Banff Legacy Trail
Difficulty: Easy / Family
Starting points: Valleyview Picnic Area, Cascade Ponds, Vermilion Lakes, East end of Banff Avenue
Distance: 26 km
From the town of Banff, the Banff Legacy Trail provides cyclists with two options: heading east toward the Banff National Park gates, a route which parallels the TransCanada Highway and spectacular Mount Rundle; or heading west along Vermilion Lakes to link up with the Bow Valley Parkway.
Difficulty: Easy / Family
Starting points: Off Mt. Norquay Road, south of the Trans-Canada Highway
Length: 4.3 km one way
The Vermilion Lakes are a series of three shallow lakes surrounded by marshland - a rich oasis for wildlife. The ride along this narrow road provides classic views of Banff’s signature peak, Mount Rundle. There are small docks where you can relax with a snack and enjoy the view.
Lake Minnewanka Road
Starting points: Cascade Ponds, Lake Minnewanka Day-use Area, or the Banff Legacy Trail
Distance: 13.1 km
If you’re up for panoramic views and some fun hills, the Lake Minnewanka Road is a great option. This two-lane road is the gateway to many popular attractions, including Cascade Ponds, Bankhead, Two Jack Lake, Johnson Lake and, of course, Lake Minnewanka. Connect this ride with Tunnel Mountain Drive for a really scenic route.
2021 enhanced cycling offer: The Minnewanka Loop Road will be closed to public vehicles Monday to Thursday, from May 1-20, 2021. During this closure, the road will be available to cyclists for the entirety of the Minnewanka Loop beginning at the first T-junction. Vehicle parking for cyclists using the Minnewanka Loop is available at Cascade Ponds day-use area.
The Minnewanka Loop Road and day-use areas will be fully open to vehicles on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays during the 21-day seasonal cycling offer.
Tunnel Mountain Drive
Starting points: Central Park Parking Lot, west end of Buffalo Street
Distance: 10.7 km loop
Tunnel Mountain Drive contours the “Sleeping Buffalo” of Tunnel Mountain, offering great views due to its elevation. Access is from Buffalo Street in Banff and it climbs around the backside of Tunnel Mountain. If you want to make the ride longer, connect with the Banff Legacy Trail or Lake Minnewanka Road.
Bow Valley Parkway
Starting points: Trans-Canada Highway, 5.5 km west of the Mt. Norquay overpass and Banff Legacy Trail (West), or midpoint from Castle Junction.
Distance: 31 km Banff to Castle Junction
The Bow Valley Parkway winds its way through forest with open views of the Bow River and impressive peaks such as Castle Mountain. This active wildlife corridor offers many interpretative exhibits, trailheads for hiking, picnic areas and campgrounds.
2021 enhanced cycling offer: The eastern section of the Bow Valley Parkway from the junction of the Bow Valley Parkway and Highway 93 South to Fireside day-use area will continue to be closed to public vehicles throughout the summer of 2021 to provide an enhanced cycling experience. Cyclists planning to use the Bow Valley Parkway should park at the Town of Banff Fenlands Recreation Centre or Train Station parking lots. Both are accessible via the Norquay Road entrance to the townsite
Also in effect for the Bow Valley Parkway is the annual seasonal travel restriction. This restriction is in effect starting March 1 to June 25. Travel of any kind (vehicles, cyclists and walkers) is not permitted from 8 pm to 8 am in order to give wildlife the space they need to thrive in spring at crucial times of day.
Starting point: Lake Louise Visitor Info Centre
Distance: 48km, Lake Louise to Bow Summit
Rated one of the world’s great scenic highways by National Geographic, the Icefields Parkway is a journey through expansive mountain wilderness, ancient glaciers, sweeping valleys, and mountain lakes of every shade of blue. Popular stops include Crowfoot Glacier, Bow Lake and Peyto Lake near Bow Summit. Multi-day options include continuing north towards the Columbia Icefield and Jasper. Amenities are available at historic Num-Ti-Jah Lodge.
Moraine Lake Road
Starting point: Moraine Lake Road off Lake Louise Drive
Distance: 15km one way
Climb your way up to Moraine Lake via Moraine Lake Road, which offers breath-taking views of the Valley of the Ten Peaks and the famed lake itself. This road is best cycled early or late in the day when car traffic is lower.