Jasper Destination Guide
Attention outdoor adventure enthusiasts: you’ve found your home away from home in Jasper. The wild and rugged landscape of the Canadian Rocky Mountains provides the perfect all-year-round playground for sporty types who enjoy hiking, mountain biking and golfing – not to mention boating in summer and shredding up the powdery white ski slopes in winter.
Jasper town itself is charming, unpretentious and laid-back with hearty food, cosy hotels and an authentic mountain village vibe. It’s everything you want to come home to after a long day taking in the spectacular wilderness of Jasper National Park.
Picture yourself floating gently in 40-degree waters with a stunning backdrop of snow-capped mountains and alpine forest – enticing, isn’t it? Make your way to Miette Hot Springs and experience true indulgence, Canadian Rockies-style. Nestled in Fiddle River Valley, these visually spectacular hot springs are the warmest in the entire Rocky Mountain region, and the perfect spot to begin your holiday.
For a view that’ll knock your socks off, a visit to Jasper Skytram is the ticket. Canada’s longest and highest aerial tramway will take you 2,2277 metres above sea level as you rise up Whistlers Mountain, granting magnificent panoramic views over Jasper National Park in the process. Pack a picnic for the landing and find a scenic spot to while away the afternoon, or enjoy lunch at the on-site Treeline Restaurant – the view from the dining room is unbelievable.
If you’re visiting Jasper in winter just for the snow, there are plenty of skiing and snowboarding locations to test out your skills. Head 20 minutes from the town centre to the popular Marmot Basin and enjoy 3,000 vertical feet of impressive powder. During summertime Jasper delivers an abundance of outdoor adventures to satisfy even the biggest adrenalin junkie, including white-water rafting, horseriding, mountain biking, hiking, rock climbing, fishing, golfing and magnificent wildlife viewing.
The hotel restaurants dish up excellent fare when you want a convenient bite after a long day, but venturing into town will also reward you with a diverse range of options. Get set for casual cafés, Mediterranean eateries, pizzerias and classic North American steakhouses and grills serving up big portions for hearty appetites.
Local specialties to sample include lamb, salmon, elk, pheasant and Alberta beef. After dark is a fairly subdued affair, but let’s face it – you don’t come to Jasper for all-night partying. After the day’s adventures, rest your feet and enjoy a drink in one of the cosy bars or lounges around town.
Where to Stay
Quaint wooden cabins and lodges add to the authentic Canadian Rockies feel when staying in Jasper, and there are plenty of mid-range options around town to suit every taste. Jasper is also home to a gorgeous chalet-style resort and some lovely up-market hotels that range in atmosphere from historic to contemporary, all placed conveniently in or around the downtown area. The township is compact and easily walkable, so wherever you stay in the downtown area you won’t be far from restaurants, bars and shops.
If you want to take a break from the great outdoors and enjoy a bit of retail therapy, Jasper has you covered. Head to Connaught Drive and Patricia Street where you’ll find brand name outdoor gear, souvenirs, fashion and jewellery. Jasper also has some unique galleries around town where you can take home Native American and Inuit arts and crafts. Beauvert Promenade has an array of great gift shops and luxury boutiques to browse before leaving town.
Jasper Like a Local
The population of Jasper is small, and those who live here do so for one reason – they’re lovers of the great outdoors through and through. While every local has their own special hiking spot, a few favourites include Mount Edith Cavell, Signal Mountain and Pyramid Mountain. Other local activities to get amongst while in town include fishing, mountain biking, golfing and horseriding.