Where to wed in and around Banff and Canmore
by Paul Peters
If there’s any difficulty presented by getting married in Banff or Canmore, or anywhere in the Canadian Rockies for that matter, it’s narrowing down a choice of location. You can pretty much get married anywhere you want to inside of Banff National Park, and Canmore has no shortage of beautiful sites either.
So where to start?
Here at CanadianRockies.net we’ve spoken to some of our local wedding experts and gotten their opinions on some of the best locations in the Banff and Canmore area.
John Stewart, a wedding photographer out of Banff, sets the scene for just how difficult it can be to choose your Canadian Rockies wedding spot.
“There’s literally hundreds of ideal places,” he says. “There is not just one perfect location. It all depends on what you want.”
Stewart notes that, “Anyone can get married in the Canadian Rockies on any budget,” and that, “If you are organized, any location in the Rockies can be ideal.”
That said, we’ve still got a few recommendations for you.
Local wedding commissioner Patricia Compton says that she often favors Canmore as a place to get married.
“It has several locations with incredible views,” says Compton.
Quarry Lake, just a few minutes drive out of Canmore, is one of her favorites.
“It has a 360 degree view,” she says. “It’s beautiful any direction you look, and it’s an easy spot to get to for both the young and old.”
For larger groups, she recommends the Tunnel Mountain Meadow in the town of Banff.
For a beautiful, yet easily accessible place, Compton advises taking the Sulfur Mountain Goldola right from the town of Banff.
“It takes you right to the top, and it’s easy to get to,” she says.
The Gondola ride takes only eight minutes, offering amazing views of the Canadian Rockies all the way up. It lets you off at a height of 2,281m (7,486 ft), providing inexpensive and amazing backdrops of the surrounding mountains for your wedding.
Lauren Laming, a wedding planner, loves the ice castle that is built on Lake Louise every winter after it is frozen over.
“It’s an absolutely magical place to have a wedding,” she says.
The chef at the Chateau Lake Louise builds the castle out of solid ice every year out on the lake, providing a dream-like setting among the natural beauty surrounding Lake Louise.
For a summer wedding, Laming mentioned Two Jack Lake, a short drive from Banff in the park.
“It’s beautiful, with lots of wilderness as a back drop,” she says, noting that the site also offers the chance to see elk and bighorn sheep.
Laming also recommended Quarry Lake, both because of its beauty, and because it can accommodate much larger weddings than most locations inside Banff National Park.
The Juniper Hotel & Bistro in Banff is also a trendy place to do a mid-sized wedding. In Banff, the Buffalo Mountain Lodge built a special building called the wapiti that can be used as a venue. It’s a big room with an open timber ceiling and a huge stone fireplace.
Another suggestion for a venue is the Emerald Lake Lodge and the Num-Ti-Ja Lodge on Bow Lake as places a little of the beaten path. A little more rustic, this place is built for the nature lovers, the people that want to get away a little bit.
Want more options for your Canadian Rockies wedding? Bookmark this page, as we’ll continue to update it with more information on wedding locations.