After sitting at desk for months studying for two different 8-hour-long board exams, I was ready to get outside, fill my lungs with fresh air, hike through the beautiful mountains, and soak in allll the sun! So I packed my bags and flew to Banff, Alberta, Canada with two of my best friends!
I take my GoPro on every trip, because it’s the easiest way for me to document all the memories without having to stop and take a picture. I just keep the video rolling (I have a ton of storage on my SD card) and (quite literally) throw the camera to my friends as we hike and explore. I love this approach of filming because it doesn’t require much skill, and you don’t have to pause what you’re doing. I have my GoPro in a life-proof case so it’s super durable and can withstand pretty much anything from water to dropping it on the rocks. Then I compile my favorite clips into a short video to make it easy to look back on each trip. Take a look at the one below to see a glimpse of our Banff trip!
We flew out of Houston, TX into Calgary, Alberta, Canada (Calgary International Airport, YYC). We didn’t arrive until about 11PM, and then still needed to rent a car. So by the time we did all that and drove to our Airbnb in Banff, it was almost 3AM! But our Airbnb host was so sweet and waited up for us, welcoming us with some fresh homemade food.
Usually I would stop at a grocery store immediately upon arrival wherever I am traveling, but since it was so late when we got in, we just went straight to our Airbnb. As soon as we woke up the next morning though, we drove to the grocery store. If you’re driving from Calgary to Banff, I’d suggest grocery shopping in the city of Canmore since you’ll drive right through it. There are actually plenty of grocery stores all around, but Canmore tends to be less expensive than Banff.
Get the All Trails app! I have created a list of awesome trails in and near Banff National Park – some are slightly outside of the park, but easily reachable with a close drive! You can choose which trails you want to do based on length, difficulty, location, etc. (This is not sponsored. I just loved using this app to find trails and thought it was an easy way to share them with y’all!)
One of my favorite things about Canada in the summer is that it doesn’t get dark until about 10pm. Time seemed to be completely irrelevant – it didn’t matter how early or late in the morning we left our Airbnb, because it was always bright outside. By the time we even thought about dinner (because we often lost track of time completely), I was crazy tired and couldn’t bare sitting down at a restaurant or anything. Thank goodness we grocery shopped at the beginning of the trip and had a bunch of food back at the Airbnb.
The sun rises around 5:30am in Banff during the summer, but to be completely honest, we didn’t see one sunrise because we were just doing exactly what we wanted when we wanted. AKA no alarm clock. Plus, we were getting back so late every night since it didn’t get dark until late. So we enjoyed our sleep and our slow coffee mornings.
Banff was one of the most beautiful places I have ever been! Lake Moraine and Lake Louise are the most well known lakes, but honestly, all lakes in the area are drop dead gorgeous! Most of them are glacially fed, which makes for stunning clear blue water! It also makes for really cold water year round 😂 Unless you visit one of the local hot springs – one of my favorite experiences was Lussier Hot Springs!
If you’ve visited Banff National Park or any other Canadian wilderness wonderland, leave a comment with your experiences or suggestions! I’d love to hear them.
“Mountains have a way of dealing with overconfidence.”
~ Nemann Buhl