The Ultimate Vancouver to Banff Road Trip

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Thinking of visiting Canada and need to see just a little piece of what this nice nation provides? Well, a visit from Vancouver, Canada’s metropolitan jewel, via Canada’s Rocky Mountains all the best way to Banff, Canada’s premier mountain city, is a good way to see a few of it’s rugged magnificence whereas first having fun with British Columbia’s largest metropolis.

Driving through the Canadian Rockies
Driving via the Canadian Rockies

First you’ll begin your journey in a metropolitan paradise then alongside the best way you’ll see extra waterfalls, lakes and scorching springs than you possibly can keep in mind, various resort model lake cities you received’t quickly neglect then drive via a few of Canada’s highest mountain peaks and eventually arrive in some of the well-known mountain resort cities in North America.

A fast observe on Canadian Geography and Distances

While being from Canada means we’re typically resistant to it’s many charms, we do know {that a} go to to Canada is on many peoples journey bucket listing. Covering an enormous portion of land between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans and as far north because the North Pole, the terrain and other people you’ll meet in Canada are as different as anyplace you’ll discover on Earth.

Starting on the west coast you’ve got attractive coastal areas main into the majestic Rocky Mountains adopted by miles of grassy rolling hills that result in seemingly by no means ending prairies within the heart of Canada. From there you hit the numerous small lakes and hills of the rock lined Canadian Shield earlier than lastly arriving on the Great Lakes themselves which then leads you the Appalachian Uplands and again right down to the Atlantic ocean. And that’s provided that you journey in a straight line!

Over the years we’ve met quite a few vacationers who’ve requested if they will land in Toronto and drive to Vancouver in just a few days. Well, to be blunt, that’s a 40+ hour straight drive with no stops via 5 provinces and is over 4,200 km or 2600 miles in distance.

If you truly wished to drive Canada back and forth you’re over 80 hours of driving (7100 km or 4400 miles) and that doesn’t embody ferry time to Vancouver Island.

Needless to say, visiting Canada from Coast by automobile is far more than you’re going to handle in a weekend or perhaps a few weeks for those who truly need to expertise any of our different nation. It’s additionally why Canadians are likely to measure our distances in hours relatively than kilometers and also you’ll see that occuring proper throughout the nation. Finally, for those who’re renting a automobile to your travels, be sure to get automobile insurance coverage now.

The Ultimate Vancouver to Banff Road Trip

One fashionable driving route that we do typically advocate to guests is the Vancouver to Banff highway journey. It’s a lovely 10 hour drive via the Rocky Mountains that has loads of issues to supply it doesn’t matter what time of 12 months you get right here. Of course, stopping and trying out the websites isn’t included in that 10 hour timeframe so select when and the place to cease as you see match.

So, sit again and benefit from the trip as we current to you the final word Vancouver to Banff highway journey with just a few doable stops and issues to see alongside the best way.

This listing is certainly not all encompassing however we are going to embody just a few notes on issues to take a look at if time or the season permits. Also, when you can simply drive this distance in a day, we advocate taking just a few days to get there to cease and luxuriate in just a few of the areas highlights alongside the best way.

Plenty of locations to cease alongside the best way

We begin our journey in British Colombia’s largest heart and Canada’s third largest metropolis (after Toronto and Montreal). Sitting simply north of Seattle, Vancouver is a superb mix of nature and concrete dwelling with mile excessive skyscrapers overlooking dozens of lovely parks and much more lovely coastal waterways. The total metropolis is nestled in a big valley with ocean on one aspect and mountains on the opposite.

Vancouver, British Columbia

Whether you’re jogging alongside the miles and miles of paved paths on the well-known Vancouver Seawall, enjoyable on the clear sands at Kitsilano Beach, trying out the eating places and pubs in cobblestoned Gastown, ordering a microbrew on Granville Island or trying out Canada’s largest city park (the famed Stanley Park), Vancouver doubtless has one thing so that you can take pleasure in.

Aquabus at Granville Island Vancouver

Some of the opposite nice issues to see and do in Vancouver embody visiting the Vancouver Aquarium, touring the Granville Island Public Market, viewing the Museum of Anthropology on the sprawling grounds of the University of British Columbia, trying out the Orpheum Theatre for it’s world famend sympathy orchestra, going excessive finish buying alongside Robson Street, using the Aquabus alongside False Creek From Hornby to Granville to The Village, climbing up grueling Grouse Mountain, visiting the Capilano Salmon Hatchery and taking the children to the all the time spectacular Science World.

Museum of Anthropology Vancouver
Museum of Anthropology Vancouver

Vancouver is taken into account a foodie’s dream come true with dozens of meals and taste’s calling the town dwelling. With tons of cafes, pubs, bars and eating places starting from world class avenue meals to a few of North America’s most interesting eating, Vancouver can be dwelling to Canada’s largest Chinatown.

English Bay from Vanier Park Vancouver
English Bay from Vanier Park Vancouver

It’s over a century previous and in addition third in measurement in North America solely to New York’s and San Francisco’s. Vancouver’s Chinatown is overflowing with oriental meals and delicacies in addition to many unique spices and items.

Ducks on Misty Beaver Lake Stanley Park Vancouver

If you get uninterested in the city life, not removed from Vancouver’s metropolis heart you possibly can head north to Capilano Suspension Bridge Park and cross some breathtakingly excessive ravines or have a treetop stroll in a real coastal rainforest. We truly favor going a bit farther north to Lynn Canyon Park the place the costs are cheaper however both place might be value bringing your cameras for those who worth suspension bridges, waterfalls, deep ravines, gigantic timber and being fully surrounded in nature.

What to do, see and eat in Vancouver, British Columbia. Looking at the Burrard Street Bridge from Granville Island Vancouver

If you crave nightlife, the Granville Entertainment District is the place to be Vancouver (particularly Friday and Saturday nights) with an extended strip of nightclubs and sufficient neon lights to make Vegas proud. Gastown has tons of late evening eats with quite a lot of pubs and micro breweries thrown in for good measure, Yaletown has some increased finish bars, Kitsilano has among the finest sportsbars within the metropolis and for those who’re searching for different existence, then Davie Village is the place to be.

After you’ve had your fill of Vancouver, it’s time to move east down Canada’s solely transcontinental freeway, Highway 1.

Coquitlam, Surrey and Abbottsford, British Columbia

The Greater Vancouver space encompasses a number of communities nonetheless it’s exhausting to discern the place one space ends and one other begins as you permit the town. Soon you’ll be passing via Burnaby, dwelling to the Simon Fraser University and the three storied juggernaut, Metrotown, BC’s largest mall. If you’ve got some buying you need to do, fairly certain you’ll discover it at Metrotown.

Next areas on the listing you’ve got Port Moody and Coquitlam to your north (dwelling to Mundy Park, a big city park with nice strolling trails and a couple of small lakes) and New Westminster to your south (well-known for stylish pubs and it’s cool Quayside Park the place you possibly can watch huge boats transferring up and down the waterways).

Next you’ll cross the enduring Port Mann Bridge (be sure to have your digital camera prepared) sitting over the mighty Fraser River, British Columbia’s longest river and famend for it’s glorious fishing. The Fraser River additionally incorporates a lot of BC’s bigger hydro electrical dams to the north and meets the ocean not too removed from right here so giant boats might be seen on both aspect of the bridge in any respect hours of the day.

Soon you’ll be arriving in Surrey and for those who love previous electrical trams then you possibly can take a look at the Fraser Valley Heritage Railway the place you get to trip an previous streetcar and find out about Vancouvers electrical practice historical past. If it’s a scorching day, White Rock is a extremely popular seaside and if you wish to miss the crowds then Crescent Beach can be fashionable however typically much less crowded.

The subsequent metropolis on the listing is Abbottsford. Well recognized for it’s glorious blueberries in late summer time (be sure to cease off the freeway and purchase a basket of them to your Vancouver to Banff highway journey), it additionally homes Clayburn Village with a terrific little previous model sweet store and tea home that’s value a peruse.

Chilliwack, British Columbia

As you permit Abbottsford, you’ve got some selections to make relying on the time of 12 months and what you worth most. Chilliwack is an efficient sized working metropolis nevertheless it’s best points of interest misinform the south and the east of the town correct. Essentially, if it’s summer season, you possibly can head south for a enjoyable day at Cultus Lake Adventure Park, an enormous sprawling waterpark with rides and amusements for the entire household. It’s a assured enjoyable day and we now have associates that make the pilgrimage on the market each summer time with their children.

If you need to get out and see nature (and have some lovely photos), ensure you take a look at Bridal Veil Falls Waterfall to the east of Chilliwack. The falls are lovely to see nearly all of the 12 months and there’s some nice mountaineering within the space. The falls are a vertical 10 minute hike so ensure you’re up for it however most individuals don’t have any drawback mountaineering as much as see them.

Agassiz and Hope, British Columbia

On the opposite aspect of Chilliwack, you’ll be driving into Agassiz. It’s a sleepy little neighborhood nonetheless now you’ve got a alternative of constant on to Hope or to driving as much as Harrison Hot Springs. We love staying in Harrison Hot Springs nonetheless it’s not as a lot as a fast cease as it’s a vacation spot in it’s personal proper. Nestled alongside the shores of picturesque Harrison Lake lies Harrison Hot Springs Resort (and for which the neighboring city is known as for).

Fun in the family pool at Harrison Hot Springs

With 5 spring fed scorching mineral swimming pools on website, it’s straightforward to lounge the day (and evening away). While the as soon as opulent resort has seen higher days, it’s the one place on the town to totally soak within the pure swimming pools. While pool use is included along with your keep, they generally enable day passes. Please verify earlier than you go although simply to make sure.

View from room at Harrison Hot Springs Resort and Spa

Regardless of whether or not you cease in Harrison Hot Springs, ensure you refill your automobile in Hope. It’s nicely over an hour till you’ll see the following gasoline station in Merritt.

From Hope you’ll be getting off the Trans Canada Highway #1 and taking freeway #5, the Coquihalla Highway. Not solely will it pace up your travels, this newer freeway takes you previous the unforgettable Othello Tunnels.

The Othello Tunnels had been first constructed again in 1914 as a part of the Kettle Valley Railroad and embody a collection of 5 giant tunnels initially constructed for railway entry however had been closed down within the 60’s and at the moment are a part of the Trans Canada Trail system (a walkable path that spans the size of Canada). Constructed via a mountain of native granite and linked by trestles over the 300m excessive Coquihalla Gorge, the Othello Tunnels aren’t one thing that ought to be missed.

As you permit the trestles, benefit from the surroundings as you cruise alongside Canada’s famed Highway Through Hell, as seen on the Discovery Channel. Don’t fear, until you occur to be driving via a snowstorm you’ll be fantastic (and even then simply decelerate and also you’ll be fantastic). In the summer time it’s a pleasant drive as you arrive into Merritt.

Merritt, British Columbia

Merritt is legendary for it’s yearly nation music competition, the Rockin River Music Fest that it holds in the direction of the tip of July yearly. Famous nation singers from Willie Nelson to Toby Keith to Travis Tritt to Keith Urban to Tim McGraw have graced its stage and frolicked of their enormous campground.

As you permit Merritt, you’re going to need to depart Highway 5 and head south down Highway 5A in the direction of Kelowna. If you didn’t refill in Hope then undoubtedly refill earlier than you permit Merritt because it’s one other hour and 20 minutes earlier than you get into Kelowna and see your first gasoline station. Highway 5A will develop into the Okanagan Connector at one level so simply keep on Highway 97 in the direction of Kelowna and also you’ll be fantastic.

Meadowview dormitory across the corn maze at Tranquille Padova City Kamloops
Meadowview dormitory at Kamloops, BC

If time is of the essence and also you’re in a rush to get to Banff then be happy to avoid wasting your self a half hour in your roadtrip from Vancouver to Banff and preserve going alongside Highway 5 to Kamloops the place you’ll be leaping again on Highway 1 heading East for the rest of your journey. Just observe you’ll be lacking a variety of lovely websites and considered one of British Columbia’s finest areas, the Okanagan Valley.

Kelowna, British Columbia

Now we could be biased (since we’re at present based mostly out of Kelowna) nonetheless Kelowna and the Okanagan have a ton to supply individuals. From award successful wineries to lovely seashores and beautiful parks, the Okanagan Valley in BC is a superb place to be and one of many warmest areas in Canada. The major spotlight is the 135 km (84 mi) lengthy Okanagan Lake that ties the valley collectively (additionally one of many solely lakes in Canada that by no means freezes).

Kelowna Wine Half

With over 182 licenced wineries within the valley, for those who’re a wine lover you possibly can spend days simply hopping from one winery to a different. If you like cider there are dozens of cideries plus tons of microbrewers as nicely in Kelowna correct.

Overlooking Okanagan Lake on Knox Mountain in Kelowna BC

While after all we will’t listing all of them, for those who solely have time for just a few wineries then these are a few of our favorites with probably the most atmosphere (although not essentially our favourite wines) and those we’ll typically convey new guests to see:

West Kelowna:

  • Mission Hill Family Estate Winery – Fabulous structure excessive on the hill and gorgeously manicured grounds, this place is taken into account royalty within the valley.
  • Quails Gate Winery – As nicely as having a scrumptious restaurant, they allow you to wander across the rows of vines and in addition provide an inexpensive tour (when obtainable) to point out behind the scenes of a working winery.
Kelowna Quails Gate Winery
Kelowna Quails Gate Winery

Kelowna:

  • Summerhill Pyramid Winery – Known for his or her white pyramid and good views throughout the lake on the other aspect of Mission and Quails Gate in addition they have a preferred restaurant.
  • Soma Craft Cidery – Nestled within the woods in a park like setting on the east aspect of Kelowna, this place has scrumptious cider, a Farm Inn you possibly can keep at and llamas you possibly can feed.
  • BC Tree Fruits Cider Co – This place is a part of a fruit packing plant within the industrial part of Kelowna so isn’t fairly just like the others on this listing nonetheless the cider is tasty (they usually have a big choice) plus you possibly can stroll subsequent door to their market the place they’ve a dozen completely different native apples you should buy 12 months spherical to take pleasure in in your roadtrip.
Crabapples at Tranquille Farm Fresh Kamloops
Crabapples

Lake Country:

  • Grey Monk Estate Winery – Scenic drive and attractive port (strive it with chocolate!) on the best way in the direction of Vernon. It’s well worth the drive plus there are 2 different stylish vineyards (Ex Nihilio and ArrowLeaf which might be only some blocks away) which have nice meals in season (be sure to e-book first for those who’re desirous to eat at both place in the summertime although.)

If you’re keen on fruit, there are orchards in every single place within the valley with fruit stands in every single place promoting every little thing from 50 completely different apple varieties (September to October with some obtainable at BC Tree Fruits close to 12 months spherical) to among the finest peaches you’ll discover anyplace on earth (mid July to early September). Cherries are in season the start of July and there are many u-pick facilities for those who’ve by no means had the nice fortune of selecting them straight off a tree (simply strive to not eat all of them so you’ve got some to take with you on the remainder of your roadtrip).

Cherry Picking in Kelowna at Arndt Orchards
Cherry Picking in Kelowna at Arndt Orchards

We’ve written a number of guides on enjoyable issues to do in Kelowna so I received’t rewrite all of it right here however you’ve got the lake and dozens of seashores in the summertime and Big White, an internationally acclaimed ski resort simply half-hour south of Kelowna within the winter that may rival any ski hill on earth. For the remainder of the 12 months you’ve got tons of nice trails, hikes, pubs, eating places and actions to make your time right here fly by.

Kelowna City Park Hot Sands Beach
Hot Sands Beach

As you permit Kelowna east on Highway 97 in the direction of Vernon, be sure to concentrate to the lakes on the suitable. The excessive on the hill view of inexperienced tinged mineral Kalamalka Lake is all the time spectacular and shortly you’ll be in Vernon which additionally occurs to be concerning the midpoint of your journey from Vancouver to Banff. Congrats for making it this far!

Vernon, British Colombia

Vernon has tons to supply together with one other nicely beloved ski hill, Silverstar Mountain. If you’re right here within the winter and luxuriate in downhill snowboarding then it’s one other nice possibility after Big White.

Vernon additionally has a number of seaside areas (some on Kalamalka and a few on Okanagan Lake) and can be dwelling to Splashdown Vernon, a small however enjoyable outside waterpark. Vernon can be filled with eating places and has a preferred brewery (OK Brewery) proper on the town that provides excursions.

Okanagan Spirits Vernon distillation system
distillation system

Vernon can be dwelling to Okanagan Spirits Craft Distillery and for those who like whisky and gin or fruit infused spirits then undoubtedly swing by and style their liqueurs and seize a bottle to take dwelling with you.

As you proceed out of Vernon on Highway 97A North, you’ll quickly go via Armstrong.

Armstrong, British Columbia

Armstrong, recognized all through Canada for his or her Armstrong Cheese and particularly their squeaky cheese, the corporate sadly not provides excursions at their manufacturing unit. If you’re feeling a bit peckish, be happy to cease at The Village Cheese Company for some artisan cheese samples and small tour. They even have their very own model of squeaky cheese for those who’ve by no means had it!

If you’re keen on kitschy freeway stops, then be sure to cease on the Log Barn 1912 earlier than you attain Enderby. Don’t fear about recognizing it, there are a dozen indicators pointing to it and if the massive dinosaurs, dragons and sculptures sitting outdoors don’t catch your consideration then you definately actually shouldn’t be driving! There’s a store inside with ice cream, sweet and wacky souvenirs in addition to a fast stroll across the grounds offers you a minute to stretch your legs.

Enderby, British Columbia

Enderby is a cute little city nevertheless it’s main declare to fame is the Starlight Drive-In. The 6,000 sq. foot display to the south of city is the most important drive-in film display in North America and one of many final in Canada. Operating from June till September, it makes a terrific evening out with the household. If you occur to make it then and determine to catch a film, Salmon Arm is simply 20 minutes away and has extra inns than Enderby does.

If you don’t want a spot to sleep, then proceed up Highway 97A in the direction of Sicamous. This is a beautiful drive proper alongside the sting of Mara Lake and when you’ll doubtless lose 10 minutes relatively than going up via Salmon Arm I promise you’ll take pleasure in it.

Sicamous, British Columbia

As you arrive into Sicamous correct, you’ll have to take a proper onto Highway 1 heading east. Don’t fear, you’ll keep on Highway 1 for the remainder of your final Vancouver to Banff roadtrip so don’t fear about maps for some time. Just go east wayward traveler.

When we go via Sicamous we regularly refill our gasoline tank. Soon we’ll be crossing into the Rockies and gasoline costs go up 10 cents a liter when you hit Revelstoke. Weirdly, Golden is all the time cheaper than Revelstoke and is another choice for those who can simply make it one other 220 km in your present tank.

If you take pleasure in dairy farms and ice cream, then D Dutchmen Dairy in Sicamous is a should cease. Fresh do-it-yourself ice cream and the power to stroll via an actual working dairy farm with cows and a small menagerie of animals out again. They even have a terrific little fruit and veggie stand (the final actual one in your journey) proper throughout the road from June to September. Follow the indicators as you flip onto Highway 1 and it is going to be in your proper.

We now proceed our highway journey in the direction of Revelstoke nonetheless first we now have 2 attention-grabbing stops you may need to take a look at. First up is Crazy Creek Hot Pools, about 20 minutes east of Sicamous. This little 4 season roadside resort provides scorching spring to it’s weary vacationers from 9am to 9pm one year a 12 months. Best half is that no reservations are required so for those who’re up for a scorching dip then nothing is stopping you.

5 Minutes additional down the highway from the new springs you’ve got the sister points of interest of The Enchanted Forest and SkyTrek Adventure Park. Both are open from June to September. The Enchanted Forest is a nature stroll via a magical land of castles, miniature homes and an enormous treehouse whereas SkyTrek is an aerial journey park that may have you ever climbing, leaping and zip lining from one treetop platform to a different.

10 minutes east of the journey park you’ll discover Three Valley Gap the place you’ll catch a glimpse of historical past as this previous ghost city harkens again to the 1800’s and pioneer days of a British Columbia western city. The distinct Three Valley Lake Chateau on the banks of the lake additionally makes a terrific image spot earlier than you retain heading east to Revelstoke.

Revelstoke, British Columbia

Revelstoke is an previous practice city with loads of ties to the railroad. We all the time take pleasure in strolling alongside the raging Columbia River as we pull into city to stretch our legs a bit. If you flip proper instantly as you cross the bridge there’s a small park subsequent to the highway. Leave your automobile within the parking zone then comply with the pathway left beneath the practice bridge.

If you’re keen on trains than the Revelstoke practice museum shouldn’t be missed and for those who’re there when it’s open, a fast 30 minute guided tour of the Revelstoke Hydro Dam makes for an attention-grabbing diversion.

Lake Revelstoke from Mount Revelstoke British Columbia Canada
An elevated view of Lake Revelstoke from Mount Revelstoke British Columbia Canada on a stormy day

Another fashionable attraction in Revelstoke is Revelstoke Mountain Resort. In the summer time they’ve downhill biking and the Pipe Mountain Coaster, which options 1.4 kilometres of twists and turns as you hurtle down a mountain on a small rollercoaster whereas travelling at speeds of as much as 42 kph. In the winter the park receives 30 to 40 ft of snow and the ski hill encompasses a descent of 1,713 vertical meters (5,620 ft) – probably the most in North America.

Heading east down Highway 1, we’re now on our approach to Golden, BC.

Glacier and Rogers Pass, British Columbia

As we depart Revelstoke, we quickly attain Skunk Cabbage Boardwalk Trail and Giant Cedars Boardwalk Trail. Both are enormously named and enjoyable little hikes. The one you don’t need to miss although is Giant Cedars Boardwalk. It’s a fast 20 minute stroll alongside a nicely signed picket boardwalk via among the largest cedar timber you’re ever more likely to discover.

Only a couple of minutes farther up the freeway you’ll discover Alberta Canyon and the Canyon Hot Springs Resort. Unlike Crazy Creek, these scorching swimming pools are solely open from May to September they usually additionally provide cabins and campsites for those who’re making the journey pulling a camper of RV.

From Revelstoke to Golden you’re going to be climbing like loopy with the height simply between Glacier and Rogers Pass. This is the best level of the Trans-Canada freeway so be proud. You made it to the highest and now it’s simply easy crusing from right here on out. If you want a little bit of a stretch ensure you take a look at the Rogers Pass National Historic Site. If it’s the center of winter, simply take an image of these 20 foot tall snowbanks to every aspect of your automobile as you proceed east to Golden.

Right earlier than you get to Golden, you’ll attain the Northern Lights Wildlife Wolf Centre. It’s a wolf habitat and interpretive heart that’s open to excursions 12 months spherical (no reservations required) and will get you up shut and private with some actual North American wolves.

Golden, British Columbia

Golden is a superb mountain city that all the time surprises us with the brand new issues we discover to do there. One factor to do is you possibly can take a look at the Golden SkyBridge. Open from June to October, Canada’s highest suspension bridge traverses 426 ft above an extensive canyon and encompasses a zipline, climbing ropes and a canyon swing for those who can deal with your heights.

If you’re keen on water and adrenaline, Golden is Canada’s whitewater rafting capital with a number of white water rafting corporations working on the town. Rafting excursions run alongside the quick flowing Kicking Horse River all summer time lengthy and most rafting corporations have workplaces both in Golden or simply east of the town.

If you need to stretch your legs, there’s a lovely lined pedestrian bridge spanning a portion of the river subsequent to the Porcelain Garden park near downtown. There are a number of eating places and pubs close by as nicely if you wish to seize a chunk to eat.

As we depart Golden, we’ll quickly discover ourselves in a unique province and a unique time zone so get able to set your clocks an hour ahead!

Before that although, you may need to pull over in just a few areas (like Faeder Lake, Finn Creek or Natural Bridge) and take some photos. From Golden to Lake Louise the rivers and lakes begin taking over a turquoise glow on account of their excessive readability and mineral content material that’s exhausting to withstand photographing. From little waterfalls right here and there to among the most breathtaking mountain surroundings, your head might be whipping aspect to aspect by no means figuring out which aspect of the automobile try to be wanting.

If you’re fortunate you’ll spot an enormous grizzly or perhaps an enormous moose. Bighorn sheep and huge elk are additionally typically noticed alongside the highways and for those who see a bunch of vehicles pulled over or clumped collectively there’s a superb likelihood there’s an animal close by.

Field, British Columbia

One factor you’ll want as you drive in the direction of Banff and Lake Louise is a National Park Pass. Park passes might be purchased forward of time or from sure distributors. Visitors arriving from Calgary and the west can simply buy their passes as they go into the Banff National Park nonetheless guests coming from the east don’t have entry to a kiosk. It’s prompt so that you can both pre-purchase one on-line right here or at one of many accredited areas just like the Yoho National Park Visitor Center simply off Highway 1 in Field.

The excellent news is that if you are going to buy a National Park go for the 12 months, they’re good throughout the nation and this go additionally offers you entry to breathtaking Takakkaw Falls on the opposite aspect of Field. So does a day go so don’t fret, you simply get extra time to discover this cool area.

Walking across the bridge at Takakkaw Falls
Walking throughout the bridge at Takakkaw Falls

Takakkaw Falls in Yoho National Park is accessible June to October and might be reached by a ten minute drive alongside Yoho Valley Road simply off Highway 1 a couple of minutes previous Field. There is a pleasant park on the finish and a brief 10 minute stroll (1.3km) that may convey you within reach of Takakkaw Falls. With a complete peak of 373 metres (1,224 ft) and a single drop of 254 metres (833 ft), this glacier fed physique of water makes them the second tallest waterfall in Canada.

As we head east and eventually cross into Alberta, set your clocks forward 1 hour…. Now!

Lake Louise, Alberta

Beautiful turquoise lake? Check. Beautiful chateau? Check. World class snowboarding? Double verify.

What Lake Louise lacks in facilities, it makes up for with unrivalled magnificence. If you possibly can ignore the hordes of individuals, strolling across the cloudy turquoise waters of Lake Louise might be magical.

Whether you lease a canoe and discover the lake from above the water or determine to seize your strolling sneakers and head to the suitable previous Chateau Lake Louise alongside Lakeshore Trail is as much as you. Walking to the tip of the path or simply stopping on one of many many benches and simply having fun with the relative quiet in comparison with the principle space, now is an ideal time to take an image. If you may get one with one of many crimson canoes framed excellent you may even determine to border it.

If you occur to be right here within the winter, when you received’t have the ability to see that turquoise glow, you could be fortunate sufficient to strap on some skates and skate over it. Nicely groomed for many of the winter, you possibly can lease skates proper by the water or on the town. Feel free to take a look at another close by lakes for skating as nicely.

While Lake Louise will get all the eye, Moirane Lake is equally as fairly and a few even suppose it’s prettier. Regardless, it’s undoubtedly much less busy and has some tougher hikes for those who’re so inclined to take them.

Another nice hike individuals take pleasure in is the hike as much as the Lake Agnes Tea House. While it’s not a loopy far, the 7.2km spherical journey hike does play on you for those who’re not accustomed to mountaineering at this elevation.

Skiing and snow boarding are after all the opposite half of Lake Louise’s attraction. When the bottom begins to freeze and the snows come thick, Lake Louise turns into one the most effective ski hills within the nation. On good winter days, it’s not unusual to see a gentle line of vehicles driving in from Calgary and the freeway seems to be extra like a dwelling being relatively than pavement.

If you occur to be staying in Lake Louise itself, Chateau Lake Louise is a beautiful possibility nonetheless there are extra choices on the town plus some nice hearth pubs to cozy as much as anytime of the 12 months.

Finally, even when it’s the center of summer time, take a gondola trip up the ski hill. You’re nearly assured to see some wildlife and the view from the highest makes the gondola trip so value it. If it’s winter, seize you board and luxuriate in!

As we take our ultimate leg east in the direction of Banff, it’s time to congratulate your self. You’ve simply made it via among the worst passages on the earth and lived to inform the story. Now simply think about these courageous women and men who first crossed these mountains and tamed that wilderness to get us the place we at the moment are. 2 months travels in beneath 9 hours of driving. Love it!

If you’ve got just a little extra time (roughly an additional 20 minutes) and need to see some extra attractive nation with a greater likelihood to stand up shut with animals and nature, leaping off of Highway 1 in Lake Louise and heading to Banff alongside Highway 1A (the Bow Valley Parkway) is a strong alternative (simply make sure the roads are absolutely open first). Castle Cliff, Silverton Falls, Johnston Canyon, Backswamp and Bow Valley Parkway are all picturesque diversions.

If you’re right here to ski or snowboard, Sunshine Mountain is one other nice ski hill and is commonly the primary hill to open yearly. With some epic snowfall, it’s all the time a favourite with locals.

Banff, Alberta

As we lastly pull into Canada’s premier mountain city, the urge to occasion all evening might be sturdy. Don’t give in, although the occasion by no means stops in Banff, you’ve simply had an extended day and it’s time for a relaxation.

In the morning you possibly can take a look at a few of Banff’s finest websites and actions. From snowboarding close by Mount Norquay within the winter to using up Sulphur mountain on the Gondola in summer time there’s loads to do. (If you’re up for climbing the hill your self they provide you a free raise down! Budget 2 strong hours.)

You can hike or bike right down to lovely Bow Falls, drive up Tunnel Mountain searching for elk (they’re in every single place up there) or take a look at the sulfuric delights of the Banff Cave and Basin National Historic Site. There are horseback excursions, biking excursions, boating excursions and even canyon and rappelling excursions.

Moraine Lake by by James Wheeler on Flickr
Moraine Lake by by James Wheeler on Flickr

Of course you’ll need to take a look at the Rocky Mountain Chocolate manufacturing unit and eat at some high class eating places when you’re right here. Whether you keep on the Banff Fairmont Springs or not, you undoubtedly have to drive up there and stroll across the place as nicely. The resort exudes previous world appeal and is certainly value trying out.

After all that driving, you’ll doubtless need to soak your troubles away within the Banff Upper Hot Springs. Open 12 months spherical these, the naturally fed scorching springs are a good way to unwind after just a few exhausting days behind the wheel.

With that, we’re on the finish. We hope you loved your final Vancouver to Banff roadtrip and hope you get to proceed to discover extra of Canada throughout your journey.

Getting again to Calgary and different notes

While there are not any industrial airports in Banff, many individuals select to land or depart Banff via Calgary because it’s a significant metropolis and fewer than an hour from Banff by automobile or bus shuttle. If you’re flying in from Toronto, the east coast of Canada or another nation, simply reverse this listing and begin on the backside and also you’ll be fantastic.

Calgary Stampede entrance 2017

Let us know if we forgot something that ought to be on this listing. Safe travels and welcome to Canada!

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