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Canada's Rockies In-a-Week

A classic 7-day itinerary with key activities in four parks

Yoho Valley, Yoho NP British Columbia Canada

This classic one-week Canadian Rocky Mountains itinerary takes in most of the high-profile sights in four national parks, provides the chance to do quite a few short hikes, and includes a day for another outdoor activity like rafting or mountain biking. The itinerary's best done from Calgary to reduce travel time, but can be adapted to work from Edmonton.

DAY 1: Banff

From Calgary head to the town of Banff, park downtown and wander Banff Avenue, its main shopping street, before walking the Bow Falls Loop and treating yourself to drink at the grandiose Banff Springs Hotel. Stop in at the Banff Park Museum on the way back and you’ll have acquired a good insight into Victorian-era Banff.

Read the full content in the app
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The Athabasca Glacier

Hike or 4x4 a glacier

Banff Gondola & Sulphur Mountain

A pricey route to great views

Banff Park Museum

Victorian-era natural history

Banff Springs Hotel

Iconic 5-star Gothic hotel ($$$$) + dining (b,l,d; $$+)

Banff Upper Hot Springs

Soak in the shadow of the Rockies

Bow Falls Loop

Best easy hike from downtown: 1.5hrs/Easy/5km

Cavell Meadows

Meadows with great mountain & glacier views: 2 hikes: 1.5/4hrs

Four Lakes Mountain Bike Tour

Scenic trails close to town: 2hrs/10km/moderate

Glacier Sky Walk

The Sunwapta Valley for those without vertigo!

The Icefield Centre

Columbia Icefield views & info

Jasper Visitor Centre

Jasper National Park & town info service

Kindersley-Sinclair Col

Kootenay NP's best day-hike (7hrs/18km/moderate)

Kootenay & Radium Visitor Centre

Park & town info service

Laggan’s Mountain Bakery

Popular café & bakery (b,l; $)

Maligne Canyon

Spectacular gorge, nice stroll, but busy

Maligne Lake

The largest Rockies lake: beautiful & popular

Marble Canyon

Busy and short waterfall & canyon walk

Moraine Lake

Lake Louise's little sister

Mount Norquay

Banff's ski area: convenient, fun & steep! + Via Ferrata

Paint Pots

Sacred aboriginal source of ochre

Radium Hot Springs (resort)

Classic, but very busy Rockies' hot spring

Sunshine Meadows

Easy access to alpine meadows on the Continental Divide

Tunnel Mountain

Best hike from downtown for views: 2hrs/Moderate/5km

Wilcox Pass

Meadows hike & great icefield views: 3.5hrs/Moderate/8km

Yoho National Park Visitor Centre

Yoho's park info & permit centre

Text © Christian Williams

Images by C Williams, Jonathan Mueller