Top 3 Beaches in Calgary (And 4 More a Short Drive Away)

Posted by Justin Havre on Wednesday, May 22nd, 2024 at 1:53pm.

Best Beaches Near Calgary

Living in Calgary means you can enjoy beach days! While we may be landlocked, there's an array of fantastic beaches just a short drive away. From artificial oases to natural lakeshores, there's something for everyone. 

Whether you're looking for a kid-friendly spot with playgrounds or a tranquil escape surrounded by mountains, you'll find it near Calgary. So pack your swimsuit, sunscreen, and sense of adventure as we dive into the best beaches near Calgary, Alberta!

Sikome Lake: Calgary's Beloved Summer Destination

Located in Fish Creek Provincial Park, one of the best parks in Calgary, Sikome Lake is beloved by sun-seekers. With its sandy shores, clean water, and convenient amenities, it's easy to see why it's a favourite. This artificial lake is regularly tested and maintained to ensure it's safe for swimming. Do note that while there are safety ambassadors, there are no lifeguards.

The three playgrounds are a hit with kids of all ages, while parents can relax on the sand or dip in the refreshing water. We've seen countless sandcastle masterpieces and heard joyful laughter echoing across the beach. It truly is a place where memories are made.

Changing rooms, flush toilets, showers, picnic tables, a concession stand, and even a beach supply shop make spending a day here easy. In addition to the beach, there's a sand volleyball court. Multiple parking lots and bike racks make the area easily accessible.

While there is an entrance fee, it goes towards maintaining the facilities and ensuring a clean and enjoyable experience.

  • Family day pass (up to 2 adults and 4 children) - $10
  • Adult pass (age 18+) - $5
  • Senior pass (age 65+) - $4
  • Child/Youth pass (age 6–17) - $3
  • Persons with disabilities - $2 (aides enter free)
  • Child pass (age 0–5) - Free

A beach wheelchair is available, making the beach accessible for visitors with mobility challenges.

Edworthy Park: A Hidden Gem by the Bow River

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city at Edworthy Park's secluded riverfront spot, tucked between the Wildwood neighbourhood and the Bow River. This rocky beach area offers stunning views of the Bow River and is perfect for a relaxing afternoon. A quick trip here can provide a refreshing break. Spread a blanket, soak up the sun, and listen to the soothing sounds of the river. Try rock skipping—it's a classic beach activity!

In addition to the beach, there are multiple other amenities, including two playgrounds (one inclusive), public washrooms, picnic areas, walking trails, and an off-leash dog area. Just a short walk away across the bridge, Angel's Cafe offers delicious coffee, ice cream, and light meals. 

Do note that the Bow River has strong currents. If you choose to enter the water, please be extremely cautious and never leave children unattended.

Trout Beach: A Tranquil Escape in the City Center

Rocky Beaches on St. Patrick's Island Park in Calgary, Alberta

St. Patrick's Island is a hidden oasis in the heart of Calgary, and Trout Beach is its crown jewel. This beach boasts calm water that's perfect for wading, though water shoes are recommended due to the rockiness of the beach. Its proximity to downtown makes it a convenient getaway even for those working in Calgary's thriving business districts.

As you relax on this peaceful pebble beach, you can feel a connection to the outdoors even when you're in the Calgary City Centre. In our experience, it's a great place to escape the crowds and enjoy quiet time in nature.

Don't just stay on the beach! Explore the rest of the island, which offers walking trails, art installations, an amphitheatre, and stunning city skyline views. Pack a picnic and make a day of it.

Sidewalk Citizen Bakery and Phil & Sebastian Coffee Roasters are steps away. Grab a pastry and a latte to enjoy while you soak up the sun, and the chocolate croissants are simply divine—a must-try for any foodie. 

Additional Beach Options Near Calgary

For those willing to venture further from Calgary, there are even more beach options. Here are a few of our favourites:

Big Hill Springs Provincial Park

Located 35 minutes northwest of Calgary, Big Hill Springs offers shallow water play areas, small waterfalls, and sand for kids. It's a fantastic option for families looking for a nature-filled adventure, especially with the scenic drive showcasing the diversity of Alberta's landscape.

Sibbald Lake

One of the best lakes near Calgary, Sibbald Lake boasts a sandy/rocky beach and tranquil surroundings. It's perfect for swimming, picnicking, and paddling around in a raft or paddleboard. This is an excellent option for a weekend getaway.

Barrier Lake

Aerial View of Barrier Lake, Ringed by Rocky Beaches

Nestled in Kananaskis Country, Barrier Lake is about an hour's drive from Calgary. Its rough sand beach and stunning mountain views make it a popular spot for swimming, boating, and hiking. The area's natural beauty is unparalleled, making it a worthwhile trip for nature enthusiasts.

Quarry Lake

Located near Canmore, about an hour west of Calgary, Quarry Lake offers a unique beach experience with crystal-clear water and a backdrop of majestic mountains. It's an excellent option for those who enjoy swimming, hiking, and picnicking. If you're considering a move, Canmore offers a charming mountain town lifestyle with stunning views and outdoor activities.

Your Next Beach Adventure Awaits in Calgary, Alberta

Ready to hit the beach? Start by researching the options mentioned in this article further and choose the one that best suits your interests and needs. Check weather conditions and park websites for any updates or closures before you go. Remember to pack all the essentials, like sunscreen, hats, water, and snacks, to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable day at the beach.

Calgary offers more than urban attractions. Its proximity to these beaches makes it a prime location for those seeking a balanced lifestyle with access to city amenities and natural escapes.

If you're interested in Calgary real estate, contact Justin Havre Real Estate Team with eXp Realty with Calgary Homes at (403) 217-0003 to get in touch with a local real estate agent who can help you find your Calgary dream home today.

Leave a Comment