If you're dreaming of a mountain summer with every adventure under the rainbow, look no further than Lake Louise (Ho-run-num-nay, or "Lake of the Little Fishes"). Paddle on turquoise waters, hike among colourful wildflowers, or clip-clop your way to mountain or glacier views; there's no shortage of ways to have a vibrant day here, so plan ahead and make the most of every moment.
Public transit offers the most seamless journey to Lake Louise. Start your day aboard Roam Transit's 8X service from the Banff High School, or book your seat on a Parks Canada shuttle departing from the Lake Louise Summer Gondola - which is the perfect excuse for a scenic trip to the top on your way home!
If it's more convenient to drive your own vehicle, bear in mind that lakeshore parking requires payment from 7:00 am to 7:00 pm and can fill up quickly—sometimes before sunrise. You'll have the best chance at parking and a day filled with activities when you set your alarm early. Or, visit later in the day if you're keen to spend time with the lakeshore views.
Sightseeing tours are an excellent alternative for guaranteed access to the lake. Maximize your day with a tour that includes additional stops at Banff's must-see locations like Johnston Canyon and Moraine Lake along the way.
There's no better feeling than catching your first glimpse at those dazzling shades of turquoise when you arrive, but your next adventures will come very close. One of the best things about Lake Louise is that there's truly something for everyone, whether you're a cruisey sightseer, an avid hiker, making a quick visit, or exploring for the day.
If you're here to soak up the view at a relaxed pace, start with a picturesque stroll. Fairview Lookout is a gentle walk to a spectacular viewpoint of the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise fronting brilliant colours, or follow the Lakeshore Trail to discover a beautiful perspective from the back of the lake.
Get a little closer to the scenery by visiting the Lake Louise Boathouse to explore the waters by canoe, or booking a horseback tour with Timberline Tours or Brewster Adventures for an effortless trot to the Lake Agnes Tea House and beyond.
For those craving a day on the trails, enjoy world-class hiking to Little Beehive, Big Beehive, or the Plain of Six Glaciers Tea House. If you're feeling more adventurous, trek your way to Saddleback Pass or the summit of Mount Fairview to experience the opposite side of the lake.
You'll be spoiled for choice of summertime après at the Lake Louise village. Stop in for mouthwatering goodies at bakeries and cafes, sweets at the candy store, or treat yourself to something special from the unique stores.
Feeling those sunny patio vibes? Enjoy a delicious meal in the sun at the Station Restaurant, or ride the Lake Louise Summer Gondola for an elevated patio experience at Whitehorn Bistro before making your way back home.
Whether you're sightseeing, canoeing, horse riding, hiking, or enjoying the view from a patio, plan your day ahead to make the most of every activity and your mountain summer at Lake Louise.
Ready to make the most of your visit to Lake Louise? Use our Trip Planner to help you create the perfect itinerary for your getaway!