Living in Alberta takes a particularly brave soul. With winters that plunge down way into the minus figures, it certainly requires warm blood and a strong heart. That being said, people who do live here are rewarded with some of the most incredible natural landscapes in the world. For people who love the great outdoors and winter sports, there are few places that can rival it. A great way to see it is on a road trip, which gives you the ultimate freedom to journey around at your own pace.
If you are planning a drive around this special area of Canada and are travelling from abroad, make sure to visit the website of the Canadian Eta to see if you need to apply for one before travelling. Here are just some of the sights you will want to take in if you are planning a trip to Alberta.
The main city in Alberta is one of the most modern and vibrant. Fiercely proud of its roots, the time to visit here is during the world famous Calgary Stampede, a ten day event that takes place during early July and features a range of rodeo attractions, country music and other outdoor spectacles. Away from this, take a trip up to the top of the Calgary Tower and you can stare right across the remarkably flat landscape to the Rocky Mountains beyond. There are also plenty of parks where you can while away the hours in the summer months.
Banff National Park
Regularly featuring right at the top of must-visit Canada lists, Banff National Park is home to some simply breathtaking mountain scenery. The small town of Banff will act as your base, and has been clearly geared towards the thousands of visitors it receives each year. In the wintertime, skiing and snowboarding dominates here, while there are also still plenty of hiking trails to enjoy. In the summer, take a trip over to the spectacular Lake Louise for vibrant colours and clear air. Also nearby is the equally special Moraine Lake, which has 10 peaks of over 3,000 metres each serving as its backdrop.
Jasper National Park
The biggest national park in the whole of Canada, Jasper is 10,878 square kilometres of lakes, forestry, mountains and glaciers. Harder to access and less visited than Banff, you get much more of a remote feel when you pay Jasper a visit. Remember, many areas in the park close off completely when the winter months take hold. There are plenty of epic hiking trails and scenic lookout spots to enjoy, and the town itself has plenty of facilities so you can base yourself here. If you are making the drive here from Banff, make sure to take the Icefields Parkway which runs from Lake Louise. One of the most beautiful of the world’s drives, make sure to make a stop at the Glacier Skywalk, a glass bottomed platform 280 metres above the valley.