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.
Alberta Culture Days – Across Alberta
Alberta Culture Days takes place from September 1 to 30, 2022, 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.
The Most Beautiful Art Tour in Alberta – Foothills County
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 from September 16th to 17th and go for a tour of these galleries and private studios located in the stunningly beautiful foothills of southern Alberta!
Blues and Barbecue – Drumheller
Roots, Blues, and Barbecue returns to the Badlands Amphitheatre with a lineup of talented Canadian musicians including Celeigh Cardinal, Angelique Francis, Shakura S’Aida, Samantha Martin & Delta Sugar and your musical host, Spencer MacKenzie. on September 10th.
Beakerhead – Calgary
Head to Calgary to experience human-powered mech, creativity and ingenuity with Hack the House, science mixed with rap, a makers fair, food, fun, reading, creating, wonder and so much more.
Taste the best of Strathcona County on September 11th. The event features Strathcona County independent restaurants and food trucks that are encouraged to use local ingredients. Meet local artists/artisans who will have their creations on display and for sale. Enjoy entertainment and activities throughout the evening.
Calgary Rotary RibFest
A modern-day meat brigade from September 9 to 11! The best ribbers in town are coming together to serve your favourite meats this summer. Dine at the best barbecue in Calgary with some cold beer, live entertainment, raffles, and more!
Mountain View Arts Festival
This is Mountain View County’s largest festival of its kind. Didsbury comes alive with all that is arts and culture in the region, including dancers, storytellers, musicians and songwriters, handicrafts, painters, potters, carvers – you name it, if it’s artsy, it’ll be here!
Chestermere Country Fair
Visit Chestermere Country Fair on September 10th and enjoy traditional fair activities including mutton bustin’, parade, Red Ribbon bench show, pancake breakfast, Harvest Market, kids zone, entertainment and more.
Saskatoon Farm Annual Fall Fair – Okotoks
Come enjoy a classic twist on a modern market this September 17th & 18th. The Annual Saskatoon Farm Fair will give you a taste of all things harvest here in Southern Alberta. Come enjoy a weekend with your family, friends, and community filled with local vendors, food, live music, vegetables, kids games, tractor rides, animal pens, face painting, and many more festivities.
Fahr Oktoberfest – Turner Valley
Experience a true Oktoberfest without flying for 10+ hours to Germany. Brauerei Fahr is pulling out all the stops to make this a great event on Sept 16th & 17th for you and invite you to celebrate German Heritage and German Culinary traditions – from beer to swift kicks in the rear end (Schuhplattler)!
Oktoberstock – A Bavarian Exposition – Camrose
Visit Camrose for an exciting new one day fall festival called Oktoberstock. A truly unique event, Oktoberstock is a twist on the traditional German Oktoberfest that will feature a day of activities and promote the diversity of the community of Camrose and the region. September 17, 2022 @ Camrose Regional Exhibition, 4250 Exhibition Drive, Camrose.
Play The Fool Festival – Edmonton
The Play the Fool Festival is an artist-driven, non-profit theatre festival that presents clown theatre and physical comedy performances.
Dandyfest – Calgary
The Dandy Brewing Company is hosting three days of celebrating all things Dandy, food, music, art, and most importantly beers. Taste more than 30 different beers and treats from over 20 breweries, distilleries, and cideries from across North America.
Banff Ghost Walks
Get 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.
Heritage Inn International Balloon Festival – High River
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 21st to 25th, 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.
Hard Luck Canyon – Whitecourt
A visit to HardLuck Canyon is a perfect day trip 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 the 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 weren’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.
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.
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. The 22nd Calgary International Film Festival will occur from September 22 – October 2, featuring stand-out stories and once-in-a-lifetime experiences in the cinema or at home with streaming.
The Kraay Family Farm and Corn Maze – Lacombe
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 24th for a celebration of heritage, arts, and culture filled with a variety of activities, food, and festivities.
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.
Strathearn Art Walk – Edmonton
This annual celebration of the arts strives to bring out the best in Edmonton by bringing people together to celebrate emerging and professional art and music, all with the scenic backdrop of our beautiful river valley and city skyline.
Harvest Moon Festival – Grimshaw
Harvest Moon Festival on September 10th will feature an open-air market, show n’ shine, children’s play area, live entertainment by Honey Cowboy, Big Guitar, beer gardens and a silent auction!
Enjoy the Night Sky at Lakeland
See shooting stars & northern lights! Enjoy a night out at Lakeland Prov. Rec. Area. Details
Alberta Star Party
Join for the annual Alberta Star Party from September 23rd to 25th. Get together with other astronomers at a camping event where you can enjoy speakers during the day and the sky during the night.
Fall & Harvest Festivals in September
These harvest or fall season festivals in Alberta all have their way of making the most of the end of summer, and can each be a fun way for all ages to enjoy it all: the harvesting, the pumpkins, the cosy bonfires, and the changing colours in the countryside.
- South Peace Centennial Museum Harvest Festival — September 10, 2022
- Penhold Annual Fall Festival — September 9-10, 2022
- Killam Scarecrow Festival — September 10, 2022
- Bonnyville Fall Fair & BBQ Bash — September 10, 2022
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.
Fort McMurray Marathon
Explore FortMcMurray on a Marathon run on September 25th. The Fort McMurray Marathon has 6 different race lengths – Full Marathon (42.2km), Half Marathon (21.1km), 10km, 5km, 3km and Kid’s Fun Run.
Kaleido Family Arts Festival – Edmonton
Kaleido welcomes arts and cultural experiences with multi-arts collaborative performances such as music, dance, theatre, film, literary and visual arts with performances on rooftops, sides of buildings, back alleys, parks and found spaces.
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 spooktacular rides. There will be face painting, scavenger hunt, fun family photo opportunities and more!
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.
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.
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 are 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.
Visit Granary Road to watch a live apple cider press, enjoy a cup of cinnamon hot apple cider, go “bobbing” for apples, discover various apple jams, jellies and syrups, and more during the annual Apple Festival.
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.
Star Sessions at Jasper SkyTram
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. In September and October, you can also blast off with astronomy experts from The Jasper Planetarium for an exclusive dining and stargazing experience atop the Jasper Skytram.
J.J. Collett Natural Area – Lacombe
Spot a variety of bird species and animals like coyotes, and 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.
Skyline Luge – Calgary
Climb aboard your Luge cart that features brakes and a 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.
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, and explore our nationally-recognized archaeological excavations.
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.
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. It is very rare not to see some sort of wildlife in Waterton, whether 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.