Ways to Get from Calgary to Edmonton

things to do in calgary

Because they are the two largest cities in Alberta, many people travel between the two. Some people may be excited about the opportunity to travel to a different city. It could be for work, socializing, or paying a visit to loved ones for others. In fact, there has been discussion about constructing a hyperloop due to the high demand for transportation between the two cities. Imagine how awesome that would be.

Whether you're just passing through or planning a daylong excursion, we've got you covered with information on where to stop, how to get from one city to another, and more as you make your way from point A to point B.  

Planning a Road Trip from Calgary to Edmonton: Essentials

It takes roughly three hours to drive the almost 300 kilometers from Calgary to Edmonton without stopping for any major breaks. In general, driving along Highway 2 is a simple, flat experience. In fact, there is only one highway that you can take to get from A to B. Below, however, we'll detail the many stops and activities available en route for those who would like to make this a multi-day adventure.

During the winter months, Canadian highways can become icy and snowy, presenting a number of hazards. Despite the increased traffic, summer is the best time for driving vacations.

What to do in Edmonton

Directions to Edmonton from Calgary

Traveling from Calgary to Edmonton by Automobile

The distance from downtown Calgary to downtown Edmonton is just under 300 kilometers. There are a few villages and/or cities to stop in and explore along the way of this easy drive. You'll be a bit nearer if you're coming from the Calgary International Airport.

The Calgary International Airport and the city itself both have numerous car rental agencies. Since there is little to differentiate the major rental car companies, we advise using a metasearch engine like Priceline.com to find the best deal.

In addition to the conventional car-rental agencies, there is also a website called Turo. It's possible that this could open up some previously unavailable rental car options, or at least lower prices. While we typically opt for one of the major rental car chains, we recognize that Turo presents an alternative option.

Recreational vehicle trip from Calgary to Edmonton

Renting an RV or campervan can provide you with more of a "home on wheels." Canada's vast territory and abundance of camping options make RV travel a popular pastime here.

Some possibilities are listed below:

  • CanaDream is a major Canadian RV rental service. From the smallest to the largest, they have it all.
  • When it comes to recreational vehicles, RVezy is like Airbnb. A recreational vehicle owned by someone else is rented by you.
  • One kind of campervan rental is Karma Campervans. In most cases, the van is a standard passenger vehicle with two seats up front and a bed and kitchenette in the back.

Bus Trip from Calgary to Edmonton

The bus is an alternative to driving yourself from Calgary to Edmonton if you'd rather take it easy on the trip. Buses between these two cities are some of the most accessible in the province.

The Red Arrow, the Cold Shot, and the Rider Express are the three bus companies that serve the route. The Red Arrow is the priciest choice at around , while the other two options are both around $43. Busbud is the best way to research your travel options.

Intimate Shuttle Service from Calgary to Edmonton

Traveling to Edmonton or Calgary in the comfort of a private transfer may be the best option if you want to kick back and take it easy on the way there.

Below are some suggestions for private transfer services:

With prices starting at $500, Quest Limos offers dependable and secure transportation via fully trained chauffeurs who are familiar with the roads and routes between Calgary and Edmonton.

From Calgary to Edmonton, Signature Limo provides luxurious transportation in Lincoln MKTs, Cadillac Escalades, and shuttle buses. Corporate and frequent flier discounts are also available.

You won't find everything you need here if you're looking for services like these, though. One can choose from a wide variety of alternatives.

Ridesharing from Calgary to Edmonton.

Poparide's notoriety is rising rapidly. Ridesharing across Canada is possible with com, and that includes the trip from Calgary to Edmonton. One-way fares typically cost around $30, though this varies widely.

What to Do in Edmonton Photos of Edmonton, Alberta

Trip Itinerary: Edmonton to Calgary

In our opinion, the best part of taking a road trip in your own car is stopping at all the breathtaking sights along the way. Many interesting stops await you along the way if you have the luxury of time and mobility:

Red Deer

In terms of distance from Edmonton and Calgary, Red Deer is nearly in the middle. It is now Alberta's fourth largest city, but it was the province's third to reach 100,000 residents. Depending on your interests and available time, there is a wide variety of things to do in a city of this size. Choices that tend to be well-liked are:

  • Skiing and snowboarding, snow tubing, a terrain park, and a cozy lodge are all available at Alberta's largest non-mountain ski resort, Canyon. January through March is peak tourism season.
  • Waskasoo Park: If you're looking for some green space in the middle of the city, you can visit the Kerry Wood Nature Centre, the Allen Bungalow, the Gaetz Lakes Sanctuary, and the Historic Fort Normandeau.
  • There is a par 72 championship golf course and 420 acres of forested parkland to enjoy at the River Bend Golf and Recreation Area. It is a section of Waskaoo Park as well.
  • Alberta's first bird sanctuary, Gaetz Lakes Bird Sanctuary, protects nearly 300 acres of land and features hiking trails and bird blinds.
  • If you'd rather stay inside, the Red Deer Museum & Art Gallery is a fantastic resource for learning about the city.
  • Sports fans can learn about famous athletes from Alberta in an engaging way at the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame and Museum.

Spectacular View of Sylvan Lake

One of the most visited lakes in the province, Sylvan Lake is a great place to spend some time relaxing by the water. Located only 25 km (16 mi) west of Red Deer, it is visited by over 1 5,000,000 people come here every year. For many reasons, including sunbathing, swimming, water-skiing, and more, the lake is always crowded.

Calgary Stampede, Alberta

Provincial Heritage Site Stephansson House

Stephan Stephansson, also known as "the poet of the Rocky Mountains," lived in the Stephansson House Provincial Historic Site, which is located in Alberta. His home is like stepping back in time to 1927, with its original furnishings, peaceful landscape, the aroma of freshly baked goods, and, of course, the poetry of Stephan himself.


Reynolds-Alberta Museum, Alberta Central Railway Museum, and Canada's Aviation Hall of Fame are just a few of the interesting museums that can be found in this small town not far from Edmonton. Edmonton is also the location of the Edmonton International Raceway, the only NASCAR-approved racing facility in Western Canada. Not only can you sign up to watch a race, but you can also sign up to take a 10-lap test drive in a stock car.

The Best of Edmonton's Attractions

There is a wide variety of activities and attractions to enjoy once you arrive in Edmonton, from shopping at North America's largest mall to going for a bike ride in Canada's largest urban park.

Check out our feature guide, Where to Stay and What to Do in Edmonton, for more information.

Activities in Calgary

Calgary also has a lot to offer visitors coming from the opposite direction, such as a relaxing float down the picturesque Bow River and a visit to the National Music Centre to learn about the history of Canadian music.

Check out our featured guide, Things to Do in Calgary, for more information on attractions and lodging options in the area.

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