Updated Juky 2, 2023
Going to Banff is a fun experience for the whole family but sometimes it can be hard occupying the kids all of the time. This is especially true if you’re not familiar with what there is to see and do. We’ve got 10 kid-approved ideas on how to keep busy with the kids while visiting Banff!
Kid-approved activities to do with kids when visiting Banff
This mix of cheap and free things to do in Banff should give you a wide range of activities in the National Park that your kids will love and talk about for years to come!
1. Kid-Friendly Hikes
Go on a kid-friendly hike at Tunnel Mountain or Fenland Trail.
2. Picnic at Cascades of Time Garden
This ever-expanding garden is a sight to see all summer long, located just across the Bow River from downtown behind the Banff National Park Administration Building.
3. Visit Downtown Banff
Take a walk on Banff Avenue and stop off at the iconic Banff Sweet Shoppe for some of your favourite (and even hard to find) treats.
4. Go on a Pony Ride
Kids 3-7yrs can get up close and learn the basics of horseback riding on a 15-minute Pony Lead. The cost is $20, and worth the splurge.
5. Hike to a Waterfall
Visit Marble Canyon (just outside of Banff National Park in Kootenay National Park) or Johnston Canyon.
6. Try Bowling
Check out High Rollers Banff and bowl a couple of games! There are 6 lanes, one with bumpers, a full menu, billiards and arcade games.
7. Biking at the Banff Pump Track
Bring your bikes and check out the Banff Bike Park at Sundance Road and Cave Ave! There are elements for all skill levels! (The pump track is being renovated in 2023 and may not be available this summer.)
6. Enjoy the Hot Springs
Take some time to soak in the hot mineral water at Banff Upper Hot Springs.
7. Visit Cave and Basin National Historic Site
Don’t want to go in the water? Visit the site that started the entire parks system in Canada at Cave and Basin National Historic Site.
8. Explore a Ghost Town
Go for a hike around the Bankhead ghost town on Lake Minewanka Road.
9. Summit a Mountain (without hiking)
Go for a ride on the Banff Gondola and explore the top of a mountain or have lunch in their restaurant, Sky Bistro (FYI, the food is delicious).
10. Hit a playground
Burn off some energy as you explore and play at some of Banff’s Best Playgrounds.
11. Let the Kids Take Photos
Visit spots like Bow Falls and Surprise Corner that are popular photo stops (with not much else to do) and let the kids take the photos.
12. Go Swimming
Visit Banff’s only Water Park at Douglas Fir Resort (for registered guests only at this time). Other options include checking out the pool at Sally Borden Fitness and Recreation or one of the mountain lakes.
13. Take a Boat Tour
Take a boat tour on Lake Minnewanka and learn about the history, geology, animals, and more.
Are there other activities that we didn’t include in this list that you like to do when you are visiting Banff with the family? Join the conversation on Instagram or Facebook and tell us what are some of the kid-approved activities that you do with your family.