There is life in Calgary
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
welcomes you warmly
| Calgary, Alberta, Canada lies between the majestic Canadian Rockies to the west and the great plains to the east. |
The city of Calgary is located in the western province of Alberta, less than an hour from the Canadian Rockies and Banff National Park. Calgary offers its visitors two worlds - bustling city life and wilderness adventure.
Calgary's tourist attractions, events, and festivals offer something for everyone. Visit the sports facilities of the Winter Olympics of 1988, climb the Calgary Tower and enjoy the fascinating views of the city and the mountains, visit the zoo with the extraordinary botanical garden and the prehistoric park or discover the Spruce Meadows, an equestrian sports facility of international caliber, during one of their major events.
Learn about the history of western Canada and the early days of the City of Calgary at Heritage Park, the Glenbow Museum or Fort Calgary. Delight in Calgary's rich cultural life, with its theaters and art galleries, as well as its symphony, ballet and opera. Gourmets will find every cuisine imaginable, from exotic dishes from the Far East to the most modern dishes served in beautifully restored restaurants. Spend a day or two at one of the many festivals Calgary has to offer, or join the fans by catching a hockey, baseball, or football game.
For more than 50 years, the white cowboy hat has been a symbol of Calgary hospitality. Over the years, thousands of visitors including celebrities like Bill Cosby have received white hats during a set ceremony. After reading a statement and attempting a "yahoo" for the first time, the visitor is officially recognized as an honorable Calgarian.
Saddle up and discover cowboy country! There's a lot to see in the wild, wild west. Whether you get into the saddle for an hour, a day or a week, there are tours and horses for everyone, from beginners to experienced riders.
Fresh winter air and sunny days delight outdoor enthusiasts of all stripes. Cross-country skiers hike along the snow-covered park trails or on the city trails. Downhill skiers and snowboarders meet at Canada Olympic Park, Calgary's family ski resort. Skaters can indulge in their hobby either in the lagoon at Bowness Park or on the ice rink at Olympic Plaza in downtown Calgary.
| Less than 30 minutes west of Calgary, near the lovely community of Bragg Creek, is the Wintergreen Family Ski Resort. One hour west of the city, in Kananaskis Country, there are two ski areas for downhill skiers. |
Nakiska, the alpine route of the 15th Winter Olympics, offers slopes for every level, from beginners to experts. Fortress Mountain is just minutes south of Nakiska and is ideal for families and powder lovers alike.
Calgary is an ideal base into a world of wilderness adventure. The region is home to some of the most beautiful parks in the world, including Kananaskis Country, Banff, Jasper, and Yoho. A variety of leisure activities, such as hiking, kayak tours, dog sledding, fishing, mountaineering, cycling, balloon rides, rafting, camping and many others await you here.
Calgary in numbers
With an area of 721 square kilometers, Calgary is the second largest city in Canada.
Calgary has a total population of 951,395 (2002 Census).
Calgary is the largest city within the province of Alberta.
The city of Calgary is located at an altitude of 1,048 m above sea level.
Calgary ranks second in Canada for the number of corporate headquarters.
Calgary International Airport is located 20 minutes outside of downtown, at the intersection of Alberta's major highways - Trans Canada # 1 and Highway # 2 to Edmonton. Many airlines offer regular non-stop flights from major cities in North America, Europe and Asia to Calgary. Calgary is served by Air Canada, British Airways, Lufthansa and United Airlines, among others.
Please visit the Calgary International Airport website for more information.
The individual tourist reaches Calgary by car. Highway # 2 heads north to Edmonton and south to the US border. Highway # 1 connects Saskatchewan to the east and Banff, and the province of British Columbia to the west with Calgary.
|Approximate driving times and distances:|
Montana (USA) border to Calgary 150 miles 2.5 hours
Banff to Calgary 118 km 1.25 hours
Edmonton to Calgary 294 km 3 hours
Saskatchewan border to Calgary 350 km 3.5 hours
Vancouver to Calgary 1.049 km 10 hours
Calgary Transit offers regular bus service within the city. For timetable and route information, contact Calgary Transit at 001 (403) 262-1000.
For more information, visit the Calgary Transit website.
Bike lanes within the city
Explore Calgary by bike and use the well-developed network of bike paths. A 300-kilometer network runs through the entire city. Maps are available from the City of Calgary, as well as from various bike shops and other retail outlets. Rental bicycles are available.
Orientation within the city
When looking for specific addresses within the city of Calgary you should know that there is a specific system by which the city is divided. It will take a little while to figure it out, but after that it's pretty easy.
The entire city is divided into four geographical segments, each of which can be found in address names and street signs. These are N.W. (north-west), N.E. (north-east), S.W. (south-west) and S.E. (south-east). The Bow River and Memorial Drive divide the city into north and south. Center St. divides the northern part of the city and the city center into east and west. The southern part of the city is divided into east and west by the MacLeod Trail.
Streets always lead north or south within the city, avenues always go east or west.
Calgary is known for its sunny skies and a moderate four-season climate. Alberta receives more hours of sunshine per year than any other Canadian province.
Summer (June to August): 20ºC
Autumn (Sep to Nov): 11ºC
Winter (Dec to Feb): -11ºC
Spring (March to May): 9ºC
In winter there is often a hair dryer (known as a chinook). This warm, dry wind that forms above the Rocky Mountains can raise the temperature by more than 20 degrees in just a few hours.
Parks and protected areas
Calgary enjoys one of the most beautiful natural locations in a Canadian city.
Fish Creek Provincial Park
Fish Creek Provincial Park is located on the south end of Calgary and extends from the west of the city to the Bow River. It is the largest urban park in Canada. The park protects the river valley over a length of more than ten kilometers and is a natural habitat for a large number of animals and birds. Beautiful hiking trails are ideal for walking and cycling, and the history of cattle ranching in Calgary can be read up at the Visitor Service Center.
For more information, call: 001 (403) 297-5293
|Other parks in Calgary|
Bowness, Edworthy, and Prince's Island Parks are all along the Bow River and offer year-round recreational opportunities. Canoeing, swimming and cycling are very popular in spring and summer. A number of different festivals are on the program. In autumn the parks turn into a paradise of red and gold leaves and are ideal for a stroll or a picnic in the Indian summer. In winter, the hiking trails are covered with snow and thus offer ideal terrain for cross-country skiers, sledge drivers, ice skaters and walkers.
A large number of museums and historical sites are available to visitors to Calgary. The history of the region, from prehistoric times to the present day, is well documented.
Calgary Chinese Cultural Center
The Chinese Cultural Center is located at 197-1st St. S.W. and consists of a Chinese restaurant, a culture museum with priceless artifacts and ceramic artifacts, and an artifact shop. The six-story Great Cultural Hall is modeled on the Temple of Heaven in Beijing. It took more than 100,000 man-hours for Chinese artists to complete.
For more information, please call: 001 (403) 262-5071.
The Calgary Tower is a city landmark and is located in the heart of downtown Calgary. Don't miss out on paying a visit to the tower. In the tower there is an exhibition about the towers of the world. Drive up to the observation deck of the 191 meter high tower and enjoy the breathtaking view of the city and the spectacular Rocky Mountains. In the revolving restaurant you can marvel at the view during breakfast, lunch or dinner.
For more information, please call: 001 (403) 266-7171
Calgary Zoo, Botanical Garden and Prehistoric Park
Located east of downtown on St George's Island, the Calgary Zoo is one of the largest and best zoological institutions in Canada. The Calgary Zoo, Botanical Garden, and Prehistoric Park are home to more than 1,400 animals and thousands of plants. Life-size models of dinosaurs await visitors in the prehistoric park. Underwater glass panels give you a glimpse into the life of polar bears, seals, and other animals when they are underwater.
For more information, call: 001 (403) 232-9300
|Canada Olympic Park |
Canada Olympic Park is about 15 minutes west of the city on the Trans Canada Highway. The city of Calgary hosted the 15th Winter Olympics in 1988, and the Olympic facilities are still in use and can be toured. Guided tours let you understand how the athletes must have felt when they stood on the 70- and 90-meter jumps. Incidentally, this is the highest point in the city. Discover the bobsled run that lets you race down at a speed of 95 km / h.
For more information, call: 001 (403) 247-5452
Heritage Park Historical Village
The Heritage Park is located southwest of the city center on 1900 Heritage Drive, at the intersection of 14th St. SW. The 26 hectare park is western Canada's largest open-air museum and depicts the life of a western Canadian city before 1914 Bay Company, a church from 1896, a working grain mill, an old schoolhouse and a teepee. Board the S.S. Motie paddle steamer or take an old steam locomotive.
For more information, call: 001 (403) 259-1900
Spruce Meadows is an internationally renowned equestrian center and is located south of Calgary. Spruce Meadows is the venue for three major show jumping championships: The National, The North American and The Masters.
For more information, please call: 001 (403) 293-4884
Calgary Police Service Interpretive Center
The Calgary Police Service Interpretive Center is the only exhibit of its kind in Canada and is located on 133-6th Avenue S.E .. Play detective and crime-solving with interactive computer and video exhibits. Learn forensic science from real-life Calgary crime cases.
For more information, please call: 001 (403) 268-4565
Fort Calgary is east of downtown at 750-9th Avenue S.E .. This is where the settlement of Calgary began. The 16-acre park shows the history, settlement and people through exhibits and a video about the Northwest Mounted Police. Only a few foundation walls are left of the old fort. Probably the oldest building in Calgary, the Hunt House was built in 1876 by the Hudson's Bay Company. The neighboring Deane House was built in 1906 by Captain Richard Deane of the NWMP and is now home to a restaurant.
For more information, call: 001 (403) 290-1875 or 001 (403) 269-7747 (Deane House)
Museum of the Regiments
The Museum of the Regiments is Western Canada's largest military museum and is located at 4520 Crowchild Tr. SW. The museum houses the regimental collections of CFB Calgary and Calgary's four regiments - Lord Strathcona Horse (Royal Canadians), King's Own Calgary Regiment, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry and Calgary Highlanders, from.
For more information, call: 001 (403) 974-2850
|Bar U Ranch National Historic Site|
Bar U Ranch is located in the village of Longview, west of the High River. The Bar U Ranch, established in 1882, shows the importance of the livestock industry for the development of the Canadian west. The ranch is in beautiful surroundings and many of the original buildings have been preserved.
Further information is available at
Phone: 001 (403) 395-2212
On April 29, 1903, at 4:10 a.m. local time, one side of Turtle Mountain, above the city of Frank, sagged and buried the city in just 90 seconds with more than 90 million tons of rubble. Around 70 of the total of 600 inhabitants of the city were killed here. The Frank Slide Interpretive Center documents this extraordinary event. The city of Frank is located in the Crowsnest Pass area, in the southwest of the province, about three hours outside of Calgary.
For more information, please call: 001 (403) 562-7388
Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump
The Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump is about 18 km northwest of Fort Macleod, on Spring Point Road, accessible via Highway 2. From Calgary, drive about 90 minutes south. It is one of the largest and best-preserved buffalo jumping sites in North America and is the main tourist attraction in southern Alberta. The world cultural heritage protected by the UN shows an exhibition and the jump point, which documents the buffalo hunt of the Blackfoot Indians. For thousands of years, until the arrival of the Europeans, they drove buffalo over the slope of the rock walls. The place is named after a legend that tells of a young man who once wanted to watch the hunt from below. However, he got caught and was killed by the falling buffalo.
For more information, call: 001 (403) 553-2731
More than 1,600 restaurants offer a wide range of different cuisines. Whether you prefer fresh seafood in an elegant French restaurant, a grilled steak or North American fast food, you are sure to find it.
Country-specific specialties range from Spanish to Chinese, from Italian to Japanese and from German to Thai, to name just a few.
Don't miss the Eau Claire Market, across from the Bow River and Prince's Island Park! Here you will find a wide selection of restaurants and unique specialty shops.
Fourth Street and Uptown 17th Avenue
Quaint neighborhoods with plenty of fine restaurants, bars, nightclubs, and high-quality shops await you on Fourth Street and Uptown 17th Avenue.
Calgary's large and lively Chinatown is next to the city center and offers authentic Chinese cuisine.
Don't miss the opportunity to try the world famous Alberta Steak! Try prime rib or steak at one of the infamous western clubs or steakhouses while you are in the heart of Cattle Country! During the Calgary Stampede, try a syrup-coated pancake and crispy seared bacon breakfast from covered wagons in shopping malls and street corners.
The Calgary area has everything from outdoor street entertainment and professional sporting events to world premieres of theater, music, and dance.
Calgary has a variety of theatrical venues. There are professional theaters, such as the Theater Calgary and the Alberta Theater Projects, as well as satire, improvisational theater or murder mystery evenings. Enjoy an evening with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra or join one of the many amateur acting groups.
Cowboy Country is known for its many popular western clubs. But also jazz, blues, classic rock or pop music performances let everyone get their money's worth. Local beer is served in the city's friendly pubs, sometimes brewed on site.
Festivals and events
Calgary hosts festivals and special events year round. We have listed some of them here:
TransAlta's Wildlights at the Calgary Zoo
International Sled Dog Classic, Canmore
Canada Day Celebrations
Buffalo Days Pow Wow & Tipi Village, Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump
Calgary Folk Festival
Canada's Cowboy Festival
World Cup Bobsleigh & Luge Competitions
International Native Arts Festival
"The Masters" Spruce Meadows
Cody Snyder's Bull Bustin 'Event
Calgary International Children's Festival
Festival of the Trees
Calgary International Jazz Festival
12 Days of Christmas / Heritage Park, weekends
Festival of Lights Display
The annual Calgary Stampede is a powerful display of Western pride and pioneering spirit. Every July, the Stampede turns the entire city upside down and is the venue for entertainers, rough cowboys, glitter parades, free pancake breakfasts and lively street dancing.
Calgary's one-of-a-kind festival began in 1886 as the annual farmers show. In 1889, the success of the event resulted in the purchase of what is now known as Stampede Park.
Every evening nine World Championship covered wagons race to the finish line at a breathtaking pace during the Rangeland Derby.
The ten-day event drew more than 1.25 million people in 1998 and had an economic impact on the city of Calgary of at least $ 116.9 million.
For more information, please call: 001 (403) 261-0101 or toll-free at 1-800-661-1260
Alberta's history as a Canadian province takes place mainly in the late 19th and 20th centuries. Prior to that time, Alberta was home to the indigenous people, whose presence in Alberta can be traced back at least 11,000 years.
The Canadian west remained largely uninhabited by white men until the late 19th century, with the exception of a few trading posts. In 1670 the Hudson's Bay Company was granted exceptional privileges in about a third of North America. She sent his agents out into the wilderness of what is now known as Alberta to set up trading posts that would conduct fur trading with the locals.
In 1745, Anthony Henday was sent to what is now Alberta by the Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) to persuade the locals to come to the HBC forts to trade. He was the first white man in the area. David Thompson, also of the Hudson's Bay Company, visited the Calgary area in 1787, becoming the first European in the area.
There was a lack of law and order in the region and the main source of food for the locals, the buffalo, quickly disappeared from the scene. Sir John A. MacDonald, Canada's first prime minister, quickly realized that the West was not safe from a takeover from the South. In addition, there would be neither a transcontinental railroad nor a settlement in the areas that were so burdened with problems. Therefore, in 1873 he set up the North West Mounted Police (NWMP).
After the Western Territories became part of Canada in 1870, peace negotiations began with the various tribes of Alberta.
Calgary's history began in 1875 with the arrival of the first division of the North West Mounted Police. The NWMP founded Fort Calgary at the confluence of the Bow and Elbow Rivers, in an area that had little population at the time.
Col. James Macleod, of the NWMP, named Calgary after Calgary Bay, on the Isle of Mull, Scotland.
In 1881, Calgary consisted of a Hudson's Bay Company store, an I.G. Baker Company Store, the NWMP barracks and the first officer's house, as well as 75 residents. It wasn't until the arrival of the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1883 that Calgary's population began to increase. There were around 1,000 people in Calgary in 1885, 2,000 in 1889, and nearly 4,000 in 1891.
On November 7, 1884, Calgary officially became a town. Less than 10 years later, on January 1, 1894, it became a city.
In 1905 Alberta and Saskatchewan joined the Canadian Confederation as provinces.
The oil industry has its roots in the Turner Valley oil fields, 35 km southwest of town, where oil was discovered in 1914. In 1947 oil was found in the Leduc oil fields. The discovery of the oil reserves would change the face of the entire region forever. Because of the rapid development in the energy sector, the population more than doubled between 1959 and 1979, from 218,418 to 530,816 people.
In 1912, four wealthy ranchers sponsored the Calgary Stampede as a one-off event. The Stampede was revived in 1919 but did not become an annual event until 1923.
In 1982 Calgary became Canada's second largest city in terms of area.
Calgary welcomed the world to the 1988 Winter Olympics.
Alberta's indigenous people live in eight reservations within the province. Four of these reserves are near Calgary - the Siksika, Peigan, Tsuu T'ina, and Stoney. An important factor in the life of the indigenous people is the preservation of their culture. Visitors are always welcome to powder wows and rodeos, where competitors from all over North America come together to take part in dance competitions or rodeo events.
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