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The Icefields Parkway

Hit the road to find out why National Geographic named Highway 93, otherwise known as The Icefields Parkway, one of the top 20 "drives of a lifetime". Located in the Canadian province of Alberta, the "Promenade des Glaciers", as it is known by French-Canadians, was completed in 1940 and includes a variety of accommodation options for any budget. Take note, this aesthetic path becomes quite popular during the Canadian summer months of July and August.

Before you start the drive, buy a park pass at the entrance to Jasper National Park- you’ll need this to drive the Parkway. The first stop on your journey is the town of Jasper, itself a UNESCO World Heritage site. Jasper offers Canada’s longest aerial tramway, sure to provide breathtaking views, as well as the Miette Hot Spring, which boasts the title of hottest spring in the Canadian Rockies at a steamy 54C°.

Travel south to the Columbia Icefield, most of which runs the along the Athabasca Glacier. Stop over to ride an Ice Explorer to the top where you can walk along a crystal clear, 10,000 year old piece of ice as thick as the Eiffel Tower is tall. Thirsty? Drink straight from the stream to taste the freshest water in the world as it travels its path to three different oceans. The next stop is Peyto Lake, the highest point of your journey. For a quick visit, hike a paved trail for 10 minutes to the Peyto Lake viewpoint. If you have more time to spare, follow the old fire road for phenomenal views from the Bow Summit lookout. Make sure to wear comfy shoes and pack a snack, as this route takes about 2.5 hours round trip.

The Icefields Parkway ends on a high note at Lake Louise, the first national park in Canada. Marvel at this stunning, glacier-fed body of water and watch artists create magical ice sculptures. There is no shortage of entertainment at Lake Louise, where you can enjoy paddling the water in the summer months or ice skating in the winter.

If you’re looking for another destination after Lake Louise, head east to the city of Calgary, where you can ride North America’s fastest zip line at Canada National Park.

Driving along the Mountain side

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