Pretty In Banff

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This year marked the 150th year anniversary of Canada, and what better way to celebrate our cheerful neighbor by visiting their beautiful national parks, eh?

For anyone’s first time going to Banff, here’s a short guide on visiting some of their most iconic lakes!

Where to Stay (answer: not Calgary)

We were idiots and decided to stay in Calgary. Well, I’m the idiot since I was planning my boyfriend’s birthday and decided to be cheap. I know, I know, I win best girlfriend of the year. Driving a total of 5 hours each day really strengthened our relationship. I really encourage all couples to try this.

Jokes aside, I highly highly recommend staying in Banff. Even though it’s a bit pricier, it’s totally worth not driving 2.5 hours each way. There are hostels if you want to save bit of money, or if you want to rough it out, you can camp. Regardless, do not stay in Calgary.

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Itinerary 

Day 1: 

  • Peyto Lake
  • Bow Lake
  • Herbert Lake
  • Lake Louise
Peyto Lake
Bow Lake
Lake Louise

Day 2:

On our second day, there was a huge forest fire in the surrounding Banff area, so the entire sky was smokey and gloomy.

  • Mirror Lake
  • Lake Agnes
  • Lake Agnes Tea House
  • Big Beehive Overlook

Day 3:

  • Moraine Lake
  • Canoeing on Lake Louise

Best Time To Go

We went in July where the high was 80°F and the low was about 60°F. A lot the hikes are also ridden with bugs and mosquitos, so bring dat deet! Keep in mind that the summer time is the most popular season to go, so prepare for lots of Asian tourists.

I would definitely visit again sometime in September/October where the crowds die down and the colors are a bit more crisp. The sunlight was a bit harsh during the day for photography and 15 hour daylight meant the sun didn’t set until 10pm.

Final Tips

Since it’s Canada’s 150th anniversary, all the parks were free! Get ahead of the game and get your pass in advance here: https://2017parkpass.banfflakelouise.com/

Now go enjoy the Canadian Rockies!

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