What To Do In Banff In October
See Lake Louise in Fall with Discover Banff Tours

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

With cooling temperatures comes the changing of the seasons and the colours of the leaves. October is the best month to see the fall colours in Banff National Park, with snow-capped mountains as the perfect backdrop.

1. See Banff’s fall colours

As fall sets in, it’s the perfect time to see the leaves change colour in Banff. The morning Discover Banff & Its Wildlife Tour takes you to some of the most scenic viewpoints in Banff – and we might even see some wildlife along the way!

Sightsee Bow Falls in fall with Discover Banff Tours
Photo Credit: Banff & Lake Louise Tourism / Paul Zizka Photography

2. Visit Lake Louise before it freezes

Want to see Lake Louise before it freezes for the winter? The water usually begins to ice over in October before it freezes in November, so October is the perfect time to visit this famous lake. Take a scenic drive along the Bow Valley Parkway and then enjoy an hour of free time to wander the famous shoreline on the Discover Lake Louise Fall Tour (please note that Moraine Lake closes in early October but can be visited until this time on the Discover Lake Louise and Moraine Lake Louise Tour).

Lake Louise Instagram Photo

3. Take a Halloween ghost tour

With Halloween approaching, discover Banff’s ghostly past on a guided evening stroll through the paranormal with stories of haunted landmarks, unsolved mysteries and terrifying encounters at hotels.

Hear ghostly stories about Banff's past on a ghost walk
Photo Credit: Canmore Theatre Productions

The best Banff activities in October

Take a Banff ghost tour led by an interpretive guide

Banff Ghost Walk

Spend a spook-tacular evening unearthing the ghastly ghosts, ghouls and mysterious events lurking in the shadows of Banff’s streets. Take
7:00pm
1 Hour 40 minutes
Horseback ride through the Spray River

Horseback Ride - Spray River 1 Hr

Our guides will lead you past roaring Bow Falls where you will cross the tranquil Spray River, followed by a
Throughout the day
1 Hour
Summer views from the Banff Gondola
Most Popular

Banff Sightseeing Gondola

Soar to the summit of Sulphur Mountain in a modern gondola cabin for breathtaking 360 degree views, 5 minutes from
Throughout the day
Open Ticket
Take a guided horseback ride along the Bow River with Discover Banff Tours in the Canadian Rockies
Most Popular

Horseback Ride - Bow River 1 Hr

A 1 hour horseback ride along the Bow River and past the natural sulphur hot springs flowing from the Cave &
Throughout the day
1 Hour
Discover Banff and Its Wildlife view from Surprise Corner
Family Fun

Discover Banff & Its Wildlife

Uncover the secrets of a historic mountain haven with a local guide leading the way as you gaze at stunning
8:30am
3 Hours

Columbia Icefields Parkway Tour

Travel along the world famous Icefields Parkway Highway and see, touch and even taste an ancient glacier on this thrilling
8:00am
11 Hours
See turquoise Moraine Lake and the Valley of Ten Peaks on the Lake Louise and Moraine Lake Tour with Discover Banff Tours
Most Popular

Lake Louise & Moraine Lake

See two of the world's most beautiful lakes including iconic Lake Louise - famous for its jewel-like water nestled between
8:00am, 1:00pm
4.25 Hours

4. Take a fall horseback ride

Take a one-hour horseback ride along the Bow River (or a one-hour ride crossing through the Spray River in early October) as you look out to the fall colours along the Bow River and snow-capped mountains. Banff trail rides run daily until mid October and are perfect for beginners, and you might even see some elk during their rutting season.

Horseback ride through the Spray River

5. Package Deal: Banff Lake Cruise + Banff Gondola

Combine two of Banff’s most popular attractions in a combo package deal! Relax on a 1 hour sightseeing cruise on Banff’s largest lake, Lake Minnewanka, and then soar to the summit of Sulphur Mountain on the Banff Gondola. The lake cruise operates until mid October (weather permitting), and the Banff Gondola operates year round.

Lake Minnewanka Banff Lake Cruise
Photo Credit: Mike Seehagel / Pursuit Banff Jasper Collection

6. Hike with a local guide

As fall colours linger into October, there’s still plenty of hiking trails waiting to be explored. Some of our favourite guided hikes include the Plain of Six Glaciers at Lake Louise and Larch Valley at Moraine Lake. Please note that guided hikes operate until mid October, but private hikes are available on request at any time of year.

Plain of Six Glaciers Hike at Lake Louise with Discover Banff Tours

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Is October a good time to visit Banff?

October is the best month to see fall colours in Banff National Park, with snow-capped mountains as the perfect backdrop.

Is Banff open in October?

Banff National Park is open year round, and October is a great time to take enjoy the fall colours and cooler weather with less crowds.

When does Lake Louise freeze?

Lake Louise usually begins to ice over in October before it freezes in November, and thaws in June each year. The best months to see the turquoise waters is July and August.

What can I do for Halloween in Banff?

Banff Ghost Walks are the perfect Halloween activity, with stories of haunted landmarks, unsolved mysteries and terrifying encounters at hotels.

Can you hike in Banff in October?

As fall colours linger into October, there’s still plenty of hiking trails to be explored including the Plain of Six Glaciers at Lake Louise and Larch Valley at Moraine Lake.