Why you should experience a Canadian rail journey at least once

Maximum destinations with minimum time waste? These are the Canadian train trips to get aboard.

Even in this digital age, rail journeys endure as an irreplaceably romantic travel experience. But it’s not just their old-world charm and fuss-free transfers that keep travellers, seasoned and new, climbing aboard.

As the iconic Rocky Mountaineer rail journey through Western Canada exemplifies – voted by International Traveller readers as the Best Rail Journey, two years running – it’s the combination of luxury and practicality. It’s outdoor splendour with indoor comfort. It’s getting from A to B without wasting time, but without missing the moments, that countryside, those glimpses of everyday life, in between.

Similarly, VIA Rail’s multitude of train routes throughout Canada showcase the diversity of scenery that train travel can offer, from British Columbia’s forest-wrapped cities and glaciated mountains, to the rich European delights of Montreal.

Canada’s robust rail system also opens up landscapes that would be otherwise inaccessible to most travellers at certain times of year. VIA Rail’s Snow Train from Vancouver to Jasper, as one example, is an overnight experience that promises prime positioning to see the country’s famous winter wonderland pass by.

Of course, it’s not just the comfort and views from your cabin seat that cement Canada’s rail journeys as an everlasting bucket-list item. It’s the destinations and experiences that await you outside the rail car that keep savvy voyagers coming back. With that, here are seven of the most popular places visited by train travellers in Canada.

Lake Louise, Alberta

World-renowned for its vibrant turquoise colour, soaring mountain backdrop, and palatial hotel, Lake Louise is a must for every traveller visiting Alberta.

Canoe across this mesmerising vista with Qantas Holidays’ 10-night journey between Vancouver and Calgary, via the majestic Rocky Mountaineer, from $5399 per person, twin share.

Banff, Alberta

Best known for its awesome mountains, buzzing nightlife, and charming town centre, Banff is beloved by skiers, snowboarders and summertime visitors alike. See the best view of it from atop the Banff Gondola with Qantas Holidays, who has partnered with the iconic Rocky Mountaineer to create a seven-night itinerary between Calgary to Vancouver from $4125 per person, twin share.

CN Tower, Ontario

A mainstay of Toronto’s city skyline, the CN Tower is an impressive communications and observation tower, looming over 550 metres above Canada’s largest city. Experience the tower’s extreme EdgeWalk, as you travel with Qantas Holidays’ nine-night journey through Eastern Canada with VIA Rail, from $2225 per person, twin share.

Niagara Falls, Ontario

Comprising three gargantuan waterfalls that straddle the border between Ontario, Canada and New York in the United States, Niagara Falls is one of those extra special once-in-a-lifetime destinations. Get up close to this dramatic natural wonder on a cruise, as part of a day-long excursion on Qantas Holidays’ nine-night journey through Eastern Canada with VIA Rail, from $2225 per person, twin share.

Grevin Montreal Museum, Montreal

A mindboggling waxworks museum within the Montreal Eaton Centre in Ville-Marie, the Musée Grévin Montreal (as it’s known to locals) promises to entertain all ages. It’s also just one of many family-friendly highlights on Qantas Holidays’ nine-night journey through Eastern Canada with VIA Rail, from $2225 per person, twin share.

For more information and booking details please go to www.qantasholidays.com.au/canada



One Comment
  • Jane Fisher says:

    My husband and I did the trip from Vancouver to Toronto a few years ago when we both retired and it was a wonderful experience, we met some great people while we relaxed in the Park car at the end of the train. The meals on the train were magnificent and we would recommend this trip to anyone wanting to see Canada by rail.