I learned long ago not to have a Christmas bucket list. I get my tree and decorations up early, because it brings me so much joy, I make sure to take photos of the kids in their matching Christmas jammies, but other than that, whatever else happens is bonus. Other than Jonathan’s first Christmas, I haven’t wanted the pressure of going to the mall with all 3 kids and working around school and hockey schedules to make photos with Santa happen. I love baking, but if I don’t feel like baking all my favourite Christmas goodies, I won’t force myself to. Bucket lists make me anxious and suck the joy right out of the experience for me.
When I was contacted by Banff Jasper Collection to partake in their Mountaintop Christmas event at the Banff Gondola on Sulphur Mountain, I was absolutely thrilled that I found a date that worked with our busy schedules. A big bonus was that it incorporated so much of what I love to do with my family and we made a little getaway out of it.
Book Tickets for the Banff Gondola
I can see how this could easily become a new family tradition with so much fun to experience in one day. The Banff Gondola itself was a wonderful experience for the kids. The line moved fast and if you buy your tickets online, you save 10% and youth ride free with each adult ticket purchase, plus kids 5 and under are free. Alberta locals, you get a discount at only $49/ticket + the 10% you save if you pre-book and buy online.
Mountaintop Christmas is included with the price of your Banff Gondola ticket and it includes so many family-fun activities such as…
Decorating (and eating) cookies.
Fantastic photo opps on the rooftop deck with a 360º view from the summit of Sulphur Mountain at 7500 feet.
And warming up by the fire!
There’s kids gift-making, and when we were there it was a picture frame that your kids could decorate. Braden loved this, and while he did this, Ethan and Jonathan played some games with their dad in the interactive centre.
Disney’s Christmas short film “Prep & Landing” screens every 30 minutes from 10:00 – 3:00 on the weekends. And, best of all, we got a wonderful family photo with Santa.
Be warned, I assumed the photos were free, but the photographer will give you a number and when you get off the gondola in the gift shop, you give the number to the cashier and it costs $25 for a 5×7 print and more for an 8×10. Photos mean a lot to me and I scanned it when I got home, so I didn’t feel too bad about paying that for a great photo that we’re all in.
There are more events the closer you get to Christmas, so please check out the full line of events here. Mountaintop Christmas in Banff started November 17 this year and it runs every weekend up to, and including December 23.
Disclosure: We were provided one night’s accommodation at the Elk + Avenue Hotel and were provided with our Banff Gondola tickets for free courtesy of Pursuit Collective. Thank you so much for hosting us, we had a wonderful time. No further compensation was received, and all views and opinions on this blog are my own.