1. Visit the Town
The town of Banff itself is small, but it packs a sensory wallop that will leave you breathless, with soaring mountain peaks encircling a quaint, alpine setting. Its main street bustles with shopping and restaurants. Many are locally-owned, brimming with Canadian-made art and photography. The food offerings are ethnically diverse, but they include homegrown favorites such as Alberta steak, bison and elk. Banff Homes for Sale are the most desirable market for vacation homes in the country.
The list of amenities is pretty much self-evident to anyone who has passed through the Rockies: Banff National Park as your backyard, and excellent skiing and climbing everywhere to be found in the austere surrounding area, it is no surprise that these two small towns have become hotbeds for tourist attraction throughout the year.
2. The Gondola
Soar to the top of Sulphur Mountain to experience a stunning bird’s-eye view of six incredible mountain ranges. With breathtaking views in every direction, your adventure begins with an eight-minute journey to the summit of Sulphur Mountain in a modern, fully enclosed four-passenger gondola cabin.
Glide up over the treetops to the crest of a steep-sided Rocky Mountain peak and step out into a jaw-dropping mountaintop experience at an elevation of 2,281 meters (7,486 feet). Stroll along the ridgetop boardwalk where the views get better with every step. Then warm up in our newly transformed, state-of-the-art summit facility. With new restaurants, interactive interpretive exhibits, a multi-sensory theatre, and a breathtaking 360-degree rooftop observation deck, the new Banff Gondola summit heightens every sense.
3. Lake Minnewanka
See the Rocky Mountains from a new perspective while touring beautiful Lake Minnewanka on a panoramic 1-hour interpretive cruise. Beginning from the western end of the largest lake in Banff, Lake Minnewanka Cruise sets sail under towering peaks. Take in breathtaking mountains and emerald-green water as you keep a watchful eye on forested slopes and rocky shorelines for wildlife and waterfalls.
4. The Columbia Icefield
The Columbia Icefield is the largest icefield in the Canadian Rockies, covering some 230 sq km. Draped over the continental divide on a high alpine plateau along the Alberta-BC border, it receives an average of 7 m (23 ft) of new snowfall per year. Not all of that snow can melt in the short summers so it accumulates, turning to ice which flows outward through the surrounding passes, creating fingers of ice known as glaciers, the Athabasca Glacier being the most well-known.
A tour takes visitors onto the surface of the glacier using a massive vehicle especially designed for glacial travel. Upon setting foot onto the ancient ice, the stillness in the air is punctuated by the gurgling of water as it etches paths in the ice. A strategically placed water bottle allowed Gabriel a taste of pristine, undiluted glacier water.
5. The Glacier Skywalk
Glacier Skywalk is a 1,312-foot long walkway, perched 280 meters above the floor of the Sunwapta Valley, offering unobstructed vistas of the snow-capped mountains and valleys beyond. From the moment you get down from the coach, walk the 400m trail, offering interpretive displays on the region’s geology, biology, ecology, and Aboriginal history.
Walk out onto the glass-floored observation platform and see the awe-inspiring scenery around you from ice-capped mountain peaks to vast glacier-formed valleys.