15 Amazing Photography Spots in the Canadian Rockies

Visiting The Canadian Rocky Mountains has been on my bucket list for a very long time.  After an opportunity presented itself to spend one year in this beautiful country on a Working Holiday Visa I didn’t have to think twice.

Today, after spending over a year in the Rockies photographing the most spectacular mountain landscapes I’ve ever seen, I put together a list of the places every landscape photographer should visit at least once in their lifetime.

Some locations require days to trek to and others are easily accessible by the side of the road however, all of them is a worthwhile cause, to wake up before the sun rises and before the crowds start to accumulate.

 To make the most of your valuable time here, consider following my two-week road trip around the Canadian Rockies designed for photography lovers.

15 of my favorite photography spots in the Canadian Rocky Mountains

1. Spirit Island, Maligne lake

Maligne Lake Jasper National Park 2

There are loads of boat cruises heading down Maligne Lake every day however if you want to photograph Spirit Island at sunrise or sunset you will have to plan a multiday kayaking or canoeing excursion. I stayed at Fisherman’s Bay Campground and canoed to Spirit Island through the dark to get this shot at sunrise.

2. Vermillion Lakes

Vermillion Lakes, Banff National Park, Canada
Photo credit: Jack Bolshaw

Hands down the most beloved location for photographers visiting the Rockies. These easily accessible lakes, just a few minutes away from downtown Banff, attract hundreds of people each day no matter the season.

There are certainly many other photography spots in Banff National Park that offer more solitude but if you’re there early for sunrise then you should have easy enough space. The Vermillion Lakes should be high on everyone’s bucket list. 

3. Two Jack Lake

Two Jack Lack 20

Two Jack Lake is another signature location around Banff where you can photograph the reflections of Mount Rundle. There’s a multitude of possible compositions here, make sure you’ve got plenty of space on your memory card.

The Minnewanka Lake Loop is also a famous place for being home to a multitude of wildlife in the Canadian Rockies

4. Lake Louise

Little Beehive 1

Accessible both in the summer and winter months Lake Louise is an absolute must. Renting a canoe for a paddle on the lake or completing one of the many hikes around Lake Louise in Banff National Park is the way to go if you want to see beyond the shore. 

If you are visiting in the winter you can rent a pair of ice skates and go skating on the lake with the majestic mountain backdrop. 

5. Lake Edith, Annette, and Beauvert.


3 glacially-fed little lakes, not too far away from the townsite of Jasper offer stunning reflections of all the nearby mountains. Most prominently Pyramid Mountain and Mount Edith Cavell.

They are one of the best photography spots in Jasper National Park and require such little effort to get to, you’d be insane to miss them out if you’re in the vicinity.

6. Moraine Lake

Moraine Lake 2

If you google Canadian Rockies, Banff National Park, or anything related to traveling in Canada you will always get a picture of this lake in the search results. Moraine Lake is by far the most iconic location on this list. It’s not only famed for its photogenic attributes it’s also the trailhead for many world-class hikes in Banff National Park.

However, with fame come the negative aspects. Due to avalanche risk in the winter months, visiting Lake Moraine is only possible during the summer season from mid-May until the beginning of October. During the peak summer months (July & August) the word crowded is an understatement. 

7. Peyto Lake

Peyto Lake 1

A lake or a Wolf? If you look closely you can spot its two ears and a muzzle! Peyto Lake is another must-visit when traveling down the Icefields Parkway between Lake Louise and Jasper.

From the parking lot, it is only a 20-minute hike to the viewing platform and this is the view you’ll be rewarded with. 

8. Bow Lake

Bow Lake 4

The Icefields Parkway – Canada’s most scenic road is full of photo-worthy spots, but to me, Bow Lake stands out more than the others. There is a big parking lot around 100 meters from the highway where you can take a break from driving and go explore the area. 

9. Sunwapta Falls

Sunwapta falls 5

A diamond ring shaped by nature. These captivating waterfalls are located just a few hundred meters off the Icefields Parkway, 30 minutes south of Jasper. They are a highlight stop on my road trip itinerary from Vancouver to Calgary across the Rockies.

Be very careful if you are exploring the area. The rocks can be very slippery and treacherous. I learned that once the hard way. 

10. Emerald Lake

Emerald Lake Winter 6

A real gem with a corresponding name. Located just 10 minutes away from Field in Yoho National Park, on main highway number 1.

I braved the -30 degree cold morning to capture this winter scene and I spotted my first moose from far away! The famous lodge built right by the lakeshore is easily accessible by car in both the summer and winter months. 

11. The Three Sisters

The three sisters turn into three sets of twins when photographing the reflections in the ponds and rivers that surround the town of Canmore, which lies just outside the boundaries of Banff National Park.

This signature mountain range is visible almost from any spot in town, in fact, I am looking at it as I am writing this right through the window in my living room! This capture, from Policeman Creek, is one of many picture-perfect locations to capture Canmore’s beauty

12. Mount Assiniboine

Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park 25

One of the most iconic scenes from the Canadian Rockies, Mount Assiniboine also referred to as “The Matterhorn of the Rockies” has been an inspiration for many movie directors, painters and of course photographers!

I have created an awesome photography and outdoor guide to visiting Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park which includes the best spots for capturing the beauty of this place.   

13. Berg Lake

Berg Lake Trail 20

This view will take some time and effort to get to, but it’s well worth it. The glacier-fed waters of Berg Lake situated at the foot of Mount Robson are one of my favorite sights I have photographed so far.

The famous Berg Lake trail will lead you to the shore of the lake from where you can explore the surrounding area. 

14. Mount Robson

Berg Lake Trail 4

Particularly fine during the turning of the autumn foliage this scene can be photographed right near the visitor centre of Mount Robson Provincial Park. This visitor center marks the start of the Berg Lake Trail, one of my favourite backcountry hikes in the Canadian Rockies.

Mount Robson at 3954 metres is the highest peak in the Canadian Rocky Mountains and it certainly shows when you stand in its presence. 

15. Castle Mountain

Castle Mountain in Banff National Park, Canada
photo credit: Jack Bolshaw

Another easy roadside stop. It’s impossible to miss it when driving from Banff to Lake Louise. This distinct peak stands proudly on the right side around halfway between the two towns. Castle Mountain faces West making it a perfect sunset location. 

There is a wildlife gate right next to the river where you can photograph the reflections of the mountain. Make sure to keep it closed if you plan on visiting the area.

Travel resources I recommend for your Canadian holiday

Motorhome Republic – A great search engine for renting a camper van.
Discover Cars – If camping is not for you, but you value independence from public transport, rent a small car!
Booking.com – Are you looking for accommodation in Canmore, Banff, or Lake Louise? This is my go-to booking engine
Wildlife Guide – Tips on when and where to spot wildlife in the Canadian Rockies
Parks Canada – up-to-date information about campsites, trails & any wildlife warnings.

Wikicamps app – it will help to navigate you to your campsite, popular visitor spots, public washrooms, etc. 


Hi! I am the photographer and creator of www.inafarawayland.com. I come from Poland, but I've been living, travelling and working around the globe since I turned 18. A few years ago, during one of my trips to Scotland, I bought my first DSLR and my adventure with photography began. When I am not stuck to my computer editing photos, you can find me hiking somewhere in the mountains.


    • Hi Nancy. Thanks for visiting. The photo is taken from a very popular lookout which is a 20-minute walk from the carpark/bus stops and very easy to find. Please bear in mind that starting this summer season it is only possible visiting Moraine lake by public transport and it is highly advisable to book your tickets in advance. I hope that helps. Let me know if you have more questions!

  1. Great photos, planing to go to Alberta in mid November. Would that be a good time to catch the lakes half frozen and not totally covered in snow ?

    • Hi Patrik. Thanks for your feedback. It can be a hit or miss, to be honest, but I wouldn’t count on them being frozen yet. Maybe some higher elevation lakes like Elbow Lake or Lake Agnes will start to freeze but not the big ones near towns.

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