Classic Attraction: Canada Olympic Park

This small ski hill and world-class training facility morphs into a thrill-seeker’s emporium in the summer. Mountain bikers test their mettle on everything from steep glade runs to winding single tracks to teeter-totters, drops and big jumps.

There’s also a 30-foot climbing wall, trampoline bungees, a Zorbing course and, for skittish parents, minigolf.

Local Picks

“I take my daughter to Heritage Park Historical Village. We ride the authentic steam train, get off at the antique midway and ride the Ferris wheel, caterpillar and swings as many times as she likes. There’s never much in the way of lineups, and once she’s had her fill of all that, we get an ice cream and talk about the wonders of the age of rail. It’s almost embarrassingly wholesome. Also, consistently magical.”

Chris Turner, author of The Geography of Hope

“Nothing beats a long afternoon stroll with any of my kids or friends along the magical river path that runs beside Calgary’s Bow River… before crossing the bridge into Prince’s Island Park. There we sit on the stairs and people-watch, which is always interesting. We inevitably end up at River Café, sitting at an outdoor patio table, sipping a glass of crisp white. It’s calming, relaxing, peaceful, beautiful.”

Arlene Dickinson, CEO of Venture Communications and star of CBC Television’s Dragons’ Den

“I love to stroll through the Calgary Zoo, where they’ve just added to the Prehistoric Park. It has life-sized animatronic dinosaurs that move, make sounds and are incredibly realistic! After touring the new conservatory and elephant enclosure, cross the Bow River bridge into Inglewood. The backyard garden at Rouge Restaurant is an idyllic place to spend a sunny afternoon, so long as it ends with their crème brûlée.”

Julie Van Rosendaal, co-host of Viva’s It’s Just Food and author of four cookbooks, including One Smart Cookie