10 Best Places to Live in Alberta | Ranked Guide

Alberta, Canada, is a province known for its stunning natural landscapes. These include the great Rocky Mountains, wide prairies, and deep forests. It’s an economic powerhouse. It’s driven by the energy, agriculture, and technology sectors. It offers diverse job opportunities. Alberta is also known for its cultural diversity. It hosts lively festivals. It has a rich heritage of Indigenous, European, and global influences. This mix makes it a lively and welcoming place to live.

Embarking on a journey to find the best places to live in Alberta, Canada? You are in the right place. This post will guide you to the top 10 places in Alberta that you can call home. You may prefer the bustling scenes of Edmonton and Calgary. Or the peaceful retreats scattered across the vast landscape.

Alberta has a variety of locales. Each shows unique aspects of Canadian life. Alberta has no sales tax. It also has a strong median household income. This makes it a prime destination for financial stability and quality of life.

Before you pack your bags, take a moment to ponder your preferences. Do you like bustling, multicultural cities? Or do you prefer quiet, small towns? Or do the stunning surroundings of a mountain backdrop ignite your interest? In Alberta, you can find the energy of a festival city. Or, you can find the calm of the countryside. You’re sure to find a community that fits your lifestyle.

10 best places to live in Alberta

City/TownPopulationStandout FeaturesProximity to Major Cities
Calgary1.3 MillionLeading oil industry, multicultural, vibrant nightlife
Edmonton1 MillionCultural festivals, strong job market3 hours to Calgary
Red Deer108,000Regional Airport, rich in parks and trailsMidway between Calgary and Edmonton
Medicine Hat76,000Natural gas resources, scenic parks3 hours to Calgary
Lethbridge107,000Education, healthcare, agriculture, and trades174 km to Calgary
Lacombe13,000Agricultural hub, historical charm1.5 hours to Edmonton
Sylvan Lake16,000Lakeside leisure, close community20 minutes to Red Deer
Grande Prairie67,000Beautiful landscapes, top healthcare system4.5 hours to Edmonton
Canmore14,000Proximity to Banff, outdoor sports1 hour to Calgary
Lloydminster36,000Unique cross-provincial living, booming job market2.5 hours to Edmonton

Exploring these top Alberta living destinations reveals a province teeming with potential for every lifestyle. Whether you seek the dynamics of an urban setting or the tranquility of rural life, Alberta offers a spectrum of living options to suit your personal and professional needs. Delve into the diversity of Alberta and discover where your future home awaits.

1. Calgary – Population 1.6 Million

Best places to live in Alberta: City of Calgary

I visit Calgary every summer; it is just a three-hour drive from Edmonton, where I live. There are many things to do in Calgary. If not the best, I rate this city as one of the best cities in Alberta. Calgary stands out as a vibrant metropolis, woven deeply into the cultural fabric of Canada. 

Celebrated as the largest city in Alberta, its spirited streets resonate with the energy of a multicultural populace, creating a kaleidoscopic urban experience that makes living in Alberta, Canada, a truly dynamic affair. If you love the outdoors, you will love Calgary. 

What elevates Calgary to the pinnacle of Alberta best places to live is not just its robust economy but also the range of recreational endeavors it presents to its residents. As I said above, there are many things to do in Calgary. Calaway Park is 30 minutes away, and Banff National Park is about a 1.5-hour drive from Calgary. The Calgary Zoo is one of the largest in Canada. There are many more fun activities that make this city stand out. 

  • The trails and parks welcome both those looking for adventure and those seeking solace because of the breathtaking beauty of nature surrounding them.
  • Calgary, an economic heartland, pulses with the lifeblood of significant industries, including the commanding oil sector.
  • Known for its array of festivals, none is more renowned than the Calgary Stampede, a rodeo extravaganza casting a jubilant glow on the city’s culture.
  • The city’s commitment to environmental stewardship allows you to enjoy a high quality of life while contributing to a greener world.
  • With an ever-expanding skyline, Calgary is a center of opportunities, from vast career options to educational pursuits.

As the sun dips below the Rockies, Calgary transforms, unfurling a nightlife that brims with rhythm and an array of dining sensations, further cementing its reputation as one of the best places to live in Alberta. Whether you seek the solace of the outdoors or the exuberance of city lights, your path leads to Calgary, a city where every sunset heralds new possibilities.

2. Edmonton – Population 1.4 Million

Best places to live in Alberta. The Walterdale Bridge at Night

Honestly, this is the city where I currently live with my family. When it comes to the top cities in Alberta, Edmonton shines brightly as a jewel in the crown of the province. You are thinking about settling in a place where the quality of life in Alberta is most important. Edmonton is a compelling example of urban efficiency, cultural wealth, and security. Stepping into this city, you can feel the harmony of its vibrant community. The oil and gas industry, farming, and cutting-edge technology dominate the sector.

Edmonton stands out as one of the safest places to live in Alberta. It’s not just about the thriving job market. It’s about the vibrant celebration vibe that fills the city. Known as Canada’s festival city, Edmonton hosts fifty festivals a year. These events showcase art, food, and a diverse heritage.

Edmontonians enjoy nature in all seasons. Winter sports are big here. The city boasts North America’s largest mall, West Edmonton Mall. Shop, enjoy attractions, and enjoy culture all in one spot.

When considering life in this prairie province, Edmonton stands out. It’s not just about the strong economy but also the tight-knit, safe, and culturally vibrant community. Many have settled and flourished here. Edmonton truly embodies Alberta living.

3. Lethbridge – Population 107,000

Modern city hall building with glass facade and flags flying at the entrance, among the best places to live in Alberta.

When searching for the top places to live in Alberta, Lethbridge emerges as a hidden gem nestled in the southern reaches of the province. Balancing the charm of small-town ethos with the vibrancy of urban amenities, Lethbridge serves as a beacon for those in pursuit of affordable places to live in Alberta that don’t skimp on lifestyle quality.

Lethbridge is celebrated for its cultural richness, manifested in an energetic arts scene that rivals urban centers. A hub for creativity, it offers an array of festivals, galleries, and live performances, contributing to its status as a noteworthy Alberta residential area. Supplementing its cultural allure are the multiple public parks that dot the cityscape, providing residents with serene escapes and bucolic beauty within city limits.

Prospective residents will appreciate the blend of academia and pragmatism as Lethbridge is home to respected post-secondary institutions. These educational bases not only foster a spirit of learning and innovation but also drive the employment sector, offering varied opportunities across multiple industries.

With its college and university, Lethbridge melds the vibrancy of student life with the serenity of prairie living, making it an attractive locality for those who value learning and leisure alike.

In this bustling prairie town, you’ll find that affordability doesn’t come at the cost of convenience or community. A friendly, welcoming atmosphere pervades the city, ensuring newcomers are quickly woven into the social fabric of Lethbridge’s deeply connected society.

  • Cultural Festivities: A testament to the town’s artistic leanings with events throughout the year.
  • Expansive Green Space: Offering a diverse range of outdoor activities, from leisurely strolls to energetic sporting events.
  • Diverse Job Market: Powered by Education, Healthcare, Agriculture, and Trade.
  • Educational Excellence: Home to both the University of Lethbridge and Lethbridge College.
  • Affordable Housing: Competitively priced real estate market catering to a range of lifestyle choices.

As you consider settling down in this southern Alberta city, rest assured that Lethbridge stands ready to welcome you with open arms, embodying the premiere ideals of affordability, culture, and community connectivity. It’s a place where small-city warmth meets the progressive pulse of a larger metropolis.

4. Red Deer – Population 118,000

Urban street with benches, a statue in the distance, and a landscaped pedestrian path showcasing one of the best places to live in Alberta.

When you’re considering the best neighborhoods in Alberta, Red Deer commands attention as a prime destination in your living in Alberta guide. Known for its significant roles in cattle rearing and oil production, it’s not just the great outdoors calling your name, but also the thriving job market that might pique your interest. Red Deer’s Regional Airport bolsters this city’s appeal, enhancing connectivity and making it an accessible hub for travel and commerce.

Recent investments in crime prevention have worked wonders in transforming Red Deer’s safety profile, sculpting it into a more secure haven and one of the top Alberta cities to live in. The city’s revitalization efforts have been felt in every corner, inviting new residents to participate in its ongoing renaissance.

Employment OpportunitiesAbundant in construction, education, oil industry, and mining sectors
Outdoor RecreationNear ski resorts, parks and trails suitable for various activities
AccessibilityRegional Airport offers convenient travel and business opportunities
Community SafetyEnhanced with recent investments in crime prevention measures
Urban AmenitiesCombines city lifestyle with access to nature’s offerings

The lush, verdant parks and scenic trails in the area are a clarion call to outdoor enthusiasts and those simply wishing to bask in the beauty of nature. Red Deer’s proximity to a variety of ski resorts adds a dash of adventure to the already vibrant urban life, affirming its position as a locale that balances work and play seamlessly.

  • Explore the natural beauty through an extensive network of parks and trails.
  • Discover a safe, nurturing environment for families looking for an enhanced quality of life.
  • Capitalise on the robust job market catering to a myriad of professional skills.

Whether you are seeking a new home or a lively place to expand your career, Red Deer encapsulates the essence of Alberta’s welcoming spirit and economic vitality. Its balanced approach to modern living amidst the rustic charm of rolling plains makes it one of the premier choices for anyone crafting their own living in Alberta guide.

5. Canmore – Population 17,000

Canmore, Alberta is one of the best places to live in Alberta.

Imagine a place where the great outdoors is your backyard, and every day greet you with panoramic mountain views and clear, cerulean lakes. If this is your ideal living destination, then Canmore is calling your name. Nestled near the bustling city of Calgary and the serenity of Banff National Park, Canmore stands out among the best neighborhoods in Alberta, pulsing with an adventurous spirit and community warmth.

Renowned for its diverse range of activities, Canmore is a treasure trove for anyone with a penchant for nature. Here, the blend of a relaxed lifestyle and thrilling escapades like fishing, boating, and trail hiking positions this quaint town among the top places to live in Alberta. And when the winter months roll in, the slopes come alive with skiers and snowboarders carving through fresh powder—an outdoor enthusiast’s dream.

But Canmore offers more than just a playground for nature lovers. The tourism sector flourishes year-round, bolstering job opportunities for those who make their home in this picturesque locale. Such economic vibrancy lends itself to an enticing real estate market, ripe with investment opportunities that beckon those looking to plant roots in a place that truly embodies Alberta living destinations.

With a world-class setting within reach and a community that welcomes with open arms, Canmore represents the harmonious balance of work, play, and unparalleled beauty.

  • An outdoor hub for activities in every season
  • Year-round employment opportunities, particularly in tourism
  • Opportunities for lucrative investment in local real estate

Whether you’re seeking your next adventure or a peaceful retreat to call home, Canmore extends an invitation to experience the allure of Alberta’s majestic landscapes and the vibrant tapestry of community life.

6. Camrose – Population 21,000

If embracing the calm pace of a small town amid nature’s bounty is what your ideal of living in Alberta entails, Camrose might be at the top of your list of Alberta communities. Situated in the heart of Alberta’s fertile farmlands, Camrose is affectionately known as “Rose City,” offering a bouquet of lifestyle choices that define the best places to settle in Alberta. The city’s proximity to Edmonton ensures you can enjoy the solitude of rural life without forfeiting the convenience of urban amenities.

Outdoor recreation in Camrose is plentiful, with an array of trails perfect for summer excursions and optimal conditions for cross-country skiing come winter. Embracing Alberta lifestyle choices means reveling in the picturesque scenery that “Rose City” renders beautifully year-round. With less focus on bustling nightlife, residents find Camrose’s allure in the peace and beauty of their surroundings.

  • Outdoor Activities: Enjoy the city’s extensive trail network for outdoor adventures in every season.
  • Proximity to Edmonton: Just an hour’s drive from the capital, seamless access to urban necessities and employment opportunities.
  • Small-Town Living: Experience community spirit and quiet, star-filled nights away from the din of the city.

Camrose doesn’t just endow its population with the serenity of the outdoors; it also offers an educational and healthy living environment, conducive to both young families and retirees. You’ll find a friendly atmosphere that can only come from a close-knit community, rich in participation and neighborly bonds.

Community AspectFeatures of Camrose
Leisure and RecreationLush green spaces and trails are ideal for hiking, biking, and skiing
Cultural AttractionsThe Bailey Theatre, Camrose & District Centennial Museum, and art galleries
EducationHome to the University of Alberta’s Augustana Campus
HealthcareAccess to the comprehensive services of the St. Mary’s Hospital
HousingAffordable housing options that provide exceptional value

In your quest to find the ideal locality for settling in Alberta, consider Camrose, where life unfolds amidst rose gardens and golden fields, and the essence of community thrives. Here, you’ll discover a harmonious blend of rural charm and vital amenities that could very well echo the sentiments of your perfect home.

7. Grande Prairie – Population 77,000

Urban street on a clear day with traffic lights and vehicles, featuring a left turn sign, in one of the best places to live in Alberta.

As you chart your course through Albertan living destinations, the city of Grande Prairie presents itself as one of the top places to live in Alberta, inviting you with its blend of picturesque landscapes and urban amenities. Situated in the alluring vistas of northwest Alberta, Grande Prairie’s popularity is partially attributed to its spectacular natural scenery, featuring rolling mountains and pristine lakes that captivate the hearts of residents and tourists alike.

Cities like Grande Prairie, where a strong healthcare system serves as a pillar of the community, exemplify the quality of life in Alberta. Ranking among Canada’s elite medical facilities, Grande Prairie is home to comprehensive healthcare services, including large regional hospitals equipped with cutting-edge technology and skilled medical professionals.

Muskoseepi Park marks the epitome of recreational splendor, offering residents a wealth of amenities that include an expansive skate park, an outdoor amphitheater, and trails ideal for biking and blissful walks. The park’s dedication to leisure and fitness is a testament to Grande Prairie’s commitment to fostering a community that values an active and healthy lifestyle.

  • Northern Gateway to Adventure: Grande Prairie provides easy access to outdoor excursions like skiing and hiking.
  • Economic Hub: Known for its thriving job market, particularly in the energy and forestry sectors.
  • Educational Opportunities: The city hosts key institutions like Grande Prairie Regional College.
  • Community-Centric: Year-round events encourage tight-knit social ties and community engagement.
  • Connectivity: Grande Prairie Airport connects you with major cities, enhancing business and travel options.

When considering your next move, Grande Prairie stands as a beacon of opportunity, inviting you to explore its vibrant community spirit, economic vitality, and scenic beauty. Discover life in a city that seamlessly blends the tranquility of the countryside with the conveniences of urban living, solidifying its reputation as a top contender among Alberta living destinations.

8. Airdrie – Population 84,000

Modern municipal building, among the best places to live in Alberta, with the sign "city of Airdrie" under a blue sky.

Discover Airdrie, a quaint town poised just north of Calgary, perfect for those yearning for a best-of-both-worlds setting among the Alberta residential areas. With a welcoming atmosphere for young families, Airdrie is celebrated for its high average household income and a plethora of amenities, all of which contribute to the allure of this community.

Your living in Alberta guide would be remiss without acknowledging the balance that Airdrie strikes, offering the charms of small-town life without skimping on the conveniences one might expect from larger cities. Whether you’re after peaceful residential streets or access to the business and cultural activities that Calgary affords, Airdrie grants you a serene domestic life, a mere stone’s throw away from urban excitement.

In the hunt for the best neighborhoods in Alberta, Airdrie emerges as a sterling choice. The town’s approach to community building has fostered a nurturing environment ideal for nurturing family bonds, paving the way for a stable and contented existence. The local schools, recreational facilities, and shopping areas collectively enrich the tapestry of day-to-day life, ensuring every resident finds their niche.

Community AttributeHighlights
Family OrientationAirdrie endeavors to be a place where families can flourish, as emphasized by kid-friendly parks and interactive community events.
Income PotentialConsistently high household income rates underscore Airdrie’s economic resilience and the prosperity of its residents.
Access to CalgaryThe proximity to Calgary places urban advantages within easy grasp while maintaining the tranquility of suburban life.
Community SpacesThe emphasis on shared spaces like sports complexes and libraries cultivates a bonded community dynamic.
Local AmenitiesAn array of local services, including gourmet dining, shopping venues, and healthcare facilities, encase the small-town charm with a layer of convenience.

If you’ve set your sights on Alberta for your next home, Airdrie represents refined suburban living. As you contemplate where to lay your roots in Alberta’s diverse landscape, picture yourself in one of Airdrie’s friendly neighborhoods, where children play safely outdoors, and community values stand at the forefront—a locale that melds the idyllic pace of a small town with the economic vigor typical of a larger city.

9. Okotoks – Population 37,000

A welcome sign at the entrance of Okotoks, one of the best places to live in Alberta, indicating the town's incorporation in 1904.

As you ponder the best places to settle in Alberta, the charming town of Okotoks may just capture your imagination. Brimming with the essence of coveted Alberta lifestyle choices, its allure lies in its balanced offering of serene living within striking distance of Calgary’s vibrant metropolis. Okotoks is the quintessential example of an Alberta locality that provides a seamless blend of suburban tranquility and city convenience.

If you’ve been searching for an affordable haven that doesn’t compromise on beauty or community spirit, Okotoks stands out. Surrounded by protected natural areas, this town is not just a scenic gem; it’s also a warm and closely-knit community that provides a peaceful retreat for those who seek it. Here, the suburban dream is enhanced by the advantages of proximity to Calgary, making it perfect for those who yearn for a quieter life without forsaking urban opportunities.

Okotoks is where the prairies meet the foothills, offering picturesque vistas and a lifestyle attuned to both relaxation and recreation.

  • Affordable Housing: Explore a range of cost-effective living options tailored to fit a variety of needs and preferences.
  • Proximity to Calgary: Enjoy the perks of city life with a mere 15-minute journey separating you from a bouquet of urban experiences.
  • Bountiful Nature: Revel in the surrounding beauty, with numerous protected areas offering an escape into the wilderness.
  • Community Vibe: Engage with a community that embodies a tight-knit feel, ideal for building lasting relationships and raising families.
  • Small-Town Charm: Experience the quiet streets, unique local businesses, and a slower pace of life that fosters relaxation and contentment.

Okotoks has carved a niche as a desirable location, admired for its landscape, melding effortlessly with homes and community spaces that epitomize the Alberta locality spirit. When considering your relocation or next home purchase, give thought to this small town, where nature’s backdrop and modern living harmonize to create an idyllic setting for your Alberta adventure.

10. Medicine Hat – Population 68,000

Modern public building with a glass facade and a clock tower, adorned with flower planters and flying flags under a blue sky with clouds, ranked among the best places to live in Alberta.

Medicine Hat often glows warmly on the radar. It’s a haven in southern Alberta, not only offering a sense of security but also remarkably affordable places to live in Alberta. Widely recognized as “Gas City” for its extensive natural gas fields, Medicine Hat promises a stable economy thriving largely on the resources beneath its soil.

One can’t mention Medicine Hat without spotlighting the Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park that serves as the city’s green treasure. This cross-border park invites residents and visitors to immerse themselves in natural escapades, adding a unique dimension to the city’s captivating surroundings. It illustrates perfectly why Medicine Hat is included among the top Alberta cities to live in.

For those mulling over a move to a locale harmonizing urban benefits with charm aplenty, here’s a comprehensive snapshot of what Medicine Hat has to offer:

Economic FoundationNatural BeautyCommunity FeaturesHousing Affordability
Rife with natural gas resources driving local industryScenic areas including the South Saskatchewan River and Echo Dale Regional ParkFriendly community atmosphere with vibrant local arts and culture sceneComparatively low housing costs contributing to its status for affordability

With Medicine Hat’s combination of economic stability, recreational offerings, and affordability, it’s no wonder that it ranks highly among Alberta’s sought-after residential spots. You’ll find a community keen to welcome newcomers, eager to showcase its harmonious balance between industry and ecology, modernity and tradition – a place where life thrives amid prairie vistas and technological progression.

  • Abundant employment opportunities linked to its energy sector
  • An array of parks and recreational spaces enrich its familial appeal
  • A dynamic cultural fabric, highlighted by venues like the Esplanade Arts & Heritage Centre

Whether you’re exploring options for your family, career advancements, or simply seeking a new chapter in a community teeming with potential, Medicine Hat stands out as a shining example of Alberta’s welcoming nature and prosperity.


As you’ve journeyed through this guide, exploring the vibrant spectrum of Alberta’s towns and cities, you’ve encountered places that encapsulate the natural beauty and economic opportunity that make Alberta shine. The destinations discussed not only meet essential criteria for a high quality of life but also exemplify the distinct charm that has shaped Alberta’s community ranking. Whether searching for expansive career potentials, stellar education, or enriching outdoor activities, Alberta offers locales that resonate with your aspirations and lifestyle choices, proving itself time and again as a stronghold of prosperity and community spirit.

Finding Your Place in Alberta’s Landscape

Discovering your niche in the Alberta landscape means aligning your personal desires with the attributes that each city or town uniquely presents. Recognizing that your priorities may range from an invigorating city buzz to the tranquil sights and sounds of the countryside, Alberta provides a backdrop where every chapter of life can be met with satisfaction. The Alberta Living Guide offers a canvas for you to paint your future amidst diverse backdrops, from the cultural festivities of Edmonton to the picturesque, nature-fueled grandeur of Canmore.

Why These Destinations Ranked as the Top Choices for Relocation

The featured places earned their rankings as Alberta’s best places to live through a harmonious combination of community qualities that appeal to a variety of lifestyles. These cities and towns boast balanced growth, economic vigor, low crime rates, and an effervescence of community life that beckons newcomers. As you consider relocating within the rolling hillsides and bustling streets of Alberta, these highlighted destinations stand out with their capability to enrich your life and offer a welcoming hand as you embark on your new journey in the Prairie Province.


What are the 10 best places to live in Alberta?

The top 10 places to live in Alberta, based on lifestyle choices, employment opportunities, and quality of life, are Calgary, Edmonton, Lethbridge, Red Deer, Canmore, Camrose, Grande Prairie, Airdrie, Okotoks, and Medicine Hat.

What makes Calgary one of the best cities to live in Alberta?

Calgary is known for its multicultural environment, strong economy, a wide array of recreational activities, and the absence of a sales tax, providing residents with a high average disposable income and an energetic cultural scene.

What is the best part of Alberta to live in?

The best part of Alberta to live in depends on individual preferences, but many consider Calgary to be a top choice due to its blend of economic opportunities, cultural diversity, access to outdoor activities, and high-quality education and healthcare facilities. Its proximity to the Rocky Mountains and vibrant city life offer a unique balance of urban convenience and natural beauty.

Why is Edmonton considered to have a high quality of life?

Edmonton offers numerous employment opportunities in oil, gas, agriculture, and technology, a variety of cultural festivals, diverse recreational activities, and higher average household incomes.

Where is the best place for families to live in Alberta?

Lethbridge is known for its affordability, sunny climate, and abundance of parks and recreational activities, making it an attractive city for families and individuals alike.

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