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Help me plan trip to Candadian Rockies and Vancouver

Help me plan trip to Candadian Rockies and Vancouver

Jun 17th, 2005, 02:51 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 7
Help me plan trip to Candadian Rockies and Vancouver

My husband and I are flying from New York to Calgary and are planning to spend 2 nights in Banff, 2 nights in Lake Louise, 2 nights in Jasper and then work in Vancouver and possibly Victoria for 3 nights. We are on a budget and need help with finding inexpensive hotels with charm. They don't need to be 4 star but we don't want a dump. Any suggestions??
doodles is offline  
Jun 19th, 2005, 06:15 AM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,477
We visited this area last September and fell in love with it. We had skiied here many years ago and always wanted to return.
We have not visited Vancouver or Victoria but it is a popular area, so you will get some suggestions from others.
The places that are regularly recommended on the board may be more expensive than you are wanting to pay. I would suggest you look at www.discoverbanff.com and www.discoverjasper.com and find a few motels that may be in your price range---then ask if anyone can recommend it.

When considering Lake Louise and Banff, you will have more choices in budget accommodations in Banff. You can easily access Lake Louise from Banff---it's a lovely drive---Maybe 45 minutes??(something like that). I have never stayed in a hostel, but have heard that the Lake Louise Hostel is a deluxe hostel--very nice.
Jasper also has many home accommodations. That may work for you.
Good luck. Remember prices are listed in Canadian dollars and the taxes on your room are refundable when you fill out the form at the airport.
LindainOhio is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2005, 11:56 AM
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 62
Try Patricia Lake Bunglaow in Jasper at $153 a night -the have kitchens so this could help with budget. Fabulous location 10 minutes out of town. On lake and quite picturesque.
biggy47 is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2005, 12:32 PM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 21
we plan to visit Vancouver 7/30 - 8/3, driving from Seattle. Any suggestion on whether we should stay in downtown hotel or suburb? What's the parking situation in the area? Do they charge parking everywhere as in Seattle?
vanillabean is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2005, 01:09 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,501
Hello doodles,

It is ambitious to cover the Rockies and the west coast in 9 nights. However, if you are adamant about doing it, you could try this:

Day 1 - Land in Calgary. Drive two hours to Banff.

Day 2 - Drive along the Bow Valley Parkway (Hwy #1A) and walk into Johnston Canyon. Do this first thing in the morning, because the parking lot of this popular spot fills up. Return to Banff and explore the town. Consider a ride on the Sulphur Mountain Gondola. Maybe visit Lake Minnewanka.

You have the option of moving on to Lake Louise for this night or spending a 2nd night in Banff. Banff has more people, restaurants, shops. Lake Louise is quieter, more relaxing, closer to nature.

Day 3 - Drive to Moraine Lake. Again, do this first thing to secure a spot in the busy parking lot. Afterwards visit the lake of Lake Louise (which is 3 miles from the village of Lake Louise). Then drive west into Yoho National Park and see Emerald Lake and Takakkaw Falls. Overnight in Lake Louise.

Day 4 - Drive the Icefields Parkway to Jasper. Stop en route to see Peyto Lake, Sunwapta Falls and Athabasca Falls. Consider a Snocoach ride on the Athabasca Glacier in the Columbia Icefields. Overnight in Jasper.

Day 5 - Explore Jasper's environs (Tramway up Whistler's Mountain or a visit to Mount Edith Cavell / Angel Glacier, a walk in Maligne Canyon, a drive to Maligne Lake and maybe a cruise across the lake to Spirit Island)

Day 6 - Drive to Vancouver via Kamloops and Hope. This is a long drive. It's 9 hours, not counting stops. The one thing in your favour is that you gain an hour when you cross from the Mountain Time Zone to the Pacific Time Zone a short distance west of Jasper.

Day 7 - Explore downtown Vancouver (Stanley Park, Robson Street, Yaletown, Granville Island Market).

Day 8 - Day trip to Victoria. This makes for a long day, which is why I've suggested placing it in the middle of your Vancouver stay. It's not so nice to come back from an extended outing and then still have to pack for your onward journey.

Day 9 - Cross Burrard Inlet to the North Shore. Visit one of the two canyons that have suspension bridges in North Vancouver. Better advertised Capilano Canyon charges a fee, and lesser known Lynn Canyon is free. Take the SkyRide up Grouse Mountain. Drive to Horseshoe Bay in West Vancouver.

Day 10 - Fly home.

Hope that helps.
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2005, 01:24 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,501
Hello vanillabean,

Where you should stay depends to a large extent on your budget. If you can afford to do so, it really is nice to stay downtown. But, yes, downtown hotels do charge for parking.

I myself have stayed in downtown Vancouver only a couple of times. On all of my other visits there I have stayed with friends in a variety of places, usually in North Vancouver.

If you are looking for a reasonably priced property that will not charge you for parking, you could even consider a place in Burnaby, provided it's close to the SkyTrain. If you're staying in Burnaby and day tripping into the downtown core, you may not want to go by car, as you'll have to pay for casual parking in most parts of downtown.

Here is the trip planning page of TransLink, Vancouver's public transportation system.


You plug in your point of origin and your desired destination, and the web site tells you which train, bus or ferry to catch, and where to make connections.

Sometimes people who give advice on travel discussion boards (myself included) promote the kind of vacation that they like to take and/or can afford to take. They don't always do a good job of listening to the wants and needs of the person who has posed a question.

So, to recap my position, yes, it is lovely to be able to stay downtown, but staying downtown is not a make or break issue, in my opinion.
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2005, 01:30 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,501
Oops, doodles, I failed to follow my own advice that I articulated in my message to vanillabean. I've just noticed that you're on a budget. In that case I should warn you that Lake Louise tends to be expensive. If budget is a strong consideration, you can use Canmore or Banff as your base for seeing the Banff - Lake Louise - Yoho corridor. It is not strictly speaking necessary to transfer from Banff to Lake Louise.

In order for us to recommend accommodation it would help us if you could state a dollar range (and clarify whether you're using US or Canadian dollars). There is such a range between not 4 star and not a dump that I find myself unable to mention a property based on the guidelines you've provided.
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Jul 4th, 2005, 12:29 AM
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 430
Banff, Lake Louise and Jasper are quite expensive, if your are on budget. Avoid the hotels and look for self contained cabins or stay in hostels & alpine huts.

It is also less expensive, to take an accommodation outside the national park border (Hinton, Canmore, Golden).

tom22 is offline  

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