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An epic exploration, east meets west on this grand trip across Canada, taking you coast to coast on VIA Rail's renowned train, The Canadian.You'll enjoy Insider moments like getting an inside look at Canada's stunning scenery – by rail and road. On the east coast, it's uncovering the lush wine-growing region of the Niagara Peninsula. On the west coast, it's encountering the dramatic Rockies, from the forests to the glaciers of the Columbia Icefield and Icefields Parkway. And, of course, it's meeting locals, like our vintner friends in British Columbia, who invite you to taste their wines and dine with them.
Please note that this holiday can be taken as an escorted tour or individual tailor-made adventure....Please call Bon Voyage to discuss your ideal trip..
Solo Traveller? Offers available, please call for details.
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Set out for Stanley Park to see its towering totem poles and explore historic Chinatown and Gastown. Travel by ferry to Vancouver Island and visit a family-owned winery and taste the perfectly-balanced vintages. Indulge in a Be My Guest lunch featuring local cuisine delicately paired with their delicious wines. Later, arrive in quaint Victoria.
Greet the day with breakfast at Butchart Gardens, a 55-acre showcase of gorgeous floral gardens. Meet with a representative who can answer any questions and then spend some time exploring on your own. Back in Victoria, enjoy a guided city tour and enjoy the rest of the day as you wish. This evening, dinner is up to you with a selection of delectable restaurants for a your choice dining experience.
Set out for Chemainus, famous for its outdoor murals. Return to the mainland by ferry and drive along the scenic Sea-to-Sky Highway. Board the Sea-to-Sky Gondola and ride all the way to Summit Lodge while enjoying sweeping views. Later this afternoon, arrive in Whistler.
Start the morning with a guided walking tour led by a Local Specialist. Learn about the history of the resort and its significance to the 2010 winter Olympics. Next, step into a fascinating world where ancient ways meet modern life at the Squamish Lil'wat Cultural Centre. Your Local Specialist, an authentic First Nations ambassador, will greet you with a warm welcome in traditional song. This afternoon is at leisure in Whistler.
Sample the best of Canada's natural treasures in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks. Travel through Mount Revelstoke National Park, enter Glacier National Park and crossing the Columbia River, arrive in Yoho National Park. Cross the Continental Divide, enter Banff National Park and arrive at your quintessential mountain resort for a relaxing two-night stay. Enjoy dinner and a Local Specialist presentation where you will learn all about the Royal Canadian Mounted Police from a real life "Mountie."
Arrive on the shores of lovely Lake Louise with a short lakeside talk. Get ready for a unique adventure at the Columbia Icefield where you board an Ice Explorer and drive on the massive Athabasca Glacier. Later this afternoon, arrive at your hotel in the heart of Jasper National Park.
Enjoy an interpretive walk on the trails of Maligne Canyon, one of the most beautiful gorges in the Canadian Rockies. Then, embark on a private, narrated cruise on the serene waters of iconic Maligne Lake. Stop at Spirit Island, before returning to Jasper. Later this afternoon, bid farewell to your Travel Director and fellow travellers as you board VIA Rail's The Canadian for your independent transcontinental journey across Canada, from Jasper to Toronto, as you see the legendary scenery, one of the most renowned long-distance journeys in the world. Get settled in and relax in your Sleeper Plus or Prestige Sleeper Class (optional upgrade) compartment, aboard newly renovated cars.
Enjoy the full experience of travelling aboard VIA Rail's flagship: delicious meals are prepared fresh by local chefs and served in the elegant, fully renovated dining cars. Enjoy wine tastings and interactive presentations on the history, geography and culture of the regions you travel through. From time to time, musicians play on board, providing a soundtrack for the journey. As you travel across the continent, take in the sweeping landscapes from the comfort of your private compartment or from the Bullet Lounge, Mural Lounge or the scenic glass dome Skyline and Park cars, where you can unwind with a coffee or make new acquaintances.
Arrive in Toronto, Canada's most cosmopolitan city located on the shore of Lake Ontario. On arrival, you will be met and taken to your recently renovated hotel in the heart of Toronto's vibrant city. Time permitting, start exploring Toronto with your complimentary “hop-on, hop-off” city sightseeing tour. Note: Your scheduled arrival at Toronto Union Station is scheduled for 9:30 a.m., but local rail traffic conditions may result in service disruptions and delays. Should you arrive too late to enjoy your complimentary “hop-on, hop-off” city sightseeing tour, we will replace it with with another ticket valid for Day 15 before your departure time; we therefore recommend a later flight on Day 15 to avoid any disappointment.
Take in the picturesque countryside of the Niagara Peninsula and stop at one of the local wineries, where you can sample selections of some of Ontario's finest wines. Continue on along the Niagara Parkway to the Falls with photo opportunities at the famed Floral Clock. Following lunch with stunning views of the falls, board the Hornblower for an exhilarating boat ride to the base of the majestic Horseshoe Falls. There is some free time around the Falls, before heading back towards Niagara-on-the-Lake, stopping along the way for photo opportunities at the observation deck. Once in historic Niagara-on-the-Lake, you will have time to stroll through the charming street, soaking up the history and heritage of one of Canada's most famous landmarks. Return to Toronto, arriving back at your hotel late afternoon.
Your journey comes to an end however your adventure doesn't have to end here. You may decide to extend your stay and head over the border to New York for a few days or perhaps include a visit to Niagara Falls.
Call the Canada and USA specialists at Bon Voyage to discuss your perfect Contrast of Canada adventure.