1. Walk in the Rain
You’ll probably want to bundle up – Calgary rain is rarely warm. Even just a walk around the block is entertaining when it’s raining. Taking the kids for a walk in the rain always makes me feel like an awesome mom for minimal effort.
2. Go Swimming
From neighborhood pools to Leisure Centres, Calgary has tons of options for family friendly indoor public swimming.
3. Rec Centres and Leisure Centres
In addition to swimming, many of the Rec and Leisure Centres also have other activities included with your admission like climbing walls and gymnasiums where you can play things like badminton and basketball.
Your kids will love spending a day at Calgary’s science centre. Younger kids will enjoy learning through play at the Creative Kids Museum and older kids will enjoy making creations in Open Studio upstairs. Both will enjoy the hands on exhibits of Earth and Sky and Energy and Innovation.
5. Fort Calgary
Fort Calgary is a beautiful small museum about Calgary’s early history. They have really made an effort to make the museum appeal to kids as well as adults. Read more: Fort Calgary Review
With many full-sized aircraft on display, The Hangar is a great place for airplane fans.
The Calgary Zoo is open no matter what the weather and is way less crowded when it’s not nice out. Many of the exhibits are indoors and if you throw on some splash pants and rain boots, the Zoo has some of the best puddles for splashing in.
8. Go to a Trampoline Park
Calgary now boasts two indoor trampoline parks – the Extreme Airpark and the Flying Squirrel. As well as InjaNation where you can find trampolines, climbing walls and obstacle courses. These will be a sure hit with your active kids that would be climbing the walls inside at home.
9. Go Climbing
Speaking of climbing, the Calgary Climbing Centre Hanger has a Climb Park with drop-in times.
10. Studio Bell – National Music Centre
Experience and learn about music in a whole new way in Calgary’s new National Music Centre – Studio Bell.
Calgary has several different indoor play places options which tend to be less busy in the Spring and Summer.
12. Glenbow Museum
The Glenbow might not be the first place you think of taking the kids, but they have really put in an effort to make their exhibits engaging to kids as well as adults. My top pick is the Mavericks exhibit which is full of dynamic exhibits and hands on experiences. You’ll also want to check out the Discovery Room which has activities designed just for kids.
13. Calgary Airport
The Calgary Airport has a lot to offer for kids, and all of it is free (except for the pricey parking!). The most obvious attraction is the airplanes themselves which you can see out the windows at various points. They also have 2 play areas, including one 2nd floor which has a great playground climber for school aged kids and big windows with an airplane view. The Spaceport near the food court, provides a lot of interesting material for kids (and adults) interested in NASA space programs.
Ride the C-train. This may seem to be an odd choice but my kids adore riding the C-train. You can explore the city and it only costs $3.25 for adults and $2.25 for youth for a 90 minute ticket. Kids 5 and under are free.
15. Lougheed House
The Lougheed House is a historical site and museum. Effort has been made to restore the building back to it’s original turn of the 20th century state when the Lougheed family lived there. They also host museum exhibits.
The Bow Habitat Station and Fish hatchery is a surprisingly engaging place to visit. In includes aquariums that feature fish that live in the various habitats in Alberta and a beautiful interpretive centre. You can also get a tour of the fish hatchery for an additional cost.
17. Grain Academy Museum
Located at the BMO Centre on the Plus 15 level in Stampede Park. The Grain Academy Museum says they are “An interactive celebration of the grain industry in Western Canada”. They are open Monday-Friday and admission is free.
Find out more about the Grain Academy Museum at their website.
18. Devonian Gardens
The Devonian Gardens is a little indoor oasis in the city. School-aged kids will love the challenge of the playground and climbing wall and everyone will enjoy walking around and seeing the fish. If you have some extra time, you can find a map and explore the plus-15 system.
20. Calgary Public Library
Library cards at the Calgary Public Library are now free for everyone. They also offer many free programs and activities. Recently, the library has also added toys to the kids areas – some are small but many have such as Fish Creek library have new early learning centres – you can even find a real fire engine inside the Central Library.
Shakers has offerings for kids of all ages and adults. There is no admission charge, you only pay for the activities you want to access. They have several indoor activities including an inflatable village, laser tag, a climbing wall and tons of redemption games.
The Police Interpretive Centre opened at Westwinds Drive in the NE in the fall of 2015 and is open to the public on Fridays and Saturdays with no admission charge. Some exhibits do have strong content – if that is a concern for your family you are asked to check with the front desk.
23. Chinese Cultural Centre Museum
On the lower level of the Chinese Cultural Centre you can find the Chinese Artifacts Museum. You can learn about the history of the Chinese community in Calgary as well as historical Chinese artifacts and replicas.
24. Go Bowling
Calgary has quite a number of different family friendly bowling options.
25. Military Museums
The Military Museums is dedicated to educating the public about Canada’s navy, army, and air force and is only $20 for a family.
26. Mall Play Areas
Most of Calgary’s malls have at least a small free play area aimed at kids 5 and under. Check the height requirements before you go if you have a 5 year old or a taller 4 year old.
27. Monster Mini-golf
Go mini-golfing inside at Monster Mini-golf’s glow-in-the-dark 18 hole course.
Calgary’s spray parks typically open around mid-June and only close if there is lightning. If you put on some rain gear it can be a surprisingly fun thing to do in the rain and it won’t be busy.
What are your favorite things to do on a rainy day?