Are you a nature lover and want the best views of the Canadian Rockies? Then look no further than the train the Rocky Mountaineer! Rocky Mountaineer offers a couple of classes of service for you to choose from.
Silver Leaf is their entry category – you are seated in a single level glass dome coach, oversized dome windows, hot entree options plated to your preference served at your seat, reclining comfortable pre-assigned seating, complimentary alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, gourmet snacks, and outdoor viewing area between coaches. There is also a great onboard story teller. The hotels are comfortable accomodations with restaurants on the property or within walking distance. All accommodations in Kamloops and Quesnel, while charming are of moderate standard and cannot be upgraded.
Gold Leaf is a step up in your on train journey. The custom bi level dome allows you to sit up top and dine below. Full dome windows with panoramic views on the top level and gourmet a la carte meals served in the lower level with picture window viewing. The seats are the same as in silver leaf, comfortable and reclining, alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages are included throughout the journey. The outdoor area is a large open-air vestibule. Your hotel accommodations are luxurious with premium room categories. All accommodations in Kamloops and Quesnel, while charming are of moderate standard and cannot be upgraded.
A Rocky Mountaineer train trip is the perfect extension to a Alaska cruise. There are many itineraries for you to choose from. Here is one of their most popular itineraries, First Passage to the West at Leisure.
Day 1: Tour Start – Vancouver
Arrive in Vancouver and spend time exploring this scenic city on your own. Overnight in Vancouver.
Day 2: Vancouver to Kamloops
Board the Rocky Mountaineer train at the Vancouver Station at 7:30am PT. Travel from the coastal city of Vancouver to Kamloops, in the heart of British Columbia’s interior. On today’s journey you will see dramatic changes in scenery, from the lush green fields of the Fraser Valley, through forests and winding river canyons surrounded by the peaks of the Coast and Cascade Mountains, to the desert-like environment of the BC Interior. Highlights include the rushing waters of Hell’s Gate in the Fraser Canyon and the steep slopes and rock sheds along the Thompson River. Breakfast & lunch included onboard. Your day concludes as the Rocky Mountaineer travels along the shores of Kamloops Lake into Kamloops between 6:00pm and 7:30pm PT. Spend the evening exploring the city of Kamloops or relaxing in your hotel room.
Day 3: Kamloops to Lake Louise
Board the Rocky Mountaineer train at the Kamloops Station at 6:25am PT, to continue your journey east to the mighty Canadian Rockies and the province of Alberta. Travel across ranchlands, along rocky lakeshores, over high mountain passes and through the remarkable tunnels that form part of the rich rail history of the Canadian Rockies. Highlights include Craigellachie, where the last spike of the Canadian Pacific Railway was driven, the climb over Rogers Pass, the Kicking Horse Canyon, the Spiral Tunnels and, the glaciers and snow-capped peaks of the Canadian Rockies. Your rail journey ends upon arrival in Lake Louise between 7:00pm and 8:30pm MT.
Day 4: Icefields and Glaciers Experience
Today, enjoy a full-day tour along one of the most scenic highways in the world as you travel to Jasper National Park on the Icefields Parkway. The Columbia Icefield is one of the largest accumulations of ice south of the Arctic Circle and one of the most accessible icefields in North America. At the Columbia Icefield Centre, time is provided for lunch (not included) after you have had a chance to experience the Columbia Icefield Glacier Adventure (admission included). Here you will ride on an Ice Explorer to the middle of the Athabasca Glacier to learn more about its geological features. Afterward, brief stops will be made at Bow and Peyto Lakes before arriving back in Lake Louise this afternoon. Overnight in Lake Louise.
Tour the Athabasca Glacier in a giant six-wheel drive Ice Explorer vehicle while your guide explains the history of this ancient glacier and points out interesting geological features. Think of it like a “monster-truck meets glacier” adventure where you learn new things!
Day 5: Sightseeing Tour Yoho Park Lake Louise to Banff
This morning you are free to explore beautiful Lake Louise on your own. After lunch, a half-day tour takes you into Yoho National Park to view some of its natural wonders. Among the attractions are the Spiral Tunnels, Emerald Lake and a natural rock bridge that spans the Kicking Horse River. At the end of the tour you will be transferred to Banff. Overnight in Banff.
Day 6: Free Day in Banff
Today you will have an entire day to spend exploring Banff National Park on your own. Optional activities include soaking in the mineral pools at Upper Hot Springs, enjoying a nature walk on nearby mountain trails, visiting Banff’s historic museums, cruising on Lake Minnewanka or playing a round of golf at The Fairmont Banff Springs. Overnight in Banff.
Day 7: Banff to Calgary with Panoramic Helicopter Tour
Today you will enjoy a full-day tour concluding in Calgary. Begin the morning with a sightseeing tour of Banff. Among the points of interest are Bow Falls, Lake Minnewanka, Surprise Corner and the Hoodoos. Banff Gondola included. Continue on to Kananaskis for the highlight of today’s adventure, a 12-minute Panoramic Helicopter Tour over the remarkable landscape of the Rockies. Overnight in Calgary.
Panoramic Helicopter Tour – Banff to Calgary
Put on your best James Bond accent and take to the skies with a Panoramic Helicopter Tour. This 12-minute spine-tingling adventure will have you soaring 2,300 metres above sea level, giving you a totally incredible view of glaciers, mountain vistas, lakes, and waterfalls. This is the Rockies as you’ve never seen them.
Day 8: Tour End – Calgary
Your vacation ends upon checkout from your Calgary hotel.