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Hit the Road: Exciting Road Trips from Calgary

Posted on 22 May, 2023 at 09:21 am - by Sarah Johnson

Exciting Road Trips from Calgary

Calgary's strategic location makes it an excellent starting point for memorable road trips to explore the natural wonders and charming destinations in and around Alberta. Whether you're seeking breathtaking mountain views, serene lakes, or quaint towns, these road trips from Calgary offer a perfect blend of adventure and exploration. So, buckle up and get ready to hit the road on these exciting journeys.


Jasper National Park and the Icefields Parkway

Embark on a scenic road trip from Calgary to Jasper National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its stunning landscapes and abundant wildlife. Drive along the famous Icefields Parkway, considered one of the most beautiful drives in the world. Marvel at towering glaciers, turquoise lakes, and cascading waterfalls as you make your way through the heart of the Canadian Rockies. Don't miss the opportunity to visit the Columbia Icefield, where you can step onto the Athabasca Glacier and take a guided tour of this icy wonderland.


Waterton Lakes National Park

Head south from Calgary to Waterton Lakes National Park, a hidden gem nestled in the Rocky Mountains. Known for its rugged beauty and diverse wildlife, Waterton Lakes offers breathtaking views, scenic hiking trails, and opportunities for boating and wildlife spotting. Make sure to visit the iconic Prince of Wales Hotel, perched on a hilltop overlooking Upper Waterton Lake, for panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and prairies.


Dinosaur Provincial Park and Drumheller

Travel east from Calgary to explore the prehistoric wonders of Dinosaur Provincial Park and the town of Drumheller. Dinosaur Provincial Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site where you can join guided tours and discover dinosaur fossils, visit the interpretive center, and hike through the stunning badlands. In Drumheller, explore the Royal Tyrrell Museum, one of the world's leading dinosaur museums, and take a stroll through the unique Hoodoos, towering rock formations that create an otherworldly landscape.


Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump and the Cowboy Trail

Discover Alberta's rich Indigenous history and cowboy culture by heading south along the Cowboy Trail. Visit the Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that preserves the archaeological remains of a buffalo hunting method used by Indigenous peoples for thousands of years. Continue your journey along the Cowboy Trail, passing through charming western towns, ranches, and beautiful foothills landscapes. Immerse yourself in cowboy culture by attending rodeos, visiting historic sites, and experiencing Western hospitality along the way.


Badlands and the Royal Tyrrell Museum

Explore the unique landscapes of the Badlands and delve into the fascinating world of dinosaurs at the renowned Royal Tyrrell Museum. Drive east from Calgary to reach the Badlands, characterized by their rugged canyons, colorful rock formations, and hoodoos. Take a hike through the otherworldly terrain, capturing stunning photographs and enjoying panoramic views.

Continue your journey to the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Drumheller, a world-class institution dedicated to paleontology. Marvel at the impressive collection of dinosaur fossils, including the famous T. rex, and learn about the ancient creatures that once roamed this region. Engage in interactive exhibits and join guided tours to deepen your understanding of the prehistoric world.


Canadian Rockies: Lake Louise and Banff

For a classic mountain road trip, venture west from Calgary into the Canadian Rockies and explore the iconic Lake Louise and Banff National Park. Witness the breathtaking turquoise waters of Lake Louise, surrounded by towering peaks, and take a leisurely stroll along the lakeside trail. Continue to Banff, a charming mountain town nestled in the heart of the Rockies. Explore the vibrant streets lined with shops, restaurants, and art galleries. Don't miss a visit to the Banff National Park Museum and the Banff Gondola for sweeping views of the surrounding mountains.


Drives to Provincial Parks: Kananaskis and Peter Lougheed

Discover the beauty of Alberta's provincial parks on a road trip to Kananaskis and Peter Lougheed Provincial Parks. Just a short drive from Calgary, these parks offer a tranquil escape into nature. Enjoy scenic drives through forests, valleys, and meadows, and stop for hikes to pristine lakes, such as Upper Kananaskis Lake and Spray Lakes. Immerse yourself in the peaceful ambiance and keep an eye out for wildlife sightings, including bears, elk, and moose.


Planning Tips for Road Trips

  • Check road conditions and weather forecasts before embarking on your road trip.
  • Pack essentials such as water, snacks, maps, and a first-aid kit.
  • Consider renting a car suitable for the terrain you'll encounter.
  • Plan your accommodations in advance, especially during peak travel seasons.
  • Take breaks and enjoy the journey, allowing time for spontaneous stops and exploration.


Calgary serves as a gateway to exciting road trips that showcase the natural beauty and diverse landscapes of Alberta and beyond. Whether you're seeking mountain vistas, dinosaur discoveries, or cultural experiences, these road trips from Calgary will create lasting memories and inspire your sense of adventure.

About Author
  • Sarah Johnson

    Sarah produces creative and informative content based on her travel experience. She keeps her blogs up-to-date with the latest information. 

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