If you are visiting Alberta it is likely that your trip will begin in either Calgary or Edmonton. These cities have Alberta’s largest airports, so they may be your obvious choice for a vacation. However, the best Alberta small towns to visit also have a lot to offer.
Small towns in Alberta are home to an impressive selection of experiences and attractions. Whether you are seeking to enjoy the mountains, wild life, or small town charm, you can do that and more! After making a trip to Lake Louise, you will love the charm of small mountain towns.
This list also includes hamlets which in the province of Alberta are a small incorporated community with more than five dwellings.
Visiting Canada soon? This list of the best small towns in Alberta features 20 destinations you do not want to miss!
Here Are 20 Of The Best Alberta Small Towns To Visit
Bragg Creek, Alberta, Canada
Population: 432 (2021)
The Hamlet of Bragg Creek is only a 30 minute drive west of Calgary Alberta, where Highway 66 and Highway 22 intersect. Bragg Creek is one of the best Alberta small towns to visit, it is such a peaceful place for a day trip.
The laid back mountain culture and local charm make sure there are repeat visitors to Bragg Creek. The town is at the foothills of the rocky mountains. The scenery will take your breath away, and you will feel refreshed from the mountain air.
If you are looking for things to do in Bragg Creek the best place to start is visiting Bragg Creek Provincial Park.
Bragg Creek is the gateway to stunning Kananaskis country! Come visit one of Alberta’s best small towns in the heart of The Rockies!
Drumheller, Alberta, Canada
Population: 7,945 (2021)
On the edge of Midland Provincial Park, downtown Drumheller is the best small town in Alberta to use as a base to learn more about dinosaurs in Canada. This destination is quickly becoming one of the most popular places to visit in Alberta.
There is so many things to do in Drumheller, such as visiting the the Royal Tyrell Museum home of dinosaurs in Alberta. While you are here don’t forget to visit the badlands, and explore archeological sites.
Another one of the top attractions in Drumheller, AB is taking on the Rosedale Suspension Bridge.
Don’t forget, when you visit Drumheller you are taking a trip to the dinosaur capital of the world!
Bon Accord, Alberta, Canada
Population: 1,479 (2021)
Bon Accord, AB, is as an International Dark Sky Community. This is one of the most unique small towns in Alberta because it is the only city in Canada to have the dark sky distinction. You should definitely plan an over night trip here as its romance is unparalleled.
The rural community of Bon Accord has a population of approximately 1500. However, the town is expanding, it may not be small for long! What is most unbelievable about this destination is that it is only 40 km away from Edmonton. Despite being so close to the capital of Alberta, Bon Accord still has perfect dark sky conditions.
One of the best things to do in Bon Accord is taking a stroll through the Heritage Rose Garden, it is beautiful there.
Take a trip to Bon Accord home to Canada’s first Dark Sky Community. It is one of the best small towns in Alberta to visit!
Banff, Alberta, Canada
Population: 8,905 (2021)
When you visit Banff you feel like you have been whisked away to the French Alps. It is the perfect place for a luxurious ski vacation. Banff is known world wide for being one of the best small towns in Alberta Canada to visit.
The entire village of Banff is filled with charm! Whether you are here to hit the slopes or to enjoy the local cafes and chalet’s you will not be disappointed.
If you are looking for hidden gems in Banff AB, you might consider taking time at the Banff Upper Hot Springs. Its the perfect aprés-ski activity.
Nearby Banff National Park this is one of the small towns of Alberta that is often overlooked. However the views of the mountains are amazing here.
Mountain View, Alberta, Canada
Population: 13,958 (2021)
Mountain View is another Hamlet. It is one of the best small towns in Southern Alberta! The town of Mountain View is located at the base of the Rockies, which makes it a great place for exploring. The United States border is also in close proximity and there are many provincial parks nearby.
You will definitely want to put mountain view on your list of best Alberta small towns to visit. The town is located about an hour southwest of Lethbridge. It is a great stop to add if you are planning a road trip across the prairies.
Have you ever stepped on a glacier before? Another one of the best things to do In Mountain View Alberta is visiting the Colombia Icefield.
Mountain View is also near Waterton Lakes National Park. With numerous waterfalls, and stunning vistas it one of the best parks to visit in Alberta.
Canmore, Alberta, Canada
Population: 15,990 (2021)
Canmore Alberta has it all! This is one of the nicest small cities in Alberta that you can visit. The location of Canmore could not be better. It is just minutes away from Banff National Park, and Bow Valley Provincial Park. Both parks are must do’s while in Alberta.
You will love the vibes in Canmore. It has been a popular destination because of its many outdoor activities and wildlife. Many come here from the city to escape into nature. The town itself was established on the back of hardworking coal miners, that found a home here.
Don’t forget to visit 8th street! This charming avenue is one of the best things to do in Canmore, AB.
Canmore is one of the best small towns in Alberta to visit if you love the wilderness. Explore the best of Canada’s backyard, as you hike, ski, canoe and more in Canmore!
Rocky Mountain House, Alberta, Canada
Population: 6,302 (2021)
Rocky Mountain House is known for the historical site of the same name. The Rocky Mountain National Historic Site and Trading Post is the main attraction in this small town. The town itself is beside the beautiful North Saskatchewan River.
Your experience in Rocky Mountain House will install you with knowledge about the fur trade in Western Canada. Be fully immersed in important stories of Indigenous peoples and archaeology. During your visit you can also enjoy amazing camping at the historical park.
Near Rocky Mountain House is one of the best provincial parks in Alberta to visit. Crimson Lake Park, provides a terrific environment for enjoying the outdoors!
Finally, there’s an abundance of hiking and biking trails nearby, great for getting outdoors. Come discover Rocky Mountain House, one of the best small towns in Alberta!
Legal, Alberta, Canada
Population: 1,350 (2021)
Legal is often considered the best small town in Alberta. Those who live in the province know how special this place is! Legal is known for its beautiful murals like the one in the picture below.
This is one of the most french places in Alberta. The francophone community of legal was originally a settlement established by France. The now bilingual town was originally named after Bishop Émile-Joseph Legal.
If you are looking for things to do in Legal Alberta, the best place to start is visiting the Jurassic forest. This attraction is truly one of a kind.
Legal is also less than an hour south of Edmonton, which makes it the perfect day trip! It is definitely one of the best Alberta small towns to visit.
Pincher Creek, Alberta, Canada
Population: 3,373 (2021)
Located just east of the Canadian Rockies, Pincher Creek is one of the most beautiful Alberta small towns. When you visit here you will want to ensure you have enough time for hiking. There are picturesque trails everywhere in this small town.
The Castle Mountain Resort in Pincher Creek is one of the best places to stay in Alberta outside of Banff and Lake Louise. Choose this destination for luxury getaway. It has everything you are hoping for and more.
One of the best things to do in Pincher Creek is the Kootenai Brown Pioneer Village. You will have a unique experience as you are transported back in time.
After your stay in Pincher Creek you will know why it is one of the best small towns of Alberta.
Devon, Alberta, Canada
Population: 6,632 (2021)
Another one of the best small towns in Alberta Canada is Devon. Approximately 26 kilometres south of Edmonton, it is a great day trip from the provinces capital.
One of the popular attractions here is the University of Alberta Botanic Garden. It is also called the Devonian Gardens, but it is home to so many species of rare plants. The plants in this garden thrive because they are so well taken care of!
Devon Alberta If you are looking for things to do in Devon Alberta, the town is also home to the Canadian Energy Museum of Leduc. Another popular attraction is beautiful Voyageur Park.
Devon is the entrance point to southern Alberta! Come visit one of Alberta’s best small towns deep in the heart of mountains!
St. Paul, Alberta, Canada
Population: 5,921 (2021)
Originally named St. Paul des Metis. This is the best small town in Alberta to visit if you are looking for somewhere unique. St. Paul is home to the worlds first UFO landing pad. Everyone feels welcome here, including extraterrestrials. The close knit community will show you true Alberta hospitality.
This town is extremely rich in both Ukrainian and Metis history. St. Paul is located only 2 hours north of Edmonton. Get ready to experience amazing outdoor activities, and fantastic dining. As you explore this unique small town in Alberta there is always more to uncover.
Another one of the best things to do in St. Paul Alberta is the Art Walk. Begin at the UFO monument. Make your way past art on main street til you eventually reach picturesque Upper Therrien Lake. On the shores you will see amazing sculptures!
There are so many reasons why St. Paul is one of the best Alberta small towns to visit. Find out for yourself on your next trip to Western Canada.
Nanton, Alberta, Canada
Population: 2,189 (2021)
Nanton is considered one of the best Alberta small towns to visit. While you are here you must check out the Nanton Candy Store. Visitors come from miles to this sweet shop, that has the finest sugary choices!
If you are wondering about other things to do in Nanton Alberta, There are several museums to check out. Firstly, The Bomber Command Museum of Canada. Another popular attraction is the Grain Elevator Discovery Centre. You can also visit the Museum of Miniatures. All these attractions provide a unique experience.
Nanton is one of the best Alberta small towns to visit if yo want to learn more about Canada’s prairies.
Kananaskis Village, Alberta, Canada
Population: 280 (2021)
Inside the Kananaskis district improvement zone is the village of Kananaskis. It is hands down one of the best Alberta small towns to travel to.
Firstly, what you need to know about this town is that it is nearby Kananaskis Nordic Spa. This hidden gem is one of the places in Canada like Iceland’s Blue Lagoon. You will feel completely transported, and rejuvenated after your visit.
Another one of the best things to do in Kananaskis is staying at the Crosswaters Resort. They are the perfect hosts for a getaway in Alberta’s mountains.
Snuggled amongst the mountains Kananaskis Village has stunning views that you do not want to miss!
Vegreville, Alberta, Canada
Population: 5,673 (2021)
Vegreville has a rich cultural history and is a fast growing community. This is one of the best Alberta small towns to visit that will welcome you to make lasting memories.
Did you know Vegreville has the largest Ukrainian population in Alberta? The giant egg or ‘Pysanka’ is the worlds largest! It is the towns central landmark and therefore is impossible to miss.
Vegreville is only an hours drive away from Edmonton via Highway 16! If you are looking for getaways near Edmonton, Vegreville will be your home away from home. The town also has many new shops and restaurants that you will love!
Next time you are in Alberta make your way to Vegreville, one of the best small towns in Alberta!
Black Diamond, Alberta, Canada
Population: 2,804 (2021)
Another one of the best small towns Alberta has to offer is Black Diamond. There are never-ending experiences to be had here. From great dining, to fantastic local shopping your time in Black Diamond will be well spent.
At the heart of one of Alberta’s best small towns Black Diamond a very laid back and artsy atmosphere. it is common to see local community artisans. It is a great place to pick up a souvenir or something memorable for a loved one.
If you are looking for things to do in Black Diamond, Alberta, head to Bohemia. This adorable black diamond boutique has locally hand made and fair trade crafts!
Black Diamond and Turner Valley are the perfect small towns near Calgary Alberta for a day trip!
Turner Valley, Alberta, Canada
Population: 2,797 (2021)
At the base of the Rocky Mountains one of the best small towns of Alberta is Turner Valley. This region is the heart of Alberta, providing a gateway to the beautiful Kananaskis. There are so many cool things to do in Turner Valley, you will have a great time!
The town is less than an hour drive south of Calgary. On your way you will see stunning views as you get closer to the mountains.
This area is rich in history. This land is saved to Indigenous people while also being deeply important to Albertans because it is considered the birthplace of Western Canada’s oil and gas industry.
If you are looking for the best small towns in Alberta to visit, Turner Valley should be at the top if your list.
Sylvan Lake, Alberta, Canada
Population: 14,816 (2021)
Are you looking for one of the greatest Alberta small towns to visit? Consider closing Sylvan Lake as your destination the next time you are in the province or if you are looking for a quick escape from city life.
Sylvan Lake is one of the best places to visit in Alberta in the summer. There are great beaches, and amazing places to relax and bask in the sun. There are tonnes of lake side accommodations that you can use as a home base to start your adventure.
Once you are here, if you are looking for things to do in Sylvan Lake, head to the Sylvan Steam and Spa for a little pampering!
Located just 25 minutes from Red Deer Alberta along Highway 11, you can take a trip here for a weekend! You will love getting a taste of small town life.
Fort Macleod, Alberta, Canada
Population: 3,297 (2021)
One of the most vibrant small towns in Alberta to visit is Fort Macleod. This place is deeply special to the residents that call it home. After taking a visit here you will understand why they call Fort Macleod home.
Fort Macleod has a star studded history. In 2005 scenes from the acclaimed romantic drama film Brokeback Mountain were filmed here. Fort Macleod is also the birth place of Canadian singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell!
If you are looking for things to do in Fort Macleod Alberta, you can visit the beautiful Empress theatre. No trip to For Macleod is complete without a trip to the iconic building.
Fort Macleod is hands down one of the best Alberta small towns to visit! Do not forget about this tiny destination with lots to offer.
Slave Lake, Alberta, Canada
Population: 6,333 (2021)
Did someone say sandy beaches in Alberta? Thats right Slave Lake is one of the best Alberta small towns to visit for a beach getaway. Spending a weekend here will feel like paradise. Slave Lake itself is beautiful. The 28,400 km/sq Lake has clean clear blue water, you will forget your in the north!
If you are looking for the best places to visit in Northern Alberta, Slave Lake should be your first choice. Although it is more than 250 kilometres northwest of Edmonton, it is well worth the journey. Slave Lake, is the perfect destination for a long weekend retreat.
Another one of the things to do in Slave Lake, Alberta that you will love is visiting the Boreal Centre for Bird Conservation. Here you can see beautiful northern bird species.
Finally, do not hesitate to travel to Slave Lake, one of the best small Alberta towns to visit!
Population: 7,655 (2021)
Last but not least on this list of small town in alberta to visit is Innisfail. This quaint town has lots to offer. There are many indoor activities like museums and shopping. There are also great outdoor activities like swimming and hiking that you will love!
If you are looking for things to do in Innisfail check out the DINOS centre museum. Your experience will be enriching as you learn more about natural history. The hands on exhibits are perfect for children and families to explore together.
There are small towns in Alberta like Innisfail that are perfect for a quick trip! Enjoy exploring the province of Alberta!