In 2006, near the end of my 2500-mile road trip in western Canada, after enjoying the amazing Canadian Rockies, Banff and Jasper National Parks, my friends and I decided to pay a visit to Edmonton, Alberta’s capital. What attracted us there is “the largest shopping and indoor amusement complex in the whole world” – West Edmonton Mall. So here we are:
The mall turned out to be quite unique and interesting. It is VERY big indeed. I saw a few things in there that I normally wouldn’t expect to see in a shopping mall, for example, a place for sea lion/dolphin shows, scuba diving, and an underwater aquarium:
or an ice rink:
or a Chinatown:
or a waterpark (with artificial waves and a beach):
or a roller coaster:
I was not able to tour the whole mall, so I didn’t get to see the golf course, the tropical forest, or the bungee jump. I guess it is a great idea to have all these features indoors so that people can have a fun place to go in the brutal cold winter. To further give you an idea of its size, here are some numbers:
The mall has over 800 stores and 100 eateries (I saw 5 McDonald’s on the directory), 58 entrances, and 27 movie screens. It sits across 5 postal codes and has space to park 20,000 vehicles. It employs 23,000 people and burns 325,000 light bulbs. And it costed over a billion dollars to construct. I had to admire the capabilities of human beings and the extent to which they determined to be entertained. This was the perfect last attraction to a road trip mainly focused on natural wonders and beauties.