12 Outdoor Adventures in Red Deer That Will Transform Your Life

Tamer Faisal
15 Min Read

Red Deer, a city filled with fun and excitement just waiting to be explored! This guide is here to show you the best outdoor adventures in Red Deer that will totally transform your life. 

Our guide is designed to help you make the most of your visit with fun and unique things to do that’ll create unforgettable memories.

You’ll find peaceful options like canoeing and paddleboarding, together with heart-pounding choices like the canyon coaster and rafting tours.

So, what are you waiting for? Take a look at our recommendations and let us guide you to some of the most exciting outdoor adventures in Red Deer!

1. Pedal Around on Bower Ponds

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Looking to soak up the sun and enjoy the great outdoors in Red Deer? Bower Ponds Recreation offers an exciting Pedal Boat Adventure that you won't want to miss.

Feel the gentle breeze against your skin as you pedal your way through the tranquil waters, leaving the hustle and bustle of everyday life far behind. 

Perfect for families, friends, or anyone looking to spend quality time together, a pedal boat adventure at Bower Ponds is the ultimate summer activity.

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If you're planning an activity with a group, Bower Ponds offers group rates

And don't worry about getting hungry after all that paddling. The on-site café has a delightful menu that includes soft serve ice cream, assorted snacks, and cool, refreshing drinks. You can relax on the patio and savor these treats while enjoying the beautiful views of the park.

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Bower Ponds offers more than just pedal boats. This spot has attractions for visitors of all ages. From wildlife sightings and playgrounds to historical landmarks like the Cronquist House, there's always something new to discover.

You can also visit the pavilion, outdoor washrooms, and amphitheater, making your visit even more enjoyable.

2. Horse-drawn Sleigh Rides

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Have you ever wanted to glide through scenic trails and enjoy nature's beauty while spending time with family or a loved one? Welcome to Horse-drawn Sleigh Rides at Heritage Ranch. With snow gently falling, the sound of horse hooves, and a blanket to keep you warm, it's a wonderful experience.

These enchanting rides provide a serene escape into the tranquil trails of Heritage Ranch, making it a perfect setting for families, romantics, or anyone seeking a delightful outing.

Cuddle up in a sleigh, wrapped in cozy blankets, and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.

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There are various options to serve different needs and group sizes. For a bit of romantic magic, the Private Carriage Ride for two is absolutely perfect.

If you're looking for a more communal experience, they have sleighs that accommodate groups from up to 8, 10, or even 20! It's a fabulous way to have a larger family reunion or a special celebration under the open skies.

A little insider tip: Dressing warmly and bringing extra blankets will make your adventure even more pleasant and snug. Plus, arriving a bit early is a good idea. 

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Another perk? After your ride, you can warm up at the fully licensed West Lake Grill. It’s a fantastic venue for a meal following your sleigh ride, perfect for wrapping up your enchanting adventure with some delicious comfort food.

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3. Discover River Bend's Trails

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Ever wanted to feel the cool rush of a river-fed pool while floating on a tube? Now's your chance at Discovery Canyon in River Bend!

Discovery Canyon offers more than just water fun. It has tube floating down a gently sloped canyon, where you can bring your own tube or rent one.

If you prefer staying dry (or want a break from the water), there's a nature-themed playground designed for kids to explore and let their imagination run wild.

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For families, Discovery Canyon has it all. They’ve got picnic tables for that perfect family lunch and a concession stand stocked with snacks and beverages.

Are your kids between 5 and 14 years old? They’ll love discovering the trickling rivulets and wading pool made just for them. It's the perfect spot for young adventurers to have a splashing good time!

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Before you go, remember to keep in mind some rules: no pets, no large RVs, and no lifeguards. That means it's a "use at your own risk" kind of place.

4. Explore Historic Fort Normandeau

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Have you ever wondered what life was like in early Red Deer? A trip to Historic Fort Normandeau is like taking a step back in time! 

The adventure begins at the Interpretive Centre. Here, the story of the Red Deer Crossing is brought to life through dramatic programs, fascinating artifacts, and engaging exhibits, both indoors and outdoors.

Don't miss the captivating 12-minute audio-visual show in the theatre. Throughout the summer, you can enjoy live programs that celebrate Red Deer's founding cultures, such as dancing to irresistible First Nations or Metis music, or learning to make traditional bannock or homemade ice cream—yum! 

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If you're part of a school or youth group, you'll be thrilled to know that Fort Normandeau welcomes bookings for guided programs and even overnight campouts in the authentic teepees.

And for those summer days, children can enjoy fun-filled day camps and teepee sleepovers where they can learn all about their heritage—talk about a cool way to connect with the past!

Next, step into the Stopping House. With its up-to-date exhibits and reconstruction of the original Fort at Red Deer Crossing, it brings early Red Deer history vividly to life.

There are many programs and seasonal events that offer an eye-opening glimpse into the early days.

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The beautiful grounds of Fort Normandeau make the perfect setting for a picnic or a relaxing afternoon by the river. With multiple picnic tables and fire pits on-site, all you need is a good company and perhaps a fishing rod! 

If you're planning a special event, Fort Normandeau can meet your needs. It offers a range of facility rentals, perfect for meetings, events, and even weddings.

The reconstructed stopping house, outdoor exhibits, picnic shelter, boat launch, and community gardens all provide a unique setting. 

5. Ride the Canyon Coaster

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When people think of ski resorts, they often picture only winter activities. However, that notion is completely flipped on its head with the fantastically thrilling Canyon Coaster at Canyon Ski Resort!

You can zip down a winding luge track, carved right through the verdant ski slopes and forest trails of Red Deer. This coaster transcends the ordinary—it's Alberta's first and only Canyon Coaster, and it stretches over 1,300 meters with an impressive 440-foot vertical drop!

What's incredibly cool about this coaster is that you can control your own speed! Yes, you read that right. Each rider has their individual brake system, letting them zip down as fast as 40 km per hour or slow down to soak in the scenery. 

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Here's some even better news for families: young adventurers as young as 3 can join in the fun too! Simply have them ride as passengers with a responsible person aged 16 or older, and voilà, the whole family can share in this amazing experience. 

Don't forget to strike a pose because there's a camera set up along the track capturing all the action shots! These photos make fantastic keepsakes and can be purchased at the photo kiosks once your ride ends. 

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Looking to organize a group trip or a special event? Canyon Ski Resort has various exciting group and party packages available. These include full access to the coaster, lessons, and even rental equipment.

The resort is perfect for school trips, family gatherings, or even birthday parties. They focus heavily on snow safety and outdoor recreation, making it an educational as well as exciting trip.

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6. Try SUP Paddle Boarding

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Have you ever wanted to try something new and thrilling on the water? Well, Red Deer has just the thing for you! Bringing together fun, fitness, and stunning views, Stand Up Paddle Boarding—or SUP for short—is an adventure that's hard to beat. 

With various SUP tours to choose from, there's something to fit everyone's taste and skill level. And don’t worry if you're new to this; certified instructors and top-quality gear will ensure you're in good hands.

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Feel like exploring nature? Check out the Six Bridges Tour, where you’ll paddle through the lovely River Valley. The journey starts at the Heritage Ranch lookout tower and ends at River Bend, offering plenty of photo-perfect moments along the way. And guess what? The equipment and shuttle service are part of the deal.

More of a city person? Then the City Slicker tour is your ticket to paddleboarding fun through the bustling heart of Red Deer. Soak in the urban charm while standing tall on your paddleboard.

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For those who love a bit of nighttime magic, the Glow Paddle tour offers an unforgettable experience. Paddling under the stars, your board will be lit up with special glow lights, adding an extra touch of wonder. 

And if you prefer exploring on your own, Mountain Surf Co offers equipment rentals. From half-day to full-day, and even three-day options, you’ll have everything you need for your paddleboarding adventure—board, pump, paddle, leash, and PFD included.

7. Paddle Down Red Deer's River

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Enjoy drifting down the peaceful waters of Red Deer’s river, surrounded by beautiful scenery, without a single worry.It’s a fantastic way for families and friends to make lasting memories together.

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After your paddle, refuel at the Bower Ponds refreshment stand. Trust us, after a vigorous adventure on the water, nothing beats indulging in one of their 30 flavors of soft serve ice cream or trying out the hard serve and novelty snacks available.

If you’re feeling parched, there are plenty of cold drinks like bottled pop, sparkling water, and iced tea to keep you refreshed.

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But Bower Ponds isn't only for thrilling solo or family adventures. It’s also a fantastic place for groups and gatherings.

You can celebrate a birthday, corporate event, or family reunion in the beautiful Fireside Room, which offers a cozy and charming ambiance perfect for any intimate event.

Paddling down Red Deer’s river truly is an experience like no other. With the ease of accessibility, delightful refreshments, and the option to host private events, it’s an adventure that should be on everyone’s Red Deer bucket list.

8. Try the Thrilling Tubing Slide

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Have you ever wondered what it feels like to zoom down a hill without a single flake of snow in sight? The Summer Tubing Slide at Canyon Ski Resort offers exactly that thrilling experience! Located on the same hill as their popular winter tubing, this summer activity is a hit among residents and visitors.

Using a special synthetic material called Neveplast, the slide mimics the slipperiness of real snow, allowing for an authentic tubing adventure all summer long.

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Why is it a must-try activity? Well, the Summer Tubing Slide isn't solely for adventurous kids and young adults but also for the young at heart—yes, even grandparents can join in on the fun!

Everyone in the family can participate, making it a perfect day for generations to create joyful memories together under the sun. And the slide has two exciting lanes, each 453 feet long. They are the longest summer tubing runs in Western Canada.

Worried about the climb? Don't be! The effortless uphill conveyor lift, known as the "Magic Carpet", will transport both you and your tube to the top. 

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The Summer Tubing Slide offers a unique blend of adventure and family-friendly fun, providing a refreshing alternative to traditional summer activities.

If you're in search of a unique thrill or just some quality family time, this slide should be at the top of your list. 

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9. Discover the Farm Museum in Red Deer

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Ever wondered what life was like on a farm back in the day? The Sunnybrook Farm Museum in Red Deer is the perfect spot to travel back in time and explore Alberta's farming history.

As the oldest farm in Red Deer, it's more than just a museum – it’s a celebration of the province's agricultural roots and enchanting tales of pioneer families.

For those who want a hands-on experience, why not feed the chickens or enjoy a delightful wagon ride around the farm? Ever milked a cow before? Here’s your chance!

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If you’re planning a special event, this place is a dream come true. With its charming setting and historical appeal, the museum is a fabulous venue for birthday parties, weddings, and family gatherings.

Their party packages include private reservations along with guided tours and an array of engaging activities that will leave your guests amazed. Consider celebrating with the backdrop of a farm straight out of the early 1900s.

The fun doesn’t stop there! Sunnybrook Farm Museum hosts a variety of exciting events throughout the year. Fancy sliding down a hill, sleigh rides, and roasting marshmallows at the Family Snow Day?

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The log house at the farm showcases the modern conveniences from 1905, providing a unique glimpse into the lives of the early settlers.

Seasonal demonstrations with restored farming equipment highlight the farm's role in Red Deer's history, giving visitors a taste of genuine pioneer life.

10. Explore Hunter Valley Adventures

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Known for its spectacular rafting action along the Red Deer River, Hunter Valley Adventures offers a real immersion into nature.

This secluded spot is located on seven acres in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, mere one and a half hours from Calgary and three hours from Edmonton. 

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Once you arrive, you'll quickly see why this place is all about "getting back to the basics." There are rustic cabins, cozy campfires, and loads of family fun.

That's just a small taste of what you can expect. Their accommodations range from double-occupancy A-frame cabins, a spacious bunkhouse, to a family-style cabin complete with a loft for the kids. 

And guess what? For those who love tenting under the stars or bringing their trailers, there's still space! Their cookhouse stands out as a gathering place for group and family meals, and it’s not solely about feasting. 

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This spot also has outhouses and a wash station on site, keeping you comfy despite being off the grid. But the true charm of Hunter Valley Adventures? 

Returning guests often talk about how this place has turned into a beloved tradition. Take one returning guest, for example, who always brings their son here to celebrate his July birthday. The experience, the scenery, and, most importantly, the friendly staff make their yearly trek worth every minute.

11. Raft with Mukwah Adventures

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Looking for an adventure that combines the thrill of the rapids with the tranquility of nature? Then rafting with Mukwah Adventures is just what you need!

Perfect for a weekend getaway, this experience comes highly recommended by everyone who's tried it. 

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Join a guided expedition through the rugged wilderness of the Rocky Mountains' eastern slopes, where you’ll raft class II-IV rapids.

The attention to safety and the level of professionalism the guides offer is top-notch. Kaden and Mitch, the expert rafters, are known for their skillful guidance and friendly demeanor. 

After the exhilarating rush of the river, their rustic base camp on the banks of the Panther River offers a chance to chill out and soak in nature's beauty.

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Hungry after all that paddling? Mukwah Adventures offer the option to purchase a delicious dinner.

They go above and beyond to accommodate dietary preferences; for instance, the spread includes mouth-watering veggie burgers for those who skip the steak, it's absolutely amazing

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12. Skydiving Over Red Deer

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Envision plummeting through the skies at over 200 km/h, feeling the wind rush against your face as you fully experience the thrill of the ultimate adventure.

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At the Red Deer Skydive Center, they go beyond just offering a simple skydiving experience—they provide a full-fledged adventure. Their facilities are of the highest quality and have been designed to ensure everyone, from first-timers to expert pros, gets the absolute best experience possible.

We're talking about world champion-hosted events and the highest jumps around, making sure anyone can find that euphoric feeling.

On top of that, consider the camaraderie. Despite your level of experience with skydiving, it’s easy to see why many say they're "in good hands," thanks to pros like Gleb and Thumper.

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Looking to unlock your fearless side? This is the place. The Red Deer Skydive Center has the most aircraft capacity, which means more opportunities to jump and less waiting time.

The best part? Sharing that sky with some of the coolest people you’ll ever meet, creating memories and making friends that last a lifetime.

To Sum It All Up

From pedal boat rides to thrilling skydiving experiences, there's an activity for every interest. Feel the joy of gliding on a horse-drawn sleigh or the rush of zipping down the Canyon Coaster! Whether you're exploring historical sites like Fort Normandeau or riding the waves with a SUP paddle board, this guide has covered a range of fun activities to transform your time in Red Deer.

Don't miss out on these incredible activities! Make this season unforgettable by experiencing all that Red Deer has to offer. Remember, life's too short for the couch.

 For more amazing ideas and activities, be sure to check out ActiviFinder. Go on, get out there, and make memories!

Tamer Faisal
Tamer Faisal
Content Writer

Tamer is always up for an adventure and loves exploring new things. At ActiviFinder, he's on a mission to find and share the most exciting experiences, from fun activities and great restaurants to unique events. An interesting fact about Tamer is his passion for competitive gaming, adding another layer to his adventurous spirit.

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