It’s no secret, we like the Calgary Zoo! We’ve written about it a few times, each with new information, because the place is just plain awesome. My husband, kiddo and I headed to the zoo last week and spent 5 solid hours traversing one of Calgary’s most popular family destinations. We think there’s a million reasons why you would want to visit the zoo, but here’s my top must sees.
Alberta is BREWING (haha puns) over with craft breweries across the province. You may have heard of some of the bigger ones such as Yellowhead Brewery, Alley Cat or Grisly Paw, but there are hundreds of microbreweries making tasty delicious beer. There are now “…more than 125 existing and pending licenses” for independent craft brewers in Alberta.
“Alberta farmers grow some of the world’s most sought after barley and agricultural products. It only makes sense to grow the brewing industry right here and support good jobs from grain to glass,” said Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci
It would take a LONG time to track all these breweries down and taste the hoppy goodness, and thus enter in brewery tours. Brewery tours will take you to about 3-4 breweries and you’ll get the chance to talk to the brewmaster and sample some of the best of Alberta.
When your province is a winter wonderland (let’s go with that) 6 months a year there’s plenty of opportunities to enjoy winter festivals! Festivals around the province have a component for families too, but often make a great opportunity for date night! Here are our top picks for winter festivals with your family in 2019
Awesome Alberta Winter Festivals and Activities 2019
Summer is over but it doesn’t mean that the festival season has stopped in Alberta. Fall is a season of all things, pumpkins and harvest and you can get all that and more with these 5 fall festivals in Alberta. So, grab your latte, pull on your wellies and lets get exploring.
Jasper Dark Sky Festival
When: October 12-21
Where: Jasper, Alberta
Events: Schedule of Events can be found on the Dark Sky website
Did you know that in 2011 Jasper was designated a Dark Sky Reserve, by the Royal Astronomical Society “due to its limited light pollution that creates ideal conditions for dark sky viewing” (source)
Jasper National Park is one of 17 designated Dark Sky Preserves in Canada. We are the second largest Dark Sky Preserve in the world, and we are the largest accessible Dark Sky Preserve – meaning there’s a town within the limits of the preserve. – Jasper Dark Sky Festival
Not your typical ‘fall festival’ there are no farms, pumpkins but the dark sky festival is unlike any other you’ll attend this fall. With both free and paid events, attendees will have the opportunity to listen to world famous scientists, astronauts, go star gazing or take photography workshops. Plus… you’re in Jasper and there are lots to do with the family while you’re there as we’ve written about before (tips for staying in Jasper inexpensively are here, for food with kids click here).
Cute animals, food and local breweries and that’s just the start of Alberta Open Farm Days.
On August 18 and 19 all Albertans are invited to join their rural neighbours to learn how your food gets from the farm to your table at Alberta Open Farm Days.
What you need to know
Admission: FREE with the exception of the Culinary events.
Location: All across Alberta
When: August 18 & 19
What: Three types of events: Culinary and Farm Tours.
On a recent family trip to visit Drumheller, we made the best decision and took the slight detour off of Hwy 56 to visit the Rowley, Alberta…the ghost town.
Located between the towns of Big Valley and Munson, about 5 Km down a gravel road, the town has a current population of approx. 10 people and is considered abandoned.
The setting for several movies (including Bye,Bye blues, Pelican Brief, Legends of the Fall), the bulk of the buildings can be found on the main street. Stop in at the town office to take advantage of the free, though tips are greatly appreciated, tours that are offered and get you access into all the buildings. Tours run from 10-6 every day in July and August. Our guide Brayden was fantastic, he was very knowledgeable and offered lots of interesting facts as we made our way through town, and super patient with the kids who asked about a million questions as kids tend to do.
The kids loved exploring the train station (operational from 1925-1965) and old garage with vintage cars. Another kids favorite was the old school house. A really great feature in the old school is that every desk is seated a plush doll with a nameplate of a person who actually attended the school when it was operational.
There are lots of antiquities to be found as you go through the buildings including a bible from 1871 in the church and a large printing press that was used between 1900-1920, that is housed in its own separate building.
Another great bonus is the large covered picnic area and playground located in the middle of town. We were also pleasantly surprised to learn the town offers free no hook up camping on site if you’re planning on staying in the area. While still being fairly central to all the main attractions in the area it’s a great alternative to paying for camping as long as you don’t require all the frills of a power/water site. If you happen to be there on the last Saturday of the month be sure to check out pizza night held in the still functioning salon.
A must stop attraction whether you’re traveling with or without kids. Would definitely recommend going if you are anywhere in the area. We would go back in a heartbeat.
Born and raised in Edmonton, Amanda is a single mom to a fantastic 8-year-old daughter and works full time in emergency services. She has great fondness for all things old and abandoned and can be found camera in hand whenever she has a spare minute.