Calgary, well known as “Cowtown,” is a cosmopolitan city in Alberta. Its rapid growth is fueled by Canada’s oil industry. Not only for business, but there are many other reasons to go to Calgary, the most prominent being to hit the ski slopes, hiking trails, Banff, Jasper National park, Lake Louis, and many more exciting places. Located in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies, the city became a gateway hub to the winter world for many sports enthusiasts.
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Best Time To Visit
Calgary’s weather is moderately dry compared to the neighboring British Columbia and the other western counterparts. Therefore, if you don’t mind crowds and enjoy summer activities, the best time to visit Calgary is from June to the end of September. Despite the bone-chilling cold, for many winter enthusiasts, the best time to visit Calgary is between November and February. Visitors gather in the city to observe the spectacular northern Lights that are brilliantly noticeable from Calgary.
How To Get There
Calgary is located 256 miles (404 km) southeast of Jasper National Park, about 600 miles (970 km) east of Vancouver, and only 185 miles (298 km) from Edmonton. So one of the best things you can do is get there by driving from Vancouver, Jasper, or Banff through the heart of the Canadian Rockies. In addition, Calgary has an International airport that can be accessed by major domestic and international flights.
Getting Around in Calgary
Calgary is loaded with attractions unlike any other city. In addition, there is Bus, CTrain (LRT), and taxis available.
Guided Tour – There are a few tour companies that offer guided tours, check out Brewster Sightseeing for day trips from Calgary.
Bus – Calgary Bus systems go almost everywhere in the city, including services to and from the Airport. It offers a variety of fare options, including day passes and monthly passes.
CTrain – There are Red lines and Blue lines. CTrain can connect you to different parts of the city. Traveling downtown along 7 Avenue is free – hop on or off along 7 Ave as long as you get off before the train leaves downtown.
Rent a car – I highly recommend researching before booking your rental car. You are better off sticking with multinational companies, especially if you are a foreign visitor. However, there are local companies that may quote you low prices. Still, you may end up purchasing mandatory car insurance during car pickup as they are not in a position to honor international insurance. As a result, your insurance can go as high as C$ 25+.
Travel Insurance – Bad things can happen anytime, especially when you are doing activities you are not used to. Because I have practical experience in this. So travel insurance is recommended that will protect you from surprises for independent travelers like you and your families. So don’t think about all the things that might go wrong on your trip, but these things can and do happen.
Best Thing To Do
Visit The Calgary Tower
Once called the Husky Tower, the 2nd tallest tower in Canada is a must-see for the first-time traveler to the city. The impressive bird’s eye view of the city and the spectacular views of the Rockies from the top of the 191-meter-tall tower is definitely rewarding.
Prince’s Island Park
The small island of 20 hectares on the Bow River is a great place to visit in Calgary. Suppose you are driving on Memorial Dr. NWf. In that case, it’s easy to find a parking lot across the walking bridge over the river that will lead you to the beautiful park. There are always some activities going on. You will find jogging trails, a picnic area, a cafe, theater performances, and free festivals to keep you busy.
Explore the Kensington Neighborhood
Kensington area is a great place to visit, particularly at night, as this northwest part of the city becomes bustling with tourists and locals alike. There are great restaurants and pubs, such as Original Joe’s Restaurant & Bar, Higher Ground Cafe, Side Street Pub & Grill, and many more. It’s good to know that late July is famous for its Sun and Salsa festival.
The Family of Man Sculptures (Armengol Statues)
At the corner of 1st St SE and 5th. Ave SE, this little park displays charming tall aluminum sculptures. If you take a walking tour in Calgary, you will notice this place on your route. The collection of ten sculptures was initially designed by Spanish artist Mario Armengol.
The Big Rock Brewery
A tour through Big Rock Brewery is a great way to bring excitement to your city tour. Whether you are a beer drinker or not, experiencing the Canadian award-winning craft beer is a must-do, in my opinion. Big Rock offers brewery tours for $25.00, which includes testing and a free souvenir.
Iconic Peach Bridge
Suppose you are interested in taking a few cool-looking pictures. In that case, you need to walk over this pedestrian bridge over Bow River called Peace Bridge. It has a unique design and is one of the iconic structures of Calgary.
Where to stay in Calgary, Canada
Holiday Inn Express Calgary is about a half mile from the Kensington shopping area and a 10-minute drive from Jack Singer Concert Hall in the EPCOR Centre for Performing Arts. The Calgary Holiday Inn Express guest rooms include a microwave, refrigerator, and coffee maker.
The on-site fitness center is provided for guest recreation.
The Westin Calgary features a rooftop heated pool and sauna; this hotel is located in downtown Calgary and offers in-room spa services. The Calgary Tower is 0.6 miles away. Free WiFi is available. Heritage Park Historical Village is 5.3 mi away. Guests at The Westin Calgary are 1.9 mi from the Calgary Zoo.
My Opinion and Last Word
Have you been to Calgary, Canada? Any cool tips to share?
I loved being in Calgary, Canada, and want to go back again. I hope my story has motivated you to visit Canada.
Please leave a comment below! I’d love to hear from you to improve my knowledge.
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