With great sights and fun activities throughout the year, there really is no ‘bad’ time to visit Canada’s fourth largest city. If your travel dates are flexible and you are looking for the cheapest flights to Calgary, avoid peak times and holidays when national and international flights are in high demand. The city experiences a surge in visitors during the Calgary Stampede in July, national holidays, and Christmas holidays. If you need to travel during these periods, book your flights and accommodation early to avoid disappointment. If you want to save on travel fares, book domestic flights outside of these times for the best deals.
Travelers have four options for domestic flights to Calgary (YYC): Air Canada, WestJet, Air North, and Central Mountain Air have flights scheduled regularly. Other airlines reaching YYC include Sunwing Airlines, Air Transat, Alaska Airlines, Delta Airlines, United Airlines, and American Airlines. A variety of routes are available and direct flights from major cities, including Toronto and Vancouver, run multiple times a day.
Once you have arrived in Calgary, getting to the city centre is easy. Transit operates an express Route 300 and Routes 100 and 430 to and from Calgary International Airport (YYC). Buses run from 5:00 am until midnight. Check the schedule for exact times. If you are arriving at the Domestic terminal, head across the road on the Arrivals Level to Bus Bay 7 or 8 for bus routes into the city. Pay with coins on the bus or find ticket vending machines at Bus Bay 7. Machines accept debit, credit, and coins. You can also purchase boarding passes at Mac’s Convenience Stores on the Arrivals Level of the terminal. If you arrive at the International terminal, make your way to the curb outside the Arrivals Level for Bus Bay 32.
There are different options for getting around Calgary and each offers its own benefits.
Calgary Transit connects major attractions and accommodation through a network of buses and the CTrain (LRT) system. If you are staying and playing in the downtown core, the CTrain offers a Free Fare Zone that allows you to hop on and off free of charge between 10 stations along 7th Avenue SW.
Rental cars provide a fast, flexible option for drivers with a valid license. Certain age restrictions may apply to different vehicle types. Check for special deals on weekends and ask about promotions.
Taxis and Uber rides also offer a fast way to explore the city, but they come with a higher price tag. Regulated taxi rates are approximately $12 CAD per 5 kilometres. Surge pricing during rush hour and events like the Stampede can drive up costs, so confirm the rate beforehand.
Whether you travel to escape into nature or prefer exploring new cities, scenic views and a young urban population make Calgary a great destination year-round. The city is home to a blossoming food scene, happening nightlife, and interactive historical museums. With the awe-inspiring Canadian Rockies just a short drive away, Calgary is the perfect place to base yourself as you explore Western Canada’s gorgeous national parks and natural splendour. 4 seasons with widely ranging temperatures, and more than 120 spoken languages combine for a diverse city that is full of energy. Get your shopping fix with options that range from markets selling unique local handicrafts to malls housing international brands. Visit Heritage Park Historical Village for a fun lesson in local history that lets you step back into the 1900s. Afterwards, explore some of the local breweries for a taste of Cowtown and kick off a night out at one of the many varied hot spots. From country music to electronic dance parties, there is no shortage of options in the city for a full itinerary at any time of the year.
There is no better time to see the city’s spark and culture on display than during the 10-day Calgary Stampede. The world’s largest rodeo features events from day to night, including concerts, First Nations exhibits, chuck wagon races, shows, and more. There’s something for guests of all ages to enjoy under the July summer sun. More than 1 million visitors attend each year, so book your flight to Calgary early.
Hikes and Walking Trails
If you would rather skip the crowds, why not bundle up during the chilly months and take on the hiking trails just outside the city? The Canada Olympic Park provides the chance to try luge and other winter sports, or hit the slopes for a variety of fun winter activities. The nearby Kananaskis Country area marks the front ranges of the Canadian Rockies and makes for a perfect daytrip or longer city escape. Keep your eyes peeled for roaming wildlife, including elk and more than 130 species of birds. Don’t miss relaxing in the hot springs and taking in the brilliant blue of Lake Louise.