To enjoy Lake Louise in one day start not at the famous lake that gives the village its name but at another strikingly beautiful body of water: Moraine Lake. Located 8.7 miles (14 kilometers) from Lake Louise Village, Moraine Lake can get so busy during the day that Parks Canada closes the Moraine Lake Road, so you’ll want to get there early, ahead of the crowds. Take a leisurely stroll along the lakeshore, then rent a canoe to go for a paddle.
When you leave Moraine Lake, Lake Louise should be your next stop. Take your lakeside photos, then if you’re up to a long hike, follow the 6.6-mile (10.6-kilometer) round-trip Plain of Six Glaciers Trail that takes you to the far side of Lake Louise and between several glacier-topped peaks. Have lunch and a pot of tea at the remote Plain of Six Glaciers Teahouse. Alternatively, it’s a shorter hike up to the Lake Agnes Teahouse, another scenic setting for a sandwich or a snack.
After your hike, change clothes and have a cocktail in the Lakeside Lounge at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, because you can’t have enough opportunities to admire the lake. Then enjoy a leisurely dinner nearby at the Mount Fairview Dining Room at Deer Lodge for modern mountain fare, from house-made charcuterie to the triple chocolate mousse. You’ve earned it.
Excerpted from the First Edition of Moon Vancouver and Canadian Rockies Road Trip.