Sightseeing:In Calgary and Vancouver; orientation tour in Jasper, Columbia Icefield (Ice Explorer ride), Stanley Park, and Butchart Gardens. Inside visits as shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description, including admission charges where applicable.
Scenic Highlights:Banff National Park, Lake Louise, Jasper National Park, Thompson River, Monashee Mountains, Fraser Canyon, Strait of Georgia, and the Gulf Islands.
Services of a professional Tour Director.
Welcome to Calgary! Your Tour Director is on hand late this afternoon to answer any questions.
Day 2Calgary–Banff National Park
The discovery of oil converted this cattle ranching town into a thriving, sophisticated city. Guided sightseeing shows off downtown, Fort Calgary, Stampede Park, the Saddledome, and Canada Olympic Park. Next, drive west through the foothills of the Rockies into BANFF NATIONAL PARK. (B)
Day 3Banff National Park
Full day at leisure. Banff is one of Canada’s favorite resorts—your Tour Director will suggest an optional helicopter ride over the Canadian Rockies.
Day 4Banff National Park–Lake Louise–Columbia Icefield–Jasper National Park
First stop is Lake Louise, whose cold waters reflect the surrounding mountains and glaciers. Precipitous gorges, snowcapped mountain ranges, and exquisite lakes come into view as the motorcoach scales two mountain passes. Another highlight today is a stop at the COLUMBIA ICEFIELD to experience the Ice Explorer, an all-terrain vehicle that travels on ice measuring 1,200 feet thick. Late this afternoon, join our optional float trip down the historic Athabasca River. In Jasper, an orientation tour showcases the unspoiled beauty. Accommodation for the next two nights is in JASPER NATIONAL PARK.
Day 5Jasper National Park
Join the optional narrated cruise on Maligne Lake to Spirit Island. On the return journey, you’ll be mesmerized by dramatic Maligne Canyon. With much of the afternoon and evening free, consider hiking or exploring Jasper’s local charm.
Day 6Jasper National Park–VIA Rail the Canadian
On VIA Rail’s the Canadian, a late-afternoon departure allows you one last chance to explore Jasper before you transfer to the train station for the overnight run west across Canada’s Rocky Mountains to Vancouver. The Canadian features renovated cars, comfortable cabin accommodations in Sleeper Plus class, and delicious meals. Enjoy regional cuisine over a 3-course dinner in the dining car. Spend time in the Skyline car, with dome seating and a lounge area, or relax in the Park car and meet other travelers. The comfortable cabins come with bed turndown service, in-car shower access, and lots of little extras, such as a personal toiletry kit. (D)
Day 7VIA Rail the Canadian–Vancouver
Continue through the ranchlands along the South Thompson River, the fertile fields of the Fraser Valley, and snowcapped Coast Mountains. Upon arrival in Vancouver, your day is at leisure for independent sightseeing. (B)
Day 8Vancouver–Ferry Crossing–Victoria
Morning sightseeing focuses on Vancouver’s Chinatown, Gastown, and lovely STANLEY PARK. Afterward, sail across the Strait of Georgia through the spectacular Gulf Islands, known for its Mediterranean-like climate. Afternoon sightseeing in Victoria includes world-famous BUTCHART GARDENS, Bastion Square, and Thunderbird Park with its collection of totem poles.
Day 9Victoria–Ferry Crossing–Vancouver
Morning departure for Vancouver. The trip ends today with guests departing on individual schedules. Transfers to Vancouver International Airport are included. Please schedule flights after 1:30 pm.
Transportation:Private bedroom from Jasper to Vancouver in Sleeper Plus Class; ferry crossing to/from Vancouver Island; private, deluxe airconditioned motorcoach while touring
1 breakfast; on VIA Rail—1 breakfast, 1 dinner
With Cosmos, there’s no better way to get to know your destination than through the eyes of your Tour Director. Averaging over a decade... we’d like you to meet a Tour Director, who is representative of the type of expert that will be with you on your vacation.
Years of Experience: 17 years
Born in Calgary, I caught the travel bug while teaching in Europe-and I haven't looked back since! Western Canada is my preferred travel destination, and having the Rockies in my backyard to enjoy year round is indeed a privilege! I've also had the thrill of introducing many visitors to Calgary's famous Stampede every July. I'm a proud Canadian and proud Calgarian. I am here to share the pride and love I have for my country--its people, culture, food, geography, and history.