Explore the most popular birding trails near Banff with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Their is popular skiing and hiking place.
We took gondola and chair lift to go up there and went loop around lakes.
It was very beautiful views and lots flowers.
It took 42 dollar for gondola ticket.
But it’s worth it and save you time for this view and hikes.

10/10 views. Paved, very short trail with steep incline to the look out. Bathrooms in the parking lot. SOOO many people acting like fools.

Today I did this hike with 3 of my kids age 8, 10 and 13. Trail is steep but I would still consider it moderate for difficulty. We got to the parking lot at 8:30am, lots of places to park, the hike took us just under 2 hours with lots of short breaks. Trail was mostly switchbacks and lots of trees so not a lot of open views, that being said the trails were wide and easy to walk on. We thought it was closer to 6km one way. I was super surprised to see how big the crowds were when we got to the top And it was only a Thursday. We did ride the gondola down just for fun. When we arrived back the parking lot was packed and so many shuttles of people.
Try this hike but do it early to avoid the large crowds!

We arrived at 7:30 to a parking lot with ~25 other cars. Very few people at the falls when we got there. The trail to ink pots was pretty easy too. All in all, took us ~2.5 hours start to finish. On the way back from ink pots the line for upper falls was ridiculously long and people were parking on the road outside the park. Definitely need to start early. If you start early bring a jacket. It was 4°C (39° F) when we began in mid July.

Went up the back route, was minimal traffic and pleasant scenery. Lots of chances to see the scenery from a wide service road which is currently in disuse. Lots of opportunities for pictures, rest, with a moderate incline that is consistent throughout. Came back down the front (75-90min) side which is very highly trafficked. Overall a decent hike.

Super easy, flat trail. About a 12km hike round trip if you turnaround at the creek/bridge. Would be perfect for trail running, biking, and snowshoeing. Not the best views of the Rockies (no clearings) and the mosquitos were pesky.

Nice and easy hike on a paved path. If you find that it is a rainy day but still want to go hiking then this is a good choice since it is not in the wide open. Most of the hike is along suspended catwalks that lead through the forest and canyon.
The lower falls has a small natural cave that you can duck through to view the falls (you will get slightly wet with mist).
The upper falls are quite nice too but make sure you turn off the paved path on your right just before the upper falls. You will descend to the water where you can see a massive dugout, a large top heavy rock, and a waterfall that you can walk behind. Well worth it.
The crowds will be less busy in the mornings of course so make this your first “quick and easy” hike of the day.

Nice easy hike up a paved trail leading to an overpopulated wooden lookout. For an even better view with no one in your way, leave behind the crowds and continue on to a three-way junction. Left leads to the upper bus parking lot while the right and middle trails continue on to a Forest loop. Take the middle trail and continue on for about a kilometre where you will run into an unmarked dirt trail on your left. Take this switchback trail up to an amazing lookout with no one around. It’s well worth it, trust me.

Undoubtedly one of the most beautiful lakes in the Rockies. The short uphill trail can get quite busy. But the view at the top is incredible.

We are not very fit at all, but we made it to the top in about two hours. Fantastic views from the top, especially from the Cosmos station. We did cheat and take the Gondola back down, which saved time and my wife's legs ;-)

It’s a great hike for beginners, bring water and a hoodie or light coat. AND GO EARLY!!!

Loved it. Not too bad of a hike. Very dog friendly. Amazing views

A tad bit more challenging than you would expect for the ‘moderate’ rating. Limited opportunity for views on the climb and the trail can be a bit repetitive given all the hairpin turns. But spectacular views at the summit.

Highly visited trail especially given the increase access due to the gondolas on site. Ok to do this hike solo - limited chance of running into wildlife.

Busy and people just stomp all over vegetation to get a good picture. Beautiful views.

Beautiful easy-moderate hike, good for all fitness levels! Bring bug spray in the summer, I did the trail yesterday and am covered in bites but it was well worth it, some beautiful views once you get to the Canyon the Sundance trail was a bit longer than I expected and the pavement wasn’t helping with the heat!

Great hike.

Great hike. The trail to upper falls is heavily trafficked. Once that is clear the trail to ink pots is smooth sailing. Great place to eat lunch and explore at the top.

14 days ago

One of the easiest and busiest hikes you can do in Banff

Two days ago we hiked up to the ink pots. It was amazing for me. I saw the swirls under the ink pots. Quiet and tranquil! Trail is pretty steep after the upper fall. Lots of mosquitos of course!

Uphill climb basically the whole way, took us just over two hours to reach the summit. We started early, but still hit big gondola crowds at the top. Had good views along the way and you can’t beat the 360 at summit. We ate at the bistro (great food) and took gondola down. I carried our one year old and my wife was carrying out soon to be second child.

Actually a lot harder than I expected. Had done tunnel mountain a few times and as both were rated as “moderate”, I assumed they were similar. Not true — this one was actually very steep at times, and I’m pretty fit. Was well worth it. Amazing views at top of gondola departure. Word of warning: TONS of tourists at top (they take gondola up).
Go early — we left at 830 and by the time we were coming down after 1130, there were lots of ppl on trail (which makes it good for single hikers).

trail is nice until you get near the summit where it turns into rocks and loose slag .. over all views were great and worth the hike.

Was definitely a thigh burner, wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. Was 6ish kms of up hill switchbacks. I’m not unfit but found it still quite difficult. Was a cool day too, wouldn’t want to do this on a hot day. The views were worth it if there wasn’t so many people up the top (because of the gondola) the hike way too many people up the top. But on the trail it was good. I felt this in the legs for days.

Lots of switchbacks and the trail was very well travelled. Heavy traffic, but can be avoided if you start early, we started at 8:30am and saw very few people on our climb up until we reached the gondola station, where it was extremely busy. On our descent the trail was much busier.

Great hike, lots of switchbacks and well worth the views once you reach the top! Can catch the gondola down for free before 10am or after 7pm for hikers. Takes roughly 2 hours to get to the top.

Good hike with a fantastic view at the end. When you get to the fork in the trail, follow the path with the tree with pink ribbon on it. Keep an ear out for grouse and partridges.

Tough climb towards the end but the final view is well worth it.

The waterfalls are ok. Make sure you get there before 9 or else the path is packed. Starts off as asphalt path to the lower and upper falls then goes off road to the ink plots. The hike itself is nothing too spectacular. No views while you are hiking as it is through the woods. The ink plots at the end are unique. If you are looking for views from high up then this is not the hike for you.

20 days ago

Good for solo hiking as trail is usually pretty busy.

Load More