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Cycle the Canadian Rockies: Jasper & Banff

This is the stuff dreams are made of – snow-dusted peaks, turquoise lakes, glittering glaciers and vibrant forests. For many, the Canadian Rockies are only admired out of coach windows, but if you really want to get to the heart of the region and experience it at its very best, a bicycle is your best bet. This six-day cycling adventure is led by a local and kicks off from Calgary before venturing on to Banff National Park, Lake Louise, the Icefields Parkway and Jasper National Park. Challenging and rewarding, your rides deliver in big views and memorable moments.

6 days, from


per person


12 people max


Trip code: SSXR
Style: Original
Theme: Cycling


Countries Visited:  Canada
Accommodation: Simple Hotel/Motel (3 nights), Lodge (1 night), Hostel (1 night)
Transportation: Bicycle (e-bike option available , subject to availability) , Support vehicle
Included Meals:

  • 5 breakfasts

Group size: Minimum 2, Max 12

  • Set your wheels in motion in Calgary, a fun-filled and bike-friendly city. Join your local leader and pedal past important landmarks and local hotspots.

  • Discover the awe-inspiring landscapes of Banff National Park on two wheels, taking in rivers, lakes, viewpoints and the historic Fairmont Banff Springs resort.

  • Follow the famed Icefields Parkway, one of the world’s most scenic roads. Exploring in your vehicle and on your bike means you’ll experience all the parkway’s most stunning spots.

  • Pedal through forests and along the Bow River to the turquoise waters of Lake Louise, the jewel of the Canadian Rockies and a sight that makes all your efforts worth it!

  • Be blown away by Jasper National Park, where your cycling routes takes you on a 40km downhill from Maligne Lake to Jasper, plus a walk in Maligne Canyon.


Show Full Itinerary

Day 1: Calgary

Welcome to the Canadian Rockies! Your adventure begins in Calgary, a city that delivers in stunning scenery, cool shops and lively restaurants. A welcome meeting will take place at midday (12pm) where you’ll be briefed on the activities ahead and meet your local leader and fellow cyclists. Undertake a short bike fit and instruction, then it’s time for a short but enjoyable introduction ride around this remarkably bike-friendly city. The mostly flat 16-mile (25km) ride will take you along city streets and past icons such as the Calgary Tower and Studio Bell before following the quiet bike paths that flank the calm waters of the Bow River. Explore Prince’s Park Island and cross the unusually-shaped Peace Bridge, then cycle the thriving Kensington Village area, perhaps stopping at one of its many cafes for refreshments before returning to the serene and traffic-free Bow River Pathway. Follow the path as it winds its way downstream, past St George’s Island, before recrossing the river and heading back into the heart of the city. The rest of the afternoon is free for your own explorations of Calgary. Opt to retrace your tyre tracks and chill out in Prince's Island Park, head up the Calgary Tower for great views or learn a new sport at Canada Olympic Park – the choice is yours. In the evening perhaps head for dinner at one of the city's great restaurants.

For those arriving early there are a number of optional activities close by to Calgary for you to enjoy, including the uniquely named Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump.

Day 2: Cycle Banff

After a leisurely breakfast, drive east from Calgary to Banff (approximately 1.5 hours), Canada’s most famous mountain resort town. The drive is a highlight in itself – follow the Trans-Canada Highway from the windswept flat plains into the epic mountain scenery of the Rocky Mountains, arriving to Banff National Park. Settle into your hotel then head out for a ride through this truly iconic landscape. At 11 miles (17kms) today is a relatively short and gentle ride as you cycle the small roads and trails beside the now fast flowing Bow River to the dramatic Bow Falls Viewpoint. Take in the view, then duck away from the crowds and cross the Spray River on a loop ride of the picturesque Banff Springs Golf Course. The quiet trail – often frequented by wild deer - meanders through the forest and lesser-known parts of the Bow River. Loop back up to the famed Fairmont Banff Springs, Canada's "Castle in the Rockies", for a close-up view of this historic hotel. Soak in the ambiance at any of the cafes then choose between cycling back into Banff or adding some extra distance (and elevation gain in at the same time) by opting to ride up Tunnel Mountain Rd. Either way you’ll have ample time to explore this lovely town.. You may like to dive into the culture of the Rockies at the Whyte Museum, while away the evening in one of the town’s fabulous restaurants, or (season permitting) hike the steel catwalks of Johnston Canyon.

Day 3: Banff - Cycle Lake Minnewanka

Wake up and breathe in the fresh mountain air, then it’s back on your bike for an especially memorable ride. Take to the vehicle-free Banff Legacy Trail and weave gradually uphill past Two Jack Lake and up to the deep blue glacial waters of Lake Minnewanka. Named ‘Water of the Spirits’ in the traditional Nakoda/Stoney language, this awe-inspiring lake flanked by the 10,000ft high Mount Aylmer is the perfect backdrop to any ride. Perhaps enjoy an optional loop walk out to Stewart Canyon then enjoy a gradual 5-mile (8km) descent back towards Banff where you can either choose to rest up, explore, or add to your cycling day with a hilly ride along the spectacular Tunnel Mountain Road past the aptly named Surprise Corner – the view over the river canyon and the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel is stunning - as it follows the flanks of the imposing Tunnel Mountain before dropping back down
The rest of the evening is free for you to rest up or further explore Banff. If your cycling has inspired an appetite, get your hands on a Beaver Tail, deep-fried sweet dough resembling the shape of a beaver’s tail. Order a classic cinnamon and sugar or go wild with some whipped cream and Nutella (thank us later!).

Day 4: Cycle Banff to Lake Louise

Prepare yourself for an unforgettable ride as you set out on the flat roads and trails that run alongside the Vermillion Lakes, where weather permitting, the outline of the jagged Mount Rundle reflected in the lakes is simply breathtaking. From here ride alongside the legendary Icefields Parkway. The world-renowned roadway between Jasper and Banff stretches through a country of rugged mountaintops and past a hundred ancient glaciers, and you’ll enjoy the best of it by bike. Starting at the Vermillion Lakes, pass under the busy Trans-Canada Highway and instead cycle the quiet Bow Valley Parkway. Traffic is slowed to a maximum of 37mph (60kph), so it’s relatively vehicle-free, leaving you free to enjoy some of the most scenic landscapes Canada has to offer. Follow the serpentine Bow River on a gentle uphill ride through sun-dappled forest filled with wildlife, stopping off at Castle Mountain, the halfway point of the ride. Drop into the General Store for supplies and enjoy a break in this show-stopping spot before continuing through the inspiring landscape. Pause at Morant’s Curve for one of the most unmissable views in the Rockies – the railway line below you gently curves towards the spectacular Mount Fairview and the surrounding mountains. If you can tear yourself away from this sight, it’s just a further 3 miles (5kms) to Lake Louise, the jewel of the Canadian Rockies. This picture-perfect turquoise, glacier-fed lake enclosed by snow-covered peaks and overlooked by the Fairmont chateau must be seen to be believed, and after packing up the bikes (and saving you a very steep uphill) we’ll drive down to the lakeshore for a close up look at this stunning destination. From here, rest your legs on the long but incredibly scenic drive along the Icefields Parkway (approximately 3 hours). Enjoy a brief stop to view the massive Athabasca Glacier before arriving at the beautiful Sunwapta Falls. Spend the night in a lodge in the heart of the largest National Park in the Canadian Rockies – the ideal place for people looking to unplug from the regular hectic pace of life and simply appreciate the stunning natural surroundings.

Day 5: Hike Maligne Canyon & Cycle Maligne Lake

Start today early with a short drive (approx. 35 miles/55 kms, 45 mins) to the stunning alpine town of Jasper. After dropping in your bags at the hotel it is time to swap your biking shoes to hiking shoes as we take a short transfer (15 mins) to the nearby Maligne Canyon for a short 2.3 mile hike in "most interesting canyon in the Canadian Rockies". This beautiful hike takes you past numerous waterfalls, gorges and springs as it ambles its way up to ‘6th Bridge’ before re-joining your vehicle for the drive up to the shimmering blue waters of Maligne Lake, the crown jewel of Jasper National Park.
Take in the beautiful view of this majestic lake then saddle up and enjoy a mostly downhill 30 mile (50km) ride as you descend through endless pine forests between dramatic mountains and past the mysterious Medicine Lake. Also known as ‘The Disappearing Lake’ to local First Nations people the lake waters disappear during the summer months, only to reappear 10 miles later at Maligne Canyon. Enjoy the rest of the descent then ride the flat road all the way back into Jasper.
The evening is yours to explore all the fantastic options Jasper has to offer and at the end of the day, perhaps meet your fellow travellers for one last meal to celebrate your cycling achievements.

Day 6: Jasper/Calgary

Enjoy a relaxed start to the day, then say goodbye to Jasper and take the now familiar drive back to Calgary (approximately 5 hours). The drive is the ideal time to put your feet up, reflect on where you’ve ridden and relive stories of your cycling adventure over the last five days. Arrive back to Calgary, at which point your journey comes to an end.