A waterpark, amusement park, seal & penguin shows, ice skating rink, mini-golf, over 800 stores, 100 eating venues spread over 5.3 million square feet with visitation of around 30 million people per year – Welcome to West Edmonton Mall, the largest mall in North America!
They say it takes one hour and a half to walk the mall, thats not stopping at any attractions or stops to do some shopping. We’re not here to do that in one hit though, we are here for a couple of days and mostly for the attractions, not shops. If you are here for the shopping though, you can certainly go wild and spend up. Every thing from Dollarama to Gucci, Luis Vuitton and Tiffany is here.
The West Edmonton Mall is a destination in itself. Generally one thing a destination can’t control is the weather, but here it is always warm inside…
Opening in 1986, World Waterpark held the title of largest indoor water park in North America until 2020. It has a maximum capacity for 5000 people although they are operating on reduced capacity during the pandemic.
While it’s a cold and snowy minus 17 outside…
…the inside of the waterpark is a warm and toasty 31 degrees! Complete with a wave pool and several waterslides. It feels kind of strange that while it’s so cold outside we are wandering around in board shorts, cocktails in hand like we are at a resort somewhere in the The Caribbean.
There are 17 unique waterslides and attractions in the World Waterpark as well as a bar and a few food stalls selling hot dogs, burgers and pizza by the slice. A couple of drinks have given me the courage to brave the heights for the Twister. Im not a fan of heights and was slightly freaking out on my way up but coming down was another story, I seriously thought I would flip out of the partially covered slide! Thankfully I made it down safe with just a mouth and nose full of water.
Dinner at Earls.
Time for dinner, while the little ones go to The Old Spaghetti Factory, my cousin and I head for Earls.
Earls has been around for 40 years. A Canadian family company, it operates 69 restaurants mostly in Canada but also the USA.
I ordered a bottle of Murphy-Goode (USA) Chardonnay – What Cha Me Call It. At first I didn’t get the name until the lovely server said “I’ll be back with your what cha me call it”. I looked at the server a bit surprised as if to say “you don’t know what wine I have ordered?” Then he states “you have ordered the What-cha-me-call-it!”
These truffle fries are super yum with just the right amount of truffle giving them an earthy and nutty flavour.
The chipotle calamari is a fantastic dish. Not to strong on the heat, but I specifically love the coated and fried asparagus, zucchini and other vegetable that come with it. Delicious!
Both my cuz and I order the shrimp Hunan kung Pao. What is most interesting of this dish is you order the depth of heat by the number of chilli’s from one to six. We go for a two, my cousin is wanting to go higher she knows but I’m a bit of a chilli wimp. Although a little like a fancy 2-minute noodle dish, it is right en pointe, the shrimp (or prawns for us Aussies) are cooked perfectly and the whole dish is lovely .
Day one has been fun, we are staying a few minutes drive away, even though the West Edmonton Mall has its own hotel attached – what more could you want? Stay tuned for day two…