Calgary is a big draw for tourists for its thriving arts and culture scene, beautiful landscape, and bumping food and drink scene. It’s also famous for its annual Calgary Stampede, a local rodeo which takes place annually in July. While the Calgary Stampede certainly helped put Calgary on the map, there’s much more to this vibrant Canadian city than barrel racing and bull riding.
Situated in the heart of Alberta in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies, Calgary boasts some seriously stunning scenery making it a paradise for nature lovers. No matter how many mountains and valleys you’ve explored, the Canadian Rockies are truly in a league of their own. Banff, one of Canada’s most sought after tourist destinations known for its turquoise coloured lakes and pristine snow-capped mountains, is just an hour and a half away from Calgary. Not up for Banff? Head to Grassi Lakes instead and hike the stunning forest trails that surround the blue waters. Or how about exploring the lunar landscape of Grotto Canyon or the fairytale scenes of Troll Falls? When it comes to ease of access to some of Canada’s most gorgeous natural areas, Calgary is hard to top.
Another nature lovers highlight of Calgary is its cycling trails and a variety of green spaces. In fact, Calgary boasts the longest urban pathway system in North America. Be sure to take a day to explore Calgary by bike and trail along the cities most interesting sites. Peddle your way through downtown hotspots like the Olympic Plaza made for the 1988 Olympic Games and then hit up the Arts Commons where you can explore six different performance spaces that speak to Calgary love of the arts. You can also cruise through charming neighbourhoods such as boutique-filled Inglewood.
This eccentric, character-loaded, uber-stylish hotel is all about hospitality and comfort. Whether you spend the day lounging with cocktails by the massive pool that screams South Beach or sleep in in any one of their fashionable and spacious rooms or suites, you’re in for a treat. Onsite you’ll also find not just one but two of Calgary’s best and most acclaimed restaurants. Head to The Yellow Door Bistro for a mean brunch with cocktails or grab a table at the Raw Bar and sample every last one of their pan-Asian dishes.
The Fairmont name is internationally recognised for its top-notch luxury and award-winning hospitality. Fairmont Palliser in the heart of Calgary is no exception. Since 1914, Fairmont Palliser has been the best of the best when it comes to warm, welcoming stays with a touch of glam and grandeur. Its historic charm flows through every suite and room of the 12 story hotel from the chandelier studded lobby to the rich, wooden furniture throughout. Over the decades, Fairmont Palliser has hosted more than a few notable figures from King Edward VII, Queen Elizabeth II to Oprah, Brad Pitt, Elton John and more.
Alt Hotel Calgary East Village checks all the boxes for a practical stay. It’s eco-friendly, home to three restaurants, more than 150 ultra-comfortable and functional rooms and a super generous price point. Alt Hotel is perfect for those looking for a simple, cosy and affordable stay in one of Calgary’s hippest neighbourhoods.
For more than 40 years, Hotel Blackfoot has been a landmark hotel in Calgary. Famous for their winning hospitality, spacious, comfortable suites and convenient location, it’s no wonder they are a top pick for business and leisure travellers alike. Make your pick from either of their 193 luxuriously designed rooms and suites, take advantage of the state-of-the-art business and fitness centres or spend the day lounging poolside. Looking for some entertainment? There’s an onsite comedy club perfect for an evening of laughs and drinks.
Heading to Calgary and looking to room at the airport? Hotel Clique Calgary is the best place to be. This Euro-chic hotel is the creme de la creme of airport hotels and is a pro at catering to guests from all corners of the globe. Whether you’re travelling for business or just looking to stay in the airport for convenience, Hotel Clique Calgary fits the bill. Take advantage of their wonderful amenities like rooftop hot tubs, complimentary airport shuttles and more. Or how about a delicious meal at their onsite Tonic Kitchen + Bar? Either way, you’re set.
If charming, cosy and romantic boutique hotels are your thing, you need a few nights at Le Germain Hotel Calgary. This swanky hotel is famous for its full-service spa, stylish and modern rooms and a classy lobby lounge perfect for clinking a few glasses. Whether you opt for their Classic Room option or go all-in on the Apartment Suite, it won’t take long to see why Le Germain is one of the best in Calgary.
When it comes to accommodation with style and reputation, you can always count on the Westin. A central location, lavish rooftop pool overlooking the city and surrounding mountains, world-class fitness facilities and 525 rooms split across two towers are just a few things to look forward to here. Best part? The Westin Calgary is pet friendly so you can always bring your favourite travel companion along with you.
Calgary has a reputation for being somewhat of a sprawling city, but if you stay in Downtown or the Beltline you’ll be within easy reach of restaurants and more. Downtown is close to many of the city’s top attractions: Calgary Tower, Glenbow Museum, and Stephen Avenue Walk. The Beltline is a trendy area for bars and restaurants.
The best time of year to visit Calgary is from late May through the end of September, when the weather is nice and there’s many events and festivals in the city. For skiing, visit from November through March.
Most people stay in Calgary for a short period of time on their way to/from the mountain areas of Banff, Jasper and Lake Louise. It’s handy to spend a night or two in Calgary after all that mountain driving!