Jul 23

Park Yourself

by Janice Grey · 0 comments

photo credit

A day in downtown Calgary is exhilarating. With so many fabulous shops, restaurants and sightseeing opportunities, a person could be on the go for hours! Eventually, you may need a little rest to recover from all its awesomeness. So, where do you go when you need to set your arms free from shopping bags or relax after a magnificent meal? Or, maybe you want to exercise or just have fun? Downtown Calgary has several parks, perfect for such occasions.

Olympic Plaza (228 - 8th Ave. SE)

Built for the Olympics in 1988, Olympic Plaza continues to be a popular destination. Surrounded by trees and with a beautiful pond, it is a small sanctuary in the city. There is plenty of seating, which makes it a great location for a lunch or snack break. Olympic Plaza is frequently used for events or festivals and during those times, it comes alive with people and entertainment. During the winter, the pond becomes a skating rink, so put your feet in some skates and go for a spin.

Devonian Gardens (400, 317 - 7th Ave. SW)

Located in the Core, Devonian Gardens is Calgary’s only indoor park. Enclosed by windows that let in tons of natural light, the park is a thriving garden complete with tropical plants, ponds, waterfalls and a “living wall”. Enjoy a park setting all year, even in the dead of winter or during those rainy days. There is ample seating throughout the park and a food court nearby, which is convenient for an indoor picnic. For a fee, Devonian Gardens can be booked for private functions including corporate events, weddings and birthday parties. They also offer hands-on drop-in programs at certain times throughout the year (for a small charge).

Eau Claire Plaza (3rd St. & Riverfront Ave. SW)

Eau Claire Plaza is located by the Bow River and is perfect for a sit down. It also has a wading pool and playground, great for taking the kids for a splash during the summer. However, it is not just a lovely outdoor space. If you need a break from the heat or are ravenous from all that outdoorsy activity, escape inside to the market to shop or eat. Eau Claire Plaza also hosts a variety of festivals and events throughout the year.

Prince’s Island Park (4th St. & 1st Ave. SW)

Prince’s Island Park is vast, lush and perfect for a bike ride, jog or stroll on its pathways. If you are not so energetic and in need of a rest or a snack, there are plenty of areas to sit and read, people watch or enjoy a picnic. For a more formal dining experience, the park is home to the River Café. During the year, Prince’s Island Park is also host to many large events and celebrations.

So, whether your goal is to relax, burn some calories or celebrate (or all three!), there is a park in downtown Calgary that is suitable for you.

For opening hours and more information on these and other downtown parks, visit www.calgary.ca/CSPS/Parks/Pages/Locations/Downtown-parks/Downtown-parks.aspx

You can also follow them on Twitter @CalgaryParks

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