Hello our adventurous friends,
as you know we live in Calgary, so we thought we would share our favorite places in downtown Calgary with you. Maybe you are someone who might not be very familiar with the attractions and places there or you're a tourist landing in Calgary and who wants to spend some time here. We met many tourists who asked us what they could do in downtown Calgary while visiting. Well those are our favorite places which we are sure you will make you fall in love with the city!
Calgary or how some call it "Cowtown", is known for its yearly Calgary Stampede and to be a booming oil town. It's also home of the Calgary Flames (ice hockey) and the Calgary Stampeders (football). It is also well known for it's Winter Olympics 1988 and the movie "Cool Runnings" with John Candy. Many people don't know that Calgary is Alberta's largest city and Canada's third-largest municipality. We bet you didn't even know that Calgary is bigger than New York but only 1.3 million people live here. This city offers something for everyone. Here is our list of the top five places to check out in Calgary downtown.
The 8th avenue is the heart of downtown and the place to be. Around noon the street is getting busy with those enjoying a break from the office. You can enjoy several shops and restaurants like Cactus Club Cafe or The Metropolitan Grill. One of our most favorite places is the National on 8th, which has western Canada’s largest rooftop patio. A perfect place to enjoy some beer and delicious food while being surrounded by the concrete jungle. Stephen Avenue is also famous for its gigantic sculptures between 2nd and 3rd street, which are referred to as the 'Galleria Trees'.
If you enjoy shopping or the weather is not the greatest, we would highly recommend a day at one of Calgary's malls. Located in the heart of downtown along Stephen Avenue, the CORE - TD Square - Holt Renfrew features four storeys of shops and services, a large food court, and an indoor tropical garden. Among the CORE’s 160-plus stores, you will find exclusive fashions, accessories and lifestyle items. The centre's architectural focal point is a vast suspended glass skylight which spans the length of the complex. The perfect place to shop and relax in their tropical garden.
If you wonder where all the people are it's on 17 avenue. This is the place to be, to dine, to walk, shop and party. There are boutique shops, fine-dining restaurants, lively lounges and inspirational cafes mix to create one of Calgary's most popular lifestyle destinations. There are also salons and spas, business offices and services that include everything from tailors to dentists. Our favorite restaurants is Cleaver. They have the best food and cocktails in the city and they offer specials like their $3 sliders and $5 cocktails. You can't beat that! You should definitely make a reservation as this restaurant is very popular among Calgarians. Oh and by the way they have the BEST Caesar stack in the city. A must try! If you're looking to relax after a long day head to clear float spa. They offer floating sessions and with our code "#sandp" you can save 10%. To learn more about floating click here.
The Calgary Tower is a must-see for any visitor. On the observation deck, you can experience a 360° panoramic view of the city, the foothills and the majestic Rocky Mountains. Walk on the glass deck or lay down if you dare. Whatever you do you'll have the best view of the city and some awesome pictures. They also have the famous restaurant "Sky 360" from the movie "Cool Runnings" in case you get hungry. Our tip is to order an entrée, and the restaurant takes care of your elevation fee and entitles you access to the Calgary Tower Observation Deck.
Prince's Island park and Peace Bridge
Calgary's summers are short but beautiful. That's why Calgarians love to spend their time outside as much as they can. One place to take a walk and relax in the city is at Prince's Island Park, an urban park that is developed on an island on the Bow River, immediately north of downtown Calgary. Every summer the park hosts several events and festivals, such as the Calgary Folk Music Festival, Expo Latino and Shakespeare by the Bow. It is also a perfect place to do a little picnic or just enjoy the sunshine. Our tip is to go in the evening as it is less crowded and you can take pictures by the Canada150 sign that is displayed in the park.
If you keep walking west you will get to the Peace Bridge. It's a pedestrian bridge, designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, that accommodates both pedestrians and cyclists crossing the Bow River in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. It became one of Calgary's most famous landmarks. If you want some great shots of the city, we would recommend to you to cross the bridge and take pictures of the city in the background.