Calgary, Gateway to Kananaskis, Canmore & Banff
Calgary is the largest city in Alberta and perhaps the fastest growing city in Canada. The Calgary Airport is the 4th busiest in Canada, handling an ever-increasing volume of international travellers, many of whom are vacationing in the Canadian Rockies. From Calgary, you are only 30 minutes away from the world famous McKay Ice Cream in Cochrane, an hour away from Kananaskis Village, and just 90 minutes from Banff.
Calgary is a quick and easy point of entry to the mountains by car, shuttle, bus, RV, or train, but why not plan to spend a day in town before or after your holiday? Must-See’s include The Prehistoric Park at The Calgary Zoo, The Calgary Stampede and Heritage Park — Canada’s largest living historical village.
Want a bird’s eye view? Take a hot air balloon ride over the city or check out the Calgary Tower. Imagine standing 525 feet above the ground in the heart of the city and being able to look straight down through a glass floor to the street below. What a thrill!
Side Trips from Calgary
If you’re with your children and have a few extra days in the region, you’ll want to explore the Royal Tyrrell Museumin Drumheller. Do you love the theatre? Then the Rosebud Theatre‘s outdoor presentation of The Passion might be the perfect outing for you.
Or head south to the Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump near old historic Fort Macleod. Along the way, if you’re a golfer who likes good value, book a tee time at the premium 27 hole Highwood Golf Course in High River. Are you on a budget? Try the Nanton Golf Course.
Want to see what Banff looked like 50 years ago? Waterton Lakes National Park features a quaint town site with spectacular scenery. It’s a 2-3 hour drive south — part of the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park created in 1932 by the US and Canadian federal governments. Stop at the marina and take a cruise across the international border. Or head over to the Information Centre and hike up the (rather difficult) Bear’s Hump Trail. Photo Opps abound — make sure you get an image of the Prince of Wales Hotel — one of the most photographed buildings in the Rockies. And stop in forAfternoon Tea while you are there.