Banff, Lake Louise, Jasper, Vancouver

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Mar 14th, 2012, 04:05 AM
  #1
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Banff, Lake Louise, Jasper, Vancouver

Hi,

We (my husband a 5-year kid) are planning to visit these places for the first time in May. I set an itinerary based on the the other posts and think that three full days in each place are enough. What do ou think?
Which places do you recommend to visit and stay in our way Jasper- Vancouver?
Also would appreciate 3-star hotel recommendations, preferably with kitchen appliances.

Thanks.
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Mar 14th, 2012, 09:21 AM
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Are you sure you meant May. I expect there will be a fair amount of snow in Banff/Lake Louise.
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Mar 14th, 2012, 01:32 PM
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Consider riding the ViaRail Canadian in the Sleeper or Sleeper Touring Class from Vancouver to Jasper. If you didn't want to rent a car in Jasper, Brewster has good bus tours. The Brewster ticket counter is in the east half of the ViaRail station.
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Mar 14th, 2012, 02:38 PM
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I'd bypass driving from Vancouver - Banff with a 3year and either fly or just restrict yourself to one area - Vancouver or the Canadian Rockies. One week in either area is a good guideline time required.

Banff/Lake Louise are only 45 mins apart. With more accommodations available in Banff (especially in the 3 star and like you have requested kitchen/ettes), I'd eliminate 1x checkin/out and just base yourself in Banff for the 6 nights and explore from there.

Check out www.bestofbanff.com, www.banffinfo.com for hotel options and www.banfftours.com for sightseeing and activity options.
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Mar 14th, 2012, 02:44 PM
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Dependant on when you come in May there most likely will be some snow - really more at higher elevations. Early May there is also skiing. If you are coming later in May there are definately some nice light hikes (walks to do in the Mountains - around Lake Louise, along the Bow River). In Banff the Gondola is a nice tourist attraction and weather dependant other options will open up too. If you are thinking three days in each of these locations that is certainly enough time to get a good preview of each location. Banff has many great hotels in town, ones with kitchens that I would suggest would the The Fox Hotel, Tunnel Mountain, Hidden Ridge and Douglas Fir...the last three are situated on Tunnel Mountain so a short drive to downtown Banff.
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Mar 14th, 2012, 04:24 PM
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You are more likely to see snow instead of spring flowers.
http://www.skimarmot.com/
Looks like the people at Marmot are having fun this year.
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Mar 15th, 2012, 02:57 AM
  #7
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I appreciate all the replies. Will consider your suggestions and make some changes in our plan. Could you tell me which is best month to visit the Canadian Rocks?

Thanks again.
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Mar 15th, 2012, 04:40 PM
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I was in Banff for christmas this year. We stayed at the Fairmont Banff Springs. It was breath taking. It is quite expensive to stay at the castle but there are many nice places in banff for example The Fox Hotel is really nice. If you decide not to stay the the Fairmont I suggest you go for a visit because it is sooo worth it
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Mar 16th, 2012, 09:57 AM
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Banff can get crowded in the summer. We have visited in March to ski and love to visit in September to hike. May would be a bit too snowy and if warmer, the trails would definitely be muddy. I would think some of the lakes might still have ice on them. I would also want to visit when the road to Moraine Lake was open, which I think is usually the beginning of June.

I think the end of August and the first couple weeks in September are perfect times to visit. Hotel rates start dropping the middle of September. I would never pass up a chance to visit at other times in the summer though.

We did have some snow one night, the first week of September. It made the trail to Peyto Lake absolutely beautiful. The trees were covered with snow and just sparkled in the sunshine. The snow melted during the day.
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Mar 16th, 2012, 02:19 PM
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First week of September after the long weekend would see best prices and half decent weather. Summer months are expensive, and crowded.

Midori, you did not say where you are starting and ending your trip, and if you are driving or flying. A little bit more information would be helpful.

Canmore is only minutes away form the park gate, you will typically get better deals for hotel and food there than inside Banff. For hotels, you pay similar prices but better quality.

A lot of people will drive from Banff to Lake Louise, and then Lake Louise to Jasper (or vice versa) but a lot of people did not have enough time planned for all the side trips in between.

Conisder a night at the Saskatchewan crossing. Otherwise, if you use a "home base", you will be doing a lot of driving back and forth, not that it is a bad thing as the secenery is beautiful.

The most "under-rated" area of the Canadaian Rockies is the Waterton National Park. By far, I enjoyed the town site of Waterton and the hiking trails of the surrounding area more so than Banff, Lake Louise & Jasper.

As to snow, it can snow anytime of the year. I have experienced snow fall in June, July and August; more so in August than the other 2 months.
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