Behold the most impressive national parks in the United States – Yellowstone, Glacier and Grand Teton – on this new rail tour to the wild west.
About the Tour
Train rides, mountain scenery and national parks highlight this rail tour of America’s West. Begin with an overnight rail journey aboard the legendary California Zephyr into the Colorado Rockies to Grand Junction. From here, we travel the scenic route to Midway, UT, for two nights at the relaxing Homestead Resort in the Heber Valley. There are plenty of ways to unwind while at the resort, and the surrounding scenes are breathtaking. We immerse ourselves in the regional beauty with a ride on the Heber Valley Railroad into Provo Canyon. Our travels continue to Jackson, WY, stopping en route at the National Oregon/California Trail Center to learn the plights of those that traveled the Oregon Trail. Upon arrival in Jackson, Old West vibes become immediately apparent. From the wooden sidewalks to the antler arch, and from the saloons to the wood-front buildings, this town is an attraction in and of itself. A guided tour through Grand Teton National Park is a highlight of our time here before departing for yet another national treasure: Yellowstone National Park. Two days of touring present some of the most majestic sites in the park, including the Paint Pots and Old Faithful. On the road again, we travel to Kalispell, MT, where the Crown of the Continent awaits our discovery: Glacier National Park. We take in the vistas of this awe-inspiring land from the seats of a vintage Red Jammer Bus as we tour the famous Going-to-the-Sun Road. Eleven days of adventures, three national parks and beloved destinations throughout the Wild West: These are the makings of a rail tour to remember!
- Rail travel on Amtrak (1 night on train)
- Scenic rail excursion on the Heber Valley Railroad
- Hotel accommodations for 10 nights
- 12 meals, including a traditional western barbecue dinner
- Meals on the train included when upgrading to private sleeping accommodations
- National Oregon/California Trail Center visit
- Grand Teton National Park touring, including the Chapel of Transfiguration
- Yellowstone National Park touring, including Old Faithful
- Glacier National Park touring, including the Going-to-the-Sun Road
- National park entrance fees
- Transportation by deluxe motorcoach
- Services of a professional Tour Manager
- Baggage handling
Day 1 – Depart Chicago aboard the California Zephyr
Arrive at Chicago Union Station to meet your tour manager and fellow travelers. Board the California Zephyr, settle into your onboard accommodations and prepare for your overnight rail journey. Travelers may elect to travel from San Francisco or points in between and meet your tour manager in Grand Junction. Overnight train.
Day 2 – California Zephyr to Grand Junction
Admire the changing scenery aboard the train and watch as Colorado’s Rocky Mountains come into view. Upon arrival in Grand Junction, we transfer to our hotel with time to freshen up before a welcome dinner at the hotel. Overnight Grand Junction, CO. (D)
Day 3 – Free day in Grand Junction
Today is free to explore Grand Junction at your leisure or relax at the hotel. Your Tour Manager will be available with dining and sightseeing suggestions. Overnight Grand Junction, CO. (B)
Day 4 – Scenic Drive to Homestead Resort
After breakfast, board your deluxe motorcoach for the drive to Midway, UT, along a scenic route presenting the rugged beauty of Colorado and Utah. Arrive at Homestead Resort with time to enjoy dinner on own. Overnight Midway, UT. (B)
Day 5 – Provo Canyon aboard the Heber Valley Railroad
Discover the glacier-carved landscape of Provo Canyon during a ride aboard the Heber Valley Railroad. The train takes us along the shores of Deer Creek Reservoir and along the banks of the Provo River. We disembark briefly at Vivian Park to take in the scenery before the return journey. The remainder of the day is free to explore the resort’s amenities, including the world-famous Homestead Crater, with its 96-degree mineral-rich hot spring. Overnight Midway, UT. (B)
Day 6 - National Oregon/California Trail Center
Immerse yourself in the mountainous scenes of Utah, Idaho and Wyoming as we travel from Midway to Jackson, WY. En route, we stop at the National Oregon/California Trail Center, situated on the site of the original Oregon Trail. Hear stories of the harrowing journey presented by actors in period clothing and experience a simulated wagon ride. Back on the road, we continue to Jackson—Wyoming’s quintessential cowboy town—with the evening free to enjoy out hotel’s amenities or the activities in Jackson’s historic Town Square. Overnight Jackson, WY. (B)
Day 7 – Grand Teton National Park
Delight in the grandeur of the Grand Teton Mountain peaks as we travel through Grand Teton National Park. Highlights include the Chapel of Transfiguration, a beautiful log chapel with outstanding views of the Tetons, and the Colter Bay Visitor Center. Lunch is on your own at the Jackson Lake Lodge, where 60-foot floor-to-ceiling windows frame Jackson Lake and the majestic Teton Range. This afternoon, we drive to America’s first national park, Yellowstone. Overnight Yellowstone National Park, WY. (B)
Day 8 – Yellowstone National Park
Today’s full-day guided tour showcases some of Yellowstone’s most impressive sites, including Mammoth Hot Springs, Tower Falls, Tower Junction, Artist Point and the Upper and Lower Falls of the Yellowstone River. Overnight Yellowstone National Park, WY. (B)
Day 9 – Old Faithful & Yellowstone National Park
Enjoy a day of touring in Yellowstone National Park. Our tour manager takes us through Hayden Valley, where meadows, forests and geothermic hot spots collide, the famous Paint Pots and the park’s hot springs. A highlight of the day is seeing Old Faithful in action. This geyser sends a hot stream of water 100 feet into the air every 91 minutes, and we are lucky enough to see an eruption. Tonight, enjoy dinner with new friends. Overnight Yellowstone National Park, WY. (D)
Day 10 – Big Sky Country Scenery to Kalispell, MT
See the magnificent landscapes of Big Sky Country on our way to Kalispell, MT, with a lunch stop at Wheat Montana Deli for a taste of farm-to-table goodness. We arrive at the Western Gateway to Glacier National Park, Kalispell, with the remainder of the day at leisure. Overnight Kalispell, MT. (B)
Day 11 – Going-to-the-Sun Road & Glacier National Park
Experience Glacier National Park’s pristine forests, alpine meadows, rugged mountains and spectacular lakes today. We travel along the Going-to-the-Sun Road aboard a vintage Red Jammer bus. The drive covers 50 miles and showcases stunning sights of mountain scenery and abundant wildlife. This evening, we join the cowboys for a western outdoor barbecue dinner. Overnight Kalispell, MT. (B, D)
Day 12 – Tour Conclusion
Your western experience concludes after breakfast this morning. Transportation is provided from the hotel to Whitefish Amtrak Station or Glacier International Airport. (B)
Hotels include the DoubleTree Grand Junction, Homestead Resort (Midway), Rustic Inn (Jackson), Canyon Lodge (Yellowstone National Park) and Hilton Hometown Inn & Suites (Kalispell)
Heber Valley Railroad
Look over the Heber Valley, Provo Canyon, Mount Timpanogos and Deer Creek Reservoir from heritage railcars aboard the Heber Valley Railroad. This railway was first established in 1899, yet with the building of a local highway in the 1930s, had to be rebuilt in 1939. By the 1960s, freight transportation on the railway suffered, and in the 1970s, the Heber Valley Railroad became a tourist attraction. It was not until 1993, though, that this historic railway became the attraction that it is today. Now, travelers ride aboard fully restored steam and diesel engines en route to Vivian Park on the Provo Canyon Limited line. The round trip journey takes approximately 3 hours.
Additional departure dates are available featuring an 11 Day itinerary.
It is your responsibility to check and fulfill the passport, visa, health and immigration requirements applicable to your itinerary. We do not accept any responsibility if you cannot travel, or incur any other loss because you have not complied with any passport, visa, immigration requirements or health formalities. You agree to reimburse us in relation to any fines or other losses which we incur as a result of your failure to comply with any passport, visa, immigration requirements or health formalities.
Tour Dates & Prices
Register for Free Notification of 2022 Dates & Prices
Sign up to receive insider access and special deals on 2022 departures of Best of the Western Parks - 12 Days.