Calgary to the Canadian Rockies

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Written by Patrick J. Smith posted on Monday, October 11th, 2010

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Calgary, Alberta is the closest big city to Banff, Canmore and Jasper, and is serviced by an international airport, making it a transportation hub for the Canadian Rockies. Once you’ve gotten to Calgary, there’s several transportation options to get you to the mountains.

Transfer Shuttles

Banff, Jasper and the rest of the Canadian Rockies are all serviced well by transfers from the Calgary airport. There are a couple different options to choose from for your transfer. One is the Banff Airporter shuttle which has multiple departures every day, and takes you directly to your lodging. Jasper Vacations have long provided shuttle service between Calgary and Banff, with a reputation for very professional staff. The company also does tailor-made sightseeing tours, taking the worry out of transportation for your whole trip.

It is always a good idea to book in advance as the beauty of Banff calls to everyone around the world. The drive to Banff from Calgary is about 90 minutes, or just 20 if you’re staying in Canmore.

Car rentals in Calgary

If you plan on seeing a lot of different places on your Canadian Rockies vacation, and want the freedom to make plans on the fly, renting a vehicle is probably the choice for you. Calgary, despite being in a somewhat remote part of the world, is a big metropolitan city, with a world class international airport, which provides a number of top-notch options for your car rental needs.

Driving Directions

To get out to Canmore or Banff, you’ll take the TransCanada Highway West. The drive, even to Banff, is fairly short, at only about on and half hours.

Jasper is a bit more of a drive. You’ll start off on the TransCanada Highway, as if you were going to Banff, then head up the Icefields Highway. The drive is about 5 hours total, but it’s beautiful the whole way.

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