The town of Banff is surrounded by mesmerizing views offering plenty of options for exploration. You don’t have to stray far from the town centre to experience a day full of sightseeing. I fell in love with Banff from the moment we arrived. If I only had one day to spend in Banff this is how I would spend it. Everything mentioned aside from the food is completely free for you to explore.
Start off your morning with a delicious coffee and treat from one of the many local coffee shops. My favourite was the WhiteBark Cafe. Best cheesecake I have had in my life, and as my husband would say the coffee was unreal. Next walk Banff Avenue and check out all the great shopping.
Bow Falls Trail
Just off Banff Avenue is the Bow Falls Trail that’s will take you to the amazing Bow Falls. This short trail will take 20-25 minutes. There are many beautiful photo ops along the trail and especially on the bridge.
Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel
Checking out the Fairmont is a must! Located 3.9 km’s from Banff Avenue. This castle like building is gorgeous inside and out. It is also a world heritage site that has been providing hospitality for over 125 years. I highly reccomend checking out the inside as well as the outside.
Pack a lunch and head to the Cascade Ponds located 7 km’s from Banff Avenue. These ponds are the prettiest turquoise colour with an amazing backdrop. Bring a floaty or go for a swim.
Continue on to the three lakes in the Minnewanka loop. The first stop is Johnson Lake just 3 km’s from Cascade Ponds. This lake has a 3 km trail that takes you around the lake. Two Jack lake is next and is my favourite of the three. It has beautiful green water and is the perfect lake to kayak or canoe. The last lake is Lake Minnewanka, the longest lake in the Canadian Rockies. This is the only lake in Banff National Park that allows power boats.
Head back to Banff Avenue to enjoy dinner and drinks at one of the many restaurants to finish off the big day of exploring.