Exclusive: Step Into The Shoes Of Someone Travelling The Rocky Mountaineer
October 12, 2016
If you haven’t heard of the Rocky Mountaineer – you need to! This train is world famous for whisking passengers off in style and comfort through Canada’s rugged mountains and scenery. It promises a once in a lifetime trip getting you to the heart of nature, to see the real Canada and so much more.
But what exactly has a train got to do with cruising? Why have so many cruisers taken a trip on this famous expedition? And what is it really like to travel with Rocky Mountaineer? Our Hayley set off on a trip with Rocky Mountaineer recently and we caught up with her to answer all of these questions! Read on to find out what she thought…
So what was your highlight of the trip?
“Every day was a highlight for me! From stepping on board the Rocky Mountaineer train, enjoying the luxury of gold leaf service, exploring the ice fields, taking helicopter rides, riding the Banff Gondola & of course the breath taking scenery of the Rockies. There’s so much to enjoy in this trip.”
Can you explain to us what the train was like?
“What an experience! Upon arrival at the Rocky Mountaineer station, you are greeted by friendly staff members checking you in and handing you your boarding card. There is a pianist playing, beverages being offered around and a station to help yourself to tea & coffee. Before we boarded we were greeted by the train manager and the bagpipes were played as we boarded, we then found our seats and were waved off by all the staff from the station. I was lucky enough to be in Gold Leaf so we had a glass dome over head & great views and we could get up and stretch our legs. There is a viewing platform and a separate dining area downstairs to enjoy breakfast and lunch. There were two meal sittings on the train and if you were the second sitting, they fed you even more!”
So what was the difference between Gold Leaf and Silver Leaf service?
“These are the two levels of service you can choose to enjoy on Rocky Mountaineer. Silver Leaf has great views and you have plenty of room at your feet, you are served your meals at your seat and moderate accommodation is included e.g you may not have a good view at your hotel.
In Gold Leaf you dine at a table in the dining carriage, there is more options to choose from, you can stretch your legs and you have panoramic views, extra room & comfort at your seat. I would 100% recommend upgrading to Gold Leaf – it is definitely worth it!”
Was there entertainment on-board the train?
“Drinks flowed throughout the journeys, stories were told and games were played. Staff members made the experience, they were very knowledgeable. The train slowed down when approaching a highlight on route such as animals or stunning scenery.
Rocky Mountaineer are very organised, when you reach your destination, your coach pulls up right outside the train carriage so guests do not need to walk very far at all. The coach drivers are also very knowledgeable and talk you through areas that your passing on route to your hotels.”
What wildlife did you see?
“I was able to see bald eagles, elks, squirrels and chipmunks. Unfortunately, we were out of season for the bears. The best time to see the grizzlies is between May and June and also in August. It was mating season for the elks and we were told you shouldn’t go near the males as they are prone to charging!”
What was the food like?
“The food was amazing; you definitely won’t go hungry on a Rocky Mountaineer trip! Once again definitely worth upgrading to gold leaf for the full culinary service. We ate meals such as beef short ribs and they also did amazing breakfast.”
What were your favourite destinations?
“I loved Banff, the town is quaint, the people are friendly and the back drop of the mountains make it special. I actually enquired about moving here but apparently I have to marry a Canadian!”
Was the accommodation nice?
“We stayed in some of the best hotels which were in great locations. The rooms were comfortable and we enjoyed great views & breakfast and hospitality! The amenities in the room were also just what we needed for example we had an iron was in every room… which is needed when living out of a suitcase for a week!”
Do you feel like you got to the heart of Canada?
“Oh yes! I thoroughly enjoyed Canada, what a trip. I actually wasn’t ready to leave; I would go again tomorrow. I would love to see other parts of Canada and hope to see a grizzly on the next visit.”
Why does the Rocky Mountaineer make a perfect add on for your cruise?
“Canadian Rockies touring on board the Rocky Mountaineer is the perfect combination to marry up with an Alaska cruise as it offers the best scenery around. It is so relaxing yet full of activities to make it an unforgettable adventure.”
Did anything surprise you about this trip?
“Canada as a whole surprised me, I couldn’t get over the views, hospitality and how much there is to do. I could have stayed longer and done the whole trip again…”
What type of person do you think this trip is most suited to?
“There is so much to do on this trip, a whole range of activities, whilst I was on board I found a mix of age ranges including older children, couples, retirees and friends.”
What tips would you have for anyone going on this trip?
“Pack everything! The weather can be changeable so make sure you have a few jumpers and also lighter layers. You should also prepare to indulge on the culinary delights (and possibly put on a pound or two in the process!)”
What other place in the world would you compare Canada to?
“I can’t compare Canada to any other place I have ever visited, it is completely unique.”
So there you have it! Fancy a trip on Rocky Mountaineer yourself? Take a look at some of our packages there here… You can also find out what some of our specialist cruise consultants thought of the trip last year here!
If you want to take a look at more of Hayley’s journey, click here for the exclusives!
Would you fancy an adventure on the Rocky Mountaineer? Have you ever been before? Is Canada on your bucket list? Let us know in the comments below!
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