A 25-minute drive east of Edmonton, Alberta, is the Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village. This 320-acre property (75-80-acres open to the public) has over 30 heritage buildings that have been transported here from all over east central Alberta.
Ukrainian Village Heritage Buildings
When the Ukrainian people first immigrated to Canada in 1891, most of them left behind less than 5-acres of land. When they arrived in Alberta, the Canadian government offered them 160 acres for $10. Needless to say, that’s an important reason that they stayed.
Some highlights of the heritage buildings in the Ukrainian village are:
The difference in the farmhouses, represented from when the Ukrainian farmers first arrived and once they had been settled for 20 years.
The collection of churches that were such an important part of building their communities and creating a new life in Canada.
A working grain elevator from 1928.
A blacksmith shop and house from 1929.
A sod hut that travellers can go inside and ask questions of the costumed interpreter who “lives” there.
Living History Museum
Everything inside the Ukrainian village takes visitors back to the early 1900s. Staff are dressed in period costumes and speak with Ukrainian accents. When asked questions, they respond as if they’re in that time period and can answer questions about their lives, immigration experience and lifestyle here in Canada.
Interesting facts about the Ukrainian village:
Extensive landscape changes were made to match what the Ukrainian immigrants would have lived in after they arrived and began farming.
All gardens are planted with real Ukrainian produce.
The site officially opened in 1983/84, after work was started in 1971.
Pich (pronounced “peach”) is a clay stove.
About 40,000 people travel to the attraction each year.
Special events like a celebration of Ukrainian dance, vintage car show, music festival, heritage food festival and the Ukrainian Day are sprinkled throughout the year.
Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village
It is located on highway 16, 50 km (30 mi) east of Edmonton and 3 km (1.8 mi) east of Elk Island National Park. Signage along the highway is good from both directions, so just keep a lookout for those.
Phone: (780) 662-3640
Edmonton Canada Hotel
The Union Bank Inn in downtown Edmonton is a classy boutique hotel on Jasper Avenue, a half an hour drive from the Ukrainian village. Guest rooms are all decorated in gorgeous fabrics and rich colours, and the suites have jetted bathtubs. The 1910 building has kept its heritage value and the hotel now has a contemporary wing for business travelers.