Banff Journals

Canadian Rockies

A December 2005 trip to Banff by Pizzaman12

1886 Cafe Photo, Calgary, Alberta More Photos
Quote: An inspiring trip to the Canadion Rockies, including Banff, Lake Louise, and Jasper

Canadian Rockies

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Overview

Quote:
This was to be a quick trip for us, with stops in Calgary and Banff, two places we had never visited before. We traveled in the dead of winter. Calgary was an interesting city, although not one that requires a great deal of time to explore. The +15 was an easy way to get around, and very fun, dodging in and out of buildings. For informational purposes, the +15 is an elevated walkway that connects most of the downtown buildings to make it easier to navigate the city without freezing your butt off. Banff was a truly beautiful city, it almost felt like you were walking into a book. We had planned to take a day trip to Lake Louise, but were so enamored with the view when we got there, we checked out...Read More

Fairmont Banff Springs

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Hotel

Quote:
Having spent most of my adult life in hospitality, there are a few properties that I’ve read about over the years that have stuck out as must-sees. The Fairmont Banff Springs had been on that list for over 5 years before our visit.We arrived in the dead of winter, renting a SUV after flying into Calgary and driving into Banff. The hotel is located on the outskirts of a beautiful, isolated ski village in a national park.The hotel was one of the old CP railway properties that Fairmont took over, and they’ve done a good job renovating an historic property, maintaining its historic significance.We pulled up to the property, and our bags and car were whisked away. We entered ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 18, 2006

Fairmont Banff Springs
405 Spray Avenue
Banff, Alberta T1L1J4
(403) 762-2211

Saddledome Photo, Calgary, Alberta
Quote:
Well-located hotel in downtown Calgary. If you're planning on visiting downtown Calgary, this is a good jumping off spot. While the view is not special, the rooms are very nice. The staff is very accommodating.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 1, 2006

Sheraton Suites Calgary Eau Claire
255 Barclay Parade SW
Calgary, Alberta T2P5C2
(403) 266-7200

Maple Leaf Grill

Restaurant

Quote:
We had dined at a few places in Banff thusfar without a memorable experience. We were attracted to Maple Leaf because of its Wine Spectator award. As obvious tourists, we were seated at a table on the second floor overlooking Banff Avenue. The wines by the glass were outstanding. Our appetizers were good, but not great. We had a lobster cappuccino, which was imaginative, but not flavorful. However, our entrees were much more enjoyable. My wife enjoyed a duck dish with a beautifully seasoned cherry sauce, while I tried elk tenderloin for the first time. I did not find it overly gamey, and the rosemary demiglace that accompanied it was very enjoyable. The souffle I tried for dessert was above ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 29, 2005

Maple Leaf Grill
137 Banff ave
Banff, Alberta T1L
(403) 760-7680

Walliser Stube

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Restaurant

Quote:
This restaurant is located in the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. We were originally attracted to this restaurant because of its wine list, but ended up loving it for the fondue. The decor was reminiscent of a library, with beautiful mahogany and cherry wood. A small, quaint bar yielded way to a dining room, with subdued lighting, and 25 foot ceilings. Bookshelves and wine cabinets lined the walls with library ladders strategically placed. The tables were spaced far enough apart to foster a great sense of privacy. Most had a private window looking out into the secluded snow.This is definitely a great representation of Swiss cuisine. We started out with a glass of Sauvignon...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 2, 2006

Walliser Stube
Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise
Banff, Alberta
(403) 522-3791

1886 Cafe

Attraction

1886 Cafe Photo, Calgary, Alberta
Quote:
Awesome breakfast restaurant. Nestled in the shadow of Sheraton Suites Eau Claire, this small restaurant serves a GREAT breakfast. This is a must stop, both for the atmosphere and the food. The price is right, too.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on July 1, 2006

1886 Cafe
187 Barclay Parade SW
Calgary, Alberta T2P 4R5
+1 403 269 9255

Snowy Owl Sled Dog Tours

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Attraction

Quote:
This was truly one of the best experiences of my life. Snowy Owl was a recommendation from the Fairmont Banff Springs when we inquired about dogsledding, and they lived up to their reputation. We met the group and drove up the mountain in a snow that progressed from light to heavy throughout the morning. We had prepared ourselves with layers of clothing and boots, but the only part that ended up being cold were our hands. They paired us up in groups of two with their instructors, and gave us a few quick pointers. My wife and I were paired up with the daughter of the owners. We were introduced to all the dogs, including the matriarch, Shauni, and a very vivacious little guy named Tigger. ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on April 27, 2006

Snowy Owl Sled Dog Tours
#104-602 Bow Valley Trail
Canmore T1W 2T8
(403) 678-4369

Calgary Tower

Attraction

Calgary Tower Photo, Calgary, Alberta
Quote:
On the South side of town, a good quick stop to get a view of the city and surrounding mountains. Early morning was a great time to visit, with the sun gleaming off the mountains before the crowds descended.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 1, 2006

Calgary Tower
101 9th Ave SW
Calgary, Alberta T2P 1J9
+1 403 266 7171

Canada Olympic Park

Attraction

Canada Olympic Park Photo, Calgary, Alberta
Quote:
The Olympic Park features the ski jumps, luge and bobsled runs used in the '88 Winter Olympics. On good weather days, you can ride to the top of the ski jumps, or try your hand at bobsled or luge. Well worth the trip.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 1, 2006

Canada Olympic Park
88 Canada Olympic Road SW
Calgary, Alberta T3B 5R5
(403) 247-5452