This is 2 weeks in the Canadian Rockies starting in Calgary and ending in Calgary. Once you pick up your car or campervan from Calgary head to Highway 1 which will take you straight to Banff.
– We suggest that where you can reserve campsites online on https://reservation.pc.gc.ca/ParksCanada for what you can. Don’t worry if cannot book everywhere as there are walk in campsites available too as detailed in the post below.
– How the walk up campsites work is you turn up and find an empty plot. Plots are reserved with a slip of paper which you pick up from the hut at the entrance, which states your arrival date and how many nights you will be staying. Picky your plot and then put your money in an envelope, which is also provided at the camp entrance and you post into a letter box. We suggest you arrive at about 11 as people have to vacate at 11.
– You will need to buy a parks pass to visit the rockies. You can buy this pass on entrance Banff national park, if coming from Calgary then he place to buy is a couple of km after Canmore. Don’t worry you won’t miss it and will more than likely queue with everyone else! If you are staying more than 6 Days it is cheaper to buy a year long pass.
– Pick up maps from the tourist information, these are so so helpful and you will take it on all your hikes/use them to plan your hikes. The great thing about this trip is that all the walk are signposted and will also tell you how many kms so you will NEVER get lost!
– We flew into Calgary, hired a camper and headed from Calgary to Jasper and back and it took 2 weeks. We hired our Camper through Wicked Campers and couldn’t recommend them enough. They are cheap, cheerful and suited us perfectly for what we want.
Day 1-3 Banff
We suggest once you pick up your campervan heading straight to Banff for 3 nights.
– Lake Minnewanke
– Climb Sulphur Mountain
– Drinks @ Park Distillery and Calagry Brewing Company
– Chill @ Banff Upper Hot Springs
Campsite: Tunnel Mountain Campground or Two Jack Campground
Day 3-4 Johnston Canyon
From Banff head super early to Johnston Canyon to walk to the falls and then spend one night camping here.
– Walk to Lower Falls, Upper Falls, Ink Pots
– Walk to Castle Lookout
Campsite: Johnston Canyon Campground or Castle Mountain Campground
Day 4-6 Lake Louise
Another early start and head to either Lake Louise or Moraine for the day and then the following day visit the lake you haven’t yet visited
Lake Louise – walk to Little Beehive, Lake Agnes Teahouse and Big Beehive
Campground: Lake Louise Hardsided or Lake Louise Tent
Day 6-7 or 8 Icefields Parkway
Spend 1 or 2 days travelling up the Icefields Parkway. We did two days but wish we only camped for 1 night.
– Bow Lake – walk to the falls
– Peyto Lake – walk to the view point
– Anthabasca Falls
Campground: Mosquito Creek Campground or Honeymoon Lake Campground
Day 7-8/9/10 Jasper
Spend 2 or 3 nights in Jasper (we were originally planning 3 nights but as the weather wasn’t great we left early)
– Cycle to Patricia or Pyramid Lake
– Hire canoes on Pyramid Lake (cheapest in the Rockies)
– Visit Malinge Lake
– Visit Bears Paw Bakery/Cafe
Campground: Whistler or Wapitu
You may not have these extra days as you may have spent more time in the above locations. Take these days as a free day, we headed back to Banff as we loved it there and also back to Lake Louise and Moraine Lake.
Day 12-14 Canmore
Spend 2 nights in Canmore before heading back to Calgary to give the campervan back. Canmore is a very up and coming town nearly as good as Banff. As there are lots of building restrictions now in place in Banff, building has moved to Canmore making it a great town to visit.
– Climb one of the 3 main mountains:
– Visit Canmore Brewing
– Visit Grizzly Paw Brewing