Crazy About Calgary

by : Jim Brown

Calgary, Canada seems like any other large city in the northern part of North America. The skyline is peppered with skyscrapers, metropolitan travel buses drive the streets, and the city even boasts a futuristic needle tower were tourists can ride an elevator over 100 stories to look out upon the city and a river nearby. Oddly enough this well-developed city is usually known for its western flare.

The Calgary Stampede, a famous wild West show and rodeo, is held in the city every year and Western style from jeans to cowboy hats can be seen even in the most sophisticated businesses. Beyond its wild west outlook and its big-city charm Calgary offers nature lovers some stunning examples of the natural landscape of western Canada.

Devonian Gardens

One of the largest indoor gardens in the world, the Devonian Gardens indoor park is located in central downtown Calgary. Taking three floors at the top of a mall, the garden features several thousand types of flowers, pools of water and calming fountains. Tourists from around the world as well as businesspeople who work in the mall itself come to the gardens to meet, rest, relax and read. The gardens are free of charge and are available to be booked for weddings or special events are similar to be enjoyed as an amazing natural exhibition in the heart of a large city.

Olympic Park

The Canada Olympic Park was built for the 1988 Olympic games held in Calgary Canada. Instead of letting this park fester after use, it was revitalized into a multipurpose competition training, and fun center to be used year-round by the general public. The Olympic rings and structure still remain however the ice rink and skating venues are used to train current Olympic hopefuls who will allow you to come in and watch their practice. Olympic Park also features one of the main training centers for luge. The ski slopes and Olympic Tower are used for skiing in the winter and BMX extreme bicycle sports in the summer. Bicycle rentals are available as well as training and tours.

Banff National Park

Slightly north of Olympic Park is one of the most stunning glacial beauties in all of North America, Banff National Park. The park offers trails for cycling, hiking, mountaineering and facilities for skiing, fishing, kayaking and simply picnicking. The waters, fed by a glacial lake, are clear and vibrant. Banff also features a surrounding countryside of wineries and plays host to both sporting competitions and wine and art festivals. The winters are extremely cold; however the summer offers beautiful mild temperatures and sunlight that lasts well into the evening. Birdwatchers will delight in the myriad of species found in the park and photographers will enjoy the natural setting as the park has photography booths set up around the facilities to enable them to make the most of their craft.

In the heart of the biggest city can be a beautiful garden. No city displays that truth more wonderfully than Calgary, Canada.