WANDERING IN WESTERN CANADA – BANFF x YOHO

Neverending scrolling incoming ! Too much to see in this area !

BANFF x LAKE LOUISE

I found out about this city in a movie a few years ago, and it’s the main reason why I wanted to go to Canada ! Surrounded by mountains, Banff is a city with an unrivaled charm..

Where to sleep ?

In Banff, there is no Airbnb !

TUNNEL MOUNTAIN II CAMPGROUND : Not the cutest but the only campground open in the fall.. and it’s clean so it did the job !

CANMORE : After a day of intense horseriding, we needed a shower and a good night’s sleep.. As said above, no Airbnb in Banff but we found one in the nearest city, Canmore. 30 min away south of Banff by car, once again not the cutest but the most squirrely, so it did the job ! Plus, we used this opportunity to do some laundry, which was overdue !

Where to eat ?

– TOQUE : The perfect mix between cabin and industrial styles! Local beers, WI-FI, access to electricity, good Poutine and lovely service that comes with a smile! Good value for money!

– PARK DISTILLERY: My immediate favorite among all the places we had tried until then, an absolute killer of a restaurant! (I need to emphasize the “until then” part, because we found this little pizza place in Calgary a couple of days later, and OH-MY-GOD). Just like many restaurants in Banff, no wifi despite the place being quite modern, but I think that’s actually the intent. This place is halfway between a campfire cantine and a gourmet restaurant. The dishes on the menu look fairly simple at first sight, but the preparation process really makes them special! Each bite is an explosion of tastes, the cooking and seasoning are perfect,  the mixing of flavors is truly inventive, the presentation is quite original without going over the top. We got the Mess Hall Standard (for two) which gave us the opportunity to try a bit of everything. From then on it was a succession of “mmms”, “yuuuuuums” and “ohmygodyoushouldhaveabiteofthisrightnows”. To make it even more perfect, the visual identity of the place is very well thought out, the decoration is sublime, it actually looks like a distillery, and by the way the cocktails (made with home-distilled liquors and glacier water) are simply delicious! I guess you got the point, Park Distillery is up there with the best! (It obviously comes at a price, but we have no regrets whatsoever!) A really, REALLY amazing place, for those of you who were still unsure after all this rambling!

The Mess Hall Standard for 2

The Park Distillery Collection

– COYOTES SOUTHWESTERN GRILL : Good breakfasts.. but no wifi and service was a little slow..

– COW’S : such a tasty blueberry milkshake !

What to do ?

VERMILION LAKES : a few minutes away from Banff.. the autumnal colours were amazing..

– LAKE LOUISE : Essential

PLAIN OF 6 GLACIERS TEA HOUSE: It was impossible for me and my knee to make the 5k that separated us from the Tea House, so we went for plan B: a horseback riding trip! What a great idea that was! Brewster Adventures is one of the very few (it might even be one of two) companies that offer trips lasting more than two hours, to go up there and reach the glaciers, and enjoy an unrivaled view on Lake Louise. Again, we were lucky enough to book our trip for a group rate (approx. $260/p) and end up just the two of us with our super nice guide Melissa from New Zealand!

Mirror Lake

 Lake Agnes x its Tea House

 LAKE LOUISE GONDOLA 

Lake Louise from the top of the gondola

 MORAINE LAKE : Lake Louise’s little brother (or is it sister?). Its color is just as incredible (or more!) but its size makes it more appreciable at human scale (if that makes any sense). We only stayed there to enjoy a long walk along the shores, but if we had been able to afford it, we would have stayed a night at the Moraine Lake Lodge to enjoy the tranquility of the place, as well as a short canoeing trip before dawn and the arrival of the hords of tourists.

 MINNEWANKA LAKE : A semi-artificial lake supplied by glaciers. It’s huge, which makes it a popular place for tourists who want to go on mini-cruises. Way too crowded for us, it does have the advantage of being equiped with a large deck on which there are benches. A great, somewhat windy viewing point!

YOHO NATIONAL PARK (BC)

 EMERALD LAKE : The name says it all… 

 TAKAKKAW FALLS : means “it’s amazing” in native canadian ! 

  

Thanks to all who have scrolled/read until the end !

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