Preparing For Your Canadian Adventure

Time of year: late June through September
Getting there: Fly into Vancouver International Airport
Getting around: Public transit works well for the 3 days in Vancouver (in fact, recommended). However, getting a vehicle for the Journey to the Rockies and during your time in the Rockies is necessary. 
Lodging: Campsites, BnB's, Hotels, Lodges, Cabins, Hostels

 
 

Day 1 GRANVILLE ISLAND, KITSILANO BEACH, AND ROBSON STREET/COAL HARBOUR WALK

The best first day in Vancouver is one that is flexible and works rain or shine (since Vancouver is likely to be rain!). Make your time at Granville Island and Kitsilano Beach brief if you are arriving later in the day or stretch it out to be a full day.

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Take a Sea Taxi to Granville Island (Granville Island is open 7 days a week, 9am-7pm). Both, False Creek Ferries and Aquabus (Vancouver's two sea taxi companies) have docks at Yaletown, David Lam Park, and Aquatic Centre/West End, which are great starting points. 

At Granville Island, check out the Granville Island Public Market, the Net Loft (artisan stores), and the stores along Duranleau Street. Granville Island has lots of options for lunch and gifts/souvenirs. The Granville Island website is great for making further recommendation based on your interests.

Walk from Granville Island along the seawall to Kitsilano Beach/Pool.
Option to continue walking past the Kitsilano Pool until you get to Volunteer Park (one of my favorite walks with a coffee in hand). 

Then, walk back the way you came to Vanier Park/Maritime Museum, where you can take the False Creek Ferry to return to downtown or a local bus (the 2 or 22 goes from the Kitsilano area to downtown).

Relax at your accommodation or a park (David Lam Park is great in nice weather) before an evening walk down Robson Street and around Coal Harbour.

Map

Rainy Day Alternative

Exploring on Granville Island works well for a rainy day since it is partly indoors and most of the walkways in the city are covered so the walk later in the day would still be possible (you will be surprised how many people will still be out enjoying the day despite poor weather).

However, since Granville Island can be done fairly quickly and the suggested walk to the beach might not be appealing, indoor options for activities include:
1. Fly Over Canada to peak your senses.
2. Niobe Memorial Gardens (a traditional Japanese garden) and Anthropology Museum (at UBC) for a cultural experience.
3. Vancouver Art Gallery (entry by donation on Tuesday’s from 5pm to 9pm).
4. Indoor sports including beach volleyball, badminton, bowling, TBC Indoor Racing, and more are all available in the suburb, Richmond (30 minute drive or Skytrain from downtown).
5. Painting or ceramic class at 4Cats Art Studio.

Food and Lodging

Food:
Lunch:
1. Go Fish (between Granville Island and Kitsilano)- Amazing locals spot to grab the best Fish and Chips.
2. Local (Kitsilano)- Fun patio with great fish tacos and brunch.
3. Sandbar (Granville Island)- Amazing views from the upstairs patio.
4. Sprig Contemporary Greek Kitchen (Granville Island)- Best for vegan/vegetarian.

Dinner/Drinks:
1. Cactus Club Coal Harbour- This location has beautiful views and a very "Vancouver" vibe. 
2. Banana Leaf (Robson Street)- Top notch Malaysian food. I order the Assam Tofu and Vegetable Curry with Coconut Rice.
3. Reflections (Rosewood Hotel Georgia's rooftop)- Upscale place for drinks. 

Lodging: (for the 3 nights spent in Vancouver)
1. (High-end): Fairmont Pacific Rim
2. (Moderate): Moda Hotel or try AirBnB
3. (Budget): HI Vancouver Downtown

Day 2 BIKE THE STANLEY PARK SEAWALL THEN CONTINUE ALL THE WAY TO FALSE CREEK

Biking the Stanley Park seawall is likely on the to-do list of every person visiting Vancouver, but they often miss out on the AMAZING seawall that continues on to False Creek! In this itinerary, if you're up for a longer bike ride, you will be rewarded!

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Make your way to Spokes bike rentals on West Georgia and Denman to rent a bike and complete an epic bike ride of the city. The city also has a bike rental option, Mobi, which is a cheaper option, but it is built more as a mode of transportation (a 24 hour pass with the Mobi bike costs $10 where Spokes costs $30 for a 3-6 hour rental, but with Mobi, you have to check in the bike to the nearest station every 30 minutes). Mobi is also not as good for photos.

If you want to make the ride shorter than what is shown on the map (and only do Stanley Park), you would finish your ride after reaching the Stanley Park Pool and take Lagoon Drive to get back to where you started (the cross streets of Denman and West Georgia).

A great spot to stop during the ride for a snack/picnic is Third Beach. (There is a drum circle here on Tuesday nights during the summer if it's not raining).

An epic shot can be taken of the seawall (from above) by biking part of the Lions Gate Bridge. Either before or after your bike ride, continue West along West Georgia Street (towards Stanley Park) and over the bridge until you see the shot you like. 

End the night in Yaletown, a cool Vancouver neighborhood, packed with restaurants and shops. 

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Rainy Weather Alternative

If you are able to postpone this day for when there will be better weather, do so! If not, take a drive around Stanley Park. It won't be the same, but at least you will see it! If you don't have a car, start from the cross streets of Denman and West Georgia street and walk towards Stanley Park along the harbour. It is beautiful rain or shine. 

And then, whether you drove around or walked to Stanley Park, spend the day exploring the inner parts of Stanley Park, which most people don't do. There is a rose garden, a really impressive Aquarium, and lots of other things to discover if you grab a map at the tourism desk located there. The massive trees in the park will provide cover from the rain and it will feel like an enjoyable forest walk. 

Additional indoor activities are listed in Day 1’s Rainy Day Alternative.

Food

Lunch: Choose from the following options along Howe or Hornby Street, which you will take towards the end of the bike ride.
1. Firecrust- Best for vegan/vegetarian. My favorite make-your-own pizza is with olive oil and red sauce, basil, house made vegan cheese, mushrooms, tomatoes, olives, red onions, artichokes, jalopenos, and arugula on top!
2. Pokerrito- Best for sushi/poke lovers. I recommend the Diamond Head Burrito (spicy tuna).

Dinner: (In Yaletown)
1. Banter Room- Has something for everyone (including vegan/vegetarian). Lounge vibe. 
2. Freshbowl Yaletown- Most affordable option. I recommend either the yellow or green curry with flat noodles or the laksa if no dietary restrictions. 
3. Bistro Sakana- Affordable sushi option.
4. Minami- Upscale sushi option. 
5. Flying Pig- Upscale restaurant. Wouldn't recommend for vegan/vegetarian diets. 
6. MeeT in Yaletown- A popular vegan chain in Vancouver.  I recommend the Double Double Veggie Burger.

Drinks:
1. The Keg (Yaletown)- Amazing roof top bar (rain or shine).

Day 3 SPEND THE DAY OUTSIDE AND EXPLORE GASTOWN AT NIGHT

A couple days in the city is all you need. Spend the third day in getting outside to see what really makes Vancouver special! I've listed four options to choose between or pick a couple if you have the full day!

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Option 1: Explore Lynn Canyon and Deep Cove

Drive or transit to Lynn Canyon Park.

Explore the (free) Lynn Canyon suspension bridge and walk down to Twin Falls (a popular swimming spot for locals). I prefer the authentic and smaller Lynn Canyon suspension bridge to the popular and expensive Capilano Suspension Bridge because you don't feel like you're JUST doing a tourist attraction with a million other people. If you were to pay for one, do Option 3- you get a gondola ride, an amazing view of the Howe Sound, an impressive suspension bridge, and options for hikes from that point. 

Then, head to Deep Cove (about an hour by transit).

From there, hike the short Quarry Rock trail or kayak Indian Arm. If you choose to kayak, camping on one the islands would be an excellent way to see more of Indian Arm.

Option 2: Beach Day at Wreck Beach (Nude Beach on UBC's Campus)

Take transit to UBC campus. Walk across campus to the Wreck Beach Trail. Option to check out the Rose Garden viewpoint and the Nitobe Memorial Garden (traditional Japanese garden) (check prices and hours ahead of time) while on the campus.

Take 500+ stairs down through the lush rainforest to a very hippy-vibe beach (especially in the Summer). People opting to go nude stay on the left side of the beach.

Option 3: Sea to Sky Gondola and Suspension Bridge

Purchase the shuttle/gondola package ($69 roundtrip) if you do not have a vehicle.

Option to do the Sky Pilot hike from the summit. 

Option 4: A hike on the North Shore to St Marks Summit

This hiking option is all about taking advantage of great hiking within a 30-40 min drive of the city by heading to the North Shore (just don't get stuck in afterwork traffic on the way back to Downtown)!

Many websites mention the Grouse Grind as one of the top things to do in the city, but the Grouse Grind and the Chief are overrated hikes that locals do as a workout, not to see the utmost of British Columbia scenery.

Instead, I recommend St Marks Summit for the view of the Howe Sound! This hike is part of the multi-day hike called the Howe Sound Crest. The Howe Sound Crest requires two vehicles since you will finish near Lions Bay along the Sea to Sky Highway (so I don't recommend it in this itinerary). But, if you wanted to make a full day out of it, you are welcome to go further than St Marks Summit to Unnecessary Mountain (what a name!) or to the base of the West Lion. I've done this all in one day and I'd recommend starting early. 

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Rainy Weather Alternative

If you see the forecast ahead of time and are able to move things around to spend the rainy day doing day 1's itinerary, do so. If not, I'd still opt to complete option 1 of this day's itinerary. You will go over the Lions Gate Bridge from downtown Vancouver, explore a beautiful suspension bridge, and also check out the charming town, Deep Cove. I wouldn't recommend the hike or kayak trip from Deep Cove, so once you finish seeing this area, continue driving/take public transport to Lighthouse Park- a nice network of trails with no elevation gain. Exploring the trails, you will walk to water level, see a lighthouse, and great views of the city. For someone seeing Vancouver for the first time, this isn't one of those jaw-dropping views, but it is worth checking out and doesn't have you doing anything dangerous in poor conditions. 

If the weather is absolutely horrible, something indulgent might be to make a spa day of it. The Scandinav Spa in Whistler is an experience in itself- outdoor hot and cold pools, outdoor sauna and steam room, and definitely the best massage I've ever had. (See Add-on 1, option 2)

After a full day outside, walk around Gastown at night to experience the oldest streets in Vancouver with lots of souvenir shops, bars, restaurants, and boutique shops!

Food

Breakfast/Lunch:
1. Railtown Cafe (Downtown Vancouver)- Grab breakfast and/or lunch to-go for options 3 and 4.
2. (For option 1 only) Honey's Donuts (Deep Cove)- Do breakfast, lunch, or just dessert.
3. (For option 1 only) Bluhouse Market and Cafe- Best for vegan/vegetarian.
3. (For option 2 only) The Eatery (Kitsilano)- A funky, untraditional sushi restaurant.

Dinner: (in or near Gastown)
1. MeeT in Gastown- Best for vegan/vegetarian. I recommend the Double Double Veggie Burger.
2. Virtuous Pie- Best pizza ever. It’s completely vegan and meat-eaters will be think twice about how that is possible.
3. The Flying Pig Gastown- Not recommended for vegan/vegetarian.
4. Cactus Club Coal Harbour- Something for everyone.

Drinks:
1. The Diamond- Lively spot in Gastown.

Add-On 1 DAY OR OVERNIGHT IN WHISTLER

The Details

Heading to Whistler means driving 2 hours along the Sea to Sky Highway with views of the Howe Sound. It's an amazing sight and something that can be done wheather you have a vehicle or not since shuttles to Whistler are readily available.

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Drive the Sea to Sky Highway or take a shuttle (Whistler Rides). Total drive time is 1.5-2 hours.

Stop 50 minutes into drive to stretch your legs and take in the view of Shannon Falls. After another 30 minutes (1 hour 20 minutes total drive time), go for a short walk to Brandywine Falls.  

Arrive in Whistler Village and walk around.

Option 1: Take Whistler Gondola and Peak chairlift to the top of Whistler Mountain. Hike the High Note Trail (9.5km, 4 hours).

Option 2: Enjoy an outdoor pools and spa day at the Scandinave Spa Whistler.

Option 3: Complete a day hike at a nearby mountain. My favorites include Wedgemount Lakethe LionsGaribaldi Lake, and Tunnel Bluffs (in order from most to least challenging).

Option 4: Rent bikes and bike Whistler's Valley Trail. If you can cross country or mountain bike, take a more advanced trail!

After a full day, drive back to Vancouver. An excellent place to stop to see the sunset is Lions Bay or if you've made it back to Vancouver, see the sunset at English Bay Beach.

Another option is to spend the night on one of the amazing hikes (both require reservations). My top choices are:
1. Panorama Ridge (via Garibaldi Lake)- stay at either Garibaldi Campground or Taylor Meadows Campground.
2. Elfin Lakes- (best in November for some snow on the ground) stay in the shelter or at the equally amazing campsite.

Food and Lodging

Food: (in Whistler)
1. Elements Whistler- For brunch or tapas-style dinner.
2. Crêpe Montagne- French creperie.
3. Amsterdam Pub- Casual, pub food with a great atmosphere.

Drinks:
1. The Mallard Lounge and Terrace at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler- Drinks and desserts in a cozy lounge with board games.
2. Cure Lounge and Patio at Nita Lake Lodge- They provide a shuttle to their beautiful location from Whistler Village. An excellent place to take in the scenery!

Lodging: (in case you want to spend the night in Whistler)
1. (High-end): Four Seasons Resort Whistler
2. (Moderate): Pinnacle Hotel Whistler Village 
3. (Budget): Whistler Lodge Hostel

Add-On 2 FIVE DAYS ALONG THE SCENIC SEA TO SKY HIGHWAY AND BACK TO VANCOUVER

The Details, Food and Lodging

Although the scenic Sea to Sky highway is a drive that can be done in a single day (Add-On 1), all the most beautiful hikes in the Vancouver area exist along this route and to fully experience it, I recommend taking 5 full days (or 4 days if you don't opt for staying overnight on the Day 1 hike)!

NOTE! Doing Add-On 2 includes Add-On 1 so you don't need to do both. Also, if doing this add-on, I have some recommendations for Day 3 in Vancouver. On Day 3, if you choose Option 1, kayak Indian Arm rather than hiking since the hiking will be SO MUCH more spectacular over these 5 days. If you choose Option 3, spend that night in or near Whistler rather than driving all the way back to Vancouver. 

Also, NOTE that ALL of this add-on is included in the Scenic Route to the Rockies.

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Day 1-2 (of add-on) HIKE/BACKPACK PANORAMA RIDGE VIA GARIBALDI LAKE

Either a LONG day hike or an overnight backpacking trip, spending the night at Garibaldi Lake (reservations required and should be made 4 months before arrival date).

Drive 1 hour 45 minute from Vancouver to Rubble Creek Trailhead or Parkbus offers transportation to the trailhead during the Summer season ($35 one-way and $49 return).

Option 1 (requires campground reservations): Hike to Garibaldi Lake on day 1 (9km up) and set up camp for the night. On day 2, leave backpack inside the shelter at the campground and day hike up to Panorama Ridge (6 km up) and then all the way down (15km down) (grabbing backpack on the way).

Option 2: Hike up to Panorama Ridge (30 km roundtrip, 11 hours) in one go, taking a detour to Garibaldi Lake on the way up or down. (Note that you will spend 4 days (rather than 5) on this add-on if you complete this in one day).

Option 3: Day hike up to Garibaldi Lake (19 km roundtrip, 5 hours). 
(Note that you will spend 4 days (rather than 5) on this add-on if you complete this in one day).

Food and Lodging

Food: (in Squamish) Squamish is about 50 minutes from Vancouver and a good place to stop before the hike up to Garibaldi.
1. Green Moustache
2. Zephyr Cafe

(in Whistler)
1. Elements Whistler- For brunch or tapas-style dinner.
2. Crêpe Montagne- French creperie.
3. Amsterdam Pub- Casual, pub food with a great atmosphere.

Drinks:
1. The Mallard Lounge and Terrace at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler- Drinks and desserts in a cozy lounge. Grab some board games and enjoy.
2. Cure Lounge and Patio at Nita Lake Lodge- They provide a shuttle to their beautiful location from Whistler Village. An excellent place to take in the scenery!

Lodging: 
For Option 1, camp at Garibaldi Lake (preferable) or Taylor Meadows campsite on day 1 and stay in one of the lodging options in Whistler on day 2 after completing the backpacking trip.
For Option 2 and 3 (completing as a day hike), stay in Whistler and explore the village at night on day 1, then continue on to Day 3 of the itinerary the following day. 
(Lodging In Whistler):
1. (High-end): Four Seasons Resort Whistler
2. (Moderate): Pinnacle Hotel Whistler Village 
3. (Budget): Whistler Lodge Hostel
4. (Budget): Alice Lake campground


Day 3 (of add-on) HIKE JOFFRE LAKES IN PEMBERTON

Past Whistler in Pemberton is one of the most beautiful hikes in the area (and very moderate) up to 3 stunning glacier lakes. Must do during a weekday to avoid weekend crowds. 

Drive 30 minutes from Whistler to Pemberton
Optional to stop before Pemberton at Nairn Falls.

Drive an additional 30 minutes to the trailhead to begin the hike to Joffre Lakes.

Food and Lodging

Food: (near Pemberton)
1. Solfeggio

Lodging: (in Pemberton)
1. (Moderate) Lillooet River Lodge B&B
2. (Budget) Camping at Upper Joffre Lakes (Sites are first come first serve, must purchase a backcountry permit).


Day 4 (of add-on) DRIVE BACK TO WHISTLER AND DAY IN WHISTLER

NOTE that this is the same as Add-On 1 (One Day in Whistler)

Arrive in Whistler Village and walk around.

Option 1: Take Whistler Gondola and Peak chairlift to the top of Whistler Mountain. Hike the High Note Trail (9.5km, 4 hours).

Option 2: Enjoy an outdoor pools and spa day at the Scandinave Spa Whistler.

Option 3: Rent bikes and bike Whistler's Valley Trail. If you can cross country or mountain bike, take a more advanced trail!

Food and Lodging

Food: (in Whistler)
1. Elements Whistler- For brunch or tapas-style dinner.
2. Crêpe Montagne- French creperie.
3. Amsterdam Pub- Casual, pub food with a great atmosphere.

Drinks:
1. The Mallard Lounge and Terrace at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler- Drinks and desserts in a cozy lounge. Grab some board games and enjoy.
2. Cure Lounge and Patio at Nita Lake Lodge- They provide a shuttle to their beautiful location from Whistler Village. An excellent place to take in the scenery!

Lodging:
1. (High-end): Four Seasons Resort Whistler
2. (Moderate): Pinnacle Hotel Whistler Village 
3. (Budget): Whistler Lodge Hostel
4. (Budget): Alice Lake campground


Day 5 (of add-on) COMPLETE A DAY HIKE ON THE WAY BACK TO VANCOUVER

Complete one last hike on the way back to Vancouver. Choose based on how much energy you have! The below 6 are my favorite and they are listed from most challenging to easiest.  

1. Wedgemount Lake
2. The Lions
3. St Marks Summit
4. Watersprite Lake
5. Tunnel Bluffs 
6. Sea to Sky Gondola and Suspension Bridge (no hiking required, Sky Pilot is an optional hike that begins from the top).

On the way back to Vancouver, there are a couple worthwhile stops- Brandywine Falls and Shannon Falls. Both take less than 10 minutes to walk to on a flat, paved path.

An excellent place to stop to see the sunset is Lions Bay or if you've made it back to Vancouver, see the sunset at English Bay Beach. 

Lodging and food options are listed in Days 1-3 of the itinerary.

Add-On 3 KAYAK THE HOWE SOUND TO GAMBIER ISLAND

The Details

Leave from Porteau Cove along the Sea to Sky highway (near Lions Bay) to kayak in the beautiful Howe Sound and camp on remote islands to truly experience the West Coast lifestyle. 

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Tours and/or rentals can be arranged through Sunshine Kayaking.

I'd recommend spending two nights and staying at two different campsites. The BC Marine Trails website has a great map showing the campsites.

Add-On 4 BACKPACK THE WEST COAST TRAIL ON VANCOUVER ISLAND

The Details

BC’s most popular backpacking trip! Experience Vancouver Island on foot over 7 days to explore the rugged coast, impressive tidal pools, and lush green rainforests. You encounter some serious ladders, reading tide charts, but will be rewarded with campfires on the beach and falling asleep to the sounds of the ocean.

Must book trail in advance (I recommend going North to South, or from Pachena Bay to Gordon River). If you aren't able to get a spot, you can take the chance of a walk-in permit or do the similar and less busy alternative, the Juan De Fuca. The WCT is usually a 6 or 7 day hike, but can be done in 3 or 4 days by taking the midpoint entry/exit point. 

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Day 1:

Drive or transit to the Horseshoe Bay Ferry Terminal, where you will take a ferry to Nanaimo on Vancouver Island.

Then take the Trail Bus (reserve ahead of time) from Nanaimo to Bamfield. You can make the reservation roundtrip to get picked up from the end point (Port Renfrew) or hitchhike to a ferry terminal (either Victoria or Nanaimo ferry terminals) at the end.

If you have a car, it is best to drive to the exit point (Port Renfrew) and take the Trail Bus from Port Renfrew to Bamfield so that when you complete the trail, your car is waiting for you.

Complete the trail orientation and begin your hike to the Michigan campsite (12.1km day, located at the 12.1km mark on map). 

Day 2:

Hike from Michigan to Tsusiat Falls (13.3km day, located at the 25.4km mark on map).

Day 3:

Hike from Tsusiat Falls to Cribs (this will be the longest day- 16.2km, located at the 41.6km mark on map). If you experience bad weather, you can stay at the Tsusiat Huts. 

Day 4:

Hike from Cribs to Walbran Creek campsite (11.6km day, located at the 53.2km mark on map). If you experience bad weather, you can stay at the Nita huts, which would also mean a shorter day. 

Day 5:

Hike from Walbran Creek to Campers (8.9km day, located at the 62.1km mark on map).

Day 6:

Hike from Campers to Thrashers (8km day, located at the 70.1km mark on map).

Day 7:

Hike from Thrasher to the exit at Port Renfrew (4.9km day, located at the 75km mark on map).

You will take a ferry from the end of the trail to the exit point (cost is included when you reserve the WCT). However, note that they have set times (not always every hour/half hour) so make sure to be there on time!

From Port Renfrew, either take the Trail Bus or hitchhike to one of the ferry terminals

Add-On 5 KAYAK OFF OF VANCOUVER ISLAND

The Details

The Broken Islands are a sea kayakers paradise (over 100 scattered islands off the west coast of Vancouver Island) in the Pacific Rim National Park Preserve.

To get there, you need to take a ferry from Vancouver to Nanaimo (on Vancouver Island), then it is a 3 hour drive to Ucluelet. Ucluetet's website lists the companies that provide rentals and tours. 

Another option that I HAVE to mention is a guided kayaking trip of the Johnstone Strait off of Vancouver Island (which is high on my to-do list). They don't guarantee you will see orcas, but it is home to a pod of them! 

One last option is to kayak Desolation Sound. I offer this option since the above two require campsite reservations. If you are feeling spontaneous to complete a multi-day kayak trip, there is no place better!

Journey to the Rockies (DIRECT ROUTE FROM VANCOUVER TO BANFF)

After 3 days in Vancouver and any of Add-Ons 1-5, you are ready to make your way to the Canadian Rockies. The most direct route is from Vancouver to Banff- an 8 hour drive will get you to Golden, BC. After staying a night in Golden, BC (more affordable and easier to get a reservation than Banff), you are only an hour drive from Banff to start your first day in the Rockies. 

NOTE! If you opt for this route to the Rockies, follow the other itinerary provided ('From Calgary') for the remaining part of your trip in the Rockies. The reasoning for this is that this 'From Vancouver' itinerary anticipates that you will drive the scenic route which will start your Rockies journey from Jasper rather than Banff.

The Details

The drive from Vancouver to Golden, BC is 8 hours. Banff National Park is an additional 1 hour drive.

Note that the itinerary 'From Calgary' will begin in the Rockies from the point that you will be arriving to. Open that guide to continue your journey in the Rockies. (This guide continues in the Rockies assuming the scenic route from Vancouver was taken, starting your time in the Rockies from Jasper rather than Banff). 

Food and Lodging

Food: (in Golden)
1. Red Tomato Pies- Vegan pizza options. 

Lodging:
1. (Moderate) BnB's in Golden, BC
2. (Budget) Dreamcatcher Hostel 

Journey to the Rockies (SCENIC ROUTE FROM VANCOUVER ALONG SEA TO SKY HIGHWAY TO JASPER)

This route takes you from Vancouver to Jasper along the Sea to Sky Highway, which includes all of Add-On 1 and Add-On 2. By taking this route, you start the Canadian Rockies trip from Jasper and end in Banff (if going along the direct route, you begin in Banff). You can either fly out of Calgary (closest airport to Banff) or drive back to Vancouver along the direct route. 

The Details

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Day 1 (of add-on) DAY HIKE AND NIGHT IN SQUAMISH

Begin your Journey to the Rockies with the scenic drive along the Sea to Sky highway. It is a 1.5-2 hour drive to Whistler, but stopping in Squamish for your first night means getting an amazing view of the Howe Sound from one of the following impressive hikes!

Drive to the trailhead of any one of these hikes. Choose based on your energy levels and plans for the following days; they are listed from most to least challenging. 

1. The Lions
2. St Marks Summit (with option to continue to Unnecessary Mountain and to the base of West Lion).
3. Watersprite Lake (This hike has no views of the sound, but is one of my favorites- especially in fall with the dusting of snow!) 
4. Tunnel Bluffs
5. Sea to Sky Gondola and Suspension Bridge (no hiking required, Sky Pilot is an optional hike that begins from the top).

Food and Lodging 

Food: (in Squamish)
1. Green Moustache
2. Zephyr Cafe

Lodging:
1. (High-end): Executive Suites Hotel & Resort
2. (Moderate): Howe Sound Inn and Brewing Company
3. (Budget): Squamish Adventure Inn hostel
4. (Budget): Alice Lake campground


Day 2-3 (of add-on) HIKE/BACKPACK PANORAMA RIDGE VIA GARIBALDI LAKE

Either a LONG day hike or an overnight backpacking trip, spending the night at Garibaldi Lake (reservations required and should be made 4 months before arrival date).

Drive from Squamish to the Rubble Creek Trailhead.

Option 1 (requires campground reservations): Hike to Garibaldi Lake on day 1 (9km up) and set up camp for the night. On day 2, leave backpack at the campground’s shelter and day hike up to Panorama Ridge (6 km up) and then all the way down (15km down) (grabbing backpack on the way).

Option 2: Hike up to Panorama Ridge (30 km roundtrip, 11 hours) in one go, taking a detour to Garibaldi Lake on the way up or down. (Note that you will spend 6 days (rather than 7) on this add-on if you complete this in one day).

Option 3: Day hike up to Garibaldi Lake (19 km roundtrip, 5 hours). 
(Note that you will spend 6 days (rather than 7) on this add-on if you complete this in one day).

Food and Lodging

Food: (in Squamish before the hike up to Garibaldi)
1. Green Moustache
2. Zephyr Cafe

Food: (in Whistler)
1. Elements Whistler- For brunch or tapas-style dinner.
2. Crêpe Montagne- French creperie.
3. Amsterdam Pub- Casual, pub food with a great atmosphere.

Drinks:
1. The Mallard Lounge and Terrace at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler- Drinks and desserts in a cozy lounge. Grab some board games and enjoy.
2. Cure Lounge and Patio at Nita Lake Lodge- They provide a shuttle to their beautiful location from Whistler Village. An excellent place to take in the scenery!

Lodging: 
For Option 1, camp at Garibaldi Lake (preferable) or Taylor Meadows campsite on day 2 and stay in one of the lodging options in Whistler on day 3 after completing the backpacking trip.
For Option 2 (completing as a day hike), stay in Whistler and explore the village at night on day 2, then continue on to Day 4 of the itinerary the following day. 
(Lodging In Whistler):
1. (High-end): Four Seasons Resort Whistler
2. (Moderate): Pinnacle Hotel Whistler Village 
3. (Budget): Whistler Lodge Hostel


Day 4 (of add-on) DAY IN WHISTLER

NOTE that this is the same as Add-On 1 (One Day in Whistler)

Arrive in Whistler Village and walk around.

Option 1: Take Whistler Gondola and Peak chairlift to the top of Whistler Mountain. Hike the High Note Trail (9.5km, 4 hours).

Option 2: Enjoy an outdoor pools and spa day at the Scandinave Spa Whistler.

Option 3: Rent bikes and bike Whistler's Valley Trail. If you can cross country or mountain bike, take a more advanced trail!

Food and Lodging for Whistler is the same as previous day. 


Day 5 (of add-on) DAY HIKE OR BACKPACKING TRIP TO WEDGEMOUNT LAKE

By taking the scenic route, you are here to see it all and this place is a must-see. It is a steep climb, but the scenery at the top is worth it. If you can manage to carry food and overnight things up with you, camp! Otherwise, return to another night in Whistler or continue the scenic drive to Pemberton. 

Drive 20 minutes out of Whistler heading North towards Pemberton to the Wedgemount Lake Trailhead. 

Hike Wedgemount Lake.

If continuing drive to Pemberton (30 minutes), option to stop at Nairn Falls. 

Food and Lodging

Food: (near Pemberton)
1. Solfeggio

Lodging: (in Pemberton) (or option to stay another night in Whistler if not camping at Wedgemount Lake)
1. (Moderate) Lillooet River Lodge B&B


Day 6 (of add-on) HIKE JOFFRE LAKES IN PEMBERTON

Past Whistler in Pemberton is one of the most beautiful hikes in the area (and very moderate) up to 3 stunning glacier lakes (camping at the upper lake is first-come, first-serve, backcountry permit required). Must do during a weekday to avoid weekend crowds. 

If coming from Whistler, drive 30 minutes from Whistler to Pemberton
Optional to stop before Pemberton at Nairn Falls.

From Pemberton, drive an additional 30 minutes to the trailhead to begin the hike to Joffre Lakes.

Food and Lodging

Food: (near Pemberton)
1. Solfeggio

Lodging: (in Pemberton)
1. (Moderate) Lillooet River Lodge B&B
2. (Budget) Camping at Upper Joffre Lakes (Sites are first come first serve, must purchase a backcountry permit).

(in Clearwater):
1. (High-end) Alpine Meadows Resort
2. (Moderate) Clearwater Lodge
3. (Budget) Clearwater Valley Resort
4. (Budget) Clearwater Lake Campground


Day 7 (of add-on): COMPLETE DRIVE TO JASPER NATIONAL PARK

From Clearwater, an additional 3 hours 30 minutes will get you into Jasper National Park. 

However, an amazing backpacking trip add-on can also start on this day (Add-on 6) since you will be passing Mt Robson Provincial Park on the way to Jasper. 

After arriving in Jasper, drive the short distance to Patricia and Pyramid Lake. There is an awesome bridge to an island on Pyramid Lake that you must see.

Food and Lodging

Food: (in Jasper)
1. Coco's Cafe- Best for getting breakfast and lunch to-go. Vegan and vegetarian options. 
2. Patricia Street Deli- Good for getting a sandwich to-go.
3. Famoso Neapolitan Pizzeria- Vegan options, but I enjoyed it more as a vegetarian.
4. Earls- A Canadian chain that is always good.

Lodging:
1. (Moderate to High end) Jasper hotels and cabins- I plan to try out a cabin option next time in Jasper.
2. (Moderate) Jasper BnB's
2. (Budget) Jasper Downtown Hostel- Just remodelled and very nicely done.
3. (Budget) HI Jasper Hostel- A bit more in the wilderness and more beds per room, which I found less enjoyable.

Note: This point marks the end of the Vancouver part of Itinerary. All days listed and add-ons are located in the Canadian Rockies.

The next part assumes the scenic route was taken from Vancouver to Jasper. If the direct route was taken from Vancouver to Banff via Golden, continue with the Canadian Rockies Guide 'From Calgary'.


Add-on 6 BACKPACK MT ROBSON

The Details

Take 2-4 days on out-and-back trip to Berg Lake to experience Mt Robson's iconic peak (campsite reservations need to be made early in the year). 

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Day 1:

Drive to the Mt Robson Trailhead (2 km from the Mt Robson Visitor Centre).

Hike 21 km (6-7 hours) to Berg Lake. It is 42 km roundtrip.

Option 1: Exit on day 2. (2 day/1 night trip)
Option 2: Day hike on day 2 from Berg Lake to Snowbird Pass (21.2 km) or from Berg Lake to Hargreaves-Mumm (12 km) (easier but just as grand) before exiting on day 3 (3 days/2 nights).
Option 3: Do both day hikes, one on day 2 and one on day 3 before exiting on day 4 (4 days/3 nights). 

Lodging at Berg Lake backcountry campsites each night. Reservations required.

Add-On 7 DAY OR OVERNIGHT KAYAK TO SPIRIT ISLAND ON MALIGNE LAKE

The Details

The very popular 22.5km kayak/canoe trip can be done in one day, but it is a bit ambitious. Ideally, with this overnight option, you spend two nights and go even further than Spirit Island (but even one night gets you to the most stunning place). Book early to reserve these campsites OR to get the amazing views without reserving sites/camping, take the Maligne Lake Boat Cruise to Spirit Island.

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For one-day adventures, there is a boathouse located at Maligne Lake. Otherwise, renting with Pure Outdoors will allow you to go out for multiple days (a 25% discount is given for any additional days). Plus, they drop off and pick up (for an additional charge) and provide all the necessary gear (life vests, paddles, water pumps, kayak skirts, floatation devices, etc). 

Day 1:

Drive the scenic 1 hour route from Jasper to Maligne Lake. Going early (dawn) to get a headstart on the day means you might see wildlife on the drive there!

Kayak/canoe from the Maligne Lake Boat Ramp to Fisherman's Bay Campground (~13 km). This can take approximately 2 to 4 hours or longer if the wind conditions make it more challenging. From the campground, Spirit Island is a 15 minute paddle away and a great place to see the sunset (and sunrise!).

Day 2:

Kayak/canoe to the second campsite on the lake, Coronet Creek campground, (8 km, ~2-4 hours) (ideally after seeing the sunrise at Spirit Island).

There is an additional trip from Coronet Creek called the Henry Macleod Trail (16 km, 5 hours return) that can be done on arrival or if you opt to spend an additional night at the Coronet Creek campground. 

Day 3:

Kayak from Coronet Creek campground back to the Boat Ramp (21km, 6-8 hours)

Lodging at the two campsites along the lake, Fisherman's Bay and Coronet Creek, need to be reserved EARLY in the year to get a spot. However, cancellations are so common that a lot of people risk it and find that half the campsites are empty!

Add-On 8 BACKPACK THE SKYLINE TRAIL

The Details

1 night/2 days on Jasper's most popular backpacking trip (campsites require reservations in January, the cabins are often available to be reserved later). 

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Option 1: Out and back trip seeing the "Heart of the Skyline" (28.4 km out and back to lodge/campsite plus 14.2 km day hike over the Notch to the NW slope of Amber Mountain).

Day 1:

Drive to the Wabasso Lake trailhead. Hike 14.2 km (3.5 hours) to the Shovel Pass Lodge or Curator campground.

Drop your bag and day hike. If nice weather and clear, hike over the Notch to the NW slope of Amber Mountain. If not, be hopeful to do it the following day and can do a 11.2 km optional hike over Big Shovel Pass to the middle of Snowbowl instead.

Day 2:

Hike over the Notch to the NW slope of Amber Mountain if you haven't already before returning down the same 14.2km to your car.

Option 2: The traditional Skyline Trail (44.1 km one way), starting at Maligne Lake trailhead and ending at Signal Mountain trailhead. This requires booking a shuttle to return you to your car or hitchhiking. One night at Snowball Campground, Curator Campground, or the Shovel Pass Lodge should be booked.

Day 4 EDITH CAVELL GLACIER + START DRIVE ALONG ICEFIELDS PARKWAY

The biggest mistake I made on my first trip to the Rockies was doing the Icefields Parkway in one day. There are SO many hikes and viewpoints that by giving yourself part of Day 5 to finish the parkway, you can pull over at ALL the pullouts to get the full experience!

If you aren't planning to stay at one of the resorts or inns (which requires booking in advance), you can leave some flexibility here and choose one of the many campsites or HI Wilderness Hostels along the way which don't usually fill up.

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Drive from Jasper to the Edith Cavell Glacier parking lot, where you can walk a short distance to the base of a glacial lake.

Option 1: Continue from the base of the glacial lake to the Cavell Meadows Summit (9.5km, 4 hours).

Option 2: Other highly rated hikes in the area include Wilcox Pass (8km, 2-3 hours) to get a view of the Columbia Icefield, Campus Pass (31.9km, 10-12 hours), Verdant Pass (19km, 6-7 hours) (pictured in first photo), and Tangle Ridge via Tangle Pass (17.6km, 6-8 hours).

Map

Rainy Weather Alternative

Food and Lodging

Food: No options after leaving Jasper. Be prepared to eat at the lodge or cook for yourself at the hostel.

Lodging:
1. (High-end) Num Ti Jah Lodge
2. (Moderate) Glacier View Inn or The Crossing Resort
3. (Budget) One of the HI Wilderness Hostels e.g. HI Mosquito Creek, HI Rampart Creek, etc.

Add-on 9 AN EXTRA DAY ON THE ICEFIELDS PARKWAY

The Details

Explore more than most by taking adventures as they come, staying a 2nd night along the parkway before continuing on to Jasper as planned for the next day.

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From Glacier View Inn or the HI Hilda Creek Wilderness Hostel, make your way along the parkway to the HI Mosquito Creek or the Num Ti Jah Lodge. Along the way, you will pass trailheads to hikes that are highly recommended. Since they are on the shorter side, choose a couple!

1. Bow Glacier Falls (9km, 3 hours)
2. Bow Peak (12km, 4-4.5hours)
3. Mistaya Canyon (1km, 1 hour)
3. Parker Ridge (4km, 1-2 hours)

Lodging

1. (High-end) Num Ti Jah Lodge
2. (Budget) HI Mosquito Creek

Day 5 ICEFIELDS PARKWAY

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Photos at Peyto Lake view point. (Great to photograph at sunrise or mid-day to mid-afternoon).

Hike Helen Lake/Cirque Peak (12km, 4 hours (or 16km, 6 hours to Cirque Peak)) and enjoy lunch at Helen Lake.

Stop at Herbert Lake for photos. (It's on the side of the road- don't miss it!) (Great to photograph at sunrise and sunset).

Optional: A couple other trailheads you will pass along the drive are Bow Glacier Falls (9km, 3 hours) and Bow Peak (12km, 4-4.5 hours), Parker Ridge (4km, 1-2 hours) and Mistaya Canyon (1km, 1 hour). 

Optional (photography): 
Sunrise from the Peyto Lake viewpoint, just a 15 minute drive if staying at HI Mosquito Creek or the Num Ti Jah Lodge!
Sunset at Herbert Lake.

Map

Rainy Weather Alternative

Food and Lodging

Food:
1. Trailhead Cafe

Lodging: Stay in Lake Louise
1. (High End) Baker Creek Mountain Resort (between Lake Louise and Banff)- If you're willing to splurge, this is the place. Enjoy your own luxury cabin for the night.
2. (Budget) HI Lake Louise (Hostel)- I really liked this hostel and even enjoyed the restaurant.

Day 6 LAKE LOUISE AND MORAINE LAKE

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Plan to start your day early, especially if you are coming in the Summer. In the Summer, opting to go later will mean taking a shuttle  to Lake Louise from overflow parking lots, but there is no other way to get to Moraine Lake if you don't get parking. Rangers recommend 'before 7:30am' to get a spot

Grab breakfast and lunch to-go from the Trailhead Cafe in the Lake Louise shopping centre.

Drive to Moraine Lake to take photos. (Great to photograph at mid to late morning).
Walk 10 minutes up the rock pile in order to get the famous view of Moraine Lake.
Option 1: Hike the very challenging Mt Temple hike leaving from Moraine Lake (16km, 7-10 hours).

Drive to Lake Louise. (Great to photograph at sunrise).
Rent a canoe and paddle on Lake Louise. 
Option 2: Hike the more moderate hike to Lake Agnes Tea House (6.2km, 1.5-4 hours). If you want to make it more challenging and equally more rewarding, continue from the Lake Agnes trail to the Six Glaciers trail for two teahouses in one day (16.1km, 8 hours). 

Optional (photography): 
Sunrise at Lake Louise before heading to Moraine Lake for mid to late morning light.
Sunset at Herbert Lake (a 15 minute drive from Lake Louise along the Icefields Parkway)

Map

Rainy Weather Alternative

None, plan is still doable. Although, the only hike that should be attempted is to the Lake Agnes Tea House where there will be a warm beverage waiting for you at the end. 

Food and Lodging

Food:
1. Trailhead Cafe- Great option to get breakfast as well as lunch to-go for your hike.

Lodging: Stay in Lake Louise
1. (High End) Baker Creek Mountain Resort (between Lake Louise and Banff)- If you're willing to splurge, this is the place. Enjoy your own luxury cabin for the night.
2. (Budget) HI Lake Louise (Hostel)- I really liked this hostel and even enjoyed the restaurant.

Add-On 10 OVERNIGHT AT LAKE O'HARA

The Details

Spend 1 night/2 days or 2 nights/3 days at one of the most desirable areas in the Rockies (must make reservations to camp 3 months in advance (to the day) OR reserve a bed at the Elizabeth Parker Alpine Club Hut or at the Lake O'Hara Lodge). If you are planning far enough in advance, I'd say that this is NOT an add-on and you must not pass this one up!

Other options are to do Lake O'Hara as a day-hike, where you will need to reserve a bus will take you from the Lake O'Hara parking lot up the 11km gravel road (self-driving is not permitted due to Parks Canada limiting the number of visitors to the area).

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Day 1: 

Drive to the Lake O'Hara parking lot.

Catch the first shuttle bus up the 11km restricted-access road (8:30am) (reservation required for day hikers, reservation on the bus is included for everyone staying overnight).

Hike the Lake O'Hara Alpine Circuit (13.3km, 6-7 hours).

Day 2:

Hike Lake McArthur (7km, 2.5 hours) and Odaray Grandview (8.2km, 3 hours) as a single day hike.

Option 1: Exit on day 2 on the last shuttle (6:30pm)
Option 2: Stay another night and do a challenging hike on day 3 before descending that day.

Day 3 (option 2):
Hike Yukness Mountain (8.4km, 5-6 hours).

Note: If you decide to reserve the shuttle bus only (not an overnight trip), you should do the Alpine Circuit

Lodging

Day 7 EMERALD LAKE

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This is a BUSY spot so it is ideal to go early morning (up until 9am) and anytime after 7pm.

Drive from Lake Louise to Emerald Lake (Yoho National Park).
Paddle on Emerald Lake ($60 per hour). Check their hours.
Walk around the beautiful Emerald Lake Lodge.

Notice signs for 'Natural Bridge' while driving back down along Emerald Lake Road. It is a worthwhile stop for photos.

Optional: Drive and walk a short distance along a paved road to Takakkaw Falls or for something more intense, do the Iceline Trail (12.8km, 4-7 hours).

Map

Rainy Weather Alternative

Food and Lodging

Options to stay in either Field, BC or Banff.
(in Field, BC)
Food:
1. The Siding Cafe- One of my favorite lunch spots with vegan and vegetarian options!
2. Truffle Pigs Bistro & Lodge- Lunch or dinner with vegan and vegetarian options.
3. Emerald Lake Lodge- They have three restaurants. Limited vegan and vegetarian options.

Lodging: 
1. (High End) Emerald Lake Lodge (Field, BC)- If you are willing to splurge, this is the one. It is secluded, private, and adorable.
2. (Moderate) BnB's in Field, BC

(in Banff, AB)
Food:
1. Nourish Bistro Banff- Vegan restaurant in Banff. It was very challenging to find any vegan options so we ate here ALOT even with how pricy it is.

Lodging: 
1. (Moderate) BnB's in Banff- A very popular way to stay in Banff. It can sometimes feel like every other house is a BnB! 
2. (Budget) HI Banff (Hostel)- I highly recommend this hostel, although it is a little outside of the central Banff area.

Day 8 SUNSHINE MEADOWS

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From Banff, drive to the Sunshine Village Ski Resort (about 20 minutes). Take the gondola up to Sunshine Meadows.
Walk to the Rock Isle Lake view point and then down to Rock Isle Lake for photos and a good lunch spot. 
Option 1: Hike Healy Pass (18.2km, 5-6.5 hours).
Option 2: Hike the Grizzly/Laryx Lake Loop (8km, 3.5 hours) (the less strenuous and most popular option).

Enjoy the rest of the day walking the streets of Banff to find your dinner spot, buy souvenirs, etc.

Map

Rainy Weather Alternative

Sunshine Meadows should definitely be enjoyed in good weather. I arrived to the viewpoint to serious cloud cover and decided to wait till it cleared and it made a huge difference!
An alternative day could include:
1. Marble Canyon, which I think is the prettiest canyon in all of the Rockies.
2. Lake Minnewanka where you can take a boat cruise or just explore around the lake.
3. Banff Upper Hot Springs, a warm way to enjoy unpleasant weather; although I do prefer natural hot springs more.
4. Johnston Canyon, as one of the most popular trails in the Rockies, I have put it as a rainy day activity because it is BUSY. The only time you can enjoy it is early mornings, at night, or when it looks like it won't be a clear, nice day. So definitely see it, but it doesn't need to be in high season or during nice weather!

Food and Lodging

Food:
1. Nourish Bistro Banff- Vegan restaurant in Banff. It was very challenging to find any vegan options so we ate here ALOT even with how pricy it is.

Lodging: Stay in Banff
1. (Moderate) BnB's in Banff- A very popular way to stay in Banff. It can sometimes feel like every other house is a BnB! 
2. (Budget) HI Banff (Hostel)- I highly recommend this hostel, although it is a little outside of the central Banff area.

Add-On 11 BACKPACK TO MT ASSINIBOINE

The Details

Extend your time to take in sunshine meadows' splendour over 2 nights/3 days in the BC Backcountry with an out and back trip to see the "Canadian Matterhorn". 

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This backpacking trip includes everything in Day 8 of this itinerary (the Sunshine Village gondola and seeing Sunshine Meadows) due to Sunshine Meadows being the starting point of the backpacking trip, so I recommend your actual Day 8 be the first day of this trip. 

Day 1:
Drive to the Sunshine Village Ski Resort (about 20 minutes). Take the gondola up to Sunshine Meadows, making sure to know the time of the last gondola down for when you return in a few days time.
Walk to the Rock Isle Lake view point and then down to Rock Isle Lake for photos and a good lunch spot. 

Hike to Og Lake (22.2km, 6-8 hours) to camp.

Day 2:

Continue from Og Lake another 6km to your final destination, Lake Magog to camp.

Although I found Og Lake campsite much better (Lake Magog campsite is crowded and has lots of mosquitos in the summer), it is the best access point for the main event- Nub Peak, the quintessential view of Mt Assiniboine!

Once at Lake Magog, continue up to Nub Peak (additional 10.6km roundtrip, 3-3.5 hours) where you will also pass the beautiful Sunburst and Cerulean lakes. (Nub Peak is the place to watch both sunset and sunrise).

Day 3:

Start early as you head back to Sunshine Village the way you came (28.2km total) and make the last gondola. If this is too much distance to cover, you can spend an additional night at the Porcupine campsite between Og Lake and Sunshine Village. 

Note: this hike can be done one way (rather than out and back), if you exit via the Mt Shark Trailhead, which is in the Canmore area. From Lake Magog to Mt. Shark Trailhead is still about 27km, so you don't cut down a noticeable amount of mileage on your last day out. Also, the trail is not even comparable scenery-wise, especially the last 10k being on a gravel road, and you will have to arrange shuttle back to your car or hitchhike to Banff and then take Sunshine Village's shuttle back to your car. (I actually did it this way and would recommend out and back for better views and the benefit of arriving to your car). 

Optional (photography):
Both, sunset on day 2 and sunrise on day 3, at the Niblet/Nub Peak.

Lodging

Although this itinerary assumes camping, two cabin-style accommodations are available. Adjustments to the itinerary would be to hike the full 28.2km to Lake Magog on the first day to reach them. The bonus is how little you would need to carry. Two nights are still preferred.

1. Og Lake and Lake Magog Campsites (no reservation required, only a backcountry permit must be purchased ($10 per person per day) which can be done online)
2. Assiniboine Lodge or Naiset Huts 

Add-On 12 DAY IN CANMORE WITH OPTION TO BIKE FROM BANFF VIA THE BANFF LEGACY TRAIL

The Details

Get to know the lifestyle of people living in the Rockies by visiting Canmore (where most Canadian Rocky locals live). The famous 22km Banff Legacy Trail is scenic and a safe, easy cycling experience to get to Canmore or driving is an option to get to hiking trailheads.

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If biking, rent a bike for the day and head out on your 2-3 hour bike ride (one way). I recommend leaving as early as possible to beat the heat (less bike traffic and car noise is also preferable).

The Valley View Day Use area is the half-way point and an excellent snack stop.

Once in Canmore, have lunch at Communitea Cafe.

Visit the Tourism Canmore Office to get additional suggestions for activities (routes for biking and/or hiking) nearby if you would like to explore further. Some of the notable hikes are East End of Rundle, Ha Ling Peak, Rawson Lake and Sarrail Ridge, and Mount Engadine. These require a car to get to the trailhead, so if you biked, taking a cab (15 min drive) would save a challenging 1+ hour bike ride.

Opt to either bike back or take public transportation (with your bike) back to Banff (about 30 minutes by bus). 

(Lodging should be in Banff wherever you stayed the previous night.)