Day 1: Depart Chicago
Complete Trans-Canada Experience tour members will meet the Tour Director in the Metropolitan Lounge at Chicago’s Union Station throughout the morning. We’ll board Amtrak’s Empire Builder, a double-decker, Superliner-equipped train, in time for its afternoon departure. This famous train will carry us across seven northern states to Seattle, Washington.
Relax in your comfortable private Roomette sleeping accommodations. Bedrooms are available at an additional cost.
After settling in, you may want to go to the glass-walled Sightseer Lounge car for spectacular viewing of the passing scenery. All full-course, tastefully prepared, dining car meals are included.
Day 2: En Route
This morning we cross the remote flatlands of western North Dakota and eastern Montana. The agricultural landscape continues until mid afternoon.
Meal(s) B, L & D
Day 3: Seattle / Vancouver
You may want to rise early to watch the sun come up over some spectacular scenery. This morning the Empire Builder will enter the 7.8 mile-long Cascade Tunnel. For the next several hours we’ll wind through the scenic Cascade Mountains. Finally, we roll south through the lush Puget Sound
area and ease into the Seattle train station.
We’ll board our deluxe motorcoach for a sightseeing tour of the Seattle area. It will include Chinatown, concrete floating bridges, Lake Washington, the arboretum, the University of Washington, plus sweeping views of Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains. We will also visit the famous Seattle Space Needle, with incredible photo opportunities from the observation deck and Pike Place Market.
We will continue on to Vancouver, one of North America’s most prosperous cities and one of its most beautiful.
We will check into the deluxe Blue Horizon Hotel, our home for tonight. The hotel is convenient to many of this great city’s major attractions.
Day 4: Vancouver
This morning we’ll check out of our hotel and embark on a three-and-a-half hour sightseeing tour of the city. The tour will include Gastown, Chinatown, Stanley Park, English Bay, Marine Drive, the waterfront and Queen Elizabeth Park with an “on-your-own” lunch stop at Granville Island.
This afternoon we will visit the world-famous Vancouver Aquarium. More than 8,000 marine animals are featured. They represent such diverse habitats as Arctic Canada and the Amazon Rain Forest. The ocean floor and its inhabitants can be viewed through the simulated portholes of a submarine in the North Pacific Gallery. A whale show and shark dives are also offered.
This evening we’ll transfer to The Keg Steakhouse for an included dinner.
Following our leisurely dinner we’ll transfer to the VIA Rail Station to prepare for our 8:30 p.m. departure. We’re about to embark on one of the world’s greatest rail passenger experiences . . . The Canadian! For four days and nights we’ll travel 2700 miles between the towering Canadian Rockies’ peaks, across the vast Prairie Plains and through the Canadian Shield wilderness on our way to Toronto. We’ll, of course, stop over in the heart of the Rockies for three days before continuing our eastbound journey. Enjoy a welcome reception in the lounge car upon departure. Relax in the comfort of your private Cabin.
Day 5: En Route
All meals aboard The Canadian are included in the elegant, art deco dining car. You’ll want to rise early this morning to enjoy breakfast in the dining car. Afterward you’ll want to head for one of the all-glass, bubble-top Vistadomes. You may be fortunate enough to catch the sun rising over the brilliant peaks and pine forests of the Canadian Rockies. What a thrilling rail journey you’ll experience today! Our train will wind between some of the highest peaks in the Canadian Rockies.
The most stunning scenery of the day will be experienced as we follow the Miette River toward Jasper; first Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies, comes into view and then we’ll roll through Yellowhead Pass.
We’ll arrive in Jasper at 4:00 p.m. and transfer across the street to the conveniently located Whistlers Inn. The Whistlers Inn is located in the heart of Jasper, close to shops and restaurants.
Meal(s) B & L
Day 6: Icefields Parkway / Banff
Today travelers will experience the Icefields Parkway, North America’s most scenic highway.
Another high point will be the visit to Lake Louise and its famous Chateau. The setting is one of the most picturesque in the Rockies. A boxed lunch will be served en route. We will arrive in Banff late this afternoon. Our lodging for two nights will be the conveniently located Banff Aspen Lodge.
Day 7: Banff
This morning we’ll embark on a Discover Banff Tour. The highlight of the tour will be the gondola ride to the top of Sulphur Mountain for a spectacular view.
You’re free this afternoon to rest, shop along Banff Avenue, or visit the Natural History or Parks Canada Museums.
Day 8: Depart Banff
This is one of the rare tours that allows you to experience the Icefield Parkway in both directions. We’ll depart Banff this morning and arrive at the Jasper VIA Rail station at mid afternoon. We’ll board the Canadian and depart for Toronto at 5:30 p.m. Enjoy all of the fantastic amenities of this world-class train for three days.
Meal(s) CB & D
Day 9: En Route
Three great meals, onboard activities and viewing the Great Plains of Canada are highlights as you roll into Winnipeg at 8:30 p.m. You can stroll “The Forks” while the train is serviced for its 10:30 p.m. departure. The Forks features vast array of dining and shopping experiences… just make sure you are back in plenty of time, the next train will be in 3 days.
Meal(s) B, L & D
Day 10: En Route
Today we discover the beauty of Northern Ontario. The last great glacier created hundreds of pristine lakes and huge rock protrusions. Today we discover the fascinating, rugged landscape of Northern Ontario as our train winds between pristine lakes and rock protrusions created by the last great glacier.
Meal(s) B, L & D
Day 11: Toronto / Montréal
We’ll arrive in Toronto’s Union Station at 9:30 a.m.
At 11:30 a.m. we will board one of VIA Rail’s swift trains to Montréal. Arrival is scheduled for 4:47 p.m. We will check into the Hotel Bonaventure, located across the street from the train station.
Day 12: En Route
This morning we’ll descend into the VIA Rail Station and prepare to board Amtrak’s Adirondack for our 10:20 a.m. departure for the 222-mile run along Lake Champlain and the beautiful Adirondack Mountains. This has been described as one of the top ten scenic train rides in the world!
Arrival into Schenectady is scheduled for 5:27 p.m. You will board the Lake Shore Limited for the 7:32 p.m. departure for Chicago. Eastern passengers will remain on the train until 5:57 p.m. when the train reaches Albany. They will spend the night at the Hilton Albany (2016); Hampton Inn & Suites Albany Downtown (2017) (Price not included).
Day 13: En Route to Chicago
This morning we are scheduled to arrive into Chicago at 9:45 a.m. Passengers will continue to home destinations throughout the day. Eastern people will depart Albany for home destinations.