Day 1: Depart Chicago
New England Fall Foliage West and Midwest travelers will meet in Chicago Union Station this afternoon. At 8:00 p.m. be ready 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.
Eastern tour members will depart tomorrow for Albany.
Day 2: En Route / Rutland
The Lake Shore will pass through Toledo, Cleveland, and Erie early this morning. Tour members from upper New York State will board the Lake Shore Limited, coach class, 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, East tour members as far south as Washington, DC, can depart in time to ride connecting trains from New York City 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*
Day 3: Vermont
Enjoy a Continental breakfast this morning before striking out to visit some of Vermont’s major attractions.
We’ll travel the short distance to Proctor where we’ll tour Wilson Castle. This mid 19th Century estate home was built in 1867 on a 115-acre property. With an elaborate facade of English brick and marble, the Castle has 32 rooms, complete with a towering turret, parapet and balcony. The Castle also features 84 stained glass windows and 13 fireplaces.
Marble is one of Vermont’s major natural resources. It is shipped all over the world. Proctor is also 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, 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): CB & D
Day 4: Vermont / New Hampshire
Following a Continental 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 and items 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 the 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 good view of this natural spectacle. We will have time for photos.
You’ll arrive in Meredith and depart on a 5:00 p.m. 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.
Continue by motorcoach to North Conway where you’ll spend the next two nights at the Hampton Inn.
Meal(s): CB & D
Day 5: North Conway
A Continental breakfast is included this morning in your hotel. Today you’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 Crawford return to our 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. A ride up Mt. Washington on the world’s first mountain-climbing cog railway remains an exciting and unforgettable experience as it has 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 change of color is endless. A very special three-course-dinner experience 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 board the motorcoach and roll westward 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.
At noon we’ll travel the short distance to another popular attraction, the Vermont Teddy Bear Company, for a glimpse of the step-by-step creative process required to make these jointed teddy bears.
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 check out of our hotel and travel a few miles to Waterbury Center where our travelers will visit the Cold Hollow Cider Mill. You’ll see cider made the old fashion way.
We’ll continue on to Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream Factory in Waterbury, our final Vermont attraction. We’ll enjoy a 30-minute guided tour, watch a seven-minute film, and pay a visit to FlavoRoom to sample the newest offerings.
An “on-your-own” lunch stop will be made in Bristol. Following lunch, you continue south through Green Mountain scenery to Albany. Eastern and Mid-Atlantic tour members will leave the tour group at The Hilton Albany, where they’ll spend the last night of the tour.
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
Eastern and Mid-Atlantic travelers will transfer to the Albany train station in time for the 8:10 a.m. train for New York City’s Penn Station. They’ll transfer there for trains to home destinations.
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.