VIA Rail’s ‘Canadian’ train from Toronto to Vancouver is supposed to be one of the world’s greatest train journeys. It also costs over $2,000 and takes 5 days so was just a bit out of budget!
Instead of doing the whole thing (the first part through the Prairies is meant to be pretty boring anyway) we flew to Edmonton and then took the train to Jasper.
We got up incredibly early, arrived at the station and found out our train was going to be late – not a good start. When the train did finally arrive it was another hour before we all got on. Apparently delays on this line are pretty common as the huge freight trains have priority; someone at our hotel was once delayed by 10 hours!
The journey definitely made up for it though, the seats reclined right back, had lots of leg room, the staff we’re friendly and helpful and we we’re treated to some spectacular scenery as we passed through the Rockies. Definitely better than travelling by air. It was also interesting to meet Canadians who had never travelled by train before!
We caught our first glimpse of some elk and mountain sheep but still no bears or moose!