10+ Things Families Love in Calgary

Mountain Goats at the Calgary Zoo
Mountain Goats at the Calgary Zoo
Calgary and Your Rockies Getaway

10+ Things Families Love in Calgary

Add more fun to your family trip to the Canadian Rockies with these can’t miss experiences that families love in Calgary.

Start your Canadian Rockies adventure in the city and add Calgary to your next family vacation in Alberta.

Just a short drive from Banff and the Canadian Rockies, Calgary is the perfect place to start or end your adventure. The Canadian Rockies are an once-in-a-lifetime experience, but don’t miss out on incredible experiences in the city. From world-class performing arts to some of Canada's top attractions, there are some things you just have to experience in Calgary that you can't get in the mountains. 

Here are a few things families love in Calgary when they come to Alberta for a Rockies getaway.

Alberta Ballet

Alberta Ballet at the Southern Jubilee Auditorium

Alberta Ballet

A night with the Alberta Ballet is the perfect way to get your culture fix before or after an adventure to the Canadian Rockies. One of Canada’s premiere dance companies, Alberta Ballet brings traditional and contemporary productions to the stage, and has collaborated with popular music icons like Joni Mitchell, k.d. lang, and Elton John.

The Vortex Rollercoaster at Calaway Park

The Vortex Rollercoaster at Calaway Park

Timber Falls! At Calaway Park

Timber Falls! At Calaway Park

Calaway Park

If your family loves rollercoasters, rides, and midway games, Calaway Park is a great way to burn some energy before making your way to Banff. Calaway Park is a one pay gate, with great family admission rates, that includes unlimited rides, attractions, stage shows, live entertainment and parking, so you can make a splash with the Bumper Boats and put your hands in the air at Timber Falls! Located on the Trans-Canada Highway just outside the city limits, Calaway Park is a convenient stop between Calgary and Banff.

NHL action with the Calgary Flames at the Scotiabank Saddledome

NHL action with the Calgary Flames at the Scotiabank Saddledome

Calgary Flames

Cheer on the Calgary Flames and feel the energy of the C of Red with live NHL action in the city. The Calgary Flames play 40+ home games from early October to early April each year, making it a great complement to a ski trip in the mountains. The Scotiabank Saddledome is conveniently located in the heart of downtown Calgary with the Calgary Transit C-Train making it accessible from almost anywhere in the city.

The Calgary Stampede is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for families in Calgary.

The Calgary Stampede is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for families in Calgary.

Experience the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth at the Calgary Stampede

Experience the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth at the Calgary Stampede

Calgary Stampede

Check the Calgary Stampede off your bucket list and experience the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth with your family in Calgary. For 10 days each July, the Calgary Stampede entertains visitors from around the world with rodeo action, midway games, and live music. Plan to spend at least one day in Calgary to experience everything the Calgary Stampede has to offer. Family specials throughout the week make admission to the Calgary Stampede an affordable family activity and once-in-a-lifetime experience before your trip to the Rockies

Get 360° views from the observation deck of the Calgary Tower

Get 360° views from the observation deck of the Calgary Tower

Calgary Tower

The Calgary Tower has been an iconic part of the Calgary skyline for decades and is a must-see family experience in the city. Standing 191 metres above the downtown core, the Calgary Tower observation deck gives you a 360° view from the prairies to the Canadian Rockies, with unique views of the hustle and bustle below when you stand on the glass floor. Free multimedia audio tours (available in seven languages) explores must see landmarks in Calgary, from WinSport and Stephen Avenue to the Canadian Rockies.

Rhinos at the Calgary Zoo

Rhinos at the Calgary Zoo.

Camels at the Calgary Zoo

Camels at the Calgary Zoo.

Calgary Zoo

Go wild in the city before your mountain adventure in the Canadian Rockies with a day at the Calgary Zoo. Home to over 800 animals, the Calgary Zoo is the most visited zoo in Canada and a global leader in wildlife conservation. Free daily programing, including keeper & interpreter talks, animal feedings, and creature features make it easy to spend a family friendly day at the Calgary Zoo before or after your Rockies getaway. Gorillas, lions, tigers, bears, giraffes, hippos, and lemurs call the Calgary Zoo home, along with the addition of four giant pandas in 2018 you can’t see anywhere else in Canada.

Heritage Park is Canada’s largest living history museum

Heritage Park is Canada’s largest living history museum.

Heritage Park

Heritage Park is a classic Calgary attraction everyone in the family will enjoy. Canada’s largest living historical village will take you back in time from your first step inside the park. Ride an authentic steam train, get a scoop of old-fashioned ice cream, ride the vintage midway, or take a horse-drawn carriage ride. Heritage Park is an awesome full day experience.

You can raft down the Bow River in just a few hours

You can raft down the Bow River in just a few hours.

The Bow River runs through downtown Calgary

The Bow River runs through downtown Calgary.

River Rafting in the City

Rafting down the Bow River in Calgary is a lazy outdoor adventure you can have in the city before your Rockies getaway. Take a self-guided tour down the Bow River or connect with an expert guide to navigate you through the friendly waters in Calgary that runs right through the downtown core. With no previous rafting experience required and convenient pickup and drop-off points along the river, rafting down the Bow River is a hassle-free experience everyone in the family can enjoy. The Paddle Station, Mukwah Rafting Tours, Lazy Day Raft Rentals, and the University of Calgary Outdoor Centre are great ways to equip your family with all the gear you need or connect with an expert guide for a safe trip down the Bow River.

Spruce Meadows

Spruce Meadows is a world class show jumping facility.

Spruce Meadows

Spruce Meadows is a world class show jumping facility that hosts local and international tournaments throughout the year. Tournaments at Spruce Meadows give you the opportunity to see the best show jumpers in the world, interact with beautiful horses, and experience local shopping, international food vendors, and a great collection of activities for kids. The National, North American, and Masters are must see annual tournaments that bring Olympians and equestrian champions to Calgary each year. Rush seating is only $5.00, with free admission for children 12 and under, making this an affordable family friendly experience you can only see in Calgary.

Studio Bell, Home of the National Music Centre

Spend the day exploring the history of music in Canada.

Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre

Listen to the music at Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre, with five floors of exhibitions that tell the story of music in Canada. Celebrate icons, get behind the drum kit, and find the name of legends at the home of the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame, Canadian Music Hall of Fame, and the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame. Don’t miss out on the chance to see this nationally recognized attraction in Calgary and plan to spend a day of your Rockies getaway exploring the interactive exhibits and classic Canadian memorabilia at Studio Bell.