42 Things I Love About Banff, Canada (in the winter)

Rockies Banff

1. Curling up next to a roaring fire with a good book, watching the snow fall outside

2. Great skiing, if that’s your thing

3. Surprisingly excellent food at Masala Authentic Indian Cuisine

4. The gorgeous drive from Calgary into the mountains

5. Relaxing in a thermal spa after a long day

6. Flying down an icy slope in a snow tube

7. Step back in time at the Banff Park Museum

Banff Upper Hot Springs

8. Long day exploring the park and the slopes followed by a cozy night in

9. Furry squirrels

10. Spend an afternoon just driving around and be stunned by the beauty

11. How can you not love the word Banff?! Banff, Banff, Banff…

12. Cross country skiing around Lake Louise

13. Journey to the top of the world on the Banff gondola

14. Just two minutes from downtown Banff is Surprise Corner where, well I’ll just let you be surprised


15. Learn about the original inhabitants of the area at the Buffalo Nations Luxton Museum

16. Mastering the art of après-ski, aka poutine and beer

17. Depending on the time of year, take advantage of one of the many hiking trails near town

18. Shopping at one of the many stores on Banff Avenue

19. I love scenic drives, especially along the Icefields Parkway

20. Chatting with locals who are some of the nicest, most welcoming people anywhere

21. Mushing through virgin snow on a dogsled

Kingmik Dogsled Tours

22. Stop by an artist’s gallery for stunning photography and one of a kind arts and crafts

23. A friendly bear or two. Or three.

24. Be sure to watch a televised curling match with some locals. Let me know if you understand it.

25. Enjoying old world style at the iconic Banff Springs Hotel

26. Remembering to stay hydrated, Banff is at elevation and it’s bizarrely dry

27. Tasty fondue at the Grizzly House

28. Head down to the cave and basin to learn more about the railway and check out the natural spa

Discover Banff Tour Ice Walk

29. Test your strength and endurance while ice climbing

30. Canadian beer. Poutine. Repeat.

31. Escaping the harsh winter chill inside a coffee shop, enjoying organic pastries and fair trade coffee

32. Get into the Western theme by spending your evening at a saloon

33. More relaxing at the thermal spa

34. Not a skier, maybe take a snowboarding lesson

35. Driving through the park, hoping to catch sight of elk, bear or who knows what?

Kingmik Dogsled

36. Gourmet burgers at Eddie Burger Bar

37. For whatever reason Banff has a preponderance of fudge and candy shops. Visit them. Eat the candy. Be happy.

38. Walking past sparkly and frozen waterfalls in Johnston Canyon

39. Take a day off from adventure sports and pamper yourself with a massage

40. Walk, hike or dogsled to the Continental Divide

41. I love being in a place where winter actually feels like winter

42. More après-ski

By: Matt Long

Matt has a true passion for travel. As someone who has a bad case of the travel bug, Matt travels the world in order to share tips on where to go, what to see and how to experience the best the world has to offer.

20 thoughts on “42 Things I Love About Banff, Canada (in the winter)”

  1. Hi Matt. I totally agree. I also love great skiing there and there is a great food out there. I had some curry and rice the other day oh and one more thing, we had a relaxing day after to finish off the busy day. What was your budget when being day? If I might ask. Thanks!

  2. Love the pictures! I’ve been to Banff in the summer, but not in the winter and I would love to go then. Especially to do #1 – that’s one of my favorite things to do in the world, plus with a glass of wine. ;)

  3. Hi Matt,

    I’m from Calgary and Banff is my escape because it is really the prettiest place in my world. Anyways, just wanted to let u know that I’m really far from home and I get banff-sick. You have the best pictures and words about the best place on earth! Thanks for making me smile :)

    1. Hi there Megan and thank you for the VERY kind words, I appreciate them and they mean a lot. I can see why you get homesick, it’s a beautiful place!

  4. There is more in Banff for food that Masala, Eddie Burger and Grizzly House. There is more than Poutine to eat here.
    7. Step back in time at the Banff Park Museum: the museum is closed during the winter.
    23. A friendly bear or two. Or three: Good luck with that!!
    Have you ever been in Banff in the winter?

    1. I didn’t say there wasn’t more to eat, but that’s what I enjoyed.

      I was at the Banff Park Museum in January, so I guess it’s open.

      And yes, we were there last winter which is where the photos come from. Thanks for the comments!

  5. Hi Matt, I don’t mind the snow, but don’t know how to ski or snowboard. Everything else on your list sounds awesome! Is there a shuttle bus from Banff to lake lousie? Just a day trip? I won’ have a car.

  6. Thanks ! I’m going there this Friday and just booked dog sledding online. Apparently they say it’s very popular and will get sold out quick. Did you mush your own sled or with guide? What do you recommend? 7

  7. Thanks Matt, your recommendations helped me a great deal. Although I didn’t get to do everything on the list, but it was worth every penny!

  8. Matt, Is Banff best to visit in winter or summer? If you are not into skiing, is Winter going to be boring then? What are there to do during summer?

    1. When I was there in winter I didn’t ski and had lots of fun with the other activities. In summer the focus is the outdoors, everything from hiking/camping to boating and more.

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