By Afton Aikens & Olivia Grecu
These gondola and chairlift rides promise peak rewards for little effort:
- Mount Norquay: The historic North American Chairlift glides to boardwalk views of Mount Rundle, the Banff townsite, the Bow and Spray valleys, and if you’re lucky, a resident bruin family.
- Banff Gondola: Soar up Sulphur Mountain for a 1-km boardwalk stroll to the Cosmic Ray Station National Historic Site.
- Lake Louise Gondola & Restaurant: Rise up Mount Whitehorn over grizzly habitat to an incredible Temple Mountain and Victoria Glacier view, and guided interpretive bear walks.
Does altitude give you an appetite? Each lift has dining options at the top.
For more active sightseeing, cycle the paved 27-km Legacy Trail between Banff and Canmore for a fresh air workout. Valleyview Picnic Area west of the Banff National Park East Gate boasts breathtaking Bow Valley and River vistas. In fall, aspen leaves blaze golden.
Banff’s Tunnel Mountain trails also offer easy and scenic mountain biking. Two loops from Tunnel Mountain Campground have minimal elevation and maximum views. Stop to savour Mount Rundle and Cascade Mountain, while keeping an eye out for elk and deer.
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