If you thought Canada was all mousse, “eh” and maple syrup—think again. There is a road in Canada that will leave you breathless. The 232 km Icefields Parkway is known as the most scenic drive in Canada.
The Canadian Icefields Parkway with its towering mountains, icy blue lakes, and shimmering crystal ancient glaciers draws 100,000 vehicles per month. This is a trip through Banff National Park and Jasper National Park which is possibly the most scenic drive on earth and should be on your road trip bucket list.
But you wouldn’t want to. If you are also thinking of going to Icefields Parkway, do not delay at all. Book business class tickets now and make the most of these places.
A road like this demands your time to explore, stop, photograph, marvel. And while there are plenty of places you’ll be pulling the car over, here are our top 5 places to stop on the Icefield Parkway from Banff to Jasper.
1) Lake Louise
The Lefroy Glacier melts into an impossibly beautiful and mirror-smooth lake. Lake Louise is one of the most romantic lakes in the Canadian Rockies region, especially during the snow season when the white-topped mountains form a stunning and serene landscape.
2) Waterfalls on Icefields Parkway
There are two waterfalls along the Icefields Parkway that you won’t want to miss. A short drive from Jasper this is where you’ll see a Class 5 waterfall. Which you will see with a drop of 80 feet. Its turquoise sapphire water is mesmerizing.
The falls will look pretty impressive for the amount and force of the water. They can be safely viewed and photographed with a lot of fun from a variety of viewing platforms and walkways. The falls are particularly impressive in late spring and early summer when snowpack runoff is high.
3) Columbia Icefield / Athabasca Glacier
It’s an easy drive from Jasper to the largest ice field in the Rocky Mountains. It’s a rough ride to the glacier, but once you’ve parked you have free time to roam around and become an ice explorer.
The Saskatchewan River Crossing is a starting point for tourism on the Columbia Icefield. So make sure you watch it while you can still see it.
4) Peto Lake
As if a 10-minute walk through a snowy wonderland couldn’t be more fun at all. When you reach an elevation of 6,102 feet you will be rewarded with the perfect view to see Peto Lake and sweeping valleys at Bow Summit.
It is one of the highest points for the drive from Bow Summit, Banff to Jasper and will be the highest elevation a public road will cross in Canada. It takes over 3 hours to see all the beauty along the Icefields Parkway, the most scenic drive in Canada. My best strategy is to divide and conquer.
5) Bow Lake
Bow Lake Icefields is one of the most underrated spots on the Parkway. You’ll find Bow Lake near the southern end at an elevation of 6,299 feet. Its beauty is best captured under the setting sun.
Stay in Banff and Lake Louise to explore the southern section and follow it up with a stay at Jasper for the northern section. But whatever you do, make sure the above 5 stops are at the top of your list. Be sure to check Parks Canada for any closures along the Icefield Parkway.