DrumhellerDrumheller is a town in the Southern Alberta region of Alberta, Canada, famous for the rich deposits of fossils found in the area. Set in a characteristic "badlands" valley carved in the plains by the Red Deer River, Drumheller rose through coal mines — now abandoned — early in the 20th century. Now this town of 8,000 gets hundreds of thousands of visitors between May and September, making it the hub for tourism in the area.
The town is nestled in the Red Deer River valley. Near the bridge where the highways cross the river stands an tall sculpture of a Tyrannosaurus Rex and the Visitor's information centre, so this makes a good reference point. Downtown Drumheller is just south and east of this bridge.
Drumheller tourist information is broadcast on FM 94.5.
The weather is usually very hot in the summer (above 30°C, 85°F). Remember to carry mosquito repellent — there are lots of mosquitoes around!
Drumheller is located at the convergence of provincial highways 9, 10, 56, 575, and 576.
Drumheller is northeast of Calgary, about 1 hour 45 minutes by car. Drive east along the Trans-Canada Highway (Highway 1) to Highway 9, which travels north and east to Drumheller. An alternate route is to drive north along Highway 2, then east along Highway 72 (exit 295), which connects with Highway 9 in the small town of Beiseker. Travelers can approach from the east by taking Highway 9 (Saskatchewan Highway 7) from Saskatoon or taking the Trans-Canada Highway from Regina and then go north on Highway 56.
Tour companies offer day trips to the Royal Tyrrell Museum and the Drumheller Valley. Call the Royal Tyrrell Museum for more information.
Independent travelers staying in Calgary, but wishing to see sights in the Drumheller area without renting a car, may wish to consider the Canadian Badlands Day Trip from Calgary. Sights include the Royal Tyrrell Museum, Horseshoe Canyon, the Atlas Coal Mine museum and the hoodoo rock formations. Serious dinosaur fans may find the visit to the Royal Tyrrell Museum somewhat hurried due to time constraints.
Drumheller is a small, rural town. The downtown is compact and easily walkable. Beyond that, you will need an automobile. A bicycle would also do, but during tourist season it is hot, and the roads don't have good bike lanes.
phone: +1 403-823-7707address: Highway 838A spectacular range of exhibits and activities showing off the rich fossils of the Alberta badlands, from dinosaurs to pollen. Interesting even to people who aren't fans of dinosaurs, which is confirmed by the hundreds of thousands of visitors per year. There are a variety of moderate hikes to fossil artifacts, starting from the museum during the summer months.
address: 60 - 1 Avenue WestFree maps and free tourist advice. Gift shop. Books room in area hotels (they have a board to check availability and pricing for that night). Features the World’s Largest Dinosaur statue, 6 feet tall, 151 feet long, four times the size of a real Tyrannasaurus Rex. For $4, you can climb up inside it and look out over the badlands.
phone: +1 403-823-1749address: Highway 838On the site of an abandoned coal mine, this land houses the Royal Tyrrell museum. It also has day use sites for McMullen Island and Mine Sites 1, 2, and 3. No camping. Washrooms available.
phone: +1 403 823-2600address: 901 North Dinosaur TrailOver 10,000 artifacts from the Victorian and Edwardian era, including a two-headed calf and a complete house bought from an Eaton's catalogue.
Mountain View Helicoptersphone: +1 403 334-4354Sightseeing flights over Horseshoe Canyon.
Fossil Worldphone: +1 403 823-6666address: 1381 Dinosaur Trail NorthDig up and take home fossils.
Greentree Mallphone: +1 403 823-5555Mall has a variety of shops, including food, gas, auto service, clothing, haircuts, and more.
Vietnamese Noodle HouseVietnamese noodles, ice cream, and a variety of other everyday fare in an unpretentious setting.
phone: +1 403 823-3318address: 305-4 Street WBurgers, subs (sandwiches), salads, pasta, pizza.
Triumph Cafephone: +1 403 823-4543address: 100 S Railway AveLocated in The Drumheller Inn.
Sizzling Housephone: +1 403 823-8098address: 160 Centre StSzechuan, Peking, and Thai Cuisine. Weekday buffet lunch. Buses welcome. Claims recommendation by "Where to Eat in Canada" as one of country's top 500 restaurants.
Fred & Barney's Family Restaurantphone: +1 403 823-2803address: Highway 9 SChinese & Western buffet. Bus tours welcome.
phone: +1 403-823-2344address: 109 Centre StreetFine dining made from a Red Seal Chef Dennis Standage. One of the best little restaurants in Alberta.
The Recovery Tap Housephone: +1 403 823-2340address: 30 Railway Avenue WestGreat steaks, sandwiches and regular pub food
The Vintage Tap House
phone: +1 403 823-8887address: 800- 680 2nd St SEWaterslide, guest laundry, high speed internet. Family suites and kitchen suites available.
The Drumheller Innphone: +1 403 823-8400address: 100 S Railway AveAir-conditioned rooms, indoor pool, whirlpool. "Drumheller's only full service hotel", they claim.
phone: +1 403-823-7700address: 1103 9 Hwy SPool. Hot tub. Guest Laundry. High speed Internet.
Rivergrove Camgroundphone: +1 403 823-6655On the river, just across from downtown. Cabins. Full service facilities. Washroom & showers. RV waste dump. Laundry.
Horseshoe CanyonBeautiful badlands geology; offers good hiking if the rain hasn't made the rocks too slippery. Believed by some to be haunted.
Dinosaur TrailThe Dinosaur Trail is a excursion. Drive northwest and north out of Drumheller on Highway 838. Pass the Royal Tyrrell Museum and Horsethief Canyon. Highway 838 then turns west, and crosses the river at Bleriot Ferry (the Visitor Information Centre can provide the ferry schedule). Go a bit further west, then south on Highway 837 to Highway 575, which follows the west bank of the river back to just south of Drumheller.
RosebudRosebud (Alberta) is southwest of Drumheller. Drive south on Highway 9. After it turns west, drive more to get to the Rosebud crossing.
phone: +1-403-677-2001address: 106 Martin Avenue, Rosebud
- East Coulee is southeast on the Hoodoo Trail, a drive along Highway 10 through Rossdale and Cambria. Access to the Willow Creek Hoodoos interpretive trail is in Cambria, southeast of Drumheller. The Atlas Coal Mine in East Coolee, a National Historic Site, features Canada's last wooden tipple (structure for emptying coal out of train cars).
- Brooks. Dinosaur Provincial Park near Brooks, 177 km to the southeast, is a and has fossil exhibits that complement the Royal Tyrrell Museum here. But allow at least three days to see them both. The drive takes about 2 hours 15 minutes by car. Take highway 56 southeast and south for 73 km to Highway 1, the Trans-Canada Highway. Go 56.1 km east to Brooks. Exit there, go 6 km north on Highway 36, and then east along Highway 54 to the park.