Rocky Mountaineer Tours
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Rocky Mountaineer offers over 50 unique vacation packages and three distinctive rail routes through British Columbia and Alberta. Onboard Rocky Mountaineer, you’ll enjoy the company of fellow travellers, wind through lush rainforests, gaze at snow-capped mountains, and catch glimpses of wildlife. From the day-to-day itinerary, to hotel and luggage transfers, Rocky Mountaineer takes care of your travel arrangements, so you can sit back, enjoy the scenery, and socialize to your heart’s content.
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Rocky Mountaineer is a distinguished rail travel operator that features scenic rail trips through British Columbia and the Canadian Rockies. It was established in 1988, and served Calgary, the Alpine town of Jasper, and the city of Vancouver. At that time, the route was called the "Canadian Rockies by Daylight." Basically, this service operated much like today's service, featuring one overnight stopover in Kamloops, a city that sits at the confluence of the Thompson River and Kamloops Lake. On June 4, 1989, VIA Rail, which operated the train service, started its second season of operations. At that time, it renamed the service brand to Rocky Mountaineer, keeping the itinerary the same as the prior season. The company, in its current form, was established in 1990 by the Armstrong Group, and bases its operations out of Vancouver, British Columbia. The first train began running, under the new company and brand on May 27, 1990. Rocky Mountaineer is reputed to be the busiest of privately owned rail services on the North American continent. The train service has, so far, transported over 2 million passengers since its founding in 1990. Rocky Mountaineer features two service levels – The GoldLeaf service and SilverLeaf service. The GoldLeaf service operates on all the tour operator's routes, and features a bi-level, glass-enclosed dome coach that displays full-length windows and rotational, reclining seats. Three to 4 onboard hosts attend to the passengers' needs along with a professional culinary team. Guests taking advantage of this service receive hot meals, prepared onboard, which are served in a lower-level dining car. The two tiers featured in the GoldLeaf coach can be accessed by a spiral staircase. An ADA elevator can also be used. The SilverLeaf service level operates on the same routes as the GoldLeaf service. This service features a single level glass-dome coach that comes equipped with reclining seats and large windows. Hot entrees are served at breakfast and lunch, with gourmet snacks offered during the trip's duration.
- Rocky Mountaineer is a rail-tour company, based in Western Canada.
- The tour company runs trains on four routes through Alberta and British Columbia.
- Two choices of 2-day and 3-day rail journeys are offered.
- One of the 2-day rail journeys is known as the Journey through the Clouds. It goes from Vancouver to Kamloops to the final destination of Jasper.
- The other 2-day rail journey is called First Passage to the West. It goes from Vancouver, to Kamloops to Lake Louise to Banff.
- The Coast Passage journey is a 3-day trip that starts in Seattle, continues to Vancouver, and makes stops in Whistler and Quesnel before ending in Jasper.
- The Rainforest to Gold Rush trip is a 3-day train excursion that starts in Vancouver and stops in Whistler and Quesnel before arriving at the final stop in Jasper.
- Rocky Mountaineer is an award-winning travel provider. In 2007, National Geographic recognized the tour operator as one of the world's best journeys. The company has also received awards 7 times (as of 2020) for its GoldLeaf service. The honors were bestowed at the World Travel Awards, which hailed the train tour service as the "World's Leading Travel Experience by Train."
- Rocky Mountaineer features over 75 rail cars in its fleet.
- In 1988, the train tour operator started as VIA Rail, a once-weekly daytime train service that ran from Calgary to Jasper before ending in Vancouver.
- The current company was established in 1990 by the Armstrong Group, and has its base of operations in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Top Reasons To Choose Rocky Mountaineer Tours
- Traveling on Rocky Mountaineer allows passengers to see beautiful scenery and visit great places, such as Banff, Jasper, and Vancouver. For example, travelers who begin their rail journey in Vancouver can visit attractions, such as the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park, Granville Island, and Stanley Park before their rail journey begins. If you want to see Canada, this is the way to do it.
- Train travel runs from mid-April to mid-October, so you can go during the shoulder season and save money.
- The train line offers two premium service levels, which make seeing the sights relaxing, and pleasant and memorable.
- Travelers receive a full breakfast shortly after departure. In fact, all rail journeys feature breakfast, lunch, and snacks, including alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.
- The dining service featured by Rocky Mountaineer is similar to the dining service provided to business class travelers on international flights.
- Both breakfast and lunch are served as multi-course meals.
- Boarding is simple, as your seat number is displayed on your boarding pass.
- Passengers can freely walk around after the train departs. Trains do not feature seatbelts.
- Wildlife spotting is part of the Rocky Mountaineer experience. Some of the Canadian animals you might see include magpies, mule deer, a bald eagle, elk, or black bear.
- Games and activities are featured onboard.
- Complimentary motor coach transfers are provided between the train and hotel (you do not sleep onboard the train). Luggage is also delivered to where you plan to stay.
- Train journeys cover 2 or 3 days – just enough time to appreciate the Canadian wilderness and scenery, with the option of extending your trip, if desired.
Frequently Asked Questions About Rocky Mountaineer Tours
- Contact Affordable Tours.com at 1-800-935-2620 to book air fare and reserve a 2-day or 3-day train trip through Rocky Mountaineer.
Contact Affordable Tours.com at 1-800-935-2620 to book air fare and reserve a 2-day or 3-day train trip through Rocky Mountaineer.
- What routes are featured by Rocky Mountaineer?
You can choose from 2-day rail journeys or 3-day train trips. Two-day journeys are represented by the travel choices, Journey through the Clouds and First Passage to the West, both which leave from Vancouver and stop in Kamloops. While the Journey through the Clouds ends in Jasper, the First Passage to the West terminates in Banff. If you want to take 3-days on your rail trip, the Coastal Passage route begins in Seattle, stops in Vancouver, and travels the Canadian Rockies. The other 3-day travel choice, the Rainforest to Gold Rush, starts in Vancouver before stopping in Whistler and Quesnel, and ending in Jasper.
- What do I need to know to choose a Rocky Mountaineer package?
To make the best travel decision, passengers who book travel with Rocky Mountaineer should decide how much they want to spend on the rail package first. Also, they should factor in their travel availability and how long they want to spend on vacation. Next, trip-planning travelers need to think about what activities they wish to pursue. Do they want to join group activities or explore on their own? Finally, it is a good idea to consider add-ons. Think about upgrades, transfers, rental cars, and dining. For instance, some travelers book an Alaska cruise in addition to traveling by rail with Rocky Mountaineer.
- When do Rocky Mountaineer trains run?
Rocky Mountaineer provides train service from mid-April to mid-October.
- Can you cancel a train trip and receive a refund?
While you can cancel service or make changes, you are subject to change fees and will not receive a refund if you cancel your trip. Also, changes cannot be put through if they are not received 15 or more days before the start of a train journey. To learn more about fees and cancellations, refer to Rocky Mountaineer's Terms and Conditions on the tour operator's website.
- Should I purchase travel insurance?
You do not need to buy travel insurance when you enter Canada. However, travel professionals recommend that people traveling outside their country should always buy the coverage. In this case, you should buy adequate protection for medical expenses and trip interruption or cancellation. If you want to ensure your travel investment and safeguard your finances, you should never leave home without buying a trip policy.
- Do Rocky Mountaineer trains have sleeper cars?
No. None of the trains have sleeper cars. The idea of taking a Rocky Mountaineer journey is to see the beautiful scenery of the Rocky Mountains and British Columbia during the day. After a day onboard the train, guests spend the night in comfortable accommodations in Kamloops, Whistler, or Quesnel in British Columbia.
- How long are the journeys on Rocky Mountaineer?
Journeys average about 300 miles or 460 kilometers each day. For example, a trip from Vancouver to Kamloops is 46 kilometers or 285 miles, while a trip from Kamloops to Jasper is 441 kilometers or 274 miles. If you travel from Kamloops to Banff, the total distance is about 497 kilometers or 309 miles. Whistler to Quesnel is approximately 500 kilometers or 311 miles while a trip from Quesnel to Jasper spans about 534 kilometers 332 miles. The only trip that is far shorter in scope starts in Vancouver and ends in Whistler. During this leg of the rails trip, passengers travel 119 kilometers or about 75 miles.
- Can you smoke onboard the train?
Smoking is not permitted on any part of the train. There are smoking areas designated at the train stations, except the one in Kamloops.
- What are the benefits of traveling by rail?
One of the advantages of traveling by train, especially a Rocky Mountaineer train, is that travelers have ample leg room and comfortable seats. Passengers can also travel through areas of the Rocky Mountains and Canada that cannot be accessed on foot or by motor coach or vehicle. Trains on the Rocky Mountaineer lines follow rushing streams, wind past towering cascades, and navigate through river canyons. If you want to see spectacular Canadian scenery, this mode of transportation is the best way to do so.
- What are Rocky Mountaineer’s Circle Journeys?
Circle Journeys allow passengers to combine one or more Rocky Mountaineer train routes, so they can stay on the train longer and enjoy more of the Canadian landscape. Circle Journeys begin and end at the same city or town.
- What are the seasonal differences in the scenery on Rocky Mountaineer journeys?
If you take a daylight train ride in the spring, via Rocky Mountaineer, you may see a few bears, emerging after their winter hibernation. This is also a good time to see birds nesting, as the hardwood trees are just starting to show their leaves. In the summer, the trees and vegetation are lush and green and you will see more wildlife. If you travel during the fall, you won't see the leaves colored, to the same extent as they are in the U.S. in New England. That is because evergreens dominate the area.
- What airports are the closest to Rocky Mountaineer train stations?
The closest airports are Calgary International Airport (near Banff); Vancouver International Airport (close to Whistler); Edmonton International Airport (near Jasper); and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in Seattle. Schedule your flights through your travel representative to arrive at least 1 day before your trip begins and leave 1 day after the end of your train journey. That way, you will have enough time to transfer when arriving or leaving.
- How do I choose a route?
If you are not sure about your travel route, download a Rocky Mountain brochure online and read more about the locale. You should also research the cities where the train stops. This will give you more of an idea what to expect and assist you in choosing the right travel route(s). In addition, you should also consider when you will be traveling. Some areas, for example, may tend to flood during the spring because of the snow melt. Circle Journeys, offered by Rocky Mountaineer, allows you to combine routes and personalize your train travel experience. Don't make any definite plans before doing some online research first. That way, you will better know what to anticipate. You can also determine what sites and attractions you want to visit before, during, or after your journey.
- Can Rocky Mountaineer book air fare for your tour too?
No. Air fare should be booked separately through your travel representative.
- What makes Rocky Mountaineer different?
Rocky Mountaineer is the only private train passenger service designed for traveling through the Canadian Rockies. Because it features such beautiful and scenic routes, the tour operator provides train rides during daylight hours from mid-April to mid-October. At these times, the days are longer than other times of the year. The trains stop at towns and cities where guests stay overnight before they continue their journey. Seats can be reserved in GoldLeaf and SilverLeaf train cars, both which display the ultimate in luxury and dining. The company has received many accolades and awards for its incomparable rail journeys.
Fantastic scenery, service, and accommodations.
We all had a great time on this trip as we received excellent services!
This trip was everything that was advertised and more. I would highly recommend others to take this trip.
Outstanding trip and service.
It was an incredible trip-fantastic scenery, very, very pleasant staff and an opportunity to see a beautiful place in the world.