It’s absolutely not a shock for me to sit down to write a blog post in the form of a love letter to the Canadian Rockies. Over the years I have been fortunate enough to travel to Alberta and British Columbia on several occasions, and each time was life changing. Most recently on a getaway with Rebecca to Banff, I truly felt a sense of stillness again, which for those of you who follow me will know is something I crave amid the fabulous non-stop life I lead. There are destinations and experiences in this world that hold what I can only describe as magic, and I’m about to venture off to yet another one with Julio.
The best part? He’s never been and is about to see why I love this part of Canada so much.
So, where are we going and what are we going to do you ask? Well, I am very excited to finally share with you all that the team at Pursuit Banff Jasper have invited Julio and I to join them in both Banff, Alberta and Golden, British Columbia for even more outdoor experiences like only they can create.
Specifically, the highly anticipated opening of Railrider Mountain Coaster and Golden Sky Bridge will be highlights of my spring and summer travel, I have no doubt! So let’s go through our itinerary so that you know exactly what to expect when you follow along with us on social media, and hopefully this play by play helps you to know what to do when you book the experiences for yourself!
Getting to Banff is actually quite easy from Calgary, and I would recommend booking the Brewster Express from YYC. From there you can enjoy the ride into the Rockies, which for those of you who have never been, is majestic.
We will be staying at The Mount Royal Hotel, which offers the ambiance of a mountain chalet in the heart of Banff. The hotel’s history goes back 109 years when it was originally called the Banff Hotel. The hotel first opened in 1908, making it one of Banff’s most historic places to stay. Each wing of the hotel represents a different decade that the hotel was alive and well for, offering a unique stay for each guest.
We will of course put on some good hiking boots or shoes and be off to walk the streets, explore the local businesses, grab a drink and explore the scenery that Banff has to offer. Speaking of meals, I would be remiss to say we don’t have some pretty spectacular meals planned!
Dinner at Brazen will of course be spectacular based upon previous meals. Brazen Restaurant and Lounge, is a new and bold dining experience in the heart of the Town of Banff. Set in the historic Mount Royal Hotel, it focuses on sharable plates, dinner classics with a modern-day twist and cocktails inspired by Banff’s bold characters and days gone by.
Post dinner I have no doubt that Julio will want to explore Banff at night and then it will be off to the hotel for a good night’s rest.
The next morning it will be back to Brazen for breakfast to fuel up for a busy day with the Pursuit Banff Jasper team and fellow media members!
First up on our first day, we will head to Lake Minnewanka for a boat cruise with Lake Minnewanka Cruise, who continue a tradition of connection in one of Banff’s most iconic locations. From human history that dates back over 10,000 years to the boat tours that have thrilled visitors for over a century, the timeless beauty of Lake Minnewanka has inspired wonder for countless generations.
After what I can only imagine will be a stunning experience on the water, it will be time to head to Golden, British Columbia. Along the 2.5 hour drive in the Rockies, we will have a chance to take in the majestic views and energy which for Julio and I is so important. Upon arrival we will check into the Prestige Inn Golden. After a quick refresh it’ll be time for dinner at Rockwater Grill and Bar, followed by a stroll to explore the area with Julio.
The next morning, it is all about the new experiences waiting for those adventurers like us headed to Golden for the
Railrider Mountain Coaster, Golden Sky Bridge and all the experiences now available for booking. The excitement will be palpable on this day of our itinerary. Why?
“Pursuit is excited to launch the Railrider Mountain Coaster – a 3,375-foot mountain coaster at the Golden Skybridge in Golden, B.C. The Railrider Mountain Coaster is the first of its kind in Western Canada and will be the fastest and largest mountain coaster in Canada. Golden Skybridge launched in May of 2021, beginning with its operation of the two highest suspension bridges in Canada, sitting at 130- and 80-meters high, showcasing 360 views of Kootenay Rockies. The two bridges perch 426 feet above an expansive canyon.”
If you’re anything like me when it comes to adventure and nature tourism, this sounds absolutely spectacular. I do wonder how many times they’ll let me ride the coaster because once will NOT be enough for this thrill seeker!
But of course there is so much more to see and do – soar through the sky on the zipline, climb towards the clouds on the rock wall or try your hand at axe throwing – there’s fun for everyone at Golden Skybridge and I couldn’t be more excited to share this with Julio and take you all along with me.
After a fun filled day, it’ll be back to Banff for us to check back into The Mount Royal Hotel and enjoy some free time. For those of you who have never been to Banff before, some suggestions that have been made to me that I wanted to share with you all include:
- Walk along the picturesque Bow River.
- Shop along Banff Ave. Check out shops here.
- Hike on any of the trails available in the area, but be mindful of footwear and incline.
Being that this will sadly be our last day, it will culminate with Dinner at Sky Bistro which is set atop Sulphur Mountain and is nothing short of awe inspiring in both the menu and views. Sky Bistro is the dining sanctuary in the sky. Pairing the grandeur of the Rocky Mountains with a distinctly Canadian menu that features the unique flavours of Canada through a handpicked selection of regionally sourced local meats, produce and ingredients.
We will grab a very early breakfast at Farm & Fire before taking our Brewster Express back to Calgary to catch our flight back to Ottawa.
Launched in June of 2020, the Farm & Fire is one of Banff’s newest and exciting restaurant. The menu designed by Chef Scott Hergott, recognized for his award-winning culinary innovation at the Banff Gondola’s Sky Bistro, pays homage to wood-fired and slow-roasted staples. Hergott’s farm-to-table philosophy is evident throughout the menu with each dish
punctuating his simple and fresh approach.
I cannot wait to bring you with us on this trip, and to hopefully help you all get inspired to explore more of Canada this year.
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Photos: Daniel Reyes Cocka and participating brands
Don’t forget to be kind & laugh a little more this year
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