Whether you are a local or visitor, you must familiarize yourself with some of the best beaches around town!
While Calgary may not be known for its beaches, there's still plenty of options to cool off on a hot day and enjoy being surrounded by nature. Make sure you bring an umbrella or shade tent to protect from the sun! And, make sure you slop on the sunscreen and slap on a hat to make for an enjoyable day at the beach (and no sunburns when you get home).
Following is our list of five Calgary beaches you will not want to miss!
Located in Fish Creek Provincial Park is the popular swimming area of Sikome Lake. It's a man-made lake with a long sandy beach and well kept facilities (bathroom, change rooms, picnic tables, playground, and concession), and unlike many swimming areas in the Calgary area this offers a warmer experience since the water isn't glacier-fed.
As of 2016 access to this park is no longer free, you can purchase day passes at the entrance for $5 per adult, $3 for children, free for 5 and under, or $10 for a family. You can also get a season pass if you'll be heading there often!
22 Sikome Circle SE
Open late June to early September from 10am to 7pm
2- Bowness Park
Don't head here if you're looking specifically to swim, but if you're up for some beautiful scenery and getting your feet wet, this is the perfect spot. A shallow lagoon runs along the park's southern edge which is great for cooling off, skipping rocks, or you'll find some fun paddle boating too! In general, it's a beautiful park for picnicking with extensive paths, playground, shelters, fire pit, and wading pool.
8900 48 Ave NW
Open 5am to 11pm
In Calgary's 31-acre backyard of St. Patrick's Island is a full day of fun exploring. Trout Beach is great for families with space to play, wildlife to see, and there's great food options nearby if you don't feel like packing lunch for the day. Often on weekends the island has free community events as a perfect addition to your adventure.
St Patrick's Island
4- Sandy Beach
Don't let the name fool you, Sandy Beach is anything but sandy! Regardless, this gravel beach on the Elbow River is a favourite for many young families and a perfect picnic spot. The park boasts many picnic areas and shelters, fir pits, BBQ stands, and washroom facilities. There's also a playground area and ample pathways to explore. In the heat of summer you'll find many rafters on the weekend, a fun way to keep cool!
4500 14A St. SW
5- Barrier Lake
If you're up for a bit of a drive, we recommend this picturesque lake. It's very accessible from the parking lot which brings paddle boarders and boaters if you want to have a float! There's some sandy spots for sand castle building, and plenty of trails for exploring.
Highway 40 Kananaskis Trail (approx 1 hour drive from Calgary)
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