No matter what time of year you are visiting, there is something wonderful for you to do in Calgary.. Calgary is known as the eastern gateway to the Rocky Mountains, but honestly you will not want to go through any gateway, because the city itself will keep you more than entertained for days if not weeks. While you’re in Calgary check out the local attractions including:
Created and run by the Southern Family, Spruce Meadows’ mandate is to be an environment where people can enjoy “good friendship, good commerce, and good sport.” It fulfills that mandate today by offering the best of show-jumping competition year-round. Besides the world-class show jumping, your kids will enjoy the barrel racing, musical rides, king’s troop, face painting, prairie dog shows, wagon rides, pony rides, exhibits and more. Even if your kids do not ride, they are invited to touch and pet the horses. Bring your dog and your appetites, as the food is remarkably good. There is even a fantastic playground for your smallest children to enjoy.
If you are ready for an elegant evening out, then choose the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, a cornerstone of Calgary’s music community since 1955. It offers an extensive repertoire with a broad range of musical styles that appeal to a wide and diverse audience. CPO offers an average of 65 concerts every season, and they are designed to appeal to all musical tastes: classics, serenade, Destination, Rush Hour, pops, specials, Festival Italiano, Bach@Knox and Symphony Sundays for kids. The orchestra reaches more than 20,000 people yearly by providing workshops, internships, educational performances and more for students and seniors.
If you would like to learn something about Calgary’s past, you can step right back into it at Canada’s largest living history museum, the Heritage Park Historical Village. Situated on 127 acres of parkland surrounded on three sides by the Glenmore Reservoir, it includes more than 180 exhibits and service structures, 50 percent of them relocated and restored originals. You will enjoy the in-character narratives presented by costumed interpreters and service personnel. Take the train around the park check out the vintage automobiles in Gasoline Alley, let your kids go crazy on the vintage midway rides, hop aboard the steam boat and make sure you stop by the bakery. The “downtown” section gives you the sense of a real prairie town and it even has real shops, so do not let the costumed “townspeople” make you feel that your money is not good here!
For a view of a different historical era, check out the Military Museums. Outside the building are the requisite tanks, and inside are fantastic exhibits that put you right in the middle of any number of wars. You can walk through a World War I trench and get a sense of the fear and claustrophobia. You can stand in a World War II ship’s wheelhouse. You can watch a bomber squadron hone in for its run. You can even peer through a submarine’s periscope. Check out the interactive mural and plan on spending the day: there are eight separate museums and galleries.
You may be ready for some outdoors activity after all those museums, so head over to Fish Creek Provincial Park, one of the largest urban wildernesses in the world. The park contains 54 miles of trails for hiking, cycling and jogging. As you can imagine, there are a lot of things to do in that kind of space. Go swimming at the Sikome Aquatic Facility, spend a day bicycling with your family or bring a picnic and stretch out in the sun. Check out the museum, eat at the restaurant or café and explore the outdoor art exhibit. And be sure to bring a camera, because the views are amazing including moose, eagle, deer and wolf sightings!
No matter what your children’s ages are, they will all love a visit to the Calgary Zoo, called home by more than 1,000 creatures from all over the world. It is Canada’s most-visited zoo. There are live presentations of various birds and animals, so be sure to check the day’s schedule when you arrive. Wander through the penguin room, the dinosaur park and make sure to try the special hot chocolate at the restaurant. Tired of animals? There is also a playground for the kids, a garden for the adults, a “behind the scenes” tour and the option of becoming Zookeeper For A Day.
With so much to see and do, you may find yourself extending your vacation in Calgary, Canada with Choice Hotels. Tour this beautiful gateway to the Rocky Mountains and return to your hotel room with a greater appreciation for nature.
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