With fluctuating travel restrictions and safety concerns, many travelers have shifted their gaze from the sky to the rails. Domestic train travel not only allows passengers to skip the hectic lines at the airport and dreaded middle seat on flights, it also presents an opportunity to see some of America’s most stunning landscapes en route to the destination.
Trains also provide the ticket to the meaningful slow travel movement. From national parks to coastal communities, Amtrak’s travel packages offer an expansive way to experience more than 500 destinations—both bucket list and lesser-known ones—on a network of more than 21,400 miles of rail. So, all aboard: here are some of Amtrak’s best train travel packages to consider now.
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With Amtrak’s USA Rail Pass, passengers can enjoy a multi-segmented journey across America, with routes that include the California Zephyr line, which travels daily between Chicago and San Francisco (Emeryville) and provides access to Memphis, Santa Fe, and Montana’s East Glacier Park. The pass allows up to 10 segments in a 30-day period beginning with the passenger’s first trip and is valid for use within 120 days of purchase.
Get closer to one of America’s most popular geological wonders, the Grand Canyon. Amtrak’s getaway to the national park covers three destinations—Chicago; Williams, Arizona; and Grand Canyon National Park—in six days. This vacation includes accommodations for three nights, as well as two meals (a breakfast and dinner) and a motorcoach rim tour of the Grand Canyon.
Price: From $1,399 per person
This route travels daily between Seattle and Los Angeles and passes through the lush forests and sparkling coastline of Santa Barbara, the San Francisco Bay Area, and Sacramento. Stops include Portland, where you can enjoy both the city’s food truck scene as well as natural wonders like Multnomah Falls, about a half hour from the station. Also visit Juan Bautista De Anza National Historic Trail by getting off at the Salinas stop and taking a 35-minute drive by private car.
Price: Fares are dynamic; tickets for the full route were as low as $63 in September and October
This package is for those looking for a longer ride that reveals some of the United States’ most scenic gems, including two of the most famous parks: Yellowstone National Park and Yosemite National Park. The 11-day journey starts in Chicago with a hop-on, hop-off tour, then heads to Salt Lake City for a narrated sightseeing tour and dinner at The Roof Restaurant, and also includes tours in both parks. Eight nights of hotel accommodations and two nights aboard the train are included, as well two dinners.
Price: From $2,799 per person
Amtrak offers a number of rail packages for travelers interested in exploring the grandeur of Glacier National Park. On the four-day vacation package, you’ll check into the historic Glacier Park Lodge and enjoy a boat cruise in Two Medicine Valley to take in its majestic peaks and cascading waterfalls.
Price: From $1,179 per person
The Sunset Limited line travels three times a week between New Orleans and Los Angeles (check for current availability as the route currently starts in San Antonio while New Orleans’ station is closed because of Hurricane Ida damage). The two-day long trip is Amtrak’s southernmost route. You’ll take in scenes of the Gulf Coast’s bayous, Mexican borderline, southwest deserts, and California’s coastline. Get off in Alpine, Texas, to visit Big Bend National Park, an hour’s drive away. In Tucson, Arizona, a 25-minute drive will lead you to Saguaro National Park. Accommodations and meal options are all available onboard.
Price: Fares are dynamic; tickets for the full route were as low as $89 for the two-day trip in September
This line travels daily between Washington, D.C., and Chicago and provides access to Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historic Parks as well as Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. Start in D.C.’s Union Station where you can visit places like the National Museum of African American History and Culture. The 18-hour journey also includes scenic views of Ohio and Indiana, before its final stop in Chicago’s city center.
Price: Fares are dynamic; tickets for the full route were as low as $53 for September.