This rustic and secluded lodge on the shores of Bow Lake sports the most scenic location of any lodging in Banff National Park. Built in 1937 by trapper and guide Jimmy Simpson, the building is pretty much as it was then, with every detail preserved.
(Simpson, who left England and came to Canada at age 19, became a legendary eccentric, and much-admired Banff pioneer.)
There's nothing overly fancy here, just simple comforts, an incredible view, and the pleasure of being a half-hour's drive from the next-closest accommodations -- it's one of the few secluded lodges in Banff National Park even though it's located right off the Icefields Parkway. The stairs creak as you climb them and the walls are thin; guest rooms are furnished in a modest style and the light flickers a bit when you switch it on. Bathrooms in all guest rooms are clean, though quite basic and small, with stand-up showers. All-inclusive packages take away any worrying about meals. The restaurant serves simple but hearty food at a reasonable price, and the setting is full of rustic mountain ambience. A world-class location for ski touring, Num-Ti-Jah is at its best in winter. Drawing an outdoor-loving crowd of people who aren't necessarily looking for luxury amenities, guests here prefer a lodge with heaps of character and history. Sometimes that just leaves you imagining the possibilities an upgrade could do, but to love Num-Ti-Jah is to love it as it is.