Posted 17 April 2024 in Travel wanderlust

Things to do in Calgary

There are just so many things to do in Calgary, from rubbernecking along the lively streets of Kensington to the adrenaline-pumping Calgary Stampede, and gearing up for adventure to several national parks near Calgary. This dynamic city in Alberta province perfectly blends urban with natural beauty. No matter if you travel alone or with a pack, you can find many exciting things to do in Calgary. There's something for everyone to discover in this vibrant metropolis. Hence, it attracts visitors from around the world seeking excitement and exploration. 

One of the best things to do in Calgary is exploring the nearby national parks such as Banff National Park. Surrounded by the majestic Rocky Mountains and sprawling prairies, you are bound to find breathtaking vistas at every turn. Calgary is also known for its vibrant arts and culture, thriving culinary scene, and adventurous spirit, promising an unforgettable experience that will leave you captivated by its charm and allure. There’s a plethora of things to do in Calgary for those seeking excitement and exploration. Book your flight now for an unforgettable journey.

Here's our guide to the top 10 things to do in Calgary:

1. Explore downtown Calgary 

Start your adventure by exploring downtown Calgary, where you'll find a mix of modern skyscrapers, historic buildings, and bustling streets. You can indulge in several things to do in Calgary such as taking a stroll along Stephen Avenue Walk, exploring the shops, cafes, and restaurants, and more.

2. Visit the Calgary Tower

One of the best things to do in Calgary is visiting the Calgary Tower for panoramic views of the city and the surrounding Rocky Mountains. Take the elevator to the observation deck and marvel at the breathtaking vistas stretching as far as the eye can see.

3. Discover Calgary's cultural scene

Dive into the rich cultural scene by visiting attractions in Calgary like the Glenbow Museum, which showcases art, history, and culture from around the world. Don't miss the Calgary Zoo, home to over 1,000 animals from across the globe, and the Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre, where you can learn about Canada's musical heritage.

4. Attend a Calgary Flames Game 

If you're a sports enthusiast, catch a Calgary Flames hockey game at the Scotiabank Saddledome. Experience the electrifying atmosphere as you cheer on the home team alongside passionate fans.

5. Explore Prince's Island Park 

For a rather calming thing to do in Calgary, you can unwind in the tranquillity of Prince's Island Park. Located in the heart of downtown Calgary, this urban oasis offers scenic walking trails, picnic spots, and beautiful gardens along the Bow River.

6. Hike in the Canadian Rockies 

There is nothing more Canadian experience than hiking up the rocky mountains of the most stunning landscapes on earth. Embarking on an adventure in Banff National Park or Kananaskis Country is probably the most popular thing to do in Calgary, where you'll discover pristine lakes, rugged mountains, and abundant wildlife.

7. Experience Calgary's Festivals 

Throughout the year, Calgary hosts a variety of festivals and events celebrating music, culture, food, and more. From the Calgary Stampede, one of the largest rodeos in the world, to the Calgary Folk Music Festival and the Calgary International Film Festival, there's always something exciting to do in Calgary.

8. Indulge in the local cuisine 

No visit to Calgary is complete without sampling some of the city's delicious cuisine. Head to the Kensington or Inglewood neighbourhoods to explore trendy cafes, artisanal bakeries, and international restaurants serving everything from Canadian classics to global fusion dishes.

9. Take a day trip to Drumheller

Why not leave Calgary behind and go on a day trip to Drumheller, known as the Dinosaur Capital of the World. Drumheller has many things to do from exploring the Royal Tyrrell Museum, where you can marvel at dinosaur fossils and learn about prehistoric life through interactive exhibits.

10. Camp under the stars

For the ultimate outdoor experience in Calgary, pitch a tent and spend a night camping under the stars in one of the nearby provincial parks or campgrounds. Whether you prefer a backcountry adventure or a family-friendly campground, there are plenty of options to choose from near Calgary.

Best time to visit Calgary

The best time to visit Calgary is during the summer months from June to August when the weather is mild, and outdoor activities abound. 

Another beautiful time to visit Calgary is in the fall months of September and October when the foliage is stunning and the city hosts various festivals.

How to reach Calgary?

  • By air: For international travellers, Calgary International Airport (YYC) is the main airport that serves as the entry point to the city. It is well-connected to major cities across Canada, and other international destinations. From the airport, you can take a taxi, shuttle, or public transit to reach the city centre.
  • By rail: Railway is really enjoyable in Canada, the train operates services to Calgary from various cities across Canada, including Vancouver, Toronto, and Winnipeg. The train station is located in downtown Calgary, making it convenient for travellers arriving by rail.
  • By road: Calgary is connected to other major cities in Alberta and neighbouring provinces by an extensive network of highways. If you're driving from nearby cities like Edmonton or Banff, you can reach Calgary via several national highways. 

Best way to get around Calgary

  • Calgary public transit: Calgary has an extensive public transit system operated by Calgary Transit, including buses and the CTrain (light rail). The CTrain provides efficient service throughout the city with routes connecting major neighbourhoods, downtown, and attractions. The bus network complements the CTrain service, offering coverage to areas not accessible by rail.
  • Walking: Many of Calgary's neighbourhoods, especially downtown and inner-city areas, are pedestrian-friendly with well-maintained sidewalks and pathways. Walking is a great way to explore the city's vibrant streets, parks, and attractions, especially in areas like Stephen Avenue Walk and Prince's Island Park.
  • Cycling: Calgary boasts a network of dedicated bike lanes and pathways, making cycling a popular and eco-friendly way to get around. Cycling is also one of the best things to do in Calgary. The city offers bike rental services, and there are numerous bike shops for purchasing or repairing bicycles. 
  • App-based cabs: Uber and Lyft operate in Calgary providing convenient and affordable transportation options for getting around the city, especially during off-peak hours or in areas not well-served by public transit.
  • Local taxi: Besides app-based cabs, local taxis are readily available throughout Calgary, particularly in downtown and high-traffic areas. Hail a cab from designated taxi stands.
  • Car rental: While Calgary has a well-developed public transit system, renting a car may be preferable for exploring attractions outside the city or for day trips to nearby destinations like Banff National Park. Several car rental companies operate in Calgary, offering a range of vehicles to suit your needs.


With its stunning natural beauty, diverse cultural attractions, and endless outdoor adventures, Calgary is the perfect destination for those seeking an unforgettable experience. So pack your bags, hit the road, and get ready to experience these amazing things to do in Calgary in the heart of Alberta, Canada.

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