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Have 7 days to travel in British Columbia

Have 7 days to travel in British Columbia

Old May 31st, 2015, 07:01 PM
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Have 7 days to travel in British Columbia

Hi,
We are going to spend our holidays driving via rental car from Vancouver to Calgary for 7 days starting from 4 July (leaving Vancouver) until 10 July 2015 (arriving at Calgary). We would like to visit Jasper, Lake Louise, Banff and other interesting places along the way. On 11th July, we fly off to Toronto. This is the our first time in Canada.

Our interest is in sightseeing + little bit of hiking. Please suggest where we should spend each night and places to visit + the routdes to take to get to these places.

Thank you,
Kittiwat
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Old May 31st, 2015, 07:10 PM
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Hi, forgot to mention that we are 2 adults in our late fifties. We have to be in Calgary by the evening of 10th July as we have to catch a flight to Toronto the next moring. Thank you.
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Old Jun 1st, 2015, 04:18 AM
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i would go from vancouver to penticton for 2 nights
then onto jasper for 2 nights
then onto banff for 3 nights
i've heard that jasper accommodations are getting hard to find now so you might want to check on that first.
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Old Jun 1st, 2015, 10:37 AM
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We are planning a similar trip the last week of August, but flying in and out of Calgary. I wondered why you are picking 2 nights for Jasper and 3 for Banff because we too are trying to decide on how many nights in each area. We will be adding Lake Louise or Lake Moraine for a night or two. We are interested in day hiking (5-8 hour roundtrip depending on terrain) at each stop, and also have to schedule a 30th anniversary dinner somewhere special on Aug. 31. Thanks for letting me tag along on this thread...
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Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 09:15 AM
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As a general rule of thumb, I suggest 3-5 nights in the Banff/Lake Louise area and 2-3 nights in Jasper.

Jasper is more of a hiking/outdoors area with indoor activities limited to a couple of small museums and the rec centre. The townsite is smaller with lots of great hiking trails in the area and the Miette Hot Spring about 45-60 minutes away.

Banff/Lake Louise/Canmore is a bigger, more bustling area, and both Banff/Canmore have a lot more in terms of restaurants, shops, indoor activities etc.

For a special dinner, there are lots of options in Banff and any of the Fairmont properties have great restaurants. However, it seems to be very difficult to impossible to get set reservations for the Fairmonts (Jasper Park Lodge, Chateau Lake Louise, Banff Springs) unless you are staying at the hotel. Otherwise you go on a waitlist and are notified on the day of.

With that in mind, and if you like hiking, you might consider - rather than Lake Louise or Moraine Lake - staying at the Emerald Lake Lodge. You have direct access to the trails around Emerald Lake and easy drive to trails like the Iceline. The rooms are in cabins overlooking the lakes, each with wood burning fire, and the food is excellent. Other options include Cathedral Mountain Lodge and Bear Creek Chalets.

If you are into hiking, then I could certainly see diving your time more evenly. Some of the hikes I really enjoy in the areas:

Jasper:
Mt. Robson/Berg Lake area (very long day hike, but you can do a more reasonable day hike to Whitehorn or a bit farther)

Edith Cavell area - beautiful
Wilcox Pass - right at the Banff/Jasper NP boucndary, offering great views of the Athabasca Glacier and opportunities for scrambling and exploring the pass
Maligne Lake - a variety of trails that go up from/near the lake

Banff/Lake Louise

Lake Louise - spend a day hiking to both teahouses. There are many ways to do this as a big loop with side trips to Big and/or Little Beehive.

Bow Glacier Falls - along the Icefields Parkway. Very fit hikers can do a long day trip up to the Bow Hut area to get a closer view of the glacier (but do NOT go on it). Hut facilities are for paying guests only (other than the outhouse), but you can picnic outside.

Moraine Lake - gorgeous area, although you must be in (and stay in) a tight group of at least 4 people to hike beyond the lake. Generally it's easy to meet up with other folks at the trailhead. You can hike up to Larch Valley, and then to Sentinel Pass for great views.

I have also heard that people are finding it an increasing challenge to find accommodations in Jasper for this summer. So I would check on that first - your best bet may be to contact PHAs (Private Home Accommodations) to see what availability they have.

I am not as familiar with the trails around Banff, but you can check out the Parks Canada website: http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/pn-np/ab/ban...ing/banff.aspx
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Old Jun 3rd, 2015, 09:43 AM
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Thank you for all that information!!
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