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13 BEST Stops on the Drive from Edmonton to Kamloops

13 BEST Stops on the Drive from Edmonton to Kamloops

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So, you’re planning a road trip between Edmonton and Kamloops? Lucky you! This under-rated drive connects two very different cities. Your starting point, Edmonton, is a vibrant, “young” city that’s home to an epic city park (River Valley) and lots of fantastic restaurants, bars, and cafes. While Kamloops is a much smaller city surrounded by rugged mountains and with a very outdoorsy vibe. Dare I say, it’s one of the best cities in BC!

Taking a road trip between these two cities will feature plenty of breathtaking mountain scenery and gorgeous provincial parks. There’s even a world-famous tourist town by the name of Jasper thrown in for good measure!

And you definitely DO NOT want to rush this drive. I mean, there are not many drives in the world that include unique sand dunes, a provincial park with more than 40 waterfalls, and the aptly named “Grizzly Bear Valley” – I won’t give too much away on these awesome places yet, you’ll have to read the rest of the blog post to find out why they’re such worthy stops!

If you don’t stop, this road trip should be around 8.5 hours (805 kilometers/500 miles) in total. But you will definitely regret doing this drive in one sitting, as you’ll miss out on so much beauty!

In this road trip guide, I’ll take you through the 13 best places to stop on the drive from Edmonton to Kamloops. From the “waterfall park” to Grizzly Bear Valley and everything in between, this will be a memorable drive, one of the best in Western Canada, in my opinion!

Note you can also do this road trip in reverse from Kamloops to Edmonton!

About the Drive from Edmonton to Kamloops

Aerial landscape view of a scenic road in the valley surrounded by the beautiful Canadian Mountains.

The journey between Edmonton and Kamloops is 805 kilometers (500 miles) long, and it will take you 8.5 hours to drive without stops. You’ll be following Highway 5 for most of the way before turning onto Highway 16 (aka the Yellowhead Highway) before Jasper. What’s great is that both of these are main highways, which means an easy drive. But, it’s still a very scenic drive despite being along a busy highway – because you pass through two provincial parks – Jasper National Park and Mount Robson Provincial Park. And in the later part of the drive, you’ll be driving next to the North Thompson River. 

As I mentioned above, there’s a lot to see on the drive from Edmonton to Kamloops, which is why I recommend allowing at least three full days to fully immerse yourself in the natural beauty of this section of Canada’s West. There are plenty of places to stay along the way, but we recommend JasperValemount, and Clearwater for the variety of accommodation options on offer. 

Waterfall fans will fall in love with this road trip because you’ll be passing by two scenic falls – Rearguard Falls and Overlander Falls, as well as Wells Gray Provincial Park, which is home to over 40 waterfalls! 

Adrenalin junkies, too, are spoiled for choice with the stops I’ve included below – you can join a river safari tour to see grizzly bears in Blue River, go mountain biking in Valemount, or white water rafting in Clearwater! 

If you plan to drive this route in the summer, be prepared for wildlife that may suddenly appear on the road, this is most common when driving through the national parks. On the other hand, if you are doing this road trip in the winter, keep in mind that winter tires are essential. It can get pretty snowy and icy around Jasper National Park, and although it’s cleared frequently, you should always drive to the conditions. 

You can take an alternative route between Edmonton and Kamloops, but it is longer at 910 kilometers (565 miles) and will take 9.5 hours without stops. The main difference with this route is that it passes by Banff and Calgary and follows the Trans-Canada Highway most of the way. So, if Banff is a must-visit, you should consider this option. If you do this route, be sure to drive the Icefields Parkway from Banff to Jasper – it’s one of the most scenic drives in the world!

The BEST Stops on the Drive from Edmonton to Kamloops

1. Edmonton

Bailey walks across the Walterdale Bridge in the river valley in Edmonton Alberta
The Walterdale Bridge in the River Valley!
A beer from Alley Kat Brewing in Edmonton
Enjoying a beer at Alley Cat Brewing in Edmonton!

The second biggest city in Alberta, Edmonton, is a vibrant and bustling metropolis, and it makes for the perfect starting point for your road trip to Kamloops. As you can imagine, in such a large city (it has a population of around 1 million people), there’s plenty to do in Edmonton. In fact, there are so many great activities on offer here that we advise spending at least one night and one full day here! 

This city is one of the sunniest in the country, recording an average of 325 sunny days per year, and that’s great news for visitors because it means you can enjoy outdoor activities without having to worry about rain (well, not too much anyway!).

Having said that, I actually prefer visiting Edmonton in the winter because it’s quieter and cheaper, and although it’s cold (average temperatures in winter -5°C/23°F), the sun is still likely to be out! 

One of my favorite things to do in Edmonton on a summer day is to spend time at the River Valley, a huge park (it’s 22 times the size of Central Park in New York!). I love walking one of the many hiking trails here – FYI there are a whopping 150 kilometers (93 miles) of trails in the park. And in the winter, some trails are cleared for cross-country skiing – a great winter sport to try in Edmonton! Also worth checking out in the River Valley is the Muttart Conservatory, which houses one of the biggest indoor botanical collections in the country.  

If guided tours are more your travel style, then why not hop on this 90-minute segway adventure through the most scenic parts of the River Valley? Or, if you’re in the city during the summer, join a relaxing cruise or a fun speedboat ride on the river with Black Gold River Tours.  

If the weather isn’t ideal – one of the best indoor attractions in Edmonton is wandering the West Edmonton Mall, aka the second-largest shopping mall in North America. It’s home to no less than 800 stores, so many restaurants and cafes, and even two hotels! The “West Ed,” as locals call it, is like a mini city, and you could easily spend a full day here and not see it all. There are even thrilling attractions in West Edmonton Mall, like an indoor skating rink, rollercoasters, and a water park! 

If you love art, you’ll find Edmonton’s Neon Sign Museum so cool. It’s the perfect nighttime activity as more than 20 neon signs light up 104 Street on the east side of the TELUS building and the south side of Mercer Warehouse. 

Foodies love Edmonton, too, as there’s a huge variety of excellent restaurants in Edmonton serving up every cuisine imaginable. The best ones, in our opinion, can be found on Jasper Ave and Whyte Ave. 

If you love a highly-rated guided tour (we think it’s the best way to see a new city), check out all the awesome tours in Edmonton here!

Related Read: If you have time during your stay in Canada, why not drive from Edmonton to Vancouver, it’s a truly scenic roadtrip and beautiful Vancouver has lots of great things to do!

2. Pembina Provincial Park

two women float down the Pembina River on tubes
The River Float here is so fun!
Bailey and Daniel wade in the water at Pembina River
The day-use area is a nice place to relax.

As you leave the city of Edmonton’s bright lights behind, it’s time to prepare yourself for an adventure in the great outdoors at Pembina River Provincial Park! Just over an hour’s drive (105 km/65 miles) will get you here. It’s one of my favorite provincial parks in Alberta and is a worthy first stop on your drive between Edmonton to Kamloops. 

This picturesque park holds a lot of nostalgia for me as I spent my teenage years in nearby Spruce Grove, so Pembina River was always our go-to spot for swimming and camping. 

At Pembina Provincial Park you can book a campsite (you should book in advance as it is really popular) and stay here. They have both powered and non-powered campsites suitable for tents, trailers/RVs. Camping reservations can be made on the Alberta Parks website.

Or, you can just stop in and enjoy the Day Use area. In the day-use area, you can relax at the river’s edge and go for a swim. The river is very calm in this area, so it is a good swimming spot. There are also toilets and picnic tables available.

While if you’re visiting between the end of May and the Labor Day weekend, allow more time to have a thrilling float on the Pembina River. It’s such a popular thing to do here in the summer, so you should book your place online in advance. To start the float, you must drive to the starting point and either pay to park, rent a tube, or even organize return transport from the endpoint. There is a business set up here (the only place to access the river) that will help you plan your float. The last time we did it, we rented tubes and took advantage of the transport and it cost about $35 CAD per person. 

3. Folding Mountain Brewery

a grilled cheese and beer from Folding Mountain Brewing in Jasper National Park
Grilled cheese and a beer – yum! Photo Credit: Folding Mountain Brewing

Who doesn’t love a cold craft beer? Your next stop, Folding Mountain Brewery, is one of the best craft breweries in the province, so if you’re a beer-lover (like me), stopping here is a no-brainer! Even if you’re not a beer drinker or are driving, stopping here is still recommended – it offers great views thanks to its location on the edge of Jasper National Park, and they also serve up great appetizers and sandwiches!  

If you’re visiting in the summer, take a seat on their outdoor patio and feel the sun on your face as you drink a beer while taking in the mountain views. If you’re passing by in winter, sit in their cozy indoor tasting room, which also offers great views. 

My two favorite beers here are the Moraine West Coast IPA and the Folding Mountain Lager, which are brewed with water from the nearby Rockies (FYI, all their craft beer is!).

If you plan to drink lots of beer, you should check into the onsite Overlander Mountain Lodge!

4. Miette Hot Springs

woman stands in the miette hot springs with mountains behind her
Such a beautiful location! Photo Credit: Travel Alberta / Roth and Ramberg

There are four pools at Miette Hot Springs – two cold and two hot – so be sure to experience all of them by allowing at least two hours here. You’ll be fascinated by the breathtaking mountain views and the abundant wildlife like beaver, elk, and birds often seen from the pools!

Entrance costs $16.50 CAD, and there are changing rooms, showers, and lockers. Get here early for a more peaceful experience, as it can get very busy here in the afternoon! Remember that Miette Hot Springs are typically only open from May to October.

It is also important to note that Miette Hot Springs is a bit of a detour from the road to Kamloops. You’ll need to turn off onto Miette Road and drive for a few minutes to reach them, but we assure you that the short detour is totally worth it to experience one of Alberta’s best hot springs.

Top Tip – spend the night at the nearby Miette Mountain Cabins!

5. Jasper Lake Sand Dunes

view of JAsper Lake surrounded by sand dunes
This lake is super shallow thanks to all of the sand.

Jasper National Park has many incredible attractions, but one of the most unique is the Jasper Lake Sand Dunes – the only sand dunes in the Canadian Rockies. 

These small sand dunes were formed during the last ice age and, over time, have been reshaped by the water and wind into what you see today. Nestled in between Jasper Lake and Talbot Lake, you’re likely to spy lots of wildlife here, such as moose, elk, and raptors.

The walk into the dunes begins a short distance from Highway 8, and it’s an easy 30-minute hike. Despite these sand dunes being super-photogenic, one of the main reasons tourists stop here is to walk through Jasper Lake. Yep, this wide and shallow lake is just a few feet deep, so you can walk for several minutes in the lake. You could probably walk longer if you wanted, as the whole lake is pretty shallow, but the water is super-cold, so you’ll likely only last a few minutes before your feet start to feel numb! 

7. Jasper

Two red chairs in the Valley of the 5 Lakes near Jasper, Canada
The Valley of the Five Lakes near Jasper is so beautiful!
Daniel takes a selfie while white water rafting in Jasper, Canada
Group selfie on our whitewater rafting tour!

The most recognizable stop on this list, Jasper, is a stunning mountain town you’ll definitely want to check out! And because of its proximity to other similar but more famous mountain towns like Banff and Whistler, it’s often compared to the two towns. Having been to all three destinations countless times over the years, Jasper is my favorite. Because it’s quieter, cheaper, and offers a more authentic Rockies vacation. 

Jasper offers an abundance of awesome activities, and as you can probably guess, because this small town is at the center of Jasper National Park, most of the best things to do here involve getting out amongst nature! 

For example, hikers will love the popular Athabasca Falls trail, which is a kilometer (0.6 miles) long. The trailhead is located a 30-minute drive from Jasper along the Icefields Parkway. The falls are gorgeous in all seasons, but winter is a great time to visit because the freezing temperatures make the falls ice over, and the whole area turns into a winter wonderland. 

Under an hour from Athabasca Falls will get you to the famed Athabasca Glacier. Here, you can join a guided tour in a specially adapted vehicle that will take you out onto the glacier. It costs $105 CAD, but book this one in advance as it tends to sell out quickly!

One of the easiest and most beautiful hikes in Jasper is the Valley of the Five Lakes trail. This hiking trail is a fairly easy loop track that can be completed in around 2 hours. Along the way, you’ll pass by, you guessed it, five stunning lakes! The lakes are bright green in color, and with the mountains as their background, it’s so picturesque!

There are a couple of summer-only activities in Jasper, and the first and most popular is to ride the Jasper SkyTram to the summit of Whistlers Mountain. The views on the ride up and down are awesome, and at the top, you will find a gift shop and restaurant. The SkyTram is open from April to October.  

While if you’re visiting in the summer and want to try something more thrilling, whitewater rafting is perfect! There’s a Jasper tour for everyone, from this budget-friendly rafting tour on moderate rapids to this family-friendly tour which takes place on less intense rapids, and even an extreme rafting tour for those adrenalin-seekers!

Staying on the topic of epic outdoor Jasper activities, if your itinerary allows, be sure to visit Maligne Lake – what I believe to be one of the best places to visit in Alberta! It’s a breathtaking, turquoise-hued lake that is surrounded by mountain peaks, glaciers, and pine trees and has to be seen to be believed. It’s located a 50-minute drive from Jasper. 

The best way to get the full Maligne Lake experience is on this top rated Maligne Lake Cruise, which gets you up close to Spirit Island, one of the most photographed spots in Western Canada. There’s so much to do at Maligne Lake, so allow a couple of hours here! If you want a sneak peek on the cruise, read our review here!

And not forgetting Jasper town, it’s definitely worth spending some time here on your stopover. The lively Connaught Street is the busiest street in town and is where you’ll find most of the restaurants (we highly recommend Jasper Pizza Place) and stores. It’s also home to a big train (you can’t miss it!) with a historic train station behind it, which still operates today. 

Related Read: Planning to head to Whistler during your time in Canada? Check out the best things to do in Whistler in the summer, or the best winter activities too!

7. Overlander Falls

Overlander Falls, BC
The beautiful Overlander Falls.

About an hour from Jasper, you may find you’re itching to stretch your legs again, well lucky then, the opportunity to hike to Overlander Falls is your next stop. It’s a short trail (about 20 minutes each way), and although the waterfall here is pretty, the winding trail through lush forest makes it a worthy stop, in my opinion! 

The trail starts not far from the Mt Robson Visitor Centre and follows down to the Fraser River, from where you can see Overlander Falls. 

If you’re keen on a longer hike, there is another Overlander Falls trailhead located on Hargreaves Road. From here, the trail is approximately 2.5 kilometers (1.5 miles) each way and follows the Fraser River.

8. Mount Robson Visitor Center

Mount Robson in Mount Robson, Canada
The stunning Mount Robson!

Your next stop is the second-oldest provincial park in BC. Mount Robson Provincial Park is a super-popular stop on the drive between Edmonton and Kamloops because not only is it home to the tallest mountain in the Canadian Rockies (yep, Mount Robson is a gigantic 3,954 meters/12,989 feet tall!), it also has plenty of scenic hiking trails and a great visitor center. 

Taking about hikes in this provincial park, the lengthy Berg Lake Trail is one of the best, but at 41.5 kilometers (26 miles) – you’ll need to allow enough time to complete it. The trail includes attractions like Berg Lake, Berg Glacier, and the Valley of a Thousand Emperor Falls. You can do it in one long day or turn it into a multi-day hike and spend the night at one of the campsites dotted along the trail. Those after a peaceful hiking experience should probably avoid it, though, as it can get very busy! 

2023 Update: Berg Lake Trail is currently closed due to flooding that damaged the trail in 2021. A portion of the trail to the Kinney Lake Campground will reopen in 2023. Check for updates here before you go!

Another great trail is the 4.5-kilometer (2.8 miles) Kinney Lake Trail, which follows along the Robson River to Kinney Lake. It’s rated as easy and should take most people approximately 2.5 hours to complete. It’s a great trail for seeing wildlife, with deer, elk, and even bears to be spotted as you walk. 

If you’re celebrating a special occasion or simply want to experience a bucket-list-worthy tour, why not book a helicopter tour to Berg Lake? Along the short 25-minute ride, you will be treated to views of Kinney Lake, Valley of a Thousand Falls, plus the Berg Lake and Mist Glaciers. This experience can be booked with Robson HeliMagic and costs $995 CAD for an entire private helicopter that holds up to 4 people.

If you’re in a rush to reach Kamloops, you can make this one a quick pitstop and just grab a coffee or a snack at the Visitor Center. It boasts a huge outdoor deck with unbelievable views of Mount Robson. 

TIP – There’s no cell service in Mount Robson Provincial Park, so if you need WiFi or make calls, you will need to do so at the Visitor Center!

If you fancy spending the night surrounded by some of the best scenery in Canada, luckily for you, 180 vehicle-accessible campsites in Mount Robson Provincial Park can be booked for stays from May to September. It’s essential to book in advance. However, there are a few first-come-first-served sites should you decide to spend the night at the last minute.

9. Rearguard Falls

Rearguard Falls in Rearguard Falls Provincial Park
How the salmon make it up this waterfall is beyond me!

About 10 minutes down the road from the Mount Robson Visitor Center is your next stop – the lovely Rearguard Falls within Rearguard Falls Provincial Park. Keep your eyes peeled for a parking lot on the side of the highway from where the trail into the falls begins! 

This trail is easy, and at just 600 meters (less than half a mile) long, you’d only need 30 minutes here. Along the trail, you’ll come to a couple of viewpoints of the falls – note the first viewpoint is the only one that’s wheelchair and stroller-accessible! 

Try to visit in August as this is when you can witness a magical natural phenomenon. During this month, chinook (the largest of the pacific salmon) return to their birthplace. They have traveled for a whopping 1,260 kilometers (783 miles) from the river’s estuary in the lower mainland of BC. And from one of the viewpoints, you may see these salmon making their last jump up Rearguard Falls and into their spawning area.

10. Valemount

Valemount Museum
The museum in Valemount is historic. Photo credit: Valemount Museum

For a small town of just 1,000 people, you’ll be surprised at how many memorable activities are available in Valemount. One of the most popular things to do here is to challenge yourself on the 45 biking trails at Valemount Bike Park, which is suitable for all skill levels. If you didn’t pack your bike, you could rent a bike from Bikes & Bites on Main Street.

The lakes surrounding the town, like Kinbasket Lake and Yellowhead Lake, are good places to fish for rainbow trout. Before fishing here, you must purchase a BC fishing license, which costs $22 CAD for a one-day pass.

If you’re a winter-lover, you may be excited to learn that a new ski resort is planned for the area – which will feature one of North America’s steepest vertical drops. 

More snowy fun can be had on Cranberry Marsh, where ice skating and snowmobiling are popular! You can access the marsh from the McKirdy Road parking lot, and this is the closest entry point to the part of the pond where the skating happens. Alternatively, opt for a guided snowmobiling tour like this one from Alpine Country Rentals

Back in Valemount town itself, be sure to pop into the Valemount Museum. Located inside a historic railway station. It has some interesting displays on Japanese Internment camps and local war heroes, and there’s even a replica of a trapper’s cabin in the basement. Admission is by donation. 

As a craft beer-lover, I always pop into Three Ranges Brewing when in town. They have over 10 craft beers on tap here and a lovely outdoor seating area for those sunny days. Another must-visit in Valemount is the Valemount Swiss Bakery on Main Street. Their freshly-baked pastries and sourdough bread displays are mouth-watering. They also serve excellent coffee!

Where to stay in Valemount

As for accommodation in Valemount, check out the family-run Twin Peaks Resort where you can choose from a log cabin or a larger family home. Some other great options include Mica Mountain Lodge & Log Cabins and Canada’s Best Value Inn, which is located on the main highway into town.  

11. River Safari

a speed boat on a river
This speed boat tour comes highly-rated. Photo Credit: River Safari

Boy, I’m really spoiling with you with these awesome stops on the drive from Edmonton and Kamloops, aren’t I?! And this next one is one of my favorites – a thrilling tour through Grizzly Bear Valley! 

One for the wildlife-lovers and adventure-seekers, the River Safari is actually a choice of two tours through the only inland temperate rainforest in the world. You can pick from a jeep or boat tour, both of which cover 12 kilometers (7.5 miles) through Grizzly Bear Valley. And, of course, you’re likely to see grizzlies and other wildlife like deer, elk, and moose along the way. 

To get to the starting point for this tour, watch out for the giant bear billboard on Highway 5 and turn off there!

Boats depart every hour during their operating season (which usually begins in May). Booking your tickets online in advance is best, but they also accept walk-ins! 

I should also add that one of the most unique restaurants in BC is located here, too, serving up dishes made with mostly local ingredients and built on a huge, floating dock looking over the river – The Forest Table is a dining experience you shouldn’t miss! 

12. Clearwater/Wells Gray Provincial Park

Spahats Creek Falls as seen from the viewing platform in Wells Gray Provincial Park, Canada
Sphatts Creek Falls in Wells Gray Provincial Park!

Your final stop before you reach Kamloops is a goodie! Clearwater is the place for lovers of the outdoors, as it’s home to plenty of rivers, forests, and of course, waterfalls! 

Get your heart pounding and wake yourself up after all that driving with this whitewater rafting tour on the Clearwater River. This river is an ideal whitewater destination as it’s full of rapids and churning waves. All safety equipment and an experienced guide are provided to guide you through this white-knuckle activity.

We recommend booking this tour for a unique way to explore Wells Gray Park and take on some Class III rapids along the way. With names like The Wall and Tsunami, you just know these rapids are going to get your adrenaline pumping! This experience costs $129 CAD and lasts 4 hours.

For something a little more low-key, check out the Clearwater Farmers Market, which is held every Saturday morning next to the Dutch Lake Community Center between May and October. You’ll find everything here – from coffee to fresh fruit and veggies to unique handmade souvenirs!

Not far from Clearwater is “Canada’s Waterfall Park” aka Wells Gray Provincial Park, which, yep, you guessed right, is home to heaps of stunning waterfalls. A whopping 41 named falls in total, and many more unnamed falls are hidden in the thick forest. 

To get there, you’ll need to detour off of Highway 5, but we promise it’s worth it! If you’re on a tight schedule, there are a few waterfalls that you can’t miss out on seeing. The below three falls are my favorites – 

  • Spahats Creek Falls – A breathtaking waterfall that stands 61 meters (250 feet) tall. It’s a straight drop to the bottom, and the water cascades down from a break in the rocks.
  • Dawson Falls – At 90 meters (295 feet) across, it’s one of the widest waterfalls in the park and one of the most scenic, too, as the water from the falls gushes into the fast-flowing Murtle River. You will come to two different viewpoints on the trail – so make the time to snap some photos of both!
  • Helmcken Falls – The crowning jewel of all the Wells Gray Provincial Park waterfalls! Helmcken Falls is the fourth biggest waterfall in the country, with water crashing down an impressive 295-meter (462 feet) drop. The viewing platform here juts out over the canyon, giving an almost panoramic view.

13. Kamloops

Bailey walks a bridge in Kamloops downtown
Downtown Kamloops!

Yay! It’s time to celebrate as you’ve reached your final destination! Kamloops is one of BC’s hidden gems, and despite being a relatively large city with an abundance of outdoorsy activities on offer, it tends to be overlooked on many Canadian itineraries in favor of more “famous” cities like Vancouver or Calgary! 

I think that’s a real shame as there are so many things to do in Kamloops, from wine tasting to golfing to skiing at the popular Sun Peaks ski resort in the winter. 

It’s also an epic hiking destination, and the trails here feature a variety of landscapes, including wide-open grasslands, sandstone canyons, and unique ponderosa pine forests. Some of the most popular hikes in Kamloops include the Tom Moore Trail and the nearby Bridal Veils Falls, and both are rated as moderate. While I think the best place to go if you want to see a variety of scenery in one area is the Kenna Cartwright Nature Park. You can choose from no less than 40 km (25 miles) of trails in this park. Many of which feature stop-you-in-your-tracks views of the Thompson Valley and Kamloops. 

Speaking of Thompson Valley, there are four lovely wineries here. So, if you’re a fan of good wine and even better views, why not spend a relaxing afternoon in the area? A few of my favorite wineries here are Privato Winery & Vineyard and Monte Creek Winery.

Another great activity, especially with local Kamloopsians, is kayaking or SUPing on a lake. There are over 100 lakes within an hour’s drive of Kamloops, so you’re not short on options. One of the most famous lakes in Kamloops is the easy-to-remember Kamloops Lake, where you can see old stone train bridges and tunnels, rock bluffs, and maybe even an eagle’s nest!

While the perfect family-friendly activity here is the BC Wildlife Park, a rescue and rehabilitation center that’s home to over 60 different animals, including Clover the Spirit Bear, the only Kermode Bear in captivity in the world. You could spend the whole day here with the kids if you wanted, as there’s also a splash park, playground, and mini-train to keep them occupied. Entrance to BC Wildlife Park costs $18.85 CAD per adult and you can buy a skip-the-line ticket here

Where to Stay in Kamloops

the indoor pool at The Thompson Hotel in Kamloops, BC
The indoor pool at The Thompson Hotel is great all year round!

When it comes to where to stay while in Kamloops, there are tons of accommodation options depending on your budget and what type of experience you’re looking for. Here are some of our favorites:

Rodeway Inn & Suites – Budget Hotel

The Rodeway Inn and Suites features pet-friendly rooms, a complimentary continental breakfast, and on-site laundry for guests to use. It’s located right off Highway 1 and is a short drive away from the Aberdeen Mall, Aberdeen Hills Golf Links, and many of Kamloops’s other popular attractions.

A standard room starts at around $128 CAD during the busy summer months. You can book online and check availability on Booking.com.

The Thompson Hotel – Mid-Range Hotel

The Thompson Hotel is a beautiful hotel in the heart of downtown Kamloops and offers many amenities like an indoor pool and hot tub, two on-site restaurants, and complimentary bike rentals. It’s located within walking distance of the beach, dozens of restaurants, nightlife, and Riverside Park, so it’s a great starting point for everything you’ll want to see and do in Kamloops.

Rooms here can be as much as $300 in peak seasons, but you can find great deals on Booking.com especially in the cooler months more in the $150 CAD range.

Prestige Kamloops Hotel – Luxury Hotel

The Prestige Kamloops Hotel is the perfect choice for those looking for a luxurious and relaxing stay. This hotel has an on-site pool, fitness center, hot tub, and even a waterslide, as well as a brand-new restaurant and office space. It’s centrally located near all the best Kamloops has to offer, so you’ll be within walking distance to shopping, restaurants, and parks.

Rooms here range from $250-350 CAD in the summer, but prices drop significantly in the fall and winter. You can check the prices for your dates and book with Booking.com.

Related Read: Another awesome road trip you can do from Kamloops is the drive from Kamloops to Whistler – it’s so scenic!

Renting a Car in Alberta

A car drives along the Icefields Parkway
The drive is mesmerizing!

If you’re arriving in Alberta via plane then I can’t recommend getting a rental car enough. Canada is a large country and traveling between cities and even just getting out to some of the best places to visit in Alberta requires transport. Although you can use public transport, on some occasions, it means your trip will not only require more time but more planning.

Renting a car will definitely make exploring all of the fun things to see and do in Alberta easier.

Car rental in Canada isn’t super cheap, but it isn’t overly expensive either, especially if you get a budget car. The cheapest car with pickup and drop-off in different locations is around $100 CAD per day. The price does vary though depending on the time of year and the type of car that you rent. For car rentals, I use the website DiscoverCars.com. It’s a search engine with lots of deals with good customer service. In fact, I’ve used them all over the world including in Chile, New Zealand, and Australia.

Another popular option is to rent a campervan or motorhome (only for the brave in winter.) Using Motorhome Republic you can search hundreds of deals across multiple companies to pick a great vehicle and the cheapest price. Having a motorhome is a stunning way to see Canada, and using crown land and campsites, you can often camp for free or very cheap in the most beautiful places imaginable!

Thanks for reading!

Bailey and Daniel take a selfie at Kamloops Lake View Point 
Thanks for reading!

We’ve reached the end of our epic list of the best stops on the drive from Edmonton to Kamloops! I sincerely hope it’s given you heaps of inspiration for your upcoming trip to one of my favorite (and most underrated) parts of Canada. It has it all from majestic waterfalls, thrilling adrenalin-pumping attractions, touristic mountain towns, and much more! I’m so excited for you to experience it!

Don’t forget to check out some of our other road trip posts before you leave:

13 BEST Stops on the Drive from Kamloops to Jasper

19 BEST Stops on the Drive from Edmonton to Kelowna

23 BEST Stops on the Drive from Edmonton to Lake Louise

16 BEST Stops on the Drive from Edmonton to Canmore