you want to detour off Highway 10 to Highway 10x and drive west.
After crossing 11 bridges zigzagging over the Red Deer River, you arrive on the Last Chance Saloon. This was a wild west sort of saloon the place coal miners spent their paycheck on the weekends and plenty of a brawl broke out. They have made certain to depart bullet holes on the partitions to present the rowdy heritage. You’ll undoubtedly need to stroll by and peruse the images and memorabilia. It’s a dwelling museum!
The Last Chance Saloon, is situated in the ghost city of Wayne situated 14km southeast of Drumheller. This was the guts of the mining business the place as soon as 3000 individuals lived in the city, and 10,000 lived in the encompassing communities.
The 11 one-lane bridges are well worth the drive alone, they’re in the Guinness Book of World Records as essentially the most bridges situated in the shortest distance. (Guinness will measure something!) The solely construction left standing as we speak is the Rosedeer Hotel which is related to the Last Chance Saloon. Read about our full street journey at The Cowboy Trail – A Southern Alberta Road Trip
6. Star Mine Suspension Bridge
Note: The Rosedale Suspension bridge is completely closed however we thought we’d depart in a bit bit in regards to the historical past.
Constructed in 1931 the Star Mine Suspension Bridge, (aka Rossdale Suspension Bridge) is a bridge spanning the Red Deer River which you can stroll throughout. This 117-meter-long suspension bridge was created to give coal miners from the Rosedale neighborhood entry to the Atlas Coal Mine. Before that, they rowed throughout the river.
7. North Dinosaur Trail Drumheller
The North Trail takes you on a loop north of Drumheller alongside Hwy 837 and 838. There is lots to see on this 48 km loop. Heading out of Drumheller the path will lead you alongside the north facet of the Red Deer River. This route affords stunning views of the badlands, the Little Church, and the Bleriot Ferry crossing.
Make certain to take your time to go for hikes and benefit from the viewpoints. The entire allure of this a part of Alberta is experiencing the awe-inspiring surroundings.
Another nice Alberta Road journey is the Icefields Parkway. Check it out right here.
8. World’s Largest Dinosaur
Canadians love roadside sights, and it’s becoming that the dinosaur capital of the world shows the world’s largest Dinosaur. The construction is a mannequin Tyrannosaurus rex that stands roughly 86 toes (26 meters) tall and 151 toes (46 meters) lengthy, making it almost 4 instances bigger than an actual T. rex would have been.
Across the Street is Rotary Spray Park which is a well-liked vacation spot for households, particularly through the hotter months. The park affords a wide range of actions and services to maintain guests of all ages entertained. The park options a big spray pad with varied water options, fountains, and spray nozzles that kids can run by and play in. It’s a good way to cool off on a sizzling day.
10. Hoodoo Trail
The hoodoos of Drumheller are the whole purpose we needed to go to Drumheller in Alberta. So beginning on the Hoodoo Trail is our primary factor to do. From Drumheller, begin driving south alongside Highway 56 to freeway 10 following the Red Deer River. Most of the route is situated in Midland Provincial Park which affords loads of pull-offs and picnic stops. The Hoodoo Trail is an out-and-back route totaling solely 50km. (23.5 km every approach) Read extra: The Hoodoos of Drumheller
We recommend going straight to the Hoodoos in the morning earlier than they get too busy after which take your time exploring the remainder of the path. Read extra of our southern Alberta Road Trip right here.
11. Royal Tyrrell Museum
We aren’t ones to gush over museums, however the Royal Tyrrell Museum is superb! 75 million years in the past, dinosaurs roamed this land and so they left their mark throughout Drumheller. The Royal Tyrell Museum is one of the best dinosaur museum in the world displaying the finds which have been found all through Drumheller and the Badlands. Unlike most museums all over the world the place dinosaur skeletons are faux, the Royal Tyrell sows actual dinosaur bones.
Plus, The Royal Tyrell Museum has the best-preserved genuine T-Rex skulls in the world and there are precise Paleontologists engaged on bones. You can method them to discuss to them, and there are others working behind glass exhibiting you what’s concerned in excavations.
12. Badlands Interpretive Trail
While you’re on the Royal Tyrrell Museum, take a stroll alongside the Badlands Interpretive Trail situated in Midland Provincial Park.
Once you arrive on the park, you possibly can observe the indicators to find the start line of the Badlands Interpretive Trail. The path affords a chance to be taught in regards to the geology, paleontology, and ecology of the Canadian Badlands.
13. Horsethief Canyon
The first viewpoint you will note alongside this drive is Horsethief Canyon. It is the basic Alberta Badlands web site and what a sight to behold! Horsethief Canyon bought its identify from cowboy outlaws hiding stolen horses in the 1800s. When trying on the canyon under, you possibly can see the way it made for an incredible hiding place!
You can truly see the layers of time etched in the canyon partitions. There are platforms to take in the scenic views and you’ll go mountaineering. I extremely suggest mountaineering by the badlands. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime alternative. Just make sure to convey loads of water, it will get sizzling!
14. Little Church
As we stated above, Canadians love a street facet attraction and the Little Church of Drumheller is certainly that! Built in 1968 as a spot for meditation and worship. It can also be a vacationer attraction in Drumheller attracting 10,000 individuals six at a time. It seats six individuals and nonetheless operates as a marriage chapel and holding companies. How cool wouldn’t it be to get married right here?
15. Bleriot Ferry
Cross the Red Deer River by utilizing the Bleriot Ferry. It’s free and it’s at all times cool to take a ferry. Operating each day from 8 am to 11 pm from May by September, this little ferry crossing has been in operation since 1913. It’s the oldest cable ferry in North America! And the ferry is free!
16. Orkney Viewpoint
Once you cross the river, you are actually on the best way again alongside the Dinosaur Trail and the Orkney Viewpoint affords stunning views of the Red Deer River Valley. Located on excessive crimson rock cliffs, it’s the quintessential Alberta view.
17. Horseshoe Canyon
When driving from Calgary this would be the first cease you see in your approach to Drumheller. Or if you’re us, the final cease you see in your approach out. But it may completely be executed on the Dinosaur Trail. Horseshoe Canyon has a 3.9 kilometer loop path for higher views of its coulees and hoodoos and the abundance of wildflowers that develop in the canyons. Keep in thoughts, it may get extremely popular in the Alberta Badlands, so at all times carry water.
18. Dinosaur Provincial Park
After spending a few days in Drumheller exploring the Dinosaur Trail and the Hoodoo Trail, make your approach to Dinosaur Provincial Park to actually dig into the dinosaur tradition.
19. Centrosaurus Quarry Hike
Located in the guts of the Alberta Badlands, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is residence to the richest assortment of dinosaur fossils on earth. You can take a tour out to The Centrosaurus Quarry to see precise dinosaur fossils. Once what you’re searching for (which you find out about on this guided hike) they’re all over the place. Much of the park is off-limits as it’s nonetheless a working excavation web site, however there are just a few tour alternatives.
We actually loved our hike, however we additionally took a sundown tour by bus taking us out to all of the superb lookouts in search of its wealthy deposits of dinosaur bones. Dinosaur Provincial Park deserves a few days to discover. Read all about it right here.
When to Visit Drumheller
When visiting the Drumheller space there are some things to consider. We have damaged down one of the best time to go to.
Late Spring (May to June): The climate begins to heat up, and the panorama comes alive with blooming wildflowers. Outdoor sights and trails are open for exploration. There is likely to be fewer crowds in contrast to the height summer time months. Summer (July to August): This is the height vacationer season in Drumheller, with heat temperatures and lengthy days. Most occasions, festivals, and out of doors actions are scheduled throughout these months. Popular sights just like the Royal Tyrrell Museum and the World’s Largest Dinosaur may be busy, so plan accordingly. Early Fall (September): The climate stays nice, however the crowds begin to diminish. The panorama options stunning fall colours, and out of doors actions are nonetheless pleasing.
Things to Consider:
Weather: The climate in Drumheller may be fairly variable, so it’s clever to examine the forecast and are available ready with layers, solar safety, and applicable footwear. Crowds: If you favor a quieter expertise, contemplate visiting through the shoulder seasons (late spring or early fall) to keep away from peak crowds. Attractions Availability: While summer time affords essentially the most accessibility to sights, some websites and actions stay open in the low season, providing a unique expertise. Events: Check the native occasion calendar for festivals, exhibitions, or different happenings throughout your go to.
Regardless of while you go to, Drumheller affords a singular and enriching expertise with its fascinating dinosaur heritage, putting badlands panorama, and a wide range of indoor and out of doors actions.
Drumheller Itinerary in Two Days
To allow you to plan a visit to Drumheller, we put collectively a simple downtown Drumheller Itinerary in two days. Enjoy!
Day 1: Exploring Prehistoric Wonders
Morning: Royal Tyrrell Museum
Time: 9:00 AM – 12:30 PM Activity: Begin your Drumheller journey on the Royal Tyrrell Museum. Explore the fascinating displays showcasing Canada’s prehistoric previous, that includes one of many world’s largest shows of dinosaurs. Tips: Arrive early to keep away from crowds. Don’t neglect to try the museum’s rotating particular displays!
Lunch: Bernie and the Boys Bistro
Time: 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM Activity: Enjoy a hearty meal at this native favourite, recognized for its mammoth-sized burgers and milkshakes. Location: 305 4 St W, Drumheller, AB T0J 0X0, Canada
Afternoon: Drumheller’s Giant Dinosaur & Fossil World
Time: 2:30 PM – 4:30 PM Activity: Climb contained in the World’s Largest Dinosaur and benefit from the panoramic views of Drumheller. Afterward, head to Fossil World Dinosaur Discovery Center for interactive displays and fossil digging actions. Tips: The climb contained in the Giant Dinosaur entails stairs, so put on comfy footwear!
Dinner: Sublime Food and Wine
Time: 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM Activity: Indulge in a superb eating expertise at Sublime Food and Wine, having fun with locally-sourced dishes in a comfy ambiance. Location: 109 Centre St, Drumheller, AB T0J 0Y0, Canada
Evening: Drumheller Valley Lookout
Time: 8:30 PM – 9:30 PM Activity: End your day by watching the sundown over the beautiful landscapes of the Drumheller Valley from one of many scenic lookouts. Tips: Bring a lightweight jacket, as it may get chilly in the night.
Day 2: Adventure & Scenic Beauty
Morning: Horsethief Canyon & Bleriot Ferry
Time: 9:00 AM – 11:30 AM Activity: Start with the picturesque Horsethief Canyon, adopted by a trip on the historic Bleriot Ferry throughout the Red Deer River. Tips: Wear sturdy footwear for mountaineering and produce your digicam for some stunning panorama images!
Lunch: WHIFS Flapjack House
Time: 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Activity: Savor some scrumptious pancakes and different hearty breakfast fare at this native gem. Location: 680 2 St E, Drumheller, AB T0J 0Y0, Canada
Afternoon: Horseshoe Canyon & ATV Adventure
Time: 1:30 PM – 5:00 PM Activity: Explore the breathtaking landscapes of Horseshoe Canyon. Consider reserving an ATV tour for an exhilarating trip by the canyons. Tips: Dress appropriately for out of doors actions and produce water to keep hydrated.
Dinner: Yavis Family Restaurant
Time: 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM Activity: Conclude your adventure-filled day with a soothing meal at Yavis Family Restaurant, a neighborhood institution providing a various menu. Location: 1102 AB-9, Drumheller, AB T0J 0Y3, Canada
Evening: Ghost Walk Tour
Time: 8:30 PM – 10:00 PM Activity: If accessible, be a part of a neighborhood ghost stroll tour to discover the eerie and mysterious facet of Drumheller, studying about native legends and folklore. Tips: Wear comfy strolling footwear and produce a flashlight.
This two-day itinerary affords a mixture of journey, historical past, and pure magnificence, showcasing the distinctive allure of Drumheller, Alberta. Make certain to examine the supply of actions and opening hours of venues in advance, as they’ll fluctuate relying on the time of yr. Safe travels!
Where to Stay in Drumheller
Heartwood Inn and Spa is a well-liked selection in Drumheller. We stayed right here and cherished it! Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson stayed right here through the filming of Shanghai Noon. If it’s ok for them it’s ok for Dave and Deb! It’s an incredible inn with elegant rooms and pleasant house owners. It’s the kind of place that takes an curiosity in what you see and do and provides wonderful recommendation.
We particularly loved their well-known French Toast in the morning. It’s the one factor they serve for breakfast. As the proprietor stated to us “I do one thing and one thing very well.” Yum!
Other Places to Stay in Drumheller
Cactus Coulee Fun Park & RV Resort is a superb place to keep in Drumheller with children. Even if you’re not staying at Cactus Coulee Fun Park & RV Resort, you possibly can go to for the day and benefit from the sights like go-karting, mini golf and EuroBungy
Horseshoe Canyon Campground is one other excellent spot to stick with tenting, cabins, and RV hook-up.
Dinosaur Provincial Park has tenting as nicely. Read: Dinosaur Provincial Park – Glamping Tour in the Alberta Badlands
And these are the highest sights close to Drumheller. Have you been to the Alberta Badlands? Where is your favourite place to go to in Alberta?