Canmore has changed a great deal since it was founded in 1883, evolving from a gritty railway depot to a coal mining town and then finally to an international resort destination. As a center first for the railroad and the industry, Canmore was a place where you played hard and worked hard. Like many mining towns in southern Alberta and southeastern BC, the community was faced with many economic ups and downs. Over the past century, its history as a coal mining community has included boom-town architecture, interesting characters, exciting events, and mine disasters. With the closure of the mine in 1979 and Canmore serving as a host community for the 1988 Winter Olympics, the community has continued to evolve. Today, it could be argued that as a resort community, we play harder than we work as we enjoy the incredible mountain vistas and recreational amenities that Canmore offers today.
We invite you to experience our rich and colourful past by exploring Canmore's built heritage and tracing the continued evolution of our community. In addition to introducing you to the Canmore Museum, our Historical Downtown Walking Tour will take you to 17 places located within in 2 km radius of the Canmore Museum, each with its own story to tell as part of the cultural and heritage mosaic of Canmore.