Home Destinations 15 Best Things to Do in Banff 2024 for Adults, Kids, or Couples

15 Best Things to Do in Banff 2024 for Adults, Kids, or Couples

by Naoi Rei
15 Best Things to Do in Banff 2024 for Adults, Kids, or Couples

Dive into the stunning wilderness and the spirit of adventure in Banff, nestled deep within the majestic landscapes of the Canadian Rockies. Among the many exciting things to do in Banff, visitors of all stripes—kids, couples, solo explorers—will find activities that spark their excitement and forge unforgettable memories. Whether you crave the calmness of lush forests or the thrill of the slopes, Banff has it all for every type of traveler.

1. Discover the Wonders of Banff National Park

Start your Banff journey by stepping into the heart of Canada’s first national park, Banff National Park. This haven boasts incredible scenery, diverse wildlife, and magical hiking trails. Drive along the scenic Icefields Parkway, spot some wildlife, or grab a spot to marvel at the stunning mountain views.

2. Greet the Sunrise from Sulphur Mountain

See the day break from the top of Sulphur Mountain. You can zoom up there on the Banff Gondola or hike the zigzagging trails to the peak. As the sun peeks over the horizon, you’ll be treated to a spreading view of the peaks all around—a picture-perfect moment great for couples and camera buffs.

3. Soak in the Banff Upper Hot Springs

Loosen up your muscles after a day full of adventure in the warm Banff Upper Hot Springs. These natural waters provide a peaceful soak against a backdrop of stunning mountain views. It’s a prime spot for unwinding with your family or for a cozy, romantic evening.

4. Paddle on the Turquoise Waters of Lake Louise

The striking blue of Lake Louise is an unforgettable sight in Banff. Paddle out in a canoe across its calm surface, or just sit by the shore and watch others glide under the shadow of Victoria Glacier. The lake works its magic on everyone, fascinating grown-ups and sparking wonder in kids.

5. Conquer the Slopes at Sunshine Village Ski Resort

For those looking for excitement and snow, Sunshine Village Ski Resort offers perfect slopes and fluffy snow. Skilled or not, you’ll find the right run for you. The ski school is a hit with children and a fun way for couples to learn together.

6. Stroll Along the Shore of Moraine Lake

Less busy but just as beautiful as nearby Lake Louise, Moraine Lake offers peaceful walks by its edge. The reflection of the Ten Peaks in the mirror-like water is simply mesmerizing. Grab a picnic and settle down for a serene family afternoon or a personal time of quiet.

7. Hike Through Johnston Canyon

The trail through Johnston Canyon takes you on an amazing walk past tumbling waterfalls and deep-blue pools. There are catwalks attached to the walls of the canyon for a path that’s thrilling, safe, and available to most, bringing you up close with Banff’s wild side.

8. Experience White Water Rafting on the Kicking Horse River

For a blast of excitement, try white water rafting on the Kicking Horse River. With family or friends, the rapids offer a lively challenge that’ll make your pulse race. Many tour operators provide a range of experiences from calm floats to heart-thumping plunges.

9. Explore the Cave and Basin National Historic Site

Dive into the underground at the Cave and Basin National Historic Site—where Canada’s national parks began. Be amazed by the warm springs inside the cave and dig into the history and geology with hands-on exhibits. It’s a spot for discovery, adventure, and reflection.

10. Take on the Via Ferrata at Norquay

If you’re chasing a rush, the Via Ferrata at Norquay is for you. This rock-climbing route, helped by steel cables and iron steps, offers stunning views and a climb that those new to the sport can tackle. It’s a thrilling experience, just right for couples and pals looking for adventure.

11. Admire Art at the Banff Centre

Art lovers, rejoice! The Banff Centre is a haven of creativity, with galleries, shows, and workshops waiting for you. This place blends art with nature to fuel your creativity and offers a classy break from the more physical things to do in Banff.

12. Cycle the Legacy Trail

Meet Banff’s scenic beauty on a bike by riding the Legacy Trail. This well-kept path runs between Banff and Canmore, offering a pleasant ride with the Canadian Rockies keeping you company. Stop at viewpoints along the way to snap some gorgeous photos.

13. Visit the Banff Park Museum

Uncover the natural history of the Canadian Rockies at the Banff Park Museum. It houses loads of stuffed animals, letting you get up close with the wildlife of the region inside a classic building. It’s a learning trip perfect for all ages.

14. Go on a Wildlife Tour

A trip to Banff isn’t complete without joining a guided wildlife tour. Keep an eye out for elk, bears, and bighorn sheep in their home turf, while expert guides fill you in on the local ecosystem. Both grown-ups and kiddos will find this gentle adventure educational and exciting.

15. Attend the Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival

Coming in the fall? Don’t miss the Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival. It’s a celebration of the best mountain stories, with films, books, and speakers all on show. It dishes out a variety of things to do that fit every visitor.


What’s the best season to visit Banff for outdoor fun?

Summer (June to August) is top-notch for most outdoor fun like hikes and canoeing. But if skiing or snowboarding is your jam, winter (November to May) is your best bet for hitting the slopes around Banff.

Can families find fun things to do in Banff?

Definitely! Banff is packed with fun for families. You can explore the wonders of Banff National Park, paddle Lake Louise, check out Banff Park Museum beasts, or soak in the Banff Upper Hot Springs—just a few of the many great options.

Do I need any special passes to get into Banff National Park?

Yes, you’ll need a valid pass to enter Banff National Park. Pick up a daily pass or go for an annual Discovery Pass if you plan multiple visits. These passes help keep the park pristine and aid conservation work.

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