10 Kid-Friendly Things to do in Jasper National Park with Kids

Located just a few hours of driving from Calgary or Edmonton, Jasper is one of those hidden-away towns that comes with just as much to explore as Banff – without the crowds. Flying in? Make the drive to view wildlife and lookout points on the way in. Regardless, plan for a long weekend at least. There’s plenty to explore. Here are a few of the things you can experience in Jasper, with kids:

Take a Wildlife Tour
Winter or summer, there’s a wildlife tour for every season in Jasper. You can venture out with a local touring company, or grab your camera and go it alone. You don’t have to go very far, as you’ll often find elk grazing in town. Take it out a bit further towards Maligne Lake and you might see bears, wolves, moose or mountain goats, depending on the season.

Take a Dip in the Miette Hot Springs
If you’ve spent the day hiking, or exploring, the hot springs are a great way to relax at the end of the day. Admission is inexpensive, and you can spend as much time as you want in the hot springs on the side of a mountain. Forgot your swimsuit? That’s not a problem, because you can rent a suit at the springs. When you’re finished, take the trail up to the ‘Source of the Springs’. For easy access, you can camp at Pocahontas Campground, where you’ll find an incredible waterfall just outside of the campground entrance.

Step into an Abandoned Swimming Pool
If you’re in the mood to explore, take the trail before the hot springs up to the ‘Source of the Springs’. There, you’ll find the source of the hot springs, right from the ground, and an abandoned area where the hot springs were located years ago. The abandoned building is neat, and the paved trail is stroller friendly the entire way up and you’ll be up to where the action is in under fifteen minutes.

Look Down at Maligne Canyon
Start at the fifth bridge and follow the trail up to gaze down at Maligne Canyon. This kid friendly hike has a bit of an incline, and should be attempted with ice cleats during the winter season – but is less than ninety minutes out and back, with fantastic views of the canyon. The impressive viewpoints along the way are worth the walk. Follow the signs to Maligne Lake, park – and look for bridge five for the most scenic route to the canyon.

Walk through a Frozen Canyon
Explore Maligne Canyon in the winter for a completely different viewpoint, and the ability to walk in the canyon itself. Your first time out, you might want to explore the canyon with a tour guide, as you’re walking on a frozen river. Once you’ve hiked it a couple of times, you can venture down there on your own – but be sure to bring ice cleats for the entire family. If you do attempt to go it on your own, make sure there’s a ratio of one adult to child, for the safest trip and stop at the entrance of the canyon.

Ride the Sky Tram
The Sky Tram is one of the best ways to see Jasper, with breathtaking views of the national park. It’s a bit of a splurge at $44 for adults and $22 for children, but kids under five are free – making it a bit more affordable for families with young children. You feel like you’re at the top of the world once you’ve reached your destination, and we love the fact that knowledgeable guides are there to answer any questions the kids have, along the way.

Take a Bus on the Columbia Ice Fields
There’s something magical about being on the ice fields during the summer, and something exciting about taking that big-fun bus with huge wheels to conquer the ice. You could drive out and skip the bus, but the tour and the ride is something that our kids still talk about, two years later!

Explore Spirit Island on Maligne Lake
Spirit Island is one of the most popular places on Jasper National Park postcards. The island can be reached by boat tour, or paddling out yourself. The boat tour is recommended – unless you’re an experienced paddler or you are travelling with someone with experience. If you’re bringing the kids, spring for the boat tour.

Want to explore Jasper for the weekend, but you’re not sure where to stay? Skip the hotels and stay in one of the Rustic Heritage cabins at Bear Hill Lodge. The two bedroom accommodations are the perfect combination of modern and rustic, perfect for a cozy weekend in the mountains at any season.

10 Kid-Friendly Things to do in Jasper National Park with Kids

Comments

  1. I love Jasper. I have to admit the shopping is my favorite but I think a trip to Spirit Island would be a great family activity for the summer.

  2. I have never been to Jasper, but it is definitely on my “bucket list”! Would love to see everything on your list but especially the Columbia Ice Fields and the Miette Hot Springs.

  3. Jasper is just amazing!

  4. robin masshole mommy says

    It sounds like there is a ton to do there. I would love to spend some time there with my family.

  5. Catherine S says

    This looks like a great place to visit. I would love to visit the hot springs and ride the sky tram.

  6. This looks like such a cool place to spend the day. The next time we drive up north this place would be a great pit stop.

  7. Oh wow! I would LOVE to visit Jasper! And now that I know what to do there….maybe it’s time for a vacation! Thank you!

  8. Claudia Krusch says

    These all sound like fun things to do with the kids. I would love to check out the Maligne Canyon.

  9. That’s an awesome list of things to do! Every time we’ve been in the area, we’ve had a tight deadline (RV travels.) I need to file this away for later.

  10. I’ve never heard of this place but it looks like a great place to visit. I’ll have to add this to my travel bucket list.

  11. These all sound like great things to do. Now, I am going to have to try and find a way to visit here. I think my family would enjoy it.

  12. this is the first time i have heard of jasper park. sounds awesome. i would love to go with my family. i know we would have an amazing time.

  13. I have never been to Jasper. I would love to go one day. These are some awesome ideas for travel with kids. That fits our family travel mandate here too. One day soon I will do Alberta with my family. Not sure which season, but I will remember some of these ideas for sure.

  14. Jasper is amazing! We have visited several times and are back this summer with our 6 year old for her first trip. We always camp-it’s absolutely beautiful and the wildlife is amazing. Great blog-thanks!

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