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Pick up your RV in Airdrie in the morning and head east via Highway 567, until it merges with Highway 9. Approximately 17 km west of Drumheller, Horseshoe Canyon is an eye-popping sight. Get a first impression of this majestic landscape from the viewing platforms at the top of the canyon.
Option to enjoy a longer, scenic hike down into the canyon. Arrive in Midland Provincial Park in the afternoon. The park was once the site of the Midland Coal Mine and is the perfect base to explore Drumheller.
Witness one of the world’s largest displays of dinosaurs at the Royal Tyrrell Museum in the morning. The nearby Horsethief Canyon is where bright yellow canola fields and giant rocking pump jacks meet the precipice of pure Badlands splendor. Stand at the canyon edge and take in the entire valley down below. Just 10 kilometers southeast of Drumheller lies the tiny village of Wayne, once a thriving coal-mining town of more than 3,000.
You will reach the town after crossing eleven single lane, wooden bridges and passing countless abandoned homes and mining equipment along the way. The historic Last Chance Saloon still serves visitors. Stop at the 117-meter long Star Mine suspension bridge over the Red Deer River on your way back to the campsite.
The area was once home to no less than 139 different mines, but nowadays the Atlas Coal Mine National Historic Site is the only place dedicated to preserving the days when “Coal was King” in the Drumheller Valley. The Tipple, Tunnel and Train tours tell amazing stories of the miners from around the world who came here to seek their fortunes.
Continue your trip to Dinosaur Provincial Park, the largest and most spectacular area of badlands in Canada. The unique riverside habitat includes extensive groves of plains cottonwood trees that provide critical living space for many bird species.
Travel south on Highway 876 to reach the Trans-Canada Highway (Highway 1). Continue southeast to reach the city of Medicine Hat, where you can visit the world’s largest Teepee. The visitor centre offers guided first nation tours to learn about the indigenous history through the eyes of a local guide.
Medicine Hat has a rich industrial history, and the historic Clay district illustrates the combination of factors that led to Medicine Hat’s emergence as the largest supplier of clay products west of Ontario.
Depart Medicine Hat in the morning for the 2 hour drive to Lethbridge. Railway enthusiasts can visit the Galt Historic Railway Park via a short detour. The Lethbridge Viaduct is a massive steel trestle over the Oldman River designed by the Canadian Pacific Railway. It is the largest railway structure in the country.
The Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden is a hidden gem in southern Alberta and exhibits a traditional teahouse, bell tower, gates and bridges.
Depart Lethbridge Via Highway 3 to reach Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump Interpretive Centre in the morning. This UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site preserves and interprets over 6,000 years of Plains Buffalo culture.
Continue south to Pincher Creek, from where Highway 6 will take you to the town of Waterton.
Clear lakes, thundering waterfalls, rainbow-coloured streams, colourful rocks and mountain vistas await hikers and sightseers. With an exceptional diversity of wildlife and wildflowers and a cozy little waterfront town to serve as a home base to explore the National Park today. Waterton Lakes National Park has 200 kilometres of hiking trails, ranging from easy strolls to strenuous wilderness hikes.
The park is a particularly good place to enjoy a variety of shorter trails which can be easily completed in a few hours. Step aboard the historic M.V. International, the oldest passenger ship still operating in Canada, and take in breathtaking scenery on a 2-hour scenic cruise. View majestic towering cliffs and beautiful waterfalls while learning more about the Park and the interconnected ecosystems.
Depart Waterton in the morning and take the Cowboy Trail (Highway 22) back towards Calgary. Here in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, the Old West is still evident in the art, history, food, hospitality, and culture of the foothill’s residents. Along the way, you are likely to see cowboys out herding cattle, sometimes right along the highway. Return your RV to Fraserway RV in Airdrie before 11:30 am.
Travel Inspiration Guide
Explore Canada coast to coast with these 20 RV itineraries.
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