Winding its way from the Rocky Mountains all the way to the Alberta foothills, Bow River is an expansive waterway. Along its route, the river passes through Calgary and the river banks are a popular outdoor recreation spot for the city dwellers. Many walking paths and scenic vistas can be found along the river. Outdoor sports enthusiasts can find kayak rentals, fly fishing options, cycling tracks and much more. Deer, great horned owls, and beavers have been spotted along Bow River.
Built with a lot of thought and a significant amount of resources and time, TELUS Spark is a purpose-built facility designed to elicit curiosity and facilitate innovation in children and adults alike. The sprawling facility is divided into various sections and features tons of interactive exhibits, presentations as well as activities aimed at making science as interesting as possible. From the Prototype Lab, where new ideas are tested with inputs from visitors, to the 'Being Human' section where visitors can truly understand what it means to be human, there's a distinct freshness to this center which differentiates it from other such facilities. The 'Digital Dome Theatre' renders a rich audio-visual experience, and the various shows should not be missed here. The exhibits span all age groups, so there's something for everyone.
The New Gallery, popularly known as TNG, serves as a home for contemporary art and artists. Managed by various artists, the gallery supports and promotes up-and-coming talent and diversity in arts through performances and exhibitions. The works displayed revolve around socio-cultural themes and aim at eliciting a critical thought among visitors which could lead to thought provoking discussions. The first Thursday of the month is popular among visitors as the gallery is open till 9p, with special exhibits.
The Naval Museum of Alberta exists to "perpetuate the memory of men and women who have served in the Royal Canadian Navy" since its inception in 1910. The facility is Canada's largest naval museum and has been operating in Calgary since 1988. A number of interesting and exciting artifacts are on exhibition, including three beautifully restored 'Second World War wheelhouse', intricate ship models, several gun mountings and a periscope, which is always popular with the kids. Unique gifts are available in the gift shop; books, pins, badges and clothing. The museum offers special tours for schools, groups or individuals at exceptional rates.
The Contemporary Calgary aims at promoting contemporary art, craft, design and architecture. The museum's decor is kept simple, thus focusing mainly on the showcased art. Visitors can enjoy unique exhibits like Marcel Van Eden's 'The Lone Lake Murders'. Art enthusiasts also get an opportunity to participate in the lectures and discussions held by prominent personalities. Besides the art shows, guests are entertained by musical performances and other. To sum it up, the gallery ensures a thorough visual treat!
From the Nose Hill Park, the view of Calgary is incomparable. Visitors may have to exert a bit of effort to hike up a gentle slope to the top of the hill, but once at the top, the view makes it all worth it. The top of the hill affords a 360-degree view spanning the Rocky Mountains, with the skyscrapers of downtown rising out of the Bow River Valley and the prairie stretching off to the east. The surrounding long-grass prairie offers glimpses of the local wildlife, as numerous deer, jackrabbits and red-tailed hawks can often be seen in this area.
The Wonderland Sculpture is a 12 meter tall (39 feet) art installation, which graces the plaza in front of the iconic Bow building. The sculpture is a bent-wire head of a woman named Wonderland, which causes quite a stir among those who pass by. The sculpture has a small entrance in its neck so that curious viewers can wander through and see what it looks like from the inside. It is a creation of -renowned sculptor Jaume Plensa and was commissioned by the Encana Corporation in a joint program with Cenovus Energy.
The Grain Academy Museum has been educating visitors about Canada's grains since 1981. This museum give its visitors an in-depth knowledge into the production, transportation and trade of grains. The exhibits replicate the whole interesting process, right from harvesting of grains to the delivery of grains at various stores. Visitors can try their hands at various interactive models, and browse through the rare artifacts, photos and videos that celebrate the farmer's pride.
Gainsborough Galleries stocks a lot of artwork that is symbolic of Alberta and the Prairies. The works offered here are of high caliber, making them likely to become treasured heirlooms. They carry beautiful bronze sculptures of buffaloes and cowboys as well as a number of wooden sculptures of cattle and horses. There is also an array of Alberta prints depicting local and regional mountain themes and scenes, as well as a number of interesting landscape paintings. Check website for further details on upcoming exhibits.
The Plus 15 Skyway network is a simply amazing network of skywalks across the city of Calgary. Designed by Harold Hanen, this award winning pedestrian system is 18 kilometers (11 miles) long and some 15 ft. (4.5 meters) above ground level. Effortlessly connecting the city, these walkways have been existing since 1970 and continue to do so.
Bow Valley College is nestled in the downtown region of Calgary, and also has branches in Banff, Drumheller, Medicine Hat and other cities. For courses offered and admissions schedule, check website.