Less trafficked than Banff or Jasper, but equally astounding, this UNESCO World Heritage Site boasts some of the best hikes and views in the southern Canadian Rockies.
For the adventurous, the Crypt Lake hike delivers thrills and chills with its cliff traverse and glacial waters. Those who prefer to ‘go deeper’ can scuba dive in Emerald Bay, exploring the wreckage of ‘Gertie’, an old paddle wheeler that used to ply the waters here.
If paved roads are more your speed, hit up Pat’s for an e-bike rental, and explore the townsite, Red Rock Canyon or Cameron Lakes in that mountain-fresh air, au naturel.
A local’s advice
On the way to Waterton via Cardston, take a break at Mountain View’s ‘Barn Store’ for a homestyle breakfast sandwich. In Waterton, get caffeinated at the Windflower Corner Coffee before your big hike, dive or ride. When you’re done for the day, grab a dog at Wieners of Waterton: the place where all your dreams of hot-dog toppings come true.
The trip at a glance
Duration: 1-hour drive, one-way
Expected cost: $7.80 for an adult, $19.60 for a family/car