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The 6 Best Museums to Visit in Calgary

by K Gordon Schultz

Winter Activities in Alberta, Canada

If, while in Alberta, you want to explore your Indiana Jones side and peruse through some museums, Calgary is one of your best bets. There are more museums in Calgary that you can shake a fist at.

Aerospace Museum

The centrepiece of this Aerospace museum is a very rare WWII Lancaster bomber. Located close to Calgary International airport, it can make a great stop off point on the way to the Rockies to see some great remnants from the skies and the wars.

Fort Calgary

This original site dates way back to 1875 when West Mounted Police (now the RCMP) built Fort Calgary near the confluence of the Bow River and Elbow River. There are all kinds of great reproductions of scenes from the olden days as well as a beautiful 40-acre riverside park.

Glenbow Museum

The main focus of the Glenbow museum is the history of Western Canada. Calgary philanthropist Eric Harvie set it up in 1954 and through the years, there have been more and more great exhibits. The permanent exhibitions include Western Africa, warriors of the world, other first nations of Canada and Asian religious sculptures. There is also a great art gallery and museum shop here where you can pick up something to bring home.

Military Museums

This museum has four permanent galleries, dedicated to four regiments: the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (PPCLI), the Calgary Highlanders, the King’s Own Calgary Regiment (aka 103rd Regiment (Calgary Rifles), 14th Canadian Armoured Regiment/Calgary Tanks) and the Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadians). Renovations have just been completed and there is now also Air Force and Navy Units.

Naval Museum of Alberta

The Naval Museum of Alberta has only just reopened after many months of closure. It is a small but excellent museum. It focuses mostly on Alberta’s contribution to the Royal Canadian Navy. The displays, however, are extensive and cover a variety of interesting topics.

TELUS World of Science Calgary

Thanks to a long list of superhero scientist movies that have recently been released around the world, kids these days no longer see science as the bore it once was. At the TELUS, there is a “discovery dome”, a demonstration theatre, and nearly a hundred fun interactive “exhibits” on all kinds of aspects of science. It is one of the rare breed of museums that manages to be educational and fun at the same time.

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