Fancy going glamping in Alberta? From vintage airstreams, glamping pods and yurts, to spectacular cabins and lodges, there are plenty of unique places to stay in Alberta, Canada.
I’ve written a lot about my love of Alberta in Canada. I’ve visited the region twice now, once in the summer and once in the winter. If you’re debating when’s the best time to visit Alberta, I’ve compared summer and winter in my post here, which is well worth a read! It’s a difficult decision though, as each season is so different.
Alberta is a year-round province and the landscapes are truly spectacular whatever the season. In the summer you’ll find beautiful flowing waterfalls in places like Johnston Canyon, but then in winter they freeze and transform into shimmering frozen falls.
In the summer the lakes within Banff National Park are stunning shades of blue and turquoise, while in the winter they freeze over with a soft blanket of snow on top. Visit Lake Louise in winter and you can skate on the ice, while over at Lake Abraham you can check out the ice bubbles – a natural phenomenon caused by methane gas getting caught below the surface.
In the summer you can hike up the mountains, while in winter you can ski and snowboard down them.
Once you’ve decided when to visit, it’s time to book your accommodation. On one of my previous trips, I spent a few nights glamping in Elk Island National Park (close to Edmonton). It was incredible to enjoy the warm weather and be immersed in nature.
Meanwhile, in winter I loved my stay at Mount Engadine Lodge in Alberta’s backcountry. It was like a winter wonderland. I stayed in the main lodge, but if you’re looking to go glamping in Alberta, they had some cool yurts, cabins and cosy glamping tents too. I’ll tell you more about that experience in a moment.
I think glamping offers the best of both worlds. If you find camping in a tent a little too rustic or uncomfortable, try glamping. This form of comfort camping usually offers similarly picturesque surroundings, with a higher level of amenities. For example, a basic kitchen, bathing facilities, electricity and a proper bed.
Coming up, I’ve come up with my pick of the best places to go glamping in Alberta. As well as some quirky glamping spots, I’ve included some amazing lodges and cabins too, which still have nature on the doorstep, without staying in a hotel.
Best Places To Go Glamping In Alberta, Canada
Sleeps: 2 people comfortably, but can sleep 4 people
Glamping in Alberta has never been this quirky! This retro Airstream gives you the freedom to enjoy Canada’s stunning natural beauty on your own terms.
You book the campsite you want to stay at, and then the owners will deliver it the Airstream to the location for you. Let’s face it, many of Alberta’s campsites have seriously special and unique views, so you could be opening your doors each morning to stunning mountain or lake views. Or both!
With lots of windows around the front, the Airstream is light and airy inside. There’s a dining area, a sleeping area, shower, toilet, and a compact kitchen. Yep – all of that crammed into that metal shell! Surprising, isn’t it?
The dining area converts to a bed if you’re a group of 4. It’s a little cramped but it is possible. Outside is an awning which pulls out, so you can keep in the shade as you sit out and admire the view.
We were lucky enough to stay at a few of Alberta’s characterful lodges during our winter trip, and we loved them! They’re full of charm and often in the most picturesque of settings. Mount Engadine Lodge is almost an hour’s drive from the nearest big town (Canmore) so provides a real escape from the world.
We stayed in the main lodge, but this is a great place to go glamping in Alberta as there are also cabins glamping tents and a cute yurt at the end of a trail which sleeps four people. The views in winter are breath-taking – looking out onto a snow-covered valley with the Rockies just beyond.
There are plenty of ways to explore the untouched wilderness, whether that’s cross-country skiing, or using Mount Engadine Lodge’s snowshoes or fat bikes. Once you return, there’s a sauna downstairs to warm up!
I loved Mount Engadine’s approach to food, with its all-inclusive, family-style set up. Breakfast is included, and they also make you a packed lunch for your adventures outside. In the evening, everyone staying can choose to dine around one large table, enjoying a feast of fresh ingredients and sharing stories from their day.
We also loved their afternoon charcuterie boards, and noticed that even if you weren’t staying there, you could stop by on your hike and enjoy a platter by the fireplace.
Sleeps: 6 people
Sylvan Lake is a great location for a break in Alberta. With lots of trails in the area, a beach for swimming, places to kayak, canoe and paddle board, it’s a lovely place to visit on holiday. Kids in particular will love it!
If you fancy going glamping in Alberta but don’t fancy slumming it, this adorable cabin is ideal. It’s in a full A-frame style. Just look at the pointy bedroom – so cute and cosy!
Inside you’ll find everything you need for a comfortable break in Alberta, including a full kitchen, bathroom, lounge, dining area and bedrooms. There’s a stylish touch to the décor too, with modern, Scandinavian influences.
Outside there’s a private back yard on one side and a front porch on the other. There’s even a fire pit. I think this is an ideal cabin for a family looking for accommodation near Sylvan Lake.
Sleeps: 9 people
Located to the west of Calgary, this treehouse-style chalet is seriously special! Tucked away in the forest with views of the mountains, this wooden home is modern, with large windows and stylish décor. It’s ideal for anyone looking for a nature fix, but still wanting to be close to the city (Calgary is only 20 mins by car).
The inside has been designed by a professional interior designer, with a Scandi-style minimalist theme, including a wooden spiral staircase. On the deck you’ll find outdoor seating surrounded by the forest and pretty plants. It’d be a lovely place to sit and read a book, enjoy a meal with family or even an outdoor yoga session.
This is the ideal house for a weekend getaway with friends or family. If you want to add a little more to your trip, this Airbnb offers a pizza experience, with a chef cooking up a feast using the wood burning pizza oven. Just when I thought I couldn’t love it any more, they throw in PIZZA!
Sleeps: 7 people
When you see this woodland cabin, you might be surprised to hear it sleeps up to 7 people. It’s cute and compact, complete with bunk beds and a level tucked away in the loft area.
It has its own basic kitchen too. For other facilities you’ll need to step outside of the cabin along to the new bathhouse. There’s a BBQ and hot tub available too – what a fun place to go glamping in Alberta!
The location is also beautiful, moments from Sylvan Lake. You can enjoy kayaking, long walks, bike rides and more through this part of Alberta. It’s lovely in the winter time too, with its roof covered in snow. Oh, and this is also an area known for its starry skies, so once the sun goes down, don’t forget to look up and take in the magic above!
Sleeps: Up to 24 people
If you’re looking for accommodation in Alberta for a big group, this is an amazing option. These two log cabins (Beaver House and Deer House) can be rented together, making this the perfect location for a gathering of friends or family. These don’t fit into the ‘glamping’ idea as they’re kitted out pretty luxuriously, however they are immersed in the natural beauty of the region.
There’s a lot of character to both of the houses, with their wooden interiors and open plan living areas. The sun room in Deer House looks particularly special, with its large windows and great views.
These lodges are in a great location for making the most of your time in Alberta. You’re 30 minutes from the buzz of Calgary and one hour from Banff’s spectacular scenery. The cabins themselves are set in 30 acres of land, so you’ll have a lot of fun discovering ponds, walking trails, a BBQ, treehouse and more!
Sleeps: 10 people
Located between Calgary and Canmore, this unique ranch is unique in every way. It has massive log beams holding up the roof, as well as spectacular floor to ceiling windows on two sides.
The architecture is incredible. It creates a real openness to the space, with lots of light streaming through the windows, and nature as far as the eye can see. The kitchen is a huge open plan space, ideal for catering for a big family get-together.
If you’re visiting in winter, this ranch is nice and cosy inside, especially once you use the large wood-burning fireplace. Meanwhile, in summer it’s got some lovely areas to relax inside, including a large lawn, patio with seating, and a fire pit.
While the ranch is special, the views are even more magical, with a backdrop of the Rocky Mountains. It’s in a great location for getting to the mountains for skiing or hiking, or to wilder spots nearby, including the Bow River. This is definitely one of the prettiest stops if you’re driving from Calgary to Canmore.
Sleeps: 2 people
This is one of the most unique places to stay in Alberta. The 25-foot Vintage motorhome is located right in the forest, with stunning views of Moose Mountain.
It’s a great option for couples looking for a romantic getaway in Alberta. The motorhome is full of charm, with a true retro feel – yep, we’re talking 70s styling all around.
Inside is a bed and sofa area as well as a fully-working kitchenette. Meanwhile, outside you’ll find a private deck area (complete with pretty lights) plus a BBQ and fire pit. Just imagine barbecuing here – what a spot!
This is a great place if you’re looking for some distraction-free time with your other half. There are countless trails and mountain biking routes close by too, so you can get your adventure fix during the day, then relax and cosy up at night.
Sleeps: 12 people
Is this the most unique place to stay in Calgary? When I last visited the city, I stayed in a smart hotel, but now I wish I’d suggested this cute cabin instead!
This wooden riverside cabin oozes character. It was built in 1909 and has a rustic vibe with a wood-burning fireplace, a comfy lounge, large kitchen and chic bedrooms in the loft area. The views are lovely too. You can sit out on the patio, enjoying a BBQ, looking out over the Elbow River. In the mornings you’ll hear the birds tweeting outside – something that’s pretty unusual when you stay in a big city!
When you think of glamping in Alberta you probably don’t think of being anywhere near a city, so I love that there are unique places like this to choose from. It’s also ideal for tourists visiting Calgary for the first time, as you’re within walking distance of the downtown district and many of the city’s key attractions.
Now you’ve chosen your accommodation, you need to decide where to visit for your nature fix. If you’re looking for some beautiful locations for outdoor experiences in Alberta, I’d recommend heading straight for the nearest provincial or national park. Here are a few of my top recommendations:
- Banff National Park
- Jasper National Park
- Waterton National Park
- Elk Island National Park
- Dinosaur Provincial Park
- Lesser Slave Lake Provincial Park
- Pigeon Lake Provincial Park
- Sylvan Lake Provincial Park
- Writing-On-Stone Provincial Park
- Sir Winston Churchill Provincial Park
- Cypress Hills Provincial Park
- Kananaskis Country
- Miquelon Lake Provincial Park
- Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site
I hope you’ve enjoyed my guide to glamping in Alberta, and you find the perfect accommodation for your trip. With so many beautiful options, deciding will be tricky!
Before you travel, be sure to check out my detailed guides about travelling in Alberta:
Useful Information for visiting Banff in winter – clothes, driving info, prices etc
There are so many unique places to stay in Alberta, let me know where you end up!
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