From Newcomer to Local: How to Live in Okotoks

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Getting to Know Okotoks

Okotoks is a shining example of a town that captures the essence of warmth, community, and natural beauty.

It is located along the banks of the Sheep River. Okotoks is a charming town that offers a perfect balance between the tranquillity of nature and the amenities of modern living.

Its name originates from the Blackfoot First Nation’s word “O’kotok.”This means “rock,” inspired by the Big Rock, a massive glacial erratic found in the area.

The town is characterized by its breathtaking landscapes. It features sprawling parks, extensive walking trails, and proximity to the Canadian Rockies.

Okotoks is also a haven for outdoor enthusiasts! It offers numerous recreational activities, such as golfing, hiking, and fishing.

Residents of Okotoks enjoy a low cost of living and a high quality of life. They have access to excellent private and public schools, healthcare facilities, and cultural events. The town’s local businesses are being strongly supported by its active community, which is boosting the local economy.

Come and discover the charm of Okotoks for yourself! Read on to learn more about Okotoks and prepare to be captivated by this destination.

Finding a Place to Call Home

how to live in okotoks finding place

If you’re looking for a place to live in Okotoks, whether it’s for rent or purchase, there are a whole lot of options available to match your preferences. To start your search, consider following these steps:

Determine Your Budget

To avoid disappointment, it’s important to determine your housing budget before searching for a home. This way, you’ll be able to narrow down your options and find a place that fits within your financial means.

Choose Your Preferred Neighbourhood

Consider what you’re looking for in a neighbourhood. Take into account your preferred proximity to schools, amenities, or natural spaces.

Do you crave the tranquillity of a peaceful suburban street, or are you more drawn to the hustle and bustle of a trendy downtown district? You may prefer a neighbourhood with an active arts and culture scene, or one surrounded by natural beauty.

Whatever your preferences are, Okotoks has a community that can meet your needs.

But with so many options, it can take much work to pick a neighbourhood.

It’s all good! Our Okotoks neighbourhood guide can help you. It will help you gain a better understanding of each neighbourhood’s character.

Decide on Your Must-Haves

Make a list of the features you must have in a home, such as a certain number of bedrooms or a large backyard. Consider other aspects like the location’s proximity to schools or public transportation.

Also, prioritize features that align with your lifestyle. These could be a home office space for remote work or a spacious kitchen for culinary enthusiasts.

Work With the Right Realtor 

If you decide to purchase a home, finding a reputable realtor is crucial.

Griffin Real Estate, the #1 Realtor in Okotoks, can help you. Our team consists of skilled professionals who can assist you in navigating the housing market. We’re also here to help you locate the ideal home to fulfill your requirements.

We understand that finding a new home can be overwhelming, and we’re here to make the process as easy and stress-free as possible.

Start Your Search 

After working with the right realtor, the next step is to start viewing potential homes that meet your criteria.

If you visit homes in person, you can gain a better understanding of their characteristics and determine if they align with your needs.

We can help you schedule visits to homes that fit your budget, preferred neighbourhoods, and must-haves.

Close the Deal

When you’ve found a home you love, it’s time to make an offer. Collaborate with your real estate agent to create a request that considers any required repairs or upgrades.

Once your offer has been accepted, it’s important to complete the purchase process. This can include finalizing financing, conducting a home inspection, and signing the paperwork.

Getting Around in Okotoks: Transportation Options

Transportation options in Okotoks offer residents convenient ways to get around town. Whether you prefer to drive your car, take public transit, or ride your bike, there are options for everyone.


One of the most popular transportation options in Okotoks is driving. The town has a well-maintained road system, and residents benefit from the proximity to Calgary, located only a short drive away.

Additionally, Okotoks has easy access to Highway 2, which connects the town to other major centres in the province.

According to the 2016 census, 89% of Okotoks residents use a car as their primary mode of transportation.

Public Transit

If you prefer public transit, the Okotoks Transit system operates five routes.

The public transit has service from early morning until late evening, Monday through Saturday. The transit system is affordable and convenient.

It also has regular stops throughout the town and connections to Calgary Transit.


For those who enjoy cycling, Okotoks has an extensive network of multi-use pathways. These pathways connect various neighbourhoods and attractions.

The town’s cycling infrastructure includes bike lanes, paved shoulders, and shared-use pathways.It provides safe and enjoyable cycling options for residents and visitors.

Joining the Community

happiness group of people huddle and smiling together

Joining the community in Okotoks is an excellent way to feel connected to this charming town and its friendly residents.

Okotoks is a close-knit community with a population of over 30,000 people, and it’s known for its small-town feel and welcoming atmosphere.

Its welcoming and friendly atmosphere is reflected in the smiles of its residents. Its residents embrace newcomers with open arms, making you feel like a part of their close-knit community from the very first day.

According to the 2021 Municipal Census, Okotoks’ population has increased by 3.5% since 2019. This indicates that more people are moving to the town and joining its passionate community.

There are ways to get involved in the Okotoks community. For example, you can join a local sports team, and you can volunteer at a community center or attend town hall meetings.

The Okotoks Recreation Centre offers programs and activities for people of all ages. They offer programs from fitness classes to art workshops.

The town’s vibrant arts and culture scene also provides plenty of opportunities to get involved. It includes attending local theatre productions or art exhibits.

If you’re looking to give back to the community and become a volunteer, the following organizations welcome volunteers:

Exploring Employment Options: Job Opportunities in Okotoks

Okotoks offers a range of employment opportunities across various industries.

Okotoks has a diverse job market that can cater to different interests and skill sets. These include healthcare, education, retail, and hospitality.

The top industries in the area are healthcare, retail, and education. This is based on the report by the Town of Okotoks Economic Development Office.

There are also job opportunities in the construction and trades industries. The same goes for professional and business services.

The top employers in Okotoks are the Foothills School Division, Okotoks Health and Wellness Centre, and Wal-Mart. There are also many smaller businesses that offer rewarding career opportunities.

If you’re considering starting your own business, Okotoks is an excellent location for you. Okotoks has a supportive and entrepreneurial community that can help make their dreams a reality.

The town also offers a range of resources and support for small businesses. This includes workshops, mentorship programs, and funding opportunities.

Living Well in Okotoks: Your Guide to Shopping, Dining, Health & Wellness, and Education

how to live in okotoks living well

Shopping in Okotoks

Okotoks offers a variety of shopping options, from big-box stores to small local businesses.

The Okotoks Marketplace is a popular shopping destination with over 30 stores. The marketplace includes grocery stores, clothing boutiques, and specialty shops.

For those who prefer to shop locally, the historic downtown district is home to several unique boutiques and galleries.

Dining in Okotoks

Okotoks has a thriving food scene with a multitude of dining options that cater to different tastes and preferences.

So, whether you’re in the mood for casual pub fare, authentic ethnic cuisine, or fine dining, you’ll find it in Okotoks.

Some popular dining spots include The George Traditional House, Big Sky BBQ Pit, and Lime Rickey’s.

Enjoying the Outdoors

Living in Okotoks means taking advantage of the great outdoors. Okotoks provides opportunities to stay active and enjoy the outdoors through various activities.

One of the popular outdoor activities in Okotoks is hiking. The nearby Sheep River Valley offers miles of scenic trails that cater to all levels of experience. The Okotoks Erratic is a massive boulder left behind by a glacier. This popular hiking destination has breathtaking views of the town and the mountains.

Another great way to enjoy the outdoors in Okotoks is by exploring its parks and green spaces. The town boasts over 90 hectares of parkland. This includes the picturesque Riverside Park and the natural playground of Drake Landing. The Okotoks Off-Leash Dog Park is a popular spot for dog owners, offering plenty of space for pups to run and play.

For those who prefer to get out on the water, the Bow River is an excellent spot for fishing, kayaking, and canoeing. Fly fishing enthusiasts frequently visit the river, the habitat of rainbow and brown trout.

Medical Facilities in Okotoks

Okotoks offers a well-rounded approach to health and wellness. The town has it all for you, whether you are looking for medical services or recreational activities to stay healthy.

It has a range of medical facilities, including the Okotoks Health and Wellness Centre. They provide a variety of services, such as family medicine, physiotherapy, and mental health services.

A Primary Care Network also offers free services to patients with a valid Alberta Health Care card. It’s The South Calgary Primary Care Network.

Fitness Facilities in Okotoks

For fitness enthusiasts, Okotoks offers many options. Including The Pason Centennial Arena, which hosts a variety of activities, including skating and hockey.

The Okotoks Recreation Centre has a fitness facility with cardio and weight machines. It also has an indoor pool and various fitness classes.

If you prefer a customized fitness experience, Okotoks has many private gyms and fitness studios to choose from.

We have Anytime Fitness and F45 Training, which offer personal training and group fitness classes.

Education in Okotoks

Education in Okotoks is highly valued and provides students with an excellent foundation for their future. The town is served by three school boards:

  • The Foothills School Division
  • Christ the Redeemer Catholic Schools
  • The Calgary Board of Education.

These boards operate multiple schools in the area. They provide students with various options for their education.

According to the 2021 Fraser Institute School Rankings, several Okotoks schools rank highly in Alberta. École Good Shepherd School ranked 12th out of 852 elementary schools. Foothills Composite High School, on the other hand, ranked 33rd out of 262 secondary schools.

Post-secondary education options are also available in Okotoks. At Bow Valley College, there are numerous programs available to choose from. It includes continuing education, upgrading, and diploma and certificate programs.

Additionally, the University of Calgary is only a short drive away. The institution provides undergraduate and graduate programs.

Settling into Life in Okotoks

In Okotoks, you will find that the magic of new beginnings is amplified by the stunning landscapes that envelop the town. This is a community where neighbours form friendships and create cherished memories. This will act as a reminder of the beauty and amazement that life has to offer.

We hope this article provided you with valuable insights into life in Okotoks. We encourage you to embrace the unique opportunity to become a part of the Okotoks community.

If you’re ready to embark on this journey and experience the warmth and magic of Okotoks, contact Griffin Real Estate. Our professional and dedicated team is eager to help you find your home in this wonderful town.

Begin your journey today by visiting our website and checking out our services.

Experience the pleasure of residing in Okotoks, and get ready to adore your new hometown!

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Okotoks Realtor | Griffin Real Estate | Brett Murrell

Brett Murrell

Founder/Realtor® Team Lead/CIR REALTY Okotoks Owner

I grew up on a farm in Saskatchewan, where I’ve brought dedication, hard work, trustworthiness, and loyalty with me into life and work. Farms and acreages have always been a big part of my life, and I bring those values and knowledge to my clients who seek my help. I care about what’s best for my clients, and I don’t stop until they’re happy.

Helping others goes beyond assisting them in viewings or paperwork, sometimes it’s lending an extra pair of hands unloading a U-Haul, helping with home repairs, or watching their pets.

My background in construction along with first-hand acreage living gives me an advantage over other REALTORS®. Whatever your acreage concerns are, I’m the expert on it.

There’s nothing more satisfying than helping people and teaching them along the way in their real estate journey. It’s satisfying to help them find a place they’re truly happy with.

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