7 Sightseeing Attractions in Banff, Alberta
Nestled in the crook of the Canadian Rocky Mountains 128 kilometres west of Calgary is the picturesque town of Banff, Alta. Surrounded by what many consider the most spectacular scenery in North America, it was named after Canada’s first national park, in which it is a municipality. Now surrounded by five other parks—Glacier, Jasper, Yoho, Waterton Lakes and Mount Revelstoke—Banff National Park was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1984.
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Photo: Eddy Galeotti/Shutterstock
Things to Do in Banff: The Town
The town of Banff itself is small, but it packs a sensory wallop that will leave you breathless, with soaring mountain peaks encircling a quaint, alpine setting. Its main street bustles with shopping and restaurants. Many are locally-owned, brimming with Canadian-made art and photography. The food offerings are ethnically diverse, but they include homegrown favourites such as Alberta steak, bison and elk.
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Things to Do in Banff: The Gondola
In combination with a business trip to Calgary, and because I had never been to Alberta, my husband Gabriel and I decided to spend four days exploring the Banff National Park area. Our quest to find the perfect view led us to the Banff Gondola at the base of Sulphur Mountain. The eight-minute journey in an enclosed cabin with windows brings you to the summit overlooking the town; the view is absolutely breathtaking.
As our second night in Banff coincided with our 22nd wedding anniversary, we were privileged to celebrate with the Alpine Lights mountaintop dining experience at the Panorama Restaurant. After dinner, we sipped wine on comfortable leather couches and watched the waning sun glint off snowy peaks.
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