Visiting Lake Louise? Here are my best tips so you don’t get stuck in crowds or driving around endlessly finding parking!
This post on visiting Lake Louise, Canada was written in partnership with Travel Alberta.
Lake Louise, Canada is best known for its pristine, turquoise waters filling a lake fed by glaciers! It’s surrounded with gorgeous mountains and is a sight to see at anytime of the year.
However, visiting Lake Louise isn’t always easy to do because of the number of tourists that flock to this natural wonder and the chateau on the lake, the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise (which if you’re wondering where to stay in Lake Louise, this 5-star hotel is a must).
Here are my best tips for visiting Lake Louise, Canada based on my own trip there as well as Calgarian residents who’ve visited this gorgeous lake.
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Visiting Lake Louise from Calgary
Getting from Calgary to Lake Louise is a relatively easy drive. After getting out of the city, you’re basically on one long highway for an hour and a half to two hours.
We rented a car with all-wheel drive from Budget in downtown Calgary. If you’re driving in the winter, make sure your car has all-wheel drive or snow tires.
If you don’t want to drive, you can still go on a day trip there! This group tour goes to Lake Louise, Moraine Lake and Emerald Lake.
You Might Like: What to Do in Calgary
Best Time to Visit Lake Louise
July and August are arguably the best times to visit Lake Louise, Canada because of the weather. The temperature is at a high of 69.8°F/21°C and low of 41°F/ 5°C.
However, July and August are the busiest times of the year. Parking is extremely hard to find, and overall, the lake is quite crowded. Head to the Parking section for parking tips during this time of year.
According to an employee I chatted with at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, I went at the best time to visit Lake Louise, which was in the second week of October.
In her opinion, October is the best time to visit because the trees and mountains are dusted with snow, making the scenery even more beautiful, and there aren’t as many visitors, making it a more of a serene experience!
October is a tricky time to visit Lake Louise though because you won’t know what type of weather you’ll get; basically a little or a lot of snow. Therefore, perhaps the end of September would be the best after the crowds thin out a bit but it’s not as cold yet!
Parking at Lake Louise, Canada
Parking at Lake Louise in the summertime can be rough. Unless you are the first ones there, you’ll have to circle the lot again and again until you are told to go down to the shopping plaza where there are shuttles to bring you to the lake. Then once you’re at the shopping plaza waiting for the shuttle to get to the lake, you may have to wait for 90 minutes!
Pro Tip: If you’re going in the summertime, park at the shopping plaza where the Lake Louise Visitor Centre is and call a taxi to bring you to the lake, or you can stay at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise where you can park in their parking garage for $30 CAD/day.
Parking at Lake Louise in October wasn’t bad at all. When I went on October 15, 2019 at 12:00PM, the parking lot was full, but as soon as we pulled in, another car was pulling out. I noticed other cars waited at most 5-10 minutes for other cars to leave.
We left Lake Louise around 4:00PM and there were plenty of parking spots then so if you don’t want to wait at all, you can come in October later in the day.
Lake Louise Accommodation
The best place to stay at Lake Louise is hands down the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. This chateau is right on the lake, and if you book your room with a view, you can wake up to these magnificent blue hues!
Nonetheless, this 5-star Lake Louise accommodation may not be in everyone’s budget. But don’t worry! There are other places to stay in Lake Louise, Canada. Here are a few:
- Post Hotel and Spa, a 4-star hotel with a spa and an indoor Roman-styled pool
- Lake Louise Inn, a 3-star hotel with a heated indoor pool and hot tub
- HI Lake Louise Alpine Centre, a hostel with a common room and sauna (great for solo travelers)
See if these hotels are available during your stay.
Things to Do in Lake Louise
There are so many things to do in Lake Louise beside take pictures of it! You can:
- rent a canoe from the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise
- snowshoe at nighttime under a starry sky
- hop on the gondola to get a breathtaking view of the area
- learn about local mountaineering history and see a beautiful viewpoint of Lake Louise and Lake Moraine on a guided tour
Thanks for making it all the way down to the end of the post about visiting Lake Louise. I hope it helps you plan your trip.
Furthermore, I’d love to connect. Come say hi to me my Instagram @sarchetrit, especially if you found any part of this post to be helpful.
Till then, thanks for stopping by, and have a great day!