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Best Local History & Culture in Calgary

By: Cityseeker
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Chinese Artifacts Museum

The Chinese Artifacts Museum is located within the Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre, an entity aimed at celebrating and promoting Chinese culture in Calgary. The museum houses recreations of the various kinds of antiques. Visitors can marvel at the various life size exhibits like a majestic chariot connected to horses along with soldiers made of terra-cota. Immerse yourself in the handicraft items on display like the beautiful wooden objects, the porcelain and ceramic items and the texture and design of the elegant royal robes. This museum will leave you awestruck with the rich history that the Chinese locals in Calgary have on offer.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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The Grain Academy Museum

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.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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Glenbow Museum

One of Canada's great museums and Western Canada's largest, this treasure trove houses artifacts of the west, dating back to the first white settlers of the 1800s and the history of the area's First Nations. Visitors can take delight in exhibits that delve into the history of the region and its people, celebrating their lifestyles and art, and also that record contemporary life in western Canada. Along with permanent displays, the Glenbow Museum presents a variety of temporary exhibitions. Visitors also explore an art gallery and archives on site.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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Fort Calgary

Fort Calgary gives visitors a hands-on look at early Calgary life. Fort Calgary lies on 16 hectares (40 acres) of riverside park. The interpretive center reconstructs the original 1875 fort, a facility North-West Mounted Police built after being dispatched from the settled east to establish law and order among pioneers, and to stop the culturally devastating whiskey trade. Children will love trying on the officers uniforms that have been laid out, and exploring the interiors of the old prison. Visitors can grab a bite, or indeed a shot of whiskey at The Deane House, the on-site restaurant.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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Lougheed House

Built in 1891 for Senator Lougheed and family, this beautiful sandstone mansion was once a political hub. Today, the house and its surrounding gardens have been restored and preserved to the original grandeur by the Lougheed House Conservation Society. Visitors can enjoy a tour of the house and gardens then grab a bite to eat at the on-site restaurant. The gift shop offers unique items that help support the historic home and make for great souvenirs.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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The Hangar Flight Museum

The Aero Space Museum Of Calgary offers an up-close look at Calgary's place in aviation history through aviation memorabilia and military aircraft displays, including a Lancaster, a Sopwith Tri-Plane and a Harvard Mark. Visitors can participate in interesting quizzes which challenge their knowledge about the museum. Children can participate in these or engage themselves in materials that can e enlightening. On Thursdays, this museum sees an influx of guests for their 'ASMAC Movie Night' where they broadcast documentaries like 'Real Stuff', 'Snowbirds 25th Anniversary' and 'The Dam Busters (1954)'.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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The Military Museums

For those interested in war trivia and collectibles, visit this museum, one of the largest military museum in Western Canada. Stocked with artillery, planes and fine examples of the Canadian war effort, it includes many interesting rarities and artifacts. Stop by the gift shop and purchase a memento after a tour through the comfortable and well-appointed rooms. In 2007, new construction added a range of attractions, such as the relocated Naval Museum of Alberta, Air Force Museum, expanded archives, an art gallery, and Military History and Strategic Studies Center of Excellence. The museum also offers research facilities in cooperation with the University of Calgary as well as a range of lectures and educational programs. The museum relies heavily on community support to keep in operation, so cash donations can be placed in the drum located at the front entrance.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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Naval Museum of Alberta

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.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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Heritage Park Historical Village

Heritage Park Historical Village, one of Canada's largest historical villages, is divided into a pioneer Northwest Mounted Police outpost and a Main Street from 1910. The latter has a working antique amusement park, with rides that are safe even for small children. Other attractions include a working full-scale locomotive thundering through the park, and on the nearby Glenmore Reservoir, a vintage double-decker stern wheeler ship that takes visitors on lake cruises. Shops and restaurants are plentiful in the park, including a turn-of-the-century bakery. All park staff work in costume and character. Entertaining events for the whole family are scheduled year-round, including September's Fall Fair. Check the website for a full list of events and detailed admission fees.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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Gasoline Alley Museum

Take a walk down history and explore the impact that the automobile industry had on Canada's social and cultural progress at the Gasoline Alley Museum, located within Heritage Park. Children can enjoy the simulated driving experience with the 'road trip games' or listen to the fantastic tales of their favorite cartoon characters at the 'Story Time' session held every Tuesday. The museum also houses various attractions like a 'drive-in theater' from the 1970s or a service station straight from the 1930s, that will be enjoyed by children and adults alike. Those crazy about cars will love their vintage collection which has been restored to look as good as new. Entrance to the museum is included with admission to Heritage Park.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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Canada's Sports Hall of Fame

Get a glimpse of the the fierce pride Canada has in its athletes at this informative museum. Located within the Canada Olympic Park, this facility aims at inculcating the significance of sports among people. The establishment of this Hall of Fame can be attributed to the works of Harry Price, the former chairman of the Sports Committee for the Canadian National Exhibition. This hall features galleries that commemorate 58 different sports. Visitors can immerse themselves in various water sports at the 'Splash Gallery', enter the boxing ring at the 'Contact Gallery' or glide through snow at the 'Glide Gallery'. Every gallery houses exhibits that enable the visitor to enter the sportsman's shoes, offering them a unique learning experience.

Calgary, AB, Canada
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