Sightseeing in Calgary/Edmonton

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  • Jun 7th, 2012 7:09 am
Deal Fanatic
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Mar 24, 2004
8683 posts

Sightseeing in Calgary/Edmonton

Hey All,

Wanna plan a week or two trip to Calgary/Edmonton. Thinking of flying to Calgary, rent a car to hit Lake Louise, Jasper, Edmonton, then back to Calgary.

Goal is primarily sightseeing, the lady LOVES the breathtaking views.

Main attraction would be Lake Louise and Jasper National Park; but wouldn't mind spending a few nights in both Calgary/Edmonton too. I'm hyped for the West Edmonton Mall lol.

We're not super athletic, so we wouldn't be able to do hardcore trails. But we'd like to spend a couple days walking, taking in the wilderness. Maybe canoeing. I've heard there are horseback rides through scenic trails. We'd love to bathe in the hot springs. If we could spend a couple nights "in the wilderness", maybe in log cabins; far enough away from the city to have a clear view of the starry night; that'd be perfect :)

Outdoorsy yet romantic vacation.

Any advice as to how we should plan this? Must sees? Hidden Gems along the way?

4 replies
Sr. Member
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Nov 28, 2005
921 posts
There is nothing in Calgary to do.
Rent a truck / suv. From discount. $30/day
Head down to crows nest pass and travel to Banff through the mtns
Google map it. Hwy40 kanaskis trail- spray trail to Canmore .
It's a dirt road hwy. but the views are awesome. But a truck is recommended

While in canmore, hike up chinamans peak, relatively easy hike, 2-3 hr up
The drive to the trail is awesome. You drive half way up, so that's why it's a easy hike
Mar 2, 2009
27 posts
1 upvote
There are all types of hikes in the Banff/Jasper Parks. Everything from leisurely walks to full back country adventures. There are a lot of nice day hikes. Lots of info on the web. Here's one to get started with:

Not sure if you want to head down to the Crowsnest Pass as the previous poster mentioned as it heads towards Fernie in S.E. BC so it's a ways out of the Banff park but Hwy 40 does take you into Canmore from the south but it's a much longer drive. Canmore's about 1/2 hour west of Calgary on the main Hwy 1 and just outside of the Banff Park gates. The town of Banff is pretty busy whereas Lake Louise is much quieter but smaller. The drive up the Icefield Parkway between Lake Louise and Jasper is great.

Edmonton is further away from the Banff/Jasper parks but the WestEdmonton mall is a neat place to visit. There's also the Royal Tyrell Museum (Dinosaurs) in Drumheller (about 1 1/2 hours NE of Calgary) if your looking for something different and you'll see some of the badland type geography in the area.
Deal Expert
Aug 2, 2001
16228 posts
Don't forget about Banff! There are some interesting things to see and do in that area of Alberta like the Columbia Icefields and that. In Banff there is the Gondola to take you to the top of Sulfur Mountain, which should have some good views.

As for Edmonton/Calgary I personally don't think there are a lot of tourist attractions. Depending on when you are going you might hit the Calgary Stampede, Edmonton Capital Ex or the Edmonton Indy Race. In addition Edmonton has a great Street Performers Festival and Fringe (if you're into live theatre, buskers, etc.) in the summer. Edmonton has the Mall, River Valley System (largest in North America I believe) and a new Art Gallery. But not sure that stuff would appeal to someone from a larger city.