Where to Stay: Fairmont Château Lake Louise, a stunningly situated wilderness retreat. Rooms start at $415; 111 Lake Louise Dr.; 866-540-4413.
When to Go: Late July, when wildflower season begins and the lake warms.
Top Tables: Lake Louise Railway Station & Restaurant, where you can dine in a refurbished Canadian Pacific Railway dining car (dinner, from $47; 200 Sentinel Rd.; 403-522-2600). In downtown Banff, 50 minutes from Lake Louise, at Maple Leaf (dinner, from $50; 137 Banff Ave.; 403-760-7680), you can indulge in a two- or three-tier tower of fresh seafood: mussels, scallops, squid, oysters, prawns, salmon. The Bison, also in the heart of Banff, offers regional dishes like Springbank bison strip and B.C. steelhead trout (dinner, from $55; 211 Bear St.; 403-762-5550).
Other Activities: Explore local wildlife habitats, kayak on Lake Louise or hike to neighboring Lake Agnes; the track includes a charming teahouse cabin where hikers can relax and take in the grand vista while enjoying snacks.
Getting There: Banff is about 90 miles west from Calgary International Airport, which is serviced by many major airlines.