23 Best Places And Things To Do in Fort Smith, Canada

Fort Smith is a charming and picturesque town located in the Northwest Territories of Canada. Surrounded by stunning natural beauty and rich cultural heritage, it offers visitors a wide range of experiences. Here are some of the best places to visit and things to do in Fort Smith, Canada:

1. Wood Buffalo National Park

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Fort Smith serves as the gateway to Wood Buffalo National Park, the largest national park in Canada and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This vast wilderness is home to diverse wildlife, including the iconic wood bison and the endangered whooping crane. Explore the park’s pristine landscapes, hike its trails, go birdwatching, or simply immerse yourself in the tranquility of nature.

2. Pelican Rapids


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Located on the Slave River, Pelican Rapids is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts. The roaring rapids attract kayakers and rafters, offering thrilling adventures on the water. Enjoy a guided tour or rent equipment to experience the adrenaline rush of navigating the rapids. The area is also great for fishing, with an abundance of Northern Pike and Walleye.

3. Northern Life Museum and Cultural Centre

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Discover the rich history and culture of Fort Smith at the Northern Life Museum and Cultural Centre. The museum showcases exhibits on the region’s Indigenous heritage, fur trading history, and the development of the town. Learn about the traditions, stories, and artifacts that shape the local identity.

4. Canoeing and Kayaking

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The waterways surrounding Fort Smith offer fantastic opportunities for canoeing and kayaking. The Slave River and its tributaries provide serene paddling experiences through beautiful landscapes. Rent equipment locally or join a guided tour to explore the calm waters, spot wildlife, and immerse yourself in the serenity of nature.

5. Fort Smith Mission Territorial Park

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Step back in time at the Fort Smith Mission Historic Park, where you can explore the remnants of a 19th-century Hudson’s Bay Company trading post and a Catholic mission. Walk through reconstructed buildings, learn about the area’s fur trade history, and appreciate the cultural significance of the site.

6. Mid-Autumn Festival

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If you happen to visit Fort Smith in September, don’t miss the Mid-Autumn Festival. This annual celebration is a significant event for the local Chinese community and features vibrant cultural performances, dragon and lion dances, lantern displays, and delicious food. Experience the lively atmosphere, sample traditional Chinese cuisine, and join in the festivities as the community comes together to celebrate.

7. Cross-Country Skiing

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In the winter months, Fort Smith transforms into a winter wonderland, offering excellent opportunities for cross-country skiing. Explore the snow-covered landscapes, follow the groomed trails, and marvel at the serene beauty of the snowy forests. Rent equipment locally and enjoy these peaceful winter activities amidst the tranquil wilderness.

8. Dark Sky Festival

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The Dark Sky Festival in Fort Smith, Canada, is a captivating event that celebrates the mesmerizing beauty of the night sky. This festival offers visitors a unique opportunity to witness the dazzling Northern Lights, stargaze under pristine dark skies, and participate in engaging workshops and presentations by renowned astronomers. Immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring wonders of the universe during this unforgettable celestial celebration.


9. Hiking

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Fort Smith and its surrounding wilderness are perfect for those seeking a more immersive outdoor experience. Explore the hiking adventure. Discover remote trails and be surrounded by the tranquility of nature. Keep an eye out for wildlife sightings, and enjoy the serenity and solitude of the wilderness.

10. Backcountry Camping

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Experience the thrill of backcountry camping in Fort Smith, Canada, where pristine wilderness awaits. Venture into the rugged landscapes and set up camp in serene locations surrounded by nature’s tranquility. Explore remote trails, encounter wildlife, and immerse yourself in the breathtaking beauty of the Canadian North during this unforgettable outdoor adventure.

11. River Cruises

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Take advantage of the beautiful waterways around Fort Smith joining a river cruise. Alternatively, hop on a river cruise to relax and appreciate the natural beauty as you glide along the water, often accompanied by knowledgeable guides who share insights about the region’s flora, fauna, and history.

12. Pelican Rapids Golf & Country Club

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Golf enthusiasts can enjoy a round of golf at the Fort Smith Golf Club. This picturesque 9-hole golf course offers stunning views of the surrounding landscape, including the nearby rapids of the Slave River. Challenge yourself on the well-maintained fairways and greens while basking in the peaceful atmosphere of the course.

13. Ice Fishing


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During the winter months, ice fishing is a popular activity in Fort Smith. Join a guided ice fishing excursion and experience the thrill of drilling through thick ice to reach the water below. Drop your line and wait for a bite while enjoying the peaceful winter surroundings. It’s an excellent opportunity to catch Northern Pike or Lake Trout and savor the rewards of a successful day on the ice.

14. ATV and Off-Road Adventures


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If you’re an adventure seeker, Fort Smith offers opportunities for ATV and off-road enthusiasts. Explore the rugged terrain and scenic trails surrounding the town on an ATV or off-road vehicle. Experience the thrill of navigating through forests, crossing streams, and reaching breathtaking viewpoints that offer panoramic vistas of the surrounding lands.


15. Stargazing

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With its remote location and minimal light pollution, Fort Smith provides excellent conditions for stargazing. On clear nights, marvel at the sparkling canopy of stars above. Set up a telescope or simply lay back and enjoy the spectacle of the night sky. Witness constellations, shooting stars, and the Milky Way in all its glory, creating a magical and awe-inspiring experience.


16. Slave River

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The Slave River is a majestic waterway flowing through Fort Smith, Northwest Territories. Known for its scenic beauty and thrilling rapids, it offers exciting opportunities for water sports enthusiasts. Visitors can experience the adrenaline rush of white-water rafting or kayaking while taking in the stunning natural surroundings. With its unique blend of adventure and picturesque landscapes, the Slave River promises an unforgettable experience for visitors seeking an outdoor adventure.

17. Dog Sled Race

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Experience the thrill of a dog sled race in Fort Smith, Canada! Witness the exhilarating speed and agility of these remarkable teams as they navigate through the stunning northern wilderness. Join the excitement and cheer on the mushers and their loyal canine companions as they compete for victory. Immerse yourself in the rich history and culture of dog sledding while enjoying the breathtaking landscapes of Fort Smith. A truly unforgettable adventure for all outdoor enthusiasts.

18. birch bark biting

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Discover the unique art form of birch bark biting in Fort Smith, Canada. Witness skilled artisans delicately creating intricate designs by biting into birch bark. Experience the rich cultural heritage and learn about the traditional methods passed down through generations. Immerse yourself in the beauty of these handcrafted masterpieces and explore the connection between nature and art in this captivating artistic tradition. A must-see attraction for art enthusiasts and those interested in indigenous culture.

19. Visit Local Farms and Farmers’ Markets

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Fort Smith and its surrounding area have a thriving agricultural community. Take a tour of local farms to learn about sustainable farming practices and interact with farm animals. Additionally, visit farmers’ markets to sample fresh produce, homemade preserves, and local delicacies. Support local farmers and artisans while enjoying the flavors of the region.

20. Historical Walking Tours

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Embark on a historical walking tour of Fort Smith to delve deeper into the town’s past. Follow designated routes or join guided tours that take you through the historic streets, highlighting significant landmarks and sharing stories from the past. Learn about the early explorers, fur traders, and settlers who shaped the town’s history, and appreciate the architectural heritage that still stands today.


21. Fort Smith Snowboarding Club

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The Fort Smith Snowboarding Club is a vibrant community for snowboarding enthusiasts in Fort Smith, Northwest Territories. The club offers a welcoming and supportive environment for riders of all skill levels. Members can enjoy access to local snowboarding slopes, organized events, and opportunities for skill development. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced snowboarder, the Fort Smith Snowboarding Club is a fantastic way to connect with fellow riders and embrace the thrill of snowboarding in this beautiful region.

22. Visit the Fort Smith Public Library

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The Fort Smith Public Library is a hub of knowledge and a great resource for visitors and locals alike. Spend some time browsing through its collection, check out local literature, or attend book clubs or author events. The library often hosts cultural and educational programs, making it a valuable center for community engagement.

23. Learn Traditional Archery

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Engage in the ancient art of traditional archery by joining archery workshops or lessons. Learn about the history, techniques, and cultural significance of archery in the region. Test your skills by practicing target shooting or participating in friendly archery competitions with fellow enthusiasts.