Saturday, November 14, 2009

Idle Vacation

We happen to be a mere 20 minutes from West Edmonton Mall (WEM). The largest mall in North America and the fifth largest mall in the world. It boasts so many attractions like an amusement park, waterpark, zoo creatures, movie theatre, hotel, casino, skating rink, minigolf, and too many stores and restaurants to list. Unfortunately, all of this is lost on me. You see, I'm not really a mall person. I don't get the idea of going to the mall all day, eating there, or generally hanging out there. I like to go to specific stores for specific things, otherwise I feel like I'm wasting time. I'm weird, I know. So for me, WEM is viewed more like a great place to walk in the winter (as it spans 48 city blocks) rather than a shopping/attraction destination. That being said, it's got great window shopping appeal, making walking there a lot more interesting than walking around the average mall.

Sometimes, if we're lucky, we can catch the sea lion trainers going through their routine. We caught practically the entire show one morning as it looked as though they were going through it for some guests. We were the only other ones there! Usually when the show is on, it's so packed and crowded around the tank that it's really hard to see or hear what's going on.

They also have a pair of sloths and some ring tailed lemurs you can watch. If you get there early, you can see them being fed (sorry no picture of the sloth! They were all really hard to capture through the shiny glass. I assure you they were plenty cute, though!).

I also enjoy standing and watching the waves crash over at the waterpark. I'm sure it's a fun place to go during the cold winter months, but I'm not too keen on being swimsuit-clad.

Another great area to check out is T & T Supermarket and the little China Town area they have. It's a really great place to browse around in. You get to see a ton of really interesting food products and packaging (my favourite).

There's also a cute little koi pond in there!

I always have to stop at the Dream Tea House located right next to the supermarket. They have delicious bubble tea. I think I've tried almost all of their exotic flavours, each one better than the last.

I've never been skating on this rink, but it is open to the public. Most days they have minor hockey games (if that's your thing), figure skaters practicing, or youth skating lessons all of which you can watch for free.

I've even seen the rink turned into a wrestling arena. You never know what's going to be happening there!

I can't forget Galaxyland. I'm not a fan of rides, though there are plenty to choose from. There's also a bunch of arcade games you can play for cheap. It's basically like an indoor fair ground.

Finally, the stores I must visit every time I go (if they're open, of course) are Urban Outfitters, H&M and Forever 21 (when I'm with T), and now they've added Anthropologie which has really great decorating ideas.

If you're ever in the area, WEM is an obvious Edmonton must-see destination.

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