The plan was to drive to Banff and take the Icefields Parkway to Jasper but was raining here and raining there. Looks pretty stormy over the mountains so I saved the glaciers for another trip.
But it was far too early to head home! And here I am in Banff. Banff National Park is always a super place for photographic excursions, rain or shine, with its waterfalls, wildlife and panoramic vistas as far as you can see.
But one of the things that’s always prevented me from spending more time in Banff National Park is the over crowded townsite – what used to be a quaint ski village is now kitschy and over done, with insanely long line-ups everywhere, and RVs jammed into every conceivable empty space. I used to think that unless you were camping in the back country, the only options for lodging were in the town of Banff.
On this trip I found out I was wrong. A random phone call to the first web page that came up when I typed "dog friendly hotels in Banff" turned up what ended up being the total highlight of my trip.
The Juniper Hotel is the most amazing experience for anyone who wants to be "away from it all" while staying in Banff – the park. Situated on a plateau just off the Trans Canada, overlooking the town but about a mile from it, is surrounded by wilderness, with hiking trails right out the back door, stunning views from your room, amazing retro-cool architecture and interior design (completely renovated in 2004, keeping the original 1953 style but adding a modern flair), the best food I have had in any restaurant on any road trip EVER, plus a whole lot more.
I’m now planning a trip exclusively to Banff for an immersive photo tour in the park, now that I have such a great place to stay – great value for what you get, great staff, dog-friendly and boutique atmosphere.
Talk about a room with a view!