Rocky Mountaineer rounds bed w red bushes
Train attendant speaking into a mike on the Rocky Mountain train
Guest taking photos while on the Rocky Mountain train
Two female guests riding in a train on the Rocky Mountaineer: Journey through the Clouds Explorer journey
Serving guests food on the Canadian Rockies Getaway Circle journey
World’s Top 25 Trains > Rocky Mountaineer

Rocky Mountaineer

North America
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The Rocky Mountaineer has been on our World’s Top 25 Trains list since it started. It was awarded the right to operate routes in the Canadian Rockies and purchase VIA Rail’s equipment in 1990 by the Canadian government. The owner, who ate beans for a while until his fledgling company took hold, started with two-day, all-daylight programs between Vancouver and Banff.

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In 1995, the company launched its luxury GoldLeaf Service with its custom-built glass bi-level dome coaches offering fine dining on the lower level. Today, most guests choose GoldLeaf service. The company has added Silverleaf — one-level dome cars.  This is an all-daylight train, allowing guests to take in all of the marvelous mountain scenery en-route.

Other routes are Vancouver-Kamloops-Jasper and Vancouver-Whistler-Quesnel-Jasper.

Society of IRT Added Value:

Get a free, one-way private sedan transfer (U.S. dollar value +$140) to/from Seattle, Vancouver, or Calgary airports when you book any Rocky Mountaineer trip on our website. Get free private sedan transfers both ways when you book a “Circle” journey tour, such as the Grand Rail Circle or Canadian Rockies Getaway Circle.)

Recommended Extension:

Sonora Resort, one of Canada’s premiere wilderness resorts, is the perfect complement to your Rocky Mountaineer journey. Add two pre-or post-nights at this all-inclusive lodge, accessible only by helicopter or float plane from Vancouver. Enjoy hiking and biking trails, experience a guided salmon-fishing outing, or go on a grizzly bear viewing tour. Call / e-mail us for details.

Read “Mountaineering in Luxury,” a review by IRT Marketing & Travel Associate Rachel Hardy.


In GoldLeaf Service, walk down a spiral staircase or take the elevator from the dome level to the dining room where the full galley kitchen prepares remarkable multi-course breakfasts and lunches for you.  The dining room can seat 36 in tables for four.

SilverLeaf passengers are served hot entree options at their seats.

Attendants serve alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks at your seat during the day. All drinks are included in the price of the journey.

IRT Insights

There are so many ways to take this train. For example, combine it with VIA Rail’s Canadian, from Toronto to Jasper, for a Trans-Canada Rail Adventure. Or maybe you’ve already done the Rocky Mountaineer’s regular itinerary. If so, try the three-day Rainforest to Gold Rush route—Vancouver-Whistler-Quesnel-Jasper.

The common theme is: all travel is done by day to maximize views of the spectacular scenery.

Check out this video to get a sense of what life is like on board Rocky Mountaineer.

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Talk to an expert about journeys on this train.