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Autumn at the Greenbrier & Historic Trains

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The nation’s history comes to life in many forms on this exceptional fall tour through the mountains, featuring time in Washington D.C., rides aboard three heritage trains and a stay at one of the nation’s oldest resorts.

You are viewing the 2021 itinerary. Select your departure year
20212022
9 days Sold out

2021 Tour code: EC-AGBA-21

About the tour

Vibrant shades of red, orange and yellow grace the mountainsides of West Virginia and Virginia on this autumn journey. Enjoy the beautiful scenery aboard three heritage railways and enjoy the landscape from one of the oldest and most luxurious resorts in America. The journey begins in our nation's capital, Washington, D.C., a modern metropolis rooted in history. Your time here is highlighted by a guided tour of the city and ample time to explore at leisure. From museums to monuments, there is no shortage of sights to behold. Our journey continues into rural West Virginia, where nostalgic rail excursions are perhaps the most wonderful way to soak in the mountain scenery. Ride aboard the Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad, the Cass Scenic Railroad and the New Tygart Flyer lines before traveling by Amtrak's Cardinal to White Sulphur Springs, WV, home to the magnificent Greenbrier Resort, where we enjoy a two-night stay. One last dose of American history and natural beauty rounds out the tour with a day trip to Thomas Jefferson's Monticello in Charlottesville, VA. Ideal for train enthusiasts, history buffs and leaf peepers alike, this journey through the Virginias is sure to please. 

Highlights

Activity level Natural Explorer

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You don’t mind spending the day on your feet. You enjoy sightseeing that includes walking, standing or stair climbing. You’re okay with longer days that are more active, such as multiple sightseeing stops, longer motorcoach journeys and getting on and off ships and trains.

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 – Washington, D.C.

Arrive in Washington, D.C. and transfer on your own to your conveniently located hotel. You have time to settle into your comfortable accommodations ahead of meeting with your group and Tour Manager for a quick briefing of the extraordinary adventures to come. Following the meeting, the evening is yours to enjoy the ambiance of the capital. Perhaps check out one of the many fine-dining establishments or visit the monuments and memorials to see them aglow in soft lighting. Overnight Washington, D.C.

Day 2 – Washington, D.C. Sightseeing Tour

After breakfast, get a lay of the land with a motorcoach tour of the city. With thoughtful narration to guide the way and add insight, enjoy some of the most famous landmarks throughout the city, including Capitol Hill, the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials, the Washington Memorial and its reflecting pool, and many of the highlights of the National Mall. 

The remainder of the day is yours to further your explorations. The Smithsonian Museums are truly spectacular, as is the National Gallery of Art. Explore the historic homes of Georgetown or venture out to Arlington National Cemetery to visit the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Overnight Washington, D.C. 

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 3 – Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad

We depart the nation's capital by motorcoach this morning and make our way to Romney, WV. On arrival, we board the Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad for a memorable 3-hour train trip through the colorful Allegheny Mountains of West Virginia. The route takes us through the Trough, a 6-mile gorge on the South Branch of the Potomac River. Vibrant hues of autumn blanket the mountains and make this ride memorable. As the train pulls back into the station, we reboard the motorcoach and continue our travels to Elkins. Overnight Elkins, WV.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch
Day 4 – Cass Scenic Railroad

Another romantic rail adventure beckons today as we travel by coach to Cass to board the Cass Scenic Railroad. This railroad dates back to 1901 and follows the same route that lumber millers traveled over 100 years ago. Ride aboard vintage Shay steam locomotives and enjoy picturesque views of mountain and milling towns as you traverse the 11-mile route. You have a chance to explore the buildings of the onsite museum, as well. We return to Elkins following the excursion with the evening at leisure. Overnight Elkins, WV. 

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch
Day 5 – New Tygart Flyer

Mountains, waterfalls and splendid fall scenery are all on the itinerary as we join the New Tygart Flyer for a mountain railroad adventure. We board the train at the restored Elkins station and enjoy a 4-hour, 46-mile round trip journey through the West Virginia wilderness. We set out on vintage, diesel-powered trains for an excursion along the Cheat River. Travel through S curves and along steep mountain grades. Breathtaking panoramas abound, as do the scenes of fall foliage that engulf the forests at this time of the year. The ride culminates at the High Falls of Cheat, a massive waterfall located in one of the most remote and tranquil settings in the region. Following the ride, we proceed to Charleston, WV, where we retire for the night. Overnight Charleston, WV. 

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch
Day 6 – Train to White Sulphur Springs

Following breakfast this morning, we transfer to the Charleston train station to board Amtrak's Cardinal. The train travels south through the state, whisking through little-seen areas that present the wild beauty of West Virginia. Enjoy sights of mountains, forests and untamed rivers. The train also passes through the beautiful New River Gorge before arriving near the Virginia border in the town of White Sulphur Springs later this afternoon. Upon arrival, a motorcoach takes us through Monongahela National Forest to the ever-impressive Greenbrier Resort, which has been a premier resort destination in the Allegheny Mountains since the 1770s. Over 11,000 acres of pristine land surrounds the luxurious hotel, putting the best of mountain recreation at your fingertips. Dinner this evening is in the resort's impeccable Main Dining Room. Dress code enforced. Overnight White Sulphur Springs, WV. 

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 7 – The Greenbrier Resort

Get an insider's look at one of the most unique features of the Greenbrier Resort today, with a docent-led tour of the now-declassified secret bunker built underneath the hotel in 1958. This bunker was built during the Cold War for the possible evacuation of the President, Senate and the House of Representatives. The remainder of the day is yours to enjoy the resort's amenities. Pamper yourself with a treatment in the mineral spa, or play a game of chance in the casino. The golf courses at the resort are some of the finest in the nation and have played host to myriad tournaments throughout the years. Falconry, fishing, horseback riding, off-roading and kayaking are just a sampling of the excitement to be had on the expansive grounds. Enjoy more fine dining in the resort's well-appointed Main Dining Room tonight. Overnight White Sulphur Springs, WV. 

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 8 – Charlottesville and Monticello

We depart the resort by coach this morning and cross the border into Virginia. Our destination is the beautiful city of Charlottesville, just outside Richmond. This city is filled with history and culture and is home to a hallmark of American history, Thomas Jefferson's Monticello. On arrival at this exceptional property, you have a chance to explore both the house and the grounds, both of which were designed, redesigned and perfected throughout the years. Admire the incredible architecture of the building, and soak in the awe-inspiring views from the gardens. There is so much to love about this property. 

Our day continues with a coach ride to Arlington, where we stay for the night. Overnight Arlington, VA.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 9 – Tour Conclusion

Your autumn tour through West Virginia concludes this morning with a transfer via hotel shuttle to Reagan National Airport for your return flight home.

Additional information

Departure times

Departure times vary based on selected rail vacation. This information will be provided in your final documents. For more information please speak with your rail specialist.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular vacation with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.

Hotels

Hilton Garden Inn Arlington Shirlington

Hilton Garden Inn Arlington Shirlington

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Four Points by Sheraton Charleston

Four Points by Sheraton Charleston

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Holiday Inn Express & Suites Elkins

Holiday Inn Express & Suites Elkins

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Embassy Suites by Hilton Washington DC Georgetown

Embassy Suites by Hilton Washington DC Georgetown

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The Greenbrier, White Sulphur Springs

The Greenbrier, White Sulphur Springs

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Trains

Amtrak's Cardinal
Cass Scenic Railroad
New Tygart Flyer
Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad

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Reviews

4.0 stars4.0 / 5 · 6 reviews

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Judith B., Monona, WI

4 stars

Submitted 25 Oct 2018

Nice group of people and good things to see.

Collected by Vacations By Rail

Ed M., Lakewood, CO

4 stars

Submitted 24 Oct 2018

First VBR tour; impressed with the inclusions and thoroughness of the tours. Great learning experience. Relaxed environment due to a great tour guide. Worry Free!!

Collected by Vacations By Rail

Relda S., Colonial Beach, VA

4 stars

Submitted 09 Oct 2018

Tour guide and coach driver made this trip comfortable and exceeded any expectations. We will plan another trip with VBR!

Collected by Vacations By Rail

Ann G., Noblesville, IN

4 stars

Submitted 08 Aug 2018

We totally enjoyed everything. Would like another tour with Eric. Great!

Collected by Vacations By Rail

Allen B., Monona, WI

4 stars

Submitted 13 Feb 2018

Great trip planning! We both had a simply wonderful time!

Collected by Vacations By Rail

Barbara G., Pacific Groove, CA

4 stars

Submitted 06 Jan 2017

A great tour, tour guide, driver, met new friends.

Collected by Vacations By Rail

Global Rail Adventures Brochure

Global Rail Adventures Brochure

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