Easy sell: Dinosaurs and mountains
DAY 1/2: Edmonton
DAY 3/4: Grande Prairie
DAY 5/6: Jasper and Icefields Parkway
DAY 7/8: Lake Louise and Banff
DAY 9/10: Calgary and Drumheller and the Badlands
Clients looking for the ultimate Canadian experience will love this drive from Edmonton to Calgary, mixing modern cities with fine food and the best in outdoor living.
Day one & two:Visitors embarking on a classic road trip through the Rocky Mountains are already thinking big. And there’s no better place to begin than the bright lights of Edmonton. They can get the retail therapy done first at the famous West Edmonton Mall with more than 800 stores or in the independent boutiques in historic Old Strathcona. Head out to Elk Island National Park which is home to bison, deer and moose, while a Segway tour of the North Saskatchewan River is a modern take on a trail ride.
Day three & four: Canada’s wide open spaces are revealed in the six-hour drive to Grande Prairie. On the way visitors marvel at Rochfort Bridge – one of the continent’s longest train trestle bridges, while a stop at Fort Assiniboine Friendship Museum sheds light on the area’s frontier past. In town there are craft beers to taste on a tour of GP Brewing Company. Nighthawk Adventure Park and the Phillip J Currie Dinosaur Museum are great for all ages. They can try summertime ski jumping at the former, and get hands-on with fossils at the latter. History buffs will love Sexsmith, a town packed with buildings from the 1920s and 1930s.
Day five & six: The pretty mountain town of Jasper is a leisurely four-five hour drive away, welcoming guests with rustic cabins and luxury lodges. Head for the Jasper SkyTram, Canada’s longest and highest cable car, and your clients will get breathtaking views and can then look even higher at the Jasper Planetarium and Telescope Stargazing Experience. Travel down the Icefields Parkway leaving plenty of time to ride the explorer bus to the Athabasca Glacier and experience the incredible glass-floored Glacier Skywalk.
Day seven & eight: On through Jasper National Park they’ll find Lake Louise, where the Lake Louise Gondola rises to 2,088 metres for brilliant views and grizzly bear spotting. They can stroll or hike around Lake Louise, or rent a canoe and paddle to the Victoria Glacier. Nestled in the heart of Banff National Park, Banff is a rugged treat. Top attractions are the Banff Gondola ride to the top of Sulphur Mountain; a relaxing soak in the restorative waters of Banff Hot Springs; plus horseriding, barbecue cook-outs and some serious shopping for local crafts.
Day nine & ten: Home of the famous Calgary Stampede each July, this modern city has plenty on offer year-round. For authentic tastes, suggest the Calgary Food Tour or Farmers Market where rows of colourful fresh produce make for tasty treats and great photos. The Calgary Craft Beer tour explores brewing in the city, while a drive along the scenic Cowboy Trail to the Eau Clare distillery ends offers locally produced gin and vodka. Outside of town in the heart of the Canadian Badlands lies Drumheller and the UNESCO-protected Dinosaur Provincial Park for the best of fossil-hunting. The Royal Tyrrell Museum here has a superb dinosaur display and the Hoodoo Trail (Highway 10) is dotted with famous prehistoric sandstone pillars.