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Moraine Lake

The view of this turquoise lake in the Valley of the Ten Peaks has been immortalized on countless postcards and on the back of 20-dollar bills in Canada.

Moraine Lake is one of the most photographed scenes in Canada. The “Twenty Dollar View” takes in the turquoise lake and ten surrounding mountains. The vista was once the picture on the back of 20-dollar notes in Canada, and the nickname stuck.

Most visitors spend several hours soaking up the views and snapping pictures. The scene of rugged snow-capped peaks and crystal-clear water surrounded by larch trees is postcard-perfect. There are hiking trails around the lake and canoes for rent. The lake is only accessible June through September, as the road is blocked by snow in winter.

The lake is 8.7 miles (14 kilometers) from Lake Louise and about 1 hour’s drive west of Banff. From the parking lot, it’s a short walk, roughly 980 feet (300 meters), up a rocky hill to a viewing platform, where you’ll get the best view.

The glacial lake gets its startling blue color from the minerals in the water that come down from the surrounding mountains. The Valley of Ten Peaks has the third-highest mountain in the Canadian Rockies. The peak of Mount Temple is 11,500 feet (3,540 meters) high. Take all this in from the viewing platform.

The lake is brightest during the day when the sun is directly overhead. This is also when the lake is the most crowded, and it can be hard to find parking. Come before 10 a.m. and stay to watch the changing colors on the lake – the water’s surface reflects the ten peaks.

There are miles of hiking trails surrounding the lake. Hiking can be dangerous, because there are often bears roaming the area. Call Parks Canada for a safety update before you set out. Always walk in groups of four or more.


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Best Lodging Options Near Moraine Lake

See all 98 Properties near Moraine Lake
Moraine Lake Lodge
Moraine Lake Lodge

Moraine Lake Lodge

Moraine Lake Rd, Improvement District No. 9, Lake Louise, AB
     
    3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Situated on a lake, this romantic lodge is steps from Banff National Park and Moraine Lake. Icefields Parkway and Panorama Peak are also within 9 mi (15 km).

    Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise $471
    Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise

    Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise

    111 Lake Louise Drive, Lake Louise, AB
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Situated on a lake, this spa resort is steps from Banff National Park and Icefields Parkway. Lake Louise Mountain Resort and Lake Louise Gondola are also within 6 mi (10 km).

      Lake Louise Inn $116
      Lake Louise Inn

      Lake Louise Inn

      210 Village Road, Lake Louise, AB
         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Situated in a national park, this eco-friendly hotel is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Icefields Parkway and 2.1 mi (3.4 km) from Lake Louise Mountain Resort. Moraine Lake and Plain of Six Glaciers Teahouse are also within 9 mi (15 km). Lake Louise Station is 14 minutes by foot.

        Baker Creek Mountain Resort $103
        Baker Creek Mountain Resort

        Baker Creek Mountain Resort

        Bow Valley Parkway, Lake Louise, AB
           
          3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          This family-friendly Lake Louise hotel is located on a river, 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Banff National Park, and within 9 mi (15 km) of Lake Louise Gondola and Icefields Parkway. Lake Louise Mountain Resort and Plain of Six Glaciers Teahouse are also within 12 mi (20 km).

          Mountaineer Lodge $137
          Mountaineer Lodge

          Mountaineer Lodge

          101 Village Road, Lake Louise, AB
             
            2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Situated in a national park, this hotel is steps from Banff National Park and Icefields Parkway. Lake Louise Mountain Resort and Lake Louise Gondola are also within 3 mi (5 km). Lake Louise Station is 11 minutes by foot.

            Paradise Lodge & Bungalows $202
            Paradise Lodge & Bungalows

            Paradise Lodge & Bungalows

            105 Lake Louise Drive, Box 7, Lake Louise, AB
               
              2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated in a national park, this lodge is 3.5 mi (5.6 km) from Lake Louise Gondola and 7.9 mi (12.7 km) from Moraine Lake.

              Deer Lodge $187
              Deer Lodge

              Deer Lodge

              109 Lake Louise Drive, Lake Louise, AB
                 
                3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in a national park, this family-friendly hotel is 4.1 mi (6.7 km) from Lake Louise Mountain Resort and 4.2 mi (6.8 km) from Lake Louise Gondola.

                Storm Mountain Lodge Cabins & Dining
                Storm Mountain Lodge Cabins & Dining

                Storm Mountain Lodge Cabins & Dining

                Highway 93 South, Castle Junction, AB
                   
                  3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Situated in Castle Junction, this cabin is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Banff National Park and within 9 mi (15 km) of Johnston Canyon and Paint Pots Trailhead. Numa Falls is 11.9 mi (19.2 km) away.