Banff
Outdoor Sports

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Our most recommended Banff Outdoor Sports

Banff: Afternoon Kananaskis River Whitewater Rafting Tour

1. 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.

Banff: Mount Norquay 2.5 or 4-Hour Guided Via Ferrata Climb

2. Banff: Mount Norquay 2.5 or 4-Hour Guided Via Ferrata Climb

Join this fun alpine climbing tour that's perfect for all abilities, including those with no previous experience. Experience the thrill of climbing a via ferrata with an expert guide and delight in bird’s-eye views of Banff National Park.  Choose between a 2.5-hour Explorer Route or a 4-hour Ridgewalker Route. Upon arrival to Mount Norquay, located just 10 minutes from Banff, check in and meet your guide. Get equipped with a harness, lanyards, and helmet, then ride the sightseeing chairlift to where your adventure begins.  After an equipment check and training is complete, take a short 5-minute walk to your first via ferrata buttress to climb. The 2.5-hour Explorer Route is a great choice for those who are slightly limited on time or looking for an introduction to via ferrata. Spend some time with your guide and get introduced to the equipment before heading up a few pitches and crossing the suspension bridge.  You will reach 2,235 meters (7,332 feet) above sea level. The tour lasts 2-2.5 hours, covers 1 kilometer (3,280 feet), and involves an elevation gain of 145 meters (475 feet). Select the 4-hour Ridgewalker Route to get a greater feel for heights and experience the via ferrata in full.  Get comfortable with the equipment on a practice wall, then continue on the Norquay cliffs, climbing the memorial, sunrise and vista buttresses — and, of course, traversing the suspension bridge. The route heads up to the Ridgewalker Summit, 2,300 meters (7,545 feet) above sea level. At the top, enjoy incredible views and snap some photos before descending back to the starting point.  The tour lasts 3.5-4 hours, covers 1.4 kilometers (4,593 feet), and involves an elevation gain of 260 meters (853 feet).

Banff National Park: 1-Hour Spray River Horseback Ride

3. Banff National Park: 1-Hour Spray River Horseback Ride

Embark on a horseback riding adventure as you breathe in the pine-spiced mountain air. Approach the Bow Falls and enjoy spectacular views. Pass by the famous Fairmont Banff Springs Golf Course known as one of the most immaculately manicured courses in Canada. Continue along the edge of the Fairmont Banff Springs Golf Course and cross through the waters once more. A partial climb up Sulphur Mountain brings you through a wooded residential area and back to the corrals. Enjoy a unique experience and cross the Spray River. On hotter days, your horse may even decide to cool itself off by splashing water onto its belly. Have an experience unlike anything else.

Kicking Horse River: Whitewater Rafting Half-Day Trip

4. Kicking Horse River: Whitewater Rafting Half-Day Trip

Enjoy an exhilarating whitewater rafting tour on the Kicking Horse River as you brave Class 2 to Class 4/4+ waters with a guide. Take on rapids such as Hopi's Hole, Cable Car, Table Saw, and the famous Portage and Shotgun. Your experience begins at the local partner's day lodge, conveniently located on the TransCanada Highway. After a warm welcome, your crew distributes top-of-the-line rafting gear (wetsuit, wetsuit booties and gloves, spray jackets, life jackets, and helmets). In the comfort of heated change rooms, change into the provided gear before taking a quick shuttle to the "put-in" (starting point), where you receive your extensive safety briefing before jumping in the river. This is the biggest whitewater river in the Rockies. Prepare to hold on and get wet. Enjoy the canyon environment and possibly get a glimpse of a mountain goat, wolf, or bear. Following your trip, another quick shuttle returns you back to the warmth of the base. Once changed back into dry and comfortable land clothes, enjoy snacks and a selection of hot and cold beverages. Stop by the gift shop for a souvenir or photo of the trip to take back home.

Banff National Park: Hop-On-Hop-Off Bus Day-Pass

5. Banff National Park: Hop-On-Hop-Off Bus Day-Pass

Maximize your time in Banff National Park with this Hop-On-Hop-Off Pass and see all the main sights at your own pace. The stops include Johnston Canyon, Moraine Lake, Lake Louise, and the Lake Louise Gondola (admission is not included). There are 3 departures from Banff, so you can start early and see everything, or sleep in and enjoy a tour along the famous Bow Valley Parkway to Moraine Lake before your return to Banff. • Stop 1 - Banff - The tour departs at 07:45 AM, 9:30 AM, and 12:15 PM daily • Stop 2 - Johnston Canyon - Hop off here to hike up to the beautiful Upper and Lower Falls or even go all the way up to the famous Ink Pots • Stop 3 - Lake Louise Gondola - Soar by gondola or chairlift to the most stunning views on the Lake Louise Gondola • Stop 4 & Stop 5 - Lake Louise - Make sure to hop-off here to enjoy Lake Louise and all that it has to offer. Check out Lake Agnes Teahouse and the breathtaking Plain of Six Glaciers • Stop 6 - Moraine Lake - the most stunning lake in the Rockies. Experience the absolutely breathtaking Valley of the Ten Peaks that surround the lake. Return to Banff as early as 1:45 PM or enjoy all the stops and come back to the town at 6 PM. On your way back to Banff open the windows and watch for wildlife along the famous Bow Valley Parkway. Grizzly bears, black bears, elk, bighorn sheep have all been spotted here. Your bus will stop for photos at any sighting. Enjoy your tour on the original yellow school bus style with a professional driver and a tour guide. All the buses all guaranteed to be 5 years old or newer. Guides on board each bus will help you plan your day on a 1 on 1 basis and give you a personalized itinerary that matches what you want to do. They also have extensive knowledge of nearly everything you would ever want to know about Banff and can help you with hiking suggestions, or even just great places to eat.

Banff: Morning Whitewater Rafting Tour in Horseshoe Canyon

6. Banff: Morning Whitewater Rafting Tour in Horseshoe Canyon

Embark on an exciting rafting trip through class 3-4 rapids and with big waves meaning you will get soaked and have lots of fun. Along the way, keep your eyes peeled for local wildlife sightings and enjoy the stunning outdoor beauty of the Horseshoe Canyon section of the Bow River. Start your rafting adventure with an optional pick-up in Banff or Canmore and enjoy the short scenic ride as it winds its way through the Canadian countryside. Once you're fitted with your wetsuits and other safety equipment, be transported in a comfortable bus a short distance to the starting point on the Bow River. Here, your guides will go through safety instructions and paddle techniques ready for your time on the river. Then it's time to jump aboard to start your journey. Admire the views during calm parts of the river and learn from your guide as they lead the group through different paddling techniques. Make sure to watch for the area’s local wildlife, including eagles soaring above and deer strolling along the river banks. Then, the river comes to life, kicking up a series of frothy rapids that will get your heart pumping. Hang tight and listen for your guide's instructions as he helps you navigate the whitewater through the shale cliffs. At the midway point, stop for an optional cliff jump into the glacier-fed waters of the Bow River. Depending on your adventure level you can choose from a medium or a big cliff jump, or simply enjoy watching the others take the plunge. After the thrill of cliff jumping, continue rafting until you reach the endpoint. Return to the river base for high fives, snacks, and optional return transport. This tour operates from mid May to early September, with transport available from late May onwards on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

Banff: 4-Hour E-Bike and Walking Tour in Johnston Canyon

7. Banff: 4-Hour E-Bike and Walking Tour in Johnston Canyon

See the best of Johnston Canyon and Bow Valley Parkway by combining cycling and hiking on this 4-hour guided tour. Ride with your guide through Vermilion Lakes, then make your way up the Legacy Trail. Ride along Bow Valley Parkway and ditch your e-bikes for your hiking boots as you hike up Johnston Canyon. Enjoy spectacular views of the Lower Falls Bridge and see wildlife along the way, including deer, elk, and bears. Enjoy your return shuttle back to Banff. Relax and admire the views on your way after a total of 26 kilometers of cycling and 3 kilometers of walking.

Canadian Rockies: Helicopter Flight with Exploration Hike

8. Canadian Rockies: Helicopter Flight with Exploration Hike

Get ready for an awe-inspiring experience of the Rocky Mountain with this scenic helicopter flight and hiking tour. See the Rockies from a bird's-eye view. Admire the stunning views of the mountains, lakes, and glaciers from above. Then explore the region’s natural beauty on foot. Choose from a 20, 30, or 55-minute scenic flight. Each option includes incredible panoramas of waterfalls, emerald-green lakes, and mountain ridges. With the 55-minute flight, approach the Columbia Icefield, the largest expanse of ice in the Rocky Mountains. After the flight, land at the confluence of the Cline River and Waterfalls Creek. Continue to explore the wild beauty of this region on foot, hiking to the Twin Falls waterfall. Then climb back on board the helicopter and fly back to the heliport, enjoying the fantastic views of Abraham Lake.

Banff National Park: 2-Hour Sundance Loop Horseback Ride

9. Banff National Park: 2-Hour Sundance Loop Horseback Ride

Explore stunning sections of wilderness on this two-hour trip and spot wildlife that you might not get to see on foot. Learn a few cowboy tricks along the way from your experienced guide.  Pass by natural sulphur hot springs as you make your way to one of Banff’s national historic sites, the Cave and Basin. Trek along the tranquil Bow River and take in magnificent views of the Bow Valley before pressing through thick marshes as you climb Sulphur Mountain. Continue up to Windy Knoll where you can take striking photos of the sweeping landscape

Banff National Park: Guided Signature Hikes with Lunch

10. Banff National Park: Guided Signature Hikes with Lunch

After being picked up you up from your Banff hotel in a modern minibus by your friendly guide, get ready for a day of exploring the backcountry of Banff National Park on foot. Your guide will give you an introduction to Banff National Park and today's hike as you head towards the trailhead. Choose between 4 hiking routes representing the best trails in Banff: Sundays & Thursdays - Hike to Stanley Glacier; Mondays & Saturdays - Hike to Larch Valley; Tuesdays - Hike to Consolation Lakes; Wednesdays & Fridays - Hike to the Plain of Six Glaciers. Hike to Stanley Glacier Journey through a land sculpted by fire and ice in Kootenay National Park. The trail switchbacks moderately for the first half of the hike, through regrowth from the most recent fire, allowing for unparalleled views down over Vermillion Pass back to Castle Mountain. Follow the trail between sheer towering walls of Mount Stanley and Storm Mountain until you leave the forest behind to emerge in a land of ice and rock where you may even find some fossils. Be treated to views of Stanley Glacier creeping down the side of Mt. Stanley towards the valley bottom. Rated: Moderate; Hiking time: 3-4 hours; Return distance: 8.4kms (5.25 miles); elevation gain: 395m (1,285 ft). Hike to Larch Valley Trail restrictions due to bear activity make this an ideal hike to take with a guided group. Beginning from the Valley of the Ten Peaks at Moraine Lake, the trail climbs, really climbs, up 10 switchbacks to Larch Valley on a well-maintained trail. After reaching the Valley, the trail easily ambles through a larch forest and then begins to gain elevation again towards Sentinal Pass and the Minestimma Lakes. Towards the Pass, views of the Ten Peaks, Moraine Lake and gigantic Mt. Temple (3,543 m/11,625 ft) will complete your experience. Please note that this hike does not continue to the top of Sentinel Pass. Rated: Moderate; hiking time: 4-5 hours; distance: 9.0kms (5.6 miles); elevation gain: 535m (1,500 ft). Hike to Consolation Lakes This trail begins in the Valley of the Ten Peaks at stunning Moraine Lake. The drive alone to this location is worth it in itself. We’ll spend our time hiking leisurely to Consolation Lakes, and upon our return explore around Moraine Lake, including a trip to the top of the Rockpile. Due to bear restrictions, this is a great trip to do in a guided group. Rated: Easy; Hiking Time: 3-4 hours; return distance: 5.8kms (3.6 miles); elevation gain: 255m (837 ft). Hike to the Plain of Six Glaciers Your hike starts by the Lake Louise shoreline to the back of the lake before ascending up an ancient glacial valley. As you get higher, the colour of the lake becomes even more stunning and the crowds begin to disappear. Just past the Plain of Six Glaciers Teahouse you will be treated to views of the six glaciers feeding into the valley and Lake Louise, with cakes and tea served at the teahouse (optional). Rated: moderate; hiking time: 5 hours; distance: 10.6kms (6.6 miles); elevation Gain: 340m (1,100 feet)

Other Sightseeing Options in Banff

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What people are saying about Banff

The guides were very knowledgeable and professional- there is only so much they can control. At the end of the day this is a risky activity as noted in the waivers and you are riding a LIVE animal. Horses were well trained and good tempered. Views were breathtaking. Highly recommended, but you would feel more comfortable having some experience with horses prior to this activity

Well worth the money. Brent was a awesome tour guide and it was an epic experience. Definitely recommend doing it while in Calgary/Banff area, and recommend doing the Abseil.

Very good experience, nice guide, clear instructions and the entire trip was really fun!

Stunning views!! One of my favorite things to do in Banff.

Thank you Jacob! Such a nice night walk, we loved it!