Recharge your batteries at Banff Upper Hot Springs (Photo credit: Parks Canada)
9. When’s the last time you hit the hot springs? Soothe sore muscles at Banff Upper Hot Springs. After your soak, grab a bite to eat in the cafe. It’s licensed… The springs are all natural thermal water, so expect to feel oh-so relaxed afterwards. It’s like a mini vacation.
10. There are many ways to seek natural serenity in the mountains, but surely yoga in the great outdoors is the most relaxing. Taking place May 24-26, Banff Yoga Festival is a three day event with sessions that go beyond downward dog. Try raw cooking, meditation and even organic wine tasting! There’s no better way to relax in a beautiful mountain setting.
11. Then there’s the Mindfulness, Meditation and Yoga Spring Retreat takes places at the swish Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. If you read Trip Advisor, you’ll know this is one of the Rockies more premier hotels. (Their sister hotel is the Fairmont Banff Springs.) There are several spring weekends to choose from. You’ll learn how to live in the moment, while enjoying luxury meals and sleeping in a swish hotel.
12. If you’re on vacation in Banff with kids, check out the many family friendly activities in Banff National Park.
Things to do in Canmore
The Uncorked Long Table Dinner sells out every year. The progressive dinner/ bike tour tops my list though.
13. The premier event for anyone who loves their food and wine, Canmore Uncorked is one of those laid-back events that thankfully isn’t foodie pretentious. There’s a ton of experiences and set prices menus that range from $5-$40. It runs April 25 to May 5.
14. Ever been spelunking? An entire world lies beneath the surface, and Canmore Cave Tours operates all year long. Test your limits as you sample caving and rappelling on a range of tours and courses. (If I had to pick, this is one of my favourite things to do in Canmore!)
15. Families can lose an entire day inside Elevation Place. Head here for an indoor climbing gym (with smaller pitches for little climbers), plus a pool with a waterslide, lazy river and tons of large floaty toys.
16. Golf is usually cheaper at the start of the season. Besides boasting a world class course, Silvertip Resort has a fabulous brunch at their restaurant, Rustica.
17. If you’ve spent much time in Canmore, you’ve likely thrown back a few beers at The Grizzly Paw. Their new production facility offers brewery tours Friday to Sunday, and it includes samples! This is one of the best date things to do in Canmore! And if you’re into spirits, check out the tours and tastings at Wild Life Distillery.
18. It seems odd to be hiking in March or April, but many years it’s totally doable. Stick to lower elevations for trails clear of snow.
19. It’s hard to find a green spa, but Verde Day Spa is one of them. They’ve got several locations in Canmore and even one at Sunshine Village to melt away city stressors. I head here for facials, massage and even waxing. (I don’t know what it is about their wax, but I swear it hurts less.) With tricked out showers, be sure to book an extra 15-minutes after your treatment so you can freshen up while getting pummelled at the same time. Check out what else you can do at Sunshine Village that doesn’t involve skiing.
Things do in Jasper
20. I bet you didn’t know Jasper had a pride festival. They’ve got over 20 fun events from skiing to line dancing, a Burlesque show and family activities – all during the April 25-28 festival.
This guy’s got a winner! (Photo credit: Jasper Pride Festival)
21. Your ears may pop as you ascend up Whistlers Mountain on the Jasper SkyTram, but the 360° views are second to none. This is the highest and longest aerial tramway in Canada.
22. For an adrenaline jolt like no other, link up with Rocky Mountain Canyoning. During canyon repel excursions, you’ll get to suss out areas that seem totally inaccessible. Descending down deep gorges using ropes to control your movements is a rush you won’t soon forget.
23. Have you started running outdoors? Jasper’s half-marathon takes place April 13.
24. Spring skiing at Marmot Basin is super fun, especially if you’re breaking out the coconut bras during their annual Aloha Cup on April 20.
Be the first in the Rockies to dip your paddles this spring. (Photo credit: Wild Current Outfitters)
25. It’s almost time to hit the water! In late April, you can paddle across Jasper’s prettiest lakes or brave the river rapids on guided trips with Wild Current Outfitters.
Spring Adventures in the Canadian Rockies
What are your favourite shoulder season activities to do in the mountains?