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While Numa Falls is a beautiful place to start an excursion through the Canadian Rockies, its best attribute is its location. Basically located on the border of the British Columbia and Alberta territories, the waterfall is within an hour of three national parks and some of the most scenic and well-known nature spots in Canada. Numa Falls, Canada is worth a visit as it can be the jumping off point to some of the best bucket list-worthy destinations in the Great White North.
Numa Falls is a gorgeous waterfall in the midst of the Canadian Rockies. The waterfall itself is a cascade that flows as a part of the Vermilion River, which is in the thick of Kootenay National Park. Numa Falls is an ever-popular stop for adventurers traveling this region because it is easily found and accessed. The Banff-Windermere Highway 93, a main artery for the region, rolls adjacent to the Kootenay River, which later becomes the Vermilion. A quick hike from the parking lot, the falls, while not extremely large, present a prime opportunity for a few photos as the river flows through a picturesque forested canyon. Those seeking a longer adventure can cross the river near the falls and continue on a hiking trail that navigates into the park.
Numa Falls’ Access to Kootenay National Park
Since it is located in Kootenay National Park, Numa Falls is close to all the attractions the park has to offer. Below are some of our favorites.
Only accessible by the Floe Lake Trail, this pristine spot is not visited often as it is usually only tackled by experienced hikers. The trailhead, which leaves from the side of Highway 93, is a mountainous hike of over six and a half miles. It may seem intimidating but it’s suitable for beginner backpackers. Those who do take on the journey are treated to a lake with wooded shores on one side and sharp barren peaks on the other.
Radium Hot Springs
Located at the southern entrance to Kootenay, Radium Hot Springs are some of the most popular natural springs in Canada. Surrounded by breathtaking forestry, the mineral water is soothing and warm. Unlike many hot springs, which are often sulfuric, Radium Hot Springs is odorless.
The natural border of Kootenay and Banff, as well as British Columbia and Alberta, the Continental Divide is the main hydrological divider of the Americas. Mostly mountainous from Alaska down to Chile, some of the top attractive portions are located in Kootenay. Many of the peaks that make up the spine are above the tree line but spectacular to look at.
Numa Falls’ Access to Banff National Park
Home of the most photographed natural features in Canada, Banff is a “cannot miss destination” and, much of it is only a mere 45 minutes from Numa Falls.
Lake Louise (and Lake Louise Ski Resort)
The first of the stunning glacial lakes in Banff, Lake Louise is a perfect place to combine outdoor recreation with luxury accommodations. On one end of the lake sits the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, one of the most breathtaking hotels in the world with panoramic views of the surrounding lake and mountains. In the summer, canoe rentals allow outdoors folk to access the lake for closer views, while in the winter, when the lake freezes, ice skaters are a common sight. Also in winter, the Lake Louise Ski Resort opens up and allows skiers and boarders to shred some of the most striking terrains in the world, making it arguably one of the best ski resorts in Canada.
A quick drive from Lake Louise, Moraine Lake is just as stunning but perhaps a touch wilder without the presence of a resort. Known as one of the most colorful places on Earth, from the turquoise waters to the evergreen trees and the permanent snow decorating the mountainous shoreline, Moraine doesn’t take a bad picture. Again, this spot is likely the most photographed piece of Mother Nature in Canada, and many may know it as a background picture for both Windows 7 and 10 operating systems.
Named for an early, famed trail guide and trapper, Peyto Lake is perhaps the least well known of the three Banff lakes on this list. Because of that, many vistas are not as sought-after here and tourist traffic is sometimes slightly more sporadic. For the best possible view, tourists should take the Icefields Parkway and locate Bow Summit. Bow Summit grants visitors sweeping views of the lake and mountains above it.
Numa Falls’ Access to Yoho National Park
The final piece of the national park triangle within an hour’s drive of our beloved Numa Falls is Yoho National Park.
Emerald Lake, and Natural Bridge which forms on the connecting Kicking Horse River, is a year-round home to nature worth admiring in Yoho. The lake is open to watersport enthusiasts in the summer, and in the winter, the trails are still accessible with snowshoes. While Emerald Lake is largely untouched there are two quality restaurants on its shores.
Only open from June to October, unless a hiker is avalanche-certified, Takakkaw Falls are some of the highest in Canada. A layered cascade, in total the waterfalls are 1,260 feet tall, with the longest portion falling unobstructed for 830 feet. Hiking trails can get visitors close enough to the falls to feel the mist on their faces.
Other Nearby Places to Numa Falls
The biggest city near to Numa Falls, Calgary, once thought of as just a collection of Canadian cowboys, has recently been making a name for itself because of its attractive downtown along a river, upbeat nightlife (including some honky tonks), and booming economy.
Glacier National Park of Canada
About two and a half hours into British Columbia from Numa Falls, Glacier National Park of Canada is a playground for alpine trekkers and climbers. Mount Sir Donald is a favorite amongst visitors as its visage reminds many people of the Matterhorn.
Jasper National Park
While it is technically connected through the same protected wilderness as Yoho and Banff national parks, Jasper is just a bit too far north to have made the same list of Numa Falls’ neighbors. Jasper is, however, the largest national park in the Canadian Rockies and is a favorite amongst backpackers and wildlife enthusiasts.