Boomtowns, Buffalo and Badlands

This multiple day tour from Coutts, on the US-Canada border, takes you to the signature attractions of the Canadian Badlands: sacred First Nations rock art at Writing-on-Stone, Canada's most extensive badlands at Dinosaur Provincial Park and the world-class Royal Tyrrell Museum. Enroute you'll find farmers' markets, festivals and rodeos in friendly prairie towns.

Be sure to look up driving times before you depart. A full list of visitor centers as well as contact information for attractions on this tour can be found by downloading the tour documents.

The Canadian Badlands Touring Routes aim to follow good secondary highways and occasionally, offer gravel-road alternatives. Please drive carefully and respect private property. Every effort has been made to ensure accurate information at the time of publication. You are advised to conduct further research in advance. We are unable to accept responsibility for any inconvenience, loss or injury sustained as a result of anyone relying upon this information.

Tour Route

1. Day One highlights | Coutts/Milk River to Writing-on-Stone

Journey from the US-Canada border across a vast prairie landscape to a sacred site of the First Nations people, Writing-on-Stone. Join a park interpreter to see ancient writings on sandstone cliffs and experience the spirited Milk River Valley by canoe, foot or on horseback.

2. Day Two highlights | Writing-on-Stone to Dinosaur Provincial Park

Everyone loves dinosaurs! Visit to Devil’s Coulee and World Heritage Site Dinosaur Provincial Park to enjoy a day or more of discoveries for everyone. At Devil’s Coulee near Warner, peek into a 70-million year old dinosaur nursery and then experience Dinosaur Provincial Park by foot or on an interpretive bus tour.

3. Day Three highlights | Dinosaur Provincial Park to Drumheller

The Great Canadian Dinosaur Rush extended from Dinosaur Provincial Park through the Drumheller Valley and up the Red Deer River. Close on the heels of the dinosaur hunters were coal miners, ranchers and farmers, all seeking wealth in prairie soils. Today you can prospect for fossils with a Royal Tyrrell Museum interpreter; also climb Canada's last wooden tipple, ride a coal train and test your nerves in the haunted wash house at the Atlas Coal Mine National Historic Site.

4. Day Four highlights | Drumheller and North

To summon the words of Robert Frost, two roads diverge and sorry, you cannot travel both. From Drumheller, you can choose either to continue north on Highway 56 for a ride on the infamous Alberta Praire Rail Exchange from Stettler to Big Valley, or set out for the boomtown communities along Highway 21 and the remarkable Dry Island Buffalo Jump and the endless activities the park provides.

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