Getting here

Waterton Lakes National Park

Waterton Lakes National Park is located in southwest Alberta, 271 km south of Calgary and 132 km southwest of Lethbridge (map of Waterton region).

By vehicle

From Calgary, take Highway 2 south to Fort Macleod, then west on Highway 3 to Pincher Creek, then south on Highway 6 to the park (approximately 3 hours).

From Banff National Park, a scenic 380 km route starts along Highway 1 east. Turn south at Highway 40 and take this scenic route over the Highwood Pass to Highway 22; or, travel further east and turn directly onto Highway 22 south. You will pass the Bar U Ranch National Historic Site just south of Longview. Highway 22 connects with Highway 3. Continue east on Highway 3 to Pincher Creek and then south on Highway 6 to the park.

From Lethbridge, drive south to Cardston on Highway 5, then west to the park on Highway 5 (approximately 1 hour and 40 minutes).

From British Columbia, travel by way of the Crowsnest Pass on Highway 3 to Pincher Creek and then south on Highway 6. From Fernie, BC, it is 204 km to the park (approximately 2 hours).

From Glacier National Park, Montana, go north through Cardston on Montana Highway 89 to Highway 2 then west on Highway 5 any time of year. From St. Mary, Montana it is about 80 km to the park (approximately 1 hour).

Distance from Waterton Lakes National Park (townsite):
City Kilometres Miles
Cardston 55 34
Pincher Creek 56 35
Lethbridge 132 82
Calgary 271 168
Medicine Hat 296 184
Banff 371 231
Edmonton 562 349
Chief Mountain border crossing (Seasonal. Open May 15 to September 30, weather dependent) 30 19
International ports of entry:
  • Chief Mountain: Chief Mountain Highway. Seasonal. Open May 15 to September 30, weather dependent
  • Carway/Peigan: Highway 2, south of Cardston, Alberta. Open year round
  • Roosville: Highway 93, south of Fernie, B.C. 24-hour, open year round

Border crossing location hours of operation may vary, please check Canadian Border Services and U.S. Customs and Border Protection websites for current opening/closing times.

Government of Canada travel advice and advisories: USA

International travellers (not including U.S. and Canadian citizens) may need a visa to enter the United States. Please refer to Information on U.S. Visas

By air

The nearest airport is Lethbridge. This airport handles domestic flights only. Calgary and Edmonton have international airports that are serviced by major national and international carriers. The nearest U.S. airports are Glacier Park near Kalispell (195 km) and Great Falls (323 km), Montana.

By car rental

There are several car rental agencies in Calgary and Lethbridge.

Road conditions

511 Alberta provides road conditions for Alberta.

Drive BC provides road conditions for British Columbia.

In winter, visitors should be prepared for variable road conditions in Waterton Lakes National Park. Winter storms can create high snow volumes, drifting snow, poor visibility and icy roads.

Date modified :