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Banff, Lake Louise

Canadian Rockies & Northern Lights

Edmonton to Calgary, Alberta - Example 11 Day Tour
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Explore Canada's rugged mountains and hunt for the northern lights in Alberta's night skies. As you drive through the gorgeous Canadian wilderness, keep an eye out for moose, white-tailed deer, and elk. Admire ice curtains along a steel catwalk built into the Johnston Canyon rock cliffs. Meet and greet a team of canines before embarking on sledding, one of the many optional activities available. Alternatively, simply wrap your hands around a mug of hot chocolate and lose yourself in the Rockies' splendor. This 11-day tour is packed with jaw-dropping panoramas of snow-capped mountain ranges and frozen wonderlands.
Alberta Northern LightsAthabasca Glacier, AlbertaCanadian RockiesJasper National ParkJasper National ParkLake Louise, Banff, AlbertaJasper National ParkPeyto Lake, Banff National Park, AlbertaBanff - Icefields ParkwayBanff, Lake Louise
Highlights
  • Uncover the awe-inspiring beauty of the Canadian Rockies on foot.
  • Explore Banff National Park and relax in the Banff upper hot springs.
  • Visit the natural beauty and turquoise waters of renowned Lake Louise.
  • Discover the Columbia Icefield's glaciers and peaks, including Athabasca Glacier.
Places Visited
  • Canada
  • North America
  • Alberta
  • Banff National Park
  • Banff, Alberta
  • Calgary
  • Edmonton
  • Lake Louise, Alberta
  • Peace River
Activity Level: Easy Active
Moderately active but not overly strenuous. This level includes activities like casual cycling, yoga, or excursions/activities that typically last 3-5 hours total each day.
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Edmonton, Alberta

Welcome to beautiful Edmonton, Canada. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm today. If you arrive early, perhaps visit the biggest mall in North America: West Edmonton Mall, or instead, learn about Canadian living history at Fort Edmonton Park, visit the nearby Ukrainian Cultural Village, and explore the small theatres and diners of the University District.

Day 2: Edmonton | Peace River, Alberta

  • 1 Breakfast
Get a full-on sense of Alberta’s past with an included morning visit to the Royal Alberta Museum, the largest in western Canada. Learn about the heritage of Alberta’s people and natural environment through the exhibitions on display. Then, drive through the spectacular wilderness to the town of Peace River (approximately 6 hours). After dinner, search for a view of the spellbinding northern lights (clouds permitting). Enjoy a bonfire under the darkness of the night sky and cook some s’mores while you’re waiting.

Included Activities:
  • Edmonton - Royal Alberta Museum
  • Peace River - Bonfire and Smore's

Day 3: Peace River, Alberta

  • 1 Breakfast
Today is free to choose your adventure in Peace River. Perhaps head to the Wildland Provincial Park, an important wildlife corridor for elk, deer, and bears. A perfect place to practice snowshoeing before the excursion to Lake Louise later in the trip. Free to stroll along the Peace River, which may or may not be frozen, and breathe in the mountain air. Try your luck at ice fishing. After dinner, head back again to look for the unpredictable northern lights in your second dedicated night of sky gazing. The lights occur when several factors, including local cloud levels, solar flares on the sun, or solar wind, converge to produce magical hues dancing in the winter night sky.

Included Activities:
    • Peace River - Snowshoeing

    Day 4: Jasper, Alberta

    • 1 Breakfast
    Drive to Jasper National Park (approximately 6 hours), arriving at your hotel in the late afternoon. Once settled in, go searching for wildlife such as moose, elk, deer, bears, and coyotes. In the evening, perhaps take yourself out for dinner in Jasper, as there are a variety of restaurants to choose from. Ask your local leader for suggestions on where to go.

    Included Activities:
        • Jasper National Park

        Day 5: Jasper, Alberta

        • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch
        Experience the caves, icicles, and frozen waterfalls of Maligne Canyon on an ice walk in the morning. The canyon’s name refers to its ethereal beauty in winter, where waterfalls freeze over and icicles cascade like teeth in the mouths of the park’s many caves. A local guide will safely escort you through this maze of natural ice sculptures while learning about Jasper’s karst topography and the mystery of disappearing Medicine Lake. Today is lunch at Jasper Brewing Co: Canada’s first National Park Brewery. The rest of the afternoon is free. Try one of Jasper’s short walking trails, admiring the scenic mountain ranges that greet you in every direction.

        Included Activities:
              • Jasper - Maligne Canyon Icewalk
              • Jasper - Lunch at a National Park Brewery

              Day 6: Lake Louise, Alberta

              • 1 Breakfast
              Prepare for an unforgettable drive as you set out on the Icefields Parkway. The world-renowned roadway between Jasper and Banff stretches 232 kilometers (144 miles) through a landscape of jagged mountaintops and past 100 ancient glaciers. At its heart is the Columbia Icefield, the largest ice field in the Rocky Mountains. The massive Athabasca Glacier, measuring 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) long and 1 kilometer (.62 mile) wide flows within walking distance of the roadway, so take a hike to its toe (the current lowest endpoint of a glacier). Tonight, arrive at Lake Louise to relax and ready yourself for another active day tomorrow.

              Included Activities:
                      • Icefields Parkway - Hike to toe of Athabasca Glacier

                      Day 7: Lake Louise, Alberta

                      • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch
                      Lake Louise is an iconic snapshot of Canada, and today experience one of its many beautiful moods. There are many options on how to spend the day, including an optional horse-drawn sleigh ride past the glacial lake. Take a snowshoe hike along with one of the lake’s many trails, or perhaps pop on a pair of skates and practice some figure eights (or ice stumbles) while gliding across the surface of the lake. Included today is lunch at The Station Restaurant – a heritage railway station that serves hearty Canadian favorites. If you’re looking to continue to put your feet up, the Fairmont Chateau does a beautiful afternoon tea. For those lucky enough to be in Lake Louise during its annual Ice Magic Festival in January, be sure to take a look at the precision and delicate skill on display in the various ice sculptures by the lake. If you wish for additional excursions during your time in Lake Louise, pick from the following optional activities and contact us for current excursion pricing.

                      Included Activities:
                                • Lake Louise - Snowshoeing
                                • Lake Louise - All Canadian Lunch
                                Optional Activities:
                                            • Lake Louise - Sleigh Ride
                                            • Lake Louise - Ice Skating including Hockey Stick

                                            Day 8: Banff, Alberta

                                            • 1 Breakfast
                                            Drive to nearby Banff (approximately 1 hour): Canada’s most famous mountain resort town. While located inside a national park, Banff offers plenty of shops, restaurants, and bars to distract you from the surrounding natural beauty. Gain a sense of Canadian Rockies culture at the Whyte Museum, where over 200 years of artwork tells the story of the rugged men and women who settled in Banff. Sub-zero temperatures turn Banff’s waterfalls into glittering ice sculptures, and today visit Johnston Canyon ice walk to see this all on display. Hike along steel catwalks built into the canyon walls and wander among massive pillars of ice. With all this adventuring, it’s a perfect time for a Beavertail tasting experience. Beavertails are deep-fried sweet dough made with whole wheat flour and pulled by hand to resemble the long flat tail of a Beaver. Order classic cinnamon and sugar or, go a little bit wild with some whipped cream and decadent Nutella.

                                            Included Activities:
                                                        • Banff National Park
                                                        • Banff - Johnston Canyon Icewalk

                                                        Day 9: Banff National Park

                                                        • 1 Breakfast
                                                        Enjoy a free morning in Banff before an included snowshoe hike with your group at Sunshine Village Ski Resort, about 20 minutes out of town. To start, head above the tree line, and then put on your snowshoes and trek across the white powder with a professional guide. Your backcountry hike will be made extra sweet with a stop for hot cocoa and cookies on top of the (Sunshine Village) world. If you wish for additional excursions during your time in Banff National Park, pick from the following optional activities and contact us for current excursion pricing.

                                                        Included Activities:
                                                                      • Banff - Guided snowshoe hike on Top of the World
                                                                      Optional Activities:
                                                                      • Banff - Cable Car up Sulphur Mountain
                                                                      • Banff - Hot Springs

                                                                      Day 10: Banff | Canmore, Alberta

                                                                      • 1 Breakfast
                                                                      In the morning, take a short drive to Canmore, which is within the Kananaskis Country park system, and embark on an included ice walk at the Grotto Canyon, using special hiking crampons to grip the smooth frozen creek beds. Alternatively, book yourself a dogsledding adventure with a trusted provider, where you’ll meet and greet the dogs on your team before being pulled along the frosty trails by these canines. Return to Banff for the night – a group dinner in town may be on the cards. If you wish for additional excursions during your time in Canmore, pick from the following optional activities and contact us for current excursion pricing.

                                                                      Included Activities:
                                                                                      • Canmore - Grotto Canyon Guided Icewalk
                                                                                      Optional Activities:
                                                                                        • Canmore - Dog-sledding
                                                                                        • Canmore - Fat Biking Tour
                                                                                        • Canmore - Cross-Country Skiing

                                                                                        Day 11: Calgary, Alberta

                                                                                        Enjoy breakfast at the lodge before a drive back to Calgary (approximately 1.5 hours). Your trip will end at Calgary International Airport, the arrival time depends on each group however If you decide to fly out this day, please don't book a flight before 3 pm. Drop off in Calgary city can be arranged, please discuss this with your Trip Leader.

                                                                                        Accommodations

                                                                                        Metterra Hotel on Whyte

                                                                                        Metterra Hotel on Whyte
                                                                                        Metterra Hotel on Whyte
                                                                                        Reception Area

                                                                                        Dates & Prices

                                                                                        My Preferred Start Date

                                                                                        Per person starting at
                                                                                        $5,545
                                                                                        Rates are dynamic and fluctuate based on capacity. Contact us for a specific quote.

                                                                                        Notes

                                                                                        Select a Date
                                                                                        A single supplement is available if you?d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement applies to all nights of your trip and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information
                                                                                        Included
                                                                                        • 10 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches
                                                                                        • 10 Nights Accommodations
                                                                                        • 11 Days Locally Hosted Guide Service
                                                                                        • Accommodations as listed
                                                                                        • Ground transportation as listed
                                                                                        • Activities as listed
                                                                                        • Meals as listed
                                                                                        • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
                                                                                        Excluded
                                                                                        • Gratuities
                                                                                        • Travel Insurance
                                                                                        • Personal Expenses
                                                                                        • Flight costs (please request a quote)
                                                                                        • Additional excursions during free time
                                                                                        • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
                                                                                        • For those traveling internationally with Intrepid: emergency evacuation and medical insurance are mandatory, and comprehensive travel insurance is strongly recommended. See here for more details

                                                                                        Map

                                                                                        When to Go

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                                                                                        Nov
                                                                                        Dec
                                                                                        Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.
                                                                                        Typically not offered during this period because of weather conditions.

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                                                                                        Kate was great to work with in the planning stage. She was prompt, helpful, and efficient. Our tour guide, Edwin, was knowledgeable and passionate. We were very happy to have traveled with Adventure Life, it made the trip easy and a true pleasure. We could concentrate on enjoying the experience rather than the details of travel.
                                                                                        Lisa Bridge

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