Welcome to Calgary

Here you will find all of the necessary information to make the best of your time in Calgary. From arrival and departure information, restaurant and sightseeing recommendations as well as general information about the city.

CALGARY WEATHER

Search By:

About Calgary, Alberta

Calgary, Alberta is located in the foothills of the Canadian Rocky Mountains with the Prairies to the east and Banff National Park to the west.  If you are travelling on one of our one-way Canadian Rockies tours, Calgary will serve as a starting or ending point for you. Calgary is the home to the Canada Rail Vacations team so if you’re feeling up to it, drop us a line and we’d be happy to show you around! It is also home to the Calgary Stampede, otherwise known as “The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth”.

Population – 1.3 Million


Arrival Information:

When arriving in Calgary with an overnight stay downtown, please make your way to the arrivals exit upon clearing customs and baggage. Immediately outside the exit door is a taxi stand. As of 2021, airport to downtown Calgary hotel fares will range between CAD $40 – $50 per taxi depending on the time of service and traffic conditions. Taxis accept all major credit cards, CAD and USD, and are the easiest, most affordable mode of transportation from the airport.

If we have arranged your private hotel transfer, you will find your driver holding a sign with your name right at the passenger exit. Please follow the link provided on your itinerary for your private transfer to see additional details.

Uber and Lyft are also available in Calgary but are not recommended as transportation from the airport as they are not allowed to pick up directly from the arrivals section.

If you are a visitor to Canada and you are not a citizen of the USA, you may be required to purchase an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). This document can be purchased for CAD $7.00 and most applications are approved within minutes of applying. Please visit the following government site for information and to purchase this eTA: Electronic Travel Authorization.

For guests going directly to Banff or Lake Louise from the Calgary Airport with a transfer included, the transportation is provided by Brewster Travel Canada. We kindly request that you check in with Brewster upon arrival at the airport. The Brewster check-in desk is on the arrivals (ground) level near Arrivals Door 5/6, between the Starbucks and Tim Horton’s. Brewster’s bus will transfer you directly to your hotel in Banff or Lake Louise. Please follow the link provided on your travel itinerary for your scheduled transfer to see additional details.

If we have arranged for your private transfer from the airport to Banff or Lake Louise, you will find your driver holding a sign with your name right at the passenger exit. Please follow the link provided on your travel itinerary for your private transfer to see additional details.

If you are a visitor to Canada and you are not a citizen of the USA, you may be required to purchase an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). This document can be purchased for CAD $7.00 and most applications are approved within minutes of applying. Please visit the following government site for information and to purchase this eTA: Electronic Travel Authorization.

If you are arriving in Calgary by way of a scheduled motorcoach transfer from Banff or Lake Louise, you will be dropped off at the Calgary Airport or one of the following hotels.

  • Calgary Marriott Hotel
  • Delta Calgary Downtown
  • Fairmont Palliser Hotel
  • International Hotel Suites Calgary
  • Sandman Calgary City Centre
  • Westin Calgary

If the hotel that you are staying at is not listed, you will be dropped off at the nearest available drop-off location which should be within walking distance. Please reconfirm with the driver where you are heading, as if time permits, they may be able to drop you off closer to your destination. Please follow the link provided on your travel itinerary for your scheduled transfer to see additional details.

If you are arriving in Calgary by way of a private transfer from Banff or Lake Louise, you will be dropped off at the appropriate location. Please follow the link provided on your travel itinerary for your private transfer to see additional details.


Departure Information:

When departing from Calgary after an overnight stay at a Calgary hotel, you have several options to reach the airport. The front desk at your hotel will be happy to order a taxi for you. As of 2021, downtown Calgary hotels to the Calgary International airport fares will range between CAD $40 – $50 per taxi, depending on the time of service and traffic conditions. Taxis accept all major credit cards, CAD and USD.

If we have arranged your private airport transfer, your driver will meet you at your hotel. Please follow the link provided on your travel itinerary for your private transfer to see additional details.

Uber and Lyft are also available in Calgary, depending on the type of service/vehicle, the trip from your hotel to the Calgary International airport will cost between CAD $35 – $50.

It is recommended that you arrive at the airport 3 hours prior to an international flight or 1.5 hours prior to a domestic flight.

If you have a motorcoach transfer or private transfer from Banff or Lake Louise to the Calgary Airport, you will be dropped off at the appropriate section of the airport well in advance of your flight. Please follow the link provided on your travel itinerary for your transfer to see additional details.

For guests going directly to Banff or Lake Louise from the Calgary Airport with a transfer included, the transportation is provided by Brewster Travel Canada. We kindly request that you check in with Brewster upon arrival at the airport. Brewster has two check-in desks on the arrivals (ground) level: at Arrivals Door 5 and Arrivals Door 12. For international arrivals, the Brewster desk at Door 12 is approximately a 3-minute walk – just past the doors to the Marriott Airport Hotel. For Canadian arrivals, the Brewster desk at Door 5 is located between the Starbucks and Tim Horton’s. Brewster’s bus will transfer you directly to your hotel Banff or Lake Louise. Please follow the link provided on your travel itinerary for your scheduled transfer to see additional details.

If we have arranged for your private transfer from the airport to Banff or Lake Louise, you will find your driver holding a sign with your name right at the passenger exit. Please follow the link provided on your travel itinerary for your private transfer to see additional details.

If we have arranged for your private transfer from a Calgary hotel to Banff or Lake Louise, your driver will meet you at your hotel. Please follow the link provided on your travel itinerary for your private transfer to see additional details.


Restaurant Recommendations:

The city of Calgary is known for its beef and its local beer selection. Here is a list of some of our Restaurant Recommendations:

Charbar ~ Seafood, wood-fired steaks, and craft cocktails, plus a river-view rooftop patio in the East Village. Smart casual attire.
Address: 618 Confluence Way SE

Murrieta’s Westcoast Bar & Grill ~ A sophisticated upscale restaurant serving seafood and steak with live music on Friday and Saturday nights. Smart casual attire.
Address: 808 1 Street SW, #200

River Cafe ~ Upscale cuisine, locally sourced ingredients, and served in a chic restored property on Prince’s Island. Brunch is served on weekends. Smart casual attire.
Address: Princes Island Park

Native Tongues Taqueria ~ A modern take on Mexican street food, plus unique cocktails and a late-night menu. Casual attire.
Address: 235 12 Avenue SE

The Bank & Baron P.U.B. ~ Upscale pub food in an old 1930s restored historical bank on Stephen Avenue. Casual attire.
Address: 125 8th Ave SW


Sightseeing Recommendations:

The Calgary Stampede – The Calgary Stampede is an annual rodeo, exhibition, and festival held every July. The ten-day event, which bills itself as “The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth” attracts over one million visitors per year and features one of the world’s largest rodeos, a parade, midway, stage shows, concerts, agricultural competitions, chuckwagon racing, and First Nations exhibitions.

2022 Dates – July 8 – 17, 2022
2023 Dates – July 7 – 16, 2023

The newly revitalized East Village of Calgary’s downtown core is host to scores of attractions and experiences. At the furthest east end is Fort Calgary, a wooden fort built by the North West Mounted Police in 1875, which also houses a cultural centre and museum.

Nearby is the new Calgary Central Library, designed by internationally recognized architecture firm Snøhetta. Stop in to satisfy your inner design guru before heading over to the Glenbow Museum. In addition to permanent exhibits showcasing Alberta’s history and the Blackfoot Indigenous culture, the museum hosts several travelling exhibitions at a time.

The Calgary Tower is a 190.8-meter (626 ft) free-standing observation tower that offers a view of our beloved Rocky Mountains and the city from above.

Calgary is proud to be home to over 40 unique breweries, distilleries, and even a cidery. Most breweries have taprooms open to the public, but if you want to enjoy a few brews without travelling between each one, check out the downtown Craft Beer Market at 345 10 Avenue SW.

Whether you are beginning or ending your journey in Calgary, anticipate what’s to come or reflect on what you’ve seen while strolling along either side of the mighty Bow River. If you walk through Prince’s Island Park, you might be lucky enough to see one of the many events scheduled throughout the year. This park hosts a variety of music festivals and events. If you're feeling adventurous, one of Calgary's most popular summer activities is to float down the bow river.

If you’re a shopaholic, right in the middle of downtown Calgary is the CORE Shopping Centre. Need a break from shopping? On the fourth floor of the CORE Shopping Centre is a public urban oasis: the Devonian Gardens. Stroll through one hectare of botanical gardens and marvel over the enormous living wall.

Just outside of the CORE is Stephen Avenue. Taking up three blocks of 8th Avenue, this foot-traffic-only section of downtown is home to many great shops, bars and restaurants.

For the sports enthusiast, hop in a taxi and head to the west edge of the city on the Trans-Canada Highway (about 20 –30 minutes each way) to Canada Olympic Park, home to Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame, and grounds of the 1988 Winter Olympics.

Studio Bell is home to The National Music Centre. If you’re a music buff like many of our team members, you will enjoy hands-on instrument areas, concerts, historical exhibits, and artifacts; you can even opt for a guided tour that gets you “backstage” to see things like the piano Elton John wrote his first five albums on.

Calgary is also a tour-stop for all kinds of performers, so you may also wish to check online for any events happening during your visit with a website like Ticketmaster.