If you are on a budget or want to get away from the crowds: don't worry, Calgary has you covered. With vast swathes of pristine green space within the city, you have plenty of spots to explore. Growing up in Calgary, one of the regular outdoor activities we would do was heading down to Fish Creek Park for hours. We would build forts in the trees with deadfall, splash in the water catching tadpoles, toss a ball or frisbee, and finish with a hotdog roast over a fire. We would spend hours riding our bikes in and out of the trees and get lost in paths we've never explored before. Places like this litter our incredible city, and each one has its own unique flavour and is worth exploring.
Here are a few of our most absolute favourites to check out:
Fish Creek Provincial Park: The 2nd largest urban park in Canada at 14km2. With several entrances, miles of walking paths, dozens of picnic areas, this place has everything you could want. Great biking trails and loads of firepits and barbecue grills to use. Enjoy the sun, sand, and water at the man-made Sikome lake on those hot summer days!
Bowness Park: Always busy, it's not hard to see why. Nestled up against the Bow river, this centrally-located area is great for a picnic, or a wander through the woods, or skipping stones across the Bow. The city has invested millions of dollars recently into this park and it now includes a large splash park and a beautiful restaurant that overlooks the lagoon where you can canoe and paddle boat in the summer and spend hours skating in the winter.
Nose Hill: At 11 square km's, this park is massive, with miles of walking & biking trails through grassland, wooded area, and hills. You will often spot small groups of white-tailed deer roaming, and the occasional coyote pacing through the brush. One thing is always guaranteed: amazing views of the city and, on clear days, the beautiful Rocky Mountains.
North & South Glenmore park: With the calm and picturesque Glenmore Reservoir as a backdrop, enjoy open green spaces, playgrounds and picnic areas for a family afternoon. Or take your bike and enjoy a beautiful ride on paved paths around the entire reservoir.
Each of these parks in our city is a true treasure that you need to explore. Get outside and enjoy the city you live in today!