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Trip Overview

Throughout this eight-day, seven-night roundtrip rail journey from Chicago to Grand Junction, Capitol Reef, Bryce Canyon, Zion, Lake Powell, and the Grand Canyon, there is plenty to see, do, and explore. America’s National Parks of the Southwest welcome visitors of all ages! Gorgeous year-round, these surreal, untamed landscapes are what attract millions of visitors from around the world each year—and getting there by train makes all the difference. Ride two iconic trains, the California Zephyr and Southwest Chief, and immerse in the memorable onboard experiences. Relax in Grand Junction, marvel at the Waterpocket Fold in Capitol Reef and viewpoints of Bryce Canyon, and be amazed by the vermillion cliffs of Zion and breath-taking red rock canyon vistas of Lake Powell. The majestic beauty of the Southwest makes for an essential American rail journey that can’t be missed!

Highlights

  • Sightseeing tour Capitol Reef and Bryce Canyon National Parks
  • Sightseeing tour of Zion National Park and Lake Powell
  • Sightseeing tour of the Grand Canyon

PACKAGE ALSO INCLUDES:

  • Roundtrip Amtrak® in Coach accommodations from Chicago to Grand Junction; Williams to Chicago on California Zephyr® and Southwest Chief®
  • Transfer from Grand Junction to Springdale; Springdale to Williams, AZ
  • Roundtrip in Coach accommodation on the Grand Canyon Railway
  • 5 nights' hotel accommodations
  • 2 meals included (1 breakfast, 1 dinner)
Trip Map

Disclaimer:

Prices are subject to availability, based on two people sharing a standard twin or double room. Prices are subject to change. Single occupancy supplements will apply for solo travellers. Hotel and room facilities vary and may be subject to additional fees. Some hotels require payment of local city taxes on arrival. Amtrak travel is for Coach accommodations unless otherwise noted. Upgrades to Roomette or Bedroom accommodations on board Amtrak are available. Please call for pricing. We accept all major credit and debit cards. Amtrak Vacations is a member of ABTA (Y6401) and all holidays including flights are ATOL protected, number 7579.

DAY 1              YOUR JOURNEY BEGINS IN CHICAGO
Depart Chicago’s Union Station onboard the Southwest Chief today for an overnight rail journey to Grand Junction, Colorado. Enjoy comfortable accommodations and all the incredible views along the way! (Overnight onboard Amtrak)

DAY 2              GRAND JUNCTION
Today, arrive in Grand Junction and check into your hotel for an overnight stay. Grand Junction offers something for everyone to enjoy, from farm-to-table cuisine, hiking, fishing, some of the best golf in the state, shopping, arts and culture, and so much more. Stroll along the Riverfront Trail or browse the boutiques, bookstores, and galleries of Downtown. Why not visit A Robin’s Nest, the largest antique store between Denver and Las Vegas, and do some treasure hunting? A must-see is the Colorado National Monument, famous for its red rock canyons and peaceful solitude. Regardless of the time of year, this place is absolutely stunning! (Overnight in Grand Junction)

DAY 3              CAPITOL REEF AND BRYCE CANYON NATIONAL PARKS
Get ready for an exciting day that includes your tour through these amazing sites! Travel along Scenic Byway UT-12 en route to your first stop: Capitol Reef. Probably the least known and least crowded park in Utah (though equally as mesmerizing), this national park features cliffs, hidden arches, massive sandstone domes that resemble capitol buildings, and deep canyons. The scenery speaks for itself with plenty of opportunities to stop and take photos or simply admire the views. See the park’s most famous attraction, the Waterpocket Fold. When you arrive in Bryce Canyon, the highlights will most certainly be the distinctive hoodoos (red rock pillars), bristlecone pine trees (the oldest trees in the world), and views from Sunrise, Sunset, and Inspiration Point. (Overnight in Springdale)

DAY 4              ZION NATIONAL PARK AND LAKE POWELL
Today, you’ll continue tour from Springdale to Zion National park and Lake Powell en route to Williams, Arizona. Experience one of Utah’s most breathtaking landscapes in Zion. Featuring 200 miles of picturesque trails, stunning vistas, vermillion cliffs, canyons, jagged skyline, and flora and fauna, this national park is a must-visit! Highlights of the tour are Court of the Patriarchs, Emerald Pools, Weeping Rock, Temple of Sinawava and the Grotto. There is plenty to see and do without straining yourself, as there are fully-paved paths throughout Zion and many wheelchair accessible points of interest. Simply wander to a comfortable location and take in all the wonderful scenery. And you can’t forget about the wildlife! Deer, wild turkeys, and bighorn sheep call this place home. After touring Zion, you’ll depart for the Grand Canyon’s South Rim, at which time you’ll travel near the picturesque shores of Lake Powell. Make sure to have your camera ready when you drive over the Glen Canyon Dam. At the end of your tour, you’ll arrive in the quaint mountain town of Williams, Arizona, famous for being the “Gateway to the Grand Canyon.” (Overnight in Williams)

DAY 5              GRAND CANYON
After having breakfast at the Grand Depot Café, board the Grand Canyon Railway from Williams to the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. During your Grand Canyon Freedom Rim Tour, you’ll discover why the South Rim has been hosting visitors since the 1850’s. It’s awe-inspiring. Except, back then, the trip here meant surviving a bone-jarring stagecoach ride that took anywhere from one to two days! With close to two dozen expansive, breath-taking viewpoints, the South Rim will provoke childlike wonder and a sense that the world is so much more magnificent and grand than you imagined. (Overnight in Grand Canyon’s South Rim) B

DAY 6              WILLIAMS, AZ
Before boarding the Grand Canyon Railway from the South Rim back to Williams, take some time to see any sights and capture memories that you didn’t get a chance to yesterday. In Williams, explore on your own before enjoying your included dinner at the Grand Depot Café. Perhaps head to Wild West Junction (a short walk from downtown) to see Wild West-era buildings or grab a night cap at the Long Horn Saloon and reflect on your wonderful rail journey through the American Southwest. (Overnight in Williams) D

DAY 7              OVERNIGHT ONBOARD AMTRAK
Today, you’ll board the Southwest Chief for your long-haul journey back to Chicago. Once onboard, take in all the captivating views as you travel back to Chicago. (Overnight onboard Amtrak)

DAY 8              YOUR JOUNREY ENDS IN CHICAGO

LEGEND FOR MEALS: B - Breakfast, BR - Brunch, L - Lunch, D –Dinner

El Tovar

El Tovar Hotel, the premier lodging facility at the Grand Canyon, opened its doors in 1905 and was most recently renovated in 2005. In the past, the Hotel has hosted such luminaries as Theodore Roosevelt, Albert Einstein, Western author Zane Grey, and many others. Today, El Tovar retains its elegant charm. Located on the Canyon rim, it features a fine dining room (open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner), lounge and curio shop with newsstand.

Grand Canyon Railway

Grand Canyon Railway Hotel is nestled amongst the Ponderosa pine forest in Williams, Arizona - "Gateway to the Grand Canyon." Owned and operated by Grand Canyon Railway, this hotel is one of the finest in the Grand Canyon -Flagstaff - Williams area.

Kachina Lodge

Located directly on the rim of the Grand Canyon, the Kachina Lodge is a great hotel for all guests visiting the South Rim.

Maswik Lodge

Maswik Lodge is a modern facility spread over several acres of ponderosa pine forest, located just 1/4 mile from the Canyon's edge. Maswik Lodge features a cafeteria that is open from 6:00 am to 10:00 pm. Here you will also find a sports bar with a wide screen TV, a curio shop stocked with handicrafts and gifts, and a transportation/activities desk.

Thunderbird Lodge

Conveniently located between El Tovar and Bright Angel Lodge, Thunderbird is a contemporary lodge located at the South Rim.

Doubletree by Hilton Grand Junction

Step into a resort-style paradise at the DoubleTree by Hilton Grand Junction hotel. Your premier upscale Grand Junction hotel is newly renovated and overlooks the lush valley and famous bluffs of the Grand Mesa Plateau. Located just minutes from Grand Junction Regional Airport (GJT) with easy access to I-70, our Grand Junction hotel is also close to local businesses like West Star Aviation, St. Mary's Hospital, Community Hospital as well as Colorado Mesa University, local vineyards, wineries and historic Downtown Grand Junction

Grand Vista Hotel

The Grand Vista Hotel is conveniently located near the airport in Grand Junction and is close to Colorado Mesa University and the Two Rivers Convention Center.

Select Your Departure Date

For more information or to make a reservation,
call our rail vacation experts at: 1-800-AMTRAK-2

Disclaimer:

Prices are subject to availability, based on two people sharing a standard twin or double room. Prices are subject to change. Single occupancy supplements will apply for solo travellers. Hotel and room facilities vary and may be subject to additional fees. Some hotels require payment of local city taxes on arrival. Amtrak travel is for Coach accommodations unless otherwise noted. Upgrades to Roomette or Bedroom accommodations on board Amtrak are available. Please call for pricing. We accept all major credit and debit cards. Amtrak Vacations is a member of ABTA (Y6401) and all holidays including flights are ATOL protected, number 7579.

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