Holidays by Train

A rail holiday to the USA and Canada is one of the best ways to travel and allows you to sit back, relax and view the stunning scenery through the windows of a comfortable rail car, without having to worry about driving directions and traffic jams.  Train travel gives you plenty of room to move around and meet fellow travellers, while on-board service attendants are there to assist you throughout your trip to make your journey more enjoyable.

Our tailor-made itineraries enable you to plan your stops along the way and we can recommend the very best places to disembark and stretch your legs, even stop for a night or two in some fantastic destinations.

Some of our most popular train journeys are the California Zephyr from Chicago to San Francisco, the Coast Starlight between Seattle and Los Angeles, the City of New Orleans from Chicago, through Memphis to New Orleans, the Adirondack between Montreal and New York, the Rocky Mountaineer, through the Canadian Rockies and Via Rail journeys across Canada.

Most trains have a Café car, which offers a variety of food and beverages and long-distance trains have a Dining car – a family style restaurant serving freshly prepared foods. All meals are included for travellers who have booked sleeping accommodation. There are a variety of sleeping options to choose from, including Roomettes, which have chairs that convert to bunk style beds at night with shared bathroom facilities and Bedrooms which feature private bathroom facilities and a nightly turndown service. Larger family rooms can accommodate up to six passengers.

Suggested Itineraries

Empire Builder with Glacier National Park Chicago to Seattle - As seen on Billy Connolly's Tracks Across America on ITV 

Price includes flights, accommodation in Chicago, Glacier National Park and Seattle, Empire Builder journey in a Roomette including meals on board, transfers within Glacier National Park, Swiftcurrent Boat Tour, Crown of the Continent Bus Tour, and all local taxes. Prices subject to availability at time of booking.

Amtrak’s Empire Builder runs daily between Chicago and the Pacific Northwest along major portions of the Lewis and Clark trail. The mighty Empire Builder takes you on an exciting adventure through majestic wilderness, following the footsteps of early pioneers. From Chicago, you'll have magnificent views of the Mississippi and see the glowing night skyline of Minneapolis and St. Paul. Awake the next morning as you cross the North Dakota plains and travel over the spectacular Gassman Coulee Trestle. Skirting the Missouri, you'll cross into the Big Sky country in Montana, stopping at the stunning Glacier National Park. Continue on into Washington State, to Spokane and on to Seattle. 

Day 1    Chicago
Fly from the UK to Chicago and stay for two nights. Chicago has something for everybody. Spend your time enjoying the world-class shopping on the ‘Magnificent Mile’, striking architecture, beautiful beaches, fantastic music and nightlife and wonderful museums.

Day 3     Amtrak’s Empire Builder 
Departing at 14.15, the Empire Builder follows the route of the explorers as you head towards the Pacific Northwest. Read, listen to music or chat with your fellow travellers as you gaze out at the magnificent scenery. Overnight on board the train.

Day 4     East Glacier Park, Montana
Arrive at Glacier National Park at 18.45. Your hotel for the night is the Glacier Park Lodge.
Modelled after a Swiss Chalet, this historic lodge offers enticing amenities including a heated outdoor swimming pool and nine-hole golf course. Overnight Glacier Park Lodge.

Day 5    Glacier National Park
Transfer to the Many Glacier Hotel, situated on the shores of Swiftcurrent Lake in the heart of Glacier National Park. This national landmark, built by the Great Northern Railroad in 1915 to create the “American Alps,” boasts a true Swiss atmosphere. Enjoy a boat ride on Swiftcurrent Lake showcasing the alpine beauty and grandeur of the park. Overnight Many Glacier Hotel 

Day 6    Glacier National Park
Spend another day exploring Glacier National Park on a “Crown of the Continent Tour.” The historic red buses of Glacier National Park, called Jammers, will take you around the Park just as they did in the 1930’s. Journey across one of the most stunning roads in North America, the Going-to-the-Sun Road, unsurpassed in alpine splendour. Overnight Many Glacier Hotel.

Day 7    Glacier National Park 
Today, experience pristine forests, alpine meadows, rugged mountains, and spectacular lakes and discover why Glacier National Park is considered the birthplace of mountaineering in North America. With over 700 miles of trails, Glacier is a hiker’s paradise for adventurous visitors seeking wilderness and solitude. Deer are among the most commonly spotted wildlife but elk, moose, mountain goats, bighorn sheep, wolves, and grizzly and black bears roam its wild vastness and are often seen by visitors. Spend another night at Glacier Park Lodge. 

Day 8    Amtrak’s Empire Builder
You have a full day to enjoy Glacier National Park. Board the Empire Builder at 18.45 for your overnight journey to Seattle. Overnight train.

Day 9    Seattle
When you see Mount Rainier and the Space Needle looming in the distance, you’ll know you’ve arrived in Seattle. Your arrival time is around 10.25.
Spend two nights in this exciting city. Stroll along the historic waterfront and then head to Pike Place Market for fresh, local produce and handmade crafts. Visit the Seattle Center with the Space Needle here is also the Aquarium, the Pacific Science Center, Science Fiction Museum and the Experience Music Project. For a unique sightseeing option, try a Duck Tour of the city. In the evening, sample exquisite Northwest cuisine in one of the many great restaurants in the city.

Day 11    Seattle
Spend your day at leisure before your overnight flight back to the UK. 

America As You Like It can also tailor make an itinerary to suit your individual requirements and you can stay as long or as short a time in any of the stops on the Empire Builder, or include other overnights elsewhere. Please let us know what you would like to do and we would be happy to put some suggestions together for you. To include the Glacier National Park stays you need to depart Chicago between 18 June and 12 September. 

If you would prefer a guided rail-tour rather than an independent journey, please let us know and we can let you have some options. 

10 Nights
Prices from:
£2535 per person

Coast Starlight - Seattle to Los Angeles
Includes flights, train journey, accommodation and some meals. 

Widely regarded as one of the most spectacular of all train routes, the Coast Starlight links the greatest cities on the West Coast. En route daily between Seattle and Los Angeles, the Coast Starlight passes through Portland, Sacramento, the San Francisco Bay Area and Santa Barbara. The scenery along the Coast Starlight route is unsurpassed. The dramatic snow-covered peaks of the Cascade Range and Mount Shasta, lush forests, fertile valleys and long stretches of Pacific Ocean shoreline provide a stunning backdrop for your journey.

Day 1 Fly from the UK to Seattle
Stay three nights in Seattle and explore the downtown area. Visit Pikes Place Market and Seattle Center with the Space Needle. There is also the Aquarium, the Pacific Science Center, Science Fiction Museum and the Experience Music Project, not to mention great shopping and dining. Take a trip out to the Boeing Factory where you can take a guided tour, or enjoy a harbour cruise or a boat trip across Puget Sound.

Day 4 Take Amtrak’s Coast Starlight train from Seattle to Los Angeles  09.45 – 21.00 (+1).
We recommend you stay in a Superliner Roomette, which includes all meals on board. The roomettes have two chairs that convert into bunk style beds at night. There are shared bathroom facilities. The Amtrak train staff are extremely knowledgeable about all the areas you pass through and can answer any questions you have and give you a great insight into your journey.

If you would like to discover more of the cities and coastal areas the Coast Starlight travels through, it is possible to break your journey and we can arrange as many or as few nights in any of the places along the route for you.

Day 5 Arrive in Los Angeles 21.00
Stay three nights in Los Angeles. Discover the different neighbourhoods associated with the LA lifestyle, including hip and trendy West Hollywood (or WeHo if you’re in the know!), glamorous Beverly Hills and the beach cities of Santa Monica, Venice and Marina del Ray.

Day 8 Depart from Los Angeles or extend your holiday in Southern California by travelling down to San Diego, either by train or car.

7 Nights
Contact Us for Further Details

East Coast Cities by Rail
Price includes flights, Amtrak train travel and accommodation based on 2 people sharing.

The cities of Philadelphia, Washington, DC and New York offer unique experiences in their own right, but together allow you to enjoy American city life at its best. Travelling on Amtrak offers you a glimpse of the countryside as well. 

Day 1 - Washington, DC
As the nation's capital, Washington, DC is famous for the White House, Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument. Washington's most famous museums belong to the Smithsonian Institute and whatever your interest you can find it here. Enjoy the city's different neighbourhoods, dining, shopping and nightlife. Stay for two nights. 

Day 3 - Washington, DC to Philadelphia
Take the two hour Amtrak journey to Philadelphia, the First City of America. As well as the plentiful art museums and galleries, visitors should not miss a visit to the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. Three nights in Philadelphia will give you the chance to explore at leisure and take in the vibrant atmosphere. 

Day 6 - Philadelphia to New York City
Your East Coast Cities tour ends in New York, a short hour and a half train journey from Philadelphia. New York itself needs little introduction. The city is renowned for its Broadway theatre, famous landmarks, Fifth Avenue shopping and many fabulous musems. Spend your final two nights in New York, exploring the city that never sleeps.

Day 8 - Depart from New York City

7 Nights
Prices from:
£965 per person

California Zephyr
Price includes flights, accommodation, train journey and some meals. 

From towering skyscrapers to the Golden Gate Bridge – experienced travellers say the California Zephyr is one of the most beautiful train trips in all of North America. As you climb through the heart of the Rockies, and further west through the snow-capped Sierra Nevadas, you may find it hard to disagree.

The Zephyr runs daily between Chicago and San Francisco, coursing through the plains of Nebraska to Denver, across the Rockies to Salt Lake City, and then through Reno and Sacramento into Emeryville/San Francisco. The scenic highlights include the Rocky Mountains, Sierra Nevada Mountains, Moffat Tunnel, Colorado's Gore, Byers and Glenwood Canyons, Winter Park, Truckee River, Donner Lake, San Pablo Bay and the Carquinez Strait.

Day 1 Chicago
Fly from the UK to Chicago with British Airways, where you will stay for 2 nights

Day 2  Chicago has something for everybody.
Spend your time enjoying the world-class shopping on the ‘Magnificent Mile’, striking architecture, beautiful beaches, fantastic music and nightlife and wonderful museums.

Day 3 Chicago to Omaha, NE (approx. 9 hours)
Board the California Zephyr this afternoon and settle in to your Superliner Roomette, including all meals on board. The roomettes have two chairs that convert into bunk style beds at night and there are shared bathroom facilities. Other classes of service are available. Your journey today will take you across Illinois and Iowa and into Nebraska. Crossing the mighty Mississippi and Missouri Rivers and the Mid-west plains, the Zephyr will bring you into Omaha. Spend one night in Omaha.

Day 4 Omaha to Denver, CO (approx. 8 hours overnight)
You will have the whole day in Omaha today, before you late evening departure to Denver. Omaha played a central role in the history of transportation across America and is known as the ‘Gate City of the West’. It has a historic downtown area, Old Market and is the hometown to such actors as Fred Astaire, Marlon Brando, Nick Nolte and Henry Fonda. There is a wealth of state history at the Durham Museum, located in the magnificently restored Union Station. Within a couple of hours of Omaha, you can visit Winnebago Indian Reservation and see the bison herd, buy native American art and jewellery and learn more about life on a reservation.

Day 5 Denver, CO
Arrive in Denver early this morning where you will stay for two nights. Known as the ‘Mile High City’ at an elevation of 5280 feet at the 13th step of the State Capitol Building, Denver is a cosmopolitan city with a Western flavour. With a back-drop of the Rocky Mountains the city also offers great nightlife and dining, Western stores, boutiques and shopping malls as well as interesting museums and galleries. What’s more it also boasts more than 300 days of sunshine a year

Day 6 Denver, CO
Enjoy the outdoors and take a trip to the spectacular Red Rocks Amphitheatre, or rent a bike and discover some of the 850 miles of bike paths and the numerous city parks. Take a tour including a stop at the Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave on top of Lookout Mountain and get a fantastic view of the city.

Day 7 Denver to Salt Lake City, UT (approx. 15 hours)
Board the train this morning and continue on the California Zephyr through the Rocky Mountains. You will pass through Moffat Tunnel, 6.2 mile long and cutting the distance between Denver and the Pacific Coast by 176 miles when it opened in 1928. Today’s scenery is stunning and takes you through the mountains and canyons of Colorado, including Glenwood and Gore Canyon, Glenwood Springs and Grand Junction, and into Utah with its red sandstone cliffs. You will arrive in Salt Lake City late this evening and stay for one night.

Day 8 Salt Lake City to Sacramento, CA (approx. 15 hours)
Spend your day in Salt Lake City, before your overnight train to Sacramento. The city is surrounded by mountains and the views are spectacular. Salt Lake City is the world headquarters of the Mormon Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and if you have timed your journey to be here on a Sunday you can attend the Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra’s live broadcast at 9.30am. The choir also rehearse on a Thursday evening. The Historic Temple Square area is the city’s top attraction with guided tours of the historic sites, interactive exhibits, art displays and parks and gardens. For any one interested in genealogy, a visit to the Family Search Center is a must.

Day 9  Sacramento, CA
Arriving in the capital of California in the early afternoon, why not make your first stop the California State Railroad Museum with its historic exhibits showcasing how the Transcontinental Railroad has shaped the lives, economy and culture of Americans. Stay one night in Sacramento and sample some of the city’s great restaurants and local brew-pubs.

Day 10 Sacramento to San Francisco, CA (approx. 2 ½ hours)
Spend the morning in Old Sacramento, with its boardwalk and Gold Rush-era buildings on the banks of the Sacramento River. There are plenty of shops, galleries and restaurants, as well as the Sacramento History Museum which gives a great insight into the local native inhabitants, the early settlers, followed by the Gold Rush and then later the area’s agricultural boom. Take the early afternoon train to Emeryville and then the Amtrak Thruway Bus service into San Francisco where you will spend your last two nights.

Day 11 San Francisco, CA
San Francisco is a compact city and easy to get around on foot, by cable car or street car line. Enjoy Fisherman’s Wharf, Alcatraz, Chinatown, the Golden Gate Bridge and Union Square. Why not take a boat across the bay to Sausalito and get a great view of the city from one of the many waterfront cafes and bars. Other sightseeing alternatives are Segway tours or bicycle tours.

Day 12  
Spend the morning doing some last minute shopping at the Westfield Mall or the shops around Union Square, before heading for the airport for your flight back to the UK.

11 Nights
Prices from:
£1875 per person

Civil War Trails by Train
Price includes flights, train travel and accommodation.
 

Day 1 Fly from the UK to Washington DC.
Explore the ‘must sees’ such as the Washington Monument and the National Mall, Capitol Building, Smithsonian Museums, International Spy Museum and stop for a picture at the White House. Stay for 2 nights at the Capitol Skyline Hotel

Day 3 Take the Amtrak from Washington DC to Fredericksburg, Virginia. 
Departing 14.30 arriving 15.39. Here you can take a trolley tour of the town and up to the Fredericksburg battle site (leaving from the Visitors Center). You can also visit the battlefield at Chancellorsville. Stay for 2 nights at the Quality Inn Fredericksburg

Day 5 Take the Amtrak from Fredericksburg to Richmond. 
Departing 13.39 arriving 17.12. Here you can visit the State Capitol and the White House of the Confederacy. Other places of interest would be the Museum of the Confederacy, the National Park Service Civil War Visitor Center and Monument Avenue.  Stay for 2 nights at the Baymont Inn & Suites Richmond.

Day 7 Take the Amtrak from Richmond to Alexandria. 
Departing 09.30 arriving 11.50.Take a trip over to Arlington House (Robert E Lee’s plantation home) and Arlington National Cemetery or visit Fort Ward Museum where one of the 68 forts that ringed the Federal capital has been restored. Stay for 1 night at the Comfort Inn Alexandria. 

Day 8 Return to the airport in time for your flight back to the UK

7 Nights
Prices from:
£869 per person

Atlantic City & Philadelphia By Train
Price includes flights, accommodation and train travel
 

Day 1
Fly from the UK to Philadelphia.
This vibrant and exciting city will bring you straight back to the 21st Century, yet it is also steeped in history. A great way to discover all the city has on offer is to take a trolley tour and you can then pick the spots you want to see more of – the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall or one of the many museums. Shopping (which is tax free on clothing and shoes!), restaurants and nightlife abound and there are several distinct neighbourhoods to enjoy, such as the Historic District, Rittenhouse Square or Fairmont Park area. Stay for 2 nights

Day 2
At leisure in Philadelphia

Day 3
Take the Amtrak train from Philadelphia to Atlantic City. 
Shopping is Tax Free in Atlantic City and there are several shopping malls, outlets and plazas to choose from. Visit an aquarium, take a sightseeing or dolphin-watching cruise, climb a lighthouse, visit a museum, play miniature or real golf, take a sightseeing tour, visit a winery, relax on the beach, go fishing, take a rolling chair ride on the Boardwalk…and when you’re tired from all that activity, enjoy a massage at one of our luxurious spas. Atlantic City has it all. Stay for 2 nights. 

Day 4
At leisure in Atlantic City. 

Day 5
Take the Amtrak train from Atlantic City back to Philadelphia and make your way back to the airport in time for your flight back to the UK

4 Nights
Prices from:
£758 per person
Rocky Mountaineer

One of Canada’s best known trains, the Rocky Mountaineer operates during the summer months linking Seattle, Whistler and Vancouver with the mountain towns of Jasper, Banff and Calgary.

The trips are two day journeys with an overnight stay in either Kamloops or Quesnel ensuring you make the spectacular journey in daylight.

There are three classes of travel:

Red Leaf – with reclining seats, guided commentary and meals served at your seat.

Silver Leaf – Comfortable wide seats in a glass-roofed carriage, guided commentary and meals served at your seat.

Gold Leaf – plush reclining seats on the upper level of a two-storey glassdomed carriage. There is an open-air viewing platform. The lower level of the carriage is where breakfast and lunch is served. A selection of complimentary wines, beers and spirits are available. The most popular journeys operate:

2 Days
Prices from:
£815 per person
VIA Rail Holidays

VIA Rail offers a number of iconic train journeys across Canada – if you want to leave your car behind and board a train we would be happy to arrange journey to suit you. 

Some of the best trips are:

Jasper, Alberta to Prince Rupert, British Columbia
A two-day daylight journey through the Yellowhead Pass stopping overnight in Prince George and continuing on to the coastal city of Prince Rupert.

‘The Canadian’
VIAs flagship train travels between Toronto and Vancouver across the Northern Ontario lake lands, the wide open prairies and the Canadian Rockies. The journey takes 4 days and is a comfortable way to travel, meals are included.

‘The Corridor’
A great way to visit Eastern Canada’s cities of Montreal, Quebec City, Ottawa, Toronto, Kingston and Niagara Falls.

‘The Ocean’
Travel along the south shore to the St. Lawrence River waking in the dense forests of Northern New Brunswick. You can get off in Moncton to explore the
Bay of Fundy and Prince Edward Island and then continue on to Halifax the capital of Nova Scotia.

Montreal to the Gaspé Peninsula, Quebec
You will travel along the south shore to the St. Lawrence River and down the Matapedia valley and then on to Gaspé. 

Multi-Day Journeys
Prices available on request

Amtrak Cabin Types

Superliner Roomette

Superliner Roomettes are ideal for one or two passengers, with two comfortable reclining seats on either side of a big picture window. At night, the seats convert to a comfortable bed, and an upper berth folds down from above. 

Roomettes are located on both upper and lower levels of double-decker Superliner train cars and include the following amenities: meals, picture window, two reclining seats which convert to a bed; upper berth which folds down from wall, available on both upper and lower levels of the Superliner, electrical outlets, climate control, individual reading lights, garment rack, fold-down table, fresh towels and bed linens, soap and shower amenities,  bottled water and personal turn-down service. There are no in-cabin toilet or shower; restrooms, showers nearby in same train car.

Sleeps 1-2 people

Superliner Bedroom

Superliner Bedrooms are ideal for two passengers, but can accommodate three (two passengers must share the lower berth). Each room has a large sofa with two individually reclining sections, and a reclining easy chair.

At night, the sofa converts to a comfortable bed, and an upper berth folds down from above. All Superliner Bedrooms feature private, self-enclosed restrooms with toilet, sink and shower. All Bedrooms are located on the upper level of our double-decker Superliner train cars and include the following amenities: meals, large picture windows, upper and lower berths, armchair and sofa (converts to a lower berth, private sink, vanity, private toilet and shower, electrical outlets, climate control, individual reading lights, garment rack, fold-down table, fresh towels and bed linens, soap and shower amenities,  bottled water and personal turn-down service.

Sleeps 2-3 people

Superliner Bedroom Suite

The Superliner Bedroom Suite is made up of two Superliner Bedrooms opened up and combined together. The Suite is designed for four passengers (but can accommodate up to six).

The suite offers two private, self-enclosed toilets and showers in the cabin.  All Superliner Bedrooms feature private, self-enclosed restrooms with toilet, sink and shower. All Bedrooms are located on the upper level of our double-decker Superliner train cars and include the following amenities: meals, large picture windows, upper and lower berths, armchair and sofa (converts to a lower berth, private sink, vanity, private toilet and shower, electrical outlets, climate control, individual reading lights, garment rack, fold-down table, fresh towels and bed linens, soap and shower amenities,  bottled water and personal turn-down service.

Sleeps 4-6 people