On this beautiful tour, we travel Colorado with train expert Mark Warther on this personally designed adventure featuring amazing trains, breathtaking scenery, lovely hotels and great food! Mark’s life-long love of trains and the majestic beauty of Colorado make this experience a trip like no other! Mark has been featured in “AAA Home & Away” magazine and PBS television for designing one-of-a-kind Colorado tours.
Check out this short video for a preview of this tour!
Today we shuttle to STL and fly to Denver, Colorado, the “Mile High City.” Tour Ambassador, Mark Warther, will greet us and show us to our local hotel, the Embassy Suites, to rest up from a day of travel and prepare for our welcome dinner reception. The Embassy has a pool, outdoor hot-tub, restaurant and lovely public areas.
This evening enjoy the Embassy Manager’s Reception in the main lobby under the miners drilling rig. If you do enjoy a little “libation” after a day of travel, drinks are on the house. Soft drinks and snacks are offered too.
Later, there will be a welcome dinner reception before retiring for the evening. (D)
Breakfast opens with made to order omelets and all the goodies!
This morning we depart Denver for the Georgetown Loop Railroad, which connected the thriving mining towns of Georgetown and Silver Plume with horseshoe curves, grades of up to 4%, and four bridges across Clear Creek, including the massive Devil’s Gate High Bridge.
We then depart for Palisade, checking into the award-winning Wine Country Inn. There will be plenty of time to rest and freshen-up for dinner. The Wine Country Inn has a beautiful courtyard complete with fire pit, pool and hot tub, a perfect place later to relax and enjoy the view of the Mesas! We will be here for two nights.
Tonight, we will experience a winemaker’s dinner at the inn, set amid acres of vineyards. (B, D)
Following breakfast, we depart for a full day of touring. Today we will visit one of the grand landscapes of the American West – Colorado National Monument. You will be in awe as we take in breathtaking views of deep, sheer-sided canyons and high rock towers. For those who wish, there will be time for some short walks. A special evening awaits us, an outdoor sunset dinner served on the canyon rim (weather permitting).
We depart Colorado’s wine country this morning and head to the high country. The San Juan Mountains are a rugged mountain range in southwestern Colorado, and to get there we will traverse the famous Million Dollar Highway, in which Charles Kuralt called, “the most beautiful in all the U.S.”
We arrive in Silverton for lunch on your own. Silverton is an old mining town in the heart of the San Juan Mountains and home to the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. This railroad has been voted one of the “Top Three Most Exciting Train Journeys in the World” by the Society of American Travel Writers. This amazing train winds through spectacular & breathtaking canyons in the
remote wilderness of the two-million-acre San Juan National Forest for an unforgettable adventure.
Dinner tonight is included at the famous Palace Restaurant beside the Durango train station.
We then check into to the Historic Strater Hotel for two nights. National Geographic calls this hotel “one of the top places to experience in the USA!” (B, D)
Today is for Durango. From local history and railroad museums to the ancient cliff dwellings of Mesa Verde National Park, Durango is truly where the old west survived, and the new thrives. Mesa Verde National Park was established in 1906 to preserve and interpret the archeological heritage of the Ancestral Pueblo people who made it their home for over 700 years, from 600
to 1300. In 1978, Mesa Verde National Park was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in recognition of its exceptional archaeological relevance. Protecting thousands of archaeological sites, including hundreds of cliff dwellings, Mesa Verde National Park is perched high in Southwest Colorado where the air is thin, the history is rich, and the views are spectacular. Today, the park protects nearly 5,000 known archeological sites, including 600 cliff dwellings.
Upon returning to the hotel you will have a choice of, walking down to the Round House & Museum in the Durango Railroad Yards, do some shopping in the downtown stores, or just rest up in this beautiful hotel.
Dinner is included at the Strater Hotel tonight. (B, D)
Today’s adventure includes lunch on the mountain as we chug along America’s highest and longest narrow-gauge railroad, the Cumbres & Toltec. The scenic journey unfolds as soon as the train, pulled by its powerful locomotive, leaves the Chama Station. In just moments, the gradual climb into the mountains begins and another day of memories is born. This is a six-hour excursion in which two of the hours we are off the train for lunch. We overnight at the Fairfield Inn and Suites, Alamosa. (B, L)
Today we visit the stunning Garden of the Gods, stopping on the way at The Trading Post, located on the Southwest edge of the world-famous Garden of the Gods. The gift shop is the largest in Colorado and features an impressive art gallery. You are sure to find the perfect gift for anyone with over 90,000 different items to choose from.
We then will visit the stunning Garden of the Gods, a 1,300-acre park where flora and fauna reflect the rich diversity of the terrain, and red sandstone formations tell a unique geological story.
Later this afternoon we will check into the Cliff House, a Four-Diamond Historic Inn, at the base of Pikes Peak. Dinner is included at the Inn tonight; then you may want to go down to the fire pit at the outside grill or enjoy the beautiful stone veranda that graces the front lobby. (B, D)
Today is our last great rail experience as we board the Pikes Peak Cog Railroad. A trip up “America’s Mountain” is certainly a bucket list experience and you will discover what inspired Kathryn Lee Bates to write “America the Beautiful.”
This evening you may enjoy a quiet dinner on your own. The Cliff House has lovely dining choices, or you may want to cross the street to the town of Manitou. (B, L)
General tour information:
Comfortable clothing for the entire tour – Lower elevations such as Denver and Palisade should be in the 80’s. Higher elevations such as Silverton could be in the 50’s, but is usually in the 60’s to low 70’s. Layering is the key, and keeping a jacket on the bus in case of a mountain shower. Suggestions: jeans, slacks, shorts, capris. The Cliff House is a beautiful Five Star Country Inn, in which you may choose to wear slacks or a dress for the farewell dinner, with that said even capri’s or dress shorts would be fine here.
All hotels are at an elevation of 6,900 feet or lower. Some people feel light-headed at 8,000 feet or higher. Water is the best cure for this. There will be available water on the bus. Sun Hat and Sunglasses! (Great for “cinder” protection too) For those that like to swim, some hotels have outdoor hot-tubs and pools.
Today we transfer to Denver for our flight home, with our local motorcoach awaiting to take us home to Southern Illinois. (B)
- Embassy Suites, Denver (1 Night)
- Wine Country Inn, Palisade, (2 Nights)
- Strater Hotel, Durango (2 Nights)
- Holiday Inn Express, Almarosa (1 Night)
- Cliff House at Pikes Peak (2 Nights)
- Eight nights’ deluxe accommodations and luggage handling
- Georgetown Loop Railroad
- Grand Junction
- Colorado National Monument
- San Juan Mountains
- Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad
- Mesa Verde National Park
- Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad
- Garden of the Gods
- Pikes Peak Cog Railroad
- Seven Falls of Colorado Springs @ Pike’s Peak
- Dinner on canyon rim
- daily complimentary water on coach
- Photobook of Tour
- 16 meals; (8 breakfasts, 2 lunches, and 6 dinners)
- Fully Escorted by Jane’s Journeys LLC
- Colorado escorted by Mark Warther, train expert
- Deluxe motorcoach transportation/driver’s gratuity
- Local guide gratuities
Price per person:
Double occupancy: $3,395.00
Triple occupancy: $3,307.00
Single occupancy: $4,218.00
Deposit of $400 with reservation. Final payment is due by May 1, 2021. Receive a full refund for cancellation up to 60 days prior to tour date.
Cancellation insurance for medical reasons up to departure date can be purchased for $233 per person double and triple and $311 per person for single occupancy to be paid with deposit.