Banff
Family-friendly Activities

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Our most recommended Banff Family-friendly Activities

Banff: Family Friendly Horse-Drawn Sleigh Ride

1. Banff: Family Friendly Horse-Drawn Sleigh Ride

Start your tour in Banff, where you will meet a member of the riding office, who will check you in for your sleigh ride. Now it's time to climb into the sleigh and get cozy with your loved ones under a cozy wool blanket. Hear the tinkling of sleigh bells, as the horses lead you on a journey through Banff's mountain meadows. Along the way, listen to stories from your guide and soak in the spectacular views of the valley and surrounding mountains, while keeping your eyes peeled for local wildlife, such as elk and deer. Finish your memorable excursion with a fireside warm-up stop after the ride, where you can toast a marshmallow and enjoy a warm drink back at the stables.

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Cochrane: Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary Tour

2. Cochrane: Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary Tour

Visit one of the largest sanctuaries in Canada and hear about the mission of this wolfdog rescue organization. Learn about wolfdogs during a 30-minute presentation and go inside one of the wolfdog enclosures behind a short barrier. An experienced staff member will safely lead you through the enclosure during the tour. Enjoy a self-guided sanctuary walk either before or after your tour.  Take photographs of one of the packs of wolfdogs from inside their enclosure and ask the wolfdog experts any questions you may have. Please note that there is no interaction with the wolfdogs on this tour.

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Banff National Park: 1-Hour Bow River Horseback Ride

3. Banff National Park: 1-Hour Bow River Horseback Ride

Start the tour in Banff where you will meet a member of the riding office, who will check you in and provide you a helmet for your ride. From here, walk back outside into the sunshine and meet your trusty horse. Using a step, climb onto your horse under the direction of your guide, and learn some basic horseback riding techniques. Follow your guide along the tranquil Bow River and past the historic Cave and Basin Hot springs - the original birthplace of Banff National Park. This area is home to wildlife in amongst the thick marshes and grassy meadows. Enjoy unspoiled views of the magnificent Rocky Mountains along the way. After 1 hour of scenic horseback riding, return to the stables, where you'll disembark and say goodbye to your horse with some farewell pats.

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Banff National Park: Big Canoe River Explorer Tour

4. Banff National Park: Big Canoe River Explorer Tour

Enjoy the serenity of the Bow River on a family-friendly canoe tour. Get ready to be amazed by extraordinary views of Banff National Park and the Canadian Rockies around you. This sightseeing tour is perfect for the whole family and doesn't require any previous experience. Meet at the Banff Canoe Club, just a 5-minute walk from downtown Banff. As you journey upstream, your expert guide will entertain you with stories of the past, history of canoeing, and interesting local facts. Admire the scenery around you, while learning how to paddle as a team. After 1 and a half hours of fun, enjoy a complimentary, refreshing lemonade on the shore.

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Kicking Horse River: Half-Day Intro to Whitewater Rafting

5. Kicking Horse River: Half-Day Intro to Whitewater Rafting

Get a perfect introduction to whitewater rafting on Class 1-3 rapids starting in Yoho National Park of Canada. Experience moderately-challenging rapids and the stunning scenery of the Canadian Rockies.  Check-in at the lodge conveniently located on TransCanada Highway #1. Be fitted with top-of-the-line gear and transported to the starting point of the rafting experience. Receive a thorough safety briefing before setting off on the river. Embark on a 90-minute downstream journey starting with the "Alarm Clock" rapid, which is sure to wake everyone up. In between the exciting rapids, take in the beautiful scenery surrounding you on all sides. Learn about the wildlife in the area, how the Kicking Horse River got its name, and how the river gets its beautiful blue color. Finish the rafting trip at "Hopi's Hole", which serves as an exciting grande finale. After the rafting, be taken back to the lodge to relax and warm up in the heated changing-rooms. Once back in warm, dry clothes, enjoy freshly baked goodies and seasonal fruit along with a selection of hot and cold beverages. Browse through the gift shop to pick up a souvenir t-shirt or photos from your experience.

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Banff National Park: Hop-On-Hop-Off Bus Day-Pass

6. Banff National Park: Hop-On-Hop-Off Bus Day-Pass

Maximize your time in Banff National Park with this Hop-On-Hop-Off Pass and see all the main sights at your own pace. The stops include Johnston Canyon, Moraine Lake, Lake Louise, and the Lake Louise Gondola (admission is not included). There are 3 departures from Banff, so you can start early and see everything, or sleep in and enjoy a tour along the famous Bow Valley Parkway to Moraine Lake before your return to Banff. • Stop 1 - Banff - The tour departs at 07:45 AM, 9:30 AM, and 12:15 PM daily • Stop 2 - Johnston Canyon - Hop off here to hike up to the beautiful Upper and Lower Falls or even go all the way up to the famous Ink Pots • Stop 3 - Lake Louise Gondola - Soar by gondola or chairlift to the most stunning views on the Lake Louise Gondola • Stop 4 & Stop 5 - Lake Louise - Make sure to hop-off here to enjoy Lake Louise and all that it has to offer. Check out Lake Agnes Teahouse and the breathtaking Plain of Six Glaciers • Stop 6 - Moraine Lake - the most stunning lake in the Rockies. Experience the absolutely breathtaking Valley of the Ten Peaks that surround the lake. Return to Banff as early as 1:45 PM or enjoy all the stops and come back to the town at 6 PM. On your way back to Banff open the windows and watch for wildlife along the famous Bow Valley Parkway. Grizzly bears, black bears, elk, bighorn sheep have all been spotted here. Your bus will stop for photos at any sighting. Enjoy your tour on the original yellow school bus style with a professional driver and a tour guide. All the buses all guaranteed to be 5 years old or newer. Guides on board each bus will help you plan your day on a 1 on 1 basis and give you a personalized itinerary that matches what you want to do. They also have extensive knowledge of nearly everything you would ever want to know about Banff and can help you with hiking suggestions, or even just great places to eat.

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Kicking Horse River: 5-Hour Whitewater Rafting Trip with BBQ

7. Kicking Horse River: 5-Hour Whitewater Rafting Trip with BBQ

Set off on the famous Kicking Horse River for a genuine Rocky Mountain whitewater rafting experience. The 5-hour trip (2.5-hours on the river) combines all the best the river has to offer: bouncy and splashy waves, calm and scenic float sections, and big whitewater rapids.  Check in at the local partner's base, conveniently located on TransCanada Highway #1, and change into your top-of-the-line gear, which is provided. Transfer then to the rafting start point and, following a thorough safety briefing, it will be time to get on the river. Begin on the upper, more gentle, scenic section of the Yoho National Park. For approximately 1-hour, enjoy splashing through the waves as you warm up for the more intense sections downstream. The second half of the trip, taking approximately 1.5 hours, is made up of 14 sets of rapids ranging from Class 2 to Class 4+. Expect to get soaked during this section! After rafting, transfer back to the base to enjoy the warmth of the DayLodge and heated change rooms. Once back in warm, dry clothes, enjoy a delicious gourmet BBQ lunch.

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From Banff: Snowshoeing Tour in Kootenay National Park

8. From Banff: Snowshoeing Tour in Kootenay National Park

Once your guide has picked you up from the meeting point, take a scenic drive in a modern minibus along Highway 93 South from Banff into the neighboring Kootenay National Park. Upon arrival at the Paint Pots trailhead, your guide will show you how to put on snowshoes over your winter boots and give you an introduction to the art of snowshoeing. Then, start down the easy 3-kilometer (1.86-mile) winding forest trail, perfect for beginners as it covers a mainly flat terrain with minimal elevation gain. Cross a bridge over the frozen Vermilion River to the fascinating Paint Pots, mineral deposits once used by First Nations people for rock painting. As you explore this cultural treasure within the Kootenay National Park, learn about the history of the fur trade with your guide. Throughout your snowshoeing tour, hear stories of Banff’s indigenous people, explorers, and fur traders who lived in and traveled through the Rockies. After the crisp winter walk, enjoy hot chocolate and a uniquely Canadian treat: hot maple taffy poured into snow to make a sweet frozen dessert. What's more, try a crazy carpet slide down the hill while the maple taffy is being made - kids and adults alike love this part of the tour! After your snowshoeing adventure, your guide will transport you back to Banff and drop you at your hotel.

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Banff: Private Horse-Drawn Sleigh Ride for Four

9. Banff: Private Horse-Drawn Sleigh Ride for Four

Enjoy a 40-minute sleigh ride on your private four-seat sleigh through the mountain meadows, situated close to the town of Banff. Meet at the Warner Stables in Banff to begin your sleigh ride. Admire the stunning views of the majestic Mount Rundle and beautiful Mount Norquay as your guide provides information on the surrounding area.  Cuddle up under a blanket with your family, friends, or loved ones in a private sleigh ride for four. If you are lucky, you may even spot some local wildlife including deer or elk. Finish off the trip by warming up by a crackling fire and roasting some marshmallows from your s'mores kit and snack on some tasty treats.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Banff

Want to discover all there is to do in Banff? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Banff

Fascinating activity! The horses were well trained and the view was amazing. The staffs were very patient and nice with our group, and also I want to thank to this one staff who taught me so well with riding horse. I had a really good time with my horse, Tucker, too!

This was our first time horseback riding so we were a bit nervous but the team was so good at explaining everything and the horses were extremely well-trained!!!! It was soooo easy to navigate them. We absolutely enjoyed ourselves.

What a great ride! Staff were friendly, fun and knowledgeable! Only disappointed because it was cloudy and difficult to see the mountains but weather control is obviously not their fault AT ALL

It was awesome. The wild water crew throw on a great river tour, with lots of laughs and good stories. I would recommend it to anyone passing through Golden

Very good family activity. We really enjoyed it. Liam was a great tour guide.