Calgary is a vibrant city, with thriving food, music and sports scenes, and is located less than an hour's drive from Canmore and Banff in the Canadian Rockies. Symposium participants will want to plan on finishing their weekend in Calgary, or on spending a lot more time in town before or after the conference.
Within a 10-minute walk of the Hyatt Regency, symposium participants can visit the Glenbow Museum, the Calgary Tower.
The Calgary Tower offers a stunning 360° view of the city with two observation decks, a cocktail lounge and a rotating restaurant. Reservations for the restaurant are recommended.
The Glenbow Museum, Western Canada's largest museum, is an eclectic hodgepodge of contemporary art, history, pop culture, anthropology and geology. A discovery centre features hands-on art projects for children.
For those interested in shopping, Fleuvog Shoes, Winners, Harry Rosen, Holt Renfrew and the shops of the CORE Shopping Centre are located just to the west of the hotel. Local restaurants and bars include Catch, the Bank and Baron Pub, the Palomino Smokehouse, Charcut, The Guild and the Divino Wine and Cheese Bistro.
Outside the Downtown Core
For those willing to travel, by cab, transit or a much longer walk, the Calgary Zoo, the Telus Spark science centre, the StudioBell National Music Centre, the Bow Habitat Station, Fort Calgary and the Skyline Luge at the Olympic Plaza will entertain the family.
The Calgary Zoo features African, Asian and South American wildlife and features a large exhibit of animals indigenous to Canada. Other destinations include a pengiun pool, prehistoric park simulating life in the age of the dinosaurs and a conservatory.
The science centre includes exhibits on the human body, the geology of Alberta, energy and fossil fuels, the natural world and audiovisual media. Children will enjoy the live science demos, the creative kids museum and the Brainasium, an amazing outdoor adventure space.
The Bow Habitat Station lets vistors investigate, explore and discover Alberta’s fish, wildlife, water and aquatic ecosystems. Visitors can explore hands-on exhibits in the Discovery Centre, feed the fish on a tour of the station's fish hatchery, go fishing in a trout pond, and take a stroll along the trails in the interpretive wetland.
The National Music Centre is located just outside the downtown core and features five floors of exhibitions that tell the story of music in Canada and celebrate music icons in the Canadian Halls of Fame. Vistors can rock out with the Centre's interactive instrument installations and sing along in its sound booths. Check out the restored King Eddy Hotel and take a peek at the famed Rolling Stones Mobile Studio.
Fort Calgary is a national historic site and is also located just outside the downtown core. Fort Calgary's exhibits tell the story of the arrival of the Northwest Mounted Police, the building of the fort and the development of Calgary as a community.
For those looking for an adrenaline rush, Skyline Luge, located in the Calgary Olympic Park, is sure to satisfy. The luge is a unique wheeled gravity ride that provides riders full control over their descent on a purpose built track. Experience 1.8 kilometres of twists and turns dropping over 100 metres in its course.
A one- to one-and-a-half-hour drive will take you to Canmore and Banff, beautiful towns nestled on the doorstep of the Canadian Rockies, and to Drumheller, in the Alberta badlands, home of the Royal Tyrrell Museum. Other destinations with easy driving distance include the Bar U Ranch, a national historic site preserving a cattle ranch established in the 1800s in the days of the open range, and the Eau Clair Distillery in Turner Valley, a craft distillery producing vodkas, gins and whiskeys.
Banff and Canmore are located along Highway 1, west of Calgary. Both are surrounded by mountains and offer plenty of dining and shopping opportunities. Canmore is home to a worthwhile museum and geoscience centre. Banff's attractions include open-air hot springs operated by Parks Canada year round, and a gondola trip to the top of Sulphur Mountain which offers stunning views of the local geography.
Drumheller is an historic town lying to the east and north of Calgary in the Red Deer River valley. It is home to some of Western Canada's most dramatic hoodoos, the not-to-be-missed world's largest dinosaur and the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology. The Royal Tyrrell is Canada’s only museum dedicated exclusively to the science of palaeontology. In addition to housing one of the world’s largest displays of dinosaurs, the museum offers a wide variety of creative, fun, and educational programs that bring the prehistoric past to life.
More to See and Do
For more information, visit the websites of Tourism Calgary and Calgary Attractions. Tourism Calgary has helpful links and tips for getting around Calgary. Calgary Attractions offers coupons as well as a helpful interactive map of the city.
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