Alberta: the final word seven-day drive itinerary | Discover cool Canada

Day 1: Calgary

With a flourishing bar and eating scene, and quite a few various and arty neighbourhoods, cosmopolitan, multicultural Calgary is rather more than simply the gateway to the Rockies. Direct flights from London (each day from Heathrow, and a number of occasions per week from Gatwick) additionally make it a handy place to begin. Load-up and be taught, with a meals tour of the historic Inglewood neighbourhood. The tour stops on the high-end Rouge, in what’s now a heritage website, in addition to taking in Alberta’s First Nations arts and meals tradition.

Style-up and get your cowboy threads sorted year-round on the Alberta Boot Company, or head to Smithbilt for the distinctive white hats that have grow to be a logo of town – in order that when the Calgary Stampede rodeo involves city in July, you look the half.

Day 2: Canmore

Head for the hills to begin your roadtrip. Banff nationwide park – Canada’s oldest – is a straightforward hour-and-a-half drive from Calgary. But don’t skip the picturesque and vibrant mountain city of Canmore, simply exterior the park’s boundary, the place the peaks of the Rockies present the backdrop to quite a few music and humanities festivals all year long.

Cycling in Banff national park.

For a city with a inhabitants of slightly below 14,000 folks, the city is overflowing with eating and consuming locations. And it additionally claims the honour of being home to the most important variety of Olympians per capita in Canada, who use the altitude to coach. (If you possibly can’t beat ‘em, be part of ‘em.)

In the summer time, hit the bike trails. A 13-mile path connects to Banff, with an extra 50 miles of different pathways to comply with. In winter, check out one of many latest crazes in these elements: fats biking. Extra-large tyres will take you throughout in any other case inaccessible snow-covered trails. Don’t fret, there are hand-warmers too. Afterwards, head on to Banff to warm-up on the thermal waters of the Upper Hot Springs.

Day three: Banff

Horse riding in Banff.

It’s inconceivable to be bored in Banff with the myriad actions on supply. If you need motion and journey, attempt white-water rafting, mountaineering and horse driving. If you need to take it simple, simply discover a patio, order a espresso and sit and watch the clouds transfer over the mountains that hug the city. If you need one thing in between, how a few spherical of golf? Banff has a number of the most stunning programs within the world. You definitely can’t skip city with out a fondue from the unironically kitsch Grizzly House.

Day four: Lake Louise

Lake Agnes Tea House in the Canadian Rockies.

Put merely, Lake Louise doesn’t look actual. Its searing blue waters mirror again the towering glacier that created the lake 10,000 years in the past. While within the winter the lake freezes over and turns into a fairy-tale setting for ice skaters and sleigh rides, in the summertime it’s populated by canoes with travellers eager to glimpse the ice close-up. When you get bored with taking within the views from the genteel-surrounds of the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise – if such a factor is feasible – take the steep 2-mile (three.5-km) hike from the resort to the Disney-esque Lake Agnes Tea House. First constructed by the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1901 as a shelter for hikers, this lakeshore log cabin sits in a valley of its personal, and has been serving tea since 1905.

Day 5: Icefields Parkway

The Athabasca Glacier

The spectacularly scenic Icefields Parkway hugs hillsides and traces its well past greater than 100 historic glaciers on its 146-mile (235-km) route from Lake Louise to Jasper nationwide park.

With dramatic waterfalls and sweeping lakes at practically each flip, you’re going to need to cease typically. Head to the best level of the parkway to cease on the viewpoint for the glowing turquoise waters of Peyto Lake. And go away time to discover the Columbia Icefield, the most important ice subject within the Rocky Mountains. You can tour it in an enormous all-terrain automobile or, when you fancy a chicken’s eye view, by helicopter. And on the Glacier Discovery Centre, excursions will take you to stroll on the up-to-300m thick ice of the Athabasca Glacier.

Day 6: Jasper

The Rocky Mountaineer train

Sweet little Jasper – home to only four,500 folks – has appeal. Surrounded by pure magnificence, it’s an journey sports activities hub, and a key cease for the long-lasting Rocky Mountaineer practice. You’ll be spoiled for alternative for locations to eat. Papa George’s – a family-run Jasper establishment since 1925, affords consolation meals, reminiscent of fluffy buttermilk pancakes, in a homely setting. Head out of city for one of many nice Rocky Mountain experiences – a cruise throughout Maligne Lake. Here, you’ll discover the gorgeous Spirit Island – its tiny grouping of timber, surrounded by crystal blue water, has made it one of many world’s most photographed magnificence spots.

Day 7: Edmonton

Edmonton folk festival.

Head east from the mountains to the metropolis. Nicknamed “festival city”, Edmonton at all times has one thing happening – from music festivals to fringe theatre, to farmers’ markets. Make positive you take a look at the ambiance of the historic Old Strathcona, which has loads of quirky, impartial procuring, eating places and bars. Encompassing greater than 90 miles (150km) of multi-use trails and over 20 main metropolis parks, the luxurious Edmonton River valley is the most important expanse of city parkland in North America. Head down with a picnic throughout the summer time, or save these aching legs and rent a Segway.

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