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Banff is the perfect place from which to explore Canada's Rocky Mountains. Surrounded by the pristine wilderness of the Banff National Park and central to many of the regions best attractions, Banff is popular throughout the year. The town's native population of 10,000 is supplemented by around 4 million visitors each year.
Skiers are spoilt for choice with several ski resorts nearby. Try the slopes at Mt Norguay, Lake Louise Ski Resort or Sunshine Village. Mt Norguay is the favorite of the locals, it has the least crowds and the most advanced slopes. Both Lake Louise and Sunshine Village have huge numbers of ski runs to choose from, from advanced to beginner. The easiest way to get there is to catch one of the shuttle buses which pick up from all the hotels in town.
In summer, the landscape around Banff transforms from a winter wonderland to a green wilderness, ripe for a whole variety of outdoor pursuits. There are hundreds of trails to explore, from easy strolls alongside streams to strenuous hikes which circumnavigate spectacular lakes. Mountain biking is another great way to explore and there are bike-rentals in the town which can also provide maps of the best trails in the area. Rent a kayak and get out on one of the incredible vivid blue lakes in the area for a different perspective.
Get out on the town after a day of skiing or cycling. Being a vacation destination, a party atmosphere pervades the town all year round. There are some excellent nightclubs and bars in the center of town. Don't miss the Dancing Sasquatch, a local institution which is open until late.
Banff is around an hour and a half from Calgary by car, or four hours south of Jasper.
Accommodation in Banff
With 38 different Banff hotels and other accommodation options bookable through Expedia's hotels guide, you can pick a Banff hotel that offers the optimal amenities for you.
The Fairmont Banff Springs at 405 Spray Ave, and the Hidden Ridge Resort, at 901 Hidden Ridge Way are two examples of the higher-end accommodations in Banff. The Douglas Fir Resort and Chalets, and the Rimrock Resort Hotel are two more upscale recommendations where a good nights sleep is assured.
One of the highlights of any stay in Banff is Upper Hot Springs. If you choose to stay near Upper Hot Springs, the Fairmont Banff Springs and the Hidden Ridge Resort are both within easy walking distance.
Located in the Canadian Rockies, this Banff hotel's quiet location is 2 blocks from Banff Avenue shopping and museums, 1 block from the Bow River and is close to skiing and hiking .
Nestled in the mountains 750 feet above the town of Banff, The Rimrock Resort Hotel is across from the Upper Hot Springs and within walking distance of the Banff gondola.
Located on the main street of Banff, this inn is within 5 km (3 mi) of the Sulphur Mountain Gondola and Upper Hot Springs.
Located in the heart of Banff, this spa hotel is 0.1 mi (0.2 km) from Banff National Park Information Centre and within 3 mi (5 km) of Upper Hot Springs and Banff Gondola. Cave and Basin National Historic Site is 1.4 mi (2.3 km) away.
This resort, situated high on Tunnel Mountain, features views of downtown Banff and the surrounding Rocky Mountains.
The Fox Hotel and Suites is 4 blocks from downtown Banff, 1 km (0.6 mi) from the Bow River, and 5 km (3 mi) from the Sulphur Mountain Gondola.
This historic 1908 hotel is located in downtown Banff, in the heart of the spectacular Canadian Rockies and within blocks of the Luxton and Whyte museums. The Sulphur Mountain Gondola is just 4 km (2.5 mi) away.
This family-friendly Banff condominium resort is within 3 mi (5 km) of Banff National Park Information Centre, Banff Lake Louise Tourism Bureau, and Canadian Ski Museum West. Canada House Gallery and Banff Park Museum are also within 3 mi (5 km).