Eating outside during the summer was one of my favourite ways to break up a work day, when I worked downtown. I’d either pack my lunch, order take-out or hit up one of the many street food vendors. I’d grab my meal and race over to one of the many spots in Downtown Yellowknife where a person can enjoy the sun and atmosphere while conversing with a friend or simply reenergizing by one’s self.
Over the past 6 years, outdoor space downtown has really become beautiful and plentiful, but on a nice sunny day in the summer can also be quite busy.
If you are planning on sitting outside for lunch somewhere, know where you want to go and plan to be there early to get the best seat on the lawn.
Below is a list of some of the prime spaces I like to go to. If you know of a space, that isn’t a secret and is public, leave me a comment and I’ll be sure to add it to the list.
Somba K’e Civic Plaza
This park, which was once the City Hall parking lot and Gerry Murphy arena, has really become a centrepiece in the downtown core. It is a large lawn with several picnic tables, gardens and an amphitheatre that overlooks Frame Lake. The Civic Plaza is located on 49th Avenue, just one block down from Franklin Avenue.
Northern Frontier Visitor Centre
This space is relatively new but has become one of the best little spots to enjoy lunch. Nestled just below the pathway to the visitor centre, a few picnic tables have been set up, with umbrellas, overlooking part of Frame Lake.
Between RCMP and JTFN
An often forgotten and hidden spot for lunch is nestled in between the RCMP and JTFN buildings, right beside an access pathway to the Frame Lake trail. On some rocks above a nicely kept lawn is a few picnic tables with a little shade from the trees. If the tables are taken already, the grass is also cool and comfy to sit on.
Legislative Assembly Tipi
A place I had never considered as a lunch spot came to mind as I was planning this post. Upon checking out this space again and finding it cleaned up and groomed I would definitely consider it for lunch. It is removed from the downtown hustle but yet close by. If you are looking for something different, I’d try this space.
Greenstone Building Park
When the Greenstone building was built, replacing the old Canadian Tire and Hudson Bay Company building, it really improved the look of the downtown core. Architecturally it is a beautiful building and the landscaping is also very well-kept. Relatively hidden from Franklin Avenue is a large park on the backside of the building with lush green grass, benches and picnic tables. It is a wonderful place to eat lunch. When the sun is out and beating on the giant wall of the building that is mostly solar panels, the park becomes one of the warmest spots in town.
Do you have a favourite outdoor public space that is great for hanging out at over lunch or coffee break? Let us know.