A woman sat by Lake Louise. Right: A woman paddleboarding at Two Jack Lake.

A woman sat by Lake Louise. Right: A woman paddleboarding at Two Jack Lake.

We can all agree the Rocky Mountains deserve a spot on every Canadian bucket list but it can be hard to determine what you need to do and see while you're there.

We've rounded up a list of things to see in Banff and nearby that are basically a rite of passage for visiting the area.

If you've checked off all or most of these places on your list, you can pride yourself on knowing that you've hit up the most iconic spots around.

The Banff Springs Hotel

Address: 405 Spray Ave., Banff, AB

Why You Need To Go: The majestic Banff Springs Hotel is a destination in its own right. From the castle-like exterior to the endlessly elegant interior, the place is bursting with history and charm. There are also tons of places to eat and drink within.

Peyto Lake

Address: 43 km northwest of Lake Louise, AB

Why You Need To Go: Here we have one of Banff National Park's breathtaking turquoise lakes. Located along the Icefields Parkway, this truly unbeatable lookout is a must-see for everyone visiting the Rockies.

Banff Upper Hot Springs

Address: 1 Mountain Ave., Banff, AB

Why You Need To Go: One of the coolest things about Banff is its naturally occurring hot springs. You can take a break from hiking and take in a whole new view of Banff from above. Look across at Mount Rundle and soak the day away.

Lake Louise

Address: Lake Louise, AB

Why You Need To Go: Lake Louise is probably the most iconic Banff landmark and for a good reason. The stunning, bright-blue water is a sight to behold, and whether you want to rent a canoe or go hiking around the lake, there's nothing but activities to keep you busy.

Sulphur Mountain Gondola

Address: 100 Mountain Ave., Banff, AB

Why You Need To Go: You can ride an enchanting gondola over Banff and up to the top of Sulpher Mountain. There you will find beautiful views, a boardwalk and even a restaurant.

Moraine Lake

Address: 14 km outside of Lake Louise, AB

Why You Need To Go: Located in The Valley of Ten Peaks, this jaw-dropping lake needs to be on everyone's bucket list. Surrounded by beautiful hikes and viewpoints, you really shouldn't miss it.

Two Jack Lake

Address: 10-kilometres outside of Banff, AB.

Why You Need To Go: Just outside of Banff town, Two Jack Lake is super peaceful and has an incredible view of Mount Rundle. It's also one of the best places to catch a sunrise or sunset with no hiking involved.


The Icefields Parkway 

Address: Highway 93, AB

Why You Need To Go: A visit to Banff or Alberta, in general, should absolutely include a drive along the Icefields Parkway between Banff and Jasper. Rated as one of the top drives in the world, buckle up and get ready for some unforgettable scenery.

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