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Calgary Motorhome Rental

Calgary, an Albertan city that goes by the nickname of ‘Cowtown’, offers the perfect blend of a thriving cultural hub and a portal to Canada’s phenomenal landscapes. 


Hiring a motorhome in Calgary

With population of around 1.6 million people, Calgary is larger than the Alberta capital of Edmonton, which has just 1.3 million and is only about 3 hours away by car. The city is perhaps most well known for the annual Calgary Stampede, a summertime festival that embraces the city’s ‘cowboy’ culture. With 11 RV fleets in Calgary, Motorhome Republic can help travelers find the perfect campervan or RV rental, regardless of the number of people in the group or the budget for the holiday. 


What to do with your Calgary motorhome hire

One of the best places to go with your motorhome from Calgary is straight to Banff, a resort town in the Banff National Park just 1.5 hours away. The national park itself offers quintessential Canadian views that will take your breath away, with azure blue lakes, lush forests and looming mountains like something out of a postcard. Whether it’s summer or winter, a trip on the Banff gondola is a must for unforgettable views of the Canadian Rockies. 


At the border of Alberta and British Columbia, you’ll find the Columbia Icefields 4.5 hours from Calgary. The glacier runs alongside Highway 93, and once there, you can take a guided walk or drive (in a specialized vehicle) across this seemingly endless display of ice. 


Edmonton is another worthy stop in your motorhome, as it’s just three hours from Calgary and offers a myriad of activities and attractions no matter the time of year. Visit the zoo, the Royal Alberta Museum, the corn maze, and Hawrelak Park, or cheer on the Edmonton Prospects at a softball game in summer. 


The Canmore Caverns are only an hour west of Calgary and make for a great stop at the start or end of your trip in summer or winter. The most popular attraction here is the Rat’s Nest Cave, an undeveloped mountain grotto where you can take a guided tour of the system without handrails, built-in lights or walkways for a more natural excursion. 

In case you have some time to spare, you could go a bit further to the West to explore Vancouver or go South and cross the border to travel through the United States.


Best times to hire a motorhome in Calgary

Depending on whether you’re in Alberta for the snow or the sunshine, your best time to visit can vary hugely. 


The warmest months are June through to August, which is when most events are scheduled and when temperatures average between low 70s and high 60s (Fahrenheit). You can get quite a bit of rain throughout this season so be prepared for wet days, too. 


For snow sports enthusiasts, November to March can be the perfect time for a trip with average highs reaching between roughly 25 and 35 degrees Fahrenheit. 


Shoulder seasons in spring and fall can be a little chilly at times but are often cheaper.


Calgary Campers: Rent a Motorhome

Calgary is the perfect place to hire an RV and hit the open road for a Canadian adventure. Arrive by air and head out on one of the several main highways, which all come to a crossroads in the city. The Canadian Rockies nearby are a great destination, best explored via the freedom of a motorhome rental.

A Growing City

As a wealthy region that popped up quickly in the prairies following the oil boom, it’s easy to dismiss Calgary as all flash and no substance – but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Visitors will enjoy the cowboy culture and western friendliness, and Calgary is becoming increasingly cosmopolitan as economic prospects expand far beyond oil.

People flock to Calgary for the yearly Stampede, one of the world’s biggest rodeos. They also come for the nearby Canadian Rockies and many ski resorts – hence the added convenience of travelling in a motorhome/RV. The city offers an increasingly diverse dining scene, youthful nightlife, clean streets and modern infrastructure.

Stay in Calgary

The hotel range in Calgary is quite standard. Most chains, from budget to high-end, have a location in the city and are often used by workers on business. For something a little different, try the Fairmont Palliser. While still a chain, it’s located in a landmark heritage building. The Wicked Hostel near Stampede Park is a good option for solo travellers on a budget, as hostels and bread & breakfast options are limited. Calgary is extremely RV-friendly and there are numerous campground options. The Calaway RV Park & Campground is near a family amusement park, while Coyote Creek Golf & RV Resort is ideal for those with a set of clubs.

Annual Calendar: Beyond the Stampede

The Calgary Stampede is the biggest event of the year: a 10-day celebration including live music, rodeo competitions, chuck-wagon racing, agricultural exhibits and plenty more. It’s held at Stampede Park, which doesn’t sit vacant for the rest of the year. It’s an extensive event space which hosts sporting contests, shows and concerts. The Calgary Folk Music Festival is held in July in Prince’s Island Park, the Calgary International Children’s Festival at the Epcor Centre in autumn, along with a range of cultural festivals celebrating different parts of the world - Afrikadey, Fiestaval, the Chinatown Street Festival and Carifest.

Calgary Eats

You have plenty of choice if you want to eat out. The culinary scene has certainly expanded over the past few years and there are some gems to be found. Alberta’s agriculture and farming adds depth to the menu, with local produce and meats and farmers’ markets popping up in the city. Don’t be afraid to jump in your RV and explore the city. There are restaurants with cuisines from all over the world, with a special interest in Asian and Mediterranean. Favourites in downtown Calgary include innovative Teatro, the scrumptious soul food at Model Milk, and Rush with its fantastic visible wine cellar.

Cowboys and Culture

Calgary is located between the Canadian Rockies to the west and prairies to the east, an important pit-stop on the Trans-Canada Highway between Vancouver and Canada’s eastern provinces. The Bow and Elbow rivers converge in the city, putting it at the crossroads of paths both man-made and natural.

Oil is how Calgary made its money, but the city is diversifying and no longer a one-trick pony. The flashy cowboy culture remains, and there are certainly a lot of big belt buckles about during the Stampede. However, there is more depth to the population and culture in Calgary now, as the city expands and the economy branches out. Its people come from all walks of life and have put their stamp on this growing urban centre.

Let Calgary Entertain You

There is somewhat of an Olympic legacy in Calgary, which was home to the 1988 Winter Olympics. The Olympic Plaza is a lovely place to sit outside in summer or go ice-skating in the winter. Located centrally, it also hosts many special events and festivals. The Olympic Park offers great views of the city from the top of the ski jump, as well as an on-site museum and skiing and snowboarding facilities in the winter.

Glenbow Museum is the place to go for the history of the city and plenty more. Besides travelling and permanent exhibits of cultural, military, indigenous and natural histories, it houses a lot of art with a collection of over 33,000 works. There is always something new to see - and the museum is very close to the centre of Calgary, so just pop in while shopping and sightseeing.

Amazing mountain resorts are also close by. Jump in your RV and head west on the Trans-Canada Highway. This will get you to Banff in 90 minutes - just one of the lovely alpine towns in the collection of National Parks which cover the Canadian Rockies. Snow-sports rule in the winter, while in the summer you can enjoy hiking, climbing, fishing and boating, as well as the great scenery. Rent an RV for great freedom of schedule and travel in this wonderful area.

Finding Your Way around Calgary

Trains and buses are the best options for getting around, unless you have a rental vehicle - in which case, the city is very driveable by car or camper. The public transit system incorporates buses and a light rail network called the C-Train. This is free for 14 blocks along the length of 7th Avenue, and elsewhere it costs $3 for a 90-minute transit ticket, which also gives you access to the buses.

Looking to get in or out of the city? Planes arrive to and depart Calgary International Airport frequently, with flights to and from major North American and European cities. Inter-city buses such as Coach Canada also run routes through Calgary.

The Weather Outlook

The climate in Calgary is quite warm when compared to many Canadian cities. Summers are pleasantly balmy but not sweltering, and cool in the evenings. Winter is cold, but not bitterly so, and quite dry with periods of snow and thaw. There are many sunny days year-round, so bring your sunglasses!

Get the Best RV for Your Calgary Vacation

Calgary has numerous motorhome rental companies. A handy tip for sorting the best rental is to assess exactly what you want, from 2-berth to larger, standard to luxury, and searching online.  You will find motorhomes from all kinds of companies, including Canadream, Fraserway RV Rentals and Canadream.

Canada Campervan Road Trip – let us guide you

Take heed! These simple tips will help you make the most of your motorhome holiday.

  • Brush up a bit on Canada’s road rules before driving. Although they are a Commonwealth country, Canadians drive on the right - this is the most important rule to remember!

  • When driving in the Rockies and other low population density areas, try to stock up on fuel when you can, in case you leave civilisation behind for a while.

  • Familiarise yourself with the vehicle before leaving the depot. You don’t want to realise too late that you don’t know how to empty the black water.

  • Driving in winter? Make sure you have a survival kit in your vehicle - this is recommended for anyone driving in Canada during the colder months.

Calgary Motorhome Rental Brands

Real Value RV, Fraserway RV, Compass Campers

The variety of campervans and motorhomes available at Real Value RV, Fraserway RV and Compass Campers in Calgary ensures you’ll find the right rental vehicle for the right price. Real Value RV and Compass Campers have a similar range of motorhomes, starting out with two-berth RVs in a range of sizes, and including three- to six-berth rentals fitted with their own on board bathroom facilities, basic kitchens and luxurious interiors. Fraserway RV adds its own immense selection of rental vehicles, such as a simple van conversion for budget trips, a truck camper for small family getaways, and large C- and A-Class luxury motorhomes that resemble hotel rooms on the inside with more than enough space for four or six people. The Calgary depot for these brands is at 536 Kingsview Way SE, Airdrie, which is roughly 20 kilometres from the airport, a trip of 20 minutes or so. Your transfer is complimentary whether you’re coming from the airport or a nearby hotel, all you need to do is arrange this in advance with the company. Note that if you are flying in from an international destination, you cannot pick up your rental on the same day so you must book a hotel or motel for your first night. The office here is open 8.30am to 5pm Monday to Friday, and on Saturdays from 8.30am to 4pm.

Ambassador RV

Ambassador RV specialises in C-Class motorhomes for extremely comfortable road trips around Canada. The smallest of the RVs is a 22-foot slideout with room for up to six people, a bathroom and well equipped kitchen. The largest motorhome available through Ambassador is a 29-foot six-berth Ford luxury home on wheels. There are also 24-foot and 27-foot versions on offer if you don’t need quite so much space. Ambassador doesn’t have a physical depot in Calgary, so when you rent a motorhome with this brand they will meet you at Calgary Airport when you land or at your hotel to deliver your RV to you. At the end of your hire period, you will either leave the motorhome in airport parking or at your hotel - these details will all be discussed when you collect the vehicle. If you are looking to pick up or drop off your motorhome on a Sunday, public holiday, or outside normal office hours, you will be charged a fee of $100. 

Cruise Canada RV Rentals

Cruise Canada has three categories of RV rentals - compact, standard, and large. The compact RV is a 19-foot three-berth motorhome with ABS brakes, a fresh-water toilet, shower, a microwave and cooktop burners and automatic transmission. The next size up is a 25-foot maximum five-person RV with a bathroom, small kitchen, V8 engine, power brakes and power steering. A large RV from Cruise Canada is up to 30 feet in length, has room for up to seven people and all the features and mod cons to create an on-road home away from home. The depot is located in Calgary at 2980 26th Street NorthEast, which is 12 kilometres from the airport or a 20 minute taxi ride. You will need to make your own way to the depot, which is open Monday to Saturday from 9am to 5pm and closed on Sundays and public holidays. Cruise Canada does not allow for same day pick ups if you have just flown in from overseas, so be sure to book accommodation for your first night if that’s the case. If you are late in returning the motorhome, you may face a fee of $25 per hour.

Go West RV Centre and Casual Camping

Go West RV and Casual Camping share a depot at 540 Meridian Road North East in Calgary, roughly 15 minutes from the airport. These two brands represent one of the largest ranges of motorhomes and campervans you will find in one place in Canada. Casual Camping offer motorhomes of between 20 and 24 feet with space for five to six people and on-board bathrooms. Go West RV’s biggest motorhomes are 30 feet, and come in double and triple slide configurations with room for up to six people. These are followed by RVs in the 20-something foot range, as well as a handful of two-berth converted vans, compact motorhomes, and sprinter vans. Most of these RV rentals are from big brand names such as Winnebago, Jayco and Coachmen. The office is open from 8am to 4.30pm Monday to Saturday, and is closed on Sundays and public holidays. Transfers are available during scheduled pick-up and drop-off times and only from airport-based hotels.

Canadream RV Rentals, West Coast Mountain Campers and Enviro Campers

Open from 8am to 5pm Monday to Saturday from October to the end of April, and 8am to 6pm seven days a week for the rest of the year (May through September), Canadream, West Coast Campers and Enviro Campers offer a doorway to the Canadian Rockies and surrounds. The depot is at 292154 Crosspointe Drive, Rocky View County, which is 11 kilometres from the airport and 25 kilometres from the city. An airport taxi to the depot will cost you around $35, or you can take advantage of the complimentary transfer service from Calgary Airport or selected airport hotels. Canadream cover a range of RV options, from the largest six-berth maxi motorhome right down to the standard two-berth van camper. West Coast Mountain Campers have three deluxe motorhome options, including compact super van conversions, maxi motorhomes and mid-sized motorhomes. Enviro Campers add their own selection of campers and RVs with everything from standard van conversions fit for two, to 30-foot motorhomes with all the features to make your trip incredibly comfortable. Be sure to check in online before picking up your motorhome to cut down on the processing time and get on the road sooner.