Imagine a beach without the crowds, the noise, and the seemingly endless amount of time it takes to find the perfect spot to put down your towel.
Even though it seems impossible, a beach like this actually does exist. You just have to know where to look.
In Edmonton, the capital of Alberta, Canada, locals have been buzzing about a secret (some say accidental) beach that has cropped up on the Edmonton River Bank. The beach slowly emerged when the city began constructing two bridges across the river.
As word got out about the newly discovered beachy area, people started to venture through the brush, towards the river bank, to explore the sandy stretch that has grown significantly since construction ramped up. Now the famous hockey town is also a low-key beach town.
Around Edmonton, you’ll see boutique shops selling shirts that say “Secret Beach, Edmonton” or “Accidental Beach.” Some locals have even taken it upon themselves to try to make the beach a permanent part of the community. In order to do this, rocks that were placed in the river for construction purposes will have to be readjusted and left in the river for good.
If efforts aren’t made to protect the beach, travelers will likely only have another two years to visit it before construction is completed and the sandy shore is swallowed up by the river.
Here's how to visit this hidden gem like a local, according to Raising Edmonton: Park near 98th Avenue and 95th Street, then head east along the paved path nearby. Switch to the multi-use trail on the left, and follow it until you see an opening to a single track trail. Take this route and pass the first entrance to the beach you see. When you spot the second entrance, past the birdhouse, take it to get down to the river.
The website also notes that although it is safe to swim in, the water currents are quite rough at times, so exercise caution when taking a dip.