The Train Enthusiast
Model train fans will find plenty of trips featuring
a life-size version of their favorite hobby
By Madison G. Welch
Rocky Mountaineer crosses the Canadian Rockies on five unique rail routes. Chugging along at 30 mph, the train lingers on vistas of crystalline lakes, foaming waterfalls and white-capped peaks. Four degrees of service are available; choose GoldLeaf or GoldLeaf Deluxe to ride in a double-level dome with panoramic windows and receive gourmet meals. Guests overnight in hotels en route.
For a taste of train travel, consider a two-day jaunt between Vancouver, British Columbia, and Jasper, Alberta, with prices from $1,284 per person before airfare. For more time on the tracks, take the weeklong "Canadian Rockies Highlights" between Vancouver and Calgary, Alberta. The itinerary includes a helicopter tour and a gondola ride overlooking Banff National Park. Pricing starts at $2,838 per person.
Traverse the Alps
The GoldenPass, the Glacier Express and the Bernina Express: These trains navigate Switzerland and northern Italy while passengers snap photos of picturesque villages and dramatic mountain landscapes throughout the Alps.
You can experience all three railways on "Alpine Lakes & Scenic Trains," a 10-day Collette adventure beginning in Zurich and priced from $3,199 per person, plus airfare. Highlights of this trip include a dinner cruise with cheese fondue on Lake Zurich; a tour of Zermatt, the Swiss town at the foot of the famous Matterhorn; a ferry ride across Italy's Lake Como to Switzerland's Morteratsch Glacier; and an exploration of Lucerne, Switzerland, including the 14th-century Chapel Bridge and other Old Town landmarks.
Revisit the Wild West
Along with stagecoaches, cowboys, bandits and saloons, the train is an enduring symbol of the Old West. In the 1800s, railways decided the fates of many towns in the American wilderness, leading some to population booms and leaving others to bust.
Explore the infamous frontier with Globus' "Historic Trains of the Old West," a nine-day trip from Denver that tours the Mile-High City, Santa Fe in New Mexico, Colorado's Mesa Verde National Park and more. Along the way, you'll ride the Georgetown Loop Railroad, a route that traverses four bridges; the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, operational since 1882; and the Pikes Peak Cog Railway, which climbs to 14,115 feet. Prices start at $2,429 per person.
The information in this story was accurate at the time it was published in January/February 2015. Please visit Vacations To Go or call (800) 680-2858 for current rates and details.