Calgary Activities & Attractions
While driving to and from the RiverBase, for your Kicking Horse whitewater rafting adventure, plenty of stops can be made en route. Some stops may take only a few minutes, others a few hours! Driving to our RiverBase from Calgary, please allow at least 2 hours 30 minutes. Once you get here, shake of the car legs and get ready for the best river in proximity to Calagary rafting!
CANMORE: A fun and funky mountain town with plenty of shopping, hip and trendy restaurants and a vibrant downtown which is fun for wandering, window shopping or people watching. Streetside cafes are great places on a nice summer’s day. Gas (petrol) stations are easily accessible just off the highway and the prices tend to be a bit more reasonable than Banff or Lake Louise. If looking for accommodations, there are plenty of options from which to choose.
BANFF: Banff is one of the most popular tourist towns in North America and offers fine shopping, dining and sightseeing experiences. PLEASE NOTE: If planning to stop in Banff, Lake Louise or anywhere else within the national park, visitors are required to purchase a Park Permit.
LAKE LOUISE: Seeing the iconic view of Lake Louise is a ‘must’ for many, along with historic Chateau Lake Louise. For an easy walk, follow the path behind the Canoe Docks up to a lovely viewpoint. If time allows, wander the shores of the Lake or head up to the Lake Agnes Tea House for tasty snacks and unbeatable views of both lakes, the Chateau and surrounding mountains. Wild Water has an office kiosk at the Chateau, just down the hall from the Front Lobby. Please drop by to say hello!
In the Village of Lake Louise, a small assortment of food and retail shops satisfy all sorts of appetites. If in the mood for a great breakfast, lunch or simply a latte, we highly recommend the Trailhead Café (the Trailhead Burrito is our favourite!). Laggan’s Bakery, just next door, offers plenty of tasty and quick options for breakfast to late lunch.
Roadside Stops Along The Way
Between Lake Louise and our RiverBase, there are plenty of things worth exploring. The town of Field is fun, funky and eclectic with lovely guesthouses and local artisans. If looking for a quick bite, try the General Store for tasty sandwiches and yummy baked goods!
- EMERALD LAKE is a 15-minute drive off the Trans Canada Highway (TCH) and is well worth the drive. You can canoe on the lake or take a lovely walk around its perimeter.
- NATURAL BRIDGE is just off the TCH and on the way to Emerald Lake. This easily accessible stop highlights how the Kicking Horse River slowly erodes the soft layers of strata, leaving a natural ‘bridge’ of erosion-resistant rock spanning shore to shore. This area was important to Canada’s First Nations peoples as it provided a safe and easy way to cross the cold and mighty waters of the Kicking Horse.
- TAKAKKAW FALLS is Canada’s 2nd highest waterfall and is about 15 minutes off of the TCH. Visitors can walk right to the base of the falls, or simply view the falls from the parking area. On the drive to the falls on Yoho Valley Road, stop at “The Meeting of the Waters” where the Kicking Horse and Yoho rivers converge. It is mesmerizing to see the two different-coloured rivers meet and slowly merge together.
- SPIRAL TUNNELS is located off the TCH between Lake Louise and Field on the Big Hill. Trainspotters will love this stop. Interpretive signs describe the engineering and design marvel created in 1909 that has trains ‘spiralling’ through two mountains in order to traverse Kicking Horse Pass.