DAY 1 Arrive in Vancouver and check into your hotel for the night. Have some time for exploring the city voted number one travel destination in North America by the American Business Association!
DAY 2 Our incredible train journey begins at Pacific Central Station as we hear the famous "all aboard" on our Rocky Mountaineer Train Odyssey. Follow the Fraser River past snow-capped mountains until it meets the Thompson River at Hell's Gate. Breakfast/ lunch are served aboard. Late day arrival in Kamloops. Overnight
DAY 3 We board our train this morning, and witness such spectacular sights as the Shuswap Lakes, Monashee Mountains, and Glacier National Park. We next cross the Selkirk Mountains and roll through the Spiral Tunnels, an incredible engineering feat where mile-long freight trains actually spiral inside the mountains and come out directly over themselves. You can see the front and back of the train at the same time! We climb Kicking Horse Pass and cross the Continental Divide into Banff National Park. Disembark and transfer to our hotel in Banff.
DAY 4 After a hearty breakfast our sightseeing includes the Banff Gondola Ride to the summit of Sulfur Mountain, complete with panoramic views of Banff's spectacular scenery. We visit Bow Falls and have the afternoon at leisure. Perhaps enjoy a hike in the nearby trails, a round of golf, horseback riding, or a stroll through the town. The hotsprings are wonderful. For the very adventurous try a helicopter excursion.
DAY 5 A full day tour takes us into Yoho National Park (June thru early October) to see Emerald Lake and Takakkaw Falls, third highest in Canada. See the Natural Rock Bridge. We overnight in Lake Louise at the magnificent Fairmont Hotel. Lake Louise is one of the most beautiful spots on earth. Her green-blue waters form a perfect mirror reflection of Mount Victoria.
DAY 6 We have a free day at Lake Louise. Stroll the lake trail or the energetic can climb to the magnificent views at the teahouse built by the Canadian Pacific Railroad many years ago. Nearby is a trail walk that leads you to great views of several ancient glaciers. How about renting a canoe and paddling out onto the lake or you can visit Moraine Lake.
DAY 7 The "Icefields Parkway", one of the world's great scenic drives, awaits us today! Climb Sunwapta Pass with vistas of alpine meadows, waterfalls and massive columns of prehistoric ice. Pass Bow Lake, Peyto
Lake, & Mistaya Lake and observe the stunning blues and greens of the water. We'll ride a Sno-Coach onto the Columbia Icefield's Athabasca Glacier. The Columbia Icefields are 125 square miles in size (massive!), with no fewer than 30 glaciers where 3 river systems flow to three different oceans. We see the reflections of the mountains in her aqua blue waters and we'll find out how rock flour helps the water retain its mesmerizing color. Arrive in Jasper, jewel of the Canadian Rockies, where we spend the night.
DAY 8 Our morning is at leisure and you may decide to take an optional trip to Maligne Lake and board a narrated cruise (highly recommended) to Spirit Island. The feelings of calm and peace that overtake you in the wild Canadian Rockies will refresh you like never before. This afternoon we bid farewell to Jasper and depart on VIA Rail's great Trans-Canadian bound for the East. We roll through Edmonton, capital of Alberta. Cross the mighty Saskatchewan River which originates at the Columbia Icefields and winds its way to Hudson's Bay.
DAY 9 Then continue into the great wheatfield province of Saskatchewan along the Yellowhead Route where settlers crossed in their colonization of the untamed west. Our first-class rail cars are recently refurbished to
the 1950's genre in Art Deco and. Private bedrooms are comfortable with all meals included!
DAY 10 Our epic journey continues. Enjoy a hearty breakfast (included) and then occupy the observation dome which offers unequalled views as we roll through the green and golden wheatfields into Manitoba. Arrive in Winnipeg for a one-hour stop and then travel into northern Ontario, past sparkling lakes and sun-dappled forests. The bullet car is a great meeting place for conversation and the meals on-board are fabulous. Fall asleep this evening to the gentle rocking of the train. Ride the rails across track laid over the hardest rock on earth.
DAY 11 Arrive this morning into Toronto, Ontario. Transfer to our hotel with the rest of the day free. This evening you might want to visit one of the tallest free standing structures on Earth, the CN Tower. Be sure to ride the elevators to the second platform.
DAY 12 Depart Toronto for the Niagara Peninsula. Within its heart is one of the world's natural wonders, Niagara Falls. We have time to board the "Maid of the Mist" (weather permitting) to view both the American and Canadian sides of the falls. See the floral clock and picturesque village of Niagara-on-the-lake. Return to Toronto for an orientation tour of the city and some free time for shopping. Our tour guide will host a special farewell dinner atop the 1800 foot CN Tower (tallest in the world) where we can recall the highlights of our amazing journey across Canada. The views are quite impressive from this gigantic height and we can stand on the glass floor that looks down 1400 feet to the city below! Overnight Toronto.
DAY 13 All aboard! we travel by train on VIA1 into French speaking Canada. A pleasant train journey past oak and ash trees delivers us to Montreal, Quebec. The city hustles with the color and flair of an international port. The city receives 4,000 ships per year and is a potpouri of sights and fragrances. We have time on our own to explore the Chinatown or see the city from river level on a harbor cruise. Overnight
DAY 14 Our morning tram tour introduces us to the second largest French-speaking city in the world. Old Montreal is fascinating and has seen haggling and trading for 300 years. Today it is described as "Amsterdam rolled into Paris" in a vibrant new world culture. A special tram tour will show us Notre Dame Basilica, Olympic Park, Mount Royal, and the Montreal Harbor on the great St. Lawrence River. This afternoon you might shop for bargains, French Style! Board overnight VIA Rail train and check into your comfortable bedroom.
DAY 15 We begin our day aboard our train with continental breakfast and arrive in the early afternoon in Halifax. Transfer to hotel in Halifax for overnight at one of our comfortable hotels.
DAY 16 A special treat awaits us today. Our escorted tour shows us Peggy Cove and the most photographed lighthouse on Earth. Overnight in Halifax once more
DAY 17 Tour ends today with checkout from our hotel at 11:00AM.