National Parks by Rail

One way to see the USA is by the good old fashion train. Here’s some ideas from our friends at Amtrak Vacations to see America’s National Parks by rail. Let me know if any of these sound interesting. Or even if they inspire you to travel, but perhaps in a different way.

Grand National Parks of the Southwest

On the California Zephyr, discover five incredible national parks of Utah – Arches, Canyonlands, Zion, Bryce and Capitol Reef – on this seven-day rail journey from Chicago. Be treated to breathtaking sightseeing tours of each park and spectacular views of the unique geography of the area, including the dramatic arches, spires, pinnacles, balance rocks and fins you may have only seen in photos. Gorgeous year-round, this vacation promises incredible views, and plenty of sunshine and relaxation! More information here.

Grand canyon sunset landscape; all photos courtesy of Amtrak Vacations

Rails to Grand Canyon

Traveling onboard the Southwest Chief and the Grand Canyon Railway to one of the seven wonders of the natural world is certainly a bucket list experience like no other. Known as “the most spectacular gorge in the world,” the Grand Canyon is one of those places that stays with you long after you return home from vacation. The South Rim (open all year) is the most accessible and offers unparalleled views. This five-day adventure will introduce you to the picturesque scenery of the American Southwest like you’ve never experienced it before, even if you’ve previously been there by car, bus, or plane. Click here to learn more.

America’s National Parks

Enjoy some of the most gorgeous landscapes in the world on this train tour from Denver to Salt Lake City that includes four spectacular national parks: YellowstoneRocky MountainArches, and Canyonlands National Park. Begin in Denver, where there is no shortage of gorgeous Rocky Mountain views. Head to Grand Junction on Amtrak’s California Zephyr, which is considered one of the most beautiful train trips in North America. Enjoy the lovely views of the snow-capped Sierra Nevadas. Explore the geological wonders featured in two spectacular national parks: Canyonlands and Arches. Spend a day touring Yellowstone and exploring the quaint Old Faithful Village. To learn more, click here.

Rocky Mountains to Arches and Canyonlands

This five-day vacation features breathtaking scenery of some of America’s most unforgettable settings – the great Rocky Mountains and Arches and Canyonlands National Parks. First, explore the city of Denver and discover the wonders of Rocky Mountain National Park. Then board Amtrak’s California Zephyr for a scenic ride from Denver to Grand Junction, Colorado (your base for exploring the red-orange sandstone and desert blue skies of Arches and Canyonlands National Parks). It’s no surprise the U.S. Postal Service chose to depict Arches on one of its commemorative Park Service centennial stamps. The thousands of sandstone arches at Arches National Park are a must see, and Canyonlands National Park provides a wealth of scenery, from vast mesas to soaring rock columns, and even examples of Native American cave painting. Your tour also includes a stop at Dead Horse Point State Park to take in the breathtaking view over Canyonlands and the Colorado River. Check out the details here.

Glacier National Park Express

Glacier National Park is one of North America’s most popular national parks, and for good reason. The snow-capped peaks, plunging waterfalls, dense forests, and glassy azure-colored lakes have the ability to stop even the most discerning traveler in their tracks. This is a 10-day rail journey onboard Amtrak that you don’t want to miss! If you choose to visit Glacier National Park from Chicago, your train will traverse major portions of the Lewis and Clark trail and follow in the footsteps of early pioneers. You’ll also have the opportunity take in incredible views of untouched wilderness along the way. Get all the details here.

Grand National Parks of America

This epic, around-the-country rail exploration of 12 of America’s top national parks will shorten many a bucket list! See the best of the country’s greatest national parks – including the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Yosemite, and Glacier National Park – the way they were meant to be experienced – by iconic Amtrak train. Take your time discovering these treasured, awe-inspiring sites with accommodations, tours and activities inside each park. And let the train take you in relaxed comfort from destination to destination, with amazing views out your window all along the way. This is the one train journey you’ll be talking about for years to come! For more information, click here.

Scenic North America: Rockies, Canyons & Beyond

From the best big cities to the most awe-inspiring national parks, North America’s greatest treasures await on this all-encompassing, cross-continent journey by train. Begin in the vibrant Canadian city of Vancouver discovering the sights of the city, and from there, journey across Canada on VIA Rail, taking in the beautiful alpine towns of Jasper and Banff in the Canadian Rockies. Then continue east to diverse Toronto and experiencing the wonder of Niagara Falls. Then make your way across the great USA, from New York City to Los Angeles, with memorable stops at four iconic Southwest national parks, including the iconic Grand Canyon. Here’s the details.


There’s lots of other ways to see our National Parks including with Tauck or Collette tours. And for other great ideas, check out some of our other blogs like:

Susan Wolfson
My goal is to Make Your Next Vacation Your Best Vacation!®

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