David Suzuki's Nature Challenge
 
   

The Canadian Rockies have exceptional accommodations, in an array of settings, with the widest variety of features you could ever imagine, really! The Chateau Lake Louise is a world class luxury hotel fit for royalty (after all the town gets it's name from a princess) while some of the back country lodges are as rustic and down to earth as anything you might hope to find in the wilderness. Somewhere in between are the small B&B's, hotels, motels, inns and front counry lodges, which the rockies have a fair share of. Something you might really enjoy are the log cabins which can be found in a variety of surroundings, such as forested area not far from a townsite or off along a beautiful mountain road in the high country. Regardless where you stay one thing is certain, given the areas phenomenal natural setting it's very difficult to find a poor view from any room's window.

 
         

Our favourite places to stay in the rockies are at one of the backcountry lodges, particularly those which you have to hike, bike or ski into (although some people take the trip in a helicopter). Some notables are Skoki Lodge, Lake O'Hara Lodge and the Mt. Assiniboine Lodge

Lodging and Accommodations


 

Camping

Front country camping in Banff offers something for everyone, from full service sites to the more private and perhaps wilder campsites in the woods, off the beaten track. No matter what your taste, you should find what your looking for if you get there early enough in the day to register or better still make reservations well in advance.

Banff has a number of campgrounds and campsites that are available on a first come, first serve basis. In high season these campgrounds become full very early in the day. Before check out time, you would be well advised to drop by the campground of your choice to see what's available if you haven't got a site when you reach the park. Flexibility in high season is a sensible approach. If you want to ensure your self a site make sure to reserve early .

There are thirteen front country campgrounds in the park with over 2,400 campsites. Two campgrounds are open all year round (Lake Louise is tent only) with the main season starting in May through September, while high season (reservations recommended) is in July and August.

Campground Reservations - Reservations are highly recommended in high season.

The following is a list of the front country campsites with information on the facilities and services available.

Tunnel Mountain Campgrounds - I, II & Trailer

The largest campground in Banff is very close to the town itself, just a 2.4 km drive away on Tunnel Mountain. There are 3 drive in sections, two of which are open seasonally. The campground has 321 full service sites, 618 non-serviced site and 188 power only sites in Village II, which is open all year long. All campgrounds have showers and a sani dump.

Two Jack Main Campground

Looking for something more secluded in the woods, Two Jack Main Campground just 12 km from Banff is just the ticket. It is located on the scenic Minnewanka Lake loop drive. There are 380 sites, flush toilets, kitchen shelters but no showers. The campground has a sani dump. The campground is opened sesonally.

Two Jack Lakeside Campground

This is one of the smaller campgrounds near the town of Banff with 74 sites available. It is 12 km from town and is located along a river. There are showers available. The campground is opens in May and closes in September.

Castle Mountain Campground

This is a secluded campground just 34 km from Banff with 43 sites. There is a convenience store in the area along with kitchen shelters. There are flush toilets but no showers. This campground is open in May and closes in September.

Protection Mountain Campground

The campground has many hiking trails which start in the area with a great deal of wildlife to be seen. It is 48 km from the town of Banff and has 89 sites. There are flush toilets but no showers. It is open in June and closes in September.

Johnston's Canyon Campground

This is one of the more scenic campgrounds in Banff National Park. It is located between Banff and Lake Louise just 25 km from the town of Banff. There are 132 sites near a flowing creek where you'll find a trail that takes you up to Johnston Canyon with a view of the two waterfalls. There are flush toilets, showers and a sani dump.. The campground is open from in June and closes in September.

Lake Louise Campgrounds - Trailer & Tent

The campground is outside Lake Louise about 58km distance from the town of Banff. It's one of the larger campgrounds in the park with 189 R.V. sites with electric hook-ups and 206 unserviced sites. The Trailer campground is open year round. There are flush toilets, showers and a sani dump..

Mosquito Creek Campground

Mosquito Creek Campground is 82 km from Banff and has 32 sites not far from the cliffs of Bow Peak. There are pit toilets but no showers. This campground is open year round.

Waterfowl Lakes Campground

It is about 115 km from the town of Banff and has 116 sites on the Mistaya River which flows into Waterfowl Lake. There is a trail at this campground that leads to Cirque and Chephren Lakes. There are flush toilets but no showers. This campground is opens in June and closes in September.

Rampart Creek Campground

This is the furthest campground from the town of Banff in the north of the park. It is 88 km North of Lake Louise, not far from the Columbia Icefields in a very beautiful area. There are 50 sites, pit toilets but no showers.The campground opens in June and closes in September.


 

Hostels

If you're idea of hostelling is pulling up a piece of the rug, in an urban fallout shelter, with a dozen strangers - think again. Hostels range from a place to unroll your sleeping bag, to something approaching resort like accommodations, in beautiful settings with you're own private room. Prices are still unbeatable and the company is usually interested and interesting world travelers. If you're a boarder or skier take note, there are hostels in most of the major resort areas throughout the country.

Hostelling International-Canada

Castle Mountain - Located northwest of Banff, between highway 1 and 1A

Reservation_Accepted
Number of Beds: 36
Operating Season: All Year
Check In Times: 17-23
Cooking Facilities: Yes
Meals Available: No
Basic Store: Yes
Lockers: Yes
Laundry: No
Private/Family Rooms: Yes
Parking: Yes
Wheel Chair Access: Yes
Payment Type Accepted: Visa, MC, Cash

.
Hilda Creek - Located 120km northwest of Lake Louise on the the Jasper Banff border.

Reservation_Accepted
Number of Beds: 21
Operating Season: Closed December 15 to 25
Check In Times: 17-23
Cooking Facilities: Yes
Meals Available: No

Basic Store: Yes
Lockers: No
Laundry: No
Private/Family Rooms: No
Parking: Yes
Wheel Chair Access: Yes
Payment Type Accepted: Visa, MC, Cash


Mosquito Creek - Located 32km northwest of Lake Louise along highway 93

Reservation_Accepted
Number of Beds: 38
Operating Season: All Year
Check In Times: 17-23
Cooking Facilities: Yes
Meals Available: No
Basic Store: Yes
Lockers: No
Laundry: No
Private/Family Rooms: No
Parking: Yes
Wheel Chair Access: Yes
Payment Type Accepted: Visa, MC, Cash


Rampart Creek - Located 95km northwest of Lake Louise along highway 93.

Reservation_Accepted
Number of Beds: 30
Operating Season: Closed Monday-Thursday, January to April
Check In Times: 17-23
Cooking Facilities: Yes
Meals Available: No
Basic Store: Yes
Lockers: No
Laundry: No
Private/Family Rooms: Yes
Parking: Yes
Wheel Chair Access: Yes
Payment Type Accepted: Visa, MC, Cash


Banff International Hostel - Located at the edge of the Banff townsite on Tunnel Mountain Road.

Reservation_Accepted
Number of Beds: 154
Operating Season: All Year
Check In Times: 24hr
Cooking Facilities: Yes
Meals Available: Complete
Basic Store: Yes
Lockers: Yes
Laundry: Yes
Private/Family Rooms: Yes
Parking: Yes
Wheel Chair Access: Yes
Payment Type Accepted: Visa, MC, Cash


Lake Louise International Hostel (Alpine Center) - From highway 1 turn into Lake Louise and take a right on Village Road

Reservation_Accepted
Number of Beds: 150
Operating Season: All Year
Check In Times: 24hr
Cooking Facilities: Yes
Meals Available: Complete
Basic Store: No
Lockers: Yes
Laundry: Yes
Private/Family Rooms: Yes
Parking: Yes
Wheel Chair Access: Yes
Payment Type Accepted: Visa, MC, Cash
International Booking Network: Yes

Canmore - Canmore, Canadian Rockies
Calgary - City Centre, Calgary

Jasper -


 

Backcountry Lodges

Backcountry lodges are one of the finest ways to see the Rockies. They are often located in some of the most beautiful areas of the mountain parks. Most of the lodges aren't accessible by car and usually require you hike, horse pack, ski (may require backcountry gear) or snowshoe in (distances vary but are usually in the 10 to 30km range). Some like Lake O'Hara (Yoho National Park) have a shuttle (with limited places so book well in advance) or even helicopter access as is the case with Mount Assiniboine (Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park). Mount Assinboine will fly in your packs or luggage making the trip that much easier. Be sure to check with your chosen lodge for the exact details while you make your reservations - which are a must. Just prior to your visit, contact the lodge regarding current and projected weather and trail conditions.

  • Halfway Lodge - Ski, Hike, Horseback, Banff National Park, Canadian Rockies, Alberta
  • Mount Assiniboine Lodge - Ski, Hike, Helicopter, Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park (Banff's neighbour), Canadian Rockies, British Columbia
  • Shadow Lake Lodge - Ski, Hike, Mountain Bike (MTB only part way) - 14 kilometres, Lodge and Log Cabins, Banff National Park, Alberta
  • Skoki Lodge - Ski, Hike, Banff National Park, Canadian Rockies, Alberta
  • Sundance Lodge - Ski, Hike, Horseback, Banff National Park, Canadian Rockies, Alberta

 

Front Country Lodges & Cabins

 

 

 


Resources

Banff

Out-There's Banff Main Page


Banff's Neighbours

 

 

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