The largest city in the province of Alberta, Calgary’s population is 1.3Million (2021). The Calgary Tower is one of its most prominent attractions. Designed by W. G. Milne, it was completed in 1968 at a cost of 3.5 Million Dollars. We paid ($20 Can) and took the elevator to view the city from the above. A section of the floor added in 2005 is see-through which made me gasp. It is 6′ wide by 4.5′. I did conquer my fear of heights and stepped on it for a quick photo. Both the revolving floor restaurant and the observation deck provide panoramic views of the city.
Calgary’s most popular event is the Stampede, an annual rodeo festival that draws more than 1 million people every year, doubling the city’s population for its duration. We missed this event when we visited at the end of September of 2022.
We drove to Rotary Park where we observed Calgary’s beautiful skyline at Mount Pleasant Viewpoint before making our way on foot to downtown for lunch. The Rotary Park is home to one of the Centre Street Bridge Calgary Lions. The Lion’s statue originally installed in 1916 along with three others became a symbol of the city. The Lions were removed in 1999 and replaced with like statues. In 2017 one Lion was relocated to Rotary Park and preserved to show its age. It continues to watch over the city from the park.
We wandered through the streets of downtown Calgary, visiting the beautiful gardens of the historic Lougheed House, built in 1891 by Senator James Lougheed and stopping by the Family of Man, an iconic group of 21ft tall statues designed by Mario Armengol.
After lunch we drove the Chalk wall, an outdoor chalkboard that encourages people to “dream big” and where visitors complete the sentence “Before I die … I want to” using provided chalk. A footnote indicates “In the end, we only regret the chances we did not take”. Isn’t that the truth! I wrote Before I die … I want to see more of the world and Before I die … I want to see Lebanon thrive.
At sunset, we drove to the Skyline lookout to observe the Calgary skyline at night. As the Queen of England had recently died, the British flag illuminated one of the buildings. It was spectacular!