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Top Banff Winter Sports

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In winter, Canada’s snow-blanketed Rocky Mountains are the perfect playground. Travelers to Banff National Park are spoiled for choice when it comes to winter adventures, with everything from horse-drawn sleigh rides to wildlife-watching hikes to world-class skiing on offer. See below for inspiration on Banff’s best winter activities. 

Sleigh Rides
The snowy surfaces of Alberta are perfectly suited to sleigh rides. Passengers in horse-drawn sleighs are given blankets to keep cozy as they streak across snowy meadows, admiring the views of the majestic mountains and valleys of Canada’s first national park.  
 
Wildlife Watching
With many of Banff’s resident animals descending from their high-ground summer retreats in winter, the cold season provides unexpected wildlife-watching opportunities. Of course grizzly bears will be in hibernation, but other species, such as mule deer and bighorn sheep, are active year-round. For the best chances of spotting wild animals, go with a guide who can also explain how these hardy creatures survive the harsh winter conditions of the Canadian Rockies.

Winter Hiking
Winter hiking in Banff National Park is the ultimate escape, and with so few tourists braving the elements, you’re more likely to have the trails all to yourself. Trek through the Johnston Canyon to see frozen waterfalls. Go as part of a guided tour and you’ll be given ice cleats and hiking poles to help you along.

Skiing and Snowboarding
It’s just a 10-minute drive from Banff to the powdery slopes of the Mt. Norquay ski resort, where around 60 runs cater to all levels, from new to experienced skiers. The resort, which is typically open from December through mid-April, also has snow tubing runs. Sunshine Village, a resort with more than 3,300 acres (1,335 hectares) of skiable terrain, and Lake Louise Ski Resort are also good options, being just 15 minutes and 40 minutes, respectively, from Banff town. For cross-country skiing, try the Fairview Trail or Pipestone Trails near Lake Louise.
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Athabasca Glacier Snow Trip from Banff

Athabasca Glacier Snow Trip from Banff

star-4.5
Enjoy this full-day tour from Banff, visiting the Athabasca Glacier and the stunning scenery lining the breathtaking Icefields Parkway. This tour travels halfway along the world-famous Icefields Parkway, recognized as one of the top drives in the world passing numerous Rocky Mountain peaks, glaciers, waterfalls, and emerald lakes. Your tour also includes round-trip transport from Banff, a mountain picnic lunch, Glacier Skywalk, and an all-terrain Ice Explorer tour.
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  • 11 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$216.63
From
$216.63
Taking safety measures

Columbia Icefields

Aaron was our guide, he was very knowledgeable and added lots of interesting points, re native tribes in the area.

Cruiser20703977919, Sep 2019

9 Banff Winter Sports | All Banff Tours

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Banff Performance Ski Rental Including Delivery

Banff Performance Ski Rental Including Delivery

star-5
Nestled below the peaks of Mt. Rundle and Mt. Cascade, Banff is widely considered among the finest ski resorts in Canada—and the equipment rental queues can be long. With this ski, pole, and boot hire service—geared toward learner skiers—order your kit in advance and beat the queues. Reach the slopes faster with in-house fitting at your accommodation, and relax with slope-side servicing included.
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  • 2 to 14 days
  • Free Cancellation
From
$75.71
From
$75.71

Banff Premium Ski Rental Including Delivery

Banff Premium Ski Rental Including Delivery

star-5
Located within the spectacular Rocky Mountain Range, Banff attracts skiers from across the world to its snowy slopes—and the equipment rental queues can be long. With this ski, pole, and boot hire service—aimed at advanced skiers skiers—reserve your high-spec skis in advance and avoid the waiting lines. Hit the pistes faster with in-house fitting at your condo, and enjoy peace-of-mind with slope-side servicing included.
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  • 2 to 14 days
  • Free Cancellation
From
$92.17
From
$92.17

Banff Performance Snowboard Rental Including Delivery

Banff Performance Snowboard Rental Including Delivery

star-5
Dominated by the peaks of Mt. Rundle and Mt. Cascade, Banff ranks among the most popular ski resorts in Canada—and the equipment rental queues can be long. With this snowboard and boot hire service—geared toward beginner boarders—order your kit in advance and reach the slopes faster. With fitting at your accommodation plus slope-side servicing included, you can hit the snow knowing your rental equipment is covered.
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  • 2 to 14 days
  • Free Cancellation
From
$75.71
From
$75.71

Banff Premium Snowboard Rental Including Delivery

Banff Premium Snowboard Rental Including Delivery

With diverse terrain and spectacular valley views, Banff ranks among the finest ski resorts in Canada—but the equipment rental queues can be long. With this snowboard and boot hire service—geared toward experienced riders—reserve your snowboard equipment in advance and reach the slopes faster. With in-house fitting at your condo plus piste-side servicing included, you can hit the slopes knowing your rental equipment is fully covered.
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  • 2 to 14 days
  • Free Cancellation
From
$92.17
From
$92.17

Private ACMG Ski & split-board guide

Private ACMG Ski & split-board guide

star-5
Explore the Banff National Park back country on skis or splitboard with certified Association of Canadian Mountain Guides. With years of training and local knowledge the Alpine Air Adventures guides will lead you the best touring locations, with safety as a primary detail on any given day. Learn from the local experts and ski/ride some epic powder!
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  • 1 day 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$215.92
Price varies by group size
From
$215.92
Price varies by group size

Learn to Cross Country Ski in Lake Louise

Learn to Cross Country Ski in Lake Louise

Beginners can book these cross-country ski lessons amidst the stunning scenery of the Canadian Rockies. With a small group of just four people or fewer, you'll get personalized attention from your guide as you learn a new skill. Practice how to fall down, get back up, glide, and stop on a pristine snowy trail with other beginners.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$68.77
From
$68.77
Taking safety measures

Experience Ice Climbing

Experience Ice Climbing

star-5
The Ice Experience program is designed to allow people of all abilities to experience the exciting sport of waterfall ice climbing. Our guides are incredible instructors, skilled climbers, and fun to be around. They are certified to the highest standards in the industry by the ACMG/IFMGA, so you can rest assured that you are in good hands.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$133.23
From
$133.23

Introduction to Backcountry Skiing / Riding

Introduction to Backcountry Skiing / Riding

Our guides are incredible instructors, fun to be around, and have a vast wealth of experience skiing and riding in the backcountry. They are certified to the highest standards in the industry by the ACMG/IFMGA. Skiing and riding safely in complicated mountain terrain requires a lot of experience and proper mentorship. We are here to ensure you start off in the right direction.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$93.27
From
$93.27

Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are the best Winter Sports in Banff?
Q:
What tours in Banff are taking additional safety precautions?
A:
These Banff experiences are providing additional COVID-19 safety measures:
See all tours in Banff on Viator.
Q:
What tours in Banff are good for avoiding crowds?