Hello, as part of my rtw trip I am going to Banff after New York. Its not something I was planning, but when I went to book my ticket they said I could have more flights for free so I picked Calgary (which is full because of the stampede) so I am staying in Banff. I had heard some saying their son went there and it an was amazing place.
I have 10 days in all around this area and have so far just booked a hostel for the 1st 6 days in Banff. As this was a last mintue thing I dont know much about the area and was wondering if anyone can help me out a bit please. I will look online and in books etc but I always think personal experience is better. Where else is good to go or should I just book another 4 days in Banff. What things are there to do? any hints or tips would be cool.
Thanks very much in advance
I worked in Banff for 8 months, two years ago.
It is a fantastic area. I would recommend not tying yourself to a hostel in Banff for more than 6 days in case you decide you want to go to another town, like Jasper, or Lake Louise, Golden. You can catch a bus to many of these different towns.
Side note, if you go up to Lake Louise, make a side trip and go to Moraine Lake. It is as pretty if not more pretty than Lake Louise.
If you like to party or want to go out, all the locals (the people who are working there) go out on Sunday nights. It is usually packed everywhere. Also, Melissa's has amazing breakfasts.
I would also recommend finding a tour group and go into the Stampede for a day.
I lived in calgary for 2 years and 1 year in Jasper.
You will LOVE Alberta. The best book I found is Canadian Rockies Access Guide.
THere is so much to do in Banff when it comes to hiking.
Also the drive from Banff to Jasper is amazing and there are several waterfalls Athabasca and Sunwapta, and of course the major icefield, Columbia.
IN calgary there is lots to do, go downtown to Au Claire Market, very cool. Also 17th Ave, Kensington is a very cool area. You can bike all along the river which is very fun too.
Have any more questions just let me know!!
If you have a rental car, you are less than an hours drive to Calgary, so go on and take in some of the Stampede. As well head to the Kananaskis. You can rent mountain bikes if that floats your boat and ride many paths easy and difficult through the area. Or if you want a challenge try riding the "Powderface Trail". If you want to venture further, head east of Calgary to Drumheller and see the Tyrell Museum if you like dinosaurs this place will dazzle you.
If you wish to see some Cowboy and Indian culture I suggest Head Smashed In Buffalo Jump interpretive center, and while down that way the Bar U Ranch. If you really are interested in driving, head south to the "Crowsnest Pass" and go to "Frank Slide"
And if you would like to visit some hot springs, go west into Radium or Fairmont. Golfing is great there as well.
www.travelalberta.com is a good website.
Have fun, there is loads to offer around these parts.
Thanks great, thanks very much guys.
I'm from alberta and my favorite place in that area would have to be Panorama Village, especially if you enjoy hiking. Check out the Earl Grey trail or hike up Hopeful Valley, Mineral Valley is also amazing. Make sure to stop in at the Jackpine and say hi to Bruce. Banff is a bit too touristy for me but is still a wonderful place. Lake lousie is Beautiful.