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Parking at Moraine Lake (Info & Tips)

Banff, Canada

by Coco Tran On September 10, 2023

3 days in banff

If you haven’t heard of Parks Canada’s recent ban on personal vehicles at Moraine Lake, I’m sorry to say it is true! Parking on Moraine Lake is no longer allowed for personal vehicles.

So, how can you see Moraine Lake now? Not to worry—It’s not the end of visiting Lake Moraine, In this article, I’ll share 7 easy and hassle-free ways to visit Lake Moraine so you can have the best experience Moraine Lake.

can you park at moraine lake ?

moraine lake parking is now no longer available! Parks Canada’s recent decision to not allow personal vehicles on Moraine Lake Rd to reduce congestion and disturbances to wildlife has made it challenging for visitors eager to see the beautiful lake.

Don’t worry– you can still visit Moraine Lake and park ther . But now you have to make some adjustments if you want to visit and park at moraine lake! Read on below to find out my tips and how to get lake moraine parking.

How To Get lake moraine parking

parking at moraine lake moraine lake parking

Moraine Lake is popular during sunrise, and photographers (myself included) flock earlier and earlier to the parking lot in the wee hours of the morning and wait in their cars until the sun rises.

This has become an issue that Parks Canada addressed with the banning of personal vehicles starting in 2023. But, there are ways to still get parking here. So here I share 7 ways to get parking at lake moraine and other alternatives to consider if you don’t have a car.

1. For moraine lake parking Book Accommodations in Moraine Lake

The Best way to guarantee parking is to book a room at the lodge located right in the park. It’s the only accommodation in the park so book as early and in advance as you can. Definitely more than 6 months out! You can park your vehicle here for free and you will be steps away from Lake Moraine and have the best views from your room! You get complimentary canoeing if you stay here A value of $140 and priority service.

lake moraine parking by staying at this lodge
lake moraine lodge


The only accommodation within walking distance of lake moraine. Staying here will take the hassle of planning. Stay here to enjoy the convenience of being right next to the lake.

rating :

3 star rating
3 star rating
3 star rating

3 star lodge

key features:

  • located in the park
  • best view of lake
  • walking distance to the lake
  • Restaurant on property

2. Book a Private Lake Moraine Sunrise Tour

The easiest and most hassle-free way to guarantee you’ll see Lake Moraine for sunrise is to book a private tour. Pick-up and drop is included as well as a driver who will drop you off right at the entrance. Enter like a VIP without having to wait in line. You decide how long you’ll stay and who is going with you! Up to 4 guests are allowed.

3. Book a Lake Moraine Sunrise Group Tour

If you’re looking for a more cost-effective option, consider taking a shared tour. This tour offers transportation and a guide to the lake without the hassle of parking and taking the shuttle. It’s a great option if you’re going with your significant other and don’t want to pay for a private tour.

4. If You’re Staying in Canmore or Calgary

Staying in Canmore or Calgary? It’s a further drive, so leave your car at home and Book a Private Tour, for up to 12 guests with a tailored itinerary to see all the highlights of Banff including Lake Moraine. Because it’s a private tour, it will be catered to what you want to see and do! You’ll have a knowledgeable guide and driver with you every step of the way.

5. Take the Sunrise Shuttle to Lake Moraine

There’s only one shuttle company that offers a sunrise shuttle to lake moraine. They take you early enough for sunrise you’ll arrive by 4:30 am and the tickets are an affordable $29 RT . You have to book asap as they sell out!

6. moraine lake parking : Camp at Lake Moraine

For a budget-friendly option, consider camping in Banff National Park. There are several campgrounds in the area, including the Lake Louise Campground, which is located within walking distance of the lake. You have to reserve these in advance and they fill up quickly.

7. Take The Shuttle By Parks Canada

Parks Canada offers a very affordable shuttle service and a bus (Roam Public Transit) to take you to Lake Moraine. Although you won’t make it for sunrise, the shuttles start at 6:30 and are pretty much sold out for the season. You can park your car at Lake Louise at the Park and Ride (see map below). If you’re staying in Banff or the surrounding area, take advantage of shuttle services to get to Lake Moraine. These services are convenient and affordable. Note: if you park at the Lake Louise lakeshore, you cannot hop on the connector shuttle to moraine lake. You will need to show your roundtrip ticket with reservations booked in advance.

TIP: The shuttle service is only available May to Oct and requires advance reservation. Check their website for more information

how to get parking at moraine lake
from parks Canada website

8. Book a Banff Hop on Hop Off Bus

The modern school bus-style shuttle goes between the town of Banff, Johnston Canyon, Lake Louise, Moraine Lake, Samson Mall, and the Lake Louise gondola. You choose where to visit and when. Again, they don’t go early enough to catch the sunrise.

Coco Tran — Aesthetic Travel Blog By Film Photographer Coco Tran

What is the best time of year to visit Moraine Lake?

During the summer months, typically from mid-June to mid-September, Moraine Lake is at its busiest and most crowded. However, this is also when the weather is warmest and the lake is at its bluest. Summer is a great time to go hiking or canoe on the lake.

If you prefer cooler weather and fewer crowds, consider visiting Moraine Lake in the fall. The foliage around the lake turns stunning shades of orange and gold, and the weather is cooler but still pleasant. September and early October are some of the best times to visit for fall foliage!

Winter is also a magical time to visit Moraine Lake, as the snow-covered peaks and frozen lake create a winter wonderland. However, access to the lake may be limited due to snow and ice, so be sure to check for road closures and other restrictions before planning your visit.

Why is Moraine Lake so popular?

Moraine Lake is one of Canada’s most popular destinations, and for good reason. This stunning lake is surrounded by towering mountains, crystal-clear waters, and an abundance of natural beauty that’s sure to take your breath away!

One of the reasons that Moraine Lake is so popular is its sheer beauty. The lake’s turquoise waters are unlike anything you’ve ever seen, and the surrounding mountains create a picture-perfect backdrop that’s perfect for photography and sightseeing.

Additionally, the lake offers a wide range of activities and attractions to suit all tastes and interests. From hiking and boating to wildlife viewing and scenic drives, there’s something for everyone at Moraine Lake.

Finally, the lake’s accessibility is another reason for its popularity. While personal vehicles are not permitted to park at the lake during peak travel times, there are still plenty of ways to reach the lake and enjoy its beauty. Whether you take the shuttle, a taxi, or a guided tour, it’s easy to experience all that Moraine Lake has to offer.

Which is better Lake Louise or Lake Moraine?

Ah, the age-old question: which is better, Lake Louise or Lake Moraine? It’s a bit like asking which is better, chocolate or vanilla. The answer, of course, is both!

In all seriousness, both Lake Louise and Lake Moraine are absolutely stunning destinations that offer their own unique charms. Lake Louise is known for its iconic turquoise waters, soaring mountains, and the luxurious Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. Visitors can enjoy hiking, canoeing, and skiing, among other activities, and take in the breathtaking scenery that surrounds the lake.

Meanwhile, Moraine Lake is known for its crystal-clear waters, towering peaks, and stunning hiking trails. Visitors can enjoy hiking, boating, and wildlife viewing, among other activities, and take in the beauty of this iconic Canadian destination.

Ultimately, if you’re planning a trip to the area, we highly recommend visiting both Lake Louise and Lake Moraine. Each lake has its own unique beauty and charm, and you won’t want to miss either one.

Can you walk between Lake Louise and lake Moraine?

While it is technically possible to walk between Lake Louise and Lake Moraine, it’s not a recommended or practical option for most visitors. The journey would take you on no marked trails or facilities along the way. Also, it’s about 9 miles one way, definitely not a stroll in the park!

Visiting Banff National Park? See My Banff Travel Guide!

Frequently Asked Questions about Parking at Lake Moraine

The best way is to stay at the lodge located in the park, camp in the park, book a private tour or use the paid shuttle service by Parks Canada.

private vehicles are not allowed to drive up to Moraine Lake, but there are exceptions for disabled parking permits, tour buses, taxis, tour operators, and shuttle buses provided by Parks Canada.

The Parks Canada Moraine Lake Shuttle is $8 for adults, $4 for seniors, $2 for youth and under 6 years old is free for a return trip

Moraine Lake is typically open to visitors from mid-June to mid-October, depending on weather and road conditions. During the winter months, access to Moraine Lake is limited due to heavy snowfall and road closures.

Yes! Although it must fit on the Park and Ride Shuttle, public transit, or tour vehicle you are taking.

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Coco Tran — Aesthetic Travel Blog By Film Photographer Coco Tran
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