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Rails to the Rim Adventure from Chicago - 6 Day Tour
The Grand Canyon is one of the world's top natural attractions. Visit one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World on this exciting rail adventure. Beginning in Chicago, board Amtrak's Southwest Chief bound for Williams Junction, Arizona, where you will catch the historic Grand Canyon Railway for your journey to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. This 6-day rail vacation includes round-trip travel on Amtrak's Southwest Chief, roundtrip travel on the Grand Canyon Railway, hotel accommodations, sightseeing at the Grand Canyon, and more!
This vacation can be booked online for departures from the following Amtrak stations: Chicago, St. Louis, Kansas City, Denver, and Albuquerque. For other departure cities, please select the Chicago location and a rail specialist will contact you within 48 hours with a package customized with a departure from your most convenient Amtrak station.
Want to leave from Los Angeles?
- Roundtrip rail transportation on Amtrak's Southwest Chief
- Meals onboard the train when upgrading to a roomette or bedroom
- Roundtrip coach class train travel on the Grand Canyon Railway (upgrades available)
- Hotel accommodations for three nights
- Breakfast and dinner at the Grand Depot Cafe
- Motorcoach South Rim tour
- Roundtrip transfers from Williams Junction, AZ railway station to Grand Canyon Railway Hotel
Scenic highlights include:
- Raton Pass
- Red Cliffs of New Mexico
- Rio Grande River
- Kneeling Nun
- Little Colorado River
- Canyon Diablo
- San Francisco Peak
- Grand Canyon
- Mohave Point
- Hermits Rest
Day 1 – Depart Chicago aboard Amtrak’s Southwest Chief
Board Amtrak’s Southwest Chief and prepare for a 3:00 pm departure for Williams Junction, Arizona. Make the most of your time on the train, meeting your fellow travelers and ensuring a visit to the Sightseer Lounge with its floor-to-ceiling windows offering impressive views of the picture-perfect scenery passing before you. As your train crosses the mighty Mississippi, cutting across Illinois, briefly into Iowa, and then onto Missouri, enjoy a hot meal in the Dining Car before retiring for the evening. Overnight train. (D Sleeping Car passengers only)
Day 2 – Southwest Chief to Williams Junction, Arizona
he sun rises as you leave Kansas and travel through southern Colorado. Start your day with breakfast in the Dining Car followed by a series of presentations from volunteer park rangers as part of the Trails & Rails program (seasonal). Enjoy hearing stories and viewing artifacts from the region as your travel through Colorado and New Mexico. Your train arrives in Williams Junction, Arizona around 9:30 this evening. A shuttle will transfer you from the rail station to your hotel. Overnight Grand Canyon Railway Hotel. (B, L, D Sleeping Car Passengers only)
Day 3 – Historic Grand Canyon Railway Train
Wake-up early and enjoy a hearty breakfast buffet at the Grand Depot Cafe. Then board the vintage rail cars of the Grand Canyon Railway for a 9:30 am departure to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. Travel the same route as other notable Railway passengers before you including William Howard Taft, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Clark Gable, Jimmy Durante, and Doris Day. Upon arrival you will be met by tour buses waiting to take you on a Freedom Tour of the Grand Canyon. This narrated motorcoach tour of the South Rim visits the most scenic overlooks of the canyon, with stops at breathtaking vistas including Mohave Point, Pima Point, the Abyss, and Hermits Rest. Overnight Maswik Lodge. (B)
Day 4 – Grand Canyon at Your Leisure
Spend the morning exploring the South Rim on your own or take another guided tour. There are several historical buildings worth visiting including Buckey O’Neill’s Cabin, the longest continually standing structure in the South Rim; Desert View Watchtower with one of the few views of the bottom of the Canyon and the Colorado River; and Bright Angel Lodge with its small museum honoring Fred Harvey, who played a prominent role in popularizing the Grand Canyon. Board the Grand Canyon Railway southbound to Williams at 3:30 pm. Dinner this evening is at the Grand Depot Cafe. Overnight Grand Canyon Railway Hotel. (D)
Day 5 – Southwest Chief Chicago-bound
Wake-up early and transfer to Williams Junction to board Amtrak’s Southwest Chief to Chicago. Nap, read a book, or spend the day marveling at the canyons, deserts, mountains, missions, pueblos, and ranches that comprise the colorful scenery and getting to know your fellow travelers. Overnight train. (B, L, D Sleeping Car passengers only)
Day 6 – Arrive at Chicago’s Union Station
Awake to the wheat fields of the Midwest this morning. Leisurely prepare for your arrival in Chicago a little after 3:15 pm. You may elect to extend your stay in the Windy City with a variety of hotel and sightseeing packages. (B, L Sleeping Car passengers only)
Hotels include the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel and Maswik Lodge. Amtrak accommodations are in Coach class and include a reclining seat with leg rest and access to the Sightseer Lounge car.
Upgrades to Roomette and Bedroom sleeping accommodations are available for an additional fee and include all meals aboard the train.
Hotel accommodations are based on availability; substitutes will be similar in quality and amenities.
Prices are per person based on double occupancy, tax included. All reservations are based upon availability at time of booking.Connecting rail from your city is available upon request. Contact a rail specialist for details.