Home Destinations The Top 10 Things to Do in Lethbridge this Summer

The Top 10 Things to Do in Lethbridge this Summer

by Karen Ung
The experiences you can have in Lethbridge are as unique and varied as the geography. Take a horse-drawn wagon tour past coulees and cottonwoods, enjoy green tea in a Japanese garden, or hold a tiny owl in the palm of your hand. For more trip inspiration, check out our top 10 things to do in Lethbridge this summer.

summer fun in lethbridge

Top 10 Things to Do in Lethbridge this Summer

  1. Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden is a peaceful oasis in the heart of Lethbridge. More than a garden, Nikka Yuko celebrates Japanese culture and hosts several fun events all summer. Take a guided tour (free with admission), try on a summer kimono (extra charge but excellent photo opportunity), watch Japanese dancing or drumming, or enjoy green tea and Okinawan donuts in the garden. See the events calendar for more events at Nikka Yuko! To see why we visit the garden every year, please read our story: Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden, Lethbridge.
    Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden, Lethbridge
    Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden, Lethbridge
  2. Henderson Lake Park is the perfect place to learn to paddle or fish. Only non motorized boats can use the 24-hectare manmade lake. If you don’t have a boat or SUP, you can walk the 2.5 km trail around the lake, picnic, play at the playground, or visit the Demonstration and Rose Gardens and Canada 150 Maple Grove (free).
    Henderson Lake, Lethbridge
    2019 Dragon Boat Festival at Henderson Lake, Lethbridge
  3. Henderson Pool is a family favorite. This awesome outdoor pool has two waterslides, a spray park, diving board, drop slide, climbing wall, and grassy seating area. Your kids won’t wanna leave! For more information, please read Calgary Playground Review | Henderson Outdoor Pool – Lethbridge.
    Henderson Pool, Lethbridge
    Henderson Pool, Lethbridge
    Image credit: Calgary Playground Review
  4. Fort Whoop-Up takes you back in time to the buffalo robe and illegal whiskey trading days.  Begin your visit with a short film for context, then explore the replica fort. Buttons on the walls of most rooms play audio recordings about what life was like in Lethbridge from the mid-1860s to the early 1890s. Highlights of our visit included writing with a quill, making rope, and taking a horse drawn wagon tour of Indian Battle Park. Don’t miss Whoop-Up Days from August 20-24, 2019.
    Fort Whoop-Up Wagon Tour, Lethbridge
    Fort Whoop-Up Wagon Tour, Lethbridge
  5. Indian Battle Park: Photograph the High Level Bridge, hike the trails, play at the playground, have a picnic at Baroness Picnic Shelter, or check out nearby Helen Schuler Nature Centre and Fort Whoop-Up.
    Indian Battle Park, Lethbridge
    Rattlesnake playground structure at Indian Battle Park, Lethbridge
  6. Helen Schuler Nature Centre is a beautiful facility in the Old Man River Valley with cool exhibits and high quality programming guaranteed to get all ages interested in nature. Sign up for Kids Programs here. While you’re there, go on a nature walk. Coulee Climb Trail is our favorite – it offers a great view of the High Level Bridge. 
    High Level Bridge, Lethbridge
    View of High Level Bridge from Coulee Climb Trail in November
  7. Alberta Birds of Prey Nature Centre, Canada’s largest birds of prey facility, plays an important role in rehabilitating injured raptors (owls, hawks, eagles) and returning them to the wild. 90% of the rescued birds are released, but those that cannot fend for themselves are kept for education purposes. There are about 70 permanent resident birds. The centre also breeds endangered burrowing owls. Our favorite things to do there were: feed the ducks, get up close and personal with the owls, walk the nature trails, and watch a flight demonstration. Passionate staff answered all our questions about the amazing birds at the centre. We learned a lot and had so much fun! 15 minutes from Lethbridge in Coaldale.
    Alberta Birds of Prey Nature Centre, Coaldale
    Emi and Basil, a 6 year old burrowing owl at
    Alberta Birds of Prey Nature Centre, Coaldale
  8. Galt Museum is a great place to learn more about Alberta’s history, especially after visiting Fort Whoop-Up. Save time to explore the gardens outside!
    Galt Museum, Lethbridge
    An interactive exhibit at the Galt Museum, Lethbridge
    Image credit: Matt Bailey
  9. Saturday Farmer’s Market at Exhibition Park is every Saturday from May 11 – Oct 26, 9 am to 2 pm. With over 60 vendors, the market is your one stop shop for “crafts, fresh fruit and vegetables, home made baking, art work, handmade clothing, and much more.” Free admission and free parking!
    Saturday Farmer's Market, Lethbridge
    Saturday Farmer’s Market, Lethbridge
    Image credit: Exhibition Park Lethbridge
  10. Lethbridge Corn Maze has four fun corn mazes, a petting zoo, cow train (each car looks like a milk cow), giant slide, play centre, and more. Open July 26 until October 29, 2019.
    Lethbridge Corn Maze
    Lethbridge Corn Maze’s 2016 Design: The Toonie
    Image credit: Lethbridge Corn Maze

Bonus: The Cor Van Raay YMCA just opened earlier this year and boasts an aquatics centre, fitness centre, field house and gymnasiums. 256,000 square feet of fun!

Lethbridge Cor Van Raay YMCA Aquatic Centre
Lethbridge Cor Van Raay YMCA Aquatic Centre
Image credit: Lethbridge YMCA

Where to Stay

Park Lake Provincial Park makes a good base camp for exploring Lethbridge only 18 minutes north of the city. Bird watch (we saw lots of pelicans!), paddle, fish, walk the nature trails, or visit the beach and playground. If you reserve in advance, you can camp lakeside!

Park Lake Provincial Park Campground, Alberta
Our lakeside campsite at Park Lake Provincial Park, Alberta

Getting Here

Lethbridge is located two hours southeast of Calgary.

For a pretty picnic spot near Nanton (halfway to Lethbridge), stop at Coutts Centre for Western Canadian Heritage. It’s a popular wedding venue with 18 lovingly tended gardens and restored historic buildings. Mark your calendars: Coutts Centre is hosting an Arts Festival on July 21, 2019 with live performances and Shakespeare in the Garden.

Coutts Centre for Western Canadian Heritage, Nanton
Coutts Centre for Western Canadian Heritage, Nanton

Acknowledgements

Thank you to Tourism Lethbridge, Alberta Parks, Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden, Fort Whoop-Up, Alberta Birds of Prey Centre, and Coutts Centre for Western Canadian Heritage for hosting us! For more information on fun things to do in Lethbridge, visit Tourism Lethbridge.

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