Canadian Badlands Day Trip From Calgary

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Discover hoodoo rock formations and dinosaur fossils in the Canadian Badlands of Alberta. On this day trip by coach from Calgary, travel through the lunar landscapes of Drumheller, known as the Dinosaur Capital of the World, and visit Horseshoe Canyon. Walk a pedestrian suspension bridge built for coal miners, and learn about the regions unusual geology from a guide. At the world-class Royal Tyrrell Museum, chat with scientists about how fossils are collected and assembled, and even stumble upon a few dino bones on a guided trail.

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Meet your guide and board your air-conditioned coach near Calgary Tower for your day trip to the Canadian Badlands of Alberta. Traveling east, take in views of expansive golden prairies before the landscape shifts to Drumhellers striated hills and hoodoo rock formations.

Forming over millions of years, these fragile sandstone pillars capped with large stones stand anywhere from 16 to 23 feet (5 to 7 meters) tall. Find out from your guide about where the name hoodoo comes from, and which indigenous tribes regard them as petrified giants that attack intruders at night.

Disembark for views of Horseshoe Canyon, one of Drumhellers most popular sights, and learn about its geology, history, and native plants and animals at the Interpretative Centre.

Next, head to the town of Drumheller, aka Dinosaur Capital of the World, and visit Royal Tyrrell Museum, home to 130,000 fossils of more than 300 different species, many of them dinosaurs. Weave through impressive exhibits and watch scientists assemble a raptor skeleton. You'll receive a behind-the-scenes look at what happens to fossils after theyre unearthed from the nearby UNESCO World Heritage site of Dinosaur Provincial Park.

Want to find fossils yourself? Try the museums Dinosite tour (own expense. when available), a guided 2-mile (3-km) walk on hilly terrain through the badlands, where youll spot dinosaur bones in the ground and learn about ancient Alberta.

After time for lunch (own expense) at the museum, leave Drumheller and head to the Atlas Coal Mine for a guided tour of Canada's most complete historic coal mine. Home to the country's last standing wooden coal tipple, this national site gives insight into the dirty, and sometimes deadly, work of coal miners before returning to Calgary.

Inclusions for Canadian Badlands Day Trip From Calgary

  • Professional guide
  • Admission to Royal Tyrrell Museum
  • Transport by air-conditioned coach

Exclusions for Canadian Badlands Day Trip From Calgary

  • Optional Dinosite Tour at Royal Tyrrell Museum (USD 10 per person, paid directly when available)
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
  • Gratuities (optional)

Additional Info

Confirmation will be received at time of booking, unless booked within 1 day of travel. In this case confirmation will be received as soon as possible, subject to availability

Cancellation Policy
  • If you cancel within 3 calendar days (72 hours) of the scheduled departure time, the cancellation charge will be 100% of the undiscounted tour price.
  • If you cancel between 4 to 7 Calendar days before scheduled tour departure,the cancellation charge will be 50% of the undiscounted tour price.
  • If you cancel at least 8 calendar days in advance of the scheduled departure time, there is no cancellation fee. You will receive Full Refund for the paid amount.
  • Please note that in case of No show, the cancellation charge will be 100% of the listed tour fare.
  • Please note tours booked using discount coupon codes will be non refundable.

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See All 22 Traveler reviews

  • A great and insightful tour to learn about the Badlands, which is about a two-hour drive from downtown Calgary. The hoodoos were magical, and also included a stopover at the Atlas Mines not recommended if one is claustrophobic and/or afraid of the dark, and this tour involves a lot of walking on an incline, so wear sturdy hiking shoes. The last stop was at the impressive Royal Tyrell Museum -- worth the entire trip alone! Their dinosaur fossil collection is absolutely the best in the world not to miss to visit when you are in Calgary.

  • Terrific day! Great guides!

  • This tour was offered by Anderson Vacations. The driver arrived on time at the Calgary Tower. He did not introduced himself. He did not wear a name tag. We drove off to the Badlands WITHOUT any commentary stopping at Horseshoe Canyon. It was like looking at something prehistoric. Next stop was the Atlas coal mine. Our NO-NAME driver gave us the sticker for the tour and pointed over there. We were not provided any guidance as to where to meet and what would be involved in the tour. The coal mine guide was a former miner. We scaled up the hillside next to the coal conveyor. It was cardio time! We were shown how the miners lived. At the end of the tour, there was a train ride. Our group of FIVE were not told that this excursion was not part of our tour! When the train stopped, I was informed that our no-name tour guide was waiting for me. The coal mine personnel radioed ahead. As I proceeded down the hillside, I could see our NON-PROFESSIONAL tour guide drive off!!!!!! Never in all my years of travel with tour companies had I encountered such a situation. Once at the ticket area, the visibly distressed coal mine personnel tried to find the Anderson Vacations employee. After 45-60 minutes of stress, this so-called professional returned. It's all good, he stated. You just left me! There were five people on the tour. We continued to the Royal Tyrrell museum and subsequently back to Calgary. On my last day in Calgary, Anderson Vacations was called. I spoke to someone of authority, Shannon, who was given an earful of my disastrous encounter with their organization. Not only did this so-called professional guide leave me, but he also sucked on cigarettes then came into our small van as the second-hand smoke permeated the vehicle. I would recommend this tour with a professional guide, but hope that Anderson Vacations puts this tour guide clown in the unemployment line!!!!!

  • Good day trip to do while in Calgary. Was a bit disappointing because the driver didn't know a lot of the history to the areas we went, which a lot of my Viator tours they have. Plenty of signs to read though. Mine tour was great as an ex miner was our guide. Worth doing

  • A really interesting tour - everything as advertised: Drumheller, the Atlas Coal Mine, the hoodoo rock formations and the Dinosaur museum were all well worth a visit. Compared to other tours we have taken, we were surprised at the lack of commentary on the way out of Calgary - we learned a lot at the various stops - but not much about the area as a whole. hence the 4 stars.

  • We tagged this day trip onto a tour we were taking of Western Canada. Boy we were glad we did. The trip went smoothly thanks to our guide. The coach was comfortable and the sites we visited were worth it. The highlight for us was the Tyrrell Dinosaur museum. This is a world class exhibit and not to be missed if you are in the area. The other stops were picturesque Horseshoe Canyon, HooDoos. Mine tour was interesting and instructive thanks to our guide Sean. Great day. Money well spent.

  • Rent a car instead!
    The tour guide is not a tour guide, he made little to no commentary, he was just a bus driver. So you don't get any additional information, just like going there yourself.
    The tour says that you will have time to purchase and go on a Dinosite tour at the Tyrell Museum, that is incorrect. The Dinosite Tour starts to 2pm and the tour is 90minutes long, but you have to be on the bus by 2:40pm. Therefore you would not be on the bus in time.
    The Atlas Coal Mine is a very good tour - highly recommend that - but instead of getting this company to drive you there, just drive yourself.
    The Horseshoe Cannon and The Hoodoos, are a great site to see as well - but drive yourself so you have your own time frame of how long you want to spend there.

  • We really enjoyed the day out. It was good to see a different part of Canada after a week in the Rockies.

  • The tour took us to Horseshoe Canyon, Horse Thief Canyon, Atlas Coal Mine with a tour of the site, the Drumheller Hoodoos and the Royal Tyrrell Museum.
    It was a great day tour - just the right number of things to see and do - remember to take your camera!
    I got my lunch at the museum and still had time to look at each exhibition.

  • Great visit! Tour operator was a great help

  • See All 22 Reviews

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