calgary to jasper

Old Jan 12th, 2006, 08:34 PM
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calgary to jasper

please advise me of travel from my flight into calgary, and then renting a car for drive to jasper...in July 06. how long will it take..is it a scenic drive..do i go through banff...best places to stay??? Best restaurants/things not to miss in the area. My family and I will be there for the first time, obviously, for 1 week. I would appreciate a lot of input and thank you!!!
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Old Jan 12th, 2006, 08:41 PM
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I think a look at a good map is strongly indicated here. The province of Alberta supplies an excellent one for free.

Just give Travel Alberta a call at
800.252.3782

The friendly folks there have never steered me wrong. You will get lots of info.

Personally, I recommend going by Lake Louise and then up the Icefields Parkway.
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Old Jan 13th, 2006, 10:47 PM
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I live in Calgary and the drive from Calgary, though Banff and Lake Louise, to Jasper is one of the most scenic in the world! It is approximately 5 hours (not including all of the stopping you will surely want to do!).

Along the way, be sure to:

- have a drink/lunch/snack at the Banff Springs Hotel - spectacular building and views

- visit the Banff Hot Springs

- take a hike around Lake Louise

- visit the Columbia Ice Fields - very cool in the summer!

Shayne
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 08:44 AM
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Thank you so much for the insight. We are considering driving to Banff/Lake Louise and overnighting there. Do you have any recommendations other then the Banff Springs...would like a very nice place to consider as an option?
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 03:11 PM
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We did the trip in Sep 2002 from Calgary.
It was really spectacular for the mountain scenery and the wildlife we could see ! You are in a bear country !! One week is a limited time but you may have a great overview of the Canadian Rockies Nat Parks.
Banff is usually the first stop as base for visiting Lake Louise. There are some good trails to do around the lake and also upper trails with a really nice view of the lake from above !
In the same day I would strongly recommend to see also the nearby lake Morraine. While lake Louise was blue, then lake Morraine was green so we had these two colour variations ! We got a canoe on lake Morraine.
On the way back from Lake Morraine to Banff we saw a brown bear along the road eating berries and we stopped the car to see him so close !!
Then you will proceede to Jasper along one of the most beautiful highway in North America: the Icefield Parkway.
Banff to Jasper is about 180 miles so I suggest to leave early from Banff as the trip deserves a lot of stops for scenery pictures and some easy trails if you want.
Do not miss the stop at Peyto Lake.
I then took the same picture from the lookout point that I had found in a
National Geographich Traveler magazine ! It is fantastic !
Another stop not to miss is at Columbia Icefield. They can drive you ON the Icefileld with special coaches !
Once based in Jasper do not miss the scenic drive to Maligne Lake and take the boat tour. That spot is almost on every postcard in Alberta !
We saw another brown bear along our way.
We also saw a lot of elks, two coyotes, caribous and our two kids were very excited for that !

We decided to split the trip between Banff and Jasper in two parts with an overnight inbetween on both ways because of the many stops we did but I do not remember the name of the lodge. It is about at half way between Banff and Jasper. Try to surf the web for accomodation in Banff/Jasper Nat Parks.

You will love this trip, although a bit too short !
After that experience we were inspired to have another trip to Alaska !! and we did it last summer !


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Old Jan 15th, 2006, 12:06 PM
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Other high end options in Banff include the Rimrock resort (a few minutes out of town, on the road to the hot springs) and Buffalo Mountain Lodge (on Tunnel Mountain, again a few minutes out of town). The Chateau Lake Louise and the Post Hotel are high end options in Lake Louise.
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Old Jan 15th, 2006, 04:28 PM
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Fabio/Pixie..thank you.Fabio,we also did Alaska last summer. I broke my ankle on top of the mtn. 3rd day of trip..bummer!! I have taken lots of notes. Agreed, wish we could stay a month.Any restaurants you would say are a must do??? Thanks again...
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Old Jan 16th, 2006, 11:13 AM
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another option if you want to drive directly to jasper and your flight gets in early to mid day - leave the airport and take highway 2 north towards red deer (1 1/2 hours). then take highway 11 west towards rocky mountain house. this will end at highway 93 which is the banff/jasper highway. turn right and it will take you into jasper.
then when you want to go back to banff, you will take highway 93 again but you'll see the whole road on the way back. just gives you a bit of variety so your not travelling the same route both directions.
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Old Jan 16th, 2006, 12:17 PM
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visormon

sorry but cannot help with restaurants since it's now more than 3 years ago and food was not one of our priorities. Our 2 young kids do not each very much so meal times were not very memorable !
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Old Jan 16th, 2006, 02:41 PM
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I am not really a "foodie" per say, but I like Giorggio's in Banff (Italian) and the Italian restaurant (can't remember the name) in the Banff Springs. The fondue restaurant in the Chateau Lake Louise is also excellent.
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Old Jan 17th, 2006, 09:56 AM
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I'd recommend the fondue restaurant as well at the Fairmont Lake Louise. Fun, different atmosphere. Make sure you make reservations ahead. We also had dinner at the Post Hotel in Lake Louise which was good. Canadian Rockies has awesome scenery, one of my best trips!! Get a good travel book and don't miss all the beautiful lakes! Have fun..
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Old Jan 18th, 2006, 07:59 PM
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We went from Calgary to Banff and Jasper last summer. LOTS of details in our (extremely long......) trip report that might be useful to you (can't hurt to see). Just click on my name above (nkh) and the report should show up. It gives, among other things, details about the drive from Calgary - Jasper, some restaurant info and activities that we did. Hopefully some of it will help.

Have a great trip.
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Old Jan 19th, 2006, 05:13 PM
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nkh...thank you for posting such a eloquent trip report. Taking your time to refect upon your experiences has really helped me plan our adventure...thanku!!!
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Old Jan 21st, 2006, 05:44 PM
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We traveled with a 15 year old girl last summer, Calgary to Banff to Jasper. We were so inspired by the glaciers we're doing SE Alaska this summer. Check out my trip report by clicking my name.
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