Mac Fantastical HeroSource: Christine Romero-Chan / iMore

While time seems to have melted into one giant glob during 2020, believe it or not, we still have schedules to keep — gasp. That's why having a digital calendar on your Mac with macOS Big Sur can be a lifesaver, because you can keep track of all of your Zoom or Google Meet meetings, telemedicine appointments, virtual hangouts with friends and family, and other things. Maybe one day we can get back to having physical appointments and meetings, but either way, life gets hectic and keeping track of everything can be tedious. Here are some of the best calendar apps for Mac that we love.

Best calendar apps for Mac: Fantastical

Fantastical 3Source: iMore

Fantastical has been around for several years now, and even though it has switched to a subscription model, it remains the favorite calendar app for many of us here at iMore.

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With Fantastical, you are getting a fully functional desktop app that also has a menubar version for quick access. You can customize your views for daily, weekly, monthly, and even yearly, and your agenda of events appears in the side bar as well. If you are running multiple calendars at once, things can get gnarly — Fantastical lets you customize sets of calendars to view at once, and they can even be location-based, so things don't get too crazy when viewing. For example, you can have work calendars viewable while you're at work, but personal ones when you're at home.

The natural language input is also top-notch, as the app easily understands and fills out all of the appropriate fields while you type out something as simple as "Have lunch with Mom at In-N-Out on Tuesday at 2 p.m."

While Fantastical does have a subscription model now, previous users of Fantastical 2 get most of the features unlocked, so it's still very functional. If you're new to Fantastical, there is a trial to test it out to see if you like it before deciding on a subscription. The free version has restricted features.

Fantastical

Fantastical 3

Fantastical has a beautiful interface that's easy to use and plenty of robust features.

Best calendar apps for Mac: BusyCal

Busycal ScreenshotSource: Busy Apps FZE

Another great option is BusyCal. This app automatically syncs up with any accounts that you're using with the Mail app on Mac, and everything will be up-to-date. The design of the app itself is simple and clean, but there are plenty of powerful features as well. One of those is the Smart Filter, which lets you create rules for what events are shown. For example, you can set a filter to only show birthdays or repeating events. BusyCal also lets you have multiple Smart Filters set up at once, making it easier to organize your hectic calendar.

Other features of BusyCal include a menubar app, travel time, natural language input, and a ton of customization options including font face, size, colors, time format, and much more. If you don't like Fantastical's subscription model, BusyCal and its one-time cost is an excellent alternative to consider.

Busycal

BusyCal

BusyCal packs in a ton of useful features and is highly customizable. It also has a single, one-time cost.

Best calendar apps for Mac: Calendars

Calendars ScreenshotSource: Qbix

If you are satisfied with the default Calendar app on Mac, but just want a companion app to go with it in the menubar, then Calendars is worth a look. This free app lives in your menubar, acting as a viewer for the calendars that you've set up in Calendar. It serves as a quick way to see your schedule and agenda in a single glance, so you aren't able to add new events from this app. There is an optional subscription that gives you more features, like adding Google Calendar accounts and backgrounds.

Calendars

Calendars by Qbix, Inc.

Calendars lives in your menubar and serves as a companion to the default Calendar app.

Best calendar apps for Mac: Informant

Informant ScreenshotSource: Fanatic Software

Need your calendar app to be more than just a calendar? Then Informant is the one you're looking for. This powerful app rolls your calendar, task manager, and notes into one, giving you everything you need in a single glance. The task manager element of Informant is also very flexible, working with you, whether it's GTD, Franklin Covey, or a simple and basic task list. Informant also has support for multiple filters, so you can easily switch and access the important stuff whenever you need to.

Informant

Informant

Informant rolls your calendar, task manager, and notes app into one.

Best calendar apps for Mac: InstaCal - Menu Bar Calendar

Instacal ScreenshotSource: Higher Bar LLC

If you want your calendar to live in your menubar, but need a bit more functionality than Calendars, then InstaCal is worth considering. This app also lives in your menubar, so it's not a full blown app like the others. However, it keeps your calendar a click away, so you can view your events, agenda, and even tasks, as well as having the functionality of adding new events and tasks directly. InstaCal works with any of the calendars that you already have set up in Calendar, or you can manually add unlimited accounts from Google, Office 365, and Outlook. It also has Dark Mode support, customization options, and more.

Instacal Icon Higher Bar Llc

InstaCal - Menu Bar Calendar

InstaCal lives in your menubar but still gives you plenty of functionality, including the ability to add events and tasks.

Best calendar apps for Mac: Mini Calendar

Mini Calendar ScreenshotSource: AntLogic

Do you want a calendar app that is simple and lightweight? Mini Calendar fits the bill perfectly. It gives you access to your calendars three ways: on the desktop, from the Dock, and from the menubar. When it's on the desktop, it is always-on and sits above the wallpaper. From the Dock, you just need to click on the icon and it will bring up the calendar as a popup. Mini Calendar is configurable in terms of color, shortcut keys, and it can show you sunrise and sunset times too. It's just a light and fast way to get to your calendar when you need to.

Mini Calendar Icon Antlogic

Mini Calendar

Mini Calendar is a lightweight calendar app that you can access from your desktop, Dock, or menubar.

Best calendar apps for Mac: Calendar 366 II

Calendar 366 Ii RenderSource: Vincent Miethe

Rounding out the list is Calendar 366 II, which is another menubar calendar app. However, it's one of the more fully featured ones, which is quite impressive. With Calendar 366 II, you get full access to your calendar and reminders right from your menubar, and you can change the view to year, month, week, day, agenda, or even list. It has eight themes for light and dark modes, custom colors, calendar sets, custom font sizes, Spotlight integration, travel time, Alfred and LaunchBar support, and so much more. To pack all of the features of a full on application into just the menubar is pretty amazing, and the cost of the app is not too much either, all things considered.

Calendar 366 Ii Icon Vincent Miethe

Calendar 366 II

Calendar 366 II is one of the most feature-packed menubar calendar apps there is.

Stay on schedule with the best calendar apps for Mac

These are just a few of the best calendar apps on the Mac that are our favorites so far. Most of us have been fans of Fantastical for the past few years, and it's been our daily driver for calendars on Mac. Another popular option is BusyCal, which doesn't require a subscription like Fantastical. What do you use for keeping track of your schedule on the Mac? Let us know your favorites in the comments!

Updated December 2020: These are still the best calendar apps for Mac.

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