Day 5: Calgary
We spent the last day of our Alberta adventure in the city of Calgary. Having returned back to our cousin’s home there the night before, we nourished ourselves with homemade sweet zongzi, neutral red bean steamed buns, and savory tomato soup for brunch.
We toured through the city by car, passing skyscrapers and an anti-cannabis protest in Chinatown.
From Prince’s Island Park, we started on foot. The park is encircled by the same Bow River we visited on our first day in Banff. The river flooded the entire park and downtown Calgary in 2013 and the restoration process is still in the works. Nonetheless, the park was a peaceful oasis of baby geese, morning joggers, live guitar tunes, and Pokémon go-ers.
Calgary has a sizable Chinese population and the Chinatown spills out quite a ways from the city center. Coco, a Chinese bubble tea brand, just opened a location in Calgary so we went for our version of afternoon tea.
We had passed by an outdoor food festival on our drive into the city so decided to circle back to see what the buzz was about. Turns out it was Veg Fest, a vegan lifestyle festival.
We wandered around the The CORE which is a shopping center with an arched glass roof and garden on the top floor. One one side of the garden, kiddos were monkeying around on the playground. On the other side, older adults were dancing and playing cards and gomoku.
While waiting for a table for dinner, we shopped around at the Asian supermarket next door. There we found fun varieties of tuzitang (a milk candy/childhood essential) like green tea and tiramisu. We also grabbed cranberry raspberry almond yogurt kitkats, hokkaido milk chews, ramen snacks, and spicy tofu, which in addition to the Royce sakura strawberry and sakura white chocolate-covered almonds our cousin bought us earlier, would make for a glorious future taste-testing session.
For dinner we stuffed ourselves at another China import, Mongolian Hot Pot. The chicken broth was dangerously delicious and so richly flavorful that the hot pot broth at American restaurants seems like water in comparison.
We caught an early night’s sleep for an early morning flight back to the States. All in all, our Alberta adventure was the perfect trifecta of family, nature, and a sprinkle of city.