Since the early days of Amtrak, the Empire Builder has been presenting the immense beauty of America's northern states. Travelers are treated to expansive vistas of the Midwestern prairies, views of the Rocky Mountains, glimpses at glaciers, and scenes of stunning cityscapes as the train traverses the heart of the country. In all, the route covers over 2,200 miles and occurs over two days and one night of travel.
Passengers may select from three departure dates per week and enjoy a host of onboard amenities, including access to a double-decker car that features a domed glass Sightseer Lounge on the upper level and a Café Car on the lower level. In the Sightseer Lounge, panoramic windows line the train car, curving up onto the roof for unimpeded views of the passing scenery. The chairs in the Lounge swivel to allow guests to converse with one another or to look outside. Single chairs and groups of up to five are available, as are seats at tables. In the lower-level Café Car, booths sit beside picture windows, offering another perspective on the incredible scenery.
While Amtrak's Empire Builder offers modern amenities and an impressive route that highlights both the Midwest and the Pacific Northwest, the course it follows is anything but new. By one line or another, trains have traversed the route between Chicago and the West Coast on these rails since 1929. A journey on the Empire Builder makes it obvious why this expedition has remained popular for nearly 100 years.