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“Please ... don't be in a hurry!”
Review of Bow Valley Parkway

Bow Valley Parkway
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$128.49*
and up
Mountain Lakes and Waterfalls Day Trip from Banff
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$121.49*
and up
Small-Group Glacier Lakes and Lake Louise Hiking With Lunch
Reviewed August 18, 2013

We drove this road in both directions. It is a beautiful drive through the woods and definitely a great place to spot wildlife. However, if you are in a hurry stay off this road! There is a perfectly good highway if you have no interest in enjoying the drive. Not only do speeders ruin the drive for others, but it could be quite dangerous. There are several blind curves and you never know when several cars might be stopped to watch a large elk on the side of the road. Drive this road to enjoy the "drive" ... and slow down!

1  Thank Debby S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (1,835)
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1,230 - 1,234 of 1,835 reviews

Reviewed August 13, 2013

It's a nice alternative to highway 1. If you are going from Banff north and back you can take it in one direction and get a different scenery. We drove slowly, twice, at dusk, and didn't see any animals unfortunately, but it is still a pretty drive. Just don't get your hopes up too much.

Thank judith_kelley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2013

This route has far more to see & experience than the freeway.
Try to take this route early in the morning to go to Lake Louise from Banff, if you want to see wildlife! We were able to see a lot of different species on our back as well, around sunset.
Just drive slowly and keep an eye for the cars parked and lined up, if you can't find them on your own!!
If you aren't lucky and don't see any, still it is worh it.

1  Thank Chia2005
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 5, 2013

In 2-1/2 years of living in Calgary, we scampered west and hour at every opportunity and would cruise the Bow Valley parkway over and over. A favorite spot is the Mule Shoe picnic area where we once saw a grizzly stroll past the picnic table en route downhill through the woods to swim across a small pond. Have seen several other black bears in the area across the parkway as well as a wolf on the pond's railroad tracks and always ground squirrels posing for a Kodak moment.
Be sure to take time to read all the information posted regarding the area wildlife and prescribed burns, historical points. Amazing to find so much natural beauty running parallel to the TransCanada. You can take it all the way to Lake Louise and enjoy a hike through Johnston Canyon and its waterfalls, elk, deer and Castle Mtn and the fun convenience store with the neatest souvenirs, clean washrooms, treats to munch on and a nice wine selection - cute cabins and even gasoline !

1  Thank lesmiz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 4, 2013 via mobile

Definitely a must do when visiting Banff- lots of animal sightings and beautiful mountain views. Also, stop at Johnston Canyon and do the hike if you have time!

1  Thank basilkat23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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