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Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

Nr. Chester, UK
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Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

Hi,

My husband and I are visiting Calgary (from the UK) in May as part of our first wedding anniversary trip.

Having not been to Calgary before and not really knowing anyone who has visited - I wondered if anyone had some tips on the best place to get accommodation.

We are both in our early 30's and enjoy a good mixture of peace and quite and liveliness. We would like to stay somewhere that is in easy reach of all the 'must sees' but somewhere nice and picturesque.

If anyone has any suggestions, that would be great.

Thanks in advance.

Calgary, Canada
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1. Re: Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

There is an article that describes some Calgary neighbourhoods here:

tripadvisor.com/Travel-g154913-s204/Calgary:…

You may want to look at the Eau Claire or Kensington areas, as they are both quite central, but also close to the river pathways and parks.

Will you also be spending some time in the Rockies?

Nr. Chester, UK
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2. Re: Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

Hi Jerm,

Thanks so much for your reply - I'll check that link out. We were thinking of staying in the Westways B&B in Calgary as it sounds really nice from the reviews. Do you know it?

We are spending some time in the rockies, the plan is to drive from Seattle to Vancouver, have 3 days there then drive to Banff (stopping at Salmon Arm or Kamloops enroute for a brief overnight stop to break the journey up). We are hopefully looking to stay on Lake Louise for 3 nights which will actually fall right on our anniversary 18th May. Then it will be onward to Calgary for 3 nights.

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3. Re: Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

A few more comments:

1. I'm not familiar with that B&B, but it's in a good location for what you're looking for.

2. You may find yourself wishing you had more time in the Rockies and less in Calgary. Calgary is a pleasant enough city, but the Rockies are incredible, and there is quite a bit to see (although May is early for some places).

3. May 19 is a holiday this year, so things will be busier in the Rockies that weekend. Access roads to sights like Moraine Lake usually open for the summer that weekend (although the lake may still be frozen over).

4. That weekend is typically also the end of the ski season at Sunshine Village. Conditions are usually slushy, but it can be quite warm (and bright--bring your sunglasses and sunscreen), and they usually have some live music.

Calgary, Canada
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4. Re: Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

Also:

5. I'm not sure how this will work with your dates, but May 25 is the Lilac festival, which takes place very close to that B&B.

http://www.4streetcalgary.com/lilacfestival/

Nr. Chester, UK
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5. Re: Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

Thanks again Jerm, you've helped lots.

I'm a bit upset that it's a holiday 19th May so things will be busier - I guess we can't change our anniversary date though! I hope it's not going to be too busy and I hope Chateau Lake Louise is not going to be even more expensive that weekend with it being a holiday. We were hoping to leave it till nearer the time to book it so the prices fall but now I'm concerned with it being a holiday it will book up quickly. Not really sure what to do :-/

The plan is to be in Wash DC on the the 25th (we have relatives there) and then get the train to NYC for the last few days of our break. Our dates are flexible though although we definitely want to be at LL for our anniversary.

Hmmm...I guess we will have to sit down and work out or days as we were originally having 3 nights in Seattle, 3 nights in Vancouver, 1 night in Salmon Arm, 3 nights Lake Louise and 3 nights in Calgary before heading back to the USA.

Thanks again for all your help.

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Greater Sydney...
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6. Re: Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

Squiz,

Although I am yet to visit AB, I have been researching extensively over the past months for our own trip in June, with great assistance from TA.

Personally I would cut down Calgary, as also previously suggested. My eldest daughter lives there and advised me one night would suffice. The reason is that, as also mentioned, there would be far greater benefit in staying in Banff; far more to see and do, and from my research, I agree totally.

Next, the cost of staying at LL is something that is presently disturbing me, compared to the cost of staying 20 mins down the road at Banff.

I think you could consider driving up to Jasper for a night or two as an alternative for some of your time, but an anniversary in LL does sound romantic.

Just my .02c worth.

Happy planning

Brian

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Nr. Chester, UK
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7. Re: Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

Thanks Frommy.

I think from what you and Jerm have said we will definitely revisit the 3 nights in Calgary plan.

Lake Louise is just one of those places I've always wanted to visit so we just thought we'd splash out for our first anniversary. We were going to stay 3 nights there but we may only be able to afford the 1 if they don't reduce the prices!

My boss has been to Banff and he stayed one night at Fairmount Banff Springs - another expensive option however!

This is the plan we originally had:

8th May - Fly Manchester (UK) to Chicago - 2 nights Chicago (I have relatives there)

10th May Fly Chicago to Seattle - 3 nights Seattle

13th May Drive in hire car from Seattle to Vancouver - 3 nights Vancouver

16th May Drive Vancouver to Salmon Arm - 1 night stopover in Salmon Arm

17th May Drive Salmon Arm to Lake Louise - 3 nights on Lake Louise (anniversary is 18th May)

20th May - Drive LL to Calgary (3 nights Calgary)

23rd May - Fly Calgary to Wash DC (via Chic or Min) - 3 nights stay near Wash DC (we have relatives there too)

26th May - Train from Wash DC to New York - 3 nights in NYC

29th May - Fly New York back home to Manchester

I think some restructuring is in order!

Thanks again.

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8. Re: Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

You're welcome, Squiz.

You may want to wait until Vancouver to pick up your rental car, as it may be very expensive, if not impossible, to drop off a car in a different country than where you picked it up. You may not really need a car in those cities anyway.

Yes, Lake Louise is definitely an expensive place to stay, especially at the Chateau. I'm not sure what will happen with prices or availability for that weekend. As mentioned, you will find a greater selection of lower-priced hotels in Banff if you decide to spend some of your time there.

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Nr. Chester, UK
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9. Re: Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

We've looked into the car hire and we can do it for a good price. We drove from Chicago to LA a few years ago and we had to pay like $500 drop-off charge for being so far away!! Now that was expensive! :-D

I think we may look at staying 2 nights on Lake Louise and 2 nights in Banff (therefore cutting down Calgary by a night to 2 nights). Looking at Jasper it's about 5 hours drive from Banff and we don't want to be having too much driving around our anniversary. Depending on what the prices we may even treat ourselves and stay at the Fairmount Banff Springs!

Thanks, you've been a great help.

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10. Re: Which is the best area to base yourself in Calgary?

Glad you found a good deal on the car rental.

>>Looking at Jasper it's about 5 hours drive from Banff and we don't want to be having too much driving around our anniversary.<<

It's about 3-4 hours of driving between Banff and Jasper. This is a very scenic drive, and with stops along the way, you could spend a whole day. Even if you don't stay in Jasper, consider spending a day driving part of this route.

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