If you’ve ever dreamt of taking a luxury train ride through the wilderness, it might be closer to home than you thought. The Rocky Mountaineer gives you the chance to experience an unforgettable multi-day train journey through the Rocky Mountains, with three distinct routes across Canada (and one in the United States). From the stunning views to the gourmet cuisine, you’ll find plenty of reasons to book a ticket and make this journey your next vacation.
What Is It Like Onboard A Luxury Train Car?
Onboard the train, you’ll find glass-domed coaches for incredible panoramic views of the passing scenery. There’s even an outdoor viewing area to take your experience to another level. You’ll be able to view spectacular mountain landscapes and alpine lakes while dedicated hosts provide insight into historic sites, scenery, and wildlife along the way.
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The services and amenities aboard the Rocky Mountaineer are like that of a luxury hotel. Some routes include lounge cars and separate dining. Hosts and culinary staff are there to keep your wine glass full and prepare gourmet meals inspired by local cuisines. Breakfast and lunch are usually served aboard the train, with some dinners included for certain train journeys.
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Although the journeys can last anywhere from 2 days to a week (or more!), there are no sleeper cars or cabins on the Rocky Mountaineer. Instead, guests are transported to hotels in the stopovers located along the route. Accommodation, transfers, and luggage delivery are all included in the package price.
This means you can enjoy the scenery and amenities during the daylight and relax in a comfortable hotel in the evenings – or enjoy a dinner out. You also have the option of extending your stay in various cities along the way to explore all there is to offer.
Packages, Options, and Upgrades
There are quite a few options when it comes to the packages and services offered (in addition to route variations). First, you can choose a one-way or “circle journey,” where you can combine different routes to create an extended or roundtrip journey. Packages can be anywhere from 2-14 days, and there is a lot of room for customization and the option to explore stopover locations more fully.
Some options for add-ons include day tours and sightseeing transfers. It’s important to note that on the longer journeys, only a few of those days are fully aboard the train, while the remaining days are often sightseeing or bus tours.
There are two basic service packages for each journey, regardless of the length or destination – SilverLeaf and GoldLeaf. The main difference is the type of train car. SilverLeaf offers a single-level coach, while GoldLeaf is a double-level coach with a seating area on the second level and dining on the first level.
Both have a glass dome roof for the best scenic views, although the upgraded GoldLeaf service claims to have a larger full-dome roof. There are also more dining options and signature cocktails available for GoldLeaf passengers.
Rocky Mountaineer Routes
Although there are options to combine, extend, or customize your trip, there are four main routes – three across the Canadian Rocky Mountains and one through the U.S. Rocky Mountains.
- First Passage to the West: Vancouver – Kamloops – Banff / Lake Louise
- Journey Through the Clouds: Vancouver – Kamloops – Jasper
- Rain Forest to Gold Rush: Vancouver – Whistler – Quesnel – Jasper
- Rockies to the Red Rocks: Moab – Glenwood Springs – Denver
All journeys are available in both directions, so you can choose to start in one of the destination locations.
What does a luxury train journey cost?
Such a unique and unforgettable experience does come with a high price tag. Generally speaking, luxury train travel is more expensive than other forms of travel. However, unlike other modes of transport, the extra cost includes amenities like fine dining, overnight hotels, and some tours and excursions.
On the Rocky Mountaineer, a two-day journey starts at around $1455 USD, with two-week packages up to nearly $8,000 USD. While it can be expensive, it’s worth considering if you’re looking to have a memorable one-of-a-kind experience.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com