Founded in 1890 as Laggan Station, Lake Louise was once a wild outpost at the end of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Today this hamlet, lake and the nearby area offer some of the finest hiking, skiing and site-seeing in the world.
Location: 55 km west of Banff, Alberta, on the Trans-Canada Highway / #1 (map)
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Lake Louise and Moraine Lake are the traditional summer highlights. Both offer gentle lakeshore trails and more ambitious hikes to hanging valleys and picturesque tarns. Across the valley, ride the summer gondola for panoramic views, or venture farther afield into the Skoki Valley backcountry. The Lake Louise area is also an excellent departure point for those wishing to explore the scenic Icefields Parkway (Hwy 93N).
Lake Louise and Moraine Lake are both fed by glaciers, giving the waters their brilliant turquoise hue.
While most visitors come for downhill skiing, the cross-country ski network in Lake Louise is extensive and varied with trackset options by mid-November. Bring your skates for December and enjoy breathtaking views on Lake Louise or visit later in January for ice carvings during the annual Ice Magic Festival.
Lake Louise is a magical spot in the winter with typically larger snow accumulations than around the Town of Banff.
Map of Lake Louise in Banff National Park © Parks Canada
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