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Banff

Day Trips

Our most recommended Banff Day Trips

Banff: Afternoon Kananaskis River Whitewater Rafting Tour

1. Banff: Afternoon Kananaskis River Whitewater Rafting Tour

Enjoy whitewater rafting down an idyllic stretch of the Kanaskasis River, the perfect excursion for families, groups, and newcomers to whitewater rafting. Explore the pristine waterways of the Kananaskis River. Scout for local wildlife and enjoy the unrivaled beauty of the Canadian wilderness. Meet at the Nakoda Lakeside Lodge on Highway 1A. Start your rafting adventure with a 45-minute drive from Banff or Calgary. Enjoy the short scenic ride as you wind through the Canadian countryside. Once you're fitted with your wetsuits and other safety equipment, ride in a comfortable bus a short distance to the starting point on the Kananaskis River. Here, your guides will provide safety instructions and teach your paddle techniques. Feel equipped and ready to go as you prepare for the river. Board your raft and begin your journey. Admire the views during calm parts of the river. Practice different paddling techniques with your guide. Spot local wildlife such as soaring eagles, and deer who stroll along the banks of the river. Then, get ready to be splashed as your raft through class 2-3 rapids as you travel along a lovely forested area of the river. At the end of the journey enjoy a scenic float to the finish where you can swim and splash in the water. Return to the river base for high fives and snacks to celebrate your rafting adventure. This tour operates from mid-May to mid-September and is ideal for anyone that has never rafted before or does not know how to swim.

From Banff: Lake Louise and Moraine Lake Sightseeing Tour

2. From Banff: Lake Louise and Moraine Lake Sightseeing Tour

Enjoy the drive from Banff in a modern minibus after your friendly guide picks you up from the meeting point. Keep your eyes peeled for animals such as deer, elk, and bears as you drive along the scenic, winding Bow Valley Parkway. Your guide will share stories about Banff National Park, its history, and the local animals on the way. Arrive at iconic Lake Louise after a scenic stop along the Bow Valley Parkway to admire the views of Castle Mountain. Your 30-minute visit at the lake gives you plenty of time to wander the famous shoreline, take photos of the lake against the backdrop of the mountains and Victoria Glacier, and admire the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise Hotel. Next, your guide will take you to Moraine Lake, set in the rugged Valley of the Ten Peaks with waterfalls and rock piles. Enjoy a short guided walk to the famous Valley of the Ten Peaks viewpoint, or relax and take in the lake from the shoreline. After a 30-minute stop here, your guide will transport you back to Banff and drop you at your hotel.

Banff National Park: 1-Hour Spray River Horseback Ride

3. Banff National Park: 1-Hour Spray River Horseback Ride

Embark on a horseback riding adventure as you breathe in the pine-spiced mountain air. Approach the Bow Falls and enjoy spectacular views. Pass by the famous Fairmont Banff Springs Golf Course known as one of the most immaculately manicured courses in Canada. Continue along the edge of the Fairmont Banff Springs Golf Course and cross through the waters once more. A partial climb up Sulphur Mountain brings you through a wooded residential area and back to the corrals. Enjoy a unique experience and cross the Spray River. On hotter days, your horse may even decide to cool itself off by splashing water onto its belly. Have an experience unlike anything else.

Kicking Horse River: Whitewater Rafting Half-Day Trip

4. Kicking Horse River: Whitewater Rafting Half-Day Trip

Enjoy an exhilarating whitewater rafting tour on the Kicking Horse River as you brave Class 2 to Class 4/4+ waters with a guide. Take on rapids such as Hopi's Hole, Cable Car, Table Saw, and the famous Portage and Shotgun. Your experience begins at the local partner's day lodge, conveniently located on the TransCanada Highway. After a warm welcome, your crew distributes top-of-the-line rafting gear (wetsuit, wetsuit booties and gloves, spray jackets, life jackets, and helmets). In the comfort of heated change rooms, change into the provided gear before taking a quick shuttle to the "put-in" (starting point), where you receive your extensive safety briefing before jumping in the river. This is the biggest whitewater river in the Rockies. Prepare to hold on and get wet. Enjoy the canyon environment and possibly get a glimpse of a mountain goat, wolf, or bear. Following your trip, another quick shuttle returns you back to the warmth of the base. Once changed back into dry and comfortable land clothes, enjoy snacks and a selection of hot and cold beverages. Stop by the gift shop for a souvenir or photo of the trip to take back home.

Banff: Morning Whitewater Rafting Tour in Horseshoe Canyon

5. Banff: Morning Whitewater Rafting Tour in Horseshoe Canyon

Embark on an exciting rafting trip through class 3-4 rapids and with big waves meaning you will get soaked and have lots of fun. Along the way, keep your eyes peeled for local wildlife sightings and enjoy the stunning outdoor beauty of the Horseshoe Canyon section of the Bow River. Start your rafting adventure with an optional pick-up in Banff or Canmore and enjoy the short scenic ride as it winds its way through the Canadian countryside. Once you're fitted with your wetsuits and other safety equipment, be transported in a comfortable bus a short distance to the starting point on the Bow River. Here, your guides will go through safety instructions and paddle techniques ready for your time on the river. Then it's time to jump aboard to start your journey. Admire the views during calm parts of the river and learn from your guide as they lead the group through different paddling techniques. Make sure to watch for the area’s local wildlife, including eagles soaring above and deer strolling along the river banks. Then, the river comes to life, kicking up a series of frothy rapids that will get your heart pumping. Hang tight and listen for your guide's instructions as he helps you navigate the whitewater through the shale cliffs. At the midway point, stop for an optional cliff jump into the glacier-fed waters of the Bow River. Depending on your adventure level you can choose from a medium or a big cliff jump, or simply enjoy watching the others take the plunge. After the thrill of cliff jumping, continue rafting until you reach the endpoint. Return to the river base for high fives, snacks, and optional return transport. This tour operates from mid May to early September, with transport available from late May onwards on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

Banff National Park: 2-Hour Sundance Loop Horseback Ride

6. Banff National Park: 2-Hour Sundance Loop Horseback Ride

Explore stunning sections of wilderness on this two-hour trip and spot wildlife that you might not get to see on foot. Learn a few cowboy tricks along the way from your experienced guide.  Pass by natural sulphur hot springs as you make your way to one of Banff’s national historic sites, the Cave and Basin. Trek along the tranquil Bow River and take in magnificent views of the Bow Valley before pressing through thick marshes as you climb Sulphur Mountain. Continue up to Windy Knoll where you can take striking photos of the sweeping landscape

Kicking Horse River: Half-Day Intro to Whitewater Rafting

7. Kicking Horse River: Half-Day Intro to Whitewater Rafting

Get a perfect introduction to whitewater rafting on Class 1-3 rapids starting in Yoho National Park of Canada. Experience moderately-challenging rapids and the stunning scenery of the Canadian Rockies.  Check-in at the lodge conveniently located on TransCanada Highway #1. Be fitted with top-of-the-line gear and transported to the starting point of the rafting experience. Receive a thorough safety briefing before setting off on the river. Embark on a 90-minute downstream journey starting with the "Alarm Clock" rapid, which is sure to wake everyone up. In between the exciting rapids, take in the beautiful scenery surrounding you on all sides. Learn about the wildlife in the area, how the Kicking Horse River got its name, and how the river gets its beautiful blue color. Finish the rafting trip at "Hopi's Hole", which serves as an exciting grande finale. After the rafting, be taken back to the lodge to relax and warm up in the heated changing-rooms. Once back in warm, dry clothes, enjoy freshly baked goodies and seasonal fruit along with a selection of hot and cold beverages. Browse through the gift shop to pick up a souvenir t-shirt or photos from your experience.

Athabasca Glacier: Columbia Icefield Parkway Tour from Banff

8. Athabasca Glacier: Columbia Icefield Parkway Tour from Banff

Get picked up from your Banff hotel in a modern mini bus by your friendly guide. Departing from Banff, your guide will welcome you on the tour with an overview of where you'll be headed as you sit back and enjoy the ride along the Icefields Parkway, one of the world’s most stunning scenic drives. Because you don’t have to navigate or watch the road, this tour lets you to focus on the amphitheater of mountains towering above as you keep your eyes peeled for wildlife at the edges of the forest. The highlight of the tour is the Glacier Adventure, located halfway along the Icefields Parkway near the border of Jasper National Park. Stop at the Columbia Icefield Glacier Discovery Centre and board a bus that will take you to the specially designed 56-passenger Ice Explorer vehicle. Then, drive onto the Athabasca Glacier that is thousands of years old. After learning about the glacier along the way, enjoy 20 minutes of free time on the glacier to soak up the views, touch this ancient sheet of ice, and even drink pure, cold water straight from the glacier. From here, head to the nearby glass floor Glacier Skywalk and follow the 1-kilometer walkway that leads to a platform where glass is all that separates you from a 918-foot (280 m) drop. As you step out on the cliff-edge walkway, witness the giant glaciers perched above you and admire the views of the spectacular Sunwapta Valley spread out below. After the Glacier Adventure component of the tour (around 3 hours in total), there will be a scenic stop (weather permitting) to enjoy your hearty packed lunch of a sandwich, juice, fruit, chips, and brownies. Visit iconic landmarks along the Icefields Parkway such as Bow Lake, the headwaters of the mighty Bow River before heading back to Banff.

Banff: 4-Hour E-Bike and Walking Tour in Johnston Canyon

9. Banff: 4-Hour E-Bike and Walking Tour in Johnston Canyon

See the best of Johnston Canyon and Bow Valley Parkway by combining cycling and hiking on this 4-hour guided tour. Ride with your guide through Vermilion Lakes, then make your way up the Legacy Trail. Ride along Bow Valley Parkway and ditch your e-bikes for your hiking boots as you hike up Johnston Canyon. Enjoy spectacular views of the Lower Falls Bridge and see wildlife along the way, including deer, elk, and bears. Enjoy your return shuttle back to Banff. Relax and admire the views on your way after a total of 26 kilometers of cycling and 3 kilometers of walking.

Canadian Rockies: Helicopter Flight with Exploration Hike

10. Canadian Rockies: Helicopter Flight with Exploration Hike

Get ready for an awe-inspiring experience of the Rocky Mountain with this scenic helicopter flight and hiking tour. See the Rockies from a bird's-eye view. Admire the stunning views of the mountains, lakes, and glaciers from above. Then explore the region’s natural beauty on foot. Choose from a 20, 30, or 55-minute scenic flight. Each option includes incredible panoramas of waterfalls, emerald-green lakes, and mountain ridges. With the 55-minute flight, approach the Columbia Icefield, the largest expanse of ice in the Rocky Mountains. After the flight, land at the confluence of the Cline River and Waterfalls Creek. Continue to explore the wild beauty of this region on foot, hiking to the Twin Falls waterfall. Then climb back on board the helicopter and fly back to the heliport, enjoying the fantastic views of Abraham Lake.

Other Sightseeing Options in Banff

Want to discover all there is to do in Banff? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Banff

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 19 reviews

Excellant tour. Pick up & drop off from our hotel door. Seen everything we wanted to & more. Comfortable air conditioned car. Stopped off whenever we wanted too. Offered water & plenty of bathroom breaks. Had lunch in banff. (Initially, It appears pricey but it definitely is not).... as i think the public bus to banff from calgary is $72 per adult 1 way & then you have to book your tour to go around banff. Just Book the private tour with these guys 'Abest transport'!!!!! Worth every penny. Thank you manny for a great trip! Highly recommend for a convenient personal & stress free day.

It was a great experience. The crew at wild water adventures made everything run smoothly. Simon was an awesome captain that was very knowledgeable and explained everything in detail. He made the adventure very enjoyable!

It was awesome! Excellent and funny guides (especially our leader "Tom"), and wonderful scenery over the rafting course. It is strongly recommended for kids and family.

the guide was awesome! I recommend this activity! It was so much fun! My grandchildren from 7 to 11 loved it too!

It is a great river for first timers, and was what I expected. All and all a good trip.