Lake Louise is, without a doubt, one of the most popular destination inside Banff National Park. Tens of thousands of people come here each year to catch a glimpse of the insanely beautiful turquoise blue water. Rain or shine, summer or winter, you can expect to face a crowd at this tourist hot spot; but there are some ways to maximize your visit and give yourself the best possible experience. So keep reading for a locals tips and tricks on how to make the most of your time at Lake Louse, Canada!
For information on currency, vaccinations, best time to travel, budget tips, and more visit our page on Traveling Canada.
How To Get There
Lake Louise is located 30 minutes West of Banff and 3 hours West of Calgary. Although Calgary is the closest international airport, many people fly into Vancouver, hop into a rental car, and embark on a scenic road trip across B.C. Although this is a popular option, keep in mind that Lake Louise is about 12 hours from Vancouver and requires a lot more time on the road.
Best Time To Travel
Depending on what type of activities you`re interested in, you can plan to visit Lake Louise at any time of year. From amazing hiking and mountain biking in the summer months to skiing and snowshoeing in the winter, the options are endless! The fall is one of our favorite times to visit because of the beautiful colors and smaller crowds. Prices drop significantly late in the fall and don’t rise again until June, so if you’re looking to save a boat load of money – travel during that window.
Average Daily Budget
Your average daily budget in Lake Louise will completely depend on where you stay and what you choose to do. If you plan to camp or stay in a hostel, do mostly free activities and bring your own gear you can visit for relatively cheap. If you decide to stay at a high end resort and spend your days on the ski hill or taking helicopter rides through the Rockies, you`re budget will raise substantially.
Daily budget when staying in a hostel, bringing your own gear and doing mostly free or cheap activities: $130 CAD ($97 USD) per person per day.
- Accommodation: $35 CAD ($27 USD) per night for a single bed in a hostel or a campground
- Transportation: $15 CAD ($11 USD) per person per day
- Meals: $55 ($42 USD) CAD per person per day
- Attractions & Rentals: $25 CAD ($17 USD) per person per day
Daily budget when staying in a high end resort, renting a car, skiing, and taking expensive tours: $320+ CAD ($248 USD) per person per day.
Rent a Car: Renting a car in Calgary and driving to Lake Louise is a great option. It will typically cost you $40-50 CAD ($31-38 USD) per day. However, if you are under 25 the price is substantially higher. Inquire about coverage and unlimited kilometers beforehand to avoid getting surprised with fees upon arrival.
Bus: Many of the shuttle buses that travel between the Calgary International Airport and Banff will actually continue on into Lake Louise, making it relatively easy to get around by bus. These shuttles also travel back and forth to Sunshine Village and Banff daily. Prices and pick up times vary so be sure to check the website.
Campervan: If your into the campervan lifestyle, renting a campervan from Cozy Campers in Calgary would be an epic adventure and allow a ton of flexibility! Rates vary during the winter months so be sure to check their website for up-to-date prices and availability.
Agoda is perfect for finding everything from hostels and B&B`s to 5 star hotels. You can search by map or by price and they typically have free cancellation.
Budget: $25-45 CAD ($20-35 USD) per night. Dorm room (single bed), Airbnb rooms( double occupancy), or a campsite (double occupancy).
Mid range: $75-175 CAD ($58-136 USD) per night for 2 people. An older hotel, Bed & Breakfast, or Airbnb.
- Get a hotel or B&B with breakfast included
- Book your ski lift ticket a few days in advance online to save 18-20%
- Stay somewhere with access to a kitchen and cook your own meals
- Bring your own gear if you plan to do biking, skiing, floating down the river, etc.
- Take advantage of all the FREE trails and things to do in Lake Louise!
- A tip of 18% is customary for restaurants in Canada