Today we will be discussing the hidden gems in Calgary, Alberta. All those fun places that only the locals know and keep a tight lip about *wink*. I hope you are as excited as I am about these gems. Your visit to Calgary will not be complete until you visit these beautiful but lesser known places.
1. The Calgary Farmers’ Market
Calgary farmers’ market is your sure bet when it comes to a variety of local farm produces. It is located on 510 77th Avenue SE. It is open every Thursday through Sunday all through the year. You don’t have to bother about the horrible weather condition as it is indoor. The Calgary farmer’s market has lots of visitors weekly and over 80 vendors selling the freshest local produce and baked goods. Visit the market in your free time and buy from the numerous baked goods available in the market.
2. Inglewood Bird Sanctuary and Nature Center
This is sure to catch the attention of bird lovers. Inglewood bird sanctuary was open in 1929 and plays host to over 200 species of birds. Every budding Ornithologist has to visit this bird Sanctuary. Nonbird lovers can also go there. It has a beautiful park. You can simply sit down for hours lying down on the river bank while listening to the musical chirps of the birds. Do not forget to come with your binoculars. Who knows, you might spot a new species of bird. You can pop into The Uncommons on your way back from the Sanctuary for your unique artisanal goods.
3. Betty Lou’s Library
I am sorry to break this to you but this is not a library for books. Betty Lou’s library is one of the finest and must visit cocktail bars in Calgary. The Library has a 1920’s setting that will surely take you back in time. It is advisable that you and your company make a reservation beforehand. You should arrive before your reserved time because you do have to look for the entrance to Betty Lou. The front door is hidden so put on your detective’s hat and get searching.
4. Rooftop Bar at the Simmons
Is it the food or is it the breathtaking view of Bow’s river that makes the Simmon’s rooftop a must visit. In the summer, you get to watch the beautiful Calgary sunset from the location as well. The bar has lots of mouth-watering menus to keep your taste buds satiated while still craving for more. The Fior di latte was recommended to me by a friend and I am glad I took her advice.
5. Catch a match at Calgary Flames
Wandering where you can catch a live hockey match in Calgary? Calgary Flames is the place to be at. Calgary Flames is located in Scotiabank Saddledome and plays host to a number of events all through the year. It was open to the public in 1983 and hosted quite a number of events at the 1988 winter Olympics. It is the home to Calgary’s NHL team, Calgary’s flame. If you are a hockey fan, hurry and book your ticket. I would recommend you book for their game against Edmonton Oilers (their arch nemesis).
6. Village Ice Cream
Village ice cream is housed in three different locations all over Calgary. Village ice cream is a really cool place to hang out at any time of the year. This locally made ice cream is super delicious. Some of their popular flavors include salted caramel, melted chocolate, and two hills earl. I will recommend the Mint guide flavor, try it out and let me know what you think about it. Nothing beats the sensation of ice cream melting and sliding down your throat.
7. Visit Chinatown
Chinatown is a pretty popular place amongst tourist all thanks to the beautiful bikeway that pass through this region. What they do not know however is that it is home to some of the finest Chinese restaurants and street food. Do you have a yearning for Chinese dumplings or any other Asian cuisine? Chinatown is the place to quench that yearn at a really affordable rate.
8. Visit Scotsman Hill
Are you leaving Calgary soon? Do you need a perfect location for your pictures? Scotsman’s hill is a perfect choice. Our list of hidden gems in Calgary will not be complete without mentioning Scotsman Hill. It is a popular choice for grad pictures and family photos by residence. It is most perfect for night shots especially at dusk when downtown Calgary is lit up. A lot of the pictures of downtown Calgary you see on the internet are taken from this Hill.
9. Attend the Globalfest fireworks display
If you are in Calgary in August then you are in for a wonderful treat. The Globalfest fireworks take place in August every year in Elliston Park. The people of Calgary gather in this park for a breathtaking view of the impressive fireworks that go off all night long. The spots near the lake give you the best views. To add more spice to its fireworks, the festival is popular for its “pyromusicals”. The fireworks are set to the beat of the music. Isn’t that amazing?
10. The Paddle station
Some people are satisfied with sitting on the banks of bow river while a more adventurous and fun-seeking group wants to go inside the water. If you belong to the latter group, the paddle station is for you. The paddle station is where you go to rent a raft or kayak to take on a spin on the Bow River. You can book your raft online, pick it up and paddle around the river. All you need do once you are done is drop off the boat at any paddle station. You do not need to go back to your starting point on the raft.
This concludes our top ten hidden gems in Calgary. Be sure to visit them the next time you are in Calgary and please let us know what you think of these gorgeous places.
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Updated: June 25, 2019