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Winter getaway through the Rockies by train

Canadian Rockies Winter Escape by Train

6

days

starting fromUS $2,330per person

Star Rating 5

5 of 5 stars (8 reviews)

  • Get this trip plan customized to cover everything you want to see.
  • Learn which places to go and which areas are best during certain times of the year.

On this Canada vacation by train, you’ll be whisked to the heart of the frozen Canadian Rocky mountains. Enjoy authentic Canadian winter activities, like snowshoeing or ice walks into mysterious canyons, to fill your days. In the evening cozy up next to a crackling fire in wonderful mountain accommodations, as the snow falls outside.

Trip at a glance

6 Days / 5 Nights

Arrive Vancouver 1 night Vancouver 1 night VIA Rail 1 night Jasper 1 night Lake Louise 1 night Calgary Depart Calgary

  • View Details Of Each Day

    Sample Itinerary

    Think of this itinerary as just a starting point. Our experienced Canadian Insiders will create a personalized experience for you that matches your schedule, travel style and budget.

    Day 1 – Begin Your Canadian Vacation – Arrive in Vancouver
    The cool, crisp air in Vancouver is invigorating as you start your Canadian winter train vacation. Vancouver’s relatively mild weather is a great introduction to a Canadian winter, but look to the north and discover the winter scene you’ve been dreaming of – Vancouver’s coastal mountains stand before you covered in pure white snow.

    Overnight in Vancouver.

    Day 2 – Board VIA Rail’s Canadian Train – Vancouver to Jasper
    This morning the excitement builds as you board the Canadian Train for your overnight journey to the Canadian Rockies. A panoramic dome car – where you can relax, unwind, and see the sights all around you – is only a short walk from your cabin. Tasty meals are served in an elegant yet casual dining car and chatting over a drink with fellow travelers makes the day pass by all too quickly. Enjoy the journey as you travel further toward the Canadian Rockies.

    Overnight in your private cabin.


    Day 3 – Rockies Winter Wonderland – Arrive in Jasper
    This is one of the most memorable days of your Canadian vacation! Awake onboard the Canadian train, to trees blanketed in fresh snow – with green branches just peeking through – as you near the Canadian Rockies. The snow is glistening as you arrive in the mountain town of Jasper. Step off the train and take a deep breath of the fresh mountain air, you have arrived!

    Choose 1 of the following 2 activities in Jasper today:

    • Option 1: Maligne Canyon Icewalk
    If you’re feeling adventurous, strap on some ice cleats and walk the floor of Maligne Canyon today with a group and expert guide! You’ll be surrounded by icefalls and rock formations that will take your breath away! Learn about Jasper’s Maligne Valley and disappearing Medicine Lake as you walk approx. 2 miles (3km) exploring one of Jasper’s most impressive winter adventures.
    Activity rating: Moderate

    • Option 2: Jasper Food Tour
    Discover the town of Jasper on a walking food tour. On a short 1.5km (1mi) guided walk learn about the town of Jasper while enjoying delicious tastings of food and drink at the best restaurants in Jasper. Tour includes four tasting locations with alcoholic drink pairings.
    Activity rating: Moderate

    Overnight in Jasper.

    Day 4 – Travel the Icefields Parkway and Lake Louise Activities
    Welcome the morning as you head south along the Icefields Parkway today. You’re traveling along one of the most scenic highways in the world, so wipe the sleep from your eyes quickly! This scenery is just a warm up for the sight that greets you in Lake Louise – glaciers, ice castles, and frozen waters, this is truly a magical winter wonderland.

    The following activity is included in Lake Louise today:

    Sleigh Ride at Lake Louise
    A winter sleigh ride by horse drawn carriage is the perfect way to explore Lake Louise. Blankets will keep you warm as you travel slowly to the end of the lake and relive the experience of the original visitors to Lake Louise.
    Activity rating: Easy

    Feature Dinner in Lake Louise
    After an afternoon of exploring the winter playground at Lake Louise warm yourself with an indulgent meal at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. Surrounded by spectacular lake views and attentive service, enjoy a delicious 3-course meal.

    Overnight in Lake Louise.

    Day 5 – Lake Louise Activity and Transfer to Calgary

    Choose 1 of the following 2 activities in Lake Louise today:

    • Option 1: Icefields Helicopter Tour
    Travel back up the Icefields parkway to take part in one of the most remarkable and awe-inspiring helicopter experiences of your life. Deep in the heart of the Canadian Rockies take off for incredible views of glaciers, frozen lakes and the natural beauty of the Canadian Rocky Mountains. Helicopter flight time is 12 minutes with the option to upgrade to longer flight times. Transportation from Lake Louise is included and takes approx. 1.5 hours each way along the scenic icefields parkway.
    Activity rating: Easy

    • Option 2: Lake Louise Dog Sledding

    Travel a full 16 km, or 10 miles, from Banff National Park to Yoho National Park through the Kicking Horse Pass at the Continental Divide. Plenty of time to take photos while travelling through striking mountain landscapes. On the return journey your guide will teach you the basics to mush your team home.
    Activity rating: Moderate

    Insider tip: Ask your Vacation Advisor about extending your helicopter flight length to a 20, 30, or 55 minute tour. Or for those with an adventurous spirit, ask about a once in a lifetime opportunity to add a heli-snowshoe experience to your itinerary.

    Later this afternoon, take a scenic transfer to Calgary, Alberta’s largest city for the final night of your Canadian Rockies winter vacation.

    Overnight in Calgary.

    Day 6 – Depart Calgary Airport
    Much too soon you leave the fresh air and colorful sights of Canada, as your Canadian train vacation comes to an end.
Canadian Rockies Winter Escape by Train – Map

Availability

DecJanFebMar

Places Visited

VancouverJasperIcefields ParkwayLake LouiseCalgary

Accommodation Style

HotelTrain

Your Train Experience

VIA RailSleeper Train

Activity Level

Easy

What you'll love about this trip

  • Winter train journey into the Canadian Rockies

  • Staying at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise

  • Seeing the best of the Canadian Rockies in winter

  • Myriad of wonderful winter activities at your own pace

Common Questions

  • Where am I staying on this trip?

    This trip features a sleeper train journey, and you'll get a comfortable private cabin on the train for the duration of your train ride. The trains feature common lounge areas and dining cars where you can socialize with fellow travelers.

    When not on the train, you'll be staying at various local three to five start hotels or lodges along your route, some of which are very iconic properties with great locations, views and history. All our accommodations are carefully selected by our Canadian Insiders. We'll make sure that wherever you stay, you get the best value and comfort based on the seasonal availability.

  • What is included in the price?

    Typically we include and pre-book all your main trip components so you don't have to worry about your connections, places to stay, or activities on your trip. You'll receive a complete travel package with detailed documentation and our Canadian Insiders remain at your disposal before and during your trip to answer your questions.

  • Can I customize this trip?

    Your trip can be as rich as you'd like, and completely arranged around your interests and needs. The greatest benefit of working with us is our local knowledge. You can request your free trip plan to decide what you'd like to see and do.

    If your trip is a special occasion, we'll make sure it is unforgettable. Or if you're traveling with a group, we'll take care of the logistics so you can share time together stress-free.

  • What are the best ways to travel around Canada?

    Canada has a network of spectacular roadways, train routes, ferry crossings, and float planes. We can arrange for you to travel by car or to sit back and relax.

  • What is the train experience like?

    Because most Canadians typically do not use the train for commuting (as in the US or Europe), the two main rail providers here are driven by tourism. You'll experience the romance of true trans-continental rail travel, with a wide selection of services, accommodation types, and great food.

    Featured train experiences:

    • VIA Rail is Canada's national train provider, with routes running Coast to Coast and through remote parts of northern Canada. The type of train depends on your journey, and can vary from the classic trans-continental sleeper trains to daylight trains with overnight stops.
    • Sleeper Trains feature a once in a lifetime adventure of sleeping on the train in comfortable cabins. You can relax in your private onboard accommodations, or enjoy local wines and chef-prepared meals in the dining car during this unforgettable trip.
  • When is the best time to see wildlife?

    That depends on the destination and type. As a rule, the main feeding and migration seasons are best for wildlife experiences. Tell us which animals interest you and we'll make your trip coincide with the best viewing season.

  • Is this an escorted tour?

    With the exception of our guided wildlife trips, our vacations are not typically 'escorted.' We combine the best of both worlds – the reassurance of seamless connections, customer service support, and scheduled activities, plus the freedom of 'independent' travel. You are not tied into a specific group, or a rigid daily itinerary. This allows us to personalize your trip to suit your occasion, interests, and timeframe.

  • Will it be cold when I visit Canada in summer?

    The temperature varies from mild to hot, depending on location. Northern Canada will range between 50°F to 64°F (10°C – 18°C) in summer. The interior of BC, prairies, Ontario and Quebec can reach temperatures around 95°F (35°C). Canada's west coast, mountain regions, and Maritimes enjoy milder summer temperatures. They range on average from 59°F to 77°F (15°C – 25°C).

  • How much does my trip cost?

    All our trips can be customized to fit your schedule and budget. The price depends on travel season, train service, hotel level, and the sightseeing tours you choose. Request your free trip plan which will provide you with a detailed cost estimate.

  • What's Included

    What's Included in the Price

    These are the places and experiences to look forward to on this trip.

    Accommodations:
    • 4 nights of hotel accommodation
    • 1 night onboard The Canadian Train, in a private cabin for 1 or 2

    Train Experiences:
    • Sleeper Plus Class, onboard The Canadian Train between Vancouver and Jasper (includes access to dome car)

    Jasper Experiences:
    • Choose 1 of 3:
    1. Maligne Canyon Icewalk
    2. Jasper Food Tour

    Lake Louise Experiences:
    • Sleigh Ride at Lake Louise
    PLUS
    • Choose 1 of 2:
    1. Icefields Helicopter Tour
    2. Lake Louise Dog Sledding

    Meal Inclusions:
    • Meals onboard VIA Rail
    • Feature Dinner in Lake Louise

    Transfer Inclusions:
    • All airport and train station transfers
    • Transfer between Jasper and Lake Louise
    • Transfer from Lake Louise to the Calgary airport hotel

    Other Inclusions:
    • Documentation package
    • Gratuities for private transfer and tours (unless otherwise noted)
    • Fresh Tracks Canada customer service – from the time you book, you are assigned your own personal Vacation Coordinator whom you can reach out to with any questions or requests.

    Important Trip and Schedule Notes:
    Comfort and Superior hotels include scheduled coach transfers in the Rockies. Deluxe hotels are paired with private car and driver transfers in the Rockies.
    • Occasionally, activities may vary at time of travel due to weather conditions. Your Vacation Advisor will provide advice on the best timing for outdoor winter activities.
    • Activity options are limited over Dec 24–26 and on Jan 1, your Vacation Advisor will provide advice on your available options.
    Train schedules are subject to change and delays may occur.

    Not Included
    • Meals and activities unless otherwise mentioned
    • Airfare (but don’t hesitate to ask for help)
    • Gratuities (unless otherwise indicated)
    • Taxes
    • Trip Cancellation Insurance (highly recommended)

    Ideas to customize this trip

    Think of this trip as just a starting point. These are some of the experiences you can add-on to personalize your trip.

    Add on a longer, full day dog sledding experience in Jasper.
    • Optional winter activities, including skiing (downhill and cross-country), spa treatments or skating.
    • Add on a multi-day
    Northern Lights experience in the Yukon.
    • Extend your helicopter tour over the Icefields by adding on stop for snowshoeing or a stop at a frozen lake.
  • Prices & Dates

    Trip Start Dates

    2018/2019 – Vancouver Start Dates
    Dec  13, 17, 20*, 24, 27, 31
    Jan  3, 7, 10, 14, 17, 21, 24, 28, 31
    Feb  4, 7, 11*, 14, 18, 21, 25, 28
    Mar  4, 7, 11, 14, 18, 21, 25

    2018/2019 – Calgary Start Dates
    Dec  14, 17, 21, 24*, 28, 31
    Jan  4, 7, 11, 14, 18, 21, 25, 28
    Feb  1, 4, 8, 11, 15*, 18, 22, 25
    Mar  1, 4, 8, 11, 15, 18, 22, 25

    Note:
    * Itinerary and price variations may occur for travel over Christmas, New Years and holidays. Give us a call for additional information.

    Pricing For This Trip

    Prices listed may vary by departure date, hotel class and degree of personalization. Please speak with one of our travel advisors to get a personalized quote.

    Comfort Level Hotels
    from US $2,330to US $3,218per person

    Our Comfort Level vacations include our favorite 3 star hotels, in great locations. Combined with our unique sightseeing tours and personalized service, you’ll receive exceptional value, a step above what you might expect anywhere else.

    Superior Level Hotels
    from US $2,490to US $3,866per person

    Our Superior Level provides amazing value for clients wanting something more upscale but not at the price of a top-end 5 star resort. Superior level hotels are some of our favorites because of the character and unique charm that you won't find at the average chain hotel. Unique tours and seamless transfers complete your itinerary.

    Fresh Tracks Favorite
    Deluxe Level Hotels
    from US $3,590to US $5,065per person

    On our Deluxe Level vacation, it's likely you'll be staying at one of the iconic Canadian Fairmont Hotels in a room with a view. Built for the Canadian Pacific Railway in the early 20th century, these hotels are luxurious and full of history – ensuring an experience you'll never forget. Enjoy unique sightseeing experiences and the insider detail that only Fresh Tracks Canada can provide.

  • Accommodations

    Accommodation Options

    These are examples of this trip's accommodation choices. Please call us for the full list or advice on how to customize your experience.

    Sawridge Inn - Exterior of hotel

    Sawridge Inn

    An example of our Superior accommodations

    Jasper's Sawridge Inn is a favourite among travellers looking for understated luxury at affordable prices. Unwind in newly renovated rooms with marble bathrooms and take a dip in the large indoor pool.

    Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge - The Lodge

    Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge

    An example of our Deluxe Lodge accommodations

    The Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge is it's own Canadian wilderness resort. The property is made up of many buildings with different room types throughout the resort. Relax by the lake, or enjoy a round of golf on the beautiful Stanley Thompson Golf Course, or enjoy a game of ice hockey on the lodge's pond. Be sure to keep your eyes open for Elk as they walk past your building!

    Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise - Exterior of Chateau

    Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise

    An example of our Comfort, Superior, and Deluxe accommodations

    The 5 star Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise is undoubtedly a beautiful and impressive hotel. Its amazing location overlooking beautiful Lake Louise and the distant mountains can not be compared. There are a variety of restaurant types, so you can do casual or fine dining as you choose. Strolling around the lake, renting a canoe, riding horses, or hiking up to the tea house are all great summer activities. In winter choose from snow shoeing, skating, skiing or taking a sleigh ride around the lake.

  • Customer Reviews  (8)

    The scenery was epic

    Star Rating 4
    March 21, 2018

    Read full review...

    The scenery was epic and the tours really helped my family understand what life is like in a cold environment. We experienced things we never would at home.

    No stress and all supremely fun and awesome trip!

    Star Rating 5
    March 17, 2018

    Read full review...

    No stress and all supremely fun and awesome trip! No need to fuss around with researching and booking accommodations, transfers, entrance fees/tickets, reservations or making frantic calls to modify itinerary. Every step of the way I was in and out of different locations and activities without a hitch. The trip was seriously amazing, exactly the way I envisioned it and received friendly and above exceptional service the whole way.

    The ice walk was amazing, as was the snowshoeing and dog sledding

    Star Rating 5
    February 25, 2018

    Read full review...

    We loved all the experiences. The train trip was like going back in time, the food was good and the staff were fantastic. The ice walk was amazing, as was the snowshoeing and dog sledding.

    I could go on forever about how wonderful the trip was

    Star Rating 5
    December 19, 2017

    Read full review...

    Everything went extremely well. Every hotel was beautiful and comfortable. Lake Louise was outstanding. The fondue dinner was fantastic. Our favorite thing was the dog sledding. The best! I could go on forever about how wonderful the trip was. We love Fresh Tracks!

    The trip was just what we wanted

    Star Rating 5
    February 12, 2017

    Read full review...

    The trip was just what we wanted. The perfect blend of leisure and activity time, all in a fantastic setting. The dog sledding was a highlight for us. Fresh Tracks were VERY helpful! 24hrs before start of trip we discovered an expired passport. They helped us get it renewed and rebook the entire trip the following week, while minimizing any penalties.

    Thank you for arranging such a fabulous holiday

    Star Rating 5
    April 3, 2016

    Read full review...

    Thank you for arranging such a fabulous holiday in Western Canada. All the connections went smoothly, the tours and staff were both knowledgeable and courteous and the accommodation was superb. I have never seen so much snow in my life, we were very excited. I can now understand why Tofino has a special place in your heart. It was beautiful. We were also fortunate to see so many blossoms and bulbs on the coast. I could go on, but I will just reiterate what a special place Canada is, and not just because it is full of Aussies!

    The ladies absolutely raved about the wonderful dog sled ride

    Star Rating 5
    February 10, 2016

    Read full review...

    The trip was fantastic and that is largely due to huge part you guys played in it. Thank you. The train ride was very fun and the train kept its schedule. We ate well and enjoyed the scenery and our fellow travellers. The cars are well appointed. We're thinking of taking a longer train ride so we can get used to the unique aspects of sleeping on a moving train. The bus rides from Jasper to Lake Louise and from Lake Louise to Calgary offered wonderful views and were quite comfortable. The hotel room in Jasper was super and very nicely appointed. We saw caribou from the balcony. I cannot say enough good about the Fairmont hotel, the personnel, and the geology. All are wonderful. It's a good thing I didn't splurge and get a better room with a lake view because, had I, we never would have left the room. We'd have just set up chairs at the window and spent the time staring at nature's beauty. The hotel's food is first rate and its accommodations are quite comfortable. The sleigh ride was fun and the ladies absolutely raved about the wonderful dog sled ride. Thank you again for all your help.

    We loved everything

    Star Rating 5
    March 22, 2013

    Read full review...

    I want to thank you so much for putting such an amazing trip together for us. Everything we did worked out so nicely and was a wonderful experience. We loved everything – the people from Snowy Owl dog sledding were wonderful and the dogs were terrific, too. I have given your name to many people because we would love to them to experience what we have done. Thanks again.

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This Trip in Pictures

Train travelling through wintery snow covered forest
Train travelling through wintery snow covered forest
Arrive in Vancouver to board the Jasper-bound Canadian Train
Couple on a Maligne Canyon ice walk in the Canadian Rockies
Couple on a Maligne Canyon ice walk in the Canadian Rockies
While in the Canadian Rockies, see amazing ice formations on a tour
Lake Louise and the Fairmont Chateau in winter
Lake Louise and the Fairmont Chateau in winter
Lake Louise is the grand finale of a trip along the Icefields Parkway
A winter dogsled ride
A winter dogsled ride
Sign up for an optional winter adventure
Ice skating outside the Chateau Lake Louise
Ice skating outside the Chateau Lake Louise
Or enjoy the fun offered right from your mountain lodging
Group on a horse drawn sleigh ride on Lake Louise in winter
Group on a horse drawn sleigh ride on Lake Louise in winter
These magic winter moments will be with you forever

Get your FREE trip plan organized and arranged for you

Train and hotel availability is limited – we're now booking into 2019.

Get your personalized itinerary
  • Get a trip that covers everything you want to see.
  • Know which places to go and which areas are best during certain times of the year.
  • Have someone local who knows the area to suggest trains, hotels, dining, sightseeing, etc.
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