As we enter into warm summer months that get us excited to dash outside, we are faced with a unique challenge. The spread of COVID-19 is still a threat to the health of our community, and we are tasked with maintaining social distancing guidelines and adhering to best practices to slow and prevent the spread of the virus. The good news is there are still ways to stay safe and enjoy what summer has to offer, by taking our activities and social time into the great outdoors. Meeting up with a friend or family member and maintaining a 2 metre distance is attainable when you head out to one of these amazing parks Calgary has to offer and keep a few safety guidelines in mind:

  • Avoid crowded areas, and check Google Maps ‘Popular Times’ graph view for your desired location to see how you may avoid peak hours. 
  • Bring and wear a face mask if you find that the 2m bubble cannot be maintained at any time, or wear it for extra protection and peace of mind. 
  • Bring your own blanket or sitting mat to help to enforce space between you and any other individual.
  • Pay attention to any surfaces you encounter. Wherever possible, bring hand sanitizer, sanitizer wipes and a bag for any garbage you may accumulate.
  • Do not share food with other visitors.
  • Spread out, give ample passing radius on trails, and respect the space of other visitors.
  • Click here for some more recommendations from the City of Calgary.  

1. Sue Higgins Park

You can find this park on the south-east side of the city, running along the banks of the Bow River. Home to the largest fenced off-leash dog park in Calgary, this gem is one of our favourites because of its extensive paved path system, and proximity to Carburn Park! Head over the Eric Harvie Bridge, and you can connect to this sprawling area, complete with fields and ponds. With it’s beautiful scenery, Sue Higgins Park is great for a stroll, or to meet up with a fellow dog lover for a doggie-date.

Paved Bike Paths Off-leash trails
Near Water Picnic Areas 
Washrooms ✘ Playgrounds


2. Nose Hill Park

Situated in Northwest Calgary, Nose Hill Park covers over 11 square kilometres of beautiful rolling grasslands, trees, shrubs, and fields of wildflowers. With paved and unpaved paths perfect for walking and mountain biking, it is also popular with dog walkers for it’s clearly marked on-leash and off-leash areas scattered across its quadrants. There are multiple parking areas and entrances around the perimeter of the park- so you can have a different adventure every time you visit.

 Bike Paths  Off-leash/on-leash areas
Near Water ✓ Picnic Areas 
(Shaganappi Entrance)


3. North Glenmore Park

When it comes to Calgary parks, North Glenmore has something to offer everyone! Paved paths, gorgeous scenic views, and BBQ/picnic areas all nestled around the winding waterside of the Glenmore Reservoir. Lush forest and water-front wildlife surrounded by natural beauty, is the highlight of this expansive park, with east and west sides connecting through a maze of pathways and easy-strolling paths.

Paved Bike Paths Off-leash/on-leash
Near Water Picnic Areas 
 Washrooms Playgrounds
 Tennis Courts


4. Fish Creek Provincial Park

Fish Creek Park is unique from the other mentions on this list, as it is the only provincial park within city limits! With over 100 kilometres of paved and unpaved pathsspanning from east to west across 19 km in total, Fish Creek Park is one of the largest urban parks in North America. Nestled in the south end of Calgary, this park shares three borders with the lower quadrant of the city, and on the west by the territory of the Tsuu T’ina Nation. This park is known as a popular fishing spot, and frequented by hikers, bikers, dog walkers, wildlife enthusiasts, and those seeking day-use areas for picnics and small gatherings. This park is quite popular and may experience higher volumes of visitors. Click here for more information on some COVID-19 restrictions affecting washrooms and closure of the Sikome Aquatic Facility. 

 Bike Paths ✓ On-leash Only
Near Water Picnic Areas/Day Use


5. Sandy Beach Park

Stretching along the Elbow River, this great little park hugs numerous river-side beach areas great for getting your feet wet, or letting your pooch have a swim. Across the Elbow River Pathway Bridge you will find Sandy River Beach off-leash river access for your furry friends on a rocky beach, with lots of room to distance from other dog owners. Not just fun for our four-legged friends… everyone can find something to do, with a playground for kids, and rafting, canoe, or paddleboarding access to the river. Sheltered picnic areas, and ample green space is great for a socially-distanced picnic, and soaking in some sun! For a further stroll, head up the hill to River Park for some breathtaking scenes of the city skyline, or just north-east of Sandy Beach to the connecting Riverdale Park for some shadier trails.

Bike Paths Off-leash/on-leash
Near Water Picnic Areas 
Washrooms ✓  Playgrounds
Rafting Access