The town of Banff grew up around the hot springs that were discovered in the 1880's. The Canadian Pacific Railroad's manager, William Cornelius Van Horne, realized the springs would attract visitors, so he built the Grand Banff Springs Hotel. There is a 3 mile trail if you love a good hike to the top of the upper hot springs or enjoy the glass enclosed gondola (cable car) which carries visitors to the summit in eight minutes. At the summit the viewing platforms offer beautiful vistas of the Rockies and park.
Banff is busy all year round. In winter snow sports from skiing to dog-sledding are available, while summer visitors include hikers, mountains bikers and mountaineers. For more history on the area visit the Banff Park Museum which was built in 1903 and houses specimens of animals, birds and insects.
Photos of Banff
Area: Alberta Rocky Mountains
Lakefront and Lake Views
Skiing: Downhill and Cross Country
Small Towns: Banff, Jasper & Canmore
Extensive Hiking Trails & Parks
Lake & River Fishing
Canoeing and Kayaking