Fly to Calgary
Fly into Calgary International airport and transfer independently to your hotel. Stretch your legs with a stroll down Stephen Avenue for a drink and a bite to eat in one of the many restaurants on this lively pedestrianised street. If you want to get into the Canadian spirit, then treat yourself to a Caesar – the official cocktail of Canada, invented in Calgary – a Bloody Mary with clam juice.
Overnight Calgary: Classic Hotel – Ramada Hotel Downtown; Deluxe Hotel - Fairmont Palliser
Calgary - Banff
You’ll be picked up from your hotel to take the coach transfer to the lovely mountain resort of Banff, in the heart of the Rockies. Explore the charming main street where you will find quirky boutiques, cosy cafes and lively restaurants, all with the magnificent back drop of the mountains.
Four Nights Banff: Classic Hotel – Elk + Avenue; Deluxe Hotel - Fairmont Banff Springs
Days 3, 4 & 5
Banff National Park
You have three full days to enjoy Banff and its beautiful surrounds. We thoroughly recommend donning your walking shoes and picking up one of the well-marked trails along the Bow River and through the pretty woodland. There are lots of short strolls, but if you want to walk for an hour or so, then we recommend the trail out of the town to Surprise Corner, taking in views of the frozen river below, majestic Fairmont Banff Springs and the surrounding mountains.
Banff National Park It was established in 1885 when the hot springs were “discovered” and tourism began, and we’ve included admission to enjoy the waters of the hot springs into this holiday (open daily 10am to 10pm) Of course the hot springs were already well known to the First Nations peoples who had lived here for many many years. Banff is located on the traditional territories of the Iyarhe Nakoda Nations (Bearspaw, Wesley, Chiniki), the Blackfoot Confederacy (Siksika, Kainai, Piikani), the Tsuut'ina – part of the Dene people, Ktunaxa, Secwepemc, Mountain Cree, and Metis.
Another unique experience that we’ve included in this holiday is a tranquil sleigh ride through the Banff countryside – a lovely afternoon excursion.
There are also several other activities and excursions we could book for you – and all of these come highly recommended.
Banff Gondola – Ascend Sulphur Mountain for awe-inspiring 360-degree panoramic views of six mountain ranges. At the visit centre there is an interesting exhibition where you can learn all about the local geography, geology and history, and there is a lovely café for drinks and snacks, and a very good restaurant.
Johnston Canyon Ice Walk - This guided walking tour leads you through the natural wonder of Johnston Canyon in all of its winter glory. You will take an easy walking trail along catwalks which lead you to the frozen lower waterfalls and through a cave before your final stop at the upper falls, framed by gigantic ice pillars. (Includes ice cleats and hiking poles, hotel pick-up and drop-off, hot chocolate and maple cookies)
Helicopter Tours of the Rockies: Take a spectacular flight-seeing tour of the Rockies. We have two options to choose from – see the “Optional Excursions” tab for details
Guided Snowshoeing Tours – We offer two two-hour tours and both are suitable for complete beginners.
Paint Pots: Snow shoe along an easy trail through a forest of pine trees to the Paint Pots, a cultural treasure within the National Park. Here you will learn about the history of the fur trade as you explore the fascinating Paint Pots, which are mineral deposits once used by First Nations people for rock painting. After this crisp winter walk, enjoy a uniquely Canadian treat: hot maple taffy poured into snow to make a sweet frozen dessert and perhaps try a ‘crazy carpet’ slide down the hill while it’s being made. This is an excellent trip for beginners as it covers a mainly flat terrain with minimal elevation gain.
Lake Louise Ski Area: This tour will take you to the top of the mountain to experience a view previously only accessible to skiers and snowboarders. Enjoy the breath-taking views whilst certified guides show you how to use snowshoes, while sharing stories of the history, landscape and wildlife of Lake Louise.
Banff – Lake Louise
Today you’ll be picked up from your hotel by coach for the short transfer to Chateau Fairmont Lake Louise. Take time to explore this iconic (and frankly huge!) hotel and then relax over a hot chocolate or cocktail.
Two Nights: Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise
There are several activities included in your stay at Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise and you can choose these when you arrive, from ice-skating on the frozen lake to show-shoeing around the woodland paths, or you can spend time in the indoor pool, jacuzzi and steam room.
We can also book you an exciting trip out into the great outdoors on an “introduction to snowshoeing” tour. On this two-hour guided tour, you will be taken to the top of the mountain to experience the breath-taking views. Certified guides will show you how to use snowshoes while sharing stories of the landscape, wildlife and history of Lake Louise.
Lake Louise - Calgary airport - fly home
It’s your last day, and after a leisurely start, you’ll be picked up by your coach transfer to Calgary airport for your flight home.