We first visited Calgary during our first trip to North America several years ago. We were blown away by Calgary and it’s surrounding area. Calgary is a wonderful place to visit and there are many things to see and places to go that you could easily spend a week or two exploring around the 5th largest city in Canada. But if you are short on time we have narrowed it down to what we think are the must dos. Please enjoy Three Days in Calgary, Canada.
Calgary International Airport is located outside the city and taxis into town from the airport cost around $45. Travelers who don’t want to spend that much may be able to arrange a private shuttle service with their hotel or another independent operator for about $15. A cheaper but more time consuming option is to take the city shuttle for about $3. Of course, there are car rentals available at the airport as well. Guests should note that there is no train service to Calgary International, but there is a train service within the city itself.
Those arriving in town early should stop for brunch at the OEB Breakfast Co. Then, travelers should head over to the Glenbow Museum, which has the largest art collection in Canada and a variety of history exhibits. If art is not one’s forte, The Military Museum is another good choice. It focuses on the Canadian armed forces and has exhibits that show scenes from both of the world wars.
After one has been to one or both of the museums, it is a good idea to stop at Gaga Pizza for a quick bite to eat. Aside from the tasty individual portion pizza served here, they also have delicious soups and sandwiches. Creative toppings and great customer service keep people coming back to this local favorite.
Post meal, it is time to get moving towards the neighborhood shops. For all one’s Western wear needs, the Alberta Boot Company is the perfect stop. They have a wide selection of footwear as well as cowboy hats and belt buckets. For the right price, travelers can even have their shoes custom made.
Those that love to cook and eat locally should definitely pay a visit to the Calgary Farmer’s Market. Visitors here will be able to taste plenty of free samples while wandering through the stores. Gourmands should not miss out on stopping by the Silk Road Spice Merchant. The teas and spices found here make wonderful gifts for friends and family members, although no one will fault travelers for picking up something for themselves as well.
If the free samples wear off and hunger pains begin to hit, it may be time to seek out sustenance. For supper, Calgary visitors should try the 7 Seas Seafood & Grill Restaurant. Although the eatery’s focus is predominately on seafood, selections from the Filipino portion of the menu are also quite tasty. Friendly, professional service along with delicious food will help make this meal one to remember.
Once done with lunch, city visitors should try to catch a concert by excellent Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra.
On Saturday morning travelers should set off in the early morning hours on Hammerhead Scenic Tours trip to the beautiful Banff and Lake Louise areas. Small groups combined with the guide’s extensive knowledge of the region make for a pleasant day out. Sturdy walking shoes and cameras are recommended for those taking the tour.
When the group stops in Banff for lunch, travelers should head over to the Balkan Restaurant. This eatery dishes up sizable portions of tasty, authentic Greek fare at reasonable prices. Another wonderful place to grab a bite to eat is The Bison Restaurant, which has a menu featuring classic Canadian fare. This establishment specializes in locally sourced ingredients and is a true destination for those who consider themselves to be “foodies”.
Upon returning to Calgary, guests should check out the Stillwater spa in the downtown area. At this location, massages and pedicures are the order of the day. A number of other procedures are available to ease tired muscles and help travelers relax. The spa stays open to 9 pm on Saturdays.
For dinner, the La Brezza Ristorante makes a perfect stop. This restaurant serves up authentic Italian fare in a cozy setting. Both the napolitana and the carbonara are highly recommended at this location. After dinner, guests can check out the city’s nightlife. Those looking for a classy club atmosphere should drop by the Standard, while those seeking tasty cocktails should visit the Milk Tiger Lounge.
If all the activities of the previous day led one to oversleep the hotel’s complimentary breakfast, fear not. While The Blue Diner is a top spot for breakfast, they also have a plentiful selection of dinner items as well. Sandwiches, salads, and soups as well as more traditional breakfast offerings can be found here, making it a great spot for those who tend to wake up at later hours.
A stroll through Fish Creek Provincial Park on one of their lovely walking trails will refresh travelers for their journey home. The wildlife is plentiful and at this location it is easy for one to forget that they are actually in the heart of downtown Calgary.
Those that still have some time in the city might want to check out any shops or museums they missed seeing earlier before departing. Between the months of October and July, those on their way out of town should definitely try their luck at finding their way out of the Calgary Corn Maze & Fun Farm.
Do you have any other suggestions for three days in Calgary, Canada?