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Christmas in Banff and Lake Louise

Christmas Events and Festivities

November 17, 2017 - January 1, 2018

Unwrap your sense of wonder and experience this holiday season in a truly enchanted setting— Banff and Lake Louise.

Check off your Christmas lists with unique, handmade gifts, or enjoy a Christmas show at the Fairmont Banff Springs. From taking in a Mountaintop Christmas at the Banff Gondola, to Christmas and New Years events at Mt Norquay, Banff Sunshine, and Lake Louise Ski Resort there’s truly something for everyone.

To plan your perfect mountain getaway, view our full event listings below.

*All events are subject to change without notice and are weather dependant. 

Ongoing Christmas Events

The holidays are a time for wonder and joy, so gather your friends and family together for some of Banff and Lake Louise's ongoing Christmas events. 

Hubert Kang, Travel Alberta

Banff Live Theater

Mavericks of the Mountains

Date: Dec 28 – 31
Time: 5 p.m.
Cost: Adults $26, Children $16
Address: Fairmont Banff Springs, 405 Spray Avenue, Banff

A Christmas Carol

Date: December 2 - 31
Time: Wednesday - Sunday 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 2 p.m., Special 5 p.m. showing December 20 - 22
Cost: Adults $26, Children $16
Address: Fairmont Banff Springs, 405 Spray Avenue, Banff

More Information

12 Animals of Christmas Treasure Hunt

Date: November 18, 2017 - January 7, 2018
Time: Daily with gondola hours
Cost: Adult $62, see website for children's pricing
Address: Banff Gondola, 100 Mountain Avenue, Banff

More Information

Kelly MacDonald

Photos with Santa at the Spirit of Christmas

Date: Saturdays & Sundays from November 25-December 24
Time: 2 p.m. - 4 p.m. 
Cost: TBD. A portion of the proceeds will go to Santa's Anonymous. 
Address: 133 Banff Avenue, Banff
Details: Join Santa at The Spirit of Christmas to have your photos professionally taken by Banff Photography.

Brunch with Santa

Date: December 23 and 24 
Time: 11:30 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Cost: Adults $52, Children 6-12 $29, and Children under 5 are free
Address: Bow Valley Grill, Fairmont Banff Springs, 405 Spray Avenue, Banff

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Christmas and New Years on the Ski Hills

Embrace the holiday season like a true Canadian and ski with Santa at any one of our three ski hills, indulge in a long-table dinner to bring in the New Year, or partake in a torchlight parade. 

Mt Norquay

Santa Shreds for Free

Date: December 25
Time: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Cost: Free, with Santa costume
Details: On Christmas Day anyone dressed up at Jolly St. Nick (or Mrs. Claus, a reindeer, or an elf) will receive a free full day pass! Guests must be in full costume to qualify for a free lift ticket (just a Santa had doesn't qualify).

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New Years Torchlight Parade

Date: December 31
Time: 7 p.m. - 10 p.m.
Cost: Free
Details: Watch skiiers light up Mt Norquay by torchlight from the town of Banff. If you're an expert skiier contact Mt Norquay to participate in the parade. 

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Lake Louise Ski Resort

Ski with Santa

Date: December 23 & 24
Time: 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Cost: Free with lift ticket
Details: Santa will be skiing with his elves and Griff the Grizzly on the frontside runs. Take a picture with Santa or ski a few runs with him. 

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Torchlight Dinner & Ski Event

Date: December 25 & 31
Time: 3:30 p.m. - 9 p.m.
Cost: Varies based on package
Details: Ski the hill after hours, starting with an après event at the Whitehorn Bistro, followed by skiing down to the main lodge for dinner. 

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Banff Sunshine

Santa on the Mountain

Date: December 23 and 24
Time: 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Cost: Free with lift ticket
Details: Find Mr. and Mrs. Claus at Banff Sunshine Village for a photo before he heads out on Christmas Eve. 

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Bourgeau Bonfire Bash

Date: December 23 to January 1
Cost: Free with lift ticket
Details: Enjoy the comfort of an outdoor fire at the Base Area after a day on the slopes.

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Christmas Eve Torchlight Parade

Date: December 24
Time: 7 p.m.
Cost: Free with lift ticket
Details: Watch specially trained skiers come down the Strawberry face with lit torches. 

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Christmas Day 

Date: December 25
Time: 10 a.m.
Cost: Free, with Santa costume
Details:  Dress up as Santa or Mrs. Claus and ski for free! Guests must be in full costume to qualify for a free lift ticket.

More Information

New Year's Eve Torchlight Parade

Date: December 31
Time: 7 p.m.
Cost: Free with lift ticket
Details: Watch specially trained skiers come down the Strawberry face with lit torches. 

More Information

Where to find Cozy Fireplaces

Some of the best moments during the holiday season revolve around curling up under a blanket, next to a wood-burning fireplace with a cup of hot chocolate. These moments are elevated even further in Banff and Lake Louise when this fireplace is next to a window overlooking mountain vistas. Here are some accommodations that offer these rejuvenating moments.

The Rimrock Resort Hotel

Top feature: The indoor fireplaces are next to huge windows that overlook the Bow Valley. The outdoor one is a perfect winter retreat with stunning vistas of the surrounding mountains. 

Buffalo Mountain Lounge

Top feature: The fireplace is located in a beautiful lounge right next to the Sleeping Buffalo bar. Order a signature cocktail and appetizer before your hand-crafted meal is served in the restaurant. 

Célestine Aerden
Storm Mountain Lodge

Top feature: Book your own cabin that features its very own wood-burning fireplace. It's the intimate getaway you've been dreaming of. 

The Juniper Hotel & Bistro

Top feature: The Juniper Bistro boasts a cozy indoor fireplace where you can cuddle up with your friends and enjoy Canadian cuisine. The outdoor fireplace is just as relaxing, which also offers a unique view of the town of Banff. 

A Postcard-Perfect Christmas Itinerary

There's nothing more Canadian than spending a few days in the Rocky Mountains over the holidays. See what a perfect two-day vacation in Banff and Lake Louise could look like. 

Célestine Aerden

As you wake up and gaze at the breathtaking views, you sip your first morning coffee by the warm glow of a cozy, crackling fireplace. Wrapped in blankets, it's easy to savour the moment watching small snowflakes fall outside your window. Then, you realize there’s nowhere else you’d rather be.

You stroll along quaint streets while the sun rises over the mountaintops. Hopping from shop to shop you're welcomed by the sound of holiday carolers and greeted with unique stores that line historic Banff Avenue; it’s the perfect place to find that special gift for under the tree.

With your Christmas list checked twice, it's time to give your feet a rest and enjoy a sleigh ride through the fresh snow. The crisp mountain air cools your cheeks and you warm your hands on a cup of hot chocolate as you glide through the shimmering trees. 

When the sun goes down, the streets, and your holiday spirit, come alive as you indulge in an authentically Canadian meal in downtown Banff. After a night under the lights of Banff Avenue and the stars in the sky, you retreat to your cozy cabin, ready to start tomorrow's adventure. 

To experience the pure joy of the holidays, there’s nowhere better than Banff and Lake Louise—it’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle and gather with friends and family.