Region Overviews: Canada Travel Guide: Overview
Sprawling, massive Canada contains everything from six time zones to a series of ecosystems so diverse you could conceivably encounter polar bears and grizzly bears on the same trip.
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The pristine air in the Canadian Rockies will change you. Breathe deeply as you ascend. Breathe slowly when you reach a viewpoint. Snowcapped mountains, virgin forests, flowering meadows, rushing rivers, crystalline lakes—the raw beauty here can take your breath away. Discover this magnificent mountain range by bicycle. And don't forget to breathe.
THIS ITINERARY: 5 days, 4 nights
ACCOMMODATIONS: Premiere Hotels
Start Calgary or Canmore / End Banff
Start/End locations may vary. Do not book flights until your trip details are confirmed.
Enjoy dazzling views of the Bow Valley and Cascade Mountain as you ride along the scenic Legacy Trail in Banff National Park and to its postcard-perfect town of Banff | Choose to luxuriate at the world-renowned Willow Stream Spa at the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel | Pedal amid imposing peaks, gem-colored lakes and endless alpine forests—one of the world's most pristine and dramatic landscapes | Bike to Lake Minnewanka—the largest body of water in Banff National Park—for a picnic beneath soaring spires | Take some time to wander through Banff, popping into shops and galleries.
Built in the style of a Scottish baronial castle, this exquisite hotel is set in the heart of Banff National Park and offers magnificent panoramic views, luxurious guest rooms and an award-winning 35,000-square-foot spa. Travel + Leisure World's Best. (pool, spa)
Watch for black bears, elk and bighorn sheep along your route | Pedal Bow Valley's rolling hills past Pilot, Storm and Castle Mountains and the striking Bow River | The spray flies and water pounds at roaring Johnston Canyon waterfall | Up for a longer ride? Add some scenic mileage with a spin up to Storm Mountain or all the way to the hamlet of Lake Louise | Behold one of the most iconic views in the Canadian Rockies on the ride to Bow Summit—the highest point on the Icefields Parkway | You won't soon forget the vista of milky-blue Peyto Lake beneath a wall of towering mountains | At the venerable Post Hotel, savor what Travel + Leisure proclaims "one of the best hotel dining experiences in North America" | A marvelous photo op awaits as you stroll along the shore of Lake Louise, a beloved World Heritage site flanked by glaciated spires | Ride to Moraine Lake and visit the Wenkchemna Valley to cap off an amazing week.
This European-style mountain chalet, set on the Pipestone and Bow Rivers, is the epitome of old-world elegance. Travel + Leisure World's Best. A Relais & Châteaux member. (pool, spa)
The earlier you book, the more choice you'll have and the lower your price. And you can always change your mind — you won't be charged to transfer to a different trip before your final payment is due. View cancellation policy
Click on dates for pricing, itinerary variations and to book your trip. Price is per person, double occupancy.
Every Backroads trip is designed to appeal to a wide variety of interests and fitness levels. We know your pace may vary from one day to the next—and your traveling companion's may differ somewhat from yours. So we present a range of mileage options, and each day you decide exactly what and how much you want to do. LEARN MORE.
Note: The routes on this trip are hilly, with some significant elevation gains and losses. This, coupled with the relatively high altitude, can make biking more challenging, but you're sure to finish each day with a great sense of accomplishment. Traffic can be busy on some routes, with narrow shoulders on Days 1–2 and wide shoulders on Days 4–6.
We want to make sure you're on the right trip and that you have the best experience possible. Every Backroads trip is unique and this one is no exception.
Our exploration of the Canadian Rockies includes time riding on the famed Icefields Parkway for its unrivaled access to wildlife and natural beauty. While the scenery is stunning, sections of the pavement can be rough and repaving is ongoing. The parkway's shoulder is wide, but the area is busy so you should be comfortable riding with traffic. Of course, you're always welcome to jump in the shuttle to avoid more trafficked sections.