Canada Railway Vacations

Canada offers some of the world's most spectacular train vacations, from short three-day trips to ones several weeks in length. Tourists can experience historic eastern cities such as Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City and Halifax. They can also traverse the vast prairies and foothills of central Canada, or become immersed in the overpowering Canadian Rockies and the North Cascades of British Columbia. In 1977 the major passenger railroad companies, Canadian Pacific and Canadian National, became VIA Rail, which now accounts for most of the passenger travel in Canada.

Eastern Canada Trains

This nine-day "Eastern Rail Classic" begins with two days in Toronto. On your tour bus here, you will see diverse neighborhoods from Chinatown to Cabbagetown, from small ethnic shops to full-block department stores like Hudson's Bay Company's 1,000,000-square-foot flagship store. You could tour the sky-scraping 1,815-foot-tall Canadian National (CN) Tower, the legislative buildings and more. Day 3 takes you to Montreal on VIA Rail's Corridor Train. You spend a night in this bilingual city. Next day your tour bus takes you to places like the Notre Dame Basilica and Mt. Royal. Day 5 takes you by train to Quebec City, the most European of Canada's big cities. Day 6 you travel by train to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where you spend two days absorbing the atmosphere of the Maritimes. This vacation, including seven nights accommodations at fine hotels and one night sleeper on the train, starts at $1,850 (U.S.), per person double occupancy.



VIA Rail Canada Headquarters

3 Place Ville Marie Suite 500

Montreal, QC H3B 2C9 Canada

514-871-6000

canadaviarail.com

Across Canada Vacations

Similar to the "Best of Canada" itinerary and beginning in Toronto or Vancouver, this vacation takes 13 days. It adds Niagara Falls, the Athabasca Glacier and ice fields in the northern Rockies, Lake Louise, Banff and Yoho, then through the Fraser River Valley to Vancouver. Departures westbound begin mid-April and eastbound in early May. Costs begin at $3,380 per passenger, double occupancy.



Rocky Mountaineer

Suite 101-369 Terminal Avenue

Vancouver, British Columbia

Canada V6A 4C4

604-606-7200

rockymountaineer.com

Shorter Train Vacations

Other train vacations are from three to eight days. "Essential Rockies by Train" is six days from Vancouver to Calgary, or reverse. "Active Canadian Rockies by Rail" is only a few days' travel, and then you stay in the mountains for activities such as hiking, sightseeing and mountain climbing. The "Deluxe Rockies Winter Rail Holiday" of seven days takes you to ski resorts. "Rockies Fall Colors" journey is four days in September to enjoy autumnal colors. In the east, a five-day vacation takes you from Toronto to Niagara and Montreal. "The Gaspe Train Adventure" is nine days in Montreal, Quebec City, and then eastern Quebec and the maritime Gaspe Peninsula.



Vacations By Rail

833 West Chicago Avenue,

Chicago, IL 60642-7929

877-929-7245 or 312-546-3673

vacationsbyrail.com

Vacation With Polar Bears

In seven days you travel from Winnipeg, Manitoba, north through vast forests and tundra, past lakes and rivers, and arrive at Churchill on the southern tip of Hudson Bay, "the polar bear capital of the world." Tourists can see the bears and other wild arctic wildlife up close from a "Tundra Buggy." The tour also offers an all-day dog-sledding experience. This vacation is offered only from mid-October to mid-November and costs about $5,800 (U.S.). This includes accommodations at lodges along the way.



Canadian Train Vacations

409 Granville St.

Vancouver, British Columbia

Canada, V6C 1T2

977-771-9079

canadiantrainvacations.com