Best stops on the drive from Whistler to Jasper

Two of my favorite places in Canada are Whistler in BC and Jasper in Alberta. In fact, one of my favorite things I’ve ever done during my 2 years living in Whistler was take a road trip from Whistler all the way to Jasper. This is one stunning drive and takes in popular tourist stops like Lake Louise and Icefields Parkway as well as lesser-known stops like Bow Lake and Athabasca Falls.

The drive from Whistler to Jasper is 740 km (460 miles) on the shortest route, this route takes 8.5 hours without stops. But I actually recommend taking the longer 963 km route on the Trans-Canada highway which takes you via Lake Louise. This route takes 11 hours and 40 minutes without stops. In this blog post I will focus on the longer route via Lake Louise as it is so pretty and there’s so much to see!

Whether you take the short or long route I advise allowing a few days to see all the stops properly.

Taking a road trip is one of the best things to do in Whistler and the Whistler to Jasper route is easily one of the most scenic drives in the world. We also recently completed a road trip from Banff to Jasper and a road trip from Whistler to Banff and I must admit both were pretty epic too!

12 best stops on the drive from Whistler to Jasper via Lake Louise

birkenhead lake near Pemberton Canada
Us taking in the views at Birkenhead Lake, near Pemberton!

There are so many great places to stop between Whistler and Jasper and some are quick stops like Sicamous and others are require more time (or even a few nights). As I mentioned the route I will describe in this blog post is the longer driving route via Lake Louise which is 963 km (598 miles). I recommend allowing 4 full days for this road trip, spending the night in Kamloops, Reverlstoke and Lake Louise.

Keep in mind the weather when driving this route as conditions can get pretty snowy and icy during the Winter months especially around Revelstoke and Glacier National Park of Canada.

1. Pemberton

joffre lakes with a dusting of snow
The stunning Joffre Lakes!

Just under a 30 minute drive from Whistler is the small town of Pemberton. It’s the perfect stop for a coffee at Mt Currie on Arbutus Street, home to the best coffee in the Whistler area. If you’re hungry you can’t go wrong with the burgers at Mile One Eating House.

If you have time one of the best things to do in Pemberton is to hike to Joffre Lakes – this hike can take up to 5 hours to complete. I would say it’s a medium level of difficulty as there are a couple of uphill sections – a reasonable level of fitness is required for this trail. But, I promise the views along the way and the glacier-fed lakes (gatorade blue in color) are well worth the long hike in. In Summer or on warmer days you can go swimming in any of the 3 lakes but be warned they are very cold – an average water temperature of 45 fahrenheit (7 celsius)!! The Joffre Lakes hike is super-popular and the car parks fill up early so get here early to secure a spot.

2. Kamloops

kamloops sunset
Sunset over Kamloops – look at that sky!

The city of Kamloops is a great place to spend the first night of your road trip from Whistler to Jasper. There’s awesome restaurants, craft breweries and wineries a-plenty. Forno on 5th has a Mediterranean inspired menu and is a lovely modern restaurant in downtown Kamloops. Whilst, Bright Eye Brewing and Monte Creek Ranch Winery are also worth a visit if you love beer and/or wine.

Pay a visit to Riverside Park for a walk in the evening there’s a sandy river beach, various walking trails and live music events some weekend evenings. If you’re travelling with kids a great place to take them is to the BC Wildlife Park. This is a zoo which homes native animals like grizzly bears and arctic wolves.

There are two hotels I highly recommend in Kamloops – Best Western Plus a 3 star hotel with an indoor pool and the luxurious Delta Hotel by Marriott

If you’re driving from Vancouver to Kamloops you may be interested in this GPS-guided audio tour that is sure to turn this scenic drive into into a sightseeing and trivia game adventure!

Fun fact – Jurassic World 3 and Twilight Zone were both recently filmed in the Kamloops area.

3. Sicamous

sicamous beach at sunset

The Sicamous area has over 1000km of coastline so it’s no surprise that some of the best things to do here are water-related. Swim in the warm waters of Sicamous Beach Park or try kayaking, canoeing or SUP paddle boarding all popular activities here.

Treat yourself to homemade ice cream and artisan cheese at D Dutchman Dairy, this bright red building can’t be missed from the road and is very photogenic. We also loved Blondies Cafe for great coffee and yummy smoothie bowls.

Spend your first or second night of the road trip in Sicamous, I loved the Pines Motel which is very reasonably priced.

Did you know – Sicamous is known as the houseboat capital of Canada

4. Revelstoke mountain and town

revelstoke mountain covered in snow

‘Small town charm, big mountain adventure” is the motto here in Revelstoke. In the town there’s lots to do, think small museums, a brewery tour, an escape room and even axe-throwing.

Revelstoke mountain is the mecca of alpine mountain biking and offers incredible lift accessed biking. If you’re visiting in Winter – the mountain has 65 ski runs. Whilst, in the Summer you can enjoy the Pipe Mountain Coaster, the Aerial Adventure Park and of course the mountain biking as mentioned above. No matter the season, there’s a full day of activities at the Resort.

Another unique activity near Revelstoke town is the Enchanted Forest – the fairytale themed buildings are great for kids. It’s also home to BC’s tallest treehouse.

I advise spending the night in Revelstoke to break up your journey from Whistler to Banff nicely. I loved the Mount Revelstoke Alpine Chalets!

5. Glacier National Park of Canada

glacier national park mountains
Mountain views in Glacier National Park

Glacier Park is an adventure-junkies heaven. Climb up mountain peaks, camp next to a glacier-fed river, go hiking amongst the stunning scenery and take a mountain bike ride on one of the trails. One of my favorite hikes in the park is the 7.2 km trail that takes you along the abandoned railway tracks of Canada’s first trans-continental railway. You can even explore what’s left behind of the Glacier House hotel – Western Canada’s first luxury mountain resort. A series of avalanches starting in the year 1910 caused the railway line which passed the hotel to be moved, thus taking away their tourist traffic and so it eventually closed and was left to go to ruin!

Did you know – the Glacier National Park is home to the world’s only inland cedar rainforest.

6. Emerald Lake

emerald lake yoho national park alberta
Those reflections!

Emerald Lake is located in Yoho National Park and it’s one of the most popular and photographed in the area. It’s the largest lake in the park and is surrounded by the President mountain range.

Located just a few kilometres off of the TransCanada highway. Emerald Lake gets its name because it looks emerald green on a sunny day it gets its unique color from the glacial waters which refract light.

The hike around the lake, clocking in at about an hour, is a great way to see the lake as well as the world-famous Burgess Shale fossil beds, the Michael glacier, and an avalanche slope carpeted by meadows where moose often graze. Other than moose you are likely to see bald eagles, ospreys and waterfowl around the lakes edge.

Canoe and rowboat rentals are available to rent here, as are cross-country skis and snowshoes in the winter. Fishing at Emerald Lake is also quite popular during the summer months.

7. Lake Louise

lake louise in summer
What a view!

Lake Louise is world famous for its gatorade-blue waters and it attracts millions of visitors every year. The Victoria Glacier, the luxurious Fairmont Lake Louise hotel, and the incredible hiking trail and skiing on offer all add to its appeal.

Rent a canoe from the boat dock and see the lake from a different perspective. Worth noting is that Lake Louise is frozen over half the year, so, ice skating is a popular activity during the winter. You can also enjoy sleigh rides, ice climbing, skiing, and snowshoeing during these colder months.

Pop into Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise for lunch or spend the night here if you want to feel really fancy.

In Lake Louise you can book onto a full-day hiking tour through the Canadian Rockies taking in sights such as Victoria Glacier, hanging valleys and of course some epic viewpoints of Lake Louise itself.

8. Bow Lake

bow lake near lake louise

Bow Lake is approximately 30 minutes north of Lake Louise, off the Icefields Parkway (Hwy 93) The lake sits at an elevation of 1920 meters and spends most of the year locked away in ice. This makes it a popular spot for winter activities like snowshoeing and ski touring. While during the Summer many tourists rent a canoe and take it out on the lake.

The Bow Lakeshore is a great family-friendly hike. If you’re looking to stretch your legs and enjoy the sublime nature along the shoreline, it’s the perfect stop and one of the easiest hikes in Banff. The trail is a nice mellow grade and gains no elevation. It does move over some large sections of roots, so a stroller would not work on the lakeshore trail.

9. Peyto Lake

Peyto Lake Alberta
Look at the color of that water!

**Importand info – Peyto Lake will not be open to tourists until August 2021.

Peyto Lake is famous for its turquoise blue glacier-fed waters. The brilliant display of blue is fed by the Peyto Glacier high above the lake and part of the Wapta Icefield.

It is located 50 km north of Lake Louise and a popular stop on the drive from Whistler to Banff.

The viewpoint is one of the most spectacular in all of Banff National Park and a super popular spot for photographers. In my opinion, its as pretty as nearby Moraine Lake but without the crowds. The trail to the viewpoint starts at the far end of the car park. The hike up to Peyto Lake Lookout is short and sweet and takes around 10-15 minutes uphill.

10. Columbia Icefields

columbia icefields skywalk

The Columbia Icefields is one of the most unique stops on the drive from Banff to Jasper and it’s the largest icefield in the Canadian Rockies. You can join a walking tour that takes you right onto the Athabasca glacier! We choose to just visit the Icefield Skywalk as we were short on time. It’s a glass-floored lookout, which was a little scary but it’s well-worth it as along the way you learn about the story of the Icefields. You will also be treated to an epic view of the Sunwapta Valley.

If you’re hungry you can grab a bite to eat here – there’s a casual restaurants and a fancier option. Just time it right as they can both get very busy with tour groups.

IMPORTANT INFO – to drive through the Icefields Parkway you need to purchase a daily pass which costs $10 per adult or $20 for a family of up to 7 people travelling in one vehicle. These daily passes expire at 4 pm the next day. To purchase your pass there are pass kiosks located at each end of the Icefields Parkway near Lake Louise and Jasper. They can also be purchased online at Banff/Lake Louise Tourism.

11. Sunwapta Falls

the trail to sunwapta falls

Fed by the Athabasca Glacier, the Sunwapta Falls is a stunning place to stop. The falls are 18 meters tall. This site is good for a quick stop – the upper falls can be viewed from the car park if you’re short on time. You can go white-water rafting (imagine!) and there are many awesome hiking trails two of the most popular being the hikes to the Lower and Upper Falls.

12. Athabasca Falls

athabasca falls alberta canada

This waterfall stemming from the Athabasca River is 23-meters tall. There are a number of lookout points where you can see the power of the falls. The falls itself are not very high compared to others in the Canadian Rockies, but the size of the river makes these falls one of the most powerful in the country!

13. Jasper

jasper national park picnic spot views
kayaking in Jasper Canada
Us kayaking in Jasper National Park!

Jasper is one of my favorite towns in Canada, when I visited I could really imagine myself living there. Not only is it incredibly scenic, it’s the right mix of small town charm with lots of activities and great restaurants. Some of my favorite restaurants/Cafes in Jasper include Famoso Neapolitan PizzeriaSunhouse Cafe and Evil Dave’s Grill.

Jasper National Park requires a pass to enter, it costs $10 per adult and can be purchased from Parks Canada.

Jasper is home to the world’s second-largest dark sky preserve in the world. The annual Jasper Dark Sky Festival  is held in October every year, it draws thousands of visitors and has had guests speakers from NASA as well as Hollywood celebrities in the past. Jasper has over 1200 kms of hiking trails and some of the best in the area include Pyramid Lake and Maligne Canyon.

Another great thing to do in Jasper is to hop on the Jasper SkyTram – Canada’s highest and longest, guided aerial tramway up to the top of the 2263 meter summit. Grab some food at the restaurant at the top and views of Mount Robson (in the next state B.C). If you’re visiting Jasper in the Summer and you’re feeling adventurous then you must book onto the two hour white water rafting tour on the Athabasca River. This is grade 2 rafting so expect to get wet!

Where to stay in Jasper

Us outside our cabin at Jasper Park Lodge
  • Fairmont Jasper Park is a collection of luxurious log cabins located on the emerald-green Lac Beauvert. This is the ultimate bucket-list-worthy hotel in Jasper!
  • Chateau Jasper is a cozy hotel surrounded by the mountains of Jasper National Park and a 10 minute walk from the center of town.
  • Jasper Inn and Suites just off Highway is a cozy inn-style property with a pool and a sauna.
  • Bear Hill Lodge relaxed cabin-style accommodation (with fireplaces) surrounded by woodland.

Thanks for reading my blog, Aimee x

Me twirling at Fairmont Banff Springs – which I highly recommend to stay at!

It’s easy to see why a road trip from Whistler to Jasper is one of the best and most popular things to do in Canada. I mean, not only are there lots of amazing activities to enjoy but there are scenic mountain views, gatorade-blue lakes and the chance to spot unique wildlife.

Thanks so much for reading. I hope this guide has helped you plan the perfect road trip between Banff and Jasper! If you found this blog helpful, be sure to browse around some more! I have guides on Canadian road trip tipsluxury vacation to Whistler as well as doing a ski season in Whistler and so much more!!

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 Taking a road trip from Whistler  to Jasper. This is one stunning drive and includes stops at Lake Louise and Icefields Parkway

Best stops on the drive from Banff to Jasper

Two of my favorite places in Canada are Banff and Jasper in Alberta. In fact, one of my favorite things I’ve ever done during my 2 years living in Whistler was take a road trip from Banff to Jasper. This is one stunning drive and takes in the most beautiful lakes in Canada like Lake Louise and Peyto Lake as well as the famed Columbia Icefields.

The drive from Banff to Jasper is a whopping 288 km (179 miles) which will take 3.5 hours without stops but I recommend allowing 2 full days to complete this gorgeous drive – there is just so much to see on the way! Most of the stops I’ve listed in this blog post are close to each other so you don’t have to do any really long bouts of driving.

Taking a road trip is one of the best things to do in Banff  and the Banff to Jasper route is easily one of the most scenic drives in the world. We also recently completed a road trip from Whistler to Banff and the drive from Whistler to Jasper and I must admit both were pretty epic too!

In this blog, I list 8 of the best stops on the drive from Banff to Jasper.

8 Best Stops Between Banff and Jasper

Typical scenes on the drive from Banff to Jasper!

Taking the AB-93 North, you will first come across Vermillion Lakes and Johnston Canyon before reaching a must-stop on this road trip – Lake Louise. The distance from Banff to Lake Louise is 57 km and the distance from Lake Louise to Jasper is 233 km. After Lake Louise there are several other lakes to see like Bow Lake and Peyto Lake before reaching Columbia Icefields (spend a few hours here if time allows). Then head onto Sunwapta Falls and Athabasca Falls before reaching Jasper.

Should you have time to spend the night along the way (which I highly recommend doing) consider the super-luxurious Fairmont Lake Louise at Lake Louise.

1. Vermillion Lakes

vermillion lakes alberta
The sun shining at Vermillion Lakes!

Only a 5 minute drive from Banff town is the gorgeous Vermilion Lakes. Bring a picnic or even a takeaway coffee from Banff (it is only 5 minutes drive away so it will still be hot) and sit on the lake shore and enjoy views of Mount Rundle as it looms over the still water of the lake. There’s also a short 2km boardwalk loop – a great way to stretch your legs before continuing onto Jasper. The most beautiful time at Vermillion Lakes is at sunrise so aim to get here early to watch the sun breaking over the ridgeline. 

2. Johnston Canyon

johnston canyon near banff
Johnston Canyon looking mighty fierce!

25km from Banff is the Johnston Canyon hike, a popular day hike with locals. The trails are well-maintained and relatively easy and bring you right into the canyon itself. You will also spot two huge waterfalls on the trail. It should take up to 2.5 hours to complete.

If you’re visiting Johnston Canyon in Winter a great activity is a half-day ice walk through the Canyon which takes in the iconic upper falls which has turned into a glittering tower of ice that rises 30 meters.

3. Lake Louise

girl posing at lake louise
Me enjoying the incredible scenery at Lake Louise!

Lake Louise is world famous for its gatorade-blue waters and it attracts millions of visitors every year. The Victoria Glacier, the luxurious Fairmont Lake Louise hotel, and the incredible hiking trail and skiing on offer all add to its appeal.

Rent a canoe from the boat dock and see the lake from a different perspective. Worth noting is that Lake Louise is frozen over half the year, so, ice skating is a popular activity during the winter. You can also enjoy sleigh rides, ice climbing, skiing, and snowshoeing during these colder months.

In Lake Louise you can book onto a full-day hiking tour through the Canadian Rockies taking in sights such as Victoria Glacier, hanging valleys and of course some epic viewpoints of Lake Louise itself.

You need a National Park Pass to enter Lake Louise, you can purchase one here. Cost is from $10 per adult.

4. Bow Lake

bow lake near lake louise

Bow Lake is approximately 30 minutes north of Lake Louise, off the Icefields Parkway (Hwy 93) The lake sits at an elevation of 1920 meters and spends most of the year locked away in ice. This makes it a popular spot for winter activities like snowshoeing and ski touring. While during the Summer many tourists rent a canoe and take it out on the lake.

The Bow Lakeshore is a great family-friendly hike. If you’re looking to stretch your legs and enjoy the sublime nature along the shoreline, it’s the perfect stop and one of the easiest hikes in Banff. The trail is a nice mellow grade and gains no elevation. It does move over some large sections of roots, so a stroller would not work on the lakeshore trail.

5. Peyto Lake

peyto lake viewpoint
Look at the color of that water!

Peyto Lake is famous for its turquoise blue glacier-fed waters. The brilliant display of blue is fed by the Peyto Glacier high above the lake and part of the Wapta Icefield.

It is located 50 km north of Lake Louise and a popular stop on the drive from Banff to Jasper.

The viewpoint is one of the most spectacular in all of Banff National Park and a super popular spot for photographers. In my opinion, its as pretty as nearby Moraine Lake but without the crowds. The trail to the viewpoint starts at the far end of the car park. The hike up to Peyto Lake Lookout is short and sweet and takes around 10-15 minutes uphill.

6. Columbia Icefields

columbia icefields skywalk

The Columbia Icefields is one of the most unique stops on the drive from Banff to Jasper and it’s the largest icefield in the Canadian Rockies. You can join a walking tour that takes you right onto the Athabasca glacier! We choose to just visit the Icefield Skywalk as we were short on time. It’s a glass-floored lookout, which was a little scary but it’s well-worth it as along the way you learn about the story of the Icefields. You will also be treated to an epic view of the Sunwapta Valley.

If you’re hungry you can grab a bite to eat here – there’s a casual restaurants and a fancier option. Just time it right as they can both get very busy with tour groups.

IMPORTANT INFO – to drive through the Icefields Parkway you need to purchase a daily pass which costs $10 per adult or $20 for a family of up to 7 people travelling in one vehicle. These daily passes expire at 4 pm the next day. To purchase your pass there are pass kiosks located at each end of the Icefields Parkway near Lake Louise and Jasper. They can also be purchased online at Banff/Lake Louise Tourism.

7. Sunwapta Falls

the trail to sunwapta falls

Fed by the Athabasca Glacier, the Sunwapta Falls is a stunning place to stop. The falls are 18 meters tall. This site is good for a quick stop – the upper falls can be viewed from the car park if you’re short on time. You can go white-water rafting (imagine!) and there are many awesome hiking trails two of the most popular being the hikes to the Lower and Upper Falls.

8. Athabasca Falls

athabasca falls alberta canada

This waterfall stemming from the Athabasca River is 23-meters tall. There are a number of lookout points where you can see the power of the falls. The falls itself are not very high compared to others in the Canadian Rockies, but the size of the river makes these falls one of the most powerful in the country!

9. Jasper

jasper national park picnic spot views
lake in Jasper National Park
Typical lakeside views in Jasper National Park

Jasper is one of my favorite towns in Canada, when I visited I could really imagine myself living there. Not only is it incredibly scenic, it’s the right mix of small town charm with lots of activities and great restaurants. Some of my favorite restaurants/Cafes in Jasper include Famoso Neapolitan Pizzeria; Sunhouse Cafe and Evil Dave’s Grill.

Jasper National Park requires a pass to enter, it costs $10 per adult and can be purchased from Parks Canada.

Jasper is home to the world’s second-largest dark sky preserve in the world. The annual Jasper Dark Sky Festival  is held in October every year, it draws thousands of visitors and has had guests speakers from NASA as well as Hollywood celebrities in the past. Jasper has over 1200 kms of hiking trails and some of the best in the area include Pyramid Lake and Maligne Canyon.

Another great thing to do in Jasper is to hop on the Jasper SkyTram – Canada’s highest and longest, guided aerial tramway up to the top of the 2263 meter summit. Grab some food at the restaurant at the top and views of Mount Robson (in the next state B.C). If you’re visiting Jasper in the Summer and you’re feeling adventurous then you must book onto the two hour white water rafting tour on the Athabasca River. This is grade 2 rafting so expect to get wet!

Where to stay in Jasper

sunrise at fairmont jasper park
The view from our cabin at Fairmont Jasper Park!
  • Fairmont Jasper Park is a collection of luxurious log cabins located on the emerald-green Lac Beauvert. This is the ultimate bucket-list-worthy hotel in Jasper!
  • Chateau Jasper is a cozy hotel surrounded by the mountains of Jasper National Park and a 10 minute walk from the center of town.
  • Jasper Inn and Suites just off Highway is a cozy inn-style property with a pool and a sauna.
  • Bear Hill Lodge relaxed cabin-style accommodation (with fireplaces) surrounded by woodland.

Thanks for reading my blog, Aimee x

sunset at Fairmont Jasper Park
Thanks for reading!

It’s easy to see why a road trip from Banff to Jasper is one of the best and most popular things to do in Canada. I mean, not only are there lots of amazing activities to enjoy but there are scenic mountain views, gatorade-blue lakes and the chance to spot unique wildlife.

Thanks so much for reading. I hope this guide has helped you plan the perfect road trip between Banff and Jasper! If you found this blog helpful, be sure to browse around some more! I have guides on  unique things to do in Whistler; Canadian road trip tips, luxury vacation to Whistler as well as doing a ski season in Whistler and so much more!!

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A road trip is one of the best things to do in Banff and the Banff to Jasper route is the most scenic drive in the world. Here, I list 8 of the best stops!

Luxury travel in Whistler (for the glamorous traveler)

Introducing the scenic town of Whistler nestled in the mountains of British Columbia. We lived in Whistler for two years (from 2015 – 2017) and honestly it’s the prettiest place we’ve ever called home. This is despite us living in some of the most beautiful cities in the world including Sydney and Queenstown. We’re here today to tell you why you should make Whistler your next luxury travel destination.

Whistler is the perfect destination for travelers seeking a glamorous trip

Whistler is picture-perfect, it’s one of those places that has you saying ‘wow’ every 10 steps. It’s renowned the world over for its skiing, but for me there’s so much more to Whistler. From luxury hotels back-dropped by snow-capped mountains to some of the best restaurants in the world – Whistler has everything you could ask for of a luxury travel destination.

Lucky too that there are so many unique things to do in Whistler! Would you believe you can go bobsledding here and even take on one of the longest ziplines in the world.

Stay at the best luxury hotels in town

The Four Seasons located in Whistler’s upper village provides an epic panorama of Blackcomb Mountain. Inside the hotel massive open fireplaces welcome you with open arms and the rooms although luxurious provide a home away from home experience.

Right next door is the beautiful and grand Fairmont Chateau Whistler. The Fairmont is my absolute favourite hotel in town (although I may be biased as I worked here for two years). Boasting 500+ rooms but with all the ambience and personality of a small hotel – the Fairmont is best address in Whistler.

If you’re looking for something a little smaller and more ’boutique’, then look no further than Nita Lake Lodge. Nita Lake Lodge is considered one of the best hotels in the Whistler area. Built on the serene Nita Lake and a 5 minute drive from Whistler village – Nita Lake provides the tranquil and luxurious experience that most tourists to Whistler are looking for.

Hilton Whistler Resort and Spa – right in the center of Whistler Village and very close to the gondola, this large hotel is very popular with families.

The Westin – is a nice luxury option in Whistler’s lower village, it’s right next to the gondola and the rooms are spacious with great views.

Our recommended activities for the adventurous traveler

There are lots of adrenalin-fuelled activities in Whistler – it is after all the adventure capital of Canada! Whistler has everything from dog-sledding the nearby Callaghan Valley, a wine tasting tour of Whistler village and surrounding areas and heli-skiing over Whistler Blackcomb Mountain. Some slightly more tame activities (but still equally as fun) include kayaking in one of the lakes in town. A lightweight inflatable kayak is your best option for the calm waters here. My favorite place to kayak is Lost Lake or Alpha Lake.

All once-in-a-lifetime experiences, I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Another bucket-list activity that you must do if you have time is drive the scenic road between Whistler and Banff. I advise allowing up to 5 days for this epic road trip!

How to best spend a relaxing day in Whistler

In the summer a walk to Lost Lake is a must-see.  A beautiful nature trail that offers a true Pacific Northwest nature experience. Sit on the banks of the lake and take in the magnificent views or if you’re feeling brave take a swim in its refreshing waters. The best cafe in my opinion is Camp Coffee & Lifestyle Co. in Function Junction – fantastic coffee in a modern lifestyle store.

nita lake lodge, luxury travel whistler
Nita Lake Lodge

The most delicious restaurants in Whistler and their best dishes

My number one choice is Rimrock Cafe near Creekside Village. It is continually ranked as the top restaurant in Whistler, it provides both a unique dining experience and the best fish dishes’ in all of British Columbia, in my opinion. A close second is Araxi in Whistler village which has some very innovative dishes including Quebec Rabbit dish (which is my personal favourite) . Also, worth a mention is Bearfoot Bistro with its famed wine cellar – it has one of the most extensive wine cellars in all of Canada. Their butter poached Atlantic Salmon is amzing.

Let’s talk desserts- where to find the best desserts in Whistler

Purebread is famous in Whistler. You won’t miss it, as there is usually a long winding queue out this small Cafe’s door. Their tantalising display of sweets has everything from Sticky Toffee Pudding to Raspberry Cheesecake Brownie. Pure mouth-watering bliss.

The best spas in Whistler

Scandinave Spa allows you to relax in the heart of nature. A nordic-inspired 20,000 square foot outdoor spa surrounded by cedar trees. Soak in the outdoor hot tub and experience the beautiful vista of Whistlers natural beauty.

backcountry hut whistler blackcomb
Backcountry hut on Whistler Blackcomb

End the day on a high – the best sunset spot in town

Lost Lake, in particular the huge pier along the right-side of the lake is an amazing setting to catch the sunset over the mountains. Green Lake outside of town is a great spot too. If you don’t fancy venturing too far from town why not grab a drink and sit on the large patio of Garibaldi Lift Company. It’s one of the highest patios in town and you will be able to spot Blackcomb, Whistler, Sproatt and Rainbow mountains from your prime position.

Lucky for you after the sun sets in Whistler you are treated to an alpenglow. Which is when the light illuminates the mountain peaks shades of orange and pink. It’s most dramatic in Winter when the peaks still have snow on them.

The best places to go for some evening drinks in Whistler

Bar Oso offers a profusion of Spanish-influenced small plates and fantastic cocktails in a cosy yet sophisticated environment. With 20,000 plus wine bottles, Bearfoot Bistro’s wine cellar is a must-see, you can also try your hand at sabering a bottle of champagne.

Why not read next – the best tips for the best Canadian roadtrip

Luxury travel in Whistler is certainly becoming more popular with fantastic 5-star hotels and fine dining restaurants scattered throughout this picture-perfect village. Whistler has everything for the traveler who loves luxury.

Tell me, have you ever visited Whistler? What did you think? We’d love to read about it in the comment section below.

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Whistler is a perfect destination for travelers seeking a glamorous trip. We explain why you should choose Whistler as your next luxury travel destination.


An honest experience of living in Whistler



You want to know what living in Whistler is really like. In this blog post, I’ll give you the lowdown on finding a job, finding an apartment and whether its better to be a skier or a snowboarder in Whistler.

Whistler has been my home for the past two years, and what a crazy, beautiful madness it is. Living in Whistler  is unlike anywhere else I’ve ever lived. It’s an adrenalin-junkie’s dream with skiing & snowboarding being the sport of choice in the Winter. Which winter sport you choose will determine your destiny here, more on that below.

I’m sure you’ve already heard/ read that Whistler is one of the best ski destinations in the world. And in Summer you can enjoy downhill mountain biking or kayaking in its many lakes. You can even try your hand at the very unique sports of bobsledding and axe-throwing in Whistler. There are just so many unique things to do in Whistler!

In Winter, the town almost triples its population, with young people flocking from Australia and the UK predominantly, to call this ‘Winter Wonderland’ their temporary home.

If you’re interested in applying for a Working Holiday Visa to Canada, read all my detailed instructions!

Living in Whistler: Finding suitable housing

As you can imagine, it can be very difficult to find decent housing in Whistler. It is a very competitive market and rent is incredibly expensive and most of my friends shared a room with several others. Some people even live in their campervan in the villages’ outdoor carpark (we don’t recommend this – it gets very cold in Winter). In fact I’ve written an incredibly detailed guide about renting in Whistler – I’m certain you’ll find it helpful!

To be successful in finding a place to rent in Whistler, here’s what we recommend:

  • Search in the Pique – the local online magazine classifieds section
  • Ensure you have good previous rental references (even if they are from overseas) and enough money for a bond and your first months rent
  • Try to arrive in Whistler before the peak seasons begin – if you’re planning to stay for the Winter season arrive in October and for the Summer season arrive in April. This way you will have more choice and slightly more reasonable rental options available to you.

How much is rent in Whistler?

Rent prices in Whistler vary massively, our two-bedroom apartment in Bayshores was $1800 CAD per month. Which was very reasonable, but the maximum number of tenants allowed was two. A big plus was it had a large wrap-around balcony and garden.

For units in Whistler village you are likely going to pay at least $2000 CAD per month for a studio, and from $2200 for a one-bedroom apartment. If you go further afield to Pemberton (a 30 minute drive) average rental prices for a one-bedroom decrease to about $1500 CAD per month. Further away in Squamish, a 45 minute drive from Whistler you’re lookign at about $1600 CAD for a one-bedroom.

If you really want to save money on rent, you can rent a bed in a room from about $500 CAD per month, this is just a bed so you will be sharing the room with one or two other people. Again this price massively depends on where the house is located and the condition of it. Some share houses are truly awful. Similarly, you can rent your own room in a share house from $1200 per room.

Read Next – doing a road trip while living in Whistler is one of the best things you can do. Our three favorites include the drive from Whistler to Banff, the road from Banff to Jasper and the long but worthwhile drive from Whistler to Jasper!

backcountry hut whistler blackcomb
Backcountry hut on Whistler Blackcomb

The best neighborhoods to live in Whistler

There are a couple of neighbourhoods in Whistler, here I will list the best/most popular. We lived in Bayshores for two full years and loved it.

  • Whistler Cay – is the closest area to Whistler village, the prices here are a little more expensive but the apartments/ houses here are generally of good condition
  • Creekside – the “original Whistler village” is a mini-village in itself and has some stores, bars and even the gondola to go up the mountain – meaning you don’t have to make your way into Whistler to ski
  • Bayshores – a family-friendly neighborhood with some beautiful chalet-style homes. It is a 10-15 minute drive into Whistler and a 15-20 minute walk to Creekside. Regular bus services operate from here.
  • Alpine Meadow/ Rainbow – home to Meadow Park Sports Center and a large supermarket. It is a very popular and relatively cheap area to rent. It’s a 10-15 minute drive into Whistler, with a regular bus service operating.
  • Function Junction/ Cheakamus Crossing – these are the first neighborhoods you will come across as you drive up from Vancouver. Function Junction is more of an industrial area with some housing scattered within, it is home to the locally famous Re-use It Center. Cheakamus Crossing is the furthest neighbourhood from Whistler village, but most of the rental units here are new.

We recommend (if your budget allows) renting a cheap airbnb whilst you look for suitable long-term housing, here’s a list of some airbnbs we recommend –

  • This Studio apartment in Whistler Village, costs from $75 CAD per night. It features a gas fireplace, Queen bed, Queen pull-out bed and is steps away from all the restaurants/ bars in Whistler.
  • This Studio Apartment located in Creekside, costs just $45 CAD per night. It is located above locals favorite Creekbread restaurant and features a seasonal pool, patio with BBQ and a hot tub (which is available all-year for a small fee).
  • This Cozy Studio on Main Street with a hot tub & pool costs from $75 CAD per night. From the Studio it is just a 7 minute walk to the base of both Whistler & Blackcomb Mountain.
  • This super-luxurious ski-in-ski-out 1 bedroom apartment in Whistler’s Upper Village is trully gorgeous. Average nightly price is $250CAD per night!
  • This Studio apartment for $130 CAD per night is located within the Mountain Side Hotel in Whistler Village. It’s ski-in-ski-out and is rated highly 9.5/10) by past guests
snowy home in whistler canada
The snow outside our home in Whistler

Living in Whistler: Finding a job

We got incredibly lucky with our apartment and our jobs, even though I had to work two jobs to ensure that I had enough money for my number one hobby – travel.  Regardless of the long hours we worked, we were incredibly happy living in Whistler. I worked at the Fairmont Chateau hotel during the day and the Mexican Corner restaurant in the evenings. My husband worked in construction in the Summer months and in the kitchen of an Italian restaurant in the Winter.

How to find a good job in Whistler

Unlike the limited amount of good housing available, there are heaps of good jobs available to you in Whistler. You have to remember that Whistler is a booming tourist destination, so, most of the jobs here are in the hospitality sector.

Below is a list if the best places to search for a job in Whistler:

  • Pique online magazine, as mentioned above the classifieds section of the Pique is where a lot of businesses will advertise available jobs
  • Craigslist – not as popular in Whistler as it is elsewhere in Canada, you will likely find short-term jobs listed here
  • Indeed – most of the large hotels or office-type businesses will advertise available jobs here
  • Word-of-mouth – get out and socialize in Whistler when you first arrive, locals know that the best jobs are obtained by a good referral from a friend or acquaintance
alta lake whistler in spring
Our ‘old home’ in Whistler. Canada

Is it expensive to live in Whistler?

Whistler is definitely expensive, but once you start earning money you will notice this less and less. Items like chicken and cheese are notoriously expensive in the supermarkets. But, thankfully you can dine out quite cheaply – firm favorite El Furniture Warehouse does meals for $5.95 CAD and a lot of other restaurants do locals deals.

Here’s a list of some of the best cheap eats in Whistler Village.

One of the best value for money supermarkets we found to be Your Independent Grocer out in Rainbow. Otherwise if you have a car you can save money on groceries by hitting up Squamish for Save-On-Foods.

Day to day costs in Whistler tend to be reasonable, for example eating out, drinking out and your takeaway coffees are no more expensive here than other major cities in Canada. Your biggest expense is of course going to be your rent. For our power we went with BC Hydro and found them to be very fair and reasonable price-wise.

My estimation is that start-up costs to move to Whistler will cost you approx. $5,000 CAD. This figure takes into account your first months rent, your rental deposit (usually half-a-months rent), a ski pass, ski gear, stuff for your apartment like bed sheets, cooking utensils etc. But thankfully most places here come fully furnished. 

Are you a snowboarder or a skiier?

I’m a skier as are most Europeans whereas the majority of Australians and Canadians prefer snowboarding. On the mountain you will likely ski with your skier friends only, and vice-versa for snowboarding. Skiing and snowboarding are at different paces. The saying goes it’s easier to learn to ski but harder to ‘get good at’, whereas snowboarding is harder to learn but easier to ‘get good at’.

gondola whistler blackcomb
Daily views on Whistler Blackcomb

Best hotels in Whistler

Hilton Whistler Resort and Spa – right in the center of Whistler Village and very close to the gondola, this large hotel is very popular with families

Nita Lake Lodge – located in Creekside, a 10 minute drive from Whistler Village and looking onto stunning Nita Lake this is one of my favorite hotels in Whistler

The Westin – is a nice luxury option in Whistler’s lower village, it’s right next to the gondola and the rooms are spacious with great views

Four Seasons Resort – this is probably the most luxurious hotel in Whistler, located in Whistler’s Upper Village and close to Blackcomb Gondola this hotel is frequented by celebrities

What we love the most about living in Whistler

We love the long cold days spent skiing, the quirky restaurants, our amazing multi-cultural group of friends, but above all we will love the fun, care-free environment Whistler seems to effortlessly emanate at all times.

Have you ever considered living in Whistler or a similar Ski resort? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below.

Thanks for reading my blog, Aimee x

Thanks for reading!

Thanks so much for reading. I hope this guide has helped you plan your move to Whistler! If you found this blog helpful, be sure to browse around some more! I have guides on  Canadian road trip tipsluxury vacation to Whistler as well as doing a ski season in Whistler and so much more!!

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What is living in Whistler really like. Here's the lowdown on finding a job & an apartment and whether its better to be a skier or a snowboarder!
What is living in Whistler really like. Here's the lowdown on finding a job & an apartment and whether its better to be a skier or a snowboarder!

***This post originally appeared in Quinns Quill Munster News

Inspiring tips for the best Canadian Roadtrip



7 inspiring tips for the best Canadian roadtrip.

Canada is possibly the best country we’ve been to for a roadtrip. Because it’s safe, the views are stunning, the roads are in good condition & easy-to-navigate. We lived in Canada (Whistler to be precise) for two years so we consider ourselves semi-experts on the topic. Here are our most inspiring tips for the best Canadian roadtrip.

Canada is probably the most visually beautiful country we’ve ever visited

It’s so diverse too, from the rainforests of British Columbia to the turquoise lakes of Alberta – there’s something to satisfy every traveller. That’s why we highly recommend adding ‘Canadian roadtrip’ to your next bucket list.

The photo opportunities are endless

On your Canadian roadtrip, you will undoubtedly add lots of gems to your photo collection. We probably stopped at least once an hour on our roadtrip, because there were too many photo opportunities. You may also suffer from whiplash from turning your head every two seconds to admire the stunning views on either side of the road.

lake louise alberta canadian roadtrip
Lake Louise, Alberta

Drive one of National Geographic’s ‘best drives in the world’

The drive from Lake Louise to Jasper is listed as one of National Geographic’s best in the world for spotting wildlife (read what they have to say here). We done it on a bleak rainy day (not ideal) but we still saw a Grizzly Bear, an Elk, countless deer, various species of birds, squirrels and raccoons. You MUST add this route to your Canadian roadtrip itinerary!

Make sure to stop in quirky roadside cafes

To find quirky restaurants like this one in Sicamous, British Columbia. I had a smoothie bowl – how have I never had one of these before?!!

Smoothie Bowl at Blondies Cafe, Sicamous, B.C.
Smoothie Bowl at Blondies Cafe, Sicamous, B.C

Rest your head at iconic hotels like Fairmont Banff Springs

Staying at bucket-list worthy hotels like the famous Banff Springs Hotel is certainly something not everyone can do on their Canadian roadtrip but if you’ve saved up a little extra we highly recommend treating yourself for a night or two.

Or you could stay at the wild and wonderful Jasper Park Lodge. With my job, I’m lucky enough to get luxury hotels like these for a fraction of the cost, even if you’re not getting a discount like we did I still highly recommend experiencing either of these properties. It’s certainly an experience I won’t be forgetting in a hurry.

viewpoint jasper national park
Admiring the view at Jasper National Park

Pose in front of epic backdrops like Lake Louise

To take epic photos like this one at the famous Lake Louise, Alberta. Despite how awesome this photo looks we were a little underwhelmed with this popular Lake, there were so many tourists which is to be expected but it made it seem a tad Disneyland-esque. We did go on a Sunday however, my recommendation is to visit early morning mid-week.

Explore off-the-beaten-track

On your Canadian roadtrip be sure to get off the beaten track and explore deep into Jasper National Park. Jasper was our favourite stop-off of the roadtrip. It’s a massive area to explore and 3 nights simply wasn’t long enough, it’s very traditionally Canadian.

Emerald Lake, Jasper National Park
Emerald Lake, Jasper National Park

Other important suggestions for your Canadian roadtrip

To always be photo-ready on your Canadian roadtrip. Always. Always. Despite constantly having a camera in my hand, my phone and laptop were never with me because when you’re experiencing all the natural beauty that Canada has to offer – why would you want to be online??

But the best thing about this trip for me was spending it with mt , because he drove the whole way so I could sit back and enjoy the scenery (but mainly because he doesn’t trust me being in front of the wheel). Men eh? Can’t live with them, can’t live without them!

Read more: what it’s really like to live in Whistler

And, there you have it – a list of our most inspiring tips for your Canadian roadtrip. We think a roadtrip should be added to everyone’s visit to Canada.

Tell me – have you done a Canadian roadtrip? We’d love to read about your experience in the comment section below.

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