Province/Territory: Alberta

Walk and boat-cruise a glacier-carved valley

  • 500 square kilometres with 45 natural habitats
  • 60 species of wolf, coyote, cougar, bear, elk, and deer
  • 50 retreating glaciers

Hike the "crown of the continent": a UNESCO World Heritage Site where two-mile-high mountains meet meadows of wildflowers. Face the sun on an aspen-lined path worn by spring elk and Kainai legend. Gaze into a glass-clear lake and listen to its stories of glacier-ground valleys and billion-year-old peaks. Count glacier lilies, and watch for the moonwort fern – unique to this park. Stand next to a waist-high, 200-year-old tree. Meet new friends aboard the wooden-hulled M.V. International and cruise Upper Waterton Lake back to the Prince of Wales Hotel National Historic Site – your home in the Rockies. Compare mountain sheep sightings with other hotel guests over Afternoon Tea, a high-altitude ritual complete with porcelain cups, whole-leaf tea, and oven-warm pastries.

Why you should visit
  1. Hike along a glacial lake in a UNESCO World Heritage Site biosphere designated for its superlative scenery, extensive wildlife and rare plants.
  2. Easily count more than 30 types of wildflowers.
  3. Stand in a narrow mountain divide where three rivers each flow in a different direction.
  4. Search for vivid argillite rock made bright red by iron and air.
  5. View majestic waterfalls and watch for eagles aboard the family-run M.V. International shoreline boat cruise.
  6. Relax over chocolate fondue in a quaint, timber-framed mountain lodge.
Visitor information
When to go
  • The park hosts year-round events.
  • Spring is the best time for wildflowers.
  • In the summer, join the weekly International Peace Park guided hikes.
  • Late August and September beat the crowds and be rewarded with fall colours, wildlife viewing, and birdwatching.
  • In early or late winter, watch for Chinooks-sudden, warming winds that seem to melt snow in front of your eyes.
Need to know
Getting Here