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Ice Magic

Ice Skating, Lake Louise, Banff National Park
Travel Alberta

A World-Class Ice Carving Event

January 15 - 26, 2020

A perfectly magical winter experience awaits you in Lake Louise where ice serves as a fascinating medium of artistry and architectural design. Watch incredible ice carvings take shape under the precise hands of skilled artists from around the world. Marvel at the lustre of these frozen forms, as well as the iconic ice castle sparkling in front of the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, throughout SnowDays.

Winter in Canada is something to celebrate! Watch the alpine town of Lake Louise come alive during the 12-day Ice Magic ice carving exhibition. Walk through a winter wonderland and explore ice castles, ice bars, and ice carvings at the iconic Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. From the International Ice Carving Competition, to the One Hour, One Carver, One Block speed event, there's lots to see and do in Lake Louise this January. 

The best way to experience Ice Magic is to stay in Lake Louise. Tickets are included with an overnight stay at the following accommodations:

Ticket Information

There are many ways to enjoy Ice Magic in 2020.  Find all the details about tickets and exclusive access here. 

It is free to attend Ice Magic from Monday - Friday and on the weekends before 10 a.m. or after 5:30 pm.

Tickets are required to visit the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise lakeside Competition Carving Site during peak periods. Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. are considered peak visitation periods. Access prices vary depending on which type of visitor category you fall into. 

Please read the information below to determine which category is applicable to you.  

General Admission: $13
Seniors (55+): $8
Youth (3-12yrs): $6
Infants (under 2): Free
Family (2 adults & up to 4 youth): $35

Lake Louise Overnight Guests - Free Admission

      Guests who book one of the partner hotels, listed below, in Lake Louise have free access to the lakeside Competition Carving Site at all times. A wristband grants you access even when tickets are required.

      Banff Overnight Guests - Save 60%

      Overnight guests at Banff accommodations (includes B&Bs) receive discounted ticket prices to the Competition Carving Site when tickets are required. Tickets must be booked online with the special code that is given to guests from their hotel upon booking. 

      Day Visitors - Online Purchase - Save up to 25% 

      A limited number of tickets are available on weekends for day visitors to attend Ice Magic. If tickets are purchased in advance online (limited availability), visitors can save up to 25%. Discounted online sales will close 48 hours before each day. We encourage day visitors to attend on weekdays, and weekends before 10 a.m. and after 5:30 p.m., when admission is free.

      Day Visitors - Onsite Purchase - Full Price

      A limited number of onsite tickets are available on weekends for day visitors to attend Ice Magic. Note that weekdays and weekends before 10 a.m. and after 5:30 p.m. are free.


      Best Times to Visit

      Ice Magic only comes around once a year, and with such a well-loved event you'll want to make sure you know all of the insider tips to plan your trip. 

      Meet the Carvers

      If you come Thursday, January 16 or Friday, January 17 while the competition is running not only will admission be free, but the ice carvers will have more time to answer all your burning questions. On Friday afternoon the competition concludes with an exhilirating one hour speed carving event from 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. followed by the awards ceremony.

      The Mid-Week Advantage

      Visit the finished sculptures mid-week for free and create fond memories of Lake Louise with no crowds, ample parking, and better photo opportunities.

      Explore the Sculptures After Dark

      Catch a glimpse of the sculptures under the light of the night sky. The best photos are taken at night when the sculptures are lit up and the mountain peaks create faint silouettes in the background.

      The Perfect Winter Day Trip

      Arrive early at Lake Louise and experience the ice carvings at sunrise, then make your way to Banff to view massive snow sculptures right downtown as part of SnowDays

      Shuttles and Transit

      With limited parking available near the Competition Carving Site, visitors are encouraged to take the free shuttle buses from Samson Mall. During peak visitation on weekends, day visitors will be required to park in the village and take shuttles. Please plan your visit accordingly. 

      • Shuttles are available on January 18, 19, 25 and 26 from 10:30 a.m. –  6 p.m.
      • The shuttles go between Samson Mall and Upper Lake Louise parking area. They return approximately every 20 minutes, wait times will increase during peak visitation from around 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. 
      • Shuttles start at Samson Mall at 10:30 a.m. and the last shuttles leave Upper Lake Louise parking area at 6 p.m.
      • Parking is limited, carpooling to the shuttle pickup site is encouraged.
      • If you're staying in Banff, the easiest way to get to Lake Louise is to take transit. A new local route is operating between Banff and Lake Louise this winter.
      • Sorry, no pets allowed on the shuttles.

      The Perfect Day at Ice Magic

      Ice Magic is an amazing time to embrace the wonders of winter. See what a perfect day exploring the spectacular setting of Lake Louise looks like.

      Visit Ice Magic early in the morning before the crowds show up, then use the rest of the day to play in the outdoors. Pick up a lift ticket from the Lake Louise Ski Resort and hit the slopes or simply view the breathtaking landscape from the top of the Gondola. Explore the Lake Louise area on a guided snowshoe tour with Great Divide Nature Interpretation, the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, or the Lake Louise Ski Resort. Enjoy the groomed cross-country ski trails near Baker Creek Mountain Resort. Or race your friends down the tubing runs at the Lake Louise Ski Resort Sunny Tube Park.

      Winter Cross Country Skiing Great Divide Trail Lake Louise Noel Hendrickson

      2019 Ice Magic Festival Winners

      Ice Magic Festival presents the winners of the International Ice Carving Competition.

      Check out all the winning ice sculptures

      Share your photos #mybanff

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