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Immerse yourself in the culture of Canada’s Northern Plains as you explore the heritage of its native people and cowboy country during this 8-hour day trip from Calgary. Discover the heritage of Alberta’s First Nations at the UNESCO site of Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, where you can explore the 6,000-year-old practice of buffalo jumping. Then learn about cowboy history at the Old West city of Fort Macleod, and at Heritage Park Historical Village, a site where you can explore recreations of Canadian cities from the 1860s through the 1950s. This heritage-focused excursion also includes transport from Calgary and a guide.

Highlights

  • Day trip by coach bus to southern Alberta, known as Canada’s cowboy country, from Calgary
  • Visit the UNESCO site of Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump and learn about First Nations heritage from a local guide
  • Enjoy lunch (own expense) in the Old West town of Fort Macleod
  • Explore Heritage Park Historical Village and experience Canada’s history from the 1860s through the 1950s
  • Capture beautiful scenery of the Rocky Mountains and Great Plains

What You Can Expect

First Nations Heritage and Old West History Day Trip from Calgary

Discover the First Nations culture

Discover the culture and history of Canada’s wide-open Northern Plains during this 8-hour day trip from Calgary. This deep dive into the heritage of the First Nations tribes and cowboys that once roamed these lands will provide a unique perspective on the culture of Canada’s Old West.
Start your day by meeting your guide and coach at the Calgary Tower at 8:30am, continuing on a scenic drive out into the open plains and grazing pastures of southern Alberta. After about two hours you’ll arrive at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump. 
This fascinating landmark explores the practice of 'buffalo jumping,' a method by which the native peoples of the Northern Plains drove buffalo herds off cliffs to obtain food and clothing. Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump happens to be one of the most significant of such sites in North America, offering unique insight into how this practice allowed the tribes to live off the land. Spend time investigating the site’s interpretive center on your own, or tag along with your guide as they provide commentary on the life and culture of people that once lived in the foothills at the base of the Rocky Mountains.
Head next into cowboy country to visit Fort Macleod, a town settled as a Northwest Mounted Police outpost in 1892, where you can purchase lunch (at your own expense) and stroll the town’s historic Main Street. 
Continue with a return to Calgary, where you’ll explore the Heritage Park Historical Village, a living history museum set on 127 acres (51 hectares) with more than 180 exhibits. The site’s creators have painstakingly recreated a variety of Canadian cities and settlements from the 1860s and 1950s as they once existed to help bring history to life.
Stroll thorough an 1860s-era fur-trading settlement and see an area that was once the home of a First Nations encampment. Then check out an 1880s settlement that pre-dated the railroads, along with a village from 1910 that illustrates the impact of the train lines on the area’s development. You can also head to the Heritage Town Square, where costumed characters help bring the various exhibits to life, or head to Gasoline Alley Museum to view the collection of classic automobiles. Kids are sure to enjoy the park’s Conklin Lakeview Amusements Antique Midway, offering rides on a vintage steam train, a Ferris wheel and a ride called ‘The Whip,’ considered to be an iconic fairground attraction.
Spend around 90 minutes at the Heritage Park Historical Village before receiving a drop-off back at the Calgary Tower.

Customer Reviews

Andrzej J

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2016

I highly advise this tour to anyone interested in the history of the region.
The Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump is a great World Heritage Site. The location, exhibition are guides are amazing. I have learnt a lot. The skansen in Calgary is well-done, engaging, especially for school kids.

Ana C

4 star rating: Recommended July 2016

I had a great time our driver was great and answered all our questions. Worth doing on a Wednesday to see the dancing it is amazing. The only down side was lack of time we felt there wasnt enough time at both places.

Ruth M

4 star rating: Recommended July 2016

Too much for one day. First Nations - great but to include the Heritage Village as well - too much

Eileen P

3 star rating: Worth doing July 2015

Good tour - but could have spent more time at the Buffalo jump instead of time spent at Fort. The trip to Heritage Park seemed more of a taster due to time constraints. One of our fellow travellers was somewhat physically impaired - and found some of the tour extremely difficult.

Wild Wally Spain

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better August 2016

It was a very long drive just to see the buffalo jump. Fort Mcloud was missed out and didnt really have long enough at Heritage Park

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