Day 1: Depart Chicago
New England Fall Foliage West and Midwest tour members will meet in Chicago Union Station at 8:00 p.m. to board the eastbound Lake Shore Limited. Departure is scheduled for 9:30 p.m.
Relax in your comfortable reclining coach seat with leg rest. Roomettes or Bedrooms are available at an additional cost.
You’re free to explore the train. Go to the lounge car for snacks, sandwiches and beverages.
Today southeastern tour members will depart for Albany.
Day 2: En Route / Rutland
The Lake Shore Limited will pass through Toledo, Cleveland and Erie early this morning. Tour members from upper New York State will board this morning. Arrival into Albany is scheduled for 2:50 p.m. We’ll board our deluxe motorcoach and travel north 100 miles to Rutland, a southern Vermont city of 16,000. On our way to Rutland, we’ll visit the Bennington Battle Monument. The Monument is the tallest structure in Vermont, soaring 300 feet above Old Bennington.
Today Eastern tour members as far south as Washington, DC, can depart in time to ride connecting trains to Albany-Rensselaer and join the Midwest group for the motorcoach transfer to Rutland.
Your hotel for the next two nights is the Comfort Inn. There are dinner options within walking distance.
Meal(s): B* & L*
*Midwest and some upper New York members only (depending on time of boarding)
Day 3: Vermont
Following an included breakfast this morning we’ll visit the Norman Rockwell Museum of Vermont. The museum presents a collection of original Normal Rockwell art including paintings from The Saturday Evening Post, the Four Freedoms and the best in the field of American illustration.
Marble is one of Vermont’s major natural resources. It is shipped all over the world. Proctor is the home of the Vermont Marble Exhibit. One of the largest displays of its kind in the country, it illustrates the origin, quarrying and finishing of marble. You can watch a sculptor at work and visit a sculpture gallery. Displays include marble from Vermont and around the world.
Following an “on-your-own” lunch in Rutland, you’ll visit Hildene, one of the state’s major attractions. Hildene was the summer home of Robert Todd Lincoln, son of Abraham Lincoln and home to his descendants until 1975. The 24-room Georgian Revival Mansion is filled with original furnishings and personal family memorabilia, surrounded by formal gardens.
You’ll return to your hotel in Rutland for a second night. The Tour Director will host a Welcome Dinner tonight.
Meal(s): B & D
Day 4: Vermont / New Hampshire
Following breakfast (included), you’ll board our comfortable motorcoach and continue the New England discovery program. First on the schedule is the Vermont Country Store in Weston. This nationally known “mercantile” features practical items that you may not find anywhere else.
Continue to the Billings Farm and Museum to see both a modern, working dairy farm and a museum of Vermont farm life in the 1890s. The museum is housed in four reconstructed barns.
Following an “on-your-own” lunch, you’ll continue to Quechee Gorge. Vermont’s “Little Grand Canyon” lies west of Quechee. The bridge that spans the gorge 162 feet above the Ottauquechee River provides a great view of this natural spectacle. We will have time for photos.
You’ll arrive in Meredith and depart on the Winnipesaukee Scenic Railroad excursion train for a two-hour round trip to Lakeport. The train hugs the picturesque shoreline of Lake Winnipesaukee, the state’s loveliest and largest lake. Enjoy a full-course turkey dinner with all the trimmings on the trip.
Our home for the next two nights is the Hampton Inn North Conway.
Meal(s): B & D
Day 5: North Conway
A Continental breakfast is included this morning. Today we’re traveling on the Conway Scenic Railroad through some of the most spectacular scenery in the Eastern U.S.
On the Notch train you travel through awesome Crawford Notch past sheer bluffs, steep ravines, cascading brooks, panoramic mountain vistas and across the famed Frankenstein Trestle and Willey Brook Bridge. The destination is Crawford Depot. You’ll enjoy first-class seating. Live commentary includes history and folklore of the railroad era as well as points of interest. A boxed lunch will be served (included). An on-board snack bar offers sandwiches, snacks and beverages. We will return to our North Conway hotel.
Meal(s): CB & L
Day 6: Mt. Washington
Another high point of our fabulous New England Fall Foliage vacation will be the trip on the Mt. Washington Cog Railway to the summit of the highest mountain in the Northeast U.S. The ride up Mt. Washington on the world’s first mountain-climbing cog railway has been an exciting and unforgettable experience for well over a century. The ever-changing surroundings, the magnificent views, the sights and sounds of unique steam locomotives in action and some of the steepest railway tracks in existence, combine to place it among the best of the world’s great railway journeys. Some days the view from the summit of Mt. Washington spans four states, Quebec and the Atlantic Ocean, limited only by the curvature of the earth.
We’ll stop for an “on-your-own” lunch following our Mt. Washington excursion and continue through spectacular scenery about 120 miles to picturesque Stowe, Vermont. The village of Stowe is featured on many postcards of New England.
The world-class Trapp Family Lodge is a high point of this tour. You’ll spend the next two nights basking in the beauty of this magnificent Austrian-inspired lodge. The complex is exquisitely managed by the descendants of the “Sound of Music” family. Located atop the highest point of land in the area, your view of the breathtaking changing colors is endless. An exquisite three-course-dinner and two Vermont country breakfasts are included.
Meal(s): CB & D
Day 7: Vermont
A full day of northern Vermont discovery begins at 8:30 a.m. when we travel the short distance to the Vermont Teddy Bear Company, for a glimpse of the step-by-step creative process required to make these jointed teddy bears.
We will then travel to the town of Shelburne where we’ll visit one of Vermont’s major attractions, the Shelburne Museum. There are 37 historic structures, many of them dismantled and moved there from various parts of New England, reconstructed and restored. Other attractions include a railroad depot, private car and locomotive, a two-lane covered bridge with a footpath, a round barn and a hand-crafted model circus parade more than 500 feet long. The side-wheeler steamboat Ticonderoga was hauled two miles over land from Lake Champlain to its landlocked berth at the museum.
The collections of Americana displayed include folk art, dolls, toys, quilts, rugs, pewter, coaches, carriages and wagons as well as fire fighting, hunting and agricultural equipment.
The Electra Havemeyer Webb Memorial houses European furnishings, sculpture and paintings by Edgar Degas, Francisco Goya, Edouard Manet, Claude Monet and Rembrandt, as well as works by American Artist Mary Cassatt. Formal gardens, ornamental trees and shrubs, roses and lilacs adorn the grounds. An “on-your-own” lunch is available.
You’re free this evening to enjoy an “on-your-own” dinner in the hotel or another fine Stowe restaurant.
Day 8: En Route
Breakfast is included in our hotel. This morning we’ll visit the Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream Factory in Waterbury. We’ll enjoy a 30-minute guided tour, watch a seven-minute film and pay a visit to FlavoRoom to sample the newest offerings.
We will continue on to our final Vermont attraction, the Waterbury Center where our travelers will visit the Cold Hollow Cider Mill. You’ll see cider made the old fashion way.
An “on-your-own” lunch stop will be made in Bristol. Following lunch, you continue south through Green Mountain scenery to Albany. Eastern tour members will leave the tour in Albany where they can continue to home destinations or overnight and return home tomorrow by rail (Albany hotel and connecting rail not included).
Midwest participants will continue to the Amtrak station where they will board the Lake Shore Limited for Chicago. They’ll enjoy the reclining coach seat with leg rest they enjoyed on the eastbound train. Sleeping accommodations are available at an additional cost. Dinner is included on the Lake Shore Limited.
Meal(s): B & D*
Day 9: En Route Home
Midwesterners will arrive into Chicago at 9:45 a.m. on the Lake Shore Limited. They’ll continue on to home destinations throughout the morning and afternoon.
Eastern travelers who spent the night in Albany will continue to home destinations throughout the day.
* Midiwest tour members only.