Sign Up
Newsletter Signup
Free Fodor's Newsletter

Subscribe today for weekly travel inspiration, tips, and special offers.

Passport: Your weekly travel wrap-up
Today's Departure: Your daily dose of travel inspiration

Banff National Park Sights

Icefields Parkway

  • Scenic Drive/Tour
  • Fodor's Choice
  • Icefields Parkway, Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

    BGSmith / Shutterstock

Updated 10/21/2013

Fodor's Review

Powerfully rugged mountain scenery, glaciers, waterfalls and icefalls, and wildlife: the Icefields Parkway reveals all of these and more as it snakes its way along 230 km (143 miles) connecting Banff National Park with Jasper National Park. It is an absolute highlight of the Canadian Rockies.

There aren't any gas stations along the route, so be sure to check the gas gauge before setting out. Although you could drive this winding road in three to four hours, it's more likely to be a full-day trip when you add in stops. The road rises to near the tree line at several points, and the weather can be chilly and unsettled at these high elevations, even in midsummer, so it's a good idea to bring warm clothing along.

Elk, moose, deer, and bighorn sheep are fairly common along this route, and occasionally you can see bears and mountain goats. In summer, alpine wildflowers carpet Bow Pass and Sunwapta Pass.

The most dramatic scenery is in the north end of Banff National Park

and the south end of Jasper National Park, where ice fields and glaciers become common on the high mountains flanking the route (icefields are massive reservoirs of ice; glaciers are the slow-moving rivers of ice that flow from the icefields). Scenic overlooks and signposted hiking trails abound along the route.

Read More


What's Nearby

  • Restaurants
  • Sights
  • Hotels

See all sights in Banff National Park

Add Your Own Review

When did you go?

Minimum 200 character count

How many stars would you give?




Don't Miss



No Thanks

Love To Travel?

Get FREE e-mail communications from Fodor's Travel, covering must-see travel destinations, expert trip planning advice, and travel inspiration to fuel your passion.

How we use your email

Thank You

Now sit back, relax, and check your inbox to start planning your next travel adventure.

Please tell us more about the type of travel you're interested in. Check all that apply.