Dinosaurs may have disappeared millions of years ago, and we may never have the chance to see these beasts in person, but there’s still plenty of opportunities to uncover fossils and explore the sites they once roamed. Home to some of the richest fossil sites in the world, Alberta is a bucket list destination for amateur palaeontologists and dinosaur enthusiasts looking to dig and explore.

Take a trip back in time and check out these places in Alberta where you can see and experience, firsthand, the region’s rich dinosaur history.

Dinosaur Provincial Park

Situated in the badlands of southeastern Alberta, Dinosaur Provincial Park holds one of the largest collections of dinosaur bones and fossils on earth. Over 4,500 dinosaur skeletons across 44 species have been uncovered at the UNESCO World Heritage Site to date since the first was discovered in 1880. Book a tour with a park interpreter and hike right into the heart of Dinosaur Provincial Park, where you can search for preserved fossils that can easily be found just beneath the surface.

Home to five trails with spectacular scenery, outdoor enthusiasts can also head on a self-guided hike through Dinosaur Provincial Park. Head down the Cottonwood Flats Trail to explore the park’s lush riverside ecosystem, take the Coulee Viewpoint Trail for surreal badlands scenery or venture through the Badlands Trail to see hoodoos and pinnacles around sandstone ridges. Regardless of which one you opt for (if not all), the landscape will leave you breathless.

Who knows, you may even discover something new. In fact, the latest discovery of a new species of tyrannosaur was made by an amateur fossil hunter in a rural area about 100 km from Dinosaur Provincial Park.

Royal Tyrrell Museum

Take a 3.9‑billion-year journey through time at the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology in Drumheller, Canada’s only museum dedicated exclusively to the study of ancient life. The museum features nine impressive, ever-changing exhibits with some of the most remarkable finds. The main attraction, however, is the Dinosaur Hall. Here, you’ll find more than thirty complete skeletons and fleshed-out replicas of dinosaur species, including the Camarasaurus and Tyrannosaurus.

Outside the Royal Tyrrell Museum, you can hike and hunt for fossils in the badlands of Midland Provincial Park. Head on a guided tour with one of the museum’s experts to learn about Alberta’s rich dinosaur history, touch authentic fossils and witness the dinosaur remains still in the ground.

Philip J. Currie Dinosaur Museum

While dinosaur remains are more prevalent in southeastern Alberta, travel northwest of Edmonton to a town called Wembley and you’ll find an impressive collection of fossils and intriguing artefacts at the Philip J. Currie Dinosaur Museum. The museum’s exhibits will take you on a 360 million year journey from the prehistoric era to the oil exploration days of present-day Alberta. In the main gallery, you’ll have a chance to see the new discoveries in Alberta as well as the diversity of life in the Wapiti Formation ecosystem.

You can also head on a tour along Pipestone Creek and explore the region’s stunning natural history while learning about it’s palaeontology discoveries in the field.

Choice Hotels in Southern Alberta