What To Do In Banff In November
Hike on catwalks at Johnston Canyon on a guided icewalk with Discover Banff Tours

Looking for the best things to see and do in Banff in November?

November is one of the quietest times of the year to experience the Canadian Rockies, and the best time if you want to avoid the crowds. Plus, if you’re looking for a unique winter experience, the popular icewalk tour to Johnston Canyon starts up again as the thundering falls begin to freeze.

1. See frozen falls at Johnston Canyon

Our most popular winter hiking tour starts in mid November! Take an icewalk tour to Johnston Canyon and see the frozen lower falls (where you can squeeze through a natural cave for a close up look if you like) and continue on to the awe-inducing upper icefalls from the upper deck where you’ll warm up with a hot chocolate. This tour is recognised as a Canadian Signature Experience – a collection of once-in-a-lifetime travel experiences found only in Canada.

See the frozen upper falls on the Johnston Canyon Icewalk with Discover Banff Tours

2. See Lake Louise start to freeze

Winter is approaching and there has never been a better time to see the rare sight of thawed, blue lakes with a blanket of snow around them. This narrow window is arguably the most beautiful time to see the world-famous Lake Louise. Not only will you have the place to yourself, but you’ll get to see it in a state not many ever do. Save yourself the parking hassles on a guided tour from Banff with a scenic drive along the Bow Valley Parkway on the Discover Lake Louise Fall Tour. You might even see ice start to form on this famous lake!

See Lake Louise surrounded by snow on the fall tour with Discover Banff Tours
Photo Credit: Mital Patel @mitalpatelphoto

3. Explore a wild, undeveloped cave

Venture underground into Rat’s Nest Cave – a wild, undeveloped cave under Grotto Mountain; near Banff and Canmore. These guided natural history tours take you climbing, crawling and even squeezing through the depths of the cave.

See the Grand Gallery in Rats Nest Cave on a Canmore Cave Tour in the Canadian Rockies
Photo Credit: Canmore Cave Tours

The best Banff activities in November

See Lake Louise in Fall with Discover Banff Tours

Lake Louise Fall Tour

See iconic Lake Louise, famous for its jewel-like water nestled between rugged peaks. This stunning lake looks too beautiful to
4.25 Hours

Icefields Helicopter Flights

See the Canadian Rockies on spectacular Icefields heli sightseeing flights with glaciers, icefalls, waterfalls, alpine lakes and 11,200 foot peaks.
Throughout the day
20 Mins, 30 Mins, 55 Mins

Private Banff Heli Sightseeing

Located on the south west border of Banff National Park, Marvel Pass has long been a favourite spot for that
Throughout the day
55 Mins
Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary Sanctuary Walk in Cochrane

Wolfdog Sanctuary - Self Guided

This self-guided interpretive walk allows visitors to see the sanctuary and view and photograph the various packs of wolfdogs at your
Throughout the day
1 Hour
See wolfdogs on the intro tour at the Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary

Wolfdog Sanctuary - Intro

Want to know more about wolfdogs? Learn all about the sanctuary during a 30 minute introductory talk inside a wolfdog
10:45am, 1:15pm, 2:15pm, 3:45pm, 12:15pm
30 Mins
The interactive tour allows you to feed wolfdogs at the Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary near Banff in the Canadian Rockies
Limited Space

Wolfdog Sanctuary - Interactive

Come enjoy an up-close and intimate look at wolves and wolfdogs on this semi-private guided sanctuary tour with plenty of photo
10:30am, 12:00pm, 2:00pm, 3:30pm
45 Mins
Johnston Canyon Icewalk in Banffwith Discover Banff Tours
Most Popular

Johnston Canyon Icewalk®

Water cascades into this narrow canyon in the heat of summer, but in the winter the thundering falls freeze solid
8:30am, 1:30pm
4 Hours

Canmore Caves Explorer Tour

An introduction to the amazing world of caves, spending two hours climbing, crawling and squeezing through the infamous Rat's Nest
9:30am, 11:00am, 12:30pm
4.5 Hours

Canmore Caves Adventure Tour

Spend four hours underground as you climb, crawl, wiggle and slide through the water-worn passages of the infamous Rat's Nest
8:45am, 10:15am, 11:45am
6 Hours
Most Popular

Banff Helicopter Flights

A once in a lifetime experience to fly over mountain peaks, alpine meadows, pristine lakes and to the "Matterhorn of
Throughout the day
25 Mins, 35 Mins, 45 Mins

4. See the Canadian Rockies by helicopter

The Canadian Rockies are spectacular at any time of year – take to the skies on a sightseeing helicopter flight near Banff to see the turquoise rivers and lakes start to freeze, surrounded by snowcapped mountain peaks. For that truly romantic occasion, our top pick is the Private Marvel Pass Flight, which includes a 20 minute stopover at Marvel Pass at 7,200 feet overlooking Aurora Lake and surrounded by towering peaks.

Alpine Heli Tour flying over Lake Gloria
Photo Credit: Alpine Heli

5. See Banff’s best viewpoints

As the weather starts to cool, there’s no better time to see ice forming on the lakes and mountain tops covered in snow. Join a small group morning tour of Banff (where we often spot elk, deer and bighorn sheep!) to some of Banff’s best viewpoints including the Surprise Corner viewpoint of the ‘Castle in the Rockies’, Lake Minnewanka and the Hoodoos Viewpoint. For an extra special experience we recommend the Discover Banff Tour with Gondola, which includes your Banff Gondola ticket and dropoff at your hotel after the tour.

Hoodoods viewpoint on the winter Discover Banff Tour

6. Visit a wolfdog sanctuary

Located just an hour from Banff between Banff and Calgary, the Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary is a not-for-profit organisation that rehabilitates and regimes displaced wolf dogs. The sanctuary offers a variety tours to see wolf dogs up close and and learn more about these amazing animals. The interactive tour offers a semi-private guided sanctuary experience but book ahead, this is their most popular and sells out weeks in advance.

Meet wolfdogs on the interactive tour at the Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary

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Is there snow in Banff in November?

Skiing kicks off in Banff in November, and you may catch the occasional snowfall but it usually doesn’t stick around until December when the temperatures dip lower.

What is there to do in Banff in November?

November is one of the quietest times to experience the Canadian Rockies, and a great time for seeing frozen falls at Johnston Canyon, helicopter flights, caving and wolfdog sanctuary tours.

Is Lake Louise frozen in November?

Lake Louise typically freezes over in mid November, and it’s a beautiful time to see the icy waters surrounded by snow.

Is Johnston Canyon open in winter?

Johnston Canyon is open year round, and winter is a great time to visit the frozen falls. Parking is limited, so plan a backup option or join a guided tour.

Are there helicopter tours in Banff?

The closest helicopter flights depart from Canmore, 20 minutes from Banff, and take you above Banff National Park to see glaciers, forests and mountain peaks.

Where can I see wolves in Banff?

Located an hour from Banff in Cochrane, Alberta, the Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary rescues displaced wolfdogs. Visitors can enjoy interpretive talks at the sanctuary and view wolfdogs up close.