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Highlights of the Canadian Rockies in Winter

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Embark on an epic journey through the frozen Rocky Mountains of Canada by rail

11 days From £2,395 per person
Operated by our sister company Great Rail Journeys

2023 Tour code: CWW23

About the tour

On this wintry train adventure, we spend time in vibrant Vancouver, visit incredible Lake Louise and travel through the spectacular frosted scenery of the Canadian Rockies.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 - London and Vancouver

We fly from London Heathrow to Vancouver, checking into our hotel on arrival for a three-night stay.

Day 2 - Discovering Vancouver

We set out on a sightseeing tour of Vancouver today, making our way firstly to Gastown. Named after 'Gassy' Jack Deighton, a Yorkshire seaman who settled here in 1867, today Gastown is a popular downtown area full of cafés, contemporary fashion shops, galleries and more. Continuing to Chinatown, one of the largest of its kind in North America, we soak up the sights, sounds and smells of the Asian inspired streets and food stalls. Finally, we visit Stanley Park, 400 hectares of wild open space that's home to the city's famous and colourful totem poles which celebrate Canada's Native American heritage.

Day 3 - Free time in Vancouver

You're free today to explore further. You could escape the city and take the bus to Grouse Mountain for a ride on the Skyride cable car, which boasts jaw-dropping views across Vancouver's skyline, Pacific Ocean and nearby Gulf Islands. At the top, you can enjoy a range of seasonal activities, including sleigh rides or a snow limo. Perhaps stay closer to the bustle of the city and sample the flavours of Granville Island, which boasts a mouth-watering food market and an array of craft studios.

Day 4 - The Canadian

We transfer to Union Station and board The Canadian for our overnight journey through the majestic Rocky Mountains to Jasper. The Canadian is truly iconic, transporting us in restored stainless steel carriages through incredible landscapes in comfort. During the night, we climb into the foothills of the Rockies, awakening to the sight of glaciers, lakes, plunging canyons, frozen waterfalls and soaring snow-covered peaks illuminated by the sun's first rays of the day.

Day 5 - Jasper

We arrive in Jasper, a quaint mountain town at the edge of the wilderness and located in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. The town is surrounded by tree-covered mountains, and at this time of year, is blanketed in snow. With free time to look around after checking into our hotel for two nights, you could take a walk through the wintry streets, admiring quaint houses and small shops. It isn't unusual to even see a family of elk crossing the road.

Day 6 - Maligne Canyon

The Rockies are transformed by snow and ice in winter and take on a truly magical beauty and today we make a visit to Maligne Canyon, a 164-feet deep gorge of sheer limestone walls that's home to wildlife such as grey wolves, hoary marmot, caribou and moose. During our time here, we take part in an ice walk with a local guide, heading to the canyon floor to explore frozen waterfalls, ice caves and incredible ice formations and learn about mysterious Medicine Lake. We enjoy a picnic lunch as we go, warming up afterwards with a traditional treat of hot chocolate and smores.

Day 7 - Banff

Leaving Jasper and its national park behind, we begin the drive to Banff, travelling along the world-famous Icefields Parkway - a 144-mile road that links Banff with Jasper. Travelling along a lake-lined valley, past many of the highest and most rugged peaks in the Rockies, we pass by the Columbia Icefields and the Athabasca Glacier. Along the way, we stop at Lake Louise, which at this time of year is completely frozen over, to admire the views of soaring peaks covered in verdant pine forests which slope away from the lakeshore.

Day 8 - Tour of Banff

Today's excursion takes us on a tour around the natural wonders of Banff. Exploring with a local guide, we visit Lake Minnewanka, Two Jack Lake, where we're greeted by a stunning backdrop of emerald-green waters and a sweeping panorama of Mount Rundle, the Banff Hoodoos, a cluster of needle-like sedimentary rocks, Surprise Corner, which, as the name suggests, delivers spectacular and surprising views of and Bow Falls. We also take a ride on the Banff Gondola, a cable car that transports us to the summit of Sulphur Mountain to marvel at the wintry scenes laid out beneath us.

Day 9 - Free time in Banff

Enjoy a free day to make the most of wintertime in the Rocky Mountains. There are plenty of seasonal activities to keep you occupied, including snow show tours, horse and carriage rides and husky-hauled sleigh rides through the snowy countryside. If you're a keen skier, you may like to make your way into the surrounding peaks to ski a few trails. Or perhaps something a little more sedate is more your pace, in which case there are plenty of cosy cafés and restaurants where you can while away the time.

Day 10 - Calgary

We transfer to Calgary today, where we board our flight back to London Heathrow.

Day 11 - London

We land in the UK and our holiday draws to a close.

Additional information

Departure times

Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. 

We will write to you around 10 weeks before your departure date with the precise meeting times for your tour group.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.

Hotels

Sheraton Wall Centre hotel, Vancouver

Sheraton Wall Centre hotel, Vancouver

View hotel

Elk and Avenue, Banff

View hotel

Train

The Canadian

Enhance your holiday

Upgrades

Flight upgrades
UK rail connections
London hotels
Upgrade your cabin to a Sleeper Plus private cabin
Highlights of the Canadian Rockies in Winter

Embark on an epic journey through the frozen Rocky Mountains of Canada by rail

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Lynne Broadley
Lynne
Luke Simpson
Luke
Rhianna Coote
Rhianna