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Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

Houston, Texas
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23 posts
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Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

We are planning to fly into Calgary and want to visit Banff, Lake Louise and Jasper.

We arrive on a Sunday around 1pm, and leave Friday morning.

Where would you stay and how many nights?

We want to stay at the Fairmont on Lake Louise at least 2 nights. Would you stay in Banff? Jasper?

Suggestions?

Many thanks.

Blind Bay, BC
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1. Re: Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

Start with the top questions about Banff specifically the 6th question.. As we have no idea what your ages, interests, budgets etc are it's hard to come up with suggestions.

tripadvisor.com/Travel-g154910-c14636/Banff-…

Come back with your interests etc then we can help you fine tune your trip.

Personally I would do Banff & Lake Louise given you time frame & save Jasper for another trip.

Banff, Canada
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for Banff, Lake Louise
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2. Re: Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

Within 5 days in Banff here is what you can do:

Day 1 - Banff.

It takes a day to visit Banff. Enjoy the town, visit the landmarks of Bow Falls and the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel. Take a stroll. Enjoy the shops of Banff Avenue. Must Do: The Banff Gondola. Budget 2.5 hours to enjoy the Gondola.

Day 2 - Banff area.

It's easy to take a day to enjoy the surrounding scenery around Banff. A half day to enjoy Lake Minnewanka and Lake Minnewanka Road and a half day to enjoy Johnston Canyon are just a few possibilities. Also possible - a Nature Float on the Bow River, a Voyageur Canoe trip or the boat cruise on Lake Minnewanka. Enjoy short drives to Mount Norquay, Vermillion Lakes, Surprise Corner and the Hoodoos.

Day 3 - Lake Louise and Yoho

It's hard to do Lake Louise and Yoho in a day, but you can have fun trying. Many visitors will take 1 day just to enjoy Lake Louise and to go for a hike. But, you will also want to visit Moraine Lake (in the Lake Louise area) and the nearby Takakkaw Falls and Emerald Lake. Try and squeeze it all in.

Day 4 - roadtrip and sightseeing on the amazing Icefields Parkway

On this day, you enjoy a drive further afield on the Icefields Parkway. Pack a picnic, start early and make sure to stop at Bow Lake and Peyto Lake. Num-Ti-Jah Lodge on the shoreline of Bow Lake is a great lunch stop or coffee stop. There are inumerable viewpoints along the way as you make the slow and enjoyable drive to the Columbia Icefields Centre. At the Centre, take the tour and go for a short walk. The tour is designed as a "drop-in" tour and is a must-do. The Toe of the Glacier hike is short, sweet and free.

Day 5 - Enjoy your choice of activities (hike, white water rafting, canoeing?) It takes time to enjoy this amazing place and it takes time to enjoy a trip, a hike or an excursion. You'll want and need a day to do your choice of fun things. OR - want a day off to just enjoy? Pack a picnic and head out to Johnson Lake, Two Jack Lake or drive to Storm Mountain Lodge.

Houston, Texas
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13 reviews
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3. Re: Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

So if we are focusing on Banff and Lake Louise areas, would Lake Louise be a good mid ground post from which to make excursions? The Fairmont looks beautiful!

Calgary, Canada
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for Calgary
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4. Re: Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

Using Lake Louise as a base has its pros and cons. This TripAdvisor Traveller Article lays them out so that you can decide if it's a good fit for you:

tripadvisor.com/Travel-g154910-c14815/Banff-…

Traveller Articles are written by TA members like you and me, in response to popular forum questions.

Vancouver, Canada
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60 reviews
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5. Re: Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

Depending on how much driving you like to do, I might look at spending your first night Lake Louise, your second and third nights in Jasper, and then return to Banff for the last two nights. Everyone is different, but personally, I think I would tire of the very small village and lack of services in LL after one night. One night gives you the experience and the views...you can check it off the list, and then move on to the rest of the spectacular scenery and experiences.

With 5 days, I think you have time to do what I feel is the best part, which is the drive up the Icefields Parkway between Banff and Jasper. Other advice is also good, so its just a case of sorting out what is important to you.

Calgary, Canada
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6. Re: Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

I'm with Vancouverite with maybe one difference to consider - miss out Jasper and daytrip up the parkway and back from Louise thus avoiding one pack / unpack ?

Rob

6 posts
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7. Re: Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

Hope you have fun in banff does any body know what cell service works well in banff and area around thanks

6 posts
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8. Re: Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

Hope you have fun in banff does any body know what cell service works well in banff and area around thanks

Jasper, Canada
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for Jasper, Jasper National Park, Canadian Rockies
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9. Re: Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

There is cell service in Banff and Lake Louise, but once you head north on the Icefields Parkway and get out of range of the towers in those areas, there will be no reception. As you head north to Jasper, there is reception again near Athabasca Falls, about 30 km south of Jasper townsite. So there is 150+ km with no service.

The major providers here are Telus and Rogers.

Chicago, Illinois
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10. Re: Maximize a 5 day stay in Canadian Rockies in August

krp329, thanks for the cell service info re Banff up to Jasper. I've read elsewhere cell service is spotty in the Canadian Rockies except for the larger towns. What about cell service around Yoho NP? And Banff to Calgary? We're doing something similar to Lornadoone but coming from the other direction (Edmonton to Calgary).