48 Hours in Calgary: Spring Guide

couple exploring Calgary's parks in full bloom during spring
couple exploring Calgary's parks in full bloom during spring
Seasonal Itinerary

48 Hours in Calgary: Spring Guide

The top things to do in the city during a spring visit

Springtime in Calgary brings with it a renewed sense of energy with longer days and warmer temperatures returning. With more sunlight hours to spend outdoors, it’s time to shake off those sleepy winter moods and explore the city. Here are some fun ideas for your budding spring visit. 

Supress from menu


Day One: Cultural and Historic Exploration 

Morning in Kensington  

One of Calgary’s most walkable neighbourhoods, Kensington is the city’s coffee capital with more than a dozen different coffee shops, making it the perfect place to jumpstart the day. Located by the Bow River, you can enjoy your steaming cup of joe and stroll through beautiful destinations like the scenic Senator Patrick Burns Memorial Rock Garden or take a selfie at the iconic Peace Bridge.  

Where to Eat: Breakfast  

  • Higher Ground: The city’s oldest still-operating coffee house first opened its doors in 1982. It continues to serve fresh organic coffee and teas of all kinds, along with all-day breakfast staples like breakfast burritos, bagels, and avocado toast.  
  • Red’s Diner: All-day breakfast, brunch, and burgers, all made from farm-fresh ingredients, are just a few of the many tantalizing menu offerings at this classic diner. For an extra morning kick, pair your Eggs Benedict with a boozy coffee.    
  • Fuwa Fuwa: Fuwa Fuwa translates to “fluffy fluffy” and is North America’s largest soufflé pancake and dessert café. With 15 different pancake flavours to choose from, Fuwa Fuwa ensures there’s a fluffy pancake for everyone.  

What to Do: Self-Guided Art Walk 

With the ice melted away and comfortable temperatures, spring is the perfect time to enjoy a self-guided art walk. #KensingtonBRIGHT is an interactive public art installation featuring four vibrant and colourful works of art from five local artists. View the walkable map here. Afterwards, pop into the Franz Dopf Gallery or the Hidden Gem market featuring 90 local artisans. 


Afternoon in Chinatown  

Calgary’s Chinatown is the fourth-largest in Canada, and features a diverse mix of Asian cultures, food, entertainment, and plenty more to discover and enjoy.  

Where to Eat: Lunch  

  • Silver Dragon: Enjoy authentic and delicious Cantonese and Szechuan dishes. Plus, find not-to-be-missed dim sum options at this family-owned and operated Chinatown staple. 
  • 1 Pot: Treat yourself to all-you-can-eat hot pot at this unique and personalized hot pot stop. The easy six-step guide walks you through choosing a broth, ingredients, and dipping sauce for the perfect pot. 
  • Point Sushi: Step into Calgary’s first and only bullet train sushi bar. Customers can order a variety of sushi, tempura, udon, desserts, drinks, and more from a tablet, and their order is then delivered via a miniature bullet train system. Fun and tasty for all ages. 

What to Do: Visit a Free Cultural Museum 

Featuring a 70-foot-high ceiling modelled after the Temple of Heaven in Beijing, the Chinese Cultural Centre has its own museum presenting the history of Chinese Canadians, Chinese culture, rare replicas and a rotating art exhibition from local Chinese artists — and it’s free to visit. If you are interested in more history, the historical walking tour of Chinatown offers more insights, which you can discover at your own pace.   

Supress from menu
people walk along peace bridge during sunset in Calgary with purple flowers in the foreground

Stop for a photo op at Calgary's iconic Peace Bridge (photo credit: Thomas Norman)

young girl admires the 70 foot decorative ceiling at the Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre

Visit the Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre (photo credit: Colin Way)


Evening in the Beltline/Victoria Park  

Beltline is home to dozens of eclectic businesses, making it a popular central destination to explore, shop, dine and more. It is also a hub for art murals as the originator of the BUMP Festival. Victoria Park, located within Beltline, is one of the oldest communities in Calgary and was named after Queen Victoria in 1889. 

Where to Eat: Dinner  

  • Bridgette Bar: This chef-driven bar in an inviting mid-century modern space is the perfect dining destination for romantic dates, drinks with friends or a late-night snack of thin-crust pizza. 
  • Ten Foot Henry: Named after a Calgary-made comic strip, this innovative restaurant offers a fresh and delicious vegetable-forward menu in a bright and welcoming family-style-dining setting. 
  • Pat & Betty: Inspired by the passionate women who raised them, owners Pat and Betty embody similar passion when preparing comfort dishes and desserts from old family recipes alongside savoury dishes made with Canadian ingredients.  

What to Do: Take a Dip, Enjoy a Sip 

Relax at Calgary’s only urban thermal spa in the heart of the Beltline to wholly rejuvenate at the end of the day. SKA Thermal Spa offers an array of massage and facial services, all aimed at complete relaxation. Afterwards, head to Proof YYC to sip on a nightcap and keep that relaxed mood flowing. Choose from its small sips menu or indulge in a classic cocktail.  

Where to Stay  

  • Hotel Arts: The nights may still be a bit nippy, but Hotel Arts, a stylish boutique hotel, has a heated outdoor pool to enjoy south beach vibes year-round.  
  • Fairfield Inn & Suites: Enjoy free breakfast, valet parking, and thoughtfully designed rooms at this family-friendly hotel. 
  • Hyatt Regency Calgary: Enjoy the impressiveness of the largest guest rooms in the city, moments away from the bustling Stephen Avenue Walk in the heart of downtown
Supress from menu
couple admires large mural 'SÔHKÂTISIWIN' by Kevin Ledo in downtown Calgary

Find BUMP Murals throughout downtown, including 'SÔHKÂTISIWIN' by Kevin Ledo (photo credit: Colin Way)

full restaurant service at Ten Foot Henry

Ten Foot Henry’s vegetable-forward menu is a favourite for locals & visitors alike (photo credit: Travel Alberta/ROAM Creative) 


Day Two: Pancakes, Parks and Pinball   

Morning on 4th Street 

Located amid historic sites and modern urban developments, 4th Street is a lively strip with more than 300 businesses, including shopping, dining, and personal services.  

Where to Eat: Breakfast 

  • Seed N Salt: Boasting locally sourced ingredients and healthy options that don’t lack flavour, this breakfast stop offers energizing toast, bowl and salad options to power you through the day.  
  • La Boulangerie: If you prefer a sweet start to your morning, you’ll find it at this French bakery with crème brulée, sweet scones, croissants, and more. 
  • Purple Perk: Small town café charm meets coffee, milkshakes, and breakfast classics at any hour of the day.  

What to Do: Visit Historic Parks 

Take a stroll through parks like Central Memorial Park, the oldest park in the city, modelled after formal Victorian gardens. Towards the opposite end of 4th Street is William Aberhart Park, which boasts a community garden, picnic tables and green space. Finally, check out the Elbow River Pathway, spanning 20 kilometres along the river and connecting many more parks, viewpoints and scenic destinations.  

Supress from menu
aerial view of Central Memorial Park in downtown Calgary

Central Memorial Park (photo credit: ROAM Creative)

couple walks next to a water fountain in Central Memorial Park in downtown Calgary

Central Memorial Park (photo credit: Colin Way)


Evening on 17th Ave SW 

Home to more than 700 unique businesses, there’s always something new to discover when visiting 17th Ave SW. In addition to several blocks full of shopping, dining and nightlife, there are various events hosted year-round, including street performers, live music, wine tastings, and more.  

Where to Eat: Dinner 

  • Una Pizza + Wine: This neighbourhood restaurant serves California-influenced, thin-crust pizzas perfectly paired with hand-picked wines for a full-bodied dining experience.   
  • Tropical on 17th: Authentic Mexican street food and tropical cocktails go hand-in-hand with Latin dancing and entertainment hosted weekly at this fun spot.  
  • Pigeonhole: Focused on serving creative small plates with classic flavours alongside an eclectic wine selection, this is a great stop for either a quick bite or extended dining feast.  

What to Do: Play Pinball at PinBar 

Calgary’s first pinball and arcade bar serves craft beer and bar grub favourites like wings, burgers and nachos that you can enjoy after trying your hand at a variety of classic pinball machines. Enjoy free pinball every Monday and Wednesday or buy a $5 pinball card to play as much as you want. 

Where to Stay 

  • Fairmont Palliser: Spend a night in a regal icon of Canadian history, located in the heart of Calgary’s downtown.  
  • Best Western Plus Calgary Centre Inn: Comfort, style, and convenience meet in this easy-to-access hotel. 
  • The Westley Hotel: A former office building transformed into a beautiful one-of-a-kind boutique space, but with the slick service and prestige of the Hilton brand.  
Supress from menu
aerial view of Calgary's bustling 17th Avenue at night

Explore Calgary’s nightlife on 17th Avenue (photo credit: Ian Matheson)

dinner spread at Tropical on 17th

Indulge in Mexican street food and Latin dancing at Topical on 17th