Banff National Park (And Eight More Places to Visit in Banff, Canada)

Banff National Park (And Eight More Places to Visit in Banff, Canada)

Few locations perfectly depict the Canadian frontier like the Banff National Park. It offers a mesmerizing view of the Canadian Rockies and its iconic lakes. There’s no shortage of unique places to see and experience.

If you want to plan a trip to Canada, Alberta is a beautiful destination. Banff, Alberta, has one of the purest stretches of mountain landscape ever. It has snow-capped peaks, lakes, caves, and is rich in wildlife.

Tourists visit Banff all year round for sightseeing or in the winter for thrilling ski adventures. Whichever your reason for visiting, you won’t regret it. Here are some of the places you don’t want to miss during your stay.

1.    Banff National Park

For most, Banff National Park is the main attraction in Banff, Alberta. It is a vast national park system that spans numerous lakes, caves, springs, and other unique sights. Pretty much everything must-see in the region is in or around this national park.

One of the best things to do, besides sightseeing and skiing in the winter, is bathing in the hot springs. Regardless of the Banff National Park weather, these springs stay open until late at night. Tourists flock to enjoy hot water that’s hundreds of years old. And the view of the Rundle Mountain is also awe-inspiring.

2.   Lake Louise

Lake Louise is one of the best places to visit in Banff. In fact, many call it the jewel of the national park. It’s surrounded by snow-capped mountains that form a breathtaking view. Although the water is cold, it’s excellent for canoeing.

There are many hiking routes around the lake that offer plenty of opportunities to see local wildlife. While there, you can also check out the Chateau Lake Louise. It’s built in 1924 and is one of the best places in the area to grab a meal.

Not far from the hotel is a place where you can book a horseback tour. And you can also go to the Lake Louise Ski Resort during the winter. It’s the most popular one in Alberta and even throughout Canada. What’s also great is to take a trip up in the Banff gondola.

3.    Town of Banff

You can’t go to Banff and not check out the town itself.

There are many hotels in Banff where you can stay, including the one that’s now Banff’s emblem – the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel. It’s a local historic building with a castle-like design. And the view from there is amazing, thanks to the rich wooden area it sits on.

Most accommodations, restaurants, and shops are also in town. Even though other scattered resorts in the area offer amazing sights, it’s the town that offers a unique view of the Canadian Rockies.

4.   Sulphur Mountain

A stone’s throw away from the hotels in Banff stands Sulphur Mountain. Towering over the town, it offers a fantastic view of Banff at the top. And you can take the gondola up and get a bird’s eye view of the whole valley if you visit during the summer.

There’s a restaurant at the top of the mountain with great food and even better views of the decks. You can also hike further up the mountain to the Cosmic Ray meteorological station, which also happens to be a national historic site.

5.    Moraine Lake

If you want to see one of the purest views in the region, this is it. Moraine Lake sits in the Valley of Ten Peaks. It’s an impressive site surrounded by peaks that are over 9,800 ft. tall. You can also see the Wenkchemna Glacier from this location.

It’s also not too far from Lake Louise. You can find many sightseeing trails in the area, including a flat walking trail along the northwest side of the lake. And you even may recognize the scenery from the trails seen in the postcards of the region.

The Moraine Lake Lodge offers a place of rest along the lakeshore. It is also where you can find canoes to rent and take out on the lake.

6.   Peyto Lake

Bow Pass and Peyto Lake are some of the best places to visit in Banff, especially in the summer. The highest pass in the park runs along the Saskatchewan River. This can take you right up to the Peyto Lake viewpoint – a trendy tourist lookout spot that’s easy to access from the nearby parking area.

The turquoise color of the lake looks breathtaking. And from mid to late summer, the entire mountain blooms with wildflowers. It’s one of the most colorful areas in Banff National Park – definitely worth a trip.

7.    Icefields Parkway

When visiting Banff, highway 93 offers one of the best views. Locals call it the Icefields Parkway and this stretch of road crosses two national parks. If you want to drive at your own pace and take in the scenery, this is the best place to do it.

It’s one of the purest sightseeing routes on soaring mountainous terrains. You can find plenty of overlooks, specific spots for travelers, and parking spaces on the highway. They are all excellent stops for taking pictures and admiring the view.

You can also spot goats and bighorn sheep along the way. Want to see the turquoise waters of the glacier-fed lakes? You can do it here, too.

8.   Johnston Canyon

There’s more to see in Banff than mountains, and the Johnston Canyon is a great example. This is a long canyon with two waterfalls and very steep cliff walls. But it’s actually easy to access and walk on, thanks to the bridge walkways.

On the far side of the canyon, you can relax at the Ink Pots. It’s named as such because it’s a group of springs with a blue-green color. Although it’s not as impressive or easy to reach in the winter, this path sees a lot of traffic in the summer.

The Canadian Rockies at Their Finest

The Canadian Rockies may not be as impressive in elevation. But the picturesque scenery and the variety of views beat out many other mountain ranges. If you want to see a bit of everything –  from meadows to snow and lakes – Banff is the place to experience them.

You can rent canoes, go horseback riding, or hike on the many trails. Iconic accommodations are available scattered throughout the area.

Can you really think of a better outdoor adventure than trekking around the Banff National Park in Alberta?

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Banff National Park (And Eight More Places to Visit in Banff, Canada)