Friday, March 31, 2023

How To Plan A Journey to Banff in Winter – A 6 Day Itinerary

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The splendour of Banff Nationwide Park is plain all 12 months spherical, however there’s one thing magical about coming right here when it is remodeled right into a winter wonderland. Not solely is there the chance to ski and snowboard a number of the greatest powder on earth, you may additionally see larger-than-life snow sculptures, be capable to watch a ridiculous sport known as skijoring, and your style buds can be delighted past measure.

The legendary Banff and Lake Louise and SnowDays awaits. With this 6 day itinerary, you may see how one can plan an adventure-filled journey that covers the perfect of Banff in winter.

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Banff in Winter 6 Day Itinerary

Winter is a magical time to go to Banff and Lake Louise in Alberta. Nestled within the Canadian Rocky Mountains and Banff Nationwide Park, it is a uncommon excellent mixture of majestic mountain peaks, world-class ski resorts, unbounded journey alternatives, culinary delights, and a vibrant city that is aware of how one can have a good time the snowy season.

Opposite to common perception, winter is without doubt one of the quietest instances of the 12 months to go to, making it low key, the perfect time to come back to Banff. You will really feel like you’ve the mountains all to yourselves, the streets are by no means packed, and there is child-like surprise that oozes all through.

Just like our different journey itineraries akin to 10 days in Patagonia, 5 day Maui itinerary, Richmond BC 4 day itinerary, we’ll leap straight into how one can plan your individual car-less 6 day Banff in winter itinerary.

Be sure that to additionally go to Banff and Lake Louise’s journey planner software, a helpful software that has journey concepts and produces a full-blown itinerary that may be shared and considered on-line.

Why Go to Throughout SnowDays

banff in winter snowdays live music and entertainment on bear street

Palms down, the perfect instances to go to Banff within the winter is through the SnowDays pageant.

SnowDays is an annual pageant in January that celebrates all issues winter.

It is a fully free occasion that shines a lightweight on what makes winter a lot enjoyable. Along with the ambiance of string lights and twinkly snowflakes, you may discover these scattered all through Banff and Lake Louise:

SnowDays is the last word après, it doesn’t matter what form of adventures you are as much as through the day or all through the week, and made for everybody together with youngsters, or the child inside.

The precise dates for SnowDays adjustments 12 months to 12 months nevertheless it’s normally on the third week of January and runs for 12 days.

Day 1 – Discovering SnowDays

snowdays snow sculpture during winter

Welcome to Banff within the winter! Whereas there can be a little bit of journey time to consider, you’ll little doubt have the identical kind of response we had after we first arrived – “wow!”. While you’re on Banff Avenue, lined with historic structure and the towering Cascade Mountain, it is arduous to not cease and stare.

TIP: Be sure to seize your Nationwide Park Go earlier than you permit the home so you do not have the trouble of needing to go to the Banff Customer Centre or on the park entrance gates. As every part you are visiting on this itinerary is inside Banff Nationwide Park, you will want to buy a Nationwide Park Go during your journey.

Most travellers arriving can be flying into Calgary Worldwide Airport (YYC). Since you are still 2 hours away from Banff, catch a experience with Banff Airporter, a shuttle service that’ll take you straight to your lodge.

We opted to not get a automobile rental for this itinerary due to how there was a transportation resolution for each phase of the journey. It is a cheaper solution to go and extra importantly, it is a extra sustainable solution to journey, and higher for the setting.


banff airporter bus interior
Inside their luxurious bus
banff airporter drop off at mount royal hotel
Drop off at your lodge on the town
banff airporter under seat usb outlet
Under the seat
banff airporter side outlets
Window seat aspect
banff airporter check in desk at calgary airport
Banff Airporter check-in desk at Calgary Airport

Stops: Calgary Airport (YYC), Canmore, and Banff

Value: These are topic to gasoline surcharge (3.5%) and gross sales tax (5% on price and gasoline surcharge)

One-Method Return
Grownup (18-64) $77.99 $155.98
Senior (65+) $70.19 $150.38
Little one (6-17) $38.99 $77.99
Little one below 5 Free Free

Hours: Departures can be found between these hours.

  • Calgary to Banff – 10AM – 10:30PM
  • Banff to Calgary – 5AM – 7:30PM

Web site: Banff Airporter

Bus facilities:

  • 24 seats.
  • Seats have a pouch in entrance of every seat.
  • Pull down foot relaxation.
  • Leather-based seats with adjustable headrest.
  • Above the seat are adjustable vents and overhead studying lights.
  • Overhead storage for small luggage akin to small duffels and backpacks. This space won’t match a suitcase.


  • How lengthy does it take? The airport shuttle takes 1 hour and 45 minutes to get to Banff.
  • What in case your flight is delayed? They will change your reserving, freed from cost.
  • Can Banff Airporter drop off at a house handle? Sure, if you happen to’re staying with household/good friend or renting a VRBO property, they may drop you off on the specified handle.
  • Does the shuttle go to Lake Louise? No, it doesn’t.
  • Can you employ the shuttle with no reservation? Sure, you may be placed on standby and if there are seats obtainable, you’ll get on.
  • Are pets allowed on the shuttle? No, apart from service animals.


  • Reservations are extremely beneficial.
  • On the airport, it is necessary to check-in on the desk previous to departure. They tag your luggage and write down which lodge you are staying at.
  • The check-in counter is on the arrivals stage between exit doorways 5 and 6. Calgary Airport is one linked terminal however there could also be a little bit of stroll. Banff Airporter has nice movies that present you how one can get there.
  • Bus doesn’t have a toilet.
  • When going from Banff to Calgary Airport, in addition they choose up instantly out of your lodge.
  • The again row of their largest bus doesn’t recline.

After settling in, make your means over to the SkiBig3 Journey Hub on Banff Avenue, mere steps away from Mount Royal Lodge. That is the place you may be selecting up your ski or snowboard rental for those who did not carry their very own.

Having a handy rental store on the town, with gear fitted to all talent ranges, implies that you needn’t lug your gear from residence. Merely drop by, get fitted, they usually’ll even drop it off at your lodge if you’d like.

You will additionally be capable to choose up your SkiBig3 Carry Tickets the place one ticket will get you entry to all three mountains – Lake Louise Ski Resort, Mount Norquay, and Banff Sunshine.


skibig3 adventure hub snowboard rental pick up

Deal with: 114 Banff Ave, Banff, AB T1L 1J4

Hours: 8AM – 9PM

Web site: SkiBig3 Journey Hub


  • Do any of the helmets have GoPro mounts? Sure, some mounts have mounts so that you simply must ask. They’re additionally okay with folks including mounts.
  • Is injury safety insurance coverage value it? Harm safety consists of superficial injury, core photographs, and primarily something that may be repaired. You by no means know what would possibly occur on the slopes so it is value having.
  • Are carry tickets refundable? If you happen to purchase a SkiBig3 Carry Ticket, they’re totally refundable till 14 days previous to arrival.
  • Can leases be delivered to the lodge with out becoming? No, becoming have to be performed on the SkiBig3 Journey Hub.
  • How does rental supply work? If you happen to get fitted no less than 1 hour earlier than the SkiBig3 Journey Hub closes the day earlier than your rental begins, they’ll ship it to any lodge in Banff. That mentioned, since Mount Royal Lodge is steps away from the store, that’s the solely lodge that’s excepted from this program.


  • For this specific itinerary, you may want a 2 day SkiBig3 Carry Ticket. Day 3 would require a separate tubing ticket at Mount Norquay.
  • Rental reservations are beneficial. This additionally provides you 15% financial savings in comparison with in-store (minimal 3-day superior reservation).
  • They don’t lease goggles so you may want to purchase one or carry your individual from residence.
  • Jacket and pant leases can be found.
  • The busiest time of the day is between 3-6PM so if you happen to’re seeking to get fitted, attempt to present up earlier than or after.
  • Obtain the SkiBig3 App in your smartphone. Along with with the ability to reserve your leases and purchase your SkiBig3 Carry Tickets forward of time, search for their “PROMO/COUPON” part the place you’ll find offers on merchandise in-store and reductions to different companies on the town.
  • The benefit of SkiBig3 Carry Tickets are that they provide the flexibility, saves you time, and provides you entry to the ski shuttle. You are not locked into any particular mountains, every ticket provides you 2-2 further days (known as grace days) so you do not have to ski/snowboard on steady days.
  • The SkiBig3 Carry Ticket additionally provides you entry to tubing without spending a dime if you happen to scanned into the mountain that very same day for snowboarding or snowboarding.
  • If you happen to’re not renting gear however you have bought a SkiBig3 Carry Ticket, you’ll be able to really get them to supply the tickets to your lodge so you do not have to go to the Ski Big3 Journey Hub.
  • If you happen to do not need to return your rental by hand, you’ll be able to request a choose up out of your Banff lodge.
  • The Ikon Go and Mountain Collective work at SkiBig3 mountains.

After you are performed your becoming, you may carry your gear again to the lodge or you’ll be able to have it delivered by SkiBig3.

The afternoon is open so that you can discover Banff as you please. Get to know the city by exploring the principle road of Banff Avenue, and likewise the favored road that runs parallel to it, Bear Avenue.

Drop by outlets, boutiques, and benefit from the snow sculptures and the stay performances on Bear Avenue. Don’t fret about seeing every part as you may have loads of days to see all of them.

For dinner, the beginning of your culinary journey begins at Brazen which is conveniently positioned inside the lodge you are staying at. Impressed by the explorers and pioneers of Banff, they’re adorned in an elegant mid-century trendy fashion and ship on daring tastes with smoke, numerous smoke.

From trendy takes on basic cocktails akin to Smokin’ Warden and Whisky Creek, to the meat tartare, smoked sticky ribs, ginger beef and crème brûlée dishes, hearth and smoke are what actually units the meals aside of their creativity, presentation, and style.

Day 1 Abstract

What you may see:

What you may do:

The place you may eat:

  • Dinner – Brazen – Fascinating presentation brings their daring fashion to life of their meals and drinks at this must-try restaurant.

The place you may keep:

Day 2 – Lake Louise Ski Resort

lake louise ski resort snowboarding in yellow jacket

Your day 2 is like being shot out of a cannon as a result of this mountain that is a part of the SkiBig3 assortment of resorts is massive and epic. As you carve your means down, you may have an unbelievable cheek-to-cheek smile, that’ll be arduous to rub off.

On high of Mount Royal Lodge being centrally positioned, the parking zone behind can also be a choose up location for the SkiBig3 shuttles. After grabbing breakfast at Brazen or or one of many close by cafes on the town, seize your gear and hop on the bus heading as much as Lake Louise Ski Resort.

You will have an unbelievable cheek-to-cheek smile, that’ll be arduous to rub off.

With the rugged Rockies throughout and looking out instantly on the legendary Lake Louise and Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise throughout the valley, you’ll be able to’t assist however pinch your self and ask “how is that this potential?”.

Overlaying 4 mountain faces (entrance, larch, west bowl, and again bowls), there is a ridiculous wealth of terrain to discover right here whether or not you are a newbie or superior. From free-ride runs, forests to soar by means of, difficult steeps, open bowls, and extra, there is not any scarcity of exhilaration.

While you’re prepared for a break, there are many meals choices on the the bottom and on-mountain. For one thing distinctive for a ski resort, take a look at Kuma Yama which interprets to ‘Bear on the Mountain’ in Japanese. They provide a mixture of conventional and fusion sashimi, nigiri, rolls, ramen, and appetizers.

You will positively get your ski or snowboarding legs again after today and while you’re prepared, take the SkiBig3 shuttle again into Banff.


Deal with: 1 Whitehorn Rd, Lake Louise, AB T0L 1E0

Mountain stats: 11 lifts, 164 named runs, 4 mountain faces, 991 m (3250 ft) vertical rise, 2637 m (8650 ft) high elevation, longest run is 8 km (5 mi), and 4200 acres (1700 hectares) in space.

Terrain means ranges:

  • Newbie – 25%
  • Intermediate – 45%
  • Superior – 30%

Carry Hours: 9AM – 4PM each day

Tubing Hours: 10AM – 4PM each day

Passes: Full-day, half-day, and after 2PM tickets can be found. SkiBig3 Carry Tickets are additionally obtainable which provide you with entry to ski shuttles, multi-resort entry, lodge supply for leases, and reductions & perks.

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Web site: Lake Louise Ski Resort

Shuttle: Full shuttle schedule. This shuttle takes roughly 50 minutes. Shuttle is first-come-first-serve so it is beneficial to reach no less than 5 minutes earlier than departure.


  • Simply outdoors of Whiskey Jack Lodge are open metallic racks the place you’ll go away your luggage.
  • Proper off of the Glacier Specific carry is a pleasant viewing platform that is nice for pictures.
  • Lake Louise Ski Resort has a tube park so if in case you have a SkiBig3 Carry Ticket, and need to change issues up through the day, you’ll be able to go to without spending a dime.
  • Lake Louise Ski Resort is the farthest of the SkiBig3 resorts so simply bear in mind it takes near an hour to get there from Banff.

When you’re again on the town, drop off your gear at your lodge’s ski storage locker, and you’ll both hit the recent tub or proceed your exploration of the city of Banff.

As a part of SnowDays, keep in mind that there are snow sculptures scattered all through city, there’s Play Zone, and there is stay leisure.

Cozy across the hearth pits on Bear Avenue whereas listening to stay music after which head to dinner at Three Bears Brewery & Restaurant.

three bears brewery and restaurant banff with asian couple eating

You possibly can’t go incorrect with ordering their spicy shrimp bao buns, juicy smash burger, and elk and kale pizza, together with pints of their infusion beer and seasonal winter ale.

Together with good instances, go away right here with happy tummies.

Day 2 Abstract

What you may see:

What you may do:

The place you may eat:

  • Breakfast – Brazen – They provide a scrumptious brunch menu that has mixture of wholesome and indulgent objects. If you happen to’re a visitor of Mount Royal Lodge, the breakfast bundle is free if you happen to’re Pursuit Rewards members.
  • Lunch – Kuma Yama – Japanese restaurant on the base of Lake Louise Ski Resort that serves a superb mixture of sushi, ramen, and appetizers.
  • Dinner – Three Bears Brewery & Restaurant – Restobar with craft beer made in-house, famend ambiance, and nice eats on Bear Avenue.

The place you may keep:

Day 3 – Mount Norquay and Fats Bikes

snow tubing mount norquay banff in winter

Letting your legs take a break doesn’t suggest you’ll be able to’t nonetheless hit the slopes. On day 3 of your Banff in winter itinerary, not solely will you’ve the fun of your life snow tubing, you may additionally get to pedal by means of extra of the quintessential Canadian mountain city you have not seen but.

After breakfast, take the SkiBig3 shuttle to the resort that is closest to Banff – Mount Norquay. Whereas not the biggest, it is the one one that provides night time snowboarding, is extremely near city, and has the longest and quickest tube lanes in Alberta.

Located by a separate parking zone that is a bit of additional up from the bottom of Mount Norquay is a rollercoaster on snow that’ll have you ever screaming from the highest of your lungs.

Mount Norquay is a rollercoaster on snow.

Along with your tubing ticket available, you may be handed a crimson tube and take the magic carpet to the highest. From right here, you may have a selection of a number of lanes. You will quickly study that some are sooner than others, and there is one that really loops again round.

If you happen to’re together with your important different, household, or pals, you too can hyperlink up it other ways to amp up the thrill (or terror). Ask the snow tubing attendant for concepts, allow them to understand how a lot spin you want, and off you go.


mount norquay tube lodge ticket counter
Purchase your tubing tickets within the Tube Lodge

Deal with: 2 Mt Norquay Rd, Banff, AB T1L 1B4

Mountain stats: 6 lifts, 60 named runs, 503 m (1650 ft) vertical rise, 2133 m (6998 ft) high elevation, and longest run is 1167 m (3828 ft), and 190 acres (77 hectares) in space.

Terrain means ranges:

  • Newbie – 31%
  • Intermediate – 25%
  • Superior – 44%

Carry Hours: 9AM – 4PM and night time snowboarding 5PM – 9PM (Fri/Sat, January 6 – March 18, 2023)

Tubing Hours: Most recent hours are on their on-line reserving web page.

  • Morning: 10AM – 12:30PM (weekends, holidays and busier durations)
  • Afternoon: 1:30PM – 4PM
  • Night time: 5PM – 7:30PM (Friday, Friday & Saturday from January 7 – March 18, 2023 and on holidays)

Passes: Full-day, afternoon, final hour, and magic carpet tickets can be found. Tubing passes are additionally obtainable for particular classes (morning, afternoon, and night time). For the pliability of visiting a number of resorts, SkiBig3 Carry Tickets can be found which provide you with entry to all 3 together with ski shuttles, lodge supply for leases, and reductions & perks.

Web site: Mount Norquay

Shuttle: Full shuttle schedule. This shuttle takes roughly quarter-hour. Shuttle is first-come-first-serve so it is beneficial to reach no less than 5 minutes earlier than departure. Observe that the shuttle drops you off on the resort base so you may want o stroll up on the snow to get to the Tube Lodge.


  • If you happen to determine you need to ski or snowboard, you will get a 3 day SkiBig3 Carry Ticket as a substitute. Once more, observe that if you happen to use your ticket on today, you may get free entry to tubing.
  • You should buy tickets for the tubing park on the Tube Lodge
  • For the quickest lanes, make your solution to the far left of the tube lanes.
  • The tubing time slots are 2.5 hours which is sort of lengthy and most of the people do not final that lengthy. Because of this, there are lots much less folks close to the tip of the session than at first.
  • A helmet will not be vital for tubing however on windy and chilly days, ski goggles are a good suggestion.
bikescape fat biking experience in banff

After taking the shuttle again to city, seize a lunch at a spot like Wild Flour Bakery which serves bakery objects, soup and bread, and occasional.

Within the afternoon, you may go on an thrilling tour round Banff within the hottest experience on the town, both a fats bike or battery-powered e-fat bike, with locally-owned Bikescape.

With the assistance of the licensed information, you may discover ways to function your fats bike and earlier than you realize it, you may be driving to numerous viewpoints that you just doubtless have not been capable of make on foot.

A majority of the winter fats bike tour will take you across the Bow River Path however there’ll even be few different surprises alongside the way in which. There’ll even be loads of stops alongside the way in which for pictures.


Deal with: (Bear Avenue Outfitters is the assembly level for excursions) 203a Bear St, Banff, AB T1L 1E3

Hours: Excursions run Thursday – Sunday 1PM – 3PM (2 hour period)

Value: $139 + 5% GST per individual

Web site: Bikescape


  • Does Bikescape do customized non-public or group excursions? Sure, they do non-public excursions.
  • What tools is supplied for fats biking? Fats bike and helmet are supplied by Bikescape.
  • Will the fats bike slip on ice or snow? No, these are specialised fats bikes outfitted with studs.
  • Is fats biking expertise required? Past customary bicycle expertise, nothing else is required.
  • What’s the distinction between an e-fat bike and an everyday fats bike? An e-fat bike has a battery and motor to assists in pedalling, making it fairly easy to experience on quite a lot of terrain. An analog fats bike has the identical over-sized tires however all the pedalling is completed by the rider.


  • It will possibly get chilly within the winter so be sure you have a very good pair of trainers, gloves (ideally not mitts to have entry to fingers), ski goggles or sun shades, Buff, snow pants, and heat layers.
  • In case you have your individual ski helmet that you just choose to put on, you might be allowed to put on them for this tour.
  • Deliver a backpack with water, room for layers in case it will get too heat, and snacks.

Within the afternoon, you may have free time once more to make use of the Mount Royal Lodge rooftop scorching tubs, however one place we encourage you to take a look at throughout SnowDays is the Play Zone which is barely open from Wednesday – Sunday.

banff in winter snowdays play zone

Play Zone would possibly appear to be it is only for youngsters nevertheless it’s truthfully a enjoyable space to be a child. The actions obtainable change 12 months to 12 months however anticipate finding alternatives to slip down hills, heat up round hearth pits, strive your hand at curling, go fats biking as soon as extra, and see extra snow sculptures.

SnowDays Play Zone is truthfully a enjoyable space to be a child.


snowdays play zone tickets in hand

Deal with: 330 Banff Avenue, Banff Excessive College Subject

Hours: Wednesday – Friday 4PM – 8PM, Saturday – Sunday 12PM – 4PM throughout SnowDays

Value: Free

Web site: SnowDays Play Zone


  • A waiver is required when coming into the Play Zone. You possibly can fill it out on the welcome tent while you get there. Afterwards, you may obtain a Play Zone lift-style ticket.
  • Helmets are required for sliding hills for youths below 5. You possibly can carry your individual or you’ll be able to lease them without spending a dime on the fats biking tent.

You are in for a deal with this night with dinner at The Grizzly Home. It is not straightforward to discover a good fondue place in Canada, however in fact, there’s one proper within the warmth of Banff.

With their full fondue dinners, begin off with their basic French onion soup, adopted by a conventional Neuchâtel Swiss fondue with garlic and bread. For the principle, you may be cooking your choose of surf, turf, and unique meats on a scorching stone. To shut it off, you may be in heaven with bowls of fruit and wafer that may be dipped in a pot of silky easy Toblerone chocolate.

We would even be remiss to say that this was once a disco membership. Because of this every desk has a telephone the place you’ll be able to dial different tables. Let’s simply say that this will result in be a little bit of crank calling enjoyable.

Day 3 Abstract

What you may see:

What you may do:

The place you may eat:

  • Breakfast – Brazen – Numerous brunch objects to decide on right here and is conveniently linked to the lodge.
  • Lunch – Wild Flour Bakery – An artisan bakery cafe that is excellent for a fast seize and go.
  • Dinner – The Grizzly Home – An superior fondue restaurant that mixes a conventional Swiss cheese and chocolate fondue expertise with a scorching scorching rock to cook dinner your mains.

The place you may keep:

Day 4 – Banff Sunshine Slopes and Snowshoes

banff sunshine village resort

The Continental Divide is not a well known geographical time period for North People however there is a large ridge of elevated terrain that separates the drainage that largely follows the Rocky Mountains. Extra merely, if you happen to drop water on one aspect of the divide, it’s going to circulate to the Pacific Ocean, and if you happen to do it on the opposite aspect, it flows in the direction of the Atlantic Ocean.

Banff Sunshine of SkiBig3 is perched on the Continental Divide and can also be proper by the border with British Columbia as properly. In actual fact, some components of the resort do cross cross with BC. This places this resort in fairly the distinctive territory.

To begin day 4 of our Banff in winter itinerary, you may must seize early breakfast and catch one of many first SkiBig3 shuttles so you’ll be able to maximize your half-day on the slopes.

Out of all 3 mountains within the SkiBig3 portfolio, this one might need the nicest snow, as a result of it’s in actual fact, the best altitude ski resort in Canada. It additionally has the honour of being the one one which has a ski-in ski-out lodge, giving guests entry to three mountains; Goats Eye Mountain, The Eagles and Lookout Mountain.

Banff Sunshine (beforehand known as Sunshine Village) is very large and what you may bear in mind probably the most are its powdery mild snow and the expanse of ski and snowboard-able terrain. Personally, as snowboarders, we liked how a lot house there’s to carve.

It is best identified for its powdery mild snow and the expanse of ski and snowboard-able terrain.

To get to the Village, you need to take the gondola up from the Base. There is a halfway cease that provides you entry to the Goat’s Eye a part of the resort. Preserve going to go all the way in which as much as the Village. From right here, there are a selection of quads that can assist you discover the remainder of Banff Sunshine.

Since you may be doing snowshoeing after, drop your climbing boots within the locker at Centennial Lodge.

For lunch, return to Centennial Lodge within the Village for a power-up smoothie at Flamingo Smoothie Bar, and tacos from the Sixty 5 South meals truck outdoors.


Deal with: 1 Sunshine Entry Rd, Enchancment District No. 9, AB T1L 1J5

Mountain stats: 12 lifts, 137 named runs, 1070 m (3514 ft) vertical rise, 2730 m (8954 ft) high elevation, longest run is 8 km (5 mi), and 3358 acres (1359 hectares) in space.

Terrain means ranges:

  • Newbie – 20%
  • Intermediate – 25%
  • Superior – 44%
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Carry Hours:

  • Gondola – Sat – Thurs 8AM – 5:30PM, Fri 8AM – 10:30PM
  • Chairlift – 9AM – 4:30PM each day

Passes: Full-day and afternoon tickets can be found. If you happen to plan on visiting a number of resorts, SkiBig3 Carry Tickets can be found which provide you with entry to all 3 together with ski shuttles, lodge supply for leases, and reductions & perks.

Web site: Banff Sunshine

Shuttle: Full shuttle schedule. This shuttle takes roughly 25 minutes. Shuttle is first-come-first-serve so it is beneficial to reach no less than 5 minutes earlier than departure.


  • The gondola experience from Base to Village takes roughly 17 minutes.
  • As a substitute of taking the gondola again down on the finish of the day, you’ll be able to take the inexperienced run, Banff Ave., all the way in which right down to the Gondola Base.
  • If you happen to’re not an enormous terrain park rider however would like to have a bit of enjoyable with simpler jumps and rails, search for the Children Play Park close to the Jackrabbit Quad.
  • Banff Sunshine doesn’t have a tube park.
white mountain adventures snowshoe sunshine meadows winter excursion

Subsequent, become your boots, put something you do not want again into the locker, and meet your White Mountain Adventures information on the pre-coordinated location within the Village.

The Snowshoe Sunshine Meadows tour will take you trekking out to the backcountry the place a blanket of deep snow amongst phantom-like pines and unending mountains awaits.

Along with your skilled information, you may make tracks on contemporary snow in the direction of Rock Isle Lake, coming into into British Columbia’s Assiniboine Provincial Park earlier than looping again round to the Village. You will take the gondola again right down to the bottom of Banff Sunshine and White Mountain Adventures may have a van ready to take you again to your lodge.

Feeling a bit peckish? To not fear! In the course of the snowshoeing tour, your information will arrange a mini basecamp the place you’ll take a break with scorching candies and quite a lot of snacks.


Deal with: 202 Bear St, Banff, AB T1L 1E6 (workplace on the town of Banff)

Hours: Excursions run each day 12:15PM – 4:15PM (4 hour period)

Value: $125 + 5% GST per individual

Web site: White Mountain Adventures / Snowshoe Sunshine Meadows


  • Does White Mountain Adventures do customized non-public or group excursions? Sure, they do non-public excursions.
  • What tools is supplied for snowshoeing? Snowshoes are supplied by White Mountain Adventures.
  • Is snowshoeing expertise required? This tour is newbie pleasant and no expertise is required.


  • Do not forget that you want climbing boots for snowshoeing.
  • It is beneficial to have ski goggles if it is windy however on calm days, you do not want them.
  • Different beneficial clothes consists of winter coat and pants, heat hat, and heat gloves.
  • When reserving this tour, allow them to know that you’re going to meet them at Banff Sunshine as a substitute of being picked up on the town.
  • In case you are going from snowboarding or snowboarding at Banff Sunshine to snowshoeing, you may want a spot to retailer your gear. There are lockers within the basement of Mad Trappers the place you’ll be able to go away your boots. The price is 2 loonies. Your snowboard or skis might be left on the rack outdoors.
bluebird restaurant and lobby bar with prime rib and sides in front of fire place

For dinner, make your solution to Bluebird Restaurant & Foyer Bar. It is a restaurant that is gotten rave evaluations ever because it opened. In-built an almost 100-year-old constructing, it has been fully renovated with a 15-metre fire centrepiece, bringing in a basic class that mixes mountain chalet stylish with mid-century trendy class.

The guts of the kitchen is open for everybody to see with their woodfired fireside and that is the place in addition they put together their astonishingly juicy prime rib – a must-order. Sides like their extremely tacky mashed potatoes and maitake & oyster mushrooms are additionally important.

Their desserts should not be slept on both with our favourites being the genuine key lime pie and baked-to-order brown butter madeleines.

Day 4 Abstract

What you may do:

The place you may eat:

  • Breakfast – Seize early breakfast to go as Brazen will not be open early sufficient to catch one of many first shuttles to Banff Sunshine.
  • Lunch – Flamingo Smoothie Bar and Sixty 5 South taco truck – Discover hand-crafted smoothies and freshly made tacos by the Centennial Lodge.
  • Dinner – Bluebird Restaurant & Foyer Bar – Not solely are they one of many latest, it simply may be the perfect eating places on the town while you issue how critical they take their food and drinks, love letter to mid-century and mountain heritage design, and excellent service.

The place you may keep:

Day 5 – Skijoring and Banff Gondola

snowdays skijoring show banff in winter

You would say that your first 4 days in Banff are actually a build-up to this one. Skijoring is normally close to the tip of the SnowDays pageant and it’s a becoming finale that is full of spotlight reel stunts and a thrill for anybody that hasn’t seen this in-person earlier than. You will additionally cap off your final full day with probably the most scenic views on the high of Sulphur Mountain.

So what’s skijoring? It is a winter sport that is derived from Norwegian, which means “ski driving”. Originating as a means of travelling within the winter, it is now a showcase of talent, pace, and elegance, the place cowboys or cowgirls on horseback tow a skier or snowboard merely with an extended rope.

For in the future throughout SnowDays, Skijor Canada places on an excellent present, the place they present the complete vary of the game with champion equestrians partnered with snow riders, wowing the gang with a collection of jumps and unbelievable methods alongside Banff Avenue.


Deal with: Alongside Banff Avenue (particular location adjustments 12 months to 12 months)

Hours: A number of exhibits

  • In 2022 – 11AM and 3PM for 90 minutes

Value: Free

Web site: SnowDays Skijoring


  • Are there warming tents for skijoring? No, however for the reason that present is lined alongside Banff Avenue, you’ll be able to simply heat up in one of many companies (i.e. shops, eating places, and motels).


  • Earlier than the beginning of the primary present, they’re going to be doing follow runs and it is a nice likelihood to see them carry out with out the massive crowds.
  • Be ready to be standing outdoors for 90 minutes ore extra so gown warmly for the present.
  • For the reason that structure of the monitor is totally different yearly, it is arduous to pinpoint the perfect place to observe the present however we advocate you scout out the realm. Search for elevated views from stands, areas with unobstructed sight strains, and likewise being near the large jumps.
  • If you happen to’re staying on the Mount Royal Lodge, the rooftop scorching tub space has a superb vantage level.
  • In addition they stay stream the present at a number of restaurant venues. Prior to now, they’ve included Banff Avenue Brewing Co.Bear Avenue TavernCanadian Brewhouse , The Eddie BurgerExcessive RollersMelissa’s MisSteak , Park Distillery and Three Bears Brewery.

For lunch, if you happen to’re feeling one thing fast, the sandwich and occasional mixture at The Rebellion Bakery is a superb deal. For Banff’s greatest pizza and Italian, you’ll be able to’t go incorrect with LUPO on Wolf Avenue.

From city, you’ll be able to name a cab or take the ROAM Transit route 1 which is 10 minutes from downtown to Banff Gondola.

banff gondola tracks at sulphur mountain near upper terminal

Quintessential for any Banff in winter itinerary is a visit as much as Sulphur Mountain on the historic Banff Gondola. Early pioneers summited the mountain on snowshoes for meteorological functions however as tourism began to take maintain, the primary gondola was inbuilt 1959.

Right this moment, you’ll be able to take the 8-minute gondola experience that soars above treetops and supplies spectacular views of peaks and the city of Banff beneath. Arriving on the higher terminal, you may be greeted by state-of-the-art services that present guests with a number of statement decks and interactive experiences.

When you arrive on the summit, your breath can be taken away by the 360 diploma surroundings. Ranging from the primary stage, you’ll be able to stroll out to the viewing platforms proper outdoors or you may make the stroll alongside the boardwalk as much as Sanson’s Peak and the Sulphur Mountain Cosmic Ray Station.

Head as much as the Rooftop Statement Deck on the 4th ground for the perfect unobstructed views of the Canadian Rockies, and particularly, Spray Valley and Bow Valley. Right here, you may additionally discover Parks Canada’s iconic crimson chairs.


Deal with: 100 Mountain Ave, Banff, AB T1L 1B2

Gondola Hours:

  • January 9 – March 31, Sunday – Thursday 10AM – 9PM, Friday – Saturday 10AM – 10PM
  • April 1 – Could 5, 10AM – 9PM each day

Value: Banff Gondola costs fluctuate depend upon the day of the week and projected visitation numbers.

Web site: Banff Gondola / Nightrise


  • How do you get to the Banff Gondola with no automobile? You possibly can name a cab or you’ll be able to take the Bow Valley ROAM bus on Route 1 which stops alongside Banff Avenue and ends at Banff Gondola. The worth for a one-way experience is $2 for adults, and $1 for seniors 65+ and youth 13-18.
  • How many individuals match contained in the gondola? The cabin can match 4 passengers every.
  • Are gondola rides non-public? Sure, your group may have their very own non-public gondola and will not be shared with others.
  • Is Banff Gondola and summit accessible? Sure, the gondola automobiles and summit are totally accessible. The one exception is the summit boardwalk which incorporates shallow stairs.
  • Are canine allowed on the Banff Gondola? No apart from service canine.
  • Are strollers allowed? Because of restricted house on the gondola and on the summit, strollers aren’t beneficial however you’ll be able to carry ideally collapsible strollers up if you want to.


  • The two km stroll to Sanson’s Peak and the Sulphur Mountain Cosmic Ray Station will not be too difficult however account for the 25 minutes it takes to get there (50 minutes return plus viewing time).
  • Join Pursuit Rewards to avoid wasting as much as 20% for Banff Gondola. You possibly can join as a part of the take a look at course of.
  • Banff Gondola admission costs go up for instances at 6:10PM or later so select an earlier time to avoid wasting $2.
  • There’s a Sky Expertise Dinner bundle which incorporates the Banff Gondola, your selection of appetizer and entrée at Sky Bistro, and gratuities.
  • Reservations at Sky Bistro are extremely beneficial.
  • The taxi experience from downtown Banff to Banff Gondola is roughly $15-$20.
  • Interested in what the climate situations are like or need to scope out the view beforehand? Take a look at the Banff Gondola webcam.
  • Whereas you need to choose a time slot while you ebook your Banff Gondola ticket, they don’t seem to be too strict so it is okay if you happen to present up a tad early or late.
  • You possibly can take the gondola again down at any time.
sky bistro restaurant view at top of sulphur mountain

One of the best seats in the home although are at Sky Bistro. With their ground to ceiling home windows you may be handled to probably the most spectacular present because the solar slowly units and the skies burst into vivid colors.

Not only a fairly view, this restaurant is understood for his or her trendy tackle Canadian culinary traditions the place native components, consideration to element, presentation, and educated employees take centre stage.

For our meal, the seafood chowder, scallops and pork, braised lamb shank, and arctic char with BC prawns are glorious decisions.

The pictures from right here do not do the entire expertise justice so watch our video. Or higher but, simply go!

nightrise banff gondola experience cosmic rays

Because the alpenglow dissipates, Nightrise awakens on the summit, revealing a spectacle of soundscapes, dynamic lights, and a blizzard of emotion by means of their 4 Wonders.

Created in collaboration with the Stoney Nakoda Nations, they’ve performed an incredible job of bringing the music, spoken phrase, and tradition of the Indigenous peoples of this land by creating an ethereal place the place guests an join with winter, the encompassing landscapes, and its ancestors.

Lookup and take heed to the celebs

It is greater than only a mild projection present. You’re totally a part of the expertise, leaning into “sonic binoculars” to listen to the sounds of Indigenous peoples, interacting with waves of sunshine by strolling by means of them, and creating music of the mountain by leaping from pad to pad.

Take so long as you want at Nightrise earlier than taking the gondola again down, and both taxi or bus again to your lodge.


banff gondola nightrise floor plan
Nightrise structure taken from the primary stage
banff gondola sulphur mountain summit temperatures
-18°C (-0.4°F) temperatures at sundown

Deal with: 100 Mountain Ave, Banff, AB T1L 1B2

Nightrise Hours: January 9 – March 31 (in 2023)

  • Sunday – Thursday, 5PM – 9PM
  • Friday – Saturday, 5PM – 10PM

Value: There is no such thing as a further admission price for Nightrise because it’s included as a part of the Banff Gondola ticket (costs go up barely after 6:10PM). Primarily, Nightrise installations are activated within the night so simply be sure you take the gondola close to or after sundown.

Web site: Nightrise


  • How do you get to the Banff Gondola with no automobile? You possibly can name a cab or you’ll be able to take the Bow Valley ROAM bus on Route 1 which stops alongside Banff Avenue and ends at Banff Gondola. The worth for a one-way experience is $2 for adults, and $1 for seniors 65+ and youth 13-18.
  • How many individuals match contained in the gondola? The cabin can match 4 passengers every.
  • Are gondola rides non-public? Sure, your group may have their very own non-public gondola and will not be shared with others.
  • Are tickets refundable? Sure, they’re refundable as much as 28 hours of journey date.
  • If I keep too late at Nightrise, will I miss the bus? No, the final ROAM transit bus leaving Banff Gondola is 11:32PM.
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  • 2 of the 4 Wonders are outside so be sure you’re dressed for the chilly. On the summit, it is colder and windier so put on greater than you assume you may want.
  • On the Rooftop Statement Deck is a dome with seats (no heater), a number of propane hearth pits, and heater panels by the door.
  • The gondola will not be heated.
  • If it will get too chilly, you’ll be able to at all times head again inside.
  • If you happen to loved the Niagara Parks Energy Era Station and their present, Currents, you may positively like Nightrise.
  • In case you are seeking to {photograph} or watch the sundown with Banff beneath, the Rooftop Statement Deck has the perfect view.
  • Sky Bistro has nice views of the Sanson’s Peak and the left aspect which incorporates Bow Valley and Mount Bourgeau.
  • When making your reservation at Sky Bistro, be sure you assume forward of time, the place you’d prefer to be at sundown. If you would like to shoot a timelapse or watch the sundown outside, we advocate that you just ebook the earliest dinner so you’ll be able to benefit from the view from each areas whereas there’s nonetheless mild.

Day 5 Abstract

What you may see:

What you may do:

The place you may eat:

  • Breakfast – Brazen – Numerous brunch objects to decide on right here and is conveniently linked to the lodge.
  • Lunch – The Rebellion Bakery or LUPO – For a pleasant sandwich and occasional mixture, The Rebellion Bakery is central and subsequent to Mount Royal Lodge. LUPO serves the perfect Italian meals in Banff and plenty of say they’ve the perfect pizza in these components as properly.
  • Dinner – Sky Bistro – A restaurant with a spectacular view serving contemporary takes on Canadian delicacies and utilizing seafood caught on the BC coast, and naturally raised meats from Alberta.

The place you may keep:

Day 6 – Closing Day in Banff

asian man in mount royal hotel rooftop hot tub

6 days will really feel awfully brief by the point you get to the tip of your Banff itinerary, however relying in your flight or subsequent vacation spot, there simply may be a while to squeeze in some further mountain rejuvenation.

Take pleasure in one other hearty breakfast at Brazen and the remainder of the morning is yours to discover the city after an motion packed few days. Take a look at outlets like Rocky Mountain Flannel Firm, Rocky Mountain Cleaning soap Firm, Roots, choose up some souvenirs, and deal with your self to Banff Candy Shoppe treats, BeaverTails or COWS ice cream.

A becoming solution to bid farewell to Banff can be on the steamy bubbles atop Mount Royal Lodge. Seize your gown and head as much as the rooftop and take all of it in, one final time.

In case you have time for lunch, you may have a blast consuming at Sushi Home Banff, one of many only a few eating places in Canada that serve sushi on a conveyer belt, or on this case, a toy practice monitor.

Take a look at of your lodge and for these taking Banff Airporter, they’re going to choose you up on the lodge on the scheduled time and convey you again to Calgary Worldwide Airport.

Day 5 Abstract

The place you may eat:

  • Breakfast – Brazen – Numerous brunch objects to decide on right here and is conveniently linked to the lodge.
  • Lunch – Sushi Home Banff – SmallJapanese restaurant that serves sushi and different small dishes on a toy practice

The place to Keep in Banff & Lake Louise

To your winter in Banff, you may need to be sure you choose the best lodge for you. These are our high picks for locations to remain in Banff.


mount royal hotel where to stay in banff in winter

Mount Royal Lodge

A historic lodge that was renovated in 2018 and centrally positioned within the city of Banff, that includes mid-century trendy and modern design, modern rooms, and spectacular scorching tub.


irwin's mountain inn hotel in banff

Irwin’s Mountain Inn

Nice worth and pet-friendly property positioned on Banff Ave. with clear, comfy, and spacious rooms. Rooms embrace a kettle and the inn has an on-site sauna and ski locker.


mountain view b&b place to stay in banff

Mountain View Mattress & Breakfast

For these searching for a shared condo fashion lodging, this B&B is a superb selection. Minutes stroll from the town centre, you additionally get self-serve continental breakfast, entry to a kitchenette that has a microwave and fridge, and free parking.


fairmont banff springs where to stay in banff in winter

Fairmont Banff Springs

A legendary resort styled after a Scottish Baronial fortress and is a Nationwide Historic Website. It incorporates a 30m lap pool, a 19m heated out of doors pool, spa, and on-site actions embrace bowling, tennis, horseback driving, and {golfing}. That is actually a fairytale keep.

Map of Banff in Winter Itinerary

If you happen to love planning journeys with maps, we have included an interactive Google Map beneath that has pins on all the ski resorts, eating places, actions, and beneficial motels talked about on this Banff in winter itinerary.

TIP: Develop the map and create a duplicate in your logged-in Google account. WIth this copy, you’ll entry it in your Google Maps app below Saved. Scroll to the underside and search for “Maps”.

What We Missed in Banff

Whereas 6 days in Banff and Lake Louise would possibly appear to be a variety of time, you may rapidly understand that it isn’t potential to suit every part in.

Recognizing that this itinerary is actually extra geared in the direction of skiers and snowboarders which have an adventurous itch, we additionally needed to say just a few Banff winter actions that you just would possibly need to contemplate in your itinerary if you happen to’re searching for one thing a bit of totally different.

  • Lake Minnewanka – That is an epic spot to go ice skating on a frozen lake and solely a 20 minute drive from city.
  • Vermillion Lakes – These cluster of lakes are near the city of Banff and affords nice views of Cascade Mountain, particularly at dawn.
  • Ice stroll – The area is blessed with an abundance of epic areas for ice walks together with Johnston Canyon (decrease and higher falls), Grotto Canyon, and in and across the city of Banff the place you may see issues like frozen waterfalls.
  • Sleigh Experience – Nice for households, it is a charming and scenic 40 minute tour that each one guests love.
  • Abraham Lake – If you happen to’re questioning the place you’ll be able to see the ice bubbles close to Banff, that is the lake the place you’ve a very good likelihood to see this pure phenomenon sometimes mid-January to early February. To view it safely, contemplate this ice bubbles helicopter tour.
  • Wildlife Viewing – There are unbelievable alternatives to see animals akin to elk and deer if you realize the place to go. This winter tour is a superb choice.
  • Lake Louise – You’ll see Lake Louise from a distance from the ski resort however an amazing winter activitiy is to see Lake Louise and the Fairmont property up-close.
  • Banff Sizzling Springs – Soak within the sooting mineral-rich waters of Banff Higher Sizzling Springs. Simply ensure that they’ve sufficient water circulate within the winter earlier than you go.
  • Tunnel Mountain – Seize or lease ice cleats and hike the Tunnel Mountain winter trails that provide nice views of the Fairmont Banff Springs Lodge, Cascade Mountain, and Mount Rundle. On the summit, you may discover Parks Canada’s basic crimson chairs. Test for path situations earlier than you go.
  • Canine sledding – There are a number of mushing suppliers to take a look at if you would like to thrill of exploring the snowy tundra with the assistance of pleasant and hardworking huskies.
  • Cross nation snowboarding – Take this cross nation snowboarding lesson and tour with Freeheelin’ Adventures.
  • Full day tour within the winter – If you’d like to have the ability to see as a lot as you’ll be able to of the realm and you do not have a automobile, a non-public full or half day tour is a superb choice to see spots like Lake Louise, Moraine Lake, and Johnston Canton all in in the future. Likelihood is excessive you may see wildlife alongside the way in which as properly!l
  • Peyto Lake – One solution to see Peyto Lake is to mix it with the ice bubbles of Abraham Lake with this guided tour and snowshoe hike.

There’s in fact extra to see and do in Banff and Lake Louise however these ought to provide you with extra concepts to assist put collectively your winter getaway.

Closing Ideas on Banff in Winter

town of banff in winter sunset alpenglow

Imagine it or not, this was our first time to Banff within the winter and our expectations had been blasted away at each flip with this 6 day itinerary.

The meals – Banff and Lake Louise is not historically regarded as a culinary hub nevertheless it actually must be. Every of the eating places you may go to on this journey will shock you.

The powder – Along with the huge number of terrain, make the most of the contemporary snow which is able to really feel like snowboarding or snowboarding on a cloud. The combination of chilly climate, altitude, with contemporary and dry air is a blissful system that’ll have you ever dreaming of it even after you permit.

The vibes – We regularly exit of our solution to escape the chilly or just take it without any consideration however SnowDays and the abundance of winter actions triggers one thing inside you that’ll make you need to stick out your tongue on contemporary falling snowflakes.

Banff will go away you in awe and have you ever chuckling inside since you’ve stumbled upon one thing you did not know you may discover.

Continuously Requested Questions

When is the perfect time to go to Banff in winter?

One of the best time of the 12 months to go to Banff is in January when you’ll be able to pair your journey with the SnowDays pageant.

When is SnowDays in Banff?

The dates for SnowDays adjustments 12 months to 12 months however it’s normally the third week and spans 12 days.

What’s skijoring?

Skijoring is sport the place a horse drags a skier or snowboard on a monitor of snow whereas performing methods. SnowDays is an iconic showcase for the game in Banff the place the professionals do jumps, catch rings, and showcase their swagger.

Are you able to go to Banff with no automobile rental?

Getting round Banff and Lake Louise is sort of straightforward with no automobile because of ROAM transit and the SkiBig3 shuttle to their mountains. Banff Airporter additionally makes it handy to get from Calgary Airport to Banff.

What number of days do you want in Banff in winter?

Ideally, you need to spend 5-7 days in Banff within the winter season.

Is it protected to stroll on the ice on Bow River within the city of Banff?

Whilst you’ll see different vacationers stroll on the ice, it’s not protected to stroll on Bow River on the town due to the numerous thickness of ice and altering situations.

The place are you able to see ice bubbles in Banff?

The closest place to see ice bubbles kind is at Abraham Lake, 2 hours north of the city of Banff.

When is it protected to go ice skating on a lake?

The beneficial minimal thickness of ice earlier than it is protected for ice skating is 15 centimetres or 6 inches.

The place is the perfect place to lease skis and snowboards in Banff?

One of the best place to lease winter gear is on the SkiBig3 Journey Hub, positioned within the city of Banff. You possibly can lease every part from skis, snowboards, winter garments, and ice cleats.

Do you want to lock your gear at SkiBig3 resorts?

To guard your gear at any resort all over the world, it is a good suggestion to lock your ski or snowboard however anecdotally it is fairly protected to depart your gear on the rack unlocked.

When is the perfect time to go to the Banff Gondola?

One of the best time to go to Banff Gondola is true earlier than sundown so you’ll be able to benefit from the mild from Sky Bistro or from one of many many viewing platforms.

Do you want a Banff Nationwide Park Go for a visit to Banff?

Sure, for the reason that city of Banff, SkiBig3 resorts, and all the actions round Banff and Lake Louise are all inside Banff Nationwide Park, you will want to have a Nationwide Park Go which is best to buy on-line forward of your journey.

This journey was in partnership with Banff & Lake Louise and SkiBig3.

What you must learn subsequent


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