In partnership with Midas Canada

Explore Alberta’s Rockies from Edmonton to Canmore

There’s more to this prairie province than its prairies and peaks

Behemoth mountains, opalescent lakes, and roaring waterfalls make for a majestic endpoint in a road trip from Edmonton to Canmore. The Canadian Rockies inspire millions of visitors to make the trek to Western Alberta each year, primarily to visit Banff National Park. The natural beauty starts in Edmonton’s River Valley, while the city of Calgary offers a glittering urban landscape. 

As you continue toward Banff, peaks begin to dominate the skyline, and soon, you’ll find yourself amid them. Whether you camp inside the park, stay in the alpine village of Banff, or use the gateway town of Canmore as a base camp, you’ll find endless recreation in the Rockies. And don’t think winter weather shuts things down. This region comes to life with a new slate of activities as the seasons change.

Canadian Midas locations

Midas wants to help you get ready for your summer road trip, starting with your vehicle. Our techs can run a completely free Closer Look Vehicle Check. This in-depth visual inspection lets you know what needs fixing now and what can wait, so you can hit the road with confidence. 

Make the trip before the trip to Midas and get $20 off a full-synthetic oil change. Request your appointment at

A map showing all Midas locations in Canada

Walterdale Bridge in Edmonton, Alberta on sunny day


Big bison? A big mall? A big dome? Alberta’s capital city of Edmonton has a big list of things to do, places to see, and people to meet. It’s famous for its beautiful River Valley park system, which offers more than 160 kilometers of recreational trails, wildlife viewing, and city views (it’s a whopping 22 times bigger than New York City’s Central Park). The peaceful scenery may be a contrast to the city’s energetic neighborhoods, which feature world-class theaters, restaurants, and museums. Nicknamed “Canada’s Festival City,” Edmonton offers up big doses of its unique culture and sense of fun year round. 

Edmonton Neon Sign Museum

Bright lights, big city. Take a walk down memory lane at the Edmonton Neon Sign Museum. You’ll find bright neon signs that lit up storefronts, theaters, and railroads, together now on one street for your viewing pleasure. Every sign has a story, and maybe you’ll recognize a few. This free, outdoor attraction is open year round—and definitely worth a stop for photo ops with a neon glow.

Fort Edmonton Park

Located in the middle of Edmonton’s scenic River Valley, Fort Edmonton Park offers a journey through more than two centuries of life in Alberta. Visitors can tour an 1800s fort and walk along dusty roads, taking them through a quaint turn-of-the-century town to the good times of the 1920s. And if that wasn’t enough, you’ll also find a circus midway (complete with Ferris wheel), steam train, and pony rides—family fun is the heart of Fort Edmonton Park.

Pigeon Lake

As you make your way out of the city and into the open expanses, make a stop at Pigeon Lake, with jewel-toned waters ringed by pines. This recreational area is great for fishing, swimming, hiking, and more. The spirit of summer comes to life with sweet treats from a lakefront ice cream shop or an exhilarating boat ride. If a daytime stop isn’t enough, make a night of it. Pigeon Lake Provincial Park offers tent, RV, and yurt camping options.

Discovery Wildlife Park

Discovery Wildlife Park isn’t your average zoo. Why? You can get up close and personal with the animals. Take a picture with bears, walk with wolves, or feed the camels. Trainers are always present to help ensure safe interactions. The animals come to Discovery as orphans from the wild, unwanted pets, or from closed zoos. Visitors can learn about everything that goes into the animals’ rehabilitation—and what to do if you ever face one of these animals in the wild.

Bench overlooking skyline view of Calgary, Canada


As you make your way into Alberta’s largest city, you’ll spy the skyscrapers on the horizon. Soon, you’ll trade these silhouettes for mountain peaks. Of course, you could spend several days exploring all that Calgary has to offer, or you can swing through the city and continue south. 

Head to 17th Street for the town’s best shopping, take a ride to the top of Calgary Tower for views of the cityscape and beyond, or check out the respected Calgary Zoo. Public art, family fun, and cultural opportunities abound. The annual Calgary Stampede brings one of the world’s largest rodeos to town—and a full lineup of events—to celebrate the city’s cattle-wrangling roots.

Model Milk

Come for the food, but stay for the experience at this restaurant in downtown Calgary, located in a converted dairy building. Model Milk offers locally-sourced grub with an eye toward innovation. Elevated comfort foods, experimental cocktails, and local wines make up the menu, served in a trendy atmosphere. The rotating flavors of sorbet and pots de creme provide a sweet ending for your send off.

Heritage Park Historical Village

Take a step back in time to the 1800s at Canada’s largest living history museum. Heritage Park Historical Village has more than 200 exhibits and attractions showcasing the changes Western Canada experienced in a time of growth and industry. Gain insight into what the region was like for the First Nations people before the new arrivals. Offering the perfect balance of historical facts, adventure, discovery, and fun, the village offers something for the whole family. You’ll find interactive exhibits, costumed interpreters, working antiques, and more.

Aerial view of turquoise lake in Canada

Banff National Park

Brace yourself for an abundance of beauty. Located in the Canadian Rockies, Banff is Canada’s oldest national park, and it’s one of the world’s top destinations. This jaw-dropping landscape is home to towering mountain peaks, scenic valleys, tumbling waterfalls, and awe-inspiring glaciers. If there was a competition to find the most stunning view in the park, Lake Louise would be a top contender. The otherworldly turquoise waters are framed by snow-capped peaks. Trails and the Bow Valley Parkway wind through forests and meadows and along the waterways. Visitors can stay overnight in one of 14 campgrounds.

Grizzly House Restaurant

A day spent hiking and sightseeing will leave you with a big appetite. Located in Banff Village, Grizzly House has been in business for more than 55 years, offering up a unique array of fares, including escargots, elk steaks, and exotic meats like alligator and rattlesnake—but the true star of the show is the fondue. 

Cascades of Time Gardens

While the wild landscapes of the Rockies are phenomenal in their own right, manicured gardens also shine. Take a break from the bustling streets of downtown Banff with a visit to Cascades of Time Gardens. In late May-early September, the space fills with flowers, creating a kaleidoscope of colors set against the mountain peaks. The picturesque setting has a storybook quality, with stone bridges, winding walkways, and charming gazebos. 

Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel 

The Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel is a welcoming hotel, nicknamed the “Castle of the Rockies.” When you stay, you’ll feel like royalty, thanks to the ambiance, service, and, of course, the phenomenal views. Many suites have huge windows, making it possible to wake up with the beauty of the mountains at your fingertips. Be forewarned: The rates are as epic as the landscape. If you can’t swing a stay, check out the spa.  

Gondola ride in Banff National Park

Banff Gondola

Ready to feel on top of the world? The Banff Gondola will take you soaring to the top of Sulphur Mountain in 8 minutes, opening up to views of six mountain ranges. Hit the boardwalk to take in the full 360-degree panorama, or venture out on the ridge trails for a more adventurous journey. 

Sulphur Mountain Cosmic Ray Station

Though stunning, the landscape isn’t the only attraction, as you’ll also find a theater, interpretive center, and gift shops. Take your pick from several dining options, ranging from simple snacks to fine dining. Sulphur Mountain Cosmic Ray Station National Historic Site, located at the top of the mountain, is a fascinating stop to learn more about history and science.

Paddler on river in Canada amongst rocky peaks


If you’re looking for a place that’s jaw-droppingly gorgeous year round, you’ve officially found it. Home to many of the venues for the Winter Olympic Games in 1988, Canmore has been a vibrant community and a popular destination for outdoor lovers ever since. During the summer peak season, the awe-inspiring landscape is a backdrop for hiking, fishing, rock climbing, canoeing, golfing, and much more. In the colder winter months, these activities are replaced with skiing, ice skating, sledding, and snowshoeing, while the legendary views remain.

This road trip takes you through two of Alberta’s cities—and into some of its finest landscapes at Banff National Park. For more of the Canadian Rockies, continue north on the majestic Icefields Highway to Jasper National Park—the journey may be as divine as the destination. Though larger than Banff National Park, Jasper sees half the visitors, making it a quieter place to play in the peaks. Or, set out to find more of Alberta’s diverse landscapes. You might be surprised to find badlands, dinosaur fossils, and hoodoos in the regions beyond the Rockies.