Duration: 12 Days
Experience extraordinary beauty and adventure on this affordable Canadian holiday . Travel from the sea port of Vancouver via scenic train through some of Canada’s most breathtaking landscapes. Enjoy guided sightseeing in Vancouver, then board your Rocky Mountaineer train for a 2-day trip through spectacular scenery following the Fraser River through snowcapped peaks to Kamloops. Travel through the Selkirk Mountains before entering gorgeous Yoho National Park, and wind through the Spiral tunnels before your train climbs Kicking Horse Pass. Cross the Continental Divide before entering Alberta and Banff National Park and onto Lake Louise Village for a night.
Spend two nights in Banff with many options to play golf, horseback ride, hike, or relax at the hot springs. Look for big horn sheep, deer, bear, and the elusive wolf, perhaps via helicopter on an optional excursion. See the natural bridge spanning Kicking Horse River and visit Emerald and Moraine Lakes. Ascend Bow Pass for views of glistening Peyto Lake, then ride aboard the Ice Explorer over the 750-foot-thick ice of the Columbia Icefield. Travel through magnificent Jasper National Park, and arrive at the base of 12,972-foot Mount Robson on your way to Sun Peaks. Follow the routes of the historic Gold Rush and the fur traders on your way to Whistler. Take the ferry crossing to Victoria for a visit to beautiful Butchart Gardens and sightseeing followed by a day at leisure. Return to Vancouver via ferry, and celebrate your fantastic holiday in Canada!
- Adventure is knocking with everything you need for perfectly affordable touring. Cosmos includes hand-selected accommodations, guided sightseeing, and seamless transportation between destinations—with value-minded travel lovers in mind. Explore with expert Cosmos Tour Directors and Local Guides, and private, first-class, air-conditioned motorcoach with free Wi-Fi where available. Enhance your free time to explore like a local with your CosmosGO mobile app!
- 2-day, all-daylight rail journey on board the Rocky Mountaineer® in SilverLeaf Service (GoldLeaf Service upgrades are available) and a ferry crossing to/from Vancouver Island are included.
- Visiting and participating in activities in this region may be subject to favourable weather conditions and vendor dates of operation.
- Maximum elevation on tour: 7,500 ft.
Welcome to Vancouver! Your Tour Director is on hand late this afternoon to answer any questions.
This morning, an included city tour highlights Stanley Park, Chinatown, the harbour, beaches, and more. The remainder of the day is at leisure. You could take a water-taxi to lively Granville Island with its outdoor markets, street musicians, and waterfront cafés, or visit historic Gastown with its steam-powered clock, antique shops, and art galleries!
An exciting morning as you board the Rocky Mountaineer for a 2-day, all-daylight, classic rail journey. The train travels through some of Canada's most spectacular scenery. Follow the Fraser River through snowcapped mountains, eventually arriving at Kamloops. (B,L)
Reboard the train and prepare for spectacular sights, such as Shuswap Lake, the Selkirk Mountains, and Yoho National Park. The train follows railway history as it rolls by Craigellachie, through Rogers Pass and winds through the Spiral Tunnels while climbing Kicking Horse Pass. Cross the Continental Divide into the province of Alberta. Enter Banff National Park, and journey to Lake Louise Village for an overnight stay. (B,L)
Enjoy a day of scenic grandeur. First visit famous Lake Louise, where green-blue waters form a perfect mirror reflection of Mount Victoria. Then it's on to Natural Bridge and Emerald and Moraine lakes before arriving in Banff. Upon arrival, an orientation tour highlights Banff's unspoiled beauty. Your Tour Director will have suggestions for independent activities.
Today is at leisure. Play golf, horseback ride, hike the many wilderness trails in the area, stroll through Banff, or simply relax at the hot springs. Banff National Park is the perfect place for photographers and wildlife watching, and as a visitor you may be lucky enough to encounter some of these amazing creatures in their natural habitat. If the timing is right, you may spot black bears, grizzlies, or wolves. Your Tour Director will also have suggestions for an optional helicopter ride over the Canadian Rockies and can offer recommendations for dinner.
Scale Bow Pass for splendid views of Peyto Lake, then climb Sunwapta Pass for stunning vistas of alpine meadows, waterfalls, and massive glaciers. Next stop: the Columbia Icefield to ride the Ice Explorer that travels on ice measuring 750 feet thick.
Stand at the base of the awesome 12,972-foot Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies. Travel through British Columbia's Fur Trade and Cariboo regions for tantalising glimpses of the soaring granite mountains. Watch for wildlife as you continue to the internationally renowned Sun Peaks ski resort.
Head south, following the once-treacherous Cariboo Wagon Trail. From Lillooet, "Mile 0 of the Gold Rush Route," our motorcoach will follow the shores of Seton and Duffey Lakes, with a mid-afternoon arrival in Whistler. There are optional activities to choose from, including flightseeing by floatplane over glaciated peaks or a Gondola ride between Whistler and Blackcomb mountains for the perfect bear-spotting perch.
Set sail across the Strait of Georgia to Vancouver Island. In Victoria, sightseeing includes Butchart Gardens, the Empress Hotel, Legislative Buildings, Bastion Square, and Thunderbird Park.
A day at leisure gives you the chance to stroll around the harbour, go shopping on Government Street, or have lunch in one of the many pubs. Your Tour Director will have suggestions for shopping, dining, and additional sightseeing such as a flightseeing excursion with spectacular vistas of downtown Victoria. You may also choose to join an optional wildlife and whale-watching trip where you'll cruise the beautiful waters of the San Juan and Gulf Islands, looking for whales, porpoises, seals, and eagles.
A scenic ferry crossing to the mainland, where the trip ends with guests departing on individual schedules. Transfers to Vancouver International Airport are included. Please schedule flights after 1:30 pm.