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Thursday, June 30, 2011

Banff Is #1 Again!


For the second time in two months, Banff has been named as Canada’s #1 destination!

Trip Advisor – Number 1 Destination in Canada
The powerhouse of vacation reviews, the results don’t lie. As voted for by people who have travelled to the area, the opinions are as honest as they come, and people voted in huge numbers, letting Banff National Park claim the top spot.

Group Travel Planner – Banff Number 1 Destination as voted for by Canadian Travel Agents.
As voted for by 4,800 Canadian travel agents, these professionals know their stuff and voted Banff National Park into the top spot as the top domestic destination for the fourth year running!

Along with Trip Advisor and the Group Travel Awards, here are a few other accolades for Banff, not that we’re bragging or anything:

•    Westjet Up! Magazine Readers Survey, #1 Favourite Canadian Park
•    Trip Advisor Traveler’s Choice Awards, #3 Top Family Destinations in Canada
•    RVwest Magazine Readers Choice Award, #1 Favourite Overall Destination in Alberta

Come share the beauty of Banff National Park with us, and see what all the fuss is about!

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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Ultimate Alberta Summer Music


Those who live and have visited the Rocky Mountains and our great province of Alberta know how much pride we have for where we live. As do others, it seems who have made songs about our land and its great beauty.

We counted over 350 songs written about Canada’s provinces and territories; 50 of those about Alberta! With a mix of folk music with a few big names, it seems we aren’t the only ones who are proud of our land.

Choosing some of the best, we have compiled the Ultimate Alberta Summer Music list, for you to enjoy on your visit.

Alberta Bound – Paul Brandt

Listen here

Four Strong Winds (Think I’ll go out to Alberta) – Neil Young

Listen here

Alberta – Eric Clapton

Listen here

Heaven in Alberta – Big Sugar
Listen here

Blue Canadian Rockies – Wilf Carter

Listen here

Alberta Rose – Rick Mogg

Listen here

Canadian Railroad Trilogy - Gordon Lightfoot

Listen here

Take me back to old Alberta – Stopmin’ Tom Connors

Listen here

Springtime in the Rockies – Slim Whitman
Listen here

What songs remind you of Alberta?

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Thursday, June 23, 2011

6 Reasons to Get On Your Bike in Banff


The benefits of getting out the car and onto a bike are great. Apart from feeling like a kid again (c’mon, we all get that feeling on a bike) it’s also great for your mind and body.

The Douglas fir Resort offers discounts off bike rentals at Backtrax on Bear St. They offer 5 different bike types from city to mountain; to kid and junior bikes (complete with training wheels), helmets, repair kits and more!

With an endless list of things to do in Banff, here are a few good reasons to saddle up and get peddling:

Family fun
Make some memories for the whole family. Whether it’s teaching your kids how to ride, taking a picnic out to picturesque spots or even renting a tandem bike, those types of family memories last forever.

See Things Off the Map
There are some things only visible from the many trails in and around Banff National Park. Hidden treasures, secret campsites and serene lakes. You won’t regret making the effort.

Clears the Mind
Living in a world of rush, rush, rush soon takes its toll. So breathing in the fresh mountain air, feeling the wind in your hair, and having a sense of freedom does a lot for the mind.

Don’t be afraid! There are enough flat trails in and around Banff as well as the more rugged terrain to suit your ability. Even a gentle ride by Vermillion Lakes will do you a world of wonders. Better than sitting in the car anyways!

Cheaper than Petrol
Anyone heard about those rising gas prices? Well stop driving and start riding!

Direct your Own Route
Take your holiday into your own hands. Grab a map, plan your route and set out for the day. Stop at every landmark, enjoy as many breaks as you like or push on to your goal. It’s all up to you.

Just another day in Banff

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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Lazy Days by the Lake


 Video Courtesey of Brewster Travel

Picture a warm summer’s day, blue skies, a picnic and you, lying lazily by the lake. Yes, now is the time to self-indulge in a bit of relaxation, and Lake Minnewanka is the perfect place to do it.

Lake Minnewanaka boasts amazing views, serene waters, great activities and yet all in a relaxed atmosphere. One of the highlights is the boat tour, which takes you on a 60 minute journey around the lake, with fantastic commentary from some of the real locals in town. Lake Minnewanka boat tours are available as part of our Summer Splashin’ package or you can add on your own tickets which include the Boat Tour plus the Banff Gondola!

If you want to be captain of your own boat tour, why not rent your own private, boat. Ideal for getting away from it all and even for some fishing! Fishing permits can be bought from the Tourist Information Centre on Banff Avenue, and with the amount of trout in the lake, we’d say it’s well worth it! You can even bring some home to your hotel in Banff, to cook in your fully stocked kitchen in your room. Be sure to check Banff National Park fishing regulations before you go. If you want something smaller again canoe rentals are also available.

If dry land is more your thing, take your pick from the plentiful picnic areas or drive the Lake Minnewanka Loop that will bring you full circle around the lake. Wildlife is common on this little tour so be sure to drive slow and keep your eyes open for some wildlife spotting.

There’s only 94 days of summer left, let’s get out there and make the most of it.

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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Father’s Day Weekend in Banff


It’s time to celebrate everything that is great about you father! What is better than a bike racing, a classic car show and some evening music. Put a smile on your Dad's face this weekend (especially if he supports Vancouver).

Touring Tin Show
For the 32nd year, Banff will see the invasion of the classic Touring Tin car show. Drivers will be showing off their pride and joy of fully restored ‘street rods’ and classic cars from yesteryear.  Polished and primed, the cars will be located at the end of Banff Avenue in Central Park for viewing. A BBQ will also be on the go between 12-2pm. Proceeds of the BBQ will go to a local charity.

Banff Bike Fest
As fully detailed in a previous blog, this weekend will see the fantastic annual Banff Bike Fest. With over 500 riders coming to the area to compete in a series of grueling races that will see riders put to the test. Saturday will see a more comedic take on the race with the Cruiser Crit and Little Crit races (fancy dress is often a must) down Banff Avenue. Routes and best spectator spots can be found here.

Music for a summer’s Evening
With various performances throughout summer, the Banff Center plays host to some of the best young and professional musicians from across Canada and the world. Relax and take in the atmosphere.

Happy Fathers Day to all Dad’s out there.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Events in Banff - Performance in the Park


A warm summers evening, a picnic and some live music. You’ve got to admit, Banff knows how to entertain the masses. Yes, the weekend of Saturday the 25th of June will see a fantastic live performance from Great Big Sea. A homegrown group who pride themselves on being one of Canada’s pre-eminent bands. 

Now in their 18th year, Great Big Sea has seen international success and still remain loyal to their old stomping grounds. Known for performing energetic rock versions of Newfoundland folk songs, Great Big Sea bring Canada’s heritage to present day.

The concert will be held in Cascade Park from 4-7pm (gates open at 3). Tickets are available via Parks Administration Building grounds. Adult tickets are prices at $35 and a child ticket (2 to 12 years old) $10. Children under 2 years old are admitted free without a ticket. The concert will be held in Cascade Gardens.

Make sure you bring your picnics, rugs and lawn chairs to set yourselves up for a great evening!

With a backdrop of the Rockies and the company of great people around you, it’s a summers evening you’re sure not to forget.

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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Oh Canada! The Ultimate Canada Day Event Guide


Canada Day. A time to celebrate and show our pride for our great nation, its remarkable history and its bright future. From the rolling Rockies, to the majestic prairies, breathtaking coastal lines, metropolitan cities and stunning northern territories. Let’s be honest, we have a lot to be proud about.

Banff will be celebrating our national day with pride and vigor (as usual) and there is always an amazing atmosphere in town. Plus, entry into Banff National Park is FREE on July 1st!

Must have items for a perfect day:
Sun cream or umbrellas – whatever the weather decides, events will go ahead.
Lawn chairs, blankets – set up for the day!
Cash – no card transactions on any stalls
Maple Leaf attire – hats, flags, face paint. Anything and everything goes!

Canada Day Events

9 – 10:30 a.m
Parks Canada Pancake Breakfast
Parks Canada Admin Grounds

10:30 a.m. – 2 p.m
Sidewalk Art
Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies

Noon – 11pm – Central Park
Central Park Activities Commence

12:30 - 1 p.m
Hunt Family First Nations (Dancing & Drumming)

1 - 1:30 p.m
Stampede City Chorus (45 person choir)

1:30 - 2 p.m
Steve Harmer's Motivational Magic

2 - 3 p.m
Stupid Pet Tricks

3 - 3:30 p.m
Polonez Polish Dancers

3:30 - 4 p.m
Free Rangers, Park Warden's Music

5 – 6:30 p.m
Banff Canada Day Parade
Banff Avenue
The biggest parade yet! Click here for a parade route map!                                                                                                             

6:30 – 11 p.m
Central Park Entertainment

6:45 – 7 p.m
Calgary Fiddlers (toe-tapping fiddle music)

7 - 8 p.m
Suds (Country - Rock Band)

8 - 9 p.m
Suzie Q (High Energy Hits)

9 - 10 p.m
Boneyard (Banff's local Rockers)

10 – 11 p.m
Under Pressure (Rock & Roll Reunion Tour)

11 p.m
Banff Canada Day Fireworks
View from Central Park or Bow Avenue

All of this, not to mention the activities on Banff Avenue, food tasting, stalls, face-painting, music, street performances and a great atmosphere.

Rooms are booking fast, so come down and bring your family for an unforgettable Canada Day in Banff.


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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

May’s Pet of the Month!


Annnnd the winner for May is...*cue drum roll*...Jade!!

Congratulations to Jade a young Chesapeake, with a bit of Labrador, caught our attention with her fantastic facial expressions and inquisitive personality. The only girl in a litter of 5, she knows how to handle herself and is described by her owner as feisty and loyal. Fantastic with people and great with children, Jade is rarely seen without a Frisbee in her mouth, waiting for you to throw it!

We received some truly great entries for May and we want to thank you for sending in your photos.

The competition is open to the end of the year, so keep sending in your photos of your pets to ! You can enter as many times as you like and we love seeing your pets in their element.

Funny Captions For Your Photos – as well as sending in your photo, we also want a caption to go with it! What is your pet thinking? What would they say at that moment if they could talk? We all know how much personality our pets have, so let other people know, and we will put up a montage of our favorites, just for fun!

Those who win the Pet of the Month go into the running for the grand prize draw at the end of the year to win a 2 nights stay at the Douglas Fir Resort and Chalets. For the finer details on the competition, click here.

Pets, practice your poses and owners, start sending in your photo entries for June!
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Thursday, June 2, 2011

How we go the extra mile for you


At the Douglas Fir we pride ourselves on our customer service, making you feel welcome and like you’re home away from home. We are so proud, that we want to show off our staff to everyone out there. We will be highlighting a member of staff from each department, and detailing how we go that extra mile for you.

Today we focus on our Front Desk Agents. They see you through your entire stay from handling your reservations over the phone and online, to waving you off when it’s time to leave. They are highly skilled in everything they do, from delivering breakfast packages in temperatures from -30 to +30, to recommending the best places to visit and being on hand 24hours a day. They are there to ensure your stay is exceptional.

Name: Jill Turner         Position: Front Desk Agent

Best feature of the Douglas Fir Resort
: The location of the hotel with its views and the wildlife is unbeatable.

How do you go the extra mile for our guests: By always making them feel welcome with a smile and a greeting. Plus delivering their breakfast and BBQ packages to their rooms in all weather conditions!

Best activity in Banff: The horse trail riding along the bow river! Top tip: make sure you get the white horse named Snoopy.

Hiking or camping: Both!

Would you rather hug a grizzly or pet a skunk: A Grizzly Bear!

Why did you come to Banff: I came to Banff to experience the culture and make friends from all over the world.

You can check out our top customer service reviews on Trip Advisor and why we strive to make sure your needs are always our first priority.

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Douglas Fir Resort & Chalets

Tunnel Mountain Road
P.O. Box 1228
Banff, Alberta T1L 1B2 Canada

For reservations call toll free:
Toll free fax: 1-800-267-8774
Calgary Direct Line: 264-2563
Phone: (403) 762-5591
Fax: (403) 762-8774

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