The main Visitor Information Services , part of the Calgary Convention and Visitors Bureau, is on the main floor of the Calgary Tower Centre in the Calgary Tower, 139 Tower Centre, 101-9th Ave SW (mid-May to mid-Sept daily 8am-8pm; mid-Sept to mid-May Mon-Fri 8am-5pm, Sat & Sun 9am-5pm; tel 263-8510 in Calgary, tel 1-800/661-8888 elsewhere in North America; recorded information tel 262-2766). It doles out huge amounts of information and provides a free accommodation-finding service. You can also access Travel Alberta on the Internet ( www.travelalberta.com ). Minor offices operate at the airport (Arrivals level), the Canada Olympic Park and on the westbound side of the Trans-Canada Highway between 58th and 62nd Street NE. The informative monthly Where Calgary is free from shops, hotels and the Visitors Bureau.
For all its rapid expansion, Calgary is a well-planned and straightforward city engineered around an inevitable grid . The metropolitan area is divided into quadrants (NW, NE, SE and SW) with the Bow River separating north from south, Centre Street-Macleod Trail east from west. Downtown - and virtually everything there is to see and do - is in a small area in or close to the SW quadrant. Streets run north-south, avenues east-west, with numbers increasing as you move out from the centre. As with Edmonton, the last digits of the first number refer to the house number - thus 237-8th Ave SE is on 2nd Street at no. 37, close to the intersection with 8th Avenue. It's easy to overlook the quadrant, so check addresses carefully.