Things to do

15 Amazing Things to do in Canmore

Things to do in Canmore

Looking for the top things to do in Canmore? Let us get started.

Canmore is situated in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, is a dream destination for adventure seekers and is only 45 minutes by car, west of Calgary.

Canmore is surrounded by Alberta Provincial Parks, including Kananaskis Country, and is bordered to the west by Banff National Park. It has been a popular holiday spot for thirty years because of its scenery, outdoor activities, and wildlife.

A day trip to Lake Louise and the wonders of Banff National Park is one of the most well-liked activities for visitors staying in Canmore.

Shop at the Canmore Mountain Market where you will find organic products.

You can also visit the Canmore Museum which is among the best things that people love to enjoy in Canmore.

The summer weekends are busy in Downtown Canmore, although it is less crowded and easier to navigate than Downtown Banff.

It is a beautiful village in the Canadian Rockies that is worth a trip. It’s challenging to get bored because there are so many things to do in Canmore and the surrounding area.

15 Amazing Things To Do In Canmore-

1. Cross Country Skiing

Cross country skiing is one of the most amazing things to do in Canmore, Alberta.

The Nordic Center in Canmore, where some of Canada’s top cross-country ski resorts are found, is renowned worldwide. In Canmore, close to Three Sisters Parkway, is where you’ll find the Nordic Centre.

Cross-country ski trails and the biathlon were among the events held in the Nordic Centre during the 1988 Winter Olympics.

The winter is a great time to visit if you want to see snow, participate in winter sports, or enjoy fewer crowds and cheaper accommodations.

Over 65km of groomed trails cross-country ski trails are available in the Canmore Winter Carnival, in addition to the trails for biking and hiking in the summer.

That’s right, you can cross-country skiing here, and if you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of some seasoned athletes getting ready for the next Olympic competition.

If you have your equipment, cross-country skiing at the Canmore Nordic Centre is an enjoyable pastime and is also reasonably priced.  But if you need to equipment renting, you can do so at the Nordic Centre as well.

2. Three Sister Mountain

Three Sister Mountain
by Martin Capek/Shutterstock

The Three Sisters Mountain Range, which consists of the mountains Faith, Hope, and Charity, is one of Canmore’s most imposing and well-known landmarks (called the Big Sister, Middle Sister, Little Sister).

The Three Sisters are a collection of three peaks close to Canmore, and they are a fantastic location to visit if you appreciate taking in the sights of nature.

They are challenging to overlook since they are so high up, and seeing these tenacious giants is one of the top things to do in Canmore, Alberta, that you shouldn’t miss.

The Three Sisters are easily seen from downtown Canmore. However, there are a few particular locations that provide the best views of these mountains.

The neighbouring Bow River provides the most excellent vistas. A must-do activity in Canmore is a trip to Three Sisters.

There are several hiking and trekking paths in the area, and there are excellent photo opportunities.

The Middle Sister and Big Sister can both be climbed via scrambling, but the Little Sister is reserved for experienced rock climbers only.

3. Bow Valley Parkway

Bow Valley Parkway is located around 35 minutes away from Canmore. There are many scenic spots along the journey, such as Castle Mountain and Morant’s Curve.

It is one of Canmore, Alberta’s top tourist destinations, thanks to these breathtaking features.

Lake Louise, located at the end of this road’s journey, is an attraction that shouldn’t be missed.

It would be great if you visit Johnston Canyon on the Bow Valley Parkway during the winter months because it is situated there.

The beginning of the Bow Valley Parkway is a must-see location while visiting Canmore, even if it isn’t exactly in canmore. It’s just a 20-minute drive away.

It is widely regarded as one of the most beautiful stretches of roadway not just on the Trans Canadian Highway but also in the entire world.

Also, please not that a National Park Pass is required.

4. Grassi Lake

One of the top attractions of Canmore is Grassi Lake. For families and novice hikers, it is the ideal location.

A pair of stunning blue-green lakes can be reached along the very well-liked Grassi Lakes Trail, an easy walking path. It’s a beautiful idea to go hiking with kids because the trail is kid-friendly.

It transforms into a beautiful wonderland throughout the colder months, making it a beautiful winter hike with the frozen lakes.

There are two separate trails you can use to go to Grassi Lakes in the summer, but in the winter, the more treacherous trail is closed because of safety concerns.

The Smith Dorrien Trail leads to the trailhead for Grassi Lakes, which is beside Ha Ling Peak. You won’t be able to hike to Grassi Lakes because this road occasionally closes in the winter when it’s terrible outside.

Additionally, the Grassi Lakes hiking trail is occasionally closed, however, this does not last during the entire winter season. Before beginning the hike, you should look for signs indicating that certain areas are closed or that certain activities are prohibited.

One of the top activities for families in Canmore is the Grassi Lakes Climb, a short hike close to Calgary.

Grassi Lakes should be your first walk if you just have time for one while in Canmore. It’s unquestionably among the top things to do in Canmore. 

5. Canmore Nordic Center

In the Canmore Nordic Centre, you can access over a hundred kilometres of trails. There are a few dirt roads, but the single tracks in the forest have a lovely flow.

Once you leave the forest and are on a gravel road, you occasionally get a glimpse of the mountains, which is an excellent opportunity to take in the scenery.

Bicycles are available for rent on-site, and a trail map can be obtained from the information center; alternatively, you can download it online. It costs nothing to utilize the trails.

5.1. What Kind of Activities Can We Do Here?

Numerous hiking, biking, and cross-country skiing trails are available at the Canmore Nordic Centre.

Numerous sports may also be enjoyed here, including paddleboarding, swimming, picnicking, nature hikes, roller skiing, and disc golf.

This location, created to hold cross-country skiing competitions at the 1988 Olympic Games, doubles as a training facility and a leisure space today.

Mountain biking is another very well-liked activity in Canmore. Before taking on something more challenging, it’s a good idea to rehabilitate your mountain biking legs on the trails at the Canmore Nordic Centre.

Another fantastic activity in Canmore in the Fall is mountain biking, and two of the more well-known tracks nearby are the Highline Trail and the Goat Creek Trail.

The Nordic Centre is the ideal location to use the many paths in Canmore and have your own outdoor experience, no matter what you have planned.

6. Ha Ling Peak Trail

One of the top things to do in Canmore is to visit Ha Ling Peak. You can also hike up Ha Ling Peak during favourable winter weather conditions!

Another well-liked Canmore site, Ha Ling Peak, has a parking lot along the Smith Dorrien Trail. The Smith Dorrien Trailleads to the Ha Ling Peak trailhead, about 15 minutes from Canmore.

The Dorrien Trail allows you to gain a significant amount of height, which makes climbing the mountain simpler than you might anticipate.

It receives a lot of usages and is, therefore, clearly marked and simple to follow.

Once it starts to snow, the climb becomes considerably more challenging or impossible. Also, during the winter, the road leading to the trailhead might be closed.

You must pack wind-resistant jacket, sturdy hiking shoes, and your favourite snacks!

7. Bow River

Canmore is ideally situated for river-based activities due to its proximity to the Bow River, which flows directly through the town.

Canoeing, kayaking, and stand-up paddleboarding are three of the more common water sports that people choose to do on the Bow River. A boat launch is near downtown, where you can rent gear.

Only skilled paddlers should attempt this because the Bow River water is icy and rapidly moving. Try the Canmore Reservoir or sign up for a local tour company’s raft excursion for a more leisurely outing on calm water.

The most beloved location in Canmore is Riverside Park. A new outhouse, picnic tables, and easy access to the river with a tiny sandy beach are all features of this lovely, peaceful park directly by the Bow River.

There are numerous trails all over Canmore. The gravel route alongside the Bow River is a well-liked destination for bicyclists, runners, hikers, and tourists.

Starting from the Bow River Bridge (on Bridge Road), you can travel south along the river route toward the Three Sisters Mountains.

The Bow River Trail combines paved and gravel surfaces with old mining sites and endless mountain views.

The Bow River Campground is a lovely riverside campground located 6 miles from Canmore.

8. Explore Kananaskis Country

From east of Calgary to the Canadian Rockies’ front ranges, there is a region known as Kananaskis.

Kananaskis Country is well worth the drive, so if you’re in the mood for an adventure, don’t hesitate to check it out. There are more than ten parks in this area of Canmore, Alberta.

Located just south of Canmore, the park system known as Kananaskis Country is reachable through the main Highway 40 or the gravel Highway 742. The latter takes some additional driving in the direction of Calgary.

Exploring this lovely area is worthwhile. It offers numerous provincial leisure zones, ecological reserves, wilderness, and parks.

Outdoor activities and protected wildlife habitats are offered by nine provincial parks and more than fifty recreational, wilderness, and natural areas.

9. Banff National Park

Banff National Park
by treisdorfphoto/Shutterstock

Numerous travellers come to Banff yearly; it is a very well-liked town in the Rockies.

There is a tonne of things to do in Canmore at Banff National Park in the winter, and it’s no wonder why because it’s beautiful.

Famous for its vivid lakes, breathtaking mountains, and simple access to a variety of outdoor pursuits, it is home to these features.

No matter what time of year you visit, Banff is a natural beauty that will leave you speechless, with more things to do than we could list.

The town is renowned for its fine dining, championship golf courses, Stewart Creek Golf, fishing, hiking, and even a hot spring that will calm your soul while you relieve your tired bones.

During a visit to Banff National Park, one of the most popular things to do in Canmore is to watch the dawn at Moraine Lake.

After a long and eventful day, it feels good to dive into the warm, refreshing water.

Howveer, you will require a National Park Pass.

10. Dog Sledding

In Canmore, go on a dog sledding adventure with Snowy Owl Sled Dog Tours. It is one of the most incredible things to do in Canmore.

Various dog sledding tours and experiences are available in Spray Valley Provincial Park, just outside of Canmore.

The dogs are extremely amiable and excited. The sensation is difficult to describe in words, but it is fantastic.

The most crucial criteria in choosing a firm were that they were moral and that the dogs received good care.

When compared to other tour companies, Howling Dogs Tours stands out.

10.1. When is the Ideal Time for Dog Sledding?

Dog sledding is one of those activities only possible in Canada during the winter, usually from December to April.

The start and conclusion of the season might occur at various periods, depending on the amount of snowfall experienced annually.

11. Ice Skating

Wild ice skating is the most popular thing to do in Canmore in the winter.

Skating is enjoyable in and of itself, but it is even more enjoyable on one of Canmore’s frozen lakes!

A well-liked natural ice-skating location is Vermilion Lakes in Banff. It is also one of the top ski resorts in Canmore.

This frozen lake is ideal for skating because it frequently has all the snow blown away by the wind.

Skating in Lake Louise is another option you always have, so don’t feel like you’re out of luck just because you can’t make it there.

Ice skating is the finest because it is free if you have skates. If not, you may rent them from Gear Up or even some of the ice rinks in the city.

11.1. When Is the Best Time to Go Ice Skating?

The ideal time of year to go ice skating is often between the middle of December to the beginning of March. Ice skating is a great activity during the winter in Canmore.

There are a few rinks set up by the town of Canmore scattered around the area where people can go ice skating.

12. Policeman’s Creek Trail

A simple strolling path close to Canmore’s Main Street is called Policeman’s Creek. A wooden boardwalk can be seen that winds its way through the creek while providing picturesque vistas of the surrounding mountains.

It is one of the most excellent walking trails in Canmore. This 3.9-kilometre track spends most of its time going alongside the creek.

Along with one leading to Spring Creek and the other to the Bow River, several trails swerve off the main path.

The spring, where the stream bubbles up from deep within the soil, is one fantastic component. One of the most popular things to do in Canmore is this Policeman’s Creek Trail.

On a clear day, the Three Sisters and Ha Long Peak dominate the skyline, offering views that are pretty stunning all along the journey. Policeman’s Creek is an excellent place for families to go.

The walk is wide and level, making it perfect for those toting strollers. It can be reached from the center of Canmore and is a fantastic excursion for people looking to stimulate their senses.

13. Grotto Canyon Trail

Visiting Grotto Canyon Trail is another best thing to do in Canmore. It is a well-liked Canmore hike.

This track has a total distance of 8 kilometres, including both directions, and climbs 390 meters in elevation.

You can see the Grotto Canyon Waterfall, and if you climb, the difficulty of getting there is a cave while on the trip. There is a small hiking track that leads to lower and higher falls that can be used to explore the canyon.

Just east of Canmore’s city, Grotto Mountain’s top is reached by a challenging, all-day circle trek. There are several of Canada’s deepest caves on Grotto Mountain, another reason for its fame.

Guided cave tours are available all year round through Canmore Cave Tours.

People prefer hiking here in the winter. However, when the canyon is frozen over in the winter, the experience is truly one of a kind as you travel through it.

It transforms into a winter wonderland in the winter, complete with frozen waterfalls and ice that, in some spots, completely covers the canyon floor.

13.1. When Is the Best Time to Visit?

The winter months are the ideal time to visit the canyon. During this season, the waterfall freezes, resulting in a magnificent ice sculpture. Bring hot cocoa; it’s a beautiful experience that you shouldn’t miss!

The walk starts with a rise to a vantage point above the canyon and valley, after which you descend into the canyon.

You go by gliding along the frozen creek as you move deeper into the canyon!

Make sure to bring your ice cleats so you can walk more comfortably when the ground is frozen.

The route is lovely year-round and is accessible at any time. Dogs are permitted but must be leashed.

The Grotto Canyon Trail is a beautiful, quick hike with breathtaking scenery.

14. Ride the Legacy Trail

Legacy Trail
by Randy Herr/Shutterstock

Riding from Canmore to Banff via the Rocky Mountain Legacy Trail is consistently ranked as one of the most well-liked things to do in Canmore.

The Town of Canmore and the Town of Banff are connected by this multipurpose recreational paved trail.

It is 26.8 kilometres in length one way. The trail extends to the Bow Valley Parkway from the tourist center at the western edge of Canmore.

Consider travelling further when the trail ends at the Bow Valley Parkway if you want to make an even longer journey.

You can reach Lake Louise by pedalling the entire length of this road. This will increase your travel distance by 50 kilometres in one direction.

A fantastic alternative to achieve that is to hike the Banff Legacy Trail.

Taking the Rundle Riverside Trail or the Goat Creek Trail from Canmore to Banff are additional options available to mountain cyclists only.

After that, you can complete the loop by riding back to Canmore along the Mountain Legacy Trail, a somewhat flat route with some downhill sections.

You must begin in Canmore if you choose to ride the Goat Creek Trail; otherwise, the entire course will be uphill. Parking is available for the Mountain Legacy Route in Banff at the Cascade Ponds Picnic Area, the Fenland Picnic Area, and around the townsite.

Rebound Cycle is a bike rental shop in the city. The Legacy Trail is typically rideable until mid-October and doesn’t usually become snow-free until May.

15. Ice Climbing

If you enjoy rock climbing in the summer, you will find that ice climbing in the winter is much more fun!

Crampons, ropes, and ice axes used to ascend a frozen waterfall must be pretty impressive, right?

The freezing weather and plenty of ice waterfalls create the ideal conditions for participating in this hazardous activity. The only option if you don’t have any experience is to take a tour. Locals are frequently seen climbing outdoors on their own.

Most trips are half-day climbing experiences, but if you’d prefer, you can also arrange a full-day or multi-day expertise to show you the ropes – quite literally! These tours don’t require prior experience, and all your equipment is provided!

A tour is necessary because ice climbing is challenging without the proper training. If you believe mountain climbers give up their hobby during the winter, you’re mistaken!

Joining an ice climbing tour is a must if you think that strolling on ice through Grotto Canyon isn’t adventurous enough for you.

Ice climbing is undoubtedly a heart-pounding winter sport that is well-known in Canmore.


We appreciate you reading the article on things to do in Canmore and wish you a wonderful trip to this beautiful part of Alberta.

Canmore is a charming little town with many exciting things to see and do. Canmore is, without a doubt, one of the top destinations in the world to have a vacation or an incredible weekend getaway.

It offers everything, including rock climbing, caving, hiking, and sightseeing. On your upcoming vacation, enjoy these top Canmore attractions.

Read more from us here.


Pooja Thakur

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