In this Issue:
FEATURED TRIP: Elegant Canadian Rockies
CRUISE OF THE MONTH: Midwestern Majesty
JOURNEY OF THE MONTH: Best of the West
BEHIND THE SCENES: Azamazing Dining
THE WAY IT WAS: Tea at Sea
PHOTO OF THE MONTH: Jack Frost Nipping at Your Nose
DID YOU KNOW? Moving a Riverboat
HISTORIC SNAPSHOT: Park Origins
A TASTE FOR TRAVEL: Spicy Shrimp Salad in Lettuce Cups
TRAVEL TIPS: Top 10 Things to Do in Banff
NATIONAL PARK TRIVIA: Time Is Relative in Arches National Park
IN YOUR OWN WORDS: What our guests are saying about us
EXCLUSIVE LIMITED OFFER
FREE NIGHT IN SEATTLE! Receive a pre-trip hotel night in Seattle before embarking on our 8-day Elegant Canadian Rockies train tours on August 18 and September 15, 2016. Note that this is an EXCLUSIVE offer that is made available ONLY to subscribers of this e-newsletter and must be redeemed by calling Uncommon Journeys at 1-800-323-5893.
This offer expires August 15, 2016.
Elegant Canadian Rockies
While there are many tour programs to the Canadian Rockies, only Uncommon Journeys offers our comprehensive our 8-day Elegant Canadian Rockies train tours from Seattle to Calgary departing August 18 and September 15. We offer a magical and nostalgic beginning, travel aboard a 1940s style private Vista-Dome streamliner train, our own Great Western Limited, to stunning Glacier National Park, Montana. Our guests enjoy a manner and style of train travel that has all but vanished with a choice of Pullman sleeping car accommodations, featuring private facilities, comfortable beds, fluffy pillows and turn-down service. Onboard, there is an inviting dining & lounge area for relaxing in and meals are freshly prepared onboard by a skilled chef and served on tables graced with fresh roses and white linen. All meals, wines & spirits while aboard are included and there is simply no finer way to travel from Seattle to glorious Glacier National Park.
At Glacier National Park we have included the storied Going to the Sun Highway on the famed red open-air 'jammer buses' and this is only an entrée to our next visual treat, breathtakingly beautiful and seldom-visited Waterton National Park in Alberta, a charming village many of our guests consider the highlight of their Canadian Rockies holiday. We then travel to Banff, stopping en route at the acclaimed Head Smashed-In Buffalo Jump Museum, a UNESCO World Heritage site, for a four-night stay in the heart of Banff Township. Few tours offer four nights in Banff and this allows time not only to see the nearby area and we have included visits to lovely Moraine Lake, Lake Louise, Yoho National Park and more, but also large amounts of free time for you to enjoy this remarkable mountain setting at your own pace. All sightseeing in the Canadian Rockies is included. Many meals are also included with such treats as breakfast at Chateau Lake Louise one day and dinner one evening at Le Beaujolais overlooking the Bow River, one of the highest rated restaurants in Canada.
DAY 1 - ALL ABOARD
We board the Great Western Limited in Seattle this afternoon and are soon running alongside Puget Sound during our welcome reception, a nice beginning to a refined holiday. Later today, we cross the Cascades while enjoying an elegant welcome dinner. Tonight is spent aboard as we roll east over the Burlington Northern Railroad.
DAY 2 – GLACIER NATIONAL PARK, MONTANA
Today is a special treat, we disembark the train in Glacier National Park this morning for a boat cruise on stunning Lake McDonald, a glorious way to take in the high peaks of Glacier Park. Later today we have all day to enjoy this magnificent lakeside setting and national historic landmark nestled along the southeast shore of Lake McDonald before spending the night at the lovely Lodge at Whitefish Lake.
DAY 3 – WATERTON, ALBERTA
A day of spectacular sightseeing in Glacier National Park including the fabled 'Going to the Sun' Highway over the Continental Divide aboard an iconic red open-air 'jammer bus', a stunning journey. Later today, we enter Canada and overnight at the historic Prince of Wales Lodge at Waterton Lake, one of the most photographed sites in North America. The August & September departures will stay at the Waterton Lakes Lodge Resort.
DAY 4 - BANFF, ALBERTA
We depart Waterton this morning with a stop in fascinating Head Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, an UNESCO World Heritage Site, while en route to Banff. Later today, we arrive in Banff and begin our four-night stay in the heart of Banff village at the Mount Royal Hotel.
DAY 5 - BANFF, ALBERTA
A full day to enjoy Banff beginning with a gondola ride up Sulphur Mountain followed by a visit to the Banff Hot Springs which the town is famous for. Later tonight, our welcome dinner with the rest of the evening at leisure at the Mount Royal Hotel in Banff.
DAY 6 - BANFF, ALBERTA
A day of stunning beauty as we travel to Lake Louise with time to visit fabled Chateau Lake Louise, one of the most photographed lakes in the world. We also visit Moraine Lake in the Valley of the Ten Peaks and have the afternoon and evening at leisure. A visit to the Cave & Basin museum is highly recommended!
DAY 7 - BANFF, ALBERTA
A final full day to enjoy Banff and a fine time to visit the nearby Whyte Museum for a view of historic Banff and its beginnings, the superb Banff Center for the Arts or river rafting on the Bow River. Tonight is our Farewell dinner with time for an evening stroll through Cascade Gardens, a delightful farewell to this magical village.
DAY 8 – WELCOME HOME!
A morning transfer brings us to Calgary airport by 11am where easy connections can be made for all US points.
Beginning at just $2,995 per person and offered on August 18 and September 15, our 10-day Elegant Canadian Rockies train tours are guest favorites so call us at 1-800-323-5893 for more details.
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Join our partners, French America Line, for a magnificent 8-day fall foliage voyage from St. Paul to St. Louis on 0ctober 8, 2016. As fall arrives, the majestic reds, oranges and yellows of the leaves begin to ripple across the rolling hills of the Midwest. You'll want to experience autumn among the trees in magical Great River Bluffs State Park in Winona. Be sure to ask the locals for the perfect wine and cheese pairing in Prairie du Chien. Visit Mark Twain's modest boyhood home in Hannibal, admire the striking public art along the river in Dubuque and take in the panoramic view from the top of the Davenport Skybridge. With multiple locks, lakes and some of the prettiest scenery in North America, these fall voyages are immensely popular.
DAY 1 – ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA (DELUXE HOTEL)
Arrive in St. Paul and check in to your deluxe hotel, which is adjacent to the city’s attractions. Admire the Cathedral of St. Paul, a beaux-arts wonder that replicates St. Peter's in Rome, and soak in the arts at the city's world-class museums, including the Walker Art Center. Detour to Minnehaha Falls, best known for Longfellow's Song of Hiawatha.
DAY 2 – ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA (EMBARKATION)
Your fare includes breakfast this morning at your hotel as well as a transfer to the Louisiane and all porterage. Settle into your stateroom or suite, head to The Veranda for a light snack and then bid St. Paul farewell as the Louisiane departs and you immerse yourself in the joys of life on the river. Bon voyage!
DAY 3 – WINONA, MINNESOTA
Be awed by lofty Sugar Loaf, one of the most recognizable topographical landmarks along Minnesota's bluff country. Find further inspiration at the Minnesota Marine Art Museum, which features one of the two original versions of Leutze's Washington Crossing the Delaware.
DAY 4 – PRAIRIE DU CHIEN, WISCONSIN
Contemplate 10,000 years of Native American history at this once bustling fur-trading center, now host to five National Historic Landmarks, including the Victorian stunner Villa Louis. Locals insist you stop by Valley Fish and Cheese for their mouthwatering victuals.
DAY 5 - DUBUQUE, IOWA
Build up your knowledge of early river commerce much as the lumber barons built countless landmarks at this confluence of three states. Ride the Fenelon Place Elevator Co., a historic funicular that affords an unmatched view from atop the bluffs.
DAY 6 – DAVENPORT, IOWA
Appreciate the exploding cultural scene at this city founded on the site of the 1832 Black Hawk purchase, host to the yearly festival held in honor of local Bix Biederbecke, the "giant of cornetists", and the excellent Figge Art Museum.
DAY 7 - HANNIBAL, MISSOURI
Pay tribute to Samuel Clemens, better known as Mark Twain, at his Boyhood Home and Museum in this welcoming town. Reenact Tom and Huck's exploits if you're feeling mischievous, as Hannibal provided the setting for their quintessentially American adventures.
DAY 8 – ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI (DISEMBARKATION)
Bid adieu to the Louisiane and explore St. Louis. Wonder at the St. Louis Arch, an unequaled architectural statement that defines this storied town, then continue your architectural tour at the imposing Cathedral of St. Louis. Indulge a less lofty American pastime at the Anheuser-Busch brewery, an American classic.
Beginning at just $3,599 per person, this 8-day trip departing St. Paul on October 8 is a riverboat lover’s dream. Call us at 1-800-323-5893 for more details.
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Best of the West
This 15-day Best of the West train tour roundtrip from Chicago departing August 6 and September 3 is the ultimate holiday to Grand Teton, Yellowstone and Glacier National Parks with excellent hotels, exceptional dining, comprehensive sightseeing and our own private train operating via the Colorado Rockies in daylight!
Without question, Arches & Canyonlands, Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks are truly wonders of the west and offer some of the most stunning scenery in North America. Arches & Canyonlands with their canyons, mesas and buttes are stunning and must be seen to be believed. Grand Teton, with its jagged mountains, pristine lakes and rich wildlife is a jewel and Yellowstone, with its geysers, hot springs and waterfalls is a visual feast. Not as well known, but equally splendid is Glacier National Park, Montana with its storied 'Going to the Sun' road over the Continental Divide and happily, we have combined all five of these great National Parks into one glorious holiday with excellent hotels, epic scenery and intelligent planning. Nicer still, all sightseeing is included, from a float trip on the Snake River during our visit to Grand Teton, to complete touring in Yellowstone including Old Faithful and during our stay in Glacier National Park on the fabled red open-air 'jammer' buses. For maximum comfort, all but two of our hotel stays are two nights long, something almost no other program offers.
Great destinations deserve a great train and we have re-created a classic 1950s era streamliner train to convey our guests from Chicago to and from the National Parks in great style and comfort. With a choice of comfortable Pullman sleeping car accommodations, an inviting lounge area with large windows for taking in all of the wonders of the west, our Great Western Limited provides a level of accommodation, dining & service not found on any Amtrak train. With our own attentive staff, classic railroad dining (all meals, wines & spirits are included while aboard!), plenty of room and a delightful ambiance with such amenities as fresh flowers, afternoon tea, nightly turn-down service and much more, there is simply no finer way to see the West. Best of all, our journey to Utah takes us over the storied Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad “Main Line through the Rockies” with a daylight passage through stunning Glenwood Canyon and the Front Range of the Rockies; there can be no nicer entrée to the magnificent vistas that await you on this entire holiday.
DAY 1 – DEPART CHICAGO, ILLINOIS
DAY 2 - MOAB, UTAH
DAY 3 - MOAB, UTAH
DAY 4 - MOAB, UTAH
DAY 5 - SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH
DAY 6 - SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH
DAY - JACKSON HOLE, WYOMING
DAY 8 – JACKSON HOLE, WYOMING
DAY 9 – YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, WYOMING
DAY 10 – YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, WYOMING
DAY 11 - FAIRMONT HOT SPRINGS, MONTANA
DAY 12 – GLACIER NATIONAL PARK, MONTANA
DAY 13 – GLACIER NATIONAL PARK, MONTANA: Glacier Park
DAY 14 – ALL ABOARD!
DAY 15 - JOURNEY HOME
Beginning at just $4,495 per person and offered only two more times on August 6 and September 3, this amazing 15-day trip will sell quickly so call us at 1-800-323-5893 for more details.
Azamara Club Cruises is well-known for its destinations, unique itineraries, overnight stays and night touring in ports of call. But they’re also known for their cuisine as well. Guests can choose from six distinctive dining options, including a wonderfully decadent 24-hour room service. Whether you prefer haute cuisine or just some down- home cooking, you will enjoy the freshest ingredients, meticulous preparation and an almost endless variety of choices. With a wide variety of nightly selections like filet mignon with black truffle sauce, Discoveries Restaurant is a hands-down favorite for elegant yet lively dining with a renewed décor. You have the choice of being seated at a table for two or as part of a larger group of fellow guests (which is a great way to meet new people). While a casual “pool grill” during the day, in the evening The Patio is completely transformed into a sit-down al fresco dining experience. Fine tablecloths and flickering candles will set the mood while a reimagined menu is served by our professional wait staff. In addition, specialty restaurants such as Aqualina, with its backdrop of floor to ceiling views, and Prime C, a classic wood-paneled steakhouse, will satisfy your every culinary desire.
Sample these delightful venues on the newly-reimagined Azamara Quest on a glorious 33-day voyage from Montreal to New Orleans or 28-day voyage from Montreal to Miami, departing September 24.
There are many different ways to enjoy afternoon tea. We don’t think there’s any right way or wrong way. But we do think there are some ways which are far better than others. A traditional English tea is, however, the best way. It feels like a brief 90-minute vacation from our vacation. And nobody does it better than Cunard Line who, after all, has been serving tea aboard their ships since 1840. If you join us on one of our trips that include a voyage on the Queen Mary 2, such as our 11-day Fall Colors with the Queen cruise and train tour departing October 1, 2016. Tea on the Queen is as it can get. You are not only surrounded by British servers, you are on an English icon, one of the last bastions of refined service and a dedication to the nuances of proper afternoon tea.
The china is bone. The silver teapot is polished. The watercress sandwiches precise in their appearance and taste. The scones light and heavenly. The clotted cream rich and delicious. The petit fours packaged like little jewels. And outside the windows, the ocean stretches from horizon to horizon. It is utterly transcendent, delightfully decadent and gloriously authentic. While some might argue that the essence of proper English tea is enjoyed in a an estate overlooking the rolling green countryside, for those of us at Uncommon Journeys, there is no better location than while sailing aboard an ocean liner. Tea at sea was meant to be.
Jack Frost Nipping at Your Nose
Even morning in the Canadian Rockies can have a refreshing chill before the warm sunny days begin. Here, a guest has captured the frost on one of the historical alongside Lake Louise in Banff National Park, one of the stops on both our 15-day Best of the West train tours roundtrip from Chicago departing August 6 and September 3 and our 8-day Elegant Canadian Rockies train tours from Seattle to Calgary departing August 18 and September 15.
If you’d like to see a photo from one of your own Uncommon Journeys trips featured in our newsletter, just email it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and be sure to note in your email that we can use it for marketing purposes.
Moving a Riverboat
We are delighted to have the singular pleasure of introducing America's premium river cruise tour with our newest partner, French America Line. Sail from the charms of the Mississippi Headwaters along the upper Mississippi to the intoxicating Creole, Cajun, and French tapestry of the Deep South and through the rugged beauty of Tennessee’s Wilderness Rivers region. The Louisiane has the soul of a romantic and the enthusiasm of an explorer and is designed to offer unique itineraries such as voyages along the Red River. The Louisiane celebrates the cultural and epicurean influences of la belle France mixed with warm Southern hospitality and refined, unobtrusive service. The Louisiane represents the best of all possible worlds and we invite you to experience river cruising in America like never before.
But there’s just one hitch. She is being completely refurbished in New Orleans but was purchased while sitting in Portland, Oregon. Riverboats are built for rivers, not oceans. So how do you get a riverboat from Oregon to New Orleans through the Panama Canal? By barge, of course! The Louisiane has been buttoned up tight and is being loaded onto a barge for the month-long tow down the pacific Coast, through the canal and into the Gulf of Mexico before heading up the Mississippi River to New Orleans. While she can take you to many of America’s greatest treasures, this just might be her most unique voyage of all.
While most people know that Yellowstone was our nation’s first national park and that we have Teddy Roosevelt to thank for creating the underpinnings of the National Park Service, we generally know very little about the beginnings of a similar and equally dramatic chain of national parks in our neighbor to the north, Canada.
Banff National Park is one of the most beautiful places on earth. With its soaring, jagged, snow-covered peaks, dramatic waterfalls, Caribbean-blue mountain lakes and towering green pines, it is awe-inspiring. It’s also Canada’s first national park, established in 1885, only 13 years after Yellowstone National Park.
But the idea for Canadian national parks began in what is now the charming mountain town of Banff itself. Just past the tony restaurants and shops of downtown, across the sleek footbridge that crosses the Bow River a mile upstream of Bow Falls and with a sweeping view of the town and the mountains that ring its borders, is Cave and Basin National Historic Site. It is revered as the true birthplace of Canada’s national parks.
We invite you to discover the origin story of Canada’s national parks yourself with Uncommon Journeys. It’s one of our featured attractions during our multi-night Banff stay during our 8-day Elegant Canadian Rockies train tours from Toronto to Vancouver departing August 18 and September 15. Visit www.uncommonjourneys.com or call 1-800-323-5893 for additional details.
“There comes a moment on a journey when something sweet, something irresistible and charming as wine raised to thirsty lips, wells up in the traveler's being.”
Spicy Shrimp Salad in Lettuce Cups
Acclaimed chef, author and restaurateur is French America Line’s Chef de Cuisine and below we present one of her favorite recipes and one surely destined to be a guest favorite such as on the 8-day Midwest Majesty cruise featured in this month’s newsletter. Enjoy!
Top 10 Things to Do in Banff
We love Banff, Alberta and not just because it’s so spectacular but because there’s so much to do. That’s why it’s one of our featured multi-night stays on our 8-day Elegant Canadian Rockies train tour from Seattle to Calgary departing August 18 and September 15. If you want to hit the highlights, here’s our insider tips for the Top 10 Things to Do in Banff:
1. Have afternoon tea the spectacular Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel
We hope you have the opportunity to experience what sets Uncommon Journeys apart on one--or more--of our enticing itineraries. Visit www.uncommonjourneys.com or call 1-800-323-5893 for more information.
Time Is Relative in Arches National Park
Time is a funny thing. It isn’t something you can capture, something you can describe, something you can change or alter. It’s simply something you must accept. It is always with us, always reminding us of our journey through life. They say that “time waits for no man.” It’s a trite expression but unequivocally true. But time operates on two different scales. It “waits for no man” and it also doesn’t even acknowledge the existence of man at all. Time operates on a scale where the entire existence of man is less than the blink of an eye. How can we possibly comprehend the passage of time?
We find that a trip to one of our National Park is the closest thing to stopping – and understanding – time that we can find. For example, just look at one of our favorite destinations, Arches National Park. Always one of our most beloved parks on one of our trips, Arches is a testament to the long march of time itself.
The National Park Service explains that “the story of Arches begins roughly 65 million years ago. At that time, the area was a dry seabed spreading from horizon to horizon. Then the landscape slowly began to change. First, geologic forces wrinkled and folded the buried sandstone, as if it were a giant rug and someone gathered two edges towards each other, making lumps across the middle called Anticlines. As the sandstone warped, fractures tore through it, establishing the patterns for rock sculptures of the future. Next, the entire region began to rise, climbing from sea level to thousands of feet in elevation. What goes up must come down, and the forces of erosion carved layer after layer of rock away. Once exposed, deeply buried sandstone layers rebounded and expanded, like a sponge expands after it's squeezed (though not quite so quickly). This created even more fractures, each one a pathway for water to seep into the rock and further break it down.”
“Today, water shapes this environment more than any other force. Small recesses develop and grow bigger with each storm. Little by little, this process turns fractured rock layers into fins, and fins into arches. Arches also emerge when potholes near cliff edges grow deeper and deeper until they wear through the cliff wall below them,” the national Park Service says.
When the formation and history of the natural features of Arches National Park is described by the National Park Service, it puts time into perspective, doesn’t it? The thing about time is that, in a sense, it’s timeless. When we start talking about millions of years passing, it is on a scale that no longer has meaning. We look at the arches dotting the desert landscape and it seems as if they’ve always been there. But they haven’t; there was a time they didn’t exist at all.
Slow down time and you increase our understanding of a place and the people that created it, protected it or preserved it. Arches National Park, like many parks in the United States, is a relatively new destination when compared to the course of our country’s history. Compared to the advance and retreat of the glaciers, it is still a mere baby. But for our Uncommon Journeys guests, once experienced it is a memory that will last forever.
“I can’t even begin to say how fantastic my recent Elegant Canadian Rockies trip was. You have this trip down to a science and beginning with the lovely Vista-Dome Streamliner overnight ride from Seattle to Glacier National park was a real treat! The night in Watertown as like discovering a hidden jewel. Accolades for choosing to spend four nights in Banff. There is so much to see and do, we felt like we got to know it in-depth. The included dinners, especially the amazing farewell dinner at Le Beaujolais, were real treats. This trip was so wonderful, we’d even go again!”
As always, visit us at the Uncommon Journeys Facebook page for the latest news, photos and lively discussions about luxury train travel, our itineraries and the fantastic places we take you. You’ll be among the very first to hear about new trips, new offers and future sweepstakes. Visit www.uncommonjourneys.com or call 1-800-323-5893 to learn more.
* Note that this is an EXCLUSIVE Limited offer that is made available ONLY to subscribers of this e-newsletter and must be redeemed by calling Uncommon Journeys at 1-800-323-5893. This offer expires on Monday, August 15, 2016 and is only available for new bookings.