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Alberta, Canada National parks

Our most recommended Alberta, Canada National parks

Banff: Banff Gondola Admission Ticket

1. Banff: Banff Gondola Admission Ticket

Climb aboard this iconic 4-person gondola cabin with large windows and relax. During the 8-minute ride to the summit of Sulphur Mountain, take in the views of the town of Banff, Bow Valley, and six different mountain ranges. While on the mountain's peak, be amazed by 360-degree views. Explore the interactive Above Banff Interpretative Center to learn about the early explorers, wildlife, and local area. Hike across the Sulphur Mountain boardwalk to explore the Sulphur Mountain Cosmic Ray Station, a National Historic Site. Then stop at the coffee shops, restaurants, and gift shops.

Jasper: Wildlife & Waterfalls Tour with Maligne Lake Cruise

2. Jasper: Wildlife & Waterfalls Tour with Maligne Lake Cruise

Following a pick-up from your accommodation in Jasper, climb aboard a 21-seat tour bus for a comfortable drive up the valley. Your first stop will be at Maligne Canyon. Enjoy an easy 30-minute walk and see the deepest portion at 164 feet, including a thundering waterfall. Re-board your bus and drive on through stunning landscapes en route to Medicine Lake. Here the tour will make a 10-minute stop for photos, and your guide will explain why this is known locally as the "disappearing lake." Continue on to Maligne Lake and take a 90-minute scenic cruise to Spirit Island. Throughout the day, look out for Canada’s famous wildlife, such as abundant moose, the odd black bear, and even a grizzly.

Maligne Canyon Icewalk Discovery Tour

3. Maligne Canyon Icewalk Discovery Tour

Discover one of Jasper’s most impressive natural wonders. Meet your friendly and highly trained tour guide before journeying to the bottom of the Maligne Canyon – the deepest accessible canyon in Jasper National Park. Explore frozen waterfalls, ice caves, and incredible ice formations, marveling at the power of nature. Learn about Jasper’s Maligne Valley, Karst topography, and the mystery of the “disappearing” Medicine Lake.  Be sure to take photographs by the stunning geological features, and the huge frozen waterfalls. The Maligne Canyon Icewalk Tour is a great option for anyone who does not ski or snowboard. Or if you are hitting the pistes, get a full morning on the slopes and then head to the canyon for the afternoon. 

Lake Louise: Open-Top Shuttle to Moraine and Lake Louise

4. Lake Louise: Open-Top Shuttle to Moraine and Lake Louise

Hop aboard an open-top double-decker to discover Lake Louise and Moraine Lake. Snap photos of unparalleled scenery, immerse yourself in the Canadian Rockies, and learn about the area from a local host. Board your bus at the Lake Louise Ski Resort and head to the lakes. Once there, marvel at the Canadian Rockies, including the famous Mt. Victoria and Valley of the Ten Peaks. Take time for yourself once at the lakes. Go on one of the many hiking trails accessible from the drop-off areas or relax at the shore. After some free time, ride the open-top bus to the next lake before returning to the Lake Louise Ski Resort. Tickets are valid all day, with buses departing every hour from the Lake Louise Ski Resort from 8:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. Choose your departure time from the Ski Resort and then enjoy a flexible return time from Lake Louise and Moraine Lake. The bus departs Lake Louise once an hour on the half-hour from 8:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. Catch a bus from Moraine Lake every hour on the hour between 9:00 A.M. and 5:00 P.M.

Banff: Family Friendly Horse-Drawn Sleigh Ride

5. Banff: Family Friendly Horse-Drawn Sleigh Ride

Start your tour in Banff, where you will meet a member of the riding office, who will check you in for your sleigh ride. Now it's time to climb into the sleigh and get cozy with your loved ones under a cozy wool blanket. Hear the tinkling of sleigh bells, as the horses lead you on a journey through Banff's mountain meadows. Along the way, listen to stories from your guide and soak in the spectacular views of the valley and surrounding mountains, while keeping your eyes peeled for local wildlife, such as elk and deer. Finish your memorable excursion with a fireside warm-up stop after the ride with a hot drink back at the stables.

From Banff: Lake Louise and Moraine Lake Sightseeing Tour

6. From Banff: Lake Louise and Moraine Lake Sightseeing Tour

Experience Banff’s famous lakes on a guided tour of Lake Louise and Moraine Lake.  Keep your eyes peeled for animals such as deer, elk, and bears on your way, and admire views of Castle Mountain before arriving at the first lake of the day. Hear stories about Banff National Park, its history, and the local animals from your guide. Enjoy a 30-minute visit to Lake Louise. Wander the famous shoreline and take photos of the lake against the backdrop of the mountains and Victoria Glacier.  Admire the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise Hotel from the outside or inside. Explore Moraine Lake, set in the rugged Valley of the Ten Peaks with waterfalls and rock piles. Enjoy a short guided walk to the famous Valley of the Ten Peaks viewpoint, or relax and take in the lake from the shoreline. Enjoy hot chocolate and maple cookies at one of the scenic stops. After a 30-minute break at the viewpoint, return back to Banff and drop you off at your hotel.

Jasper: Columbia Icefield Skywalk and Ice Explorer Ticket

7. Jasper: Columbia Icefield Skywalk and Ice Explorer Ticket

Enjoy an adventure at the Columbia Icefield Discovery Center. Get a guided tour around the Athabasca Glacier on Ice Explorer, admire the stunning mountains and glaciers and listen as your guide informs you of all the facts and history. Meet your guide, who will take you to the Athabasca Glacier. At the scheduled time, board your Ice Explorer, a massive vehicle designed explicitly for glacial travel, and set off on an exciting ride. During your ride, hear stories and facts about the Columbia Icefield and the glaciers around you. Once on the Glacier, hop off the vehicle to walk on the thick, 25,000-year-old ice and drink cold, pure water from the glacier itself. This is an experience you will never forget. Then, take a short ride to the Columbia Icefield Skywalk. Heighten your senses by walking on a platform where only glass separates you from a 918-foot (279-meter) drop. Marvel at the spectacular views of the mountains, glaciers, and the Sunwapta River with its waterfalls.

Jasper National Park Winter Wildlife Discovery Tour

8. Jasper National Park Winter Wildlife Discovery Tour

Greet your local guide at your accommodation, step on board your comfortable sightseeing vehicle and embark on a wonderful winter journey through some of the most breathtaking mountain scenery in Western Canada. Your knowledgeable guides are trained to seek out all of the Parks most iconic creatures. Big or small, elk, deer, sheep, goats, coyotes, wolves, and moose are just a sample of Jasper’s wild mountain fauna. Learn all about the ways these animals contribute to the rich diversity of the National Park and how they survive the mountain winters. Well versed in the history, geology, and ecology of the area your guides are happy to answer any and all questions. With small group sizes guaranteed, no question or request will go unanswered. Have your camera ready, as you travel through the Athabasca Valley. Make stops at various locations to document the stunning winter vistas. Spare yourself the stress of driving Winter roads and join a friendly local guide on this informative and relaxing morning tour.

Banff: Morning or Afternoon Johnston Canyon Icewalk

9. Banff: Morning or Afternoon Johnston Canyon Icewalk

Start with pickup from Banff and travel in a modern minibus along the Bow Valley Parkway to the Canyon. On arrival at the Johnston Canyon trailhead, your guide will show you how to put on ice cleats over your winter boots, as well as give you some tips on winter hiking. From here, start the moderate 2.7 kilometer hike with 135 meter elevation to the Upper Falls. Walk along the steel catwalks built into the canyon walls which allows a spectacular view down the canyon walls to the ice and river below. Along the way you'll learn the clues to how Johnston Canyon was formed and stop at the Lower Falls, where you'll have the option to walk through a natural cave feature for a unique view. At the Upper Falls, enjoy a brief stop on the upper deck with a small refreshment break to enjoy the views. These gigantic pillars of ice are the tour highlight and ice climbers can often be seen scaling the frozen columns. Once you've finished your hot chocolate, hike back down and your guide will transport you back to Banff and drop you at your hotel.

Banff: Afternoon Kananaskis River Whitewater Rafting Tour

10. Banff: Afternoon Kananaskis River Whitewater Rafting Tour

Enjoy whitewater rafting down an idyllic stretch of the Kanaskasis River, the perfect excursion for families, groups, and newcomers to whitewater rafting. Explore the pristine waterways of the Kananaskis River. Scout for local wildlife and enjoy the unrivaled beauty of the Canadian wilderness. Meet at the Nakoda Lakeside Lodge on Highway 1A. Start your rafting adventure with a 45-minute drive from Banff or Calgary. Enjoy the short scenic ride as you wind through the Canadian countryside. Once you're fitted with your wetsuits and other safety equipment, ride in a comfortable bus a short distance to the starting point on the Kananaskis River. Here, your guides will provide safety instructions and teach your paddle techniques. Feel equipped and ready to go as you prepare for the river. Board your raft and begin your journey. Admire the views during calm parts of the river. Practice different paddling techniques with your guide. Spot local wildlife such as soaring eagles, and deer who stroll along the banks of the river. Then, get ready to be splashed as your raft through class 2-3 rapids as you travel along a lovely forested area of the river. At the end of the journey enjoy a scenic float to the finish where you can swim and splash in the water. Return to the river base for high fives and snacks to celebrate your rafting adventure. This tour operates from mid-May to mid-September and is ideal for anyone that has never rafted before or does not know how to swim.

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What people are saying about Alberta, Canada

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 145 reviews

Perfect way to experience Johnston Canyon in winter. Ice cleats made the walking easy. Neal was engaging and provided lots of useful information that enhanced the experience. The canyon itself is stunning in winter! Loved the maple cookies!

Our daughter cried the last 20 min of the trip. Our guide Brooklyn was amazing! She was full of info about the area! We have to apologize but thank the team for the ride! We will be back again one day!

Incredible walk at night through a snowy, gorgeous canyon outside of the town of Banff. We learned a lot about the local area thanks to our guide Chris. Such a fun evening!

I would certainly recommend doing this at least once. Everything is provided from transport to supplies making it so easy.

The view is breathtaking. Make sure to go up the stairs to the top, you won’t regret it!