Rockies Rail Adventure rail journey 

See the best of the Rocky Mountains on this seven night journey from Calgary to Vancouver, travelling on sections of VIA Rail’s epic The Canadian route.

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10 nights
Calgary, Banff, Jasper, Vancouver
Rail Journey

Recommended itinerary


Your city set off point

Set in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies, Alberta’s largest city give you a prairie pretty, skyscraper strewn cosmopolitan start to your trip and it’s worth spending a couple of nights here. Summer brings slow cruises down the river, nostalgic rides on Heritage Park’s paddle wheeler and cowboys and cowgirls to July’s rip-roaring ten-day Calgary Stampede rodeo festival. Winter is for outdoor ice skating, Christmassy carnivals and a classic ice hockey game. Dinners can go either way – perhaps at Calgary Tower’s revolving restaurant or ranch-style and full of rye whiskey in a downtown joint. Included in your trip is the hour and a half coach transfer to Banff where you’re about to meet the best of Mother Nature.

Choose your hotel

Where to stay in Calgary

At the foot of the Calgary Tower, you might choose to go for the modern Le Germain Hotel or the gilded glamour of the Fairmont Palliser. But, if you only fancy an overnight stay in the city, the Applause Hotel by Clique, close to the airport, might be the one for you.


Take it outside in Alberta’s Rocky Mountain

Glass-like lakes and glaciers. Canoeing, rafting, skiing, hiking and biking. Bull elks, bald eagles and brown bears. Banff National Park is outdoor pursuit heaven and Mother Nature’s work of art. With unique experiences on the table, unbeatable scenery every way you turn and utterly captivating wildlife, this will become your favourite adventure.

What to do in Banff

How you’ll spend your days

Two nights in Banff gives you time to soak in steaming hot springs (sunset and sunrise are picture-perfect), ride the Banff gondola, hike through silent forests and explore the alpine town. Included in this trip is the full day one way Banff to Jasper tour cutting through the spine of the Rockies and putting you in the thick of Canada’s two most famous National Parks. Highlights include Lake Louise, Crowfoot Glacier and the Weeping Wall. The captivating clincher? Four hours at the Columbia Icefield where you can walk across the Athabasca Glacier and stride out over the cliff-edge at the Glacier Skywalk.

Where to stay in Banff

The hotels on our hot list

For high in the sky luxurious mountain retreat there’s The Rimrock Resort Hotel and chateau-style Fairmont Banff Springs. In the heart of downtown Banff, Mount Royal Hotel nails comfort and charm whilst Moose Hotel & Suites comes with pinch-me mountain views and two rooftop outdoor hot pools.


Wild in every way

Canada’s largest national park and second largest Dark Sky Preserve in the world is where rosy-cheeked adventure meets nights salted with stars. Fall in love with Jasper’s fairytale lakes, mountain goats, backcountry trails, ancient ice glaciers, moss-covered canyons and meringue-like mountain peaks and get ready to get away from everything urban.

What to do in Jasper

Lakes, mountains and dark skies

Whether you’re looking to challenge yourself with adventure or prefer to soak up the serenity of Maligne Lake, we recommend at least one night in Jasper. Try canoeing, canyoning and white-water rafting or adopt a slower pace with a scenic float tour or an aerial ride on the Jasper SkyTram. Early morning and late afternoon are the best times to spot wildlife – moose, mountain goats, marmots and mule deer – and evenings are made for looking up; unobstructed by pollution, the sky puts on a full display of constellations and galaxies.

Where to stay in Jasper

Mountain views all around

Decide between a classic and cosy stay in a chateau or lodge – Marmot Lodge and Chateau Jasper both come with an indoor pool – or the frills of a luxury retreat – Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge, whose lakeside grounds are roughly the size of New York’s Central Park, boasts a golf course and a spa.

The Canadian – Jasper to Vancouver

VIA Rail

Travelling long distances by train has a special kind of appeal and you’ll get to wave goodbye to The Rockies by rail, spending a full day and night aboard The Canadian, arriving 24 hours later in the green and gorgeous city of Vancouver.

Where you’ll sleep

Sleeper Plus to Prestige

Sleeper Plus Class accommodation includes fine dining, exclusive use of the Park and Skyline Cars lounges and domes and a shower in each sleeping car. Upper Berth accommodation is included in your trip and features daytime seating and single upper berth sleeping accessed via ladder at night whilst Lower Berth accommodation is similar in style but with lower berth sleeping. Private Cabins are also available as well as Prestige Sleeper Class cabins which boast leather couches that transform into a Murphy bed, a flat-screen television, a private toilet and shower, 24-hour concierge and the option to reserve sightseeing chairs in the Panorama Car.


Western Canada’s outdoor city

Set on the west coast of Canada and surrounded by water and mountains, Vancouver is a treasure trove of beaches, parks and forests. This is a city where you’ll get up close with BC’s marine life – orca and humpback whales, elephant seals, Pacific white-sided dolphins as much as you’ll hike across nature trails and bike and kayak along the Seawall. Vancouver is also a city with wholesome urban soul where you’ll find many great galleries, museums, craft breweries, coffee shops and farm-to-fork restaurants.

Granville Island

What to do in Vancouver

Whale watching and waterfront restaurants

Three nights in Vancouver gives you enough time to slurp oysters in a waterfront restaurant, fall in love with Gastown’s 19th century neighbourhood, hit the beach at Kitsilano and find the Douglas firs and totem poles in much-loved Stanley Park. Want a steep but spellbindingly scenic hike? Follow the Grouse Grind trail up to its eponymous mountain and catch the cable car back. Prefer others to do the work? See the skyline on a seaplane flight or book the Capilano Suspension Bridge and Park tour which takes you from Vancouver’s waterfront landmarks to a rainforest Treetop Adventure sauntering in the clouds.

Stanley Park

Where to stay in Vancouver

Choose your hotel

Georgian Court Hotel, a chic bolthole just ten minutes from hip Yaletown, comes with complimentary bike hire so you can make the most of your time in this cycle-friendly city. Prefer an indoor pool and spa? Just minutes from the Seawall, The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver has both. Or opt for a stylish riff on the nautical, staying at the Pan Pacific, a glass ocean-liner-style hotel complete with shops, an outdoor pool and North Shore mountains views.