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The Canadian Rockies form a landscape like no other, with snow-capped mountains, wild forested trails, icefields three times larger than Paris and bright blue glacial lakes. Whatever you're looking for, whether it's stunning hikes, exhilarating drives or panoramic views over soaring peaks and verdant valleys… you'll find it here.
To help your itinerary planning, here are our top picks of unmissable highlights from the Canadian Rockies and the area's most scenic routes. So buckle up, and let's hit the road.
Highlights of the Canadian Rockies for your motorhome adventure
Banff National Park
Many travellers enter the Rocky Mountains using the city of Calgary as a starting point. While you're there, there's an opportunity (if you time your trip right) to visit the world-famous Calgary Stampede. It's also just 90 minutes drive from the quaint mountain town of Banff…
Banff National Park is one of the most visited spots in the Canadian Rockies and for good reason. Of course, you can expect panoramic mountain views and serene glacial lakes, but it also boasts some pretty unique geology in Banff itself. Enjoy a gondola ride up Sulphur Mountain or savour a dip in the Banff Upper Hot Springs (complete with a preserved 1930s bath house and panoramic views of the Rockies).
While there's almost too much to mention in this stunning area, the Bow Valley Parkway should also be high on your list. It's an awe-inspiring 50 kilometres of road that many people describe as a mini-version of the Icefields Parkway. The Johnston Canyon waterfalls (accessible via a manageable 6-kilometre hike) are one of the most unforgettable stops on the route.
Lake Louise and the surrounding area
Head 60 kilometres southwest of Banff, and you'll arrive at the shores of Lake Louise. Overlooked by a stately Chateau, plenty of rambling trails are nearby, and activities like paddle boarding, fishing and kayaking are available on the lake. You could also embark on a beautiful 4-kilometre lakeside stroll, offering fantastic views of the surrounding peaks.
If you're feeling more energetic, take a longer (11 kilometre) hike up to the stunning "Plane of the Six Glaciers" – which will take around 4 hours for a return trip.
As well as Lake Louise, the iconic Lake Moraine is nearby – perhaps one of the most famous and photographed lakes in the Canadian Rockies. There's an incredible drive from Lake Louise that's perfect for motorhome road trippers and some fantastic hikes (such as the Larch Tree Valley route) once you get there.
As if all that wasn't enough, the delights of Yoho National Park are also just a short drive away. This national park is one of the most popular holiday spots in the Rockies and a magical location for keen ramblers.
In fact, "Yoho" is the Cree people's word for "awe",… and it doesn't disappoint. Don't miss the half-day hike to Takakkaw Falls, the photogenic Emerald Lake, or the remote Lake O'Hara. If Lake O'Hara is on your list, make sure to pre-book, as it's one of the most sought-after attractions in the park.
At Lake Louise, you're ideally placed to begin your journey along the Icefields Parkway (93N). This is an unmissable drive for anyone visiting the Canadian Rockies. As a bonus, the 230-kilometre-long road also connects Lake Louise with Jasper National Park – another highlight for Rockies' motorhome adventures.
On the Icefields Parkway, you'll drive past icy blue glacial lakes, soaring mountain peaks and views of a lifetime. Plenty of stopping points along the route also allow you to practise your photography skills.
Some of the Icefields highlights include the Columbia Icefield (where you can explore the Athabasca Glacier and the Columbia Icefield Skywalk), the thundering Athabasca and Sunwapta Waterfalls and Peyto Lake. There's even a "weeping wall" at Cirrus Mountain, which looks like the mountainside is crying a river of tears. Like much of the Canadian Rockies, it has to be seen to be believed….
Jasper National Park
After winding your way along the Icefields Parkway, you'll come to the scenic town of Jasper and Jasper National Park. Known for its abundant wildlife and outstanding natural beauty, it's also the world's second-largest dark sky preserve (making it a perfect location for budding stargazers).
Spanning over 11,000 square kilometres, Jasper is the largest national park in the Rockies.
A boat trip on Maligne Lake is one of the park's most spectacular yet peaceful activities. Cruise to the beautiful Spirit Island, where rental kayaks, canoes and paddleboards let you enjoy the lake up close.
As well as boating, you can also hike along the Maligne Canyon (just 11 kilometres outside Jasper along Maligne Lake Road) or make the most of the Sulphur Skyline Hike, which leaves from the car park of the Miette Hot Springs.
After your dip in the hot (or cold!) pools, round off your trip by taking the Jasper Sky Tram to the top of Whistler Mountain for some panoramic views.
Canmore and Kananaskis Country
For any RV road trippers returning home via Calgary, Canmore and Kananaskis Country are worth a visit. Kananaskis is situated in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, with so much to offer, including mountain biking, fishing, white water rafting and horseback trails. The town of Canmore is also just 120 kilometres away from Calgary International Airport, making it the perfect end to a round-trip.
There are loads to do around Canmore, from hiking to the top of Ha Ling Peak (with an impressive elevation of just over 700 metres) or visiting the picturesque "Moose Meadows" area. As the name suggests, it's great for wildlife spotting…
If you're planning your next adventure, explore our full range of Canada Motorhome holidays. As well as tours of the Canadian Rockies, discover the Great Parks and Lakes of Western Canada, British Columbia's Sea to Sky trail or the Maritimes route – Canada's astounding hidden gem.
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