Banff/Lake Louise/Jasper Honeymoon

Feb 19th, 2004, 05:11 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 1
Banff/Lake Louise/Jasper Honeymoon

Hi everyone,

My fiance and I are planning a honeymoon for the Canadian Rockies in late August. Neither of us has been there before, and we are very excited!

We are considering going from Lake Louise to Jasper to Banff, with the following accomodations:

1 night: Chateau Lake Louise, Lakeside room
2 nights: Emerald Lake Lodge, Superior room
2 nights: Jasper Park Lodge, Junior suite lakeside
2 nights: Buffalo Mountain Lodge, Premier room

I am a little worried, however, about changing hotels so often, and am thinking of skipping Jasper and spending an extra night at both Emerald Lake and Buffalo Mountain (this would also save over US$500). But I have also read on these message boards that the drive up to Jasper is not to be missed! Does anyone have any thoughts/suggestions? Do you think that all of these hotels/room categories are worth it?

Lisa_in_Ithaca is offline  
Feb 19th, 2004, 07:01 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,501
Hi Lisa,

Weddings are exciting but very busy, so I recommend a relaxing honeymoon.

How about this?

Fly into Edmonton, spend 3 nights in Jasper, drive south along the Icefields Parkway, spend 4 nights at one of the more southerly destinations (Emerald Lake, Lake Louise or Banff), drive to Calgary, and fly out of Calgary.

I haven't stayed at Jasper Park Lodge or Emerald Lake Lodge, but have heard they're nice. Suggest you do a word search here at Fodors, and read old discussion threads about them. Other Fodorites may very well jump in here and comment too.

While Chateau Lake Louise is beautifully situated and has been a fabulous hotel in its time, I've heard comments to the effect that it's going through the wobblies at the moment. (Suggest again that you read old discussion threads.) I've heard that Lake Louise's Post Hotel is excellent (but have not stayed there myself.)

In the case of Buffalo Mountain Lodge I once again am unable to help you, as I haven't stayed there. I have seen discussion threads about it, however, so I know there is information floating around.

Best of luck.
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Feb 19th, 2004, 09:32 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,465
I knew that Judy would come through for you Lisa !! Her advice is very good.

I too would suggest staying at one location in the Banff/Lake Louise/ Emerald Lake area instead of moving around from place to place.
Banff is furthest east, Lake Louise is approximately 45 minutes (driving) to the northwest, and Emerald Lake is to the west of that (about 25 miles give or take - hope someone will be able to give you a more accurate distance). Lake Louise would be the ideal spot for visiting all three because it is in the middle.

The way you have it planned - a total of 5 nights in the Banff-Lake Louise - Emerald Lake areas and 2 nights in Jasper sounds perfect. Your choice of accommodation is also very good. But to avoid packing and unpacking so often, choose Lake Louise for all 5 nights (actually Post Hotel in Lake Louise is very very nice and has an excellent dining room). . . or, if you have your heart set on Emerald lake, spend 2 nights there after spending 3 nights at Buffalo Mountain Lodge in Banff.

But don't skip the drive to Jasper on the Icefield Parkway - it will be the scenic highlight of your trip!!

Judy's idea of flying in to Edmonton and driving to Jasper, then continiung as per plan to Lake Louise, Emerald Lake, Banff, and at the end flying out of Calgary makes most efficient use of your time (you'll be driving in a big arc, like a lopsided letter "C").

Congrats and good luck with your plans!!

Borealis is offline  
Feb 20th, 2004, 04:59 PM
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Posts: 265
I have stayed in Lake Louise at the Post Hotel and it is lovely. We visited Emerald Lake while we were in the area and thought it was beautiful but would have been too remote for us. Lake Lousie was more central to Lake Morane, Yoho, etc. I would not stay at the Chateau Lake Louise. It is too much of a tourist attraction with buses in and out all day. We stopped there after a hike to the teahouse and could not wait to leave.

I agree that the Icefields Parkway should not be missed. We stayed in a hotel in the town of Jasper that was much more reasonable than the Lodge. We had dinner at the Lodge and it was lovely but we were happy enough in our loft style suite downtown. I think the hotel was called the Jasper Inn.

In Banff we stayed at the Rimrock Resort. It is higher on the mountain with a fantastic view of the valley. I'm sure many will disagree but I find the older Canadian Pacific Hotels nicer to look at than to stay in.

detraveler is offline  
Feb 25th, 2004, 01:23 PM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 11
Congratulations! My husband and I honeymooned there and could not have asked for a more beautiful and wonderful place. I think you should not miss the icefields parkway - it is spectacular. We stayed at three different places and did not find it too tiring. The drives in between were great and it was nice staying in three great places.

We stayed at the Pyramid Lake Resort in Jasper. The staff there was wonderful. When they found out it was our honeymoon they upgraded our room and treated us to free appetizers and champagne. I found the resort charming and in a beautiful location. I really enjoyed the town of Jasper and recommend keeping it in your itinerary. We stayed lakeside at Chateau Lake Louise ... location, location, location. The hotel is lovely and it wasn't overly crowded when we were there. I suspect it is bad during the summer, but it is such a fabulous location. Our final nights were at the Rimrock in Banff. Another great location up on the side of a mountain. It is a beautiful hotel with large spacious rooms (unlike Chateau Lake Louise). We enjoyed the lobby area bar and the staff and spa were nice too. I believe we had dinner at the Buffalo Mountain Lodge and it was very nice.

Good luck with your planning and I hope your trip is as fabulous as ours was.
bebeblanc is offline  
Mar 10th, 2004, 01:21 PM
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Lisa, just to let you know, I was very disappointed with Emerald Lake both the lodge and the lake. It was VERY busy an over-run, also the service at Cilantros was bad. I would skip it.
Mar 10th, 2004, 05:46 PM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 258
If you are looking for a real expression of Banff/Lake Louise, the Chateau Lake Louise isn't it. When I was there this past summer, it reminded me of something out of Disney World - it looked really fake and out of place and was packed with tourists. If you are in the area, definitely stop by for a drink or tea just to see what the fuss is about(although in high season you are not technically allowed to do so if you aren't staying there, but really, how would they know? Just ignore all their signs like I did...) but I don't recommend spending the money to stay there. If you have the money, The Post Hotel which is right nearby and vastly superior is a much better place to spend it.

If you want to stay at a much more romantic and grand old Canadian hotel, the Fairmont Banff Springs is a better choice and it has an amazing spa - I'm sure they have some honeymoon packages.

I also second the suggestion that you not stay at JPL unless money is no object. You can always go to the bar (which is a lovely log-cabin style place) or one of the many restaurants but the rooms and the hotel itself as a place to actually stay is nothing to write home about.

Finally, before you leave Calgary, make sure you have dinner at the River Cafe, which is located on an island, right near the market district (yes, even the Prairies have rivers...). It has some of the top food in Canada in a very romantic and laid back setting. The Sheraton Suites Eau Claire in Calgary is a great place to stay and is just nearby.
Cat123 is offline  
Mar 10th, 2004, 06:08 PM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 14,100
Ditto the advice on the Post Hotel. Much more appealing than the Lake Louise hotel, which is home to a million tour groups. Go have a drink, enjoy the view and retreat to real luxe at the Post. For an extraordinary Rockies experience try Lake O'Hara Lodge. Incredible hiking, views, privacy and food. I liked Emerald Lake but it has much more limited hiking than O'Hara and lots of tour crowds during the day. Lake O'Hara is an unforgettable experience.
cmcfong is offline  
Mar 11th, 2004, 05:16 AM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 5
In Jasper I would avoid the Jasper Park Lodge and go for one of the smaller cabin resorts around the town for a more personal expereince. You won't get some of the ammenities of the lodge, but I found them to be over priced. Try either Alpine Village or Patricia Lake Bungalows for a real romantic treat.
ghutton is offline  
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