A Guide to the Canmore Folk Festival: Must-Knows and Must-Brings

Written by
Staff Writer
May 14, 2024
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First Published on

Welcome to the Canmore Folk Festival – where music enthusiasts, nature lovers, and culture seekers unite for a weekend of great tunes and breathtaking scenery. If you're gearing up for this iconic summer event, you're in for a treat. But before you embark, let's make sure you're fully equipped with all the essentials and insider tips to make the most out of your experience.

Photo Credit: Andrew Barron | andrewbarron.com

The Canmore Folk Festival

A celebration of music, community, and natural beauty of the Canadian Rockies. From folk to blues, indie to bluegrass, the lineup at the Canmore Folk Festival is as diverse as it is captivating. Whether you're a die-hard fan of established artists or eager to discover emerging talents, there's something for everyone to groove to.

Check out this link to see the lineup for 2024.

2024 Festival Dates & Times

The Canmore Folk Festival is held every Heritage Day long weekend! This year it falls on August 3-5th. The festival is located at Centennial Park, and parking is limited so ensure that you plan ahead. You can find more transportation/parking information here

Opening & Closing Times

Festival Friday: Free! Community Concert. Times TBD

Saturday: 9:30 a.m. - 10:45 p.m.

Sunday: 9:30 a.m. - 10:45 p.m.

Monday: 9:30 a.m. - 10:30 p.m.

To purchase tickets, click here to be redirected to Canmore Folk Festival.

Photo Credit: Craig Douce |  banffcanmorephoto.com

Must-Brings: Packing Essentials

Now, let's talk about packing. The key to a seamless festival experience is being prepared. Here's a checklist of must-brings to ensure you're ready to rock:

  1. Comfortable Clothing: Dress in layers to accommodate the unpredictable mountain weather – think breathable fabrics, a light jacket, and sturdy footwear for exploring the festival grounds.
  2. Sun Protection: Don't forget your sunscreen, sunglasses, and a wide-brimmed hat to shield yourself from the sun's rays during outdoor performances.
  3. Hydration: Stay hydrated throughout the day by bringing a reusable water bottle that's empty upon entry.
  4. Picnic Essentials: You’re allowed to bring in a tarp or blanket but the size is limited to 6x8. Festival chairs are also allowed but must be limited to 24 inches high. No tents are allowed.
  5. Cash: While some vendors may accept card payments, it's always handy to have some cash on hand for quick purchases and tipping your favorite artists.

Things to Do in and Around Canmore

Beyond the festival grounds, Canmore offers a plethora of activities to complement your Folk Festival experience. Here are a few must-do's:


Canmore is a hiker's paradise, boasting an extensive network of trails suitable for all skill levels. Whether you're a seasoned trekker or a casual stroller, you'll find trails that cater to your preferences. Some popular options include the Grassi Lakes Trail, Ha Ling Peak Trail, and the iconic Three Sisters Mountain Trail.


Hop on a bike and explore the breathtaking landscapes surrounding Canmore. The town offers a variety of cycling routes, from leisurely paths along the Bow River to challenging mountain trails in nearby parks. Rent a bike from Gear Up Sports and embark on an adventure through nature's playground. If you’re looking to take on the infamous Legacy Trail, check out out blog post: Your Ultimate Guide to Biking the Legacy Trail from Canmore to Banff.

Complimentary Bike Rentals from Basecamp Lodge Canmore

Exploring Downtown

Take a leisurely stroll through Canmore's picturesque downtown area, where you'll find a charming mix of boutiques, art galleries, and eateries.Swing by Electric Wolf Cafe for a taste of artisan sandwiches and convenient grab-and-go style food and coffees! Browse unique artisan shops, sample local delicacies at cozy cafes, and soak in the laid-back atmosphere of this mountain town.

Wildlife Viewing

Keep your eyes peeled for Canmore's abundant wildlife, including elk, deer, and various bird species. Head to nearby wildlife corridors such as the Bow Valley Wildland Provincial Park or the Banff National Park to increase your chances of spotting these majestic creatures in their natural habitat.

Rock Climbing

For adrenaline junkies, Canmore offers world-class rock climbing opportunities against the stunning backdrop of the Rocky Mountains. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced climber, you'll find routes to challenge and inspire you. Popular climbing areas include Grassi Lakes, Heart Creek, and the East End of Rundle (EEOR).

Rock Climbing - East End of Rundle in Canmore, Alberta


Tee off amidst breathtaking mountain vistas at one of Canmore's scenic golf courses. With several championship courses to choose from, including Silvertip Resort and Stewart Creek Golf & Country Club, golf enthusiasts are spoiled for choice in this mountain paradise.

Photo Credit: SIlvertip Resort

Relaxing at Hot Springs

Unwind after a day of adventure by soaking in the soothing waters of the nearby hot springs. Banff Upper Hot Springs and the Kananaskis Nordic Spa offer rejuvenating spa experiences surrounded by stunning alpine scenery, providing the perfect way to pamper yourself and recharge your batteries.

Where to Stay

When it comes to accommodations, Basecamp Properties stands out as the premiere choice for festival-goers seeking comfort and convenience. Located within close proximity to the festival grounds, Basecamp Properties offers a range of lodging options to suit every preference and budget. Be sure to join our Explorer's Club for 15% cashback rewards on direct bookings and subscribe to our email list for exclusive updates and deals.

Photo Credit: Brayden Tozer - Basecamp Resorts Canmore

Basecamp Resorts Canmore: Rooftop Hot Tub Views

  • Unwind with stunning mountain views from the rooftop hot tub at Basecamp Resorts Canmore, blending comfort and convenience with a touch of natural beauty. These spacious units feature full kitchens and multiple bedrooms, so there’s room for the entire crew.

Lamphouse: Main Street Accessibility

  • Enjoy motel-style living with endless views, conveniently located on Canmore's main street, an easy walk to the festival grounds. 

Northwinds Hotel: Budget-Friendly Lodging

  • Accommodating groups of 2 to 6 people, just a short stroll from Centennial Plaza, with ample parking available.
Northwinds Hotel - Outdoor Patio

Basecamp Canmore Lodge: Comfort and Convenience 

  • Enjoy Spacious rooms, a central location, a large great room for gatherings, sauna relaxation, and complimentary bike rentals—your ideal and affordable Canmore getaway awaits!

MTN House Hotel: A Touch of Luxury

  • Indulge in luxury at MTN House Hotel, offering upscale amenities, a renowned restaurant, and beautifully designed interiors for a truly pampered experience. There is also a shuttle available to take guests to local destinations. 

Basecamp Suites Canmore: Mountain Views and Rooftop Hot Tub

  • Experience stunning mountain views and unwind in the rooftop hot tub at Basecamp Resorts Suites, conveniently located steps from downtown Canmore. With full kitchens and multiple bedrooms, there's plenty of space for the whole crew

The Canmore Folk Festival is more than just a music event – it's a celebration of community, culture, and the great outdoors. With the right preparations and insider tips, you're all set for an unforgettable journey filled with great music and mountain adventures. So pack your bags, and get ready to experience the magic of the Canmore Folk Festival like never before!

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