My Rocky Mountaineer adventure starts now……………….

Has the Canadian Rockies ever been a destination on your list of things to do? Well it has mine for many years and this coming Monday I fly to Vancouver to begin Rocky Mountaineer’s Western Explorer. A combination of both coach and Rocky Mountaineer Train that will take me from Vancouver through to Calgary. Of course I will be doing video posts throughout my journey and you can view these via my facebook page

Freight train moving along river

So what is the Western Explorer and what will my itinerary be? I have included my full day to day itinerary which includes details re luggage storage, smoking policies and timings from A-B. Many questions I am asked when booking Rocky Mountaineer.


I live up north  so I will be flying Manchester to Heathrow on Sunday and since I am flying to Vancouver from Terminal 2 , I have been recommended The Renaissance Hotel on Bath Road which I believe is 0.5 miles away from Terminal 2. I will be honest I have only flown from Heathrow once at that was in 1992 so travelling from Heathrow will be a new experience!

Monday sees my flying to Vancouver with Air Canada , never flown with them before but I have heard fantastic reviews .

On arrival into Vancouver late afternoon it is a transfer to the Vancouver Lookout, situated high above Vancouver, the Lookout is the perfect first stop for visitors and provides a fascinating bird’s eye view of the city of Vancouver. Glass elevators whisk visitors 130 meters (430 feet) skyward from street level to the Observation Deck in a mere forty seconds. Here you will enjoy a riveting and spectacular 360 degree view of Metro Vancouver’s cosmopolitan downtown and the suburbs beyond, the vast Pacific Ocean, bustling Coal Harbour, and the majestic North!

Followed by a hosted cocktail party  at the Sheraton Wall Centre is a an early night at the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver before a 6.40 departure the following day.

Tuesday 25th April

Pick-up: 06:40 Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver
Drop-off: 07:15 Rocky Mountaineer Vancouver Station
Its time to board the Rocky Mountaineer train to Kamloops. I will be luck enough to experience Silver and Gold Leaf services over the days I will be on board Rocky Mountaineer.
Check-in: 06:40 to 07:15
Boarding: 07:30
Travel onboard Rocky Mountaineer from the coastal city of Vancouver to Kamloops, located in the heart of British Columbia’s interior. Upon arrival at the Kamloops Station, you will be transferred by motorcoach to your overnight accommodation. The pick-up time for tomorrow morning’s motorcoach transfer to the train station will be posted in the lobby of your hotel.
Note: Onboard purchases may be paid with VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Diners Club, Discover Card, pre-paid VISA or pre-paid MasterCard.
Information for smokers:
Smoking is not permitted anywhere onboard Rocky Mountaineer. This includes the vestibules between coaches and restrooms. We appreciate your cooperation.
Our expected arrival time in Kamloops will be between 17:30 and 19:00.

I have highlighted below the difference between Silver Leaf and Gold Leaf service regarding the handling of luggage and the meals on board too.

As a SilverLeaf Service guest your checked luggage will travel separately from the train and will be waiting for you at the Thompson Hotel and Conference Centre. Please note there is no overhead seat storage, and your carry-on bag must fit at your feet.
Important: All medications, valuables, personal items and travel documents must be carried with you in your hand luggage.
Meals onboard the train:
SilverLeaf Service guests will be served a hot breakfast and lunch at your seat. Guests will also receive complimentary snacks, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages throughout the rail journey.

As a GoldLeaf Service guest, you will not have access to your luggage until your arrival in Jasper. Please note there is no overhead or under seat storage, and your carry-on bag must fit at your feet.
Important: All medications, valuables, personal items and travel documents must be carried with you in your hand luggage.
Meals onboard the train:
GoldLeaf Service guests will be served a hot gourmet breakfast and lunch in the lower-level dining room. Guests will also receive complimentary snacks, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages throughout the rail journey.


The pick-up time for this morning’s motorcoach transfer to the train station is posted in the lobby of your hotel.
Boarding: 07:45
After an overnight stay at your Kamloops hotel, transfer by motorcoach to the train station. Travel onboard Rocky Mountaineer over the Yellowhead Pass into spectacular Jasper National Park. Today’s journey ends in the town of Jasper at the Jasper Heritage Railway Station, 607 Connaught Drive. Our expected arrival time in Jasper will be between 18:00 and 19:30. Pick-up: 18:00 Jasper Station
Drop-off: 19:00 Best Western Jasper Inn and Suites
Upon arrival at the Jasper Train Station, transfer by motorcoach to your Jasper accommodation.

My evening will consist of  the Famosa Italian Pizza Restaurant, 607 Patricia Street, Jasper for an evening with friends.


Time: 07:00 – 08:30
Breakfast Meal Plan:
This morning enjoy breakfast at your leisure before departing Jasper.

Pick-up: 09.00 Best Western Jasper
Drop-off: 17:00 Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise

Depart by private motorcoach for a full day sightseeing tour along the Icefields Parkway, one of the world’s most scenic highways. The highlight today is a visit to the Columbia Icefield and an Ice Explorer ride on the Athabasca Glacier.
The Ice Explorer at the Columbia Icefield Centre is a 5 kilometre (3 mile) round-trip journey on the icy slopes of Athabasca Glacier.
Your driver/guide will explain how glaciers are formed and point out interesting geological features as you travel in safety and comfort. At the midpoint, you will have the option of stepping out onto the glacial ice.
Note: Appropriate footwear, sunglasses and sunscreen are recommended. Today you will enjoy a buffet lunch.

After Lunch it is onwards to the Fairmont Lake Louise, now this hotel has been on my places to see for as long as I can remember.  In the evening we are treated to a 3 course dinner in the stunning restaurant. I have chosen the Beef for main course due to recommendation. The photos will be amazing.

Friday, April 28

Pick-up: 09:30 – Coach #1
Drop-off: 13:30 – Caribou Lodge and Spa

Enjoy a sightseeing tour through Yoho National Park. Transfer to Banff.

TREASURE HUNT IN BANFF – NOT SOMETHING YOU DO EVERYDAY. Will be fabulous! This is something the Agent Trip I am on are doing so not for customers I am afraid.  I am quite competitive so lets see if we win.  Grab some lunch on your own and explore this exciting mountain town and tourist hub. We have a fun (optional) scavenger hunt to participate in, so you can get out-and-about at some of Banff’s hottest attractions. To play, you’ll need at least one person in your group with a smart phone and a Twitter or Instagram account. You can play in groups of your choosing. This is mostly about the esteem and the experience, but we will have some prizes to hand out at our wrap up event tomorrow in Calgary! More information on the scavenger hunt will be delivered on site. Enjoy the afternoon and evening to yourself, or with friends!

18.30pm We will meet at the Banff Brewing Company, 110 Banff Ave for a meal. You are then free to enjoy the wonderful town of Banff at your leisure!

Saturday, April 29

Pick-up: 09:15 –
Drop-off: 18:15 Hotel Le Germain in Calgary

Enjoy a full-day sightseeing tour of Banff and Calgary. You will begin with a tour of Banff including the Hoodoos rock formation, Surprise Corner and Tunnel Mountain Drive.
Departing Banff, you will have a scenic two hour transfer to the city of Calgary where you will have a tour of Calgary’s western roots and culture. Highlights include the Calgary Stampede area – known as the largest outdoor show on earth, Calgary’s Chinatown and Calgary’s popular shopping area – Eau Claire Market.

The Banff Gondola is a spectacular eight-minute gondola ride to the top of Sulphur Mountain for 360-degree views of the Banff townsite and its surrounding mountains. This will be followed by a Summit Helicopter Flightseeing Tour!

Complimentary admission to the Calgary Tower has been included in your vacation package. It can be used any day during your stay in Calgary. This is an independent experience for you to enjoy at your own leisure and is not a guided tour. When you are ready to enjoy the Calgary Tower, please make your own way to 101 – 9th Street SW. Transportation to/from the Calgary Tower is not included.
The Calgary Tower has become the City of Calgary’s most famous and identifiable physical landmark. One of the first towers of its kind, the Calgary Tower offers the best view in Calgary. Visitors to the Observation Deck are able to virtually step out into space on the glass floor experience. Imagine standing 525 feet above the ground in the heart of Calgary and being able to look straight down and directly out in front of you into the heart of the city.

Farewell Dinner at Hotel Le Germain


Check out of your room and store your bags with the concierge
Enjoy Free time to explore Calgary at your leisure.

Sad day this will be when I fly back to London 🙁

This itinerary like I said is what you can expect from the Western Explorer and can be done in either direction. I am doing Vancouver to Calgary. I wanted to share my experience from you so if you are thinking of doing the same you can see day by day what is included. Meals are not included on this trip apart from on Rocky Mountaineer train of course, although you can pay a supplement for Bed and Breakfast at the Hotels.

So please log on to my facebook page from Monday onwards to see my day to day blog. If you are not on Facebook then I will be doing a full blog in the coming weeks so watch this space.





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