Stay in the know

Our Adventures and More ...

The 2024 Ultimate Guide to Adventure Tours in Banff and Canmore, Alberta

Mountains outlined in Black with text saying Adventure Awaits

Banff and Canmore are two of the most beautiful destinations in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, offering a sense of adventure and natural beauty that is hard to match. From the rugged mountain peaks to the crystal-clear lakes and rivers, there is no shortage of activities to get your heart pumping and your adrenaline flowing. In this guide, we will highlight the best adventure tours in Banff and Canmore, including Whitewater Rafting, Heli Tours, Horseback Trail Rides, and ATVing.

Water Adventures

Whitewater Rafting

Whitewater Rafting is one of the most popular water adventures in Banff and Canmore, and for a good reason. The rivers in the area offer a range of rapids, from gentle Class I to heart-pumping Class IV.

Canadian Rockies Rafting offers an array of tours to satisfy all levels of adventure; from the thrill-seeker to the first timer. With big hits and an optional cliff jump, the Horseshoe Canyon delivers the action that any thrill seeker is searching for. The Kananaskis Whitewater Tour provides the perfect balance of fun and excitement with the rolling, playful whitewater – good for all ages and abilities levels.

Rafters rafting and cliff jumping on the Bow River - Horseshoe Canyon and Kananaskis River with Canadian Rockies Rafting in Canmore, Alberta

Wild Water Adventures takes it up a notch on the world-famous Kicking Horse River. Located just outside Golden, BC, just west of Banff, the Kicking Horse River, offers some of the most challenging rapids in the area. They have crafted a variety of tours to cater to all adventure levels, beginner to advanced, there is something for everyone to get out on the river.

Rafters hitting a big wave on the Kicking Horse River while rafting with Wild Water Adventures

Float Tours

For those looking for a slower and more relaxed pace, float tours offered through Canadian Rockies Rafting and Canmore Raft Tours, give guests exactly that. Gently flow down the Bow River as you take in the stunning 360-degree views of some of the tallest peaks in the front range of the Canadian Rocky Mountains. Being on the water provides a unique perspective and vantage point of the surroundings that you can’t quite match from land.

Floating down the Bow River in Canmore, Alberta, guests gaze at the Three Sisters

Air Adventures

Heli Tours

If you’re looking for a bird’s eye view of Banff and Canmore, a Heli Tour is the way to go. Alpine Helicopters have a variety of tours that take you high above the mountains, offering stunning panoramic views of the area.  To make your flight over the glaciers and peaks of the Canadian Rockies that much more epic, there is also the option to add on a glacier landing or hiking tour.

View from a helicopter as the flight soars over glacial fed waters and peaks of the Canadian Rocky Mountains close to Banff and Canmore, Alberta

Land Adventures

Horseback Trail Riding

Boundary Ranch, situated in Kananaskis Country, only a short drive from Banff and Canmore, have been saddling up riders for well over 30+ years. Horseback riding is a classic way to explore the rugged terrain of the Rocky Mountains, and there are plenty of tours to choose from. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced rider, there’s a tour for you.

Horseback Trail Ride through alpine meadows with stunning 360 views of the mountain landscape close to Banff and Canmore, Alberta

ATV Tours

Toby Creek Adventures, based out of Panorama, BC., is your closest operator from Banff and Canmore for a more adrenaline-fueled land adventure, an ATV tour. These tours take you off-road, allowing you to explore the rugged terrain in a thrilling way. Visit remnants of a 1900s Silver Mining Town or venture out to a hidden waterfall, an experience only accessible via ATV.

ATVs parked at an historic cabin at the base of a mountain range, the closest ATV experience to Banff and Canmore, Alberta

Cave Tours

Canmore Cave Tours take you underground to explore the caverns of Rat’s Nest Cave under Grotto Mountain. One of the longest caves in Canada, it’s home to ancient pictographs and 7000-year-old bones. The cave has no lights, handrails, or walkways, which only adds to the adventure, as you explore the cave in its natural state, just like the original explorers did. It’s a different side the Canadian Rocky Mountains that will definitely be an experience to remember.

Cavers exploring the caverns and cave features in the Rat's Nest Cave at Grotto Mountain in Canmore, Alberta

Canyon Tours

 Bow Valley Canyon Tours provide adrenaline-pumping adventures that immerse you right into waterfalls as you rappel, jump, and slide your way down the canyon walls. If you’ve never experienced canyoning before, the Heart Creek Canyon Tour is the perfect way to ease you into the sport. Seasoned canyoner? No problem, Castle Canyon delivers five challenging rappels, a 12-foot jump and numerous pools to swim through. It’s the Rocky Mountains, up close and personal, an unforgettable experience to do while visiting.

Rappelling down a canyon waterfall into one of the standing pools close to Banff and Canmore

Pursuit Collective

The Pursuit Collective includes several different experiences, including the Banff Gondola, Lake Minnewanka Cruise, Columbia Icefields Adventure and Skywalk, and the Golden Skybridge. Each of these attractions offers a different perspective on the beauty of Banff National Park and the surrounding area.

 The Banff Gondola is a must-visit attraction for anyone visiting Banff. The gondola takes visitors to the top of Sulphur Mountain, where they can enjoy stunning views of the town and surrounding mountains. At the top, visitors can also explore the boardwalk, visit the gift shop, and grab a bite to eat at the restaurant.

Top portion of photo features the Banff Gondola overlooking Rundle Mountain range.
Bottom portion of photo features the Lake Minnewanka Cruise boat cruising through the lake past snow capped mountains
Both awesome adventures in the heart of Banff

A fantastic way to experience the beauty of Lake Minnewanka is to set sail on a 1-hour scenic tour of the lake, with stunning views of the surrounding mountains and wildlife and learn about the history of the lake itself.

For the more adventurous, the Columbia Icefields Adventure offers a chance to explore the Athabasca Glacier. Visitors can ride on a massive ice explorer vehicle and walk on the glacier itself, learning about the history and geology of the area along the way.

Top portion of photo features the Athabasca Glacier with people outside the Ice Explorer vehicle venturing out to step foot on the surface.
Bottom portion of the photo showcases the glass bottom bridge of the Skywalk surrounded by the peaks of mountains

Just down the road, The Skywalk, is a unique attraction that offers a thrilling experience for visitors. The Skywalk is a glass-bottomed walkway that extends out from a cliff, offering stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.

The newest attraction to the collective, is the Golden Skybridge. With two suspension bridges, a mountain coaster, canyon swing, zip line, high ropes course, a climbing wall, axe throwing, café and gift shop, there is something for everyone here. Not to mention, the breath-taking views of Golden, British Columbia.

Top portion of the photo features one of the two suspension bridges as the sun sets behind the mountains.
Bottom portion of the photo features a section of the mountain coaster showing the view of forest and mountains

Hassle Free Shuttles

Via Via Moraine Lake Shuttle is one of the options that locals and visitors alike have to explore one the the most photographed landscapes in the world, Moraine Lake. With service offering multiple departures and returns, it’s makes adventure plans more flexible so you can be sure to explore the surrounding area and not just the lake itself. With the earliest departure set for 3AM, you will be sure to capture the first moments of the day when the sun kisses the peaks and then continues to light up the valley. Not that early of a bird? They do offer shuttles throughout the day to match your travel itinerary.

Moraine Lake Shuttle

Hop on Banff is a hop-on-hop-off bus service take you to Banff, Johnston Canyon, Lake Louise Gondola and Chairlift, Lake Louise Village, Lake Louise, and Moraine Lake without the hassle of parking or traffic. With a purchase of a Day Pass, spend as much, or as little, time as you like at each location. Though this isn’t a guided experience, the bus hosts are always happy to share their knowledge and experiences with you about each area. Hop on and make the most out of your adventure.

People standing outside a yellow bus to takes them home after an adventure at the foot of the rock pile at Moraine Lake in Banff National Park

Banff and Canmore offer a sense of adventure and natural beauty that is hard to match. Whether you are looking for a heart-pumping Whitewater Rafting adventure, a breath-taking Heli Tour, a classic Horseback Trail Ride, or a thrilling ATV tour, there is something for everyone.

For more information about any of the details above or to book into one of the exciting adventures please give us a call at 403-678-6535.