14+ Unmissable Issues To Do In Banff Nationwide Park

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After 24 years of journey although over 50 nations, I lastly made it to Canada. May I’ve had a greater welcome than by visiting the spectacular Banff Nationwide Park, Canada’s first nationwide park.

caz standing on mountain ridge with Banff views
On prime of Canada!

Nestled within the coronary heart of the breathtaking Canadian Rockies, Banff Nationwide Park is a paradise for journey seekers and nature fanatics alike craving exhilarating hikes, serene lake cruises, or wildlife encounters.

With its awe-inspiring landscapes, pristine wilderness, and a plethora of outside actions, there are many issues to do in Banff Nationwide Park that beckons you to embark on a journey like no different. 

When the chance arose to hitch certainly one of my finest buddies – Christina McEvoy – for her annual content material creator journeys, I couldn’t say no.

caz and Christina McEvoy at Moraine Lake
With Christina at Moraine Lake

Largely as a result of I obtained to fulfill her in actual life for the primary time and hang around along with her on enjoyable adventures by way of Banff Nationwide Park, but additionally as a result of she requested me to assist facilitate her enterprise workshops at her Instasuccess Retreat.

Our group of 17 girls spent 5 days within the Banff area climbing by way of the nationwide park, hanging off mountain faces, and studying and rising collectively.

On this information, I’ve shared what we obtained as much as, so you may get able to discover a world of surprise and make reminiscences that may final a lifetime on this iconic pure playground.

So with out additional ado, listed here are among the most iconic issues to do in Banff Nationwide Park in Alberta Canada.

Useful Reserving Guidelines:

  • Automotive Rental: Getting round Banff Nationwide Park can be simpler with your individual automobile. We suggest Uncover Vehicles for automobile rental as they’ve a simple to make use of interface, nice charges, and glorious customer support. See rates and availability.
  • Shuttles: It’s important to get a shuttle to Lake Moraine, and its beneficial for Lake Louise. You could e-book prematurely both by way of Canada Parks or different numerous operators. Costs range. Learn more here.
  • For visiting nationwide parks in Canada, you must purchase a park pass, both day by day or yearly.
  • Guided Excursions: Some guided excursions provides you with the switch/ shuttle entry to the busy areas, serving to you keep away from the shuttles above. The costs aren’t that completely different to among the affiliated park shuttle suppliers so could also be a greater deal. See options here. This hop on hop off shuttle bus can also be an choice for getting round to Banff’s prime points of interest.
  • The place to remain: Banff and Canmore are the 2 finest locations to remain to entry Banff Nationwide Park. Downtown Banff is within the nationwide park and would be the dearer of the 2 locations to remain.
    • We stayed on the White Spruce Lodge in Canmore. The condos have been spacious, trendy, self-sufficient with a scorching tub and nice views of the mountains. See rates and availability
    • Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise is probably the most well-known place to remain in Banff Nationwide Park proper on Lake Louise. After all, it comes with a excessive value, however for location and status you possibly can’t beat it. See rates and availability.

Issues to Do in Banff Nationwide Park

If you happen to’re unsure what to do in Banff NP, then under are a few of my favourite points of interest and websites on my go to that you simply shouldn’t miss!

1. Climb the By way of Ferrata at Mt Norquay

caz hanging off side of mountain on via feratta banff
Coronary heart pumping stuff!

Really feel like hanging off the aspect of the mountain with solely a carabiner preserving your securely in place? Then the Via Ferrata course on the aspect of Mt Norquay in Banff Nationwide Park is for you.

This was my first-time doing a By way of Ferrata. I used to be meant to do it on my wild adventurous journey to Otztal, Austria however my flight time dwelling clashed with it and compelled me to skip it – which I used to be glad about, because it appeared terrifying.

There was no skipping this through ferrata in Banff. I felt braver being in a bunch of girls, and since I’d be speaking about overcoming concern in our workshops, I might hardly be rum on the first sight of an overhanging rock.

By way of Ferrata is Italian for the iron path. climbing pure rock formations or cliffs utilizing a system of mounted iron ladders, steps, cables, and bridges. It’s an exhilarating method to expertise the fun of mountain climbing and mountaineering with out the necessity for superior technical expertise or tools.

caz hanging off the side of the mountain in banff

This journey exercise is extraordinarily well-liked in Europe however has solely lately began catching on in North America.

Two guides from Banff Norquay took us on a four-hour journey from the chalet on the prime of the gondola excessive up on the Norquay cliffs, climbing the Memorial, Dawn and Vista buttresses, and climbing alongside the ridgeline.

They inspired us and helped us climb up the iron rungs of the mountain face and navigate spherical rocks jutting out.

As our group was giant, there have been occasions when needed to grasp off the mountain ready for the road to slowly transfer up.

line of people on via feratta banff

We couldn’t crowd each other in a fearful try to hurry as much as the resting ledge.

For many of the climb, I stared immediately into the mountain face, refusing to look down or out and be hit with that sense of hanging off a rock with solely a carabiner preserving us protected.

They’re dependable sufficient, however you’re accountable for making certain you all the time have one clipped on every time as you navigate across the cables.

After we arrived on the ridgeline, it was time to lookup and out and savor the reward – spectacular panoramic views.

caz climbing up mountain with harness on
Picture: Gina from Driftswood Photography
Caz kissing a rock
Thank God for secure floor!
bow river running through bow valley and banff moutnains

The turquoise brilliance of the Bow River slowly meandered its means by way of Banff city, and the valley lined with jagged mountain peaks.

We have been all glad when the onerous scaling a part of the By way of Ferrata was over, and we might hike alongside the ridgeline and down by way of a really steep gully again to the chalet for a scrumptious lunch within the Cliff Home restaurant with beautiful views out over the mountains.

group of women on mountain ridge posing for photo
Our crew! | Picture: Gina from Driftswood Photography
people dining in restaurant with mountain views
Cliff Home Restaurant views

Get pleasure from these spectacular views of Mount Rundle, the Banff townsite and the Bow Valley as you journey again down the mountain by the use of the gondola.

2. Admire Views from Mt Norquay Viewpoint

christina and caz looking at banff viewpoint
Admiring the views with Christina | Picture Krista from Our Wild Wanderers

If you happen to didn’t get sufficient views of the Bow River Valley and Downtown Banff whereas hanging off Mt Norquay, there’s a viewpoint on the drive again down from the Mt Norquay space.

After a number of switchbacks, you’ll attain a stone retaining wall and a big grassy space, identified casually because the Inexperienced Spot.

view of bow river running through valley
bighorn sheep on side of the road
Picture: Krista from Our Wild Wanderers

That is the place you’ll pull over to park and stroll out onto the grass to succeed in the lookout level. If you happen to’re fortunate, you is perhaps sharing the grass with a herd of bighorn sheep that frequent the world. We noticed them on the street simply earlier than we reached this Banff viewpoint.

From the parking space, you possibly can stroll out onto the inexperienced meadow for some beautiful views of the Banff townsite, the Bow River, Vermillion Lakes, and the Bow Valley.

vermillion lakes in valley
Practice working by way of valley previous Vermillion Lakes

We timed it proper as a particularly lengthy freight practice moved by way of the valley with its vivid crimson cargo containers. It was so putting towards the yellows, greens, and blues of the pure Fall landscapes of the valley.

I’ve additionally heard close to right here is the Jupiter Resort which is a good place to cease for a drink with a view on their patio, a meal, and even as a place to stay in Banff.

3. Catch the Dawn at Lake Moraine

caz sitting on rock wall smiling in front of moraine lake canada
Moraine Lake

Moraine Lake is a breathtakingly lovely glacial lake situated within the Valley of the Ten Peaks, inside Banff Nationwide Park It’s typically considered some of the picturesque and iconic pure locations within the Canadian Rockies.

Moraine Lake is well known for its vibrant turquoise water, a results of the wonderful rock particles often called “rock flour” carried into the lake by melting glaciers.

The putting colour of the lake, mixed with the dramatic backdrop of the Valley of the Ten Peaks, creates a mesmerizing and picture-perfect panorama.

torquoise blue water of moraine lake surrounded by snow capped peaks

Lake Moraine was my favourite of the lakes we visited in Banff Nationwide Park. It had a extra dramatic really feel than the opposite lakes with the triple mountain peaks rising sheerly up from the lake’s edge.

We arrived for dawn, and whereas the clouds lined that morning glory, we have been nonetheless capable of witness the sluggish unveiling of this lovely good blue glacier fed lake.

We stayed awhile time taking pictures till lastly the clouds lifted and we noticed the snow-covered peaks and their reflection within the water.

lake moraine framed by trees with snow covered mountains
View between the timber
People sitting on rock looking at view
The extra open viewpoint

For the very best view of Lake Moraine, take the brief steep path as much as the rock pile for the viewing platform. The primary part provides you with a view framed by timber. You may go as much as the subsequent stage for the extra wide-open vista. Each are price seeing.

It’s smaller than Lake Louise, the most well-liked lake in Banff Nationwide Park.

kayakers on lake moraine
The view from lake Moraine shore
group of women posing in front of Lake Moraine
Nichole, Chelsea, Christina, Caroline & Me!

You may rent canoes to paddle on the lake. You;’ll additionally get a improbable view from right here!

Notice: You may solely get to Lake Moraine by the use of the shuttle from the small city of Lake Louise. You’ll want to e-book prematurely. Learn more here. The shuttle occasions weren’t nice at lining up with the dawn occasions, so we have been there at the least an hour earlier than dawn, which is a bummer for early hen get up calls (like 3:30am for us coming from Canmore)  Or take a look at these tour shuttle options for Lake Moraine.

There are additionally a number of hikes within the Lake Moraine space, certainly one of which we did ….

4. Hike the Larch Valley Hike, Lake Moraine

two women hiking on a snow covered trail with larch tree fall foliage
Picture: Gina from Driftswood Photography

Probably the most well-liked hikes in Banff Nationwide Park throughout the Fall is the Larch Valley hike, identified for the good yellow colours of the Larch timber.

We have been fortunate as we had these lovely timber calmly dusted in snow on our stroll up, however melted away on our means down so we obtained the complete good colour – though many nonetheless had tinges of inexperienced of their leaves.

The Larch Valley hike rises from the shores of Moraine Lake to an intensive forest of larch timber. From this forest of larch timber, Banff hikers will get pleasure from panoramic views of the mountains which make up the Valley of the Ten Peaks.

The hike begins with a sequence of fairly steep switchbacks earlier than leveling out to the Larch Valley.

The Larch Valley hike is about 9km/ 5 miles return journey, and I’d name a reasonable hike (I’m an skilled hiker).

Enable 4 hours for the return journey, and ensure to take the shorter fall daylight into consideration! If climbing within the fall count on it to be busier, though I didn’t discover it dangerous in any respect. It was getting busier as we hiked again although.

We did go away for the hike at round 8:30am.We took our time going up and right down to get a number of pictures – a bunch of content material creators collectively means many pictures shoots.

person on larch valley trail surrounded by fall foliage
reflections in lake with snow covered mountains
You may see the Sentinel Cross switchback on the mountain

The hike ends on the Minnestimma lakes which had fairly putting reflections.

You may proceed to Sentinel Cross between Pinnacle Mountain and Mount Temple which is supposed to have among the finest views in Banff over the lakes, the Larch Valley, and the Valley of the Ten Peaks.

After the through ferrata the day earlier than, our crew handed on taking the very steep change backs we noticed zig zagging up the mountain like a lightning bolt.

group of women posing on trail
Picture: Gina from Driftswood Photography

Plus, we have been working brief on time and needed to get again for the shuttle to return to our condominium for some workshops.

We have been meant to see the sundown at Vermillion Lakes later that day, however it poured with rain, so we handed choosing an evening in with pizza and conversations.

5. Go to Iconic Lake Louise 

caz sitting on a rock in front of lake louise

Lake Louise is known for its beautiful, turquoise-colored waters, surrounded by rugged mountain peaks and luxurious forests.

The colourful turquoise colour of the water comes from the wonderful glacial silt suspended in it, and it’s set towards the backdrop of snow-capped mountains, together with Mount Victoria and the enduring Victoria Glacier.

It’s stated to be some of the lovely lakes on the earth, however I say Lake Moraine is extra lovely.

In the summertime, guests can go climbing, canoeing, or just get pleasure from a leisurely stroll alongside the lakeside path.

boathouse on lake louise

Within the winter, the lake freezes over, turning into a magical ice-skating rink, and the encircling space turns into a winter wonderland for cross-country snowboarding and snowshoeing.

Lake Louise is among the most visited locations in Canada so plan your go to nicely. The car parking zone fills up rapidly right here, particularly throughout the summer season season.

If you happen to miss a parking spot, you must return to Lake Louise city and get a shuttle bus from the park and trip middle (simply off the Trans Canada Freeway, 6km from the Lake Louise city).

group of women posing for photo on lake louise

To keep away from this subject, you might simply wish to pre-book the shuttle! And look at these private tours as an alternative option to keep away from the general public crowds.

Most guests to the world-famous Lake Louise space don’t enterprise a lot farther than the world between the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise and the shoreline of Lake Louise. To transcend this, you might wish to stroll the flat and brief Lake Louise Lakeshore Path.

In any other case, to get a greater take a look at the vibrancy of the Lake Louise water, I like to recommend the next actions. (From floor stage, relying on lighting situations, it might not pop as a lot!)

6. Get pleasure from a Canoe Journey on Lake Louise

caroline canoeing on lake louise
Picture: Gina from Driftswood Photography

You may after all simply keep on the water’s edge and benefit from the views, hike any of the paths on this part of Banff Nationwide Park or lease a canoe to rise up near the gorgeous clear water.

It was solely after I put my paddle within the water and noticed an orange leaf float by that I actually noticed how clear and clear the water is.

We rented canoes after our Tea home hike and had a enjoyable hour paddling round. Canoe rental is pricey, so paddle with some buddies! If you happen to keep on the Fairmont located on Lake Louise, you get a reduced canoe rental charge.

canoes on lake louise in front of fairmont chateau
The Fairmont on Lake Louise

Keep: Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise

Searching for a luxurious stick with unbelievable views?

Then you definately’ll wish to e-book a room on the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise located proper on the sting of Lake Louise. It’s a surprising and iconic property identified for its lovely structure and serves as a preferred vacation spot for guests and a venue for weddings and particular occasions. Find the best rates for your stay here.

7. Hike the Lake Agnes Hike to the Tea Home

caz posing in front of lake agnes

Probably the most well-liked hikes in Banff Nationwide Park is the 6.8km / 4-mile return Lake Agnes Tea Home hike, named for the English fashion tea room sitting on a small lake Agnes about 385 meters above Lake Louise.

As you ascend the gradual uphill path, you’ll be handled to breathtaking vistas of Lake Louise peeking by way of the forest cover under. 

The beautiful turquoise waters of Lake Louise grow to be much more mesmerizing the upper you climb. You may all the time get pleasure from them on the way in which again down if you happen to’d relatively consider getting uphill with deep breaths (it’s actually not that dangerous!)

view of lake louise from above
Good views of Lake Louise on the way in which up

You may take a relaxation at Mirror Lake, a tranquil gem nestled amidst scenic environment. Towering above Mirror Lake is the spectacular rock formation often called the Large Beehive, and the hike to its summit ranks among the many most interesting in Lake Louise.

Persevering with from Mirror Lake to Lake Agnes, the path progressively turns into steeper. Alongside this path, you’ll have a singular alternative to witness the great thing about a cascading Banff waterfall up shut.

We skipped this with the intention to see it after the Tea Home, however we didn’t come again that means and I forgot! So, spend time it.

wooden tea house with mountain views

It’s just some extra steps up the staircase to the charming Lake Agnes Tea Home, a well-deserved reward to your mountain journey.

The tea home will get terribly busy, so the sooner you go the much less ready in line. Tables appeared to show over rapidly, and we surprisingly obtained sufficient tables inside all 17 of us. Many individuals will wait longer to get one of many few tables on the deck, so that they have higher views.

The menu is straightforward, that includes principally soup of the day, sandwiches and a few type of dessert. Helicopters fly provides in the beginning of the season, and workers hike in contemporary produce.

group of women sitting at table
Lunch with India, Arika and Chelsea

Ponder that as you’re consuming and be further variety to your server – additionally they hike to work, however usually keep in small cabins on the mountain.

Whereas we have been ready in line, we have been capable of watch a helicopter fly forwards and backwards transporting water provides by bucket.

I actually loved this break on the Tea Home. We stopped by the shores of Lake Agnes for extra beautiful picture alternatives!

8. Do the Little Beehive Hike 

caz hiking on little beehive trail
Picture: Gina from Driftswood Photography

After your lunch, you possibly can proceed climbing one other mile return on the Little Beehive path.

You should have lovely views alongside the way in which trying down over the milky turquoise waters of Lake Louise, Chateau Lake Louise, Mirror Lake, Mt. Fairview, and even so far as the Lake Louise ski resort on the far aspect of the valley. 

You’ll come to a big rocky clearing with expansive views of the Rocky Mountains throughout the Bow Valley and over Lake Louis and in the direction of the city of Banff.

caz looking over at lake louise
Gorgeous water colour | Picture: Gina from Driftswood Photography
yellow larch trees in front of snow covered mountain peaks

I most popular this part of the hike to the start a part of the tea path.

Whereas not the very best hike in Banff for the larch timber, you will note a number of golden coloured larch timber (within the Fall). I loved the stroll again right down to Lake Louse and the chance to get pleasure from these views!

We noticed horses developing carrying vacationers on the way in which again down, which can be one other enjoyable factor to do in Banff Nationwide Park.

In the other way from the Tea Home is the Large Beehive hike that’s stated to have among the finest 360-degree views in Banff Nationwide Park.

The 15km Plain of Six Glaciers is one other path close to Lake Louise that may take you to a Tea Home!

9. Go to Emerald Lake

reflections of snowy peak in emerald lake

Trying to escape the crowds of Lake Louise and Lake Moraine?

Emerald Lake is a pristine place of serenity. It’s a spot I wish to come again to and keep in certainly one of their wood cabins on the water. As quickly as you arrive, you simply really feel peace right here.

Emerald Lake is in close by Yoho Nationwide Park, however solely half-hour’ drive away we added it into our Banff Nationwide Park itinerary. It’s additionally within the province of British Columbia so on my first go to to Canada I traveled to 2 provinces and two nationwide parks.

The identify “Emerald Lake” is derived from the lake’s vibrant inexperienced hue, which is brought on by gentle scattering off the wonderful glacial silt suspended within the water.

boat house on emerald lake

The putting colour, mixed with the dramatic mountain surroundings, reflections of surrounding peaks of President Vary, and dense forest creates a mesmerizing and picturesque panorama.

We had meant to lease canoes at Emerald Lake, however they have been closing sooner than we anticipated on account of close by development. So, we canoed at Lake Louise as an alternative.

group of girls posing for camera
Love this shot on the restaurant porch

Don’t go away Emerald Lake with out consuming at a restaurant within the Lodge. Mount Burgess Eating Room is thought for its seasonal menu; It was the very best meal we had on our Banff journey. I used to be instructed I couldn’t go to Alberta with out consuming their Alberta Beef.

It was cooked to perfection right here with a diecious herb aioli and crimson wine discount.

girls looking out at emerald lake views
Taking within the views with India and Jen

There are a number of climbing trails that begin from the Emerald Lake space, catering to numerous ability ranges. The preferred path is the simple and family-friendly 5.2-kilometer (3.2-mile) loop path that circles the lake, offering picturesque views from all angles.

Tougher hikes, such because the Emerald Basin Path, supply deeper exploration into the encircling wilderness.

Keep at Emerald Lake Lodge

cabin in the woods beside the lake

There’s no higher location for a spot to remain than proper on Emerald Lake. I liked the look of the cabins right here and their big dosing of serenity. The rooms of the cabin are fundamental however cozy with a wood-burning fire. There’s additionally an outdoor scorching tub and three eating places on web site. Click for best rates for Emerald Lake Lodge.

10. See the Northern Lights

caz holding up arms looking at northern lights

Think about our shock after we walked out of the Canmore restaurant on our first night time and noticed a faint dancing gentle within the sky?

“It’s the Northern Lights,” somebody screamed! It was a promising signal that good luck was right here to remain on our Banff Nationwide Park journey.

It’s not simple to see the Northern Lights presently of the 12 months, so early within the night, AND when there may be gentle air pollution round from the close by properties and villages.

It’s my first time seeing the northern lights and it was thoughts blowing to see lights dancing round within the sky. We picked up the colours extra in our pictures than with our eyes.

The Aurora Borealis makes an look a number of occasions all year long in Banff. The perfect probability to see the Northern Lights is throughout the winter months from October to Might, and for summer season it’s round 2am

The lights are unpredictable within the Canadian Rockies so don’t plan a visit round it however take the shock as a present if it comes. Monitor what’s taking place with the Aurora Borealis through the Aurora Watch. The forecast is often correct only some days or hours prematurely.

I’d not advise out-of-province guests to plan a visit round recognizing the northern lights in Banff. The lights are too unpredictable within the Canadian Rockies, and the forecast is correct only some days, if not a number of hours prematurely.

11. Discover Downtown Banff

caz sitting on planter box in downtown banff

Downtown Banff is particular because it’s situated inside the Banff Nationwide Park and so surrounded by the Canadian Rockies. The view of the Cascade Mountain looming over the city of Banff is one you received’t neglect.

The city itself is an inviting hub, providing a wide range of quaint boutiques, native artwork galleries, memento stalls, journey outfitters, eating places serving scrumptious delicacies, and comfy cafes the place you possibly can savor a heat beverage whereas taking within the alpine surroundings.

building at end of street surrounded by fall trees

Whereas very touristy, it’s price a go to in your journey by way of the nationwide park. We noticed a number of elk alongside the aspect of the street driving into Banff. We additionally noticed a number of silly vacationers fallowing them into the forest for a photograph. Don’t be a silly vacationer.

12. Stroll the Bow River Path, Banff

turquoise bow river running under bridge and framed by yellow trees
Stunning Bow River path

I skipped exploring the downtown space in our free time within the city, as an alternative strolling right down to the Bow River.

I had seen all of it day from excessive above, I wished to get down low to that good turquoise water and it didn’t disappoint. It was particularly lovely with the yellow pop of colour from the timber.

yellow trees next to turquoise bow river
Gorgeous colours

I turned proper as I crossed the primary bridge. If I turned left on the Bow River path, I’d have come throughout the Shock Nook and Bow Falls viewpoint and the Fairmont Banff Springs, one other well-liked place to remain in Banff.

13. Eat at Farm and Hearth Restaurant

caroline and laurence hugging
My lovely new good friend Laurence from Journey and Jaunts

We had a improbable farm to desk expertise at this Banff Restaurant. Farm and Fire’s menu options solely the freshest elements from native Canadian farmers, that’s slow-roasted and wood-fired.

If eating with a bunch, make it a shared eating expertise along with your meats and aspect dishes. We obtained some rotisserie chickens to share and scrumptious sides of mashed potato, succotash, roasted carrots, and corn bread.

Keep in Banff: The Fairmont Banff Springs

This resort, in-built 1888, is styled after a Scottish Baronial fortress and is a Nationwide Historic Website. It gives 11 eating places and 14 outlets, a 32-yard lap pool and a 20-yard heated out of doors pool.

The Fairmont Spa has 27 therapy areas and gives a wide range of stress-free massages and sweetness therapies. Different on-site actions for visitors embrace bowling, tennis, horseback using, and {golfing}. Find best rates for the Fairmont Banff Springs.

14. Discover Canmore

group of women sitting under Canmore sign

Whereas Downtown Banff felt extra touristy, Canmore had extra of a neighborhood, down-to-earth vibe I resonated extra with. I want I had extra time to discover its cute shops and native eating places. Canmore is about 25 minutes from Banff.

Right here are some things I can suggest:

  • Simply while you suppose you’ve seen all of it, you stroll into Stonewaters in Downtown Canmore and uncover a enjoyable and welcoming retailer with cool native dwelling merchandise from pottery to deal with vegetation, and distinctive clothes design and items. I liked this retailer, particularly because it helps native artist and designers and has a particular Canadian Rocky Mountains journey vibe.
  • This All in the Wild gallery in Canmore by wildlife photographer Jason Leo Bantle is a should! He’s a Canadian pictures who captures iconic wildlife pictures. It’s fascinating to be taught the tales behind his pictures, together with a Polar Bear household on the ice and a raccoon with its head although a window in an deserted automobile.
  • Communitea Cafe is a improbable place to eat wholesome sandwiches, wraps and bowls reminiscent of Pad Tahia and Mediterranean Bowls. Their coffees are additionally good. Market Bistro:
  • Market Bistro (a little bit outdoors of city within the 3 Sisters space) has scrumptious trendy Italian and French delicacies. WE had a stunning dinner right here on our first night time. The pan seared flat iron steak with fingerling potatoes and mushroom and peppercorn braisage was excellent.
  • If you happen to love pizza, you received’t’ wish to miss this Rocky Mountain Flatbread. They use native and natural produce for his or her gourmand pizzas. I extremely suggest the fig jam, brie, and smoked bison. They’ve gluten free pizzas!

STAY IN CANMORE: White Spruce Lodge

three girls posing on deck with hot tub robes on
Prepared for the recent tub at our lodging

I liked our condominium keep on the White Spruce Lodge in Canmore. The condos have been spacious, trendy, self-sufficient with a scorching tub and balcony with nice views of the mountains. It’s situated near Canmore city and simple driving distance to Banff. See rates and availability

Different Issues to Do in Banff Nationwide Park and Close by

caz smiling at camera surrounded by fall foliage forest

Don’t let the Canadian Rockies adventures cease there! Banff is situated subsequent to Yoho Nationwide Park, Kootenay Nationwide Park and Jasper Nationwide Park and the Icefields Parkway:

  • Johnston Canyon: An awesome family-friendly hike in Banff Nationwide Park is the Johnston Canyon hike (there may be an higher falls and decrease falls path). It options a number of cascading waterfalls whereas strolling by way of a deep canyon. Learn extra in our submit on finest hikes within the Canadian Rockies.
  • Additionally in that submit is the basic Banff hike, Sulphur Mountain. By way of a sequence of switchbacks with continuous incline and an occasional view of Rundle Mountain, you attain the highest of Sulphur Mountain in about two hours. The 5.5 km lengthy path ends on the higher gondola terminal at 2,300 meters. If you happen to don’t wish to hike, you can too take the Banff Gondola.
  • Kootenay Nationwide Park is the least visited within the Rockies as a result of most of it’s inaccessible. Nonetheless, Floe Lake is a little-known hike with a well-trodden path.
  • Drive the Icefields Parkway that hyperlinks Banff and Jasper Nationwide Park. The 232 km Icefields Parkway is identified to be probably the most scenic drive in Canada. It’s identified for its breathtaking magnificence, with beautiful mountain vistas, glaciers, waterfalls, and turquoise lakes. Right here is our Icefields Parkway Itinerary information with unmissable stops together with Columbia Icefield, Athabasca Glacier and Bow Lake.
  • Jasper Nationwide Park is a world of numerous expansive glaciers, snow-capped mountain peaks, highly effective waterfalls, turquoise alpine lakes, and considerable wildlife. Listed here are 8 of probably the most lovely locations to see in Jasper Nationwide Park.
  • Go to the recent springs! There are a lot of pure scorching springs within the nationwide park which have been utilized by staff on the railroads within the Eighteen Eighties. At the moment you possibly can benefit from the heat, mineral-rich waters at Banff Higher Sizzling Springs on Sulphur Mountain, or drive about an hour south of Banff NP to Radium Sizzling Springs, a village identified for its scorching spring swimming pools.
  • Drive the Bow Valley Parkway. This can be a pretty scenic drive by way of Banff NP that connects Banff city to Lake Louise. It’s 48km of paved street that’s used as an alterntive to the Trans-Canada Freeway. It’s well-liked amongst biking fanatics.
  • Go snowboarding in Sunshine Village. What makes this the very best place to ski is that the ski season runs from final November till early Might, making it the longest open ski resort in Canada.
  • Study concerning the indigenous folks at Cave and Basin Nationwide Historic Website, which is a ravishing cave with a lake inside.
  • Go to among the lesser identified lakes reminiscent of Peyto Lake and Two Jack Lake.
  • Get pleasure from a ship cruise on Lake Minnewanka.
  • Watch the solar rise from Tunnel Mountain.

Try these well-liked excursions of Banff Nationwide Park

For these how like a number of day excursions, with a splash of luxurious, take into account the Canadian Rockies excursions supplied by our most popular tour firm, Globus. See their Western Canada tours here.


We’ve secured an unique yTravel discount: Save $100 per particular person on choose 2023 and 2024 Globus and Avalon Waterway Holidays. Use the code: YTRAVEL when reserving on-line on the Globus and Avalon Waterways web sites, by calling Globus and Avalon Waterways immediately, or reserving with a most popular Journey Advisor. Phrases & Situations.

Banff Nationwide Park: Getting There & Away

Fly into Calgary after which hop on a shuttle, a bus (free WiFi on Brewster buses) or rent a car.

The drive from the airport to Banff takes about 1¾ hours and is beautiful! Maintain a watch out for the wildlife bridges. They mix in with the mountain surroundings, (though simply noticeable) and supply a protected crossing cross the freeway for wildlife.

Banff actually isn’t near every other main metropolis. It might be near a 5 hour drive from Edmonton or a 9-hour drive from Vancouver.

I spent a day in Calgary earlier than visiting Banff. Listed here are among the finest issues to do in Calgary, if you may be stopping off there as nicely.

Suggestions for Mountain climbing within the Canadian Rockies

caz hiking on trail
Picture: Gina from Driftswood Photography
  • Don’t neglect to purchase your Banff National park pass, both day by day or yearly.
  • Earlier than heading out, make certain to take a look at path situations. Some trails may shut on account of avalanche hazard or bear presence. For trails in nationwide parks, see Parks Canada.
  • When climbing within the Canadian Rockies, you’re in bear habitat. Parks Canada and Alberta Parks strongly suggest carrying a bear spray inside arm’s attain, learn how to use it, and make noise whereas climbing, so that you don’t shock any bears
  • Pack loads of water and snacks to your hikes. And no matter you soak up, deliver again out with you.
  • Get hold of detailed path maps and knowledge from customer facilities or on-line sources. Know the path size, problem, and elevation acquire to decide on a hike that fits your health stage.
  • Put on applicable clothes and footwear for the season and terrain (costume in layers as situations can change rapidly). Take into account packing necessities like a first-aid equipment, multi-tool, headlamp, and additional meals and water.
  • Begin your hike early within the day to keep away from crowds and afternoon thunderstorms. It’s additionally simpler to seek out parking at trailheads early within the morning.
  • If you happen to encounter wildlife, preserve a protected distance, and by no means feed or method them. Maintain canines on a leash to guard each wildlife and your pet.

Remaining Ideas

caz posing in front of lake louise
Lake Louise

Wow! What an introduction to Canada. Banff Nationwide Park must be some of the lovely locations on the earth.

Whereas I noticed and did loads on my 5 day journey to this area, there are nonetheless many extra hikes, prime points of interest and issues to do for me to return for. Not simply in Banff, however different close by locations within the Canadian Rockies.

Banff Nationwide Park is a real pure wonderland that guarantees an unforgettable journey for each sort of traveler.

From the turquoise waters of Lake Louise to the breathtaking vistas at Moraine Lake, the exhilarating hikes, and the serene moments within the coronary heart of the Canadian Rockies, this nationwide park has one thing to supply everybody.

I hope this information on prime points of interest in Banff NP and issues to do will aid you plan an epic journey stuffed with unforgettable reminiscences. Go away any of your individual strategies, feedback or questions within the remark field under!

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