As a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most beautiful places to visit in Canada, there are plenty of amazing places to stay in Banff National Park. Indeed, there are even famous hotels such as the Banff Springs Hotel, the Castle in the Rockies, but there is undeniably something special about renting a cabin in Banff.
There’s something in our DNA that calls us to stay in a log cabin when we visit a mountain forest setting. The rugged wilderness setting of Banff National Park, in the heart of the Canadian Rockies, is the perfect setting for staying in a cabin. There isn’t an abundance of Banff cabins for rent, but the selection available is excellent. Read on to discover our choices for the best Banff chalets cabins.
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Why You Should Rent a Cabin in Banff
Banff cabins for rent are a great way to enjoy one of Canada’s most scenic and popular national parks. Banff cabin rentals come in many shapes and sizes, from single-person rentals to units large enough for entire families. In addition, renting a cozy cabin in Banff offers greater privacy and flexibility compared to staying at a hotel.
On a per-night basis, cabins may be more affordable than regular hotels, especially with the prices at some of Banff’s best luxury hotels. This reflects the fact that cabins typically don’t need a large staff on the payroll.
For your convenience, Banff cabins usually come with a complete set of appliances and amenities, including dining areas, kitchens with all the trimmings, laundry facilities, and multiple bathrooms. Banff chalets with multiple rooms also have significantly more privacy, which hotels frequently lack.
Finally, cabin accommodations tend to offer better scenery than hotels. You may see trees, snow and/or mountains on all sides, rather than walls that lead into other guest rooms or sterile corridors.
You should be aware that many cabins in Banff for rent don’t accept short-stay bookings. Anyone staying longer than a few days should take a close look at these cozy cabins in Banff National Park and the surrounding areas.
The 15 Best Banff Cabins and Chalets
Here are our picks for the top Banff chalet and cabin rentals throughout Canada’s oldest and best national park.
Moraine Lake Lodge is one of the most luxurious cabins for rent in Banff. Set right along the world-famous shores of Moraine Lake itself, this property exclusively offers 375 square foot cabin rentals, each with a single large bed. Cabins include comfortable soaking tubs and private balconies, while dining options include casual deli-style fare and fine regional cuisine for breakfast and dinner.
Moraine Lake Lodge is quite luxurious, notably featuring custom, hand-crafted log furniture in each cabin. This is a good Banff cabin rental if you want to get away from everything, as there’s no television or TVs, and the internet is only available in the main lobby.
If you like heading out onto the water, there’s more to love with the on-site boat launch going straight into Moraine Lake. Moraine Lake Lodge can also accommodate many special diet menus with sufficient advance notice.
For new visitors to Banff National Park, it is wise to educate yourself on how to get to Moraine Lake. Being one of the top attractions in the park (with a relatively small parking lot), Moraine Lake can be near impossible to get to, especially in peak summer season. A stay at the Moraine Lake Lodge is a wonderful way to avoid the hassles of getting to Moraine Lake and is destined to be a highlight of your trip!
Cabin amenities at the Baker Creek Mountain Resort vary slightly by design but generally include real wood construction, high ceilings, queen size beds in the main rooms, and a wood-burning stove or fireplace.
The Baker Creek Mountain Resort strikes an excellent balance of having a remote wilderness location, yet central and close to many of Banff National Park’s top attractions, including Lake Louise.
The Baker Creek Mountain Resort also appears on our list of the top places to stay near Lake Louise. Their cozy Banff cabin rentals are the clear highlight at this Banff National Park resort, but they also offer several suites in a larger lodge if you end up more interested in that type of experience.
3. Skoki Lodge
Skoki Lodge is a historic site, and one of the more unique cabins for rent in Banff. As a rare Banff backcountry lodge, Skoki Lodge is about eleven kilometers away from the Lake Louise area. Three cabins provide separated stays away from the central lodge facility.
Each Skoki Lodge cabin has a unique configuration. The Riverside lodge has a Queen-size bed, a bunk bed, and a single bed to sleep up to five people. The Wolverine lodge has three single beds and a bunk bed to sleep five, while the Honeymoon lodge has a single King bed and sleeps two. Food is casual at Skoki Lodge, with all meals available in a buffet style.
Heating at the Skoki Lodge comes mainly from propane gas stoves, though kerosene lamps and candles provide different light sources than most cabins. Visiting this backcountry lodge lodge is very different from going to most other Banff cabins, so the Skoki Lodge helpfully provide guides for Winter and Summer visitors.
Castle Mountain Chalet has a very central location within Banff National Park, located on the Bow Valley Parkway halfway in-between the Town of Banff and Lake Louise, being roughly 30 km from each. These cozy Banff cabins are also mere minutes away from the Castle Mountain Lookout trail, one of our favorite scenic hikes in Banff National Park.
Accommodations at the Castle Mountain Chalets include several different lodges and units, with most options including room for at least four guests, including numerous pet-friendly options.
The Superior Chalet is easily one of the best cabins in Banff, featuring a fireplace, a full kitchen and natural wood finishings.
If you’re looking for a little more space, Castle Mountain Chalets’ one-bedroom option increases your room to 850 square feet and comes with a 42-inch television, a full kitchen and gorgeous views of the Canadian Rockies. The spa bath in the 1-bedroom chalet is perfect for romantic getaways, and makes the Castle Mountain Chalets’ one of the rare places to stay in Banff with a private hot tub.
Castle Mountain Chalet is particularly gorgeous if you are visiting Banff in winter when it’s one of the most beautiful Banff log cabin rentals.
Storm Mountain Lodge is another set of gorgeous Banff cabins, this time set close to a wildlife corridor at the base of the majestic Storm Mountain. The Storm Mountain Lodge is also a great option if you’re looking to disconnect from the world because the entire location has minimal electricity and doesn’t have television, wireless internet, refrigerators or other modern amenities.
Having such a low-powered setup is unusual in modern cabins, but it gives Storm Mountain Lodge a distinctly different feel than most other Banff chalets on this list. To balance things out, they serve meals in the main lodge’s dining room and lounge areas, with take-out available if you want to eat in your cozy cabin instead.
If it’s just the two of you, have a romantic weekend in a traditional log or pine cabin, but if you want to bring your dog, as one of the pet-friendly places to stay in Banff, you may bring Fido for a small extra fee.
For those visiting Banff with kids, family-size cabins that sleep four are also available.
If you are visiting Banff National Park in the fall, the Storm Mountain Lodge is a convenient location for the Arnica Lake hike, one of our favorite larch tree hikes in Banff. Despite it’s beautiful, wild location, the Storm Mountain Lodge is only 20 minutes from Lake Louise.
The famous Johnston Canyon trail is one of the most popular easy hiking trails in Banff National Park. Despite two large parking lots, it can be difficult to find a parking spot for the Johnston Canyon hike. Similar to the strategy behind a stay at the Moraine Lake Lodge, staying at the cozy Johnston Canyon Bungalows is a fun, yet clever way to avoid the hassles of parking at one of the top things to do in Banff National Park.
The Johnston Canyon Lodge & Bungalows are located on the Bow Valley Parkway halfway between the Town of Banff and Lake Louise. Due to the dense forest and reduced traffic, the Bow Valley Parkway is one of the best places in Banff to spot wildlife.
An ideal place to stay in Banff, the Johnston Canyon Lodge and Bungalows was named the 2019 Resort of the Year by the Travel & Hospitality Awards. Guests can choose from 42 heritage bungalows nestled in the woods near the Johnston Canyon trailhead. For a romantic getaway, look for a cabin with a wood burning fireplace.
We spent a weekend at the Johnston Canyon cabins a few years ago and we loved it. Getting up and enjoying the Johnston Canyon hike before the crowds arrived was a rare and special experience.
Our main focus at this Lake Louise resort is the bungalows, which are separate from Paradise Lodge’s larger hotel section. Originally built in the 1930s, these bungalow cabin rentals in Banff have modern renovations. The cabins are available in four different floor plans, each named after a historical figure.
The Feuz and Wilson cabins are the smaller options, sleeping two adults in a queen-size bed. The Feuz is bigger and has an expansive deck area, while the Wilson layout is smaller but keeps everything closer together and has a larger kitchen area.
The Peyto and Cooper cabin designs can fit two adults and two children each. They’re quite similar inside, but the Cooper design has a much larger deck to enjoy.
Set in Yoho National Park, just west of Banff, Emerald Lake Lodge is one of the larger and more luxurious locations you can rent. Emerald Lake Lodge also has more cabins in Banff for rent than most other locations, with 24 structures in various configurations atop a secluded island.
The standard rooms at the Emerald Lake Lodge are suitable for two guests and feature a wood-burning stone fireplace and a luxurious sitting area. Despite the name, the Lodge Rooms are separate structures, not individual rooms in a bigger building. Some of these rooms include pet-friendly accommodations, so ask about those if you are looking for a pet-friendly cabin rental.
The Lake View rooms are a step up from the standard lodge room. Each has a single King-size bed, plus a larger private balcony that overlooks the lake area. The Emerald Suites come in studio or one-bedroom configurations, and while they change to a Queen-size bed, they also offer even more sitting room.
If you’re looking for luxury, the Point Cabin at the Emerald Lake Lodge is one of the most luxurious cabins near Banff. It includes a king-size bed, one and a half bathrooms, and a dining area for preparing meals.
International visitors typically seek out cabins in Banff National Park, but locals have a little secret… Kananaskis Country is another Alberta mountain park which borders Banff National Park, with equally stunning mountain scenery.
Mount Engadine Lodge is a wonderful place to stay in Kananaskis Country if you are looking to get away from it all. It’s just minutes away from the Rummel Lake hike, giving easy access to one of our favorite Kananaskis year-round hikes.
Mount Engadine Lodge offers two-bedroom chalets that fit up to four adults and one child. This makes it one of the best family-size cabin rentals near Banff, and the 494 square feet of space are enough to ensure everyone has enough room.
The chalets have hot showers, great views of a local meadow, and a gas fireplace that helps heat the structure. Kids can take advantage of entertainment like books, DVDs, and board games, while a patio offers plenty of room to stretch and look around.
Luggage and ski storage are available at the front desk of Mount Engadine Lodge. Meals are fully included, and the lodge can accommodate most dietary restrictions with prior notice. A sauna and massage parlor are also available on-site if you’re feeling a little stiff after a day on the slopes. Nordic skiing is particularly easy here, and you can go ski straight up to the doors of your cozy Kananaskis cabin.
Banff Trail Riders isn’t the first name most people associate with cabin rentals, but this horseback riding company has several cottages in Banff that are worth the visit. Also, unlike Skoki Lodge, these backcountry lodges are more accessible because you access them while horseback riding.
The Sundance Lodge is the larger of the two Banff Trail Riders locations. A rare high-capacity cabin, the Sundance Lodge has ten rooms and space for up to 34 guests at once. Food is included, with chefs offering a rotating seasonal menu of delicious meals. You can rent the entire Sundance Lodge for personal use, or choose to share it with other groups, which is a rarity among Banff cabin rentals.
The other property is the Halfway Lodge, which sleeps up to 16 guests in four bedrooms. It also has a rather interesting history, including a renovation adding a second floor in 1967 after a bear came down through the roof. All meals are included, though there’s no internet access available at this lodge.
The Halfway Lodge is best experienced on a longer trip, as it usually takes two days of horseback riding to access it. Both the Sundance Lodge and the Halfway Lodge are significantly further away from the Town of Banff than most other log cabins, so they offer a quiet and peaceful experience matched by few other lodges in the national park.
The Juniper Hotel is a popular Banff hotel near the Norquay Ski Resort with plenty of spacious suites. In addition to the hotel rooms, it also has several cabins for rent if you’re looking for something more private and comfortable. Each cabin is close to the edge of the property, giving you the feeling of being in nature.
The Banff cabins for rent at the Juniper Hotel have one queen bed in the main room, with an upstairs loft adding another two double-size beds. They also have full-size kitchens, comfortable living areas, and wireless internet. Although not as log-themed as some other Banff cabins, they’re spacious, and the lofts offer great views straight down through the main windows.
The on-site Juniper Bistro is also worth visiting, as it’s one of the area’s award-winning eateries. Open daily, the bistro’s menu includes a selection of alpine-inspired food and drinks, including burgers and salads made with fresh, local ingredients. With each access to nearby entertainment, Juniper Hotel is an outstanding Banff cabin for rent.
While you’re in the area, check out the native plant gardens and the indigenous art collection. These offer experiences you won’t find at most other Banff cabins for rent.
12. Banff Log Cabin
As its name implies, Banff Log Cabin is a comfortable log guesthouse offering both bed and breakfast. Located on a quiet residential street in the Town of Banff, you are still very close to the action. The world-famous Banff Springs Hotel is just a 4 minute walk away, while the shops and restaurants of downtown Banff are just 10 minutes away.
An on-site iron stove offers gas heating for the whole log cabin, controlled by a thermostat for your convenience. A swiveling flat screen television provides more entertainment, while the bathroom’s full-size tub offers plenty of opportunities for soaking after a day of fun in Banff National Park.
Local regulations prevent full kitchens, but the Banff Log Cabin does offer a bar-style fridge, a small microwave, and a kettle. More food is available in nearby Banff, where there are plenty of high-quality restaurants. Breakfast is delivered each morning and includes muffins, fruit salads, and your choice of coffee or tea with juice.
The Banff Log Cabin has a genuine log-cabin theme to it, and it offers a delightful rustic experience mixed with a few modern comforts and luxuries for an outstanding experience. This cozy Banff cabin only sleeps 2, making it perfect for a romantic weekend.
13. Chateau Elise
Notable enough to appear on HGTV as a top luxury retreat, Chateau Elise is an outstanding chateau rental for large groups located in Canmore, a charming mountain town located just outside the gates of Banff National Park. This amazing chateau is about 4,300 square feet and has four bedrooms, sleeping a maximum of eight guests.
Chateau Elise features open concept living, with a fully-furnished gourmet kitchen and a separate bar area for making drinks and entertaining. Art within the chalet includes antique furniture and genuine native pieces, with custom lighting and an authentic wood-burning fireplace. Together, these make it a top Canmore cabin rental for visitors to Banff.
Despite its size, the chateau remains cozy, especially when you have the time to sink into the large hot tub and enjoy the spectacular views of the local mountain range. The chateau itself is set within the upscale Silvertip Resort area, close to a golf course and yet comfortably private.
Despite its luxury, Chateau Elise is competitively priced for its size and the number of people that can sleep within. If you have a large family (or plan on a big gathering), this is one of the top Canmore cabin rentals to consider.
The Banff Boutique Inn is another mixed-residence property offering some of the best Banff National Park cabins. While not actually a Banff cabin, the Deluxe King Rooms offer a cabin-style rental, offering modern and luxurious furnishings in separate structures. Each of these rooms has a television, wireless internet, full hotel luxuries, and your choice of a King or Queen bed.
The cozy Deluxe King Rooms also have a large seating area, a personal covered porch, an extra-large soaking tub, and a private external entrance separate from other hotel guests. Banff National Park cabin rentals vary widely in location, but as this property is just a five-minute walk from downtown, it has outstanding access despite its private wooded location.
Banff Boutique Inn works better for extended stays than most Banff cabins rentals. They have a full kitchen access, plus bike storage and ski storage.
For history buffs, the Banff Boutique Inn is less than 1 km away from the Cave and Basin – the birthplace of Banff National Park. If you are visiting Banff on a budget, you’ll be interested to know that the Banff Boutique Inn made our list of the best affordable places to stay in Banff.
Tunnel Mountain Resort is another excellent option for Banff cabin rentals. You’ll love the wild forest setting on the lower slopes of its namesake mountain, but in reality you are just minutes from Banff Avenue.
The highlight of the Tunnel Mountain Resort is the large indoor pool, a rarity among cabins and chalets this size. Large windows offer panoramic views of the nearby Canadian Rocky Mountains, while the trailhead for the popular Tunnel Mountain hike is just minutes away.
Tunnel Mountain Resort has several options available if you want to spend the night, but the best choice for cabin accommodations is their Mountain Cottage. This cottage offers 650 square feet of space and sleeps up to six adults, which is larger than most other Banff chalet rentals. The Mountain Cottage also has some separation from the larger main lodge.
One of our best Banff resorts for visiting without a car, the Tunnel Mountain Resort’s location is relatively private, with plenty of trees around to help maintain the natural feel. However, it’s much closer to the town center than most other cabin accommodations, so this location is worth considering if you want to get the feel of a private mountain retreat without driving twenty or thirty kilometers out of town to find it.
A Fun Alternative to Renting a Banff Cabin
If you are looking for a Banff cabin rental as you are looking for a more remote, natural setting for your Banff accommodation, why not check out the Banff oTENTik experience? Your only opportunity to go glamping in Banff, a stay in an oTENTik in Banff is guaranteed to be an adventure!
Where to Stay in Banff
Dan Brewer, a life-long Alberta resident, calls Canmore home along with his wife and two kids. He is the co-owner of Travel Banff Canada, where he gets to share his passion for the Canadian Rocky Mountains. Dan, along with his family, love being outdoors doing one of the many activities they enjoy in the mountains: hiking, mountain biking, paddleboarding, skiing, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing.
When he's not in Canmore enjoying one of his favourite local hikes, you can find him hoping on a plane to explore a new country with his family or working on one of their other two travel sites: Family Can Travel and Baby Can Travel.