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How to Spend 24 Hours in Calgary

How to Spend 24 Hours in Calgary

Looking for fun things to do during your 24 hours in Calgary?

If you’re going to Banff, chances are you’re probably flying in or out of Calgary to get there!

Banff is actually only about an hour and a half drive from Calgary.

Don’t sleep on spending some time in Calgary – you can totally have a fun 24 hours exploring the city.

Whether you’re looking to get a taste of authentic Canadian cuisine or want to do some hiking near the city, there are plenty of fun things to do in and around Calgary.

If you’re wondering what to see and do in Calgary, here’s how to spend a fun 24 hours exploring the city!

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Hotels in Calgary

If you’re looking for somewhere to stay during your trip to Calgary, here are some of the best hotels to stay at:

  • The Alt Hotel is an eco-friendly 3 star hotel located right in the middle of downtown Calgary, in the East Village neighbourhood. It’s a quick walk over to the Bow River, where you can do all kinds of fun activities during the warmer months.
  • Hotel Arts is a beautiful and modern 4 star hotel in Calgary’s trendy Beltline neighbourhood, and there’s an indoor pool, outdoor pool, and fitness centre.
  • The Fairmont Palliser is a 4 star hotel located right in the heart of downtown Calgary, right beside the Calgary Tower. The rooms are a little more traditional, but the indoor pool is absolutely incredible.
Plan your Calgary trip

If you’re planning a trip to Alberta, here are some other posts to help you plan your perfect trip:

Tours & activities in Calgary

Spending all your time in downtown Calgary? You might enjoy these tours and activities:

  • Floating down the Bow River is one of the top activities to do in downtown Calgary, and you can choose between different rafts depending on the size of your party (including your pets!)
  • If you’re looking to explore Calgary with a guide, you might enjoy this 60-minute guided segway tour that takes you around the Bow River (or the longer 90-minute version).
  • Another great guided tour in Calgary is this vintage sidecar motorcycle tour, where you get to enjoy the sights and sounds of Calgary while riding alongside your own driver!
  • This self-guided GPS walking tour is another fun option, and you can explore downtown Calgary while listening to the tour guide speak on your phone.

Looking to explore the Canadian Rocky Mountains while in Calgary? Try one of these guided day tours:

How to spend 24 hours in Calgary

OEB Breakfast in Calgary, Alberta

Brunch at OEB Breakfast Co.

Calgary is actually a pretty great city for foodies, and you’ll find plenty of awesome restaurants – including great brunch spots!

OEB is a Calgary-based breakfast chain with locations in Canada and the U.S., and they’ve got a huge menu with unique takes on classic brunch dishes that will satisfy everyone in your party (or just yourself if you’re flying solo).

If you’d prefer to check out restaurants that aren’t part of chains or franchises, I’ve got a blog post all about the best brunch spots in Calgary!

LOCATION: Various locations

Bow River rafting in downtown Calgary, Alberta

Ride down the Bow River

The Bow River runs straight through downtown Calgary, and it’s a popular spot in the summer for floating, kayaking, and stand-up paddle boarding.

Floating on a raft is one of the best water activities to do in Calgary, and you can choose between raft sizes of 4 to 10 people – pets are welcome as well!

There are plenty of entry and exit points along the river, so you can start and stop from plenty of places if you’re kayaking or stand-up paddle boarding, but be wary of the strong currents!

Riding e-scooters along the Bow River in downtown Calgary, Alberta

Cycle or scoot along the Bow River Pathway

Looking to do a little exercise while you’re oot and aboot in Calgary?

The Bow River Pathway is a pedestrian and bike path that runs along both sides of the Bow River, so you can loop around it and enjoy the views of downtown Calgary and the river.

Rent a bike at a nearby bike shop in downtown Calgary, or pick up an e-scooter from Bird or Neuron.

If you’re looking to invest in a great-quality electric bike, EVT Bikes is based out of Calgary and their bikes are great for cycling around the city!

If you’d rather do a tour, this fun 60-minute guided segway tour is a great way to zoom around the river!

Peace Bridge in Calgary, Alberta

Walk under the Peace Bridge

There are quite a few bridges hanging over the Bow River, and the uniquely-designed Peace Bridge is made for pedestrians and cyclists to enjoy.

Take a walk under the bridge and snap some cool photos, or zoom through it on a scooter or bike!

LOCATION: Peace Bridge, Calgary, AB

Stroll through Prince’s Island Park

Prince’s Island Park is one of the nicest parks in Calgary, and it’s the perfect place for an afternoon stroll.

It’s actually located right by the Peace Bridge, so you can just walk on over after stopping by the bridge!

If you’re looking to spend a little time relaxing, you can grab some bubble tea nearby from The Alley, Gong Cha, or CoCo in Chinatown and have a little picnic by the river.

Paid street parking is available, and it’s free on Sundays.

Fun fact: this actually used to be home to a sawmill!

LOCATION: 698 Eau Claire Ave SW, Calgary, AB

Public art in downtown Calgary, Alberta

Check out the street art in downtown Calgary

Whether you’re looking to admire art or snap a photo for the ‘Gram, there are plenty of cool murals and public art to see in downtown Calgary.

The Beltline Urban Murals Project is really cool to see and is located in the hip Beltline neighbourhood!

Go up the Calgary Tower

Hey, maybe it’s super touristy, but there’s nothing like seeing the city from up above.

You can peep out the 360 degree views of Calgary from 191 metres high at the Calgary Tower, and if you’re brave enough, you can walk along the glass floors at the observation deck.

On a clear day, you’ll be able to see the Rocky Mountains from the tower.

Admission is $18 per person, and you can come in the evening to watch the sunset!

LOCATION: 101 9 Ave SW, Calgary, AB

How to spend 24 hours in Calgary:

  1. Brunch at OEB Breakfast Co.
  2. Ride down the Bow River
  3. Cycle or scoot along the Bow River Pathway
  4. Walk under the Peace Bridge
  5. Stroll through Prince’s Island Park
  6. Check out the street art in downtown Calgary
  7. Go up the Calgary Tower

Calgary may not be a huge city, but it’s still a fun place to visit with plenty of great things to do.

Have you been to Calgary? How would you spend 24 hours in Calgary? Let me know on Twitter or Instagram!

If you’re planning a trip to Alberta, here are some other posts to help you plan your perfect trip:

Jessica Lam | Toronto lifestyle, fashion, beauty, and travel blogger | Diary of a Toronto Girl, a Canadian lifestyle blog

How many days should I stay in Calgary?

Calgary isn’t a very large city, so one day is enough to spend exploring it.

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