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Discover Calgary’s Hidden Gems: Day Trips and Weekend Getaways (2024)

Nestled in the picturesque province of Alberta, Calgary is not only a vibrant city but also a gateway to numerous breathtaking destinations. If you’re seeking a break from the urban hustle and bustle, you’re in luck! 

Discover Calgary’s Hidden Gems: Day Trips and Weekend Getaways

This article serves as a comprehensive guide to day trips and weekend getaways from Calgary, offering a range of options to satisfy every traveler’s wanderlust.

Banff National Park: Majestic Mountain Escapade  

  1. Overview: Just a short drive from Calgary lies the crown jewel of the Canadian Rockies, Banff National Park. Immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring beauty of snow-capped peaks, crystal-clear lakes, and abundant wildlife.
  2. Must-See Attractions:
  1. Lake Louise: Be captivated by the turquoise waters of Lake Louise and marvel at the stunning Victoria Glacier.
  1. Moraine Lake: Explore the pristine beauty of Moraine Lake, known for its vivid turquoise hues and surrounding mountain vistas.
  1. Banff Town: Stroll through the charming streets of Banff, indulge in local cuisine, and browse boutique shops.

 Canmore: Adventure and Serenity

  1. Overview: Located just outside Banff National Park, Canmore offers a perfect blend of adventure and relaxation. Experience the majestic Rocky Mountains while enjoying a laid-back atmosphere.
  2. Highlights:
  1. Hiking and Mountain Biking: Lace up your hiking boots or hop on a mountain bike to explore Canmore’s extensive trail network, offering breathtaking views and varied terrain.
  1. Three Sisters Peaks: Embark on a scenic helicopter tour over the iconic Three Sisters Peaks for a bird’s-eye view of the stunning landscape.
  2. Canmore Cave Tours: Embark on an underground adventure and explore the fascinating limestone caves of Canmore.

 Kananaskis Country: Nature’s Playground

  1. Overview: Situated just west of Calgary, Kananaskis Country boasts stunning alpine scenery, pristine lakes, and ample recreational opportunities. It’s an outdoor enthusiast’s paradise.
  2.  Top Experiences:
  1. Spray Valley Provincial Park: Discover a plethora of activities, including hiking, fishing, camping, and wildlife spotting in this scenic park.
  2. Nakiska Ski Resort: Hit the slopes at Nakiska, a world-class ski resort renowned for its Olympic pedigree and stunning mountain vistas.
  3. Kananaskis Nordic Spa: Unwind and rejuvenate at the luxurious Kananaskis Nordic Spa, offering a range of soothing treatments amidst serene mountain surroundings.

 Drumheller: Unearthing Prehistoric Wonders

  1. Overview: Step back in time and venture to Drumheller, a town known as the “Dinosaur Capital of the World.” Explore unique geological formations and uncover fascinating dinosaur fossils.
  2. Key Attractions:

  1. Royal Tyrrell Museum: Delve into the world of dinosaurs at the renowned Royal Tyrrell Museum, home to an impressive collection of fossils and interactive exhibits.
  2. Hoodoos: Witness the peculiar hoodoos, towering rock formations shaped by erosion, and enjoy stunning panoramic views of the Badlands.
  3. Badlands Hiking Trails: Embark on scenic hikes through the unique Badlands landscape, marveling at its otherworldly beauty.

 Waterton Lakes National Park: A Hidden Gem

  1. Overview: Journey to Waterton Lakes National Park, a hidden gem nestled in the Rocky Mountains. This peaceful and pristine park offers breathtaking landscapes and abundant wildlife.
  2. Notable Sights:

  1. Red Rock Canyon: Admire the vibrant red rock formations and take a leisurely stroll along the canyon’s edge.
  2. Waterton Village: Explore the charming village, visit quaint shops, and indulge in delicious local cuisine.
  3. Crypt Lake Trail: Challenge yourself with a hike along the renowned Crypt Lake Trail, known for its stunning scenery and exhilarating adventure.

 Weekend Getaways From Calgary

If you have more time, there are also many great weekend getaways that you can take from Calgary. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Yoho National Park: Yoho National Park is located just next to Banff National Park. It is home to the dramatic Takakkaw Falls, as well as the Emerald Lake. Yoho National Park is a great place to go hiking, camping, and fishing.
  • Jasper National Park: Jasper National Park is the largest national park in the Canadian Rockies. It is home to stunning mountains, glaciers, and lakes. Jasper National Park is a great place to go hiking, camping, and fishing.
  • Lake Minnewanka: Lake Minnewanka is a beautiful lake located in Banff National Park. It is a great place to go boating, fishing, and swimming. Lake Minnewanka is also a popular spot for photographers.
  • Radium Hot Springs: Radium Hot Springs is a town located about 3 hours from Calgary. It is home to a variety of hot springs, as well as hiking trails, golf courses, and restaurants. Radium Hot Springs is a great place to relax and soak in the natural beauty of the Canadian Rockies.


From the majestic peaks of Banff National Park to the prehistoric wonders of Drumheller, Calgary serves as an excellent starting point for unforgettable day trips and weekend getaways. Whether you seek adventure, relaxation, or awe-inspiring natural beauty, the surrounding areas offer a diverse range of experiences to suit every traveler. Embark on your next adventure beyond Calgary and create memories that will last a lifetime.

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