I'd love to see the whole of Canada and wondered about doing this via train, going from Vancouver to Toronto (I know it's a HUGE country - so just want to get a flavour of it)
I know it's about 5 days and nights via train but I wondered about doing the journey over a couple of weeks, stopping off overnight at different parts along the way. Has anyone done this before?
Or - alternatively - can anyone recommend a a better way to see the country than train??
The best way to see O Canada is Via rail. For a 2 week itinerary I would recommend considering either a Via Rail pass or John Steel Rail Tours. You definitely want to spend at least a full day and preferably two in beautiful Vancouver. Then proceed
Pacific Central station for an evening departure aboard VIA Rail's Canadian. As the train heads into the night, relax in your Sleeper Plus Class car accommodations, in the lounges or the dome car. Overnight on board the train.
Next day Breakfast is served in the dining car. Watch for wildlife and magnificent Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies. Late afternoon arrival in Jasper, and transfer to your hotel. Remainder of day is yours to explore this picturesque mountain resort. Overnight Jasper — breakfast & lunch in dining car included, prior to overnight and I highly recommend the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge a 700 acre year-round luxury mountain resort which wraps around the shores of pristine Lac Beauvert. If you are into astronomy the have a great package.
The next day Full-day sightseeing tour of Icefields Parkway, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Breathtaking scenery, from soaring mountain peaks to broad valley vistas, greets you at every turn on this 142 mile (230 km) scenic highway. Includes Athabasca Falls, Columbia Icefields Center, Crowfoot Glacier, Peyto Lake, plus a once-in-a-lifetime ride aboard the Ice Explorer, a vehicle specially designed to traverse the glacier. Overnight Lake Louise at the finest hotel in Canada Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise.
Next day sleep in and order room service or visit the Gold Floor Lounge if you upgrade for a wonderful and very well presented Breakfast then Mid-day pick up for Mountains, Lakes and Waterfalls Tour. Visit beautiful Yoho National Park, The Great Divide, and Takakaw Falls. Overnight Banff. Again I highly recommend Fairmont Banff Springs. By now you will be thrilled for a treat this evening at their spa. -Reminiscent of the hot springs that beckoned travellers over 100 years ago. The next day Discover Banff with morning half-day motor coach tour, including Cave and Basin National Historic Site. You really should also ride the Banff Gondola. almost 6 years ago
My itinerary continues with stops at all the Fairmont Hotels - Next stop Calgary the hotel a Fairmont at the train station, then Mid-day departure on VIA Rail's train Canadian. Once again, you'll travel in Sleeper Plus Class car accommodations, with scenic dome, lounge, and dining car privileges. As the train leaves the Rockies, it heads eastward across vast, wide-open prairies. Overnight VIA Rail — dinner in dining car on to Winnepeg Glimpse out your sleeping accommodation's wide picture window for early morning panoramic views of Saskatchewan's Qu'Appelle Valley, followed by brief late evening stop in Winnipeg. Overnight VIA Rail — breakfast, lunch & dinner in dining car boutique shopping or stunning cityscapes in Winnepeg and dinner at the fabulous Velvet Glove. Next day As you continue eastward, you'll notice a dramatic change of scenery as the train enters Ontario and the rugged Canadian Shield. Take photos from the scenic dome, chat with friends old and new over meals in the dining car, and relax in comfort in your Sleeper Plus Class car accommodations, all while Canada's grand wilderness passes by the train's large picture windows. Overnight VIA Rail — breakfast, lunch & dinner in dining car -
Landscapes transition from remote wilderness to the most populated region in Canada, with morning arrival into the nation's largest city, Toronto.
Overnight Royal,York Fairmont Hotel.
You definitely want to enroll in the Fairmont Presidents Club and look into Via Rail or John Steel rail tours. almost 6 years ago
Yes, you can take the VIA Rail train from Vancouver to Toronto or visa versa. I've done sections of it, but not the whole thing in one shot.
A few things you might like to know:
-The train runs every other day, so if you get off, you'll have to spend two nights before the next train arrives at your stop (occasionally three nights - depending on the schedule).
-In some cities like Vancouver and Winnipeg, the station is in the downtown core, so accommodation and city type attractions are close by. In other cities like Saskatoon, the station is hell and gone from anywhere - you'll likely need to call a cab for a ride. When I was there I did not see any other transportation options, and there were no taxis waiting to pick people up.
-The train is VERY slow. If you are enjoying the scenery, that might not be a bad thing. For example, you can drive from Vancouver to Kamloops in about 3 1/2 hours, but the train takes all night to get there (I think leaving Vancouver around 8 pm and getting to Kamloops at 6 am).
-Each of the provinces that the train passes through have very different characters, so IMO they are all worth a visit (even Saskatchewan - it's actually one of my favourite places).
-VIA rail often has deeply discounted tickets (look for "Express Deals") on their site.
-NOTE The economy class seats are VERY uncomfortable to sleep on overnight.
-Canada is a HUGE country, and you'll only be seeing part of it between Vancouver and Toronto. almost 6 years agoAnswered by Misti Ko via WorldNomads.com