Have you heard of SnowDays in Banff Canada?

Travel to Canada - What to Expect

Have you heard of SnowDays in Banff Canada?

In Canada, winter ushers in a whole new reason to celebrate with fresh winter activities and one-of-a-kind events like SnowDays in Banff and Lake Louise. Set in the heart of the Canadian Rockies, a place where winter means more, Banff SnowDays is a celebration of Canadian arts, culture, and sports all bundled into 16 days of fun that’s fit for the whole family.   

This year, SnowDays in Banff and Lake Louise will take place January 19 – February 4, 2024. Enjoy family-friendly daytime and evening activations throughout the Town of Banff. If you’re still thinking about skiing in Banff and Lake Louise this winter, Banff SnowDays is a perfect time of year to plan your holiday. From a kids’ Playzone in downtown Banff to night tubing at Mt. Norquay. Here are all the things you can expect to find at SnowDays in Banff and how to celebrate winter Canadian style!   

How to spend SnowDays in Banff  

Follow a trail of snow sculptures  

One of the staple events during Banff SnowDays is the snow sculptures that can be found throughout downtown Banff. If you arrive during the first few days of the festival, you will be able to watch talented snow sculpting artists carve enormous blocks of snow, with the finest detail, right before your eyes. It takes anywhere from 3-5 days for a team of sculptors to finish one snow sculpture. Once finished, each snow sculpture will be illuminated with technicolour lights for visitors from around the world to marvel at and enjoy. Most of the snow sculptures are carved on Bear Street, but they will also be found near Banff Ave. and in front of the Whyte Museum, on Lynx Street.   

TIP: Before you go, grab a hot chocolate from Wildflour Bakery, on Bear Street, to keep you warm as you walk through town. Or, if you’re looking for a tasty apres, cuddle up in a cozy booth at the Bear Street Tavern and order one of their signature pizzas.   

When: January 19 – February 4

Where: Multiple Locations

More information  

Family looking at snow sculpture, mountains in the background.
Grab a hot chocolate and explore the magical snow sculptures all around the Town of Banff, January 19 – February 4. | Photo by Travel Alberta / Josh Segeleski

Bring kids to the SnowDays Playzone  

Banff and Lake Louise is Canada’s winter playground, and Banff SnowDays is no exception. From January 19 – February 4, Wednesdays through Sundays, the Banff High School Field will be transformed into the ultimate winter kids’ play zone. With tobogganing, sleds, winter games, and “mountains” that look and feel just like the mighty SkiBig3 – Banff Sunshine, Lake Louise Ski Resort, and Mt. Norquay. Come celebrate the joy of winter and play like the kid (or kid at heart). In the specially designed winter fun area will include ice slides, a sledding hill, a fat tire bike track, a cross-country ski track, and so much more.   

TIP: If you’re searching for a kid-friendly meal after exploring the SnowDays Play Zone, check out Coyotes Southwestern Grill – they’ve got a great kids’ menu!   

When: January 19 – February 4

Time: Wednesday – Sunday

Where: Banff High School Field  

More information

Riders tubing, hands in the air, while enjoying the SnowDays Festival in Banff
The SnowDays Kids Playzone will be open from Weds-Sun, January 19 – February 4 | Photo by Travel Alberta / Josh Segelski

Watch skijoring in Banff  

Have you heard of skijoring in Banff? It’s okay if you haven’t. This sport is so niche and so fascinating most people are mesmerized the first time they see it live! Skijoring is a winter sport in which a person is pulled by a horse, dog, or another animal (like a reindeer). On January 20, in Banff and Lake Louise, athletes from Skijor Canada will descend on Banff Ave. for a breathtaking exhibition of horse-riding and ski stunts. There will be two events hosted on January 20, one show at 11:00am and the next at 2:30pm. It’s recommended you arrive early to get a spot in the front row!  

TIP: If you’re looking for a place to dine like a true cowboy after this spur-rattling good time, visit Chuck’s Steakhouse for a slice of Alberta AAA beef and a cool glass of Park Distillery Rye 

When: January 20, 2023 – 2 events at 11:00am and 2:30pm  

Where: Banff Avenue – 100 Block  

More information

Spectators line the Main Street in Banff, watching skijoring at the SnowDays Festival in Banff
Skijouring will take place on Banff Ave. January 28. It’s a wild mix of ski and cowboy culture! | Photo by Travel Alberta / Josh Segeleski

More ways to celebrate Banff Snow Days  

Experience the charm of Ice Magic

Step into the enchanting winter wonderland at the iconic Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise as Ice Magic returns in 2024. Watch the magical transformation as the sun begins to set at Lake Louise and the ice sculptures come to life through the illumination of lights. Over the select weekends on Jan 26-28 and Feb 2-4, immerse yourself in the talent of world-class ice carvers competing in the highly anticipated Ice Magic Competition. Access to the event requires tickets, which will be available for purchase starting December 12, 2023. Don’t miss the opportunity to witness the beauty of this enchanting winter wonderland at Lake Louise.

TIP: Lake Louise Ski Resort Guests can receive a 50% discount on Ice Magic tickets. Staying in Banff or Lake Louise? Guests can receive complimentary tickets. Please contact your hotel for further details, tickets must be reserved in advance.

Visitors admiring an ice sculpture at the Ice Magic Festival at Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise in Banff National Park
Experience the enchanting winter wonderland at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise as the sculptures at Ice Magic come to life | Photo by Travel Alberta / Noel Hendrickson

Take a wildlife snowshoe tour at Lake Louise Ski Resort  

Snowdays in Banff and Lake Louise is all about celebrating winter and the unique weather and wildlife that it brings. To get close to nature, take a guided Wildlife Snowshoe Tour at Lake Louise Ski Resort. On this adventure, an enthusiastic local guide will help you escape into the serene, snow-covered forests around the ski area and teach you how animals and plants deal with the long, hard winters in the Canadian Rockies. This tour is family-friendly – it’s perfect for both kids and nature lovers. Snowshoe rentals will be provided and winter clothing rentals will also be available at the resort rental shop. This tour lasts approximately 1.5 hours and no previous snowshoe experience is necessary.   

When: 10:00am, 12:00pm, 2:00pm daily  

Where: Meet at Lodge of Ten Peaks, Lake Lousie Ski Resort  

Book here  

banff-lake-louise-ski-resort-guided-snowshoe-tour
Learn about the wildlife and plants of the Canadian Rockies on a guided snowshoe tour at Lake Louise Ski Resort. | Photo by Philip Foresy

Sign up your Tiny Tiger at Banff Sunshine  

The joy of winter can start at any age. At Banff Sunshine, their Tiny Tigers Ski +Play program is designed to get little ones outdoors and on the snow all winter long. If you have a 3–6-year-old, you can sign them up for a half-day or full-day program that mixes indoor and outdoor daycare activities with Tiny Tiger ski lessons. Lunch and rentals may be added on and first-timers or “never-ever” skiers are welcome! Banff Sunshine’s friendly childcare staff will make sure your little one has a blast and learn valuable ski skills while you enjoy the slopes.   

When: Daily 8:30am-4:30pm (Full-day), 8:30am-12:30pm (Morning Half-day), 12:30pm-4:30pm (Afternoon Half-day)  

Where: Tiny Tigers Daycare, Banff Sunshine Upper Village  

Book here  

skibig3-sunshine-tiny-tiger-kids-ski-lesson
The Banff Sunshine Tiny Tigers Ski + Play program. Aperfect mix of indoor/outdoor daycare activities and ski lessons with certified instructors for ages 3-6 years. | Photo by Banff Sunshine

Go night tubing at Mt. Norquay  

The fun doesn’t stop just because the sun goes down. At Mt. Norquay, on Friday and Saturday nights, the real fun begins when night tubing kicks off from 5:00pm-7:30pm. Mt. Norquay is home to Alberta’s longest and fastest tubing lanes, a thrilling kid-friendly way to hit the snow! At night, the spinning and whirling fast winter air becomes even more exhilarating with up to 8 tubing lanes illuminated by park lights and the glow of the Town of Banff below. Little ones must be 4 years old and at least 1m (42”) tall to tube. We recommend bundling up in lots of warm winter gear – like snow pants, snow boots, and a warm jacket. Goggles and a neck tube (or Buff) are a good idea too!  

When: Friday & Saturday nights, 5:00pm-7:30pm  

Where: Mt. Norquay Ski Resort  

Book tickets   

Explore the summit of Sulphur Mountain with Nightrise

Embark on a magical journey with Nightrise and experience the summit of Sulphur Mountain in a whole new light. This experience pays tribute to the magic of sacred mountains, which have been a gathering spot for many years, including the Stoney Nakoda People (Îyârhe Îethka). You can immerse yourself in four unique multi-sensory art installations and explore your connection to the mountaintop. Your adventure begins at sunset as you ascend 2,000 feet into the air. Enjoy the breathtaking mountain views while listening to narration, music, and original soundscapes in the gondola. Step onto the summit where the magic awaits and end your evening with a memorable mountaintop meal.

When: November 18, 2023 – March 31, 2024

Where: Banff Gondola, Sulphur Mountain

Book tickets   

An ariel view of people enjoying the light show at Pursuit's Nightrise Experience in Banff National Park
Explore four multi-sensory art installations and discover your own connection to the mountaintop with Nightrise | Photo by Travel Alberta / Youn Park

 

Want to visit Snow Days in Banff this winter?  

If you’re thinking about a ski trip to Canada this winter, that includes Banff SnowDays, take a look a this ultimate 6-day Banff Winter Itinereary. When you’re ready, our friendly reservations team will be happy to help you book anytime. Give them a call at 1-844-754-2443 or go online to access some exceptional Ski & Stay Package deals. Plus, check out more unique winter activities and experiences you can expect to find in Banff and Lake Louise!   

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Calendar of Events

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Nightrise at the Banff Gondola

SnowDays Festival

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3 events,

3 events,

- Recurring

Ice Magic Event

3 events,

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Dopestyle

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2 events,

Legends of The Village

3 events,

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Heavy Metal Rail Jam

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Norquay: Lifts of Love

1 event,

2 events,

Norquay: Magic on the Mountain

1 event,

2 events,

1 event,

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Backyard Rail Jam

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