Walking In a Winter Wonderland

Magic has arrived in Edmonton, where Hawrelak Park has been transformed into a scene straight out of Disney’s Frozen. Our very own ice castle has appeared, bringing even the most avid winter hibernators out into the wild. Icicles form an enchanting archway as you step into the castle, welcomed by the instrumental sounds of the Frozen theme song. People eagerly wait for their chance at sliding down the ice slide or to take a seat on the ice throne while the rest of us wander in and out of the paths, tall walls of ice on either side.

12735800_10153383651976728_503947543_n 12736323_10153383652526728_1546370895_n12714319_10153383649391728_1555438526_n

Everywhere you look is another mind blowing display of artistry – hundreds upon hundreds of hand-crafted icicles put together to form the entire castle.

12659833_10153383652581728_400554129_n 12674214_10153385477931728_1914160399_n 12735897_10153383652676728_474322470_n

Don’t forget to dress warm – it is an ice castle after all. Luckily, there’s a little spot for you to warm up your hands.

12695710_10153385517061728_270495134_n 12695718_10153383649426728_1814198152_n

… before exploring some more!

12714177_10153383651651728_2136570530_n 12735770_10153385477966728_1669518194_n12721824_10153383649301728_1249729424_n

I am SO happy that I turned around after walking out of the castle or else I might have missed this heart that had been carved into the ice.

If you’re in the area or ever have an opportunity to visit an ice castle, I highly recommend it! In the daytime, the ice, snow and winter sky creates a white on white on white appearance that is beautiful. But when darkness hits, the ice castle is flooded in beautiful lights – so a visit in the evening would be just as magical.



Sunday Snapshot: The Icefields Parkway, Alberta

This photo, taken along the Icefield Parkway between the Rocky Mountain towns of Jasper and Banff, AB is just one of the jaw-dropping views along this stretch of mountain highway. Looking up to the center of the photo, you can see one of the Rocky Mountain’s glaciers that supply all the surrounding lakes and rivers with pure glacier water. You can fill up your water bottle for a taste of some of the purest water in the world.

Sunday Snapshot: Alberta Winter


I’m a summer girl, always have been and always will be, but there is something to be said about a Canadian winter. One day everything is green and the next day there is snow up to your knees. One of my favorite things about winter is when the trees, rid of their leaves, are dusted in snow. On particularly cold and icy days, the trees will frost over and look like they do in this photo and the world transforms into a winter wonderland.

Do you have a photo you would like to share for Sunday Snapshot?
Submit it to whirlwindtravel@hotmail.com to see it here the next week!

Canadian Winter Festivals: Ice on Whyte

Ice on Whyte is an Edmonton-based winter festival where artists come together to develop some incredible pieces of art made entirely out of snow and ice. This year was the 10th annual Ice on Whyte Festival, located just off the popular and bustling Whyte Avenue, and the first one I had ever been to. Featuring beautiful ice sculptures crafted by artists from around the world, Ice on Whyte also offers family skating time, “frozen yoga”, activities for children, entertainment, hot chocolate, sticks of maple syrup taffy on snow, ice carving competitions and more, with each day presenting something new and exciting. The best time of day to go to Ice on Whyte? After dark, when ice sculptures are lit up in a fantastic array of colors.

Much to do at Ice on Whyte!

Musical Balance sculpture, one of my favorites

The Chase sculpture

Fragile sculpture, incomplete

SculptureThe slide at Ice on Whyte

Sculpture being carved


Summer Echo sculpture

Ice on Whyte sculpture

Fish sculpture

My very favorite, the buddha


Face sculpture

Full Sculpture


Mistress of the Permafrost sculpture

Mistress of the Permafrost sculpture

Did you like this post? Then follow Whirlwind Travel by clicking the “follow by email” button at the top right of the sidebar!

Sunday Snapshot: My Backyard

I love my backyard. When I’m not traveling and the weather is warm, I like to sit out there by the pond, tanning in the sunshine and listening to the fountain spray water. Now, at the beginning of November, this is my view. White, everywhere. Pond entirely covered in snow up past my knees, all within a day or two of constant snow falling. Despite the cold, there’s no denying how beautiful it is when the trees have snow-covered branches. That’s a Canadian winter for you!

Do you have a photo you would like to share for Sunday Snapshot? Submit it to whirlwindtravel@hotmail.com to see it here the next week!