Family Fun

Overview

From family-friendly thrills like the Calgary Zoo and amusement parks to more cerebral pursuits like historical sites and museums, Calgary – and the area around it – has seemingly countless places perfect for spending some quality time.

Admission costs are generally low, and most places are open seven days a week. Check out our expansive list of fun, engaging and educational places to visit.

Attractions

When it comes to attractions and activities for families, Calgary has plenty of engaging and educational places to visit. While your kids are sure to enjoy all of the following sites, adults will have fun too.

Here are some of the more popular family-friendly attractions:

  • Calaway Park is western Canada’s largest outdoor family amusement park, located just west of Calgary
  • The Calgary Tower is the city’s most famous and recognizable landmark a 191-metre observation tower with the highest 360 degree observation deck in the world
  • The Calgary Zoo is Canada’s #1 Zoo, rated by TripAdvisor
  • Canada Olympic Park is a year-round sports and tourist attraction with ski runs, biking trails, a zip line and more 
 

More Attractions

Here are some of the more popular family-friendly attractions:

  • Calgary Corn Maze is great for kids, with a puzzling maze, petting zoo and pumpkin patch  
  • Fort Calgary Historic Park is where Calgary got its start, and today offers visitors the chance to explore the city’s history
  • Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump is a UNESCO World Heritage Site south of Calgary with a museum of Blackfoot First Nation culture
  • Heritage Park is Canada’s largest living historical village
  • Spruce Meadows is a world-class showjumping venue in southwest Calgary
  • TELUS Spark, Calgary's newest science centre, has exhibits and programs to ignite a sense of wonder and excitement – check out their adult-only nights!
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Museums

Most Visited

From art to frontier history, from sports to paleontology, the Calgary area has an impressive roster of museums:

  • Canada's Sports Hall of Fame is dedicated to preserving and celebrating Canada's impressive sports history
  • The Glenbow Museum is Calgary’s darling of the museum world, with impressive world-class touring exhibits as well as a permanent collection of local and international pieces
  • The Military Museums enable visitors to experience the victories, tragedies and sacrifices of the Canadian Forces
  • The National Music Centre is an amazing collection of musical instruments and artifacts
  • The Royal Tyrrell Museum is the T-Rex of the area’s museums, with thousands of fossils that bear witness to the region’s ancient history
 

More Museums

The list goes on... 

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Calgary Zoo

Overview

For over 80 years, the world-class Calgary Zoo has offered visitors from around the world the opportunity to experience and interact with wildlife right in the heart of Calgary, only five minutes from the downtown core.

Western Canada’s largest accredited zoo has over 170 different species and over 1,000 animals, including the Penguin Plunge, endangered creatures like the Siberian tiger and western lowland gorilla. Many animals from North America are featured in the zoo’s Canadian Wilds section, with ecosystems representing northern forests and the Rocky Mountains. The zoo also includes 2.5 hectares of botanical gardens, as well as volcano and sandstone hoodoos as part of the environment surrounding life-size dinosaur models in the Prehistoric Park, which recreates the Mesozoic period.

Hours

The Calgary Zoo is open every day except Christmas Day and can be reached off of Memorial Drive NW, just west of downtown.

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Calgary Public Library

Overview

The Calgary Public Library (CPL) is a distributed library system featuring 18 branch locations, including the Central Library, that's served the public since 1912. The branch locations are as follows:

  • Alexander Calhoun Library
  • Bowness Library
  • Central Library
  • Country Hills Library
  • Crowfoot Library
  • Fish Creek Library
  • Forest Lawn Library
  • Glenmore Square Library
  • Louise Riley Library
  • Memorial Park Library
  • Nose Hill Library
  • Saddletowne Library
  • Shaganappi Library
  • Shawnessy Library
  • Signal Hill Library
  • Southwood Library
  • Thorn-hill Library
  • Village Square Library

In efforts to further people's opportunity to grow, learn and prosper, the Calgary Public Library, along with financial support from the Library Foundation has moved to free Library cards in 2015 to help ensure all can access and utilize the Library wealth of resources and to help unlock their potential.

Coming 2018: New Central Library

Calgary's revamped Central Library will be located one block east of City Hall in the trendy downtown neighbourhood of East Village. 

The new Central Library will inspire Calgary's growing population with 240,000 sq ft of usable library space - 66% more than the existing Central Public Library. With a focus on building a multi-faceted family destination and gathering place, the new Central Library will open minds to potential and opportunity.

For more information on the new Central Library Project, visit CMLC's website.

 

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