Day 1. Fri. your airport / Salt Lake City / Calgary.
Make your way to the airport for your flight to Calgary via Salt Lake City. On arrival you will proceed through customs and immigration and collect your luggage. Look for your driver holding a sign board with YOUR NAME displayed. You will meet your private driver in the arrivals hall and be transferred to your hotel. Check in and relax.
You have the remainder of the day free with tickets to the top of Calgary Tower (Just 3 minutes walking distance from your hotel to the Tower – tickets enclosed).
Dinner Reservations: The Catch Restaurant inside Hyatt hotel. At 6:30pm
Overnight: Hyatt Regency Hotel Calgary (D)
Day 2. Sat. Calgary / Kananaskis /Banff. (Seat in coach | Full day – 8:05am)
Depart Calgary for a full-day tour concluding in Lake Louise. Please have breakfast at Thomson in the morning and you will need to be checked out by 7:45am, and then be in the lobby with your suitcases ready by 8:00am as the coach will be departing at 8:05am this morning. Journey to Kananaskis for an included Summit Helicopter Tour.
Summit Helicopter Tour 12 MINUTES
Put on your best James Bond accent and take to the skies with a Summit Helicopter Tour. This 12-minute spine-tingling adventure will have you soaring 2,300 meters above sea level, giving you a totally incredible view of glaciers, mountain vistas, lakes, and waterfalls. This is the Rockies as you’ve never seen them.
Continue to Banff for a sightseeing tour including Bow Falls, Lake Minnewanka, Surprise Corner, and the Hoodoos. Not like your typical waterfalls, the Bow Falls is wide and short. You might feel some mist from the waterfalls during the mid-summer due to the high water levels. You can also see the valley that was eroded by glacier activity and the Bow River over the years.
Late afternoon or even evenings will be quietest times to visit here. Hoodoos are composed sedimentary rock covered by harder rock that is harder to erode. Once softer sediment erodes rock needle, or tower like natural obstacles are left. To get there, the coach drives up Tunnel Mountain road from the town. Pass the hotels on top of the hill and you will pass a campground on your left.
The coach continues and you will find the sign on your right. Locally known as Surprise Corner (but there is no sign), this is the spot where most of the famous pictures have been taken of the historic Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel!
As you drive the Tunnel Mountain road from town, you get to Surprise Corner where it opens up suddenly and you can see the Banff Springs Hotel on your right. You may have seen this view somewhere already. Typically in a book or on a postcard. The best time to take pictures here is late morning or mid-day.
Admission to the Banff Gondola is included. Your tour ends in Lake Louise late this afternoon.
Journey to the top of the Banff Gondola to see a whole new side of Sulphur Mountain and the Canadian Rockies. We’ve completely rebuilt, redesigned and reimagined our mountaintop experience, creating a world-class indoor experience that equals the awe-inspiring ridgetop boardwalk 2900 ft. above Banff.
From new restaurants and interactive exhibits to a multisensory theatre and a breathtaking 360-degree rooftop observation deck, the all-new Banff Gondola experience heightens every sense.
Your tour ends in Lake Louise late this afternoon where your driver will pull up to this gorgeous hotel overlooking Lake Louise. The bellman will handle everyone’s luggage as you check in to your rooms. (Not everyone disembarks, those on silver level will move to different hotels) Your itinerary is confirmed for this hotel which is Gold level.
Dinner Reservations: Fairview Restaurant inside Fairmont Lake Louise at 6:30pm
Overnight: Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. (BD)
Day 3. Sun. Banff / Ice Fields / Banff. (Seat in coach | Full day) / Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise / Ice Fields / (9:45am / 5:45pm)
Enjoy a full day tour to Jasper National Park along the scenic Icefields Parkway.
Tour the Athabasca Glacier in a giant six-wheel drive Ice Explorer vehicle while your guide explains the history of this ancient glacier and points out interesting geological features. Think of it like a “monster-truck meets glacier” adventure where you learn new things!
Afterwards, stops will be made at Bow and Peyto Lakes before arriving back in Lake Louise this afternoon. During this tour, you would need long sleeve shirts, light jacket, long pants, socks and shoes. Sunscreen, sunglasses and camera.
Dinner Reservations: Walliser Stube Restaurant, inside Fairmont Lake Louise Hotel at 6
Overnight: Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. (BD)
Day 4. Mon. Lake Louise. (Morning free) / Lake Louise / Yoho / Banff. (Seat in coach tour | Half Day)
This morning explore beautiful Lake Louise on your own. Most folks sleep in and others walk the lake trails which mostly go around either side of the lake – the scenery is forever etched in your minds.
After lunch, a half-day tour takes you into Yoho National Park to view some of its natural wonders including the Spiral Tunnels, Emerald Lake, and a natural rock bridge that spans the Kicking Horse River.
Afterwards, at 2:00pm, you will be on tour to Yoho Park and then transferred into Banff.
Dinner Reservations: The Old Spaghetti Factory 2 minute walk from your hotel at 6:30pm
Overnight: Banff Ptarmigan Inn (B)
Day 5. Tue. Banff. (Free Day – enjoy the village like city of Banff)
Explore Banff National Park on your own. Optional activities include the mineral pools at Upper Hot Springs, a nature walk on nearby mountain trails, historic museums, Lake Minnewanka or golf at The Fairmont Banff Springs.
One of the highlights in the town of Banff is to walk at sunset or dusk and watch for the wildlife which roams the town. The Moose and Deer could not care less for the people. They come to dine on the green grasses of the downtown areas. It is also a day to relax and slowdown from all the traveling. Enjoy the day off.
Dinner Reservations: Castello Ristorante, Fairmont Banff Springs at 6:30pm
Overnight: Banff Ptarmigan Inn (B)
Day 6. Wed. Banff / Kamloops. (Rocky Mountaineer Rail Journey)
Enjoy an early morning breakfast at 6:00am and check out by 7:00am. Travel onboard the Rocky Mountaineer from the mountain town of Banff to Kamloops, in the heart of the BC Interior.
Enjoy the spectacular array of scenery as you travel between the glacier and snow-capped peaks of the Canadian Rockies, over mountain passes and through remarkable tunnels, along rocky lakeshores and across the ranchlands of the Interior.
Today’s highlights include the Continental Divide, the Spiral Tunnels, Kicking Horse Canyon, Rogers Pass, and Craigellachie, where the last spike of the Canadian Pacific Railway was driven. Overnight in Kamloops.
Also known as the Great Divide, the Continental Divide is the line following the height of land that separates areas drained by rivers that flow to opposite sides of the North American continent. In Canada, the water flowing in rivers eventually reaches the sea in either the Arctic, Atlantic or Pacific oceans.
The line dividing rivers flowing west to the Pacific from drainage to the Arctic and Atlantic is easiest to visualize, since it lies along the main ranges of the Rocky Mts.
Often it is convenient to use such natural boundaries for human organization, and the Alberta-British Columbia border follows the divide for a considerable distance, as does the border between the Yukon and Northwest Territories.
Spiral Tunnels: When British Columbia joined Confederation in 1871, it was on the condition that Prime Minister John A. Macdonald would build a railway to link the province to the rest of the country. Building a railway across such a large continent was a major undertaking and one of the most serious obstacles was the Rocky Mountains.
Several passes were considered for the route and despite its rugged terrain, Kicking Horse Pass was chosen because of its proximity to the US border and its shorter distance to the Pacific Coast. This choice was so significant to the history of Canada that Kicking Horse Pass was designated as a National Historic Site in 1971.
Dinner Reservations: Train Dinner included Kamloops Hotel, at 6:30pm
Overnight – Kamloops Gold Leaf Service Accommodation (BLD)
Day 7. Thu. Kamloops / Vancouver. (Rocky Mountaineer Rail Journey continues)
Your journey continues towards the Pacific Ocean and the coastal city of Vancouver.
You will again see dramatic changes in scenery, from the desert-like environment of the Interior, through winding river canyons and pristine forests, to the Coast and Cascade Mountains and the lush green fields of the Fraser Valley.
Highlights include the steep slopes and rock sheds along the Thompson River and the rushing waters of Hell’s Gate in the Fraser Canyon.
Dinner Reservations: Boulevard Restaurant, at Sutton Place Hotel at 7:30pm
Overnight: Sutton Place Hotel (BL)
Day 8. Fri Vancouver / Victoria / Victoria Harbor / Vancouver Harbor One way.
Your travel will be onboard a comfortable tour coach and the 9am BC Ferries sailing for a spectacular 95 minute cruise through the marine wonderland of the Gulf Islands. Once docked on Vancouver Island (Swartz Bay), the tour continues on to the world-famous Butchart Gardens for two hours with their 55 acre display of magnificent foliage. After the Gardens, the tour heads for downtown Victoria through quaint Chinatown and the Inner Harbor.
You will have free time once in downtown Victoria to explore the Inner Harbor, the Empress Hotel, the Royal BC Museum and the BC Legislature all just a few blocks walk.
Departure from downtown Victoria is by float plane. Your flight is 6:00pm. You must be at the Harbor Float plane check in by 5:30pm for your return journey to Vancouver. The flight is about 30 minutes harbor to harbor.
You’ll arrive in Vancouver at approximately 6:30pm.
Dinner Reservations: The Keg Steakhouse at 7:00pm
Overnight: Sutton Place Hotel (B)
Day 9. Sat. Vancouver / Grouse Mountain & Capliano Suspension Bridge
Enjoy an early morning breakfast we suggest around 8:00am to 9:00am. Leave your bags at with the bell hop after breakfast. Across the street from the hotel is the bus stop. Bus departs at 10:00am.
Breathe in the fresh Pacific air and immerse yourself in the breathtaking canyons, rivers and mountainside at Capilano Suspension Bridge Park and Grouse Mountain. Look down over towering evergreens from the Cliffwalk or Treetops Adventure, and admire mountain vistas from the Skyride.
Head out from your downtown hotel to North Vancouver. Cross the Capilano Suspension Bridge, 230 feet (70 m) above the Capilano River.
Feel the rush of adrenaline at the Cliffwalk, a cantilevered walkway clinging to the granite cliff, or embark on the Treetops Adventure’s 7 suspension bridges through the evergreens—100 feet (30 m) above the forest floor.
Spectacular Grouse Mountain is the next stop. Here, dare to take the courageous trek up the 2,788-foot (849-m) mountain known as Mother Nature’s Stairmaster. Or ride the relaxing Skyride, a giant airborne gondola, offering a bird’s-eye view as you glide up the mountainside.
At the mountaintop, you can explore the wildlife refuge, a 5-acre (2-ha) habitat that is home to a pack of grey wolves, two grizzly bears, and two peregrine falcons that participate in flying demonstrations three times a day. While there, you can take in a short IMAX film at the Theatre in the Sky
Dinner Reservations: Globe Restaurant in Fairmont Vancouver Airport at 7:00pm
Overnight: Fairmont Vancouver Airport (B)
Day 10. Sun. Vancouver / Salt Lake City / Final Destination in USA.