13 bucket-list camping spots you have to check out in Alberta this summer

Apr 13 2023, 4:23 pm

Get your camping gear ready because the great outdoors is calling your name and there are plenty of bucket-list spots to enjoy in Alberta.

From spots to pitch a tent in the Rockies to ones nice and close to some towering waterfalls, here are 13 bucket-list spots you should spend some time at this summer.

Kananaskis Interlakes Campground


Visiting the Kananaskis Lakes is like literally stepping into the photo of a postcard. A beautiful lake, soaring mountains, and thick wilderness. Once you visit, you’ll want to hit up Peter Lougheed Provincial Park every single summer. The campground along the shores of Lower Kananaskis Lake has around 45 well-treed campsites for RVs and tents. From here, there is easy access to the lakes for those hoping to canoe, fish, or go boating.

Distance from Calgary: 139 km
Distance from Edmonton: 425 km

Writing on Stone Provincial Park Campground


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Stories and tales have been carved into these stones by Indigenous people more than several hundred years ago. Writing on Stone Provincial Park is the perfect place to get away from the city and get in touch with your Canadian roots — all while enjoying a lazy day near Milk River, or taking a dip in the refreshing water. The campground is open year-round.

Distance from Calgary: 340 km
Distance from Edmonton: 631 km

Crimson Lake Campground

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Crimson Lake Provincial Park offers year-round camping just 14 km west of Rocky Mountain House. With more than 100 sites to choose from during the peak camping months, there is plenty of hiking, biking, and lounging on the beach to be had.

Distance from Calgary: 230 km
Distance from Edmonton: 226 km

Lesser Slave Lake Provincial Park Campground


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Marten River Campground in Lesser Slave Lake Provincial Park has over 110 sites, both unserviced and with power. Sites are well-spaced and surrounded by trees, with a few spots right by the lake. Hike or bike the trails, relax on the natural sand beach, enjoy fishing or boating on the lake, and visit the Boreal Centre for Bird Conservation. It is one of Canada’s northernmost bird observatories and is one of the only boreal forest bird observatories in the world.

Distance from Calgary: 585 km
Distance from Edmonton: 287 km

Crescent Falls Campground

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You won’t want to leave these falls after seeing them this summer! Stay a night — or a week — and enjoy the cool water of Crescent Falls, along with horseback riding and some fishing as well! Maybe you’ll take a dip in the chilly water to wash off that summer sweat.

Distance from Calgary: 327 km
Distance from Edmonton: 323 km

Rolling Hills Reservoir Campground

Approximately 20 kilometres south of Brooks, the Rolling Hills Reservoir Campground has plenty of trees to keep you cool and secluded, and of course, there is plenty of water to splash around in. A total of 110 sites are available as daily-use sites. The remaining 35 are seasonal lease sites designated through an annual campsite draw at the beginning of April.

Distance from Calgary: 217 km
Distance from Edmonton: 450 km

Hidden Cove


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Located IN Alberta’s Maligne Lake, Hidden Cove really lives up to its name because to get here, you’ve got to kayak, canoe, or boat your way on over to the site. It’s worth the effort though, being greeted by immense nature and spectacular views. It’s probably one of the most unique natural campsites in the entire province and one of the best ways to experience the Rockies.

Distance from Calgary: 461 km
Distance from Edmonton: 403 km

Bow Valley


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With its turquoise waters and vast mountain ranges, Bow Valley will transport your mind to a place of pure bliss. Grab a canoe and paddle along the Bow River for an even better view of the beautiful outdoors! If you are a rock climber, this place offers several routes for you to ascend (or try to, at least).

Distance from Calgary: 83 km
Distance from Edmonton: 370 km

Spray Lakes West Campground


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Located just 16 kilometres south of Canmore, the Spray Lakes West Campground boasts the shores of the Spray Lakes Reservoir and mountain views. What more can you ask for?

Distance from Calgary: 123 km
Distance from Edmonton: 409 km

Sir Winston Churchill Provincial Park


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With year-round cabins, the islands of this park are open to be explored in summer and winter. Rentals of canoes, kayaks, and stand-up paddleboards are available to discover the waters of Lac la Biche. Trails throughout the Old Growth Forest allow campers to hike and bike to all the sandy beaches.

Distance from Calgary: 528 km
Distance from Edmonton: 224 km

Elk Island National Park

Campers enjoy the comfortable beds in Parks Canada oTENTiks... Elk Island National Park

Parks Canada

You don’t need to go home after watching a beautiful sunset or catching the Northern Lights at Elk Island National Park. The national park boasts three camping sites with options to stay in a tent, RV, or the backcountry. Plus, the wildlife viewing is incredible here.

Distance from Calgary: 343 km
Distance from Edmonton: 48 km

Two Jack Lakeside Campground

This is one of Banff’s most popular and stunning campgrounds. Located just 10 kilometres from the town of Banff and close to Lake Minnewanka, this rustic, no-service campground is beautifully situated on the shores of Two Jack Lake. Wake up to the sight of the lake and make sure to bring a paddle board or small canoe– you’re going to want to make use of being so close to the water! There is a 22-site walk-in tenting area and campers must park in their designated parking spot and access the campsite on foot.

Distance from Calgary: 128 km
Distance from Edmonton: 417 km

Brazeau River Campground

Brazeau River Campground, in the Brazeau River Provincial Recreation Area, is 72 km north of Nordegg on Forestry Trunk Road (Highway 734). This small, treed campground along the Brazeau River has a cook shelter and provides opportunities for activities in the surrounding area. These include canoeing/kayaking, fishing, horse riding, and OHV trails (outside the recreation area). You’re in the thick of wilderness, and the beauty of nature is bountiful out here.

Distance from Calgary: 366 km
Distance from Edmonton: 279 km

Laine MitchellLaine Mitchell

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