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A Blast From the Past The Complete Guide to Calgary’s Heritage Park

A Blast From the Past: The Complete Guide to Calgary’s Heritage Park 

One of the best ways to get to know Calgary a bit more is to learn about its rich history. Fortunately, you can do that in the most exciting way possible by giving the city’s Heritage Park a visit! 

This family-friendly destination is a must-visit for visitors and locals alike because of the dazzling selections of activities you can enjoy here. 

From eating at a 20th century-inspired cafe to riding a vintage steam train, here’s everything you need to know to experience Heritage Park to the fullest. 

Where to Eat in Heritage Park, Calgary 

Club Café

Pricing: $$

Club Café is a 20th century-inspired eatery with a unique ambiance that will take you back in time. 

The food choices here are filled with classics like sandwiches, burgers, soups, and salads. If you want some quick bites, this is the perfect setting. 

In our opinion, the breakfast sandwich is the best one on their menu. It’s filled with ham, egg, lettuce, tomato, and mayonnaise with an Alberta bakery cheese bun. 

They also have a few coffee flavors, all of which are strong enough to fuel you for the rest of your exploration of Heritage Park. 

Harvey’s Confectionary

Pricing: $$

If you need a quick pick-me-up in the middle of the day while you’re in Heritage Park, try out the ice cream, candies, and sodas options at Harvey’s Confectionary. Here, you’ll see a lot of families along with their happy kids holding delicious-looking ice creams. 

This store is well-known for their Mackay’s ice cream, so be sure to check that out. 

Gunn’s Dairy Barn 

Pricing: $$

Gunn’s Dairy Barn is another unique eatery that offers a stunning interior that looks like the inside of a barn. In fact, it looks so remarkable that it’s often booked for private events like wedding receptions and birthdays

A few examples of the food they serve here are hot dogs, chicken tenders, salads, and burgers. We highly recommend getting their 5 oz. all-beef burger. 

The Selkirk

Pricing: $$

The Selkirk is a luxurious dining spot in Heritage Park known for its period-inspired interior that will surely summon a sense of nostalgia. 

Their patio seating is also lovely, especially if you want to appreciate the surrounding sights. It’s located in a lovely spot inside the park with only a few minute-walk away from the beautiful gardens.

They serve a wonderful array of main dishes however, our three main favorites include the citrus marinated mahi mahi, 9 oz. New York striploin, and pancetta bison burger.  

Railway Café

Pricing: $

The Railway Café offers a more low-cost dining experience compared to other spots at Heritage Park. 

They offer an assortment of food options like soups, sandwiches, and salads. Additionally, they also have specialty beverages that are worth checking out. If you’re traveling with kids though, we think other spots are more suitable for them. 

Like other eateries at Heritage Park, the café is a blast from the past and is designed to mimic the 1930s lunch counters that were favored by a lot of people during its time. 

Wainwright Hotel 

Pricing: $

Only open during lunch time, Wainwright Hotel is one of the most popular dining spots in Heritage Park, known for delicious meals that come in affordable prices. 

They have a fairly extensive menu with the southwest brisket cheese melt sandwich being one of the best. The wainwright turkey BLT wrap and heritage 6oz Alberta beef burger are also worth a special mention. 

Alberta Bakery

Pricing: $

If there’s one thing that left a lasting expression on our visit to the Alberta Bakery, it’s that the store smells so good! You just know that there are delicious treats waiting for you at the counter. 

There aren’t a lot of choices on their menu, but they do make delectable bakes. Their sourdough bread is definitely top notch! 

At times, you might catch a long line to the bakery, but if you can manage to wait for a few minutes, we can assure you it’s worth it! 

Vulcan Ice Cream Parlour

Pricing: $

A visit to Heritage Park would simply be incomplete without trying out a scoop (or two) of the ice creams from the Vulcan Ice Cream Parlour. 

They only offer classic flavors, but they’re still pretty delicious – people still line up for them. 

Their interior is probably our favorite from all the Heritage Park eateries. Make sure to snap a photo of yourself in this 1910s-inspired establishment! 

Midway Treatery

Pricing: $

Midway Treatery offers a lot of amusement park classics like hot dogs, snow cones, candy floss, popcorn, and more!

It’s definitely a great option if you’re looking for some quick bites. Expect a 15-to-20-minute waiting time during the weekends though! 

What to Do in Heritage Park, Calgary

Have your portraits taken at Park Lane Antique Portrait Studio


Commemorate your visit to the Heritage Park by getting your portraits taken at Park Lane Antique Portrait Studio. 

With the vintage effects on the photos, you’ll look like you came straight out of old Western Canada. They even have costumes and accessories to complete the illusion, so no need to bring your own to fit in the photos. 

Do a test of courage with Calgary Ghost Tours


The Calgary Ghost Tours are definitely not for the faint-hearted. If you’re brave, though, you can get to know Heritage Park’s scariest stories with the help of a guide who will take you around the park after sundown. 

The tour goes on for about 90 minutes, so we suggest bringing some sensible shoes along with some sense of bravery enough to face the ghosts that haunt the place. Okay, maybe we’re joking about the last part….or not! 

Feel the spirit of Halloween at Ghouls’ Night Out


Celebrate Halloween at Heritage Park by attending one of the best events of the year – Ghouls’ Night Out!

People of all ages are invited to wear their best Halloween costumes while exploring the park. Since this is a kid-friendly event, it’s not really scary similar to any door-to-door trick or treating. 

It’s suggested for attendees to bring flashlights because this happens during nighttime. 

Celebrate Christmas with Christmas in Alberta


The Heritage Park is already gearing up for another big event – Christmas in Alberta.

Though there aren’t any details for this event yet, past Christmas celebrations included noteworthy decorations all around the park, beautiful carol singing, and a chance to meet Santa! 

Checkout antique cars at the Gasoline Alley Museum 


A visit to the Gasoline Alley Museum would knock the socks off car enthusiasts. 

Considered the world’s biggest collection of antique vehicles, the collection includes a 1910 fuel tank wagon, a 1908 REO auto buggy, a 1915 ford model T, and many more! You’ll also get the chance to see refurbished gas pumps and other interesting antique finds. 

Discover local art at Festival of Quilts


The Festival of Quilts is an annual outdoor event meant to flaunt a striking collection of quilts, mostly by locals. You’ll also get to purchase quilts made by Calgary’s own talented quilt vendors. 

Additionally, there’s a chance to sign up for several workshops that will tell you a brief history of quilting and show you the basics you need to start a new hobby. 

Send mail to a friend at Post Office and Telephone Exchange


If you have a loved one back home you’d like to buy a souvenir for, make sure to drop by the Post Office and Telephone Exchange at Heritage Park. 

Here, you can get a hold of fun postcards and stamps and even get a chance to mail it right there and then.

Join the Spring Rally in the Alley


The Spring Rally in the Alley is one of the many fun programs the Heritage Park has to offer. The fun activities this has to offer are mini golf, a game of ring toss, treasure hunt, and more. 

The cost of buying tickets for this program also includes access to the Gasoline Alley Museum. 

Ride the Nightingale Accessible Railcar 


One of the Heritage Park’s many highlights is the Nightingale Accessible Railcar — the park’s newest addition. You should take the chance to ride this classically inspired steam train that tells a lot about Alberta’s public transportation history. 

The best parts about this railcar are that it’s extremely accessible for people on wheelchairs and that it’s sustainable, being powered by solar panels

Where to Shop in Heritage Park, Calgary

Botsford Harness Shop


At the Botsford Harness Shop, you’ll get to purchase special goods you’d want to bring home with you. This includes jewellery, dolls, figurines, and other quirky items perfect for gifting.

Do note that this shop is only open during the summer. 

Claresholm General Store


Explore a whole new world of flavors at Claresholm General Store if you’re into sweets! Most of their offers include antique sweets you wouldn’t find anywhere else. 

The store as well as the experience you can get from it, is reminiscent of the candy stores from the old times. 

IG Baker and Company


IG Baker and Company is another store at Heritage Park that sells specialty items you’d have a hard time resisting. Their assortment of items includes an array of choices of wooden toys, candies, and more. 

Gledhill’s Drugstore


Gledhill’s Drugstore sells a lot of important goods you might need to be well-equipped for your visit to Heritage Park. This includes bug sprays, sunscreens, soaps, and the like. 

Christmas Market


See a lot of local vendors gathered in one place at the Christmas Market in Heritage Park. This is the perfect chance to do some late Christmas shopping because you’ll have access to an extensive collection of different kinds of goods in one roof!

While the complete list of vendors has yet to be announced, it’s certainly one of the things we’re looking forward to in the holiday season. 

Be sure to be on the lookout on their website to be updated on the upcoming announcements. 

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