We were able to spend some time just wandering through Banff and Canmore due to the rain in the mountains. I’m not sure that I would want to live there, it seems quite expensive and you would have to go into Calgary quite often to shop, but it would be nice to visit more often. It’s got that quintessential mountain town feeling- like it’s you and nature and a restaurant or two. They really embrace their history, it’s nice to see!
As we were leaving the town of Banff, I was able to quickly snap some shots of the mountains on the way out. Although there was still a bit of fog, you could still see most of the mountains. I just kept telling myself, it is a much more impressive view than the wheat fields so common on the prairies.
We drove into Canmore for my dad and brother to check out a ski/snowboard shop sale. While they perused sporting goods, I obviously stopped in at the bookshop. It was small and cute, and they really pump that “welcoming bookshop feeling”. I had numerous books from the library with me, so I had to exert all of my mental strength to not buy more books.
They had some really cool classic t-shirts and sweatshirts, including a Nancy Drew sweatshirt. (It was $65, so unfortunately it was not a go 😦 ) Even though the shop was fairly small, they had a fantastic variety of books, including a Harry Potter display. I love when stores display fun quotes like this:
There was also a gorgeous used bookshop/tea room connected to the regular bookshop. While I love antique bookshops, they are often well out of my price range. This was regular ol’ used bookshop, with affordable but gorgeous books, and a lovely assortment of teas and cakes.
This was outside a store that looked quite interesting but I didn’t have time to go into: Valhalla. I’m not the warrior type but maybe it would make me feel tough!
The Canmore Hotel is old-timey and fun, and I hope that next time I can actually go into the hotel and maybe have lunch or dinner. (Not sure that I’m going to stay there- my next stay is reserved for the Fairmont Lake Louise.) It capitalises on the history of the mining industry, and I thoroughly enjoy the touches throughout.
We then quickly stopped at the remnants of Bankhead. Bankhead was an offshoot of the Canadian Pacific Railway, and was one of the most prominent towns. The miners there led hard lives, but had quite a few amenities than you would think.
I love the train peeking out there! I would love to have seen what the town actually looked like at the peak of it’s life- perhaps I will go on the hunt for some archival pictures.
Next, onto Banff! These are some of my favourite shots from the town. Many of the corners on the main strip have these metal plates handily letting you know what cross-street you are on. There wasn’t a moose one that I found, so I had to go with the Caribou.
This should be called “Loki”, not “Wolf”, but I’ll let it pass… for now.
I didn’t go in, but this church looks quite interesting! The steeple almost looks like it is made from a glacier. If only that was possible (I’m sure that someone, somewhere has figured out how keep ice frozen without melting. I need to find them.) There is an info centre just to the right for anyone who needs it!
We finished off the evening at a wonderful pub, Toque. If you want quintessentially Canadian, this is where you want to go! The food was great, and you will be educated about Canadian-isms while you eat 🙂
Where in Canada have you been?