Introduction to Jasper
Located in the Canadian Rockies in the province of Alberta and within the Athabasca River Valley, Jasper is one of the mountain towns along with Banff, which is 4 hours' drive south. The town of Jasper is also located within Jasper National Park, which was established in 1907 and is the largest national park in the Rockies. The population is a relatively small 5,250, which is definitely outnumbered by the 1.8 million tourists who visit the national park each year.
Everything you may have heard about Jasper is true - it is hard to overexaggerate about the perfection of the area's spectacular mountain range. From afar, the landscape looks peaceful, however an abundance of wildlife thrives under the thick forest canopy and water crashes down from the peaks to fuel major river systems such as the North Saskatchewan and Athabasca systems. Still, Jasper is a quieter locale to the party town of Banff and offers a retreat and tranquility to enjoy and experience the region's stunning natural beauty.
Native to Jasper National Park are the elusive grizzly bear, black bears, bouncing white-tailed deer, bighorn sheep, beavers and many other uniquely Canadian animals. A trip to Jasper is a package deal and the neighbouring wildlife lives harmoniously nearby. As Banff's smaller sibling, Jasper balances commercialisation delicately with luxurious comforts such as rooms with a mountain view and top-notch meals. In winter, it's all about winter sports and dog sledding, and come the summer thaw, hike or kayak around the lakes, traverse the canyons and check out the waterfalls in this beautiful area of Canada.
For more must-dos in Jasper, check out our things to do page and start planning your Jasper holiday.