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Lodges of Glacier National Park - 8 Days

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4.2 stars(51 reviews)
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Take in the beauty and history of one of the country's most beloved parks with a tour highlighting outdoor recreation and charming lodges.

You are viewing the 2023 itinerary. Select your departure year
20232024
8 days Not yet on sale
Travel among a group of like-minded travelers led by a professional tour manager

2023 Tour code: RM-LGPA-23

About the tour

One of America's most treasured protected areas, Glacier National Park is brimming with natural beauty. Alpine meadows lead to tall, rugged mountains, and crystalline lakes dot the landscape, providing a playground for water enthusiasts. Each scene is more stunning than the last. Take it in while exploring the local gems and wondrous sights that encompass Big Sky Country. This 8-day journey offers classic overnight travel aboard Amtrak's iconic Empire Builder, as well as a chance to soak in the rugged charm of Whitefish, Montana. Moving into the park, spend time in three fantastic lodges, each boasting unique characteristics and a comforting retreat after a day of exploration. Paired with memorable experiences, like trekking along Going-to-the-Sun Road in 1930s convertible buses and cruising Lake McDonald, this special tour is sure to leave you in awe of the Crown of the Continent.

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.

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What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 – Empire Builder

Your journey to Glacier National Park begins today as you board the Empire Builder from either Chicago or Seattle for a trip through the ruggedly beautiful West. Boarding in Chicago presents the sparkling skylines of the Twin Cities and the wide-open North Dakota Plains. The train ventures across the stunning Gassman Coulee Trestle before reaching Glacier National Park. Seattle travelers enjoy a scenic ride through Washington's forests and Spokane Valley, eventually making their way through Idaho and into Montana, where breathtaking mountain views surround the tracks. Overnight train.

Day 2 – Arrive in Whitefish, MT

Remarkable vistas continue to unfold with each passing mile as the Empire Builder presses forth toward Whitefish, Montana, gateway to Glacier National Park. We are transferred to our hotel on arrival, and here, you are welcome to enjoy the onsite amenities or sit back and relax in anticipation of the adventures to come. Thanks to your hotel's fantastic proximity to downtown Whitefish, there is an excellent selection of restaurants, shops, and nightlife options just a few minutes from the hotel. Overnight Whitefish, MT.

Day 3 - At Leisure in Whitefish

Whitefish is a hub for artists, adventurers, and everyone in between, leading to endless ways to enjoy the city during your free day. Art galleries and boutique shops line Central Avenue and beyond, and the buildings' charming Old West aesthetics complement the imposing Rocky Mountains in the backdrop. Venture to Whitefish Ski Resort to ride the gondola to the summit of Big Mountain or set out on one of the abundant local trailheads. The day is yours to spend as you please. Ask your Tour Manager for suggestions and local tips, if needed. Overnight Whitefish, MT.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 4 – Museum of the Plain Indian

After breakfast at the hotel this morning, we dive into the region's indigenous heritage at the Museum of the Plains Indian. This museum, built in 1941, showcases a collection of art and history from the tribal people of the Northern Plains. Exhibits featuring toys, tools, clothing, and baby carriers piece together the unique cultures of the northern tribes. The day continues as we venture into Glacier National Park with our sights set on Many Glacier Hotel, the largest lodge in the park. This historic gem was built by the Great Northern Railway in 1914 and is tucked away on Swiftcurrent Lake's shore. Overnight Glacier National Park, MT.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 5 – At Leisure in Glacier National Park

Take the day at leisure to enjoy the pure serenity of nature in Glacier National Park. The park is brimming with breathtaking views and idyllic lookouts that are fantastic for photographing or basking in the pristine scenery. With over 700 miles of hiking trails from which to enjoy them, your options are nearly limitless. You can join one of the delightful ranger-led programs if you prefer a guide for your adventures. Overnight Glacier National Park, MT.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 6 – Going to the Sun Road / Lake McDonald Lodge

Glacier's famous Red Jammer buses are the best way to see everything the Crown of the Continent offers as they travel the winding pathway of Going-to-the-Sun Road. The vintage 1930s buses feature roll-back tops so you can take in and photograph the panoramic views with a Big Sky backdrop. A park guide leads your tour, sharing history and stories about the park along the way.

The tour concludes at Lake McDonald Lodge. This Swiss chalet-style hotel was constructed over 100 years ago on the shore of the park's largest lake. The rustic yet comfortable rooms offer modern amenities with anything but modest views. Take the rest of the day to continue discovering the park's highlights through various optional activities, including hiking, kayaking, boating, or fishing. Overnight Glacier National Park, MT.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 7 – Lake McDonald Cruise

Take the morning at leisure to have a cup of coffee while overlooking the impressive mountainscapes or listen to the birds chirping and trees rustling. If you wake before night releases its hold on the sky, consider heading down to Lake McDonald to watch the cotton candy colors of sunrise. After all, the lake is one of the most spectacular sunrise locations in Glacier National Park.

This afternoon, join the group in cruising Lake McDonald's crystal-clear waters. Scenes of jagged mountains and rich evergreen forests reflect on the water, and the wide-open skies overhead give new meaning to Big Sky Country. As we cruise, look below the surface, too, as the lake bed is covered in rainbow-hued rocks ranging from brilliant blue to green, red, and purple. We return to the lodge after, with the rest of the day to continue to admire the park's majesty. Overnight Glacier National Park, MT.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 8 – Tour Conclusion

Your grand tour of Glacier National Park concludes today after breakfast. A group transfer to Glacier Park International Airport in Kalispell or the closest Amtrak station accommodates flights and trains that depart after 1:00 p.m.

Includes
  • Breakfast

Additional information

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

Many Glacier Hotel, Browning

Many Glacier Hotel, Browning

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Lake McDonald Lodge, West Glacier

Lake McDonald Lodge, West Glacier

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Grouse Mountain Lodge, Whitefish

Grouse Mountain Lodge, Whitefish

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Train

Amtrak's Empire Builder

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Reviews

4.2 stars4.2 / 5 · 51 reviews

  1. 5 stars
    (19)
  2. 4 stars
    (24)
  3. 3 stars
    (6)
  4. 2 stars
    (1)
  5. 1 star
    (1)

BONNIE SCARBOROUGH

2 stars

Submitted 18 Oct 2022

The trip to Glacier and the 3 lodges were great. The food was good throughout the trip. The hiking and the excursions were great. Lots of things for all abilities. Plenty of free time to be able to explore on your own. Unfortunately we did not have a good tour guide. She was not prepared and spent most of the time on the tour, preparing for the next part of the trip. We never new what we were doing next. It was up to us to find her or someone else on the trip so see what or when we do things. The down side was the train. This was a very old train, which was OK, except it was not clean. We had a sleeper, which was the only way to travel. The food was OK, at best. I would not book a train trip again unless it was on a new train.

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MICHAEL GATES

3 stars

Submitted 23 Sep 2022

Trip was good but could have had better communication thru-out. Advertises staying in park lodges - true enough - but rooms assigned were NOT the ones with the spectacular views. Our views were on the parking lot or roadway side of the lodges and at one location we did not stay in the lodge at all. We were assigned to an extreemely small room in a 'cabin' on the property were the lake macdonald lodge was. Room was so small it could not accomodate a chair to sit in so if you wanted to spend time in your room you had to sit on the side of the bed or sit on the floor. Guess next time I would book it myself.

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TEDDY LINDSEY

5 stars

Submitted 21 Sep 2022

All three lodges were unique. The rooms were spacious, the beds were comfortable, and the towels were soft. The food in each of the dining rooms was very good.

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Cathy

5 stars

Submitted 21 Sep 2022

Train part was too long with all the delays but the food was good!

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BARBARA JEAN VINCENT

5 stars

Submitted 18 Sep 2022

Overall, the trip was lovely. Little unavoidable things popped in now and again but, overall, I had a great time.

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GARY NEUROHR

4 stars

Submitted 14 Sep 2022

Lodges of Glacier National Park was a great experience. Just the wow of the park was out of this world. Now for the train it should have been cleaned better than it was. This was my first experience on a train in the US. We had to stop for a break down for hours. Then we had to stop and change train engineers. We had to wait another 2 for replacement engineers to arrive. This put us behind 6hr. The new engineers picked up the Pase and we arrived at 2am. Now this was the reason that was given to us???????????? What do you think happened now that they are talking about striking. I did hear some problem about the room space in the Room mates were very tight. I could not sleep up on top bunk. So, we improvised and both of sleep on the bottom bunk. Lori our travel guide was very knowledge about the area. One thing that I felt would help is communication. Lori tried but the reception up there was very spotty. I would suggest laying out the whole trip and posted at every lodge so everyone can read the same thing. If changes need to be made, then message should be left on the phone at the hotel of a notice of changes made and posted in the same area. All in All, we would take the trip again. We had a great time with all the new friends we made and the wilderness and hiking trails

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