Even though I spent 11 years of my life in Canada, I have to admit that I haven’t seen much of it. That’s why I jumped at the opportunity to go to Banff with Alex and our friend Daniel. They really wanted to go skiing/snowboarding there and I just wanted to experience western Canada and see the beautiful mountains. We landed in Calgary, rented a car and drove to Banff, which is only an hour away from Calgary. Our friend Kara who actually lives in Calgary also joined us for the trip. Watch the Vlog for the whole experience. Below are just some tips and recommendations from our personal experience in Banff.
Things to See, Do and Eat:
Lake Louise is what you may have seen on a postcard or commercial about Canada. Turquoise water and immense mountains with snow peaks. That’s not exactly what Lake Louise looks like in March, because it’s still very much winter here. The lake is completely frozen, and makes for a great spot to skate, play hockey, build ice castles or just walk around and take pictures. It’s a very magical and beautiful place, so I highly recommend visiting it if you are in the area.
Lake Louise Ski Resort is where we went skiing. It was actually Alex’s first time skiing so we took some classes, which I think was very helpful. Alex usually snowboards, so he felt a bit uncomfortable. Also, the conditions were not that great when we went, very icy and not a lot of snow. Oh well, we still had fun and enjoyed spectacular views of the mountain range while we skied.
Hidden Ridge Lodge is where we stayed. It was located in a very convenient and beautiful spot that overlooked a mountain range.
Radium Hot Springs - We didn’t get a chance to make it to the hot spring this time around unfortunately, however thats definitely something I want to experience. It’s natural hot spring water, so it’s super healthy and good for you.
Bison - Eating out wasn’t that easy in Banff for us, as their cuisine is very meat heavy. Bison was a great restaurant that had a few vegetarian / pescaterian options. The food was very fresh and flavorful.
Nourish is a cool vegetarian spot. I wouldn’t say it’s super healthy, but they definitely try. They have smoothies, and some gluten free options.
Juniper Bistro - We went here on our last evening in Banff. It was a beautiful sunny day and we watched the sun set over the mountains. The views in this restaurant are absolutely spectacular. They have a beautiful patio that I’m sure is very much in demand when the weather gets warmer. The food was also very good and they had some healthy options for us.
- Check snow conditions before traveling to Banff, if the purpose of your trip is skiing or snowboarding.
- If you are a newbie like me when it comes to skiing, take lessons. I think it makes a huge difference, especially on big mountains like in Banff. It’s not worth risking your life.
- If you are not into snow sports, then visit Banff in the summer. There are amazing hikes here in the summer and you can actually see Lake Louise in all of its glory!
- Be aware of bears if you are going for a hike. Apparently it’s very common to see them here.