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Rocky Mountaineer - Journey Through The Clouds Outdoor Adventures

11 days Guided Tours

Virgin Holidays' view

When a simple road trip just won’t cut it, this journey gives you the best of all worlds — taking you by rail, road, water, air, and even ice, so you get the full Western Canada experience. The al fresco adventures roll from start to finish — from travelling over a glacier to hovering above the Rockies in a helicopter. Not all the adventures are adrenaline-packed though. You’ll raft down Bow River in Banff, spying views of mountains and hoodoos, and you’ll canoe across Lake Louise. And, of course, you’ll get the ultimate ‘put your feet up’ adventure on the Rocky Mountaineer, seeing the sights from the comfort of your carriage that’s world-famous for its luxury and lookout stops.

Itinerary

Day 1: Vancouver Arrival

Arrive in Vancouver and spend time exploring this scenic city on your own. Spend 2 nights in Vancouver.

Day 2: Vancouver

Today, select your choice of one of two outdoor activity options. Enjoy a 5-hour guided cycling tour of Vancouver’s highlights, and experience the best of Vancouver food, history, ecology and culture while being active. The 23km ride takes in the seawall and rainforest of Stanley Park, English Bay, Granville Island (including the Aquabus ferry), False Creek, Chinatown, Gastown, and Coal Harbour. Helmet and bicycle rental are included.

Please note: guests will need to make their own way to/from 648 Hornby St. for the tour.

Or experience the Howe Sound coastline from a 30ft rigid hull inflatable boat on a “Sea Safari”. With the refreshing sea mist on your face, you'll take in the towering cliffs of Anvil Island, the seals at play at Pam Rocks, the caves of Bowen Island, and many more picturesque sights only seen from the water. Spend an unforgettable 2 hours cruising along the water’s surface, surrounded by BC’s unique Coastal Mountains, taking pictures with seals bathing in the sun, or cruising through the waves on our natural roller coaster. Includes hotel pick-up/drop-off transportation. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure to explore Vancouver. 

Day 3: Vancouver – Kamloops

Travel onboard the Rocky Mountaineer from the coastal city of Vancouver to Kamloops, in the heart of British Columbia’s interior. On today’s journey you will see dramatic changes in scenery, from the lush green fields of the Fraser Valley, through forests and winding river canyons surrounded by the peaks of the Coast and Cascade Mountains, to the desert-like environment of the BC Interior. Highlights include the rushing waters of Hell’s Gate in the Fraser Canyon and the steep slopes and rock sheds along the Thompson River. Your day concludes as the Rocky Mountaineer travels along the shores of Kamloops Lake into Kamloops. Overnight in Kamloops. (B/L)

Day 4: Kamloops – Jasper

Your journey continues north and east to the mighty Canadian Rockies and the province of Alberta. Once again you will be surrounded by dramatic scenery as you follow the banks of the North Thompson River through the Monashee and Cariboo Mountains, climbing ever nearer to the high peaks of the Continental Divide. Today’s highlights include Mount Robson, at 3,954 metres (12,972 feet) the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies, Pyramid Falls, and the climb over the Yellowhead Pass into Jasper National Park. Your rail journey ends this evening on arrival in the resort town of Jasper. Spend the next 2 nights in Jasper. (B/L)

Day 5: Jasper 

Jasper National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the Canadian Rockies’ largest national park. This morning you will enjoy a scenic half-day tour of some of the park’s natural attractions and rugged peaks, and perhaps catch a glimpse of the wildlife that calls this region home.
In the afternoon, experience the majestic scenery of Jasper National Park on foot. A 3-hour guided nature walk will feature a spectacular array of rolling hills, jagged peaks, forests, meadows, marshes, streams and stunning glacial lakes. Your licensed interpreter will lead this leisurely walk as you explore the abundant flora and fauna along these routes that often offer incredible opportunities to spot wildlife. Marvel at snow-capped peaks during the month of June, in mid-summer the forest and alpine meadows are ablaze in glorious wild ower shades of red, blue, yellow and white. By late August and through the month of September, the mountain landscapes glow with the red, orange, and gold of larch and aspen trees. Transportation to and from the trailhead is included. The remainder of the day is free for you to explore more of Jasper independently. Overnight in Jasper. (B)

Day 6: Jasper – Lake Louise

Travel to Lake Louise via one of the most scenic highways in the world, the Icefields Parkway. Among the highlights are Bow Lake, the Columbia Icefield, Glacier Skywalk and Athabasca Falls. The Columbia Icefield is one of the largest accumulations of ice south of the Arctic Circle and one of the most accessible icefields in North America. Here you'll ride on an Ice Explorer to the middle of the Athabasca Glacier to learn more about its geological features. Lunch is included at the Columbia Icefield Glacier Discovery Centre. Afterwards, a brief stop will be made at Bow Lake before arriving in Lake Louise this afternoon. Spend the next 2 nights in Lake Louise. (L)

Day 7: Lake Louise

Canoes are a historic way in which to experience Lake Louise as they have been on the water for over a century. Paddle on the sparkling emerald surface of the lake from the comfort of an authentic 26’ cedar strip group canoe. As you journey across the lake, your guide will share local stories about the wildlife, the indigenous people, and the early explorers. Enjoy the remainder of your day at your leisure in Lake Louise. Popular activities include hiking in the mountains or simply relaxing and taking in the magnificent views. 

Day 8: Lake Louise – Banff

This morning you are free to explore beautiful Lake Louise on your own. After lunch, a half-day tour takes you into Yoho National Park to view some of its natural wonders. Among the attractions are the Spiral Tunnels, Emerald Lake and a natural rock bridge that spans the Kicking Horse River. At the end of the tour you will be transferred to Banff. Spend the next 2 nights in Banff.

Please note: while departure from The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise will be approximately 2:00pm, scheduled check-out time is normally 12:00pm. Your luggage will be stored upon check-out and you are free to enjoy the amenities of the hotel before the tour departs.

Day 9: Bow River Raft Float Trip

Early this afternoon, make your way to the launch point at the base of Bow Falls (less than 2.5km from downtown Banff, near the Fairmont Banff Springs Golf Course). You will travel approximately 7km down the Bow River encountering extraordinary views of Buffalo, Rundle, Cascade and Tunnel Mountains. Float past the Hoodoos, and your interpretive guide will land the rafts near the towering north face of Mount Rundle. This gentle raft float is the perfect way to intimately encounter this natural mountain beauty. You will see and experience the Canadian Rocky Mountains and perhaps have the opportunity to view wildlife in their natural habitat. A shuttle bus will return you to your starting point on a scenic 10-minute mountain meadow drive.
The morning before the float trip, and the remainder of the day are free for you to explore more of Banff independently. Soak in the mineral pools at Upper Hot Springs, enjoy a nature walk on nearby mountain trails, visit Banff’s historic museums, or play a round of golf at The Fairmont Banff Springs. 

Day 10: Banff – Calgary 

Today you will enjoy a full-day tour concluding in Calgary. Begin the morning with a sightseeing tour of Banff. Among the points of interest are Bow Falls, Lake Minnewanka, Surprise Corner and the Hoodoos. Banff Gondola included. Continue on to Kananaskis for the highlight of today’s adventure, a 12-minute Panoramic Helicopter Tour over the remarkable landscape of the Rockies. Overnight in Calgary.

Day 11: Calgary Departure

Your vacation ends upon checkout from your Calgary hotel.

 

This tour also operates Westbound - Calgary to Vancouver.

 

B - Breakfast
L - Lunch 

Dates & prices

The table below shows our escorted tour departure dates.

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Prices are described as Guide prices on this website and may be higher or lower due to availability and date of departure.

Prices are for departure dates listed, ex-UK and are per adult based on two adults travelling and sharing a standard room and with return economy flights where stated. Single room and flight prices are available at a supplement.

Please note some tours are subject to minimum numbers, please call our travel experts or visit your local retail store for full details as well as our latest prices.

Tour information

Please click here to download a pdf of the Eastbound itinerary and additional tour notes

Please click here to download a pdf of the Westbound itinerary and additional tour notes

Pre/Post Tour information

If you would like to extend your trip or make the tour part of a longer holiday, we can easily add on a pre or post night stays for you. Our Sales Team will work with you to arrange the best connecting flights and book any additional hotel stays. Simply tell us what you’d like and we can arrange it.

Time difference

GMT -5 hours Eastern Canada 
GMT -8 hours Western Canada

Tour inclusions

  • 2 days Rocky Mountaineer SilverLeaf or GoldLeaf service
  • 3 breakfasts and 3 lunches
  • 10 nights hotel accommodation
  • Vancouver Lookout
  • Zodiac tour on Howe Sound or a guided cycling tour of Vancouver
  • Jasper Breakfast Tour
  • Guided hiking in Jasper
  • Icefields Parkway Tour, including Ice Explorer
  • Voyaguer canoeing on Lake Louise
  • Yoho National Park
  • Bow River raft float trip
  • Banff to Calgary tour, including Banff Gondola
  • Panoramic Helicopter Tour
  • Calgary Tower
  • Luggage handling and rail station transfers in Vancouver, Kamloops and Jasper
  • National parks pass

Tour exclusions

  • International flight in economy class, including all UK and overseas airport taxes and applicable fuel surcharges
  • Flight upgrades and airport transfers in the UK
  • Meals, other than specified
  • Activities, other than specified
  • Gratuities for rail, hotel and transfer staff
  • Fuel surcharges
  • GST as applicable
  • Insurance
  • Airport transfer upon arrival and on departure
  • Items of a personal nature such as drinks, laundry, tips and gratuities, video camera fees at monuments
  • The required Canada Electronic Authorization (eTA)

Dining inclusions

3 breakfasts and 3 lunches included.

Accommodation

Accommodation listed on the itinerary is a mix of 3-4V graded properties. Please note some tours are up to 3 weeks in duration and there may be some nights when staying in remote locations e.g. the National Parks, when the ‘V’ rating may vary. Hotels are subject to change up until 30 days prior to departure, but you will be advised of any changes.

Visa requirements

Electronic Travel Authorisation (eTA)

Visitors travelling to or transiting through Canada by air are now expected to get an electronic travel authorisation (eTA) to enter Canada. If you’re arriving into Canada by air from either the UK or another destination e.g. the USA, you’ll need an eTA. This costs CA$7 and lasts for 5 years or until your passport expires, whichever is first. If you’re travelling by land or sea, you won’t need an eTA when you enter Canada. However, you must travel with acceptable travel documents and identification, i.e. your passport.

For more information on eTA system, and to apply online, visit the official Canadian government website.