Being a parent is a wonderful thing. Sometimes, however, it can make you forget that ‘parent’ is not your only role.
A quick weekend getaway might be just the thing to make you and your other half whole again. Whether you take just one day to get away or the whole weekend, you’ll get a chance to unwind and relax, as a couple.
If you only have one day, head to Lake Louise. It’s only two hours from Calgary, but it seems like you’re a world away. Regardless of what the weather is like at home at this time of year, Lake Louise is a winter wonderland. Trees are laden with inches of snow; and the ground is flawlessly concealed with white flakes, only interrupted by the odd animal footprint. Even with just one day to get away, you’ll find that it’s enough to forget the hustle and bustle of everyday life and de-stress.
So what does a couple do with just one day to unwind? Ice-skating! It is one of those activities that adults tend to forget about, or typically think of as something for children to do. So, why not bring out your inner kid? Enjoy the playfulness of skating while taking in the stunning surroundings at Lake Louise: Victoria Glacier, snow capped peaks, and a fairy-tale like ice castle. No skates? No problem – you can rent them right in the Chateau. When you’re done skating (or when your feet are frozen), warm up inside while sipping on a hot chocolate or coffee at the Chateau Deli.
If you can get away for a whole weekend, be sure to make the most of it. Take advantage of the spa and room service options your hotel offers, and use the time you have to truly relish in the company of one another.
When thinking of being outside in the mountains during the winter, toques and mittens come to mind before swimsuits. There is, however, something amazing about bathing in the hot pools of mineral springs while looking out at massive snow banks and icicles. The Banff Upper Hot Springs (visit hotsprings.ca for more information) is fed by natural hot springs first discovered in 1884, and it has been famous ever since. There is also an in-house spa that offers a variety of treatments, including facials and massages.
Afterward, if it’s not too cold, take a romantic sleigh ride for two. You’ll be pulled in a horse drawn sleigh and given an assortment of Bernard Callebaut chocolates, liqueurs, and kept warm under a buffalo robe (visit horseback.com/sleigh.html for rates, reservations). A quick vacation, whether it’s just one day or a whole weekend, is a great way to relax, unwind and remind you that you’re not just a parent. When you get home, you’ll feel less stressed out, and be more involved in your relationship – something that many people forget to do once they become parents.
If you’re on a budget, try the Banff Aspen Lodge (banffaspenlodge.com, $116 to $148 per night). Conveniently located on Banff Avenue, the hotel is just a few minutes walk to shopping, restaurants and galleries.
Feel like indulging? Stay at the famed Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel (fairmont.com/banffsprings, $379 to $969 per night). This hotel, just minutes from downtown Banff, offers incredible views, dining and a world-class spa.
Keep in mind, by booking your hotel on a travel website (like expedia.ca or travelocity.ca) you can save up to, and in excess of, $100. So, do your research before making any final decisions.