7 Canadian Train Trips to Book for a Summer Vacation

Despite the dramatic pause on travel that came with the global pandemic, Canadian train trips are back and beautiful as ever. Offering an effortless way to access stunning national parks, cosmopolitan cities, picturesque towns and sprawling landscapes, rail really has become the preferred way to travel for many.

Of course, the shortage of rental cars across Canada adds a little fuel to the fire, but even with self drive and train trip itineraries as an option, many are going back to rail. Whether it's to watch the beautiful scenery roll past your window, enjoy a gourmet meal in the dining car, tuck away for the night in a cozy private sleeper car or a little bit of it all, read on for 7 Canadian train trips to book for a summer vacation.

Psst... looking for winter vacation ideas? Read 4 Winter Train Vacations in Canada for a Magical Adventure.

Why You Should Travel with VIA Rail

The reasons why you should travel with VIA Rail are many. The only train in Canada that covers the width of the country, it offers cozy accommodation, glass-domed viewing cars and gourmet meals created by an actual chef in the onboard kitchen. Just imagine, watching the changing landscapes roll past your window during the day, sitting down to a three-course dinner where your choice of main is rack of lamb, pan-seared scallops or duck (for example) and then climbing into your cozy bunk or double bed and letting the train lull you to sleep. Come morning, hot coffee and breakfast awaits once more in the dining car, and entirely new scenes fill the windows for another day of adventure.

Alpine Canadian Train to the Rockies

Dates: April to October | Price from $1,977 USD per person

The Alpine Canadian Train to the Rockies is one of the best Rocky Mountain train trips from Vancouver or Calgary. Stay in the small alpine towns of Banff, Lake Louise & Jasper, witness breathtaking scenery and travel overnight on VIA Rail in your own cozy sleeper cabin. Enjoy an Ice Explorer ride onto the Athabasca Glacier between Jasper and Lake Louise, and in Banff select your choice of tours from wildlife viewing to a horseback cowboy cookout. This 6-day train trip is the perfect introduction to the beauty of Canada's Rocky Mountains.

Package Includes:

  • Sleeping berth onboard VIA Rail for 1 night
  • 4 nights hotel accommodation
  • Transfer between rail depot and hotel in Jasper
  • Full day tour between Jasper and Lake Louise with picnic lunch
  • Ice Explorer ride on the Athabasca Glacier
  • Glacier Skywalk
  • Scheduled coach transfer between Lake Louise and Banff
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Banff | 1 of 3 Excursions
  • Scheduled coach transfer between Banff and Calgary
  • Meals as per itinerary
  • National park fees

Calgary Stampede and the Canadian Rockies

Dates: July | Price from $3,817 USD per person

Combine Calgary Stampede with a Canadian Rockies train tour for the ultimate summer vacation in Western Canada. Witness 'The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth' with its world-class rodeo, concerts and midway, stay in the Rocky Mountain resort towns of Banff, Lake Louise & Jasper and travel by train in a sleeper berth onboard VIA Rail between Vancouver & Jasper. This best selling 10-day Canadian Rockies train itinerary departs either Calgary or Vancouver -- you choose!

Package Includes:

  • Sleeping berth onboard VIA Rail for 1 night
  • 8 nights hotel accommodation
  • Transfer between rail depot and hotel in Jasper
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Jasper | 1 of 2 Excursions
  • Full day tour between Jasper and Lake Louise with picnic lunch
  • Ice Explorer ride on the Athabasca Glacier
  • Glacier Skywalk
  • Scheduled coach transfer between Lake Louise and Banff
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Banff | 1 of 3 Excursions
  • Scheduled coach transfer between Banff and Calgary
  • 2 days admission to Stampede Park with reserved seating
  • Meals as per itinerary
  • National park fees

Canadian Rockies & the White Pass

Dates: May to October | Price from $4,014 USD per person

This unique train trip takes you aboard two spectacular trains: VIA Rail to the Canadian Rockies and the White Pass Yukon Railroad. Combined to create an amazing 10-day rail vacation from Vancouver, you'll experience Jasper, Lake Louise and Banff plus the northern cities of Whitehorse and Skagway on "The Scenic Railway of the World." Featuring our freedom of choice tours in both Jasper and Banff, you can make this itinerary entirely your own with wildlife viewing, a Maligne Valley tour, the Banff Gondola or a cowboy cookout.

Package Includes:

  • Sleeping berth onboard VIA Rail for 1 night
  • 8 nights hotel accommodation
  • Transfer between rail depot and hotel in Jasper
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Jasper | 1 of 2 Excursions
  • Full day tour between Jasper and Lake Louise with picnic lunch
  • Ice Explorer ride on the Athabasca Glacier
  • Glacier Skywalk
  • Scheduled coach transfer between Lake Louise and Banff
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Banff | 1 of 3 Excursions
  • Scheduled coach transfer between Banff and Calgary
  • Scheduled flight Calgary to Whitehorse
  • Whitehorse city tour
  • Full day Whitehorse to Skagway tour including White Pass & Yukon Railroad
  • Scheduled flight Whitehorse to Vancouver
  • Meals as per itinerary
  • National park fees

Eastern Canada Train Tour of the Capital Cities

Dates: May to October | Price from $2,076 USD per person

If Eastern Canada is calling, this 7-day train trip departs from Toronto and includes time on VIA Rail, in vibrant Montreal and the national's capital city of Ottawa. Before wrapping up the tour in the historic heart of French Canada, Quebec City, you'll have a choice of tours like Montreal sightseeing, wandering a food market, embarking on a fabulous country tour and a rendezvous with history Quebec City tour.

Package Includes:

  • Business Class rail travel Toronto to Ottawa
  • Business Class rail travel Ottawa to Montreal
  • 6 nights hotel accommodation
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Montreal | 1 of 3 Excursions
  • Montreal Half Day Sightseeing Tour
  • Walking Tour of Old Montreal
  • Beyond the Market Food Walking Tour
  • Business Class rail travel Montreal to Quebec City
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Quebec City | 1 of 3 Excursions
  • Rendezvous with History Quebec City Tour
  • A Fabulous Country Tour
  • Foodie Walking Tour of Quebec City
  • Meals as per itinerary

Atlantic Maritimes Explorer | Montreal to Halifax

Dates: June to September | Price from $2,997 USD per person

Go just a little farther east and experience the best of Montreal, Quebec City and Prince Edward Island on our Atlantic Maritimes Explorer tour. Discover Canada as you've never seen it before on a trip with VIA Rail through the Atlantic and Maritime provinces. Witness the dynamic landscapes change from cosmopolitan cities to quirky towns and enjoy your choice of tours in Montreal and Charlottetown. From wandering the local food market on foot to cruising for lobster by boat, each moment is as adventurous as the next.

Package Includes:

  • 6 nights hotel accommodation
  • VIA Rail onboard accommodation for 1 night
  • Quebec City & Montmorency Falls sightseeing tour
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Montreal | 1 of 3 Excursions
  • Private transfer Moncton to Charlottetown + Anne of Green Gables Tour
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Charlottetown | 1 of 2 Excursions
  • Private transfer Charlottetown to Halifax
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Halifax | 1 of 4 Excursions
  • Meals as per itinerary
  • National park fees

Canadian Trails Rail Across Canada | Vancouver to Toronto

Dates: May to October | Price from $4,764 USD per person

Sometimes you really just want to see and do it all, and that's when you should book a train trip across Canada. On this curated train trip, you'll experience GoldLeaf Service on Rocky Mountaineer from Vancouver to Banff, then select your favorite Freedom of Choice tours in the Rockies before continuing on VIA Rail to Toronto. Highlights include an Ice Explorer ride on the Athabasca Glacier and sightseeing from the Banff Gondola, Grizzly bear viewing or a cowboy cookout BBQ dinner by horseback.

Package Includes:

  • VIA Rail onboard accommodation for 3 nights
  • 5 nights hotel accommodation
  • Rocky Mountaineer train Vancouver to Banff
  • Taxi transfers in Jasper and Banff
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Banff | 1 of 3 Excursions
  • Scheduled coach transfer Banff to Lake Louise
  • Full day tour between Jasper and Lake Louise with picnic lunch
  • Ice Explorer ride on the Athabasca Glacier
  • Glacier Skywalk
  • Meals as per itinerary
  • National park fees

Trans Canada Train Trip Adventure | Vancouver to Halifax

Dates: May to September | Price from $7,799 USD per person

To cover even more of the country, take a trans Canada train trip from Vancouver to Halifax with visits to the Rockies, Niagara Falls and Toronto! Traveling through Western Canada with Rocky Mountaineer you'll experience beautiful Jasper, Lake Louise and Banff, then switch to VIA Rail for the journey across Canada to Toronto, Montreal and Halifax. In Banff, Montreal and Halifax you'll have a chance to make the train trip your own, with Freedom of Choice tours like Grizzly bear viewing, city walking tours and sightseeing storied lighthouses.

Package Includes:

  • VIA Rail onboard accommodation for 4 nights
  • 12 nights hotel accommodation
  • Rocky Mountaineer train Vancouver to Banff
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Banff | 1 of 3 Excursions
  • Scheduled coach transfer Banff to Lake Louise
  • Full day tour between Jasper and Lake Louise with picnic lunch
  • Ice Explorer ride on the Athabasca Glacier
  • Glacier Skywalk
  • Niagara Falls and Niagara on the Lake tour with lunch
  • Business class rail travel Toronto to Montreal
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Montreal | 1 of 3 Excursions
  • Quebec City sightseeing tour
  • Freedom of Choice tours in Halifax | 1 of 4 Excursions
  • Meals as per itinerary
  • National park fees

Feeling inspired? Chat with one of our Travel Designers to create a custom trip that's just for you, or visit our Time to Travel page for trip ideas to take this summer. Prefer to simply stay in touch? Subscribe to our newsletter for up-to-date deals, trip ideas and more!

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