This complete information to the very best issues to do in Calgary, Alberta will present you the highest sights, festivals, and outside actions to take pleasure in all through your time in Stampede City.
Full of pioneering historical past and flanked by the Canadian Rockies, the attractive metropolis of Calgary is the place in your subsequent journey. In Alberta, Calgary is extra than simply the placement of an iconic stampede, it has an distinctive foodie scene, enjoyable vacationer sights, and outside adventures galore. Cut by the Bow River, it’s a metropolis of parks and recreation. Calgary can also be an ideal launch level for a visit to Banff.
Things to do in Calgary
When visiting Calgary, one of the best ways to see it’s to hire a automobile. We normally decide up our automobile rental on the Calgary International Airport and use it to discover the encircling areas corresponding to Canmore, Banff, and Drumheller. But earlier than you begin doing day journeys from Calgary, let’s try the very best issues to do in Calgary for a few days in downtown Calgary.
1. Go Up the Calgary Tower
As one of the crucial recognizable buildings within the metropolis’s skyline, the Calgary Tower helps newcomers and vacationers preserve their bearings as they roam the streets. Upon completion in 1968, the Calgary Tower was the tallest constructing within the metropolis. Although it was dethroned in 1984, the tower nonetheless presents guests among the finest views in Calgary.
From 626ft (191m) above the bottom, you possibly can see properly into the encircling mountains. One of the very best issues to do in Calgary at night time is to move to the second remark deck within the Tower. Sip on a cocktail at Sky 360 and benefit from the metropolis lights up from above.
2. Canada Olympic Park (WINSPORT)
Home to the 1988 Winter Olympics, the park is likely one of the prime Calgary sights and continues to be used as a coaching floor for skilled athletes. Now often known as WinSport, Canada Olympic Park is the place for winter sports activities lovers to go if you wish to do some snowboarding near the town centre, or to take pleasure in one in every of its many outside adventures in the summertime.
Beyond snowboarding and snowboarding, guests can take pleasure in tubing down the hills and even strive bobsledding on the unique Olympic bobsleigh monitor. Is there a greater strategy to head down the mountain at 100km per hour? WinSport additionally presents rides on one of many quickest zip-lines in North America. There are mountain bike trails or you possibly can put your mountaineering boots to work. Read extra about it at Canada Olympic Park – Fun in Calgary Alberta
3. Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame
Conveniently positioned within the Olympic Park, the museum is hallowed floor for the sports activities of hockey, baseball, soccer, and the Olympics. Along with studying in regards to the a whole lot of Canadians which were inducted, you can even see the torch that was used to start the 1988 Winter Olympics. Later take a look at your expertise by shadowboxing in opposition to iconic boxer Lennox Lewis.
4. Bow River
With intensive pathways for walkers, bikers, and the occasional rollerblader, following the Bow River is an effective way to discover Calgary. The river cuts by means of the town and the 6.1 km pathway offers welcoming entry to numerous spots. Examples embody Prince’s Island Park and the beloved Peace Bridge.
The Peace Bridge connects Memorial Drive with Eau Claire Park. We counsel renting a bicycle to discover the waterfront. Our lodge The Hotel Arts Kensington had complimentary bikes to make use of to discover the town.
Take a Walking Tour
One of the very best methods to discover a brand new metropolis is to affix a strolling tour. This 2-hour strolling tour enables you to reserve now and pay later. (straightforward cancellation inside 24 hours of tour in case your plans change. It takes you thru downtown Calgary to discover its elevated walkways and historical past. Places to see in Calgary embody the Municipal Plaza, Calgary’s East Village and Old City Hall. You’ll additionally stroll essentially the most intensive pathway system in North America, and Chinatown.
5. Stephen Avenue
Arguably essentially the most stunning avenue in Calgary, finishing the Stephen Avenue Walk is a must-do. Placed within the metropolis heart, the avenue is straightforward to get to and presents historic buildings, stylish retailers, and comfy eating places. The magnificence goes up a notch in the summertime when the road turns into a hub of exercise. Once you might have accomplished the stroll, additionally, you will be near lots of the prime sights on this record. From the Calgary Tower to Glenbow Museum.
6. Studio Bell & the National Music Centre
Home to the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, the Studio Bell & National Music Centre options an architectural design that’s as memorable because the reveals themselves. Inside, you’ll uncover an abundance of memorabilia and devices, that includes iconic Canadian musicians corresponding to Neil Young, Bryan Adams and Oscar Peterson.
By becoming a member of the backstage tour, you possibly can discover centuries of historic devices and study native music icons. The spotlight of the tour, nonetheless, is the journey by means of the long-lasting Rolling Stones recording studio and an opportunity to play some devices alongside the journey.
7. Prince’s Island Park
On an island alongside the Bow River, Prince’s Island Park comes with 50-acres of pure area to discover. On a sunny day in Calgary, seize a picnic and loosen up beneath the shady bushes. Or you possibly can eat on the River Cafe, a nice eating restaurant situated inside the park
Connected to downtown Calgary by way of three pedestrian bridges, you’ll uncover ample strolling and biking tracks to stretch out your legs. If you didn’t carry a picnic, there’s a fantastic restaurant to dine at, and you might also come across dwell music as you stroll the paths. Prince’s Island Park is close to the Eau Claire Market. Combine your park day by exploring the market’s choice of one-of-a-kind finds and specialty treats.
8. Calgary Folk Music Festival
Over 4 days, Prince’s Island goes to a different stage with improbable solo acts and bands lighting up the area. Boogie beneath the balmy Calgary solar and take heed to your favourite tunes or uncover new musicians to fall in love with. Alongside the dwell performances, you can see a number of workshops, arts and crafts, together with scrumptious meals distributors. When the music stops, that doesn’t imply the enjoyable ends. You are inside strolling distance of the downtown core, with loads of choices to maintain the night time rolling.
9. Expo Latino
One of the very best festivals in Calgary is Expo Latino. Held yearly in August, Expo Latino is the biggest Latin pageant in Canada. With ample dwell music, room to bounce, and superb Latin delicacies, you possibly can’t miss Expo Latino.
10. Fort Calgary
At the union of the Bow and Elbow Rivers, Fort Calgary was the primary outpost of the North West Mounted Police. To at the present time, you possibly can nonetheless see the unique foundations of the fort whereas the Fort Calgary Museum tells the story of the town from its basis to fashionable occasions. You’ll be taught of the Métis’ historical past and affect in Calgary and the way the Elbow River and Bow Rivers are important to Indigenous tradition and heritage.
11. Heritage Park Historical Village
If Fort Calgary offers a glimpse into Western Canada’s historical past on the Heritage Park Historical Village offers the complete image. The park is dwelling to a collection of historic buildings from the pioneer period with ample costumed interpreters that can assist you journey again in time. Fun Fact: This is Canada’s largest dwelling historical past museum!
The buildings cowl 4 key durations in Calgary’s historical past. You’ll uncover an 1860s fur-trading fort, a city sq. from the early twentieth century together with the favored outdated steam engine. Jump on for a journey across the village. Other actions embody a paddlewheel tour on the scenic Glenmore Reservoir and a go to to Gasoline Alley Museum. A spot stuffed with classic autos and interactive reveals.
12. The Military Museums
Displaying the essential efforts of Canada’s military throughout the First and Second World Wars, the Military Museums provide superb perception into this era of human historical past.
The museums go into nice element, protecting tales of the courageous women and men who put their lives on the road. Here you possibly can be taught what it was wish to be within the trenches on the Western Front, or flying a bomber throughout WWII. Your go to may even include the possibility to view numerous navy autos, together with tanks.
13. Glenbow Museum
If it’s a depressing day and also you’re questioning what to do in Calgary when it’s raining, then the reply is the Glenbow Museum. Within downtown Calgary, the museum focuses on artwork and tradition in Western Canada. With over one million artifacts, artwork items, and pictures on show, put together to take a deep dive into modern life and tradition on this nook of the world.
The Museum additionally presents a tremendous look into the values, traditions, and heritage of indigenous peoples who’ve lived alongside the Northwestern Plains for 1000’s of years.
14. Calaway Park
Wondering what enjoyable issues to do in Calgary as a household? Well, you possibly can’t go improper with a day at Calaway Park. As the largest outside amusement park in Western Canada, Calaway Park guarantees to be a enjoyable day for everybody.
The park comes with over 30 rides, of which many will get the guts pumping. For some extra relaxed enjoyable, you possibly can play nearly two dozen carnival-style video games. Better but, take pleasure in a present at Calaway Park’s very personal 3D theater.
15. Fish Creek Park
The second-largest city park in Canada, Fish Creek Park, comes with pleasant strolling trails by means of forests and alongside the famend creek. The designated pure space is dwelling to some 200 species and is a superb place to take pleasure in bird-watching.
16. Watch the Calgary Flames
Hockey is Canada’s hottest sport and by an enormous margin. One of the very best methods to get into the native spirit is to go to the Saddledome and watch the Calgary Flames tear up the ice
The aptly named Saddledome certainly seems like a saddle from the surface. From October to April, the sector sells out a number of occasions per week. If you’re on a finances, tickets to see the Flames could be low-cost, particularly in comparison with a Maple Leaf’s sport in Toronto. Tickets to video games in opposition to the Edmonton Oilers could be aggressive. But watching the 2 bitter rivals face-off is likely one of the finest issues to do in Calgary.
17. Theatre Calgary
If you’re searching for one other exercise at night time in Calgary, why not go to the Theater? Theatre Calgary is an expert theatre firm and performing arts theatre that hosts Broadway productions.
18. Calgary Zoo
Zoos aren’t usually listed on our to do record, however they do have a spot in conservation and schooling. Plus, the Calgary Zoo is famend for its conservation efforts serving to uncommon and endangered species. The Calgary Zoo additionally has a botanical backyard and butterfly conservatory.
19. Calgary Stampede
Over ten days in July the world-famous Calgary Stampede takes place at Stampede Park. Locals and as much as one million vacationers descend on the occasion.
Known because the ‘biggest outside present on earth, friends are enthralled by rodeo occasions and exhibitions to stage reveals and pancakes breakfasts. The historical past of the Calgary Stampede could be traced again to the late nineteenth century and its status grows by the 12 months. There has been numerous controversy over the occasion lately, however one can not deny that this is likely one of the prime issues to do in Calgary.
Day Trips from Calgary
Calgary is conveniently situated on the Trans Canada Highway linking, Calgary, Canmore, Banff and Lake Louise. No go to to Alberta could be full with out seeing these stunning locations.
20. Banff National Park
One of the very best day journeys from Calgary is Banff National Park, dwelling to towering mountains and the storybook Lake Louise. You can attain the park in 90 minutes however the surroundings is more likely to have you ever stopping at common intervals.
After arriving within the park, proceed on to the lake. Spectacular mountain vistas encompass you at each flip, carved over millennia by the gradual motion of glaciers. The result’s the gorgeous turquoise waters of Lake Louise. Head out on the lake or stroll the lakeshore path. With mountains hovering over 10,000 ft in direction of the heavens, Banff National Park is the definition of unforgettable. In the winter there may be world class snowboarding and snowboarding and in the summertime you possibly can go mountain biking, or mountaineering. Read extra: The Best Things to do in Banff, Alberta
Canmore is situated between Calgary and Banff and is a superb cease for a day. In reality, we’ve spent a number of days in Canmore from exploring its many mountaineering trails in the summertime to snowshoeing and cross nation snowboarding within the winter. One of the very best issues to do is to take a helicopter tour over the Canadian Rockies to see the spectacular surroundings of Banff and Lake Louise. Read extra: The Best Things to do in Canmore, Alberta
One of our favourite day journeys from Banff is the unbelievable city of Drumheller. Take a street journey to see the hoodoos, Royal Tyrrell Dinousaur museum and canyons of the world. The Atlas Coal Mine is a superb tour for the entire household and also you’ll even get to see the world’s largest dinosaur. Read extra: 17 Awesome Things to do in Drumheller, Alberta
23. Take The Rocky Mountaineer to Vancouver
One of the world’s finest practice journeys leaves from Calgary on its strategy to Vancouver. If you might have a number of days to fill in your Calgary itinerary, contemplate a once-in-a-lifetime journey on the Rocky Mountaineer.
The luxurious practice travels alongside the historic Canada Pacific Line, venturing deep into the snow-capped peaks of the Rocky Mountains. Along the best way, you’ll have the possibility to cease at Canmore, Banff National Park, or Jasper for quite a lot of spectacular day journeys.
How to get to Calgary
The fundamental level of entry to Alberta’s largest metropolis is from Calgary Airport. You can have quite a lot of transport choices to select from.
There is an specific bus to downtown that leaves each half hour between 5 am and midnight and prices $6.35 USD. The journey takes half-hour. A shuttle leaves from Bus Bay 8 each half hour from 8 am to midnight. The shuttle prices $12 USD and connects to most metropolis inns. A taxi journey from the airport to downtown prices roughly $35 USD.
Best time to go to Calgary
With a steadiness of city and mountain adventures to embark on, there may be by no means a foul time to go to Calgary. The winter months provide nice native snowboarding and decrease room charges. In the autumn, you’ll take pleasure in reasonable temperatures and exquisite surroundings because the leaves flip to auburn.
However, you possibly can’t go previous summer time as the very best time to go to Calgary. With all of the festivals and dwell occasions plus the Calgary Stampede, it’s a magical time of 12 months. Book as far upfront as attainable to save cash on lodging.
Where to remain in Calgary
Even as the town continues to develop, the very best place to base your self is inside Calgary’s downtown. You will probably be near the overwhelming majority of sights from the Bow River to Stephen Avenue.
Hotel Arts Kensington – Calgary
We have stayed at this boutique lodge in Calgary a number of occasions and it’s excellent. The Hotel Artis is a luxurious boutique lodge that goes the additional mile. Located within the coronary heart of Kensington Village, it has a cool and funky vibe that’s nice for nightlife. They provide free bike loans on the lodge and it’s situated alongside the pedestrian path working alongside the river. Check out costs on TripAdvisor
More Calgary Hotels
- Luxury – Fairmont Palliser – You can’t go improper with this historic lodge. Operating for greater than 100 yeras, this luxurious lodge within the central enterprise district is close to a lot of Calgary’s prime sights. It’s near the CORE procuring Centre, cultural sights and leisure.
- Budget – Best Western Plus Downtown presents friends spectacular views of the Rocky Mountains. Offering studios together with one and two-bedroom suites take pleasure in free breakfast and WiFi whereas being mere steps from the downtown enjoyable.
- Mid-Range – In the guts of Calgary, you can see a number of mid-range inns, together with International Hotel & Spa. The lodge presents beneficiant room sizes, complimentary continental breakfast, a gymnasium, and a heated pool.
So, there you might have it. These are the very best issues to do in Calgary for the entire household. Whether you’re utilizing the town as a leaping off level to discover the Rocky Mountains or for a metropolis break, Calgary is a superb selection as probably the greatest cities in Canada to go to it doesn’t matter what the season.