Since 1990, Rocky Mountaineer, the world’s largest privately owned luxury tourist train, has welcomed over 1.7 million guests to inhale the mountain air and let nature take their breath away. The unparalleled experience onboard the all dome-fleet offers rich, historic storytelling, World Class cuisine and a first-hand look at the vast and untouched wild beauty of the Pacific Northwest and Western Canada. These elements are exactly the reasons why many consider Rocky Mountaineer journeys as the only way to see the Canadian Rockies. With four routes, the unforgettable all-daylight train trips offer romance and history, reminding us that traveling is still about the journey as well as the destination. Onboard the train, guests are privy to the exceptional service and stunning Western Canadian scenery with endless views of old growth forests, glacier capped mountain peaks, and tumbling waterfalls.
Renowned for its luxurious bi-level glass-domed coaches, GoldLeaf Service allows for optimal viewing of soaring eagles, spawning salmon, and the occasional black bear or elusive moose. Cameras are always on the ready as at any given moment, the Hosts or fellow guests might call out “bear on the left!” or “eagle overhead!” While guests revel in the natural drama unfolding outside their window, engaging Rocky Mountaineer Hosts entertain with colorful tales and history of the passing regions to complement the journey. Guest service provided by the Hosts is second to none and they never miss a beat when it comes to pointing out historical landmarks along the way.
Rocky Mountaineer is the only privately owned passenger train that travels along the historical Canadian Pacific Railway, on which the Last Spike was driven to complete the national railway. The train slows down at the famous site in Craigellachie, BC, allowing guests to capture a bit of Canadian history with their cameras. The Spiral Tunnels is another famous landmark that signifies Canada’s determination to unite the country by rail. Travelling through the engineering feat from the early 1900’s is certainly an exclusive experience available on Rocky Mountaineer’s First Passage to the West route.
In the lower-level of the GoldLeaf Service coaches, internationally-acclaimed chefs create outstanding Western Canadian dishes with the finest and freshest regional ingredients. Guests enjoy a classic dining setting with delectable menu selections such as wild Pacific salmon, prime Alberta beef, and locally sourced vegetables. Each bi-level dome coach has its own galley kitchen, in which croissants are freshly baked every morning and a three course lunch, complete with a decadent dessert, is prepared. Award-winning wines from British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley are available throughout the journey and are perfectly paired with each dish.
SilverLeaf Service is the newest level of service and 2015 will marks its third year as part of the company’s offering. Guests travel in style in the spacious single level dome cars with plush seats and extra-large picture windows. Dedicated Hosts provide Rocky Mountaineer’s signature world-class service and engaging storytelling of the passing regions. Hot hearty breakfast is followed by a scrumptious lunch, paired with locally brewed beer and wine, while the wild beauty of Canada’s west acts as the perfect backdrop for the culinary adventure.
Rocky Mountaineer has an experience in store for all types of travelers, be it a foodie, historical or rail buff, or a nature fanatic. There are over 65 vacation packages highlighting the stunning destinations in Western Canada and beyond and an endless list of add-ons to customize each holiday to suit everyone’s needs.
One of the company’s most popular packages is the Circle Journey which includes all of its exciting destinations, such as Jasper, Lake Louise, Banff, Whistler, Vancouver, and Seattle. With at least four days on the rail, there is no limit to the wildlife sightings and breathtaking scenery along the journey.
The 2016 season brings Rocky Mountaineer guests the newly upgraded Rainforest to Gold Rush route, which now offers three days on rail from Vancouver to Whistler, then onto Quesnel and ending in the charming mountain town of Jasper. In 2013, the company launched its new route, Coastal Passage, exploring the marvels of the Pacific Northwest coastline. It signifies the company’s first time crossing borders, connecting Seattle, WA to the Canadian Rockies. There is a sense of tranquility along this route, as the train travels alongside the glistening Pacific Ocean, dotted with fishing boats, paddle boarders, and the occasional seal peeking out from the water.
With the Port of Seattle being the one of the busiest ports for Alaskan Cruises, Coastal Passage is a perfect option for those wanting to combine their rail vacations with an Alaskan cruise. From the jaw-dropping icebergs, to the cosmopolitan cities of Vancouver and Seattle, to the majestic Canadian Rockies, Rocky Mountaineer’s Rail and Cruise vacations truly are two dream vacations in one.
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