North America expert, Claire Gateley, has travelled to all corners of Canada, experiencing memorable moments like whale watching in the waters off Vancouver and taking lunch overlooking mighty Niagara Falls. With a passion for the country and first-hand insight, she loves nothing more than crafting bespoke and unique holidays for Kuoni travellers. She shares her top picks for Canada’s most captivating rail journeys.
“Canada is a country that offers endless discovery with its breathtaking landscapes, iconic lakes and mountains, vibrant cities and intriguing indigenous cultures. The vastness can be daunting when figuring out how best to take in the wonders. A great way to cover some miles is to sit back and relax on one of Canada’s great rail journeys. Ride along heritage routes on world-famous trains – the Rocky Mountaineer or The Canadian – venture into the wilderness onboard the Skeena Train or connect the vibrant cities of the east on the Eastern Corridor route.
Our most popular rail route, onboard a one-of-a-kind vintage luxury train, travels through the most iconic mountain range in the world, the Canadian Rockies. Whilst enjoying the cinematic views, you’ll be looked after by the onboard hosts who’ll ensure you’re well fed and watered throughout your journey. The train covers three spellbinding routes, two of which we’ve created trips for, that combine iconic Rockies towns and culminate in the waterfront city of Vancouver.
The First Passage to the West takes you to or from Lake Louise or Banff; this is the most historic route passing mighty Hell’s Gate, Rogers Pass, Kicking Horse Canyon and the marvellous Spiral Tunnels.
Journey through the Clouds soars to or from the mountain town of Jasper. You’ll pass the highest peak of the Rockies, Mount Robson, spectacular Pyramid Falls and follow the banks of the Thompson River.
The Rainforest to Gold Rush climbs the spectacular sea to sky route from Vancouver to Whistler before continuing to Jasper via Quesnel (or vice versa).
Embark on a four-day journey aboard VIA Rail's 'The Canadian,' traversing 12,500km of tracks to connect the east and west in one remarkable adventure. From fast-paced Toronto across the great Prairie land all the way to Vancouver, you can enjoy all of Canada’s scenic contrast in one swoop. If four days on a train sounds too much, check our Rockies Rail Trip that offers the chance to pick up this iconic train at it most scenic point from Jasper overnight to Vancouver – it’s a great value alternative to cross the majestic Rocky Mountains.
The Skeena Train
Featured in our Western Canada by Rail & Sail itinerary, VIA rail’s ‘The Skeena’ train is an epic 1160km trip allowing you to discover the best of western Canada. The trip covers some of the most remote (but stunning) terrains from Jasper up to the port of Prince Rupert and you’re sure to see real hidden gems and meet some interesting locals. This trip also includes the famed Inside Passage, one of the world’s most scenic ferry routes.
The Corridor Route
Skip the drive and travel by train along what’s warmly known as the corridor route with VIA rail, featured in the Capitals of Canada by Rail. Connecting Canada’s glittering eastern cities: Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Quebec City, you’ll enjoy the contrast of cosmopolitan charms, historic places and the world heritage listed old town of Quebec. This trip is a great all year rounder, with the cities offering incredible sights whatever the season. Add in historic Kingston for the full complement of capitals.”
If you’re ready to sit back, relax and enjoy the views, get in touch with Claire and the team, who’ll share their recommendations and plan an unforgettable adventure exploring Canada by train.