“ Overall the trip was great! I was really impressed with the transfers that were organised. They were fantastic and at times really saved the trip. One part of the trip that we all found quite disappointing was the train trip. On our first part, from Vancouver to Jasper, the train arrived 5 hours late. I understand that these things happen but the Via Rail staff were extremely unhelpful and by the time we finally arrived in Jasper we were all feeling very disheartened and figured that being 5 hours late we would not be making it to Lake Louise that night. Luckily our driver from Sundog Tours was there waiting for us – hence why the transfers at times saved our trip. The rest of the train trip wasn't as bad but overall the staff on the train were unhelpful and I will not be recommending that any of my friends travel using Via Rail. On a lighter note, I was impressed with all the hotels, except for the Rundlestone Lodge in Banff where the people working at the desk were again rude and snappy. All the other hotels were wonderful and the people working there made our trips really pleasant! One of the highlights of the trip was definitely staying at Lake Louise. It was like a magical winter wonderland and our snow shoeing adventure was one of the most fun things I have ever done! Our guide was amazing and made sure we were warm, safe and most of all had fun! Overall I really appreciated, as did my parents, that all the little details such as the transfers and activities were organised for us by you all at Fresh Tracks Canada. Having never been to Canada before it was good having people who know the country and where to go and what to do helping us organise our trip. Although I won't be recommending travel with Via Rail to friends and family, I will definitely be recommending Fresh Tracks Canada! ”
Trans Canada by Rail in Winter
starting fromUS $3,799per person
5 of 5 stars (1 review)
- Choose your own activities and experiences to enjoy between scenic train tours
- Tailor your stay to perfectly suit your timeline and budget
What we love about this trip
Seeing the majestic Canadian Rockies in winter
Sleeping on the VIA Rail ‘Canadian Train’ in a private cabin
Exploring Vancouver, Jasper and Banff
Unique resort hotel experiences
Local winter tours and excursions
Optional dog sledding, skiing, skating and more
Start your Canada vacation by climbing aboard the train in Vancouver and being lulled to sleep, while the snow falls silently outside. Awake in a Rockies winter wonderland and spend a few days exploring and playing outside, each night cozying up in a warm hotel. Continue your memorable vacation by train again through Canada, and end your trip in Toronto.
Arrive Vancouver → 1 night Vancouver → 1 night VIA Rail → 2 nights Jasper → 2 nights Banff → 3 nights VIA Rail → Depart Toronto
Sample ItineraryPlease note - all of our Canada vacation packages can be customized to suit your time frame, budget, group size, and interests.
Day 1 – Arrive in Vancouver
The cool, crisp air in Vancouver invigorates you as you start your Canada vacation. Vancouver’s relatively mild weather is a great introduction to a Canadian winter, but look to the north and you see the winter scene you have been dreaming of - Vancouver’s coastal mountains stand before you, covered in pure white snow. Overnight Vancouver.
Day 2 – Into the Canadian Rockies – Vancouver to Jasper on VIA Rail’s Canadian
Spend the day sightseeing in Vancouver before boarding the train.
You have 2 options to choose from today:
• Option 1: Vancouver Sightseeing Tour
This is the best way to visit the main attractions and neighbourhoods of Vancouver. You will tour along the scenic harbour and through the historic areas of downtown Vancouver. There will be time to visit the totem poles at Stanley Park, browse art galleries and shops at Granville Island, visit the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park, and learn about the Pacific Salmon at the Capilano Salmon Hatchery.
• Option 2: Eagle Viewing Float Tour
Just an hour north of Vancouver is one of the world’s largest population of bald eagles. From December to mid-February, these magnificent birds return to the area to feed on spawning salmon. This tour lets you view the eagles from the best place – on the river. In addition, you will travel along the scenic Sea-to-Sky Highway and enjoy views of ocean vistas, soaring mountains, and rainforest.
This evening, a cozy and comfortable cabin awaits you on the Canadian train. A panoramic dome car - where you can relax, unwind, and see the sights all around you - is only a short walk from your cabin. Chatting over a drink with fellow travelers makes the evening end too quickly, and you climb into your warm bed prepared by your attendant. Be lulled to sleep by the motion of the train as you travel further toward the Canadian Rockies. Overnight onboard the train.
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. Enjoy the views over breakfast and lunch onboard. The snow is glistening as you arrive in the mountain town of Jasper. Step off the train this afternoon and take a deep breath of the fresh mountain air, you have arrived! Enjoy the evening at leisure exploring the town. Overnight in Jasper.
Day 4 – Travel the Icefields Parkway – Jasper to Banff
Enjoy a scenic transfer along the spine of the Rockies, known as the Icefields Parkway - recognized as one of Canada’s most beautiful routes. Each turn reveals frozen waterfalls and impossibly vast mountain valleys. Have your camera ready! End this day of your Canadian adventure in Banff.
Day 5 – Explore the Canadian Rockies
You have 2 options to choose from today:
• Option 1: Lake Louise Sightseeing Plus Banff Gondola Ride
Spot wildlife and discover beautiful winter scenery as you make your way to Lake Louise, along the Bow Valley Parkway. With four hours of free time at Lake Louise, you can try snowshoeing, rent skates, take a horse-drawn sleigh ride and visit the Chateau Lake Louise. Upon returning to Banff, take the Banff Gondola to the top of Sulphur Mountain for incredible views from the observation deck and restaurant.
• Option 2: Dog Sled Experience
Teams of friendly huskies await to whisk you through the wilderness of Spray Lakes Park. You will have the option to harness the dogs and drive the team, or simply enjoy the experience as a passenger. Either way, this is sure to be one of your most memorable Canadian experiences.
Day 6 – Travel from Banff to Jasper
Enjoy the morning at your leisure around Banff. This afternoon you will be picked up and transferred back to Jasper along the Icefields Parkway for one last night in the Canadian Rockies.
Day 7 – Tour Jasper & travel onboard the Canadian train to Toronto
Spend the morning exploring Jasper National Park.
You have 2 options to choose from today:
• Option 1: Winter Discovery Tour
Join a knowledgeable guide and small group to seek out and learn about ecology and rich diversity of Jasper National Park! You will travel through the Athabasca Valley to some of the park’s most beautiful scenery - have your camera ready to capture some amazing photos! There is minimal walking on this tour, so sit back and enjoy the winter scenery from the comfort of the bus.
• Option 2: Maligne Canyon Ice Walk
Explore frozen waterfalls, ice caves and incredible ice formations as you walk along the bottom of Maligne Canyon with a guide. This is one of Jasper’s most unique winter experiences.
Days 8 & 9 – Onboard the Canadian Train
The scenery changes as you travel across the undulating plain of the Prairie Provinces and into Ontario. Settle into your seat and enjoy watching the sights from your picture window. The snow covered trees and barns of the prairies are illuminated in the sunlight.
Day 10 – Trans Canada winter journey ends
This morning you arrive into Toronto. Much too soon your journey comes to an end, as you leave the snowy vistas and friendly faces of Canada behind. Ask us about details of some of our eastern Canada tours, to continue your journey through Ontario and Quebec.
Below you'll find examples of this trip's accommodation choices. Please call us for the full list or advice on how to customize your experience.
Georgian Court Hotel
An example of our Comfort accommodations
The Georgian Court Hotel features 180 guestrooms in a 12-story brick building, in the heart of downtown Vancouver. Enjoy a comfortable sleep in your elegant room, surf the internet with the complimentary wireless, or enjoy a meal on the seasonal patio.
An example of our Superior and Deluxe accommodations
The 4.5 star Rimrock Resort is built into the side of a mountain, when you enter the main lobby, you are actually on the 7th floor, and the views from the pamorama of windows over the Bow Valley are simply stunning. The hotel has an upscale yet understated feel, and the service is impeccable.
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 Banff Springs
An example of our Deluxe accommodations
Styled after a Scottish Baronial Castle, The Fairmont Banff Springs is located in the heart of Banff National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Enjoy one of the many activities that the hotel has to offer from tennis, horseback riding, a round of golf, skiing, relaxing at the the Willow Stream Spa (charge), or enjoying a great meal at one of 12 restaurants, lounges or pubs.
Prices & Dates2017-2018 Trip Start Dates
(this trip can also start in Toronto, please call or email for start dates)
December 14, 21*, 28*
January 4, 11, 18, 25
February 1, 8, 15*, 22
March 1, 8, 15, 22
* Itinerary and price variations may occur for travel over Christmas, New Years and holidays. Give us a call for additional information
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 Hotelsfrom US $3,799to US $4,103per 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 Hotelsfrom US $3,999to US $4,319per 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 FavoriteDeluxe Level Hotelsfrom US $4,999to US $5,399per 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.
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).
What are the best ways to travel around Canada on my vacation
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.
Is it safe to drive in the mountains?
New visitors will drive with ease because of the wide and well maintained roadways. We'll ensure your trip includes the most spectacular and safest routes throughout your 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.
Are your tours escorted?
No, but you'll feel like it is with all your connections and experiences prearranged. Our clients love the freedom and flexibility it gives them. Some of our wildlife experiences are small group tours led by specialist guides.
Customer Reviews (1)
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- Choose your activities and experiences to enjoy between scenic train tours.
- Tailor your stay to perfectly suit your timeline and budget.