Simon Gemmell


Simon Gemmell

0786 488 1126

Treat yourself to a holiday of a lifetime 

Western Canada including the famous Canadian Rockies and Alaska

This part of Canada plus Alaska should be on every traveller’s wish list and is one of my favourite holiday destinations. Western Canada offers a diverse landscape: towering Rocky Mountains, ranch lands of the Cariboo Region and the stunning Pacific Coast.

Photo: Bow River at Banff (R. Gemmell)

Cruising in Alaska (S. Gemmell)

Tailor-made Holidays – Tours – Spectacular Train Journeys – Wildlife – Cruising in Alaska

There are many different types of holidays available and I can help you choose the best one to suit your requirements.

Tailor-made Holidays are for those who do not want to be over organised with or without a hire car. Self-Drive Holidays are for those happy to drive. A well planned itinerary with easily achieved daily drives, details of what to see and what excursions are available can make for a stress free holiday. Wildlife Breaks - Canada is home to a variety of wildlife including the Polar Bears at Churchill and the Grizzly in locations in Western Canada. There are various excursions and packages that allow you to view them in their natural surrounds.
Spectacular Rail Journeys - the country was built around the railroad, and famous rail journeys like the Rocky Mountaineer and The Canadian can easily be incorporated into many types of itinerary. Escorted Tours are available for different durations and areas and are great for those who want to be looked after throughout and who enjoy the company of others. Cruising in Alaska - many of these holidays and tours can be combined with or include a cruise to Alaska. I can help you decide which cruise company is best for you and your budget.

Lake Louise (R.Gemmell)

Examples of Tailor-made Holidays

This is just a small selection of what is available – please contact me for further details. ​​​​​​​

8 Day Independent Rockies Tour including Rocky Mountaineer Train from £1848 per person
Calgary – Banff – Lake Louise – Jasper - Rocky Mountaineer – Vancouver

14 Days Best of the West Self Drive Tour from £1560 per person
Calgary – Banff – Icefields Parkway – Jasper – Yellowhead Highway - Wells Gray Park – Whistler – Sea-to-Sky Highway and ferry to Vancouver island – Vancouver

17 Days Independent Canadian Rockies and Alaska Cruise from £3044 per person
Calgary – Banff – Lake Louise - Icefields Parkway – Jasper – Rocky Mountaineer Train – Vancouver – Alaska Cruise
Based on off peak 2017 dates (2018 prices available)

Flight prices have to be added ex UK
We thank First Class Holidays for their assistance 
All prices are subject to confirmation at time of booking

Mountains behind Banff (R.Gemmell)

Canadian Rockies Resorts

There are good choices of accommodation available, ranging from small hotels and Inns to the famous larger Fairmont properties. The Icefields Excursion together with a stay in Calgary, Banff and Jasper can be successfully combined with many of the famous Rocky Mountaineer journeys.

The Icefields Parkway is a scenic road specifically built with tourism in mind, crossing the rugged landscape of the Canadian Rockies. Include a stop at the Athabasca Glacier and take a trip on the Ice Explorer – a bus with extra-large wheels that climbs to the top of the Icefield. The Glacier Skywalk is Icefield Parkway’s newest attraction consisting of a glass floored observation platform extending 30 metres out over the Sunwapta Valley offering spectacular views.
Calgary is best known for the annual Calgary Stampede. Many summertime festivals are held here, be it Blues, Folk or Film. Not far away is the Buffalo Jump World Heritage Site and other museums. Calgary is the gateway airport for the Rockies. Banff, situated beside the Bow River, is set in a most stunning position surrounded by Mountains. While there, include a Gondola Ride to the top of Sulphur Mountain to enjoy the wonderful views.

Jasper is a much less commercial town than Banff, with a sleepy ‘Alpine’ resort feel to it. You can visit the Jasper Tramway (Cable Car) for more wonderful views or take a boat ride on beautiful Maligne Lake (30 minutes away). Both Banff and Jasper offer country pursuits in a big way, like climbing, canoeing, hiking, cycling (cycles are available for hire).

Rocky Mountaineer Train at Exshaw, Bow River Valley (Rocky Mountaineer Trains)

The Famous Rocky Mountaineer Train ​​​​​​​

Travelling aboard the privately owned Rocky Mountaineer is an unforgettable experience

The train journey takes place during daylight hours to ensure you enjoy every minute of the breath-taking scenery, retracing train routes constructed over 100 years ago through the Canadian Rockies and Canada West. Ferocious rivers, majestic mountain ranges, glacier-fed lakes, all from the comfort of a roomy Dome carriage or Observation Dome carriage. Luggage is delivered to your overnight hotel en route. Complimentary breakfast and lunch is included on board the train as well as beverages (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) and complimentary snacks.

GoldLeaf is the most luxurious option. Gold Leaf clients have a separate dining area with superior meals and their own observation deck accommodation.

SilverLeaf - You travel in a single level dome coach with panoramic views through large windows. Regional inspired Gourmet meals plated to your preference are served at your seat.

Routes – there are several 2 and 3 day journeys on offer taking in Calgary, Banff, Jasper, Whistler and Vancouver. A new stop at Lake Louise and new departures from Seattle have recently been introduced and return day trips Vancouver to Whistler are also on offer.
​​​​​​​Ask for details.
CLICK TO WATCH VIDEO: Rocky Mountaineer Train Experience 

Fairmont Empress Hotel, Victoria, Vancouver Island (Fairmont Hotels)

Vancouver and Vancouver Island

Take a Seaplane to Vancouver Island ...or high speed Whale Watching from Victoria…try a Grizzly Bear Expedition

Central Vancouver - Vancouver is an attractive city; explore the downtown area, the shopping areas around Robson Street, and Gastown (original old town). A pleasant walk along the water front brings you to Stanley Park, a huge area of natural beauty and excellent wildlife. North Vancouver - For a great day out visit Capilano Suspension Bridge taking the Seabus from Canada Place and a cab onwards or take a day tour. For more adventure try their Treetops Adventure and the Cliff Walk. Not far away is Grouse Mountain - take the gondola to the top and enjoy wonderful views and wildlife.
Victoria – Vancouver Island - Take a Seaplane, an amazing experience in itself, from Coal Harbour to Victoria on Vancouver Island. Outside Victoria, visit the world famous Butchart Gardens. Try Whale Watching on the ‘speedy’ Orca Spirit sailing from Victoria or enjoy afternoon tea at the famous Fairmont Empress Hotel.
Tofino – Campbell River - Grizzly Bear Expeditions - If you decide to stay on Vancouver Island you can escape to more remote destinations on the island including Tofino on the other side and Campbell River further North – you can then take time to relax - swimming, fishing, whale watching and Black Bear Expeditions are at hand. Various types of accommodation are available.

White Pass & Yukon Railroad in Alaska (Jed Thompson for WPYR)

Alaska The Great Land

The largest state of the USA, Alaska is a magnificent destination, with more than half the world's glaciers to be found there. Since communications are difficult, an Alaskan cruise is an ideal way of getting a taste of this extraordinary region.

Alaskan Port Tours and Tours of the interior of Alaska
Most cruises take the Inside Passage Route from Vancouver or Seattle and they are normally one week's duration. Some itineraries may be longer and take you further up the coast to Seward, near Anchorage, where you can fly in and out. There are excellent rail and tour options which can take passengers into the interior of the country, towards Fairbanks. I can assist with what things to do and see at all Alaskan ports, just contact me. If you think you would prefer a stand-alone tour rather than a cruise that can easily be arranged as well.
Gold Rush in the Yukon
While visiting Alaska you will be fascinated by the stories of the Gold Rush in the mountains of the Yukon - the historic White Pass and Yukon narrow gauge railway was built to transport prospectors from the port of Skagway to the region. Now a popular tourist attraction with cruise ship companies, passengers can view glacier-covered peaks, waterfalls and alpine lakes. There are various other fascinating tours available while cruising in Alaska: sea plane rides, helicopter ride, sledging, and many more activities. All the scenery is wonderful.

If cruising which Line should I consider travelling with and which Itinerary should I choose?
Every cruise line describes itself as luxurious which can be misleading. I can help you quickly with your choice, including those in the ultra luxury bracket and specialised sectors. I can also help you decide on the itinerary to choose as you may wish to combine the cruise with several other elements in a Canada and Alaska holiday.

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