Mountains, Trains and a Touch of the Old West. The Best of Colorado

Cumbres Pass Summit, USA
Tanglefoot Curve, Cumbres and Toltec Railroad, USA
Cumbres and Toltec - © Peter Berger
Cumbres and Toltec - © Peter Berger
Cumbres and Toltec - © Peter Berger
State Capitol, Denver, Colorado, USA
16th Street Mall, Denver, Colorado, USA
Durango & Silverton Railroad, Colorado USA - © D&S Railroad
Durango and Silverton - © Peter Berger
Great Sand Dunes National Monument - © John Teasdale
Pike's Peak Colorado, USA
Rio Grande Scenic Railroad - © John Teasdale
Rio Grande Scenic Railroad - © John Teasdale
Rio Grande Scenic Railroad - © John Teasdale
Rio Grande Scenic Railroad - © Paul Davies
Royal Gorge, Colorado, USA - © Royal Gorge Railroad

Holiday Highlights

  • Scenic Journeys on 7 unforgettable railroads
  • Colorado Railroad Museum
  • Day trip to Taos Pueblo, a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Visit the Great Sand Dunes
  • Air Conditioned Private Coach for the duration of the trip
  • 13 days from £3,550pp
BOOK NOWTailor this tour for independent travel

Tour Dates:
Thursday 15 June to Tuesday 27 June 2017

This holiday includes the definitive selection of the very best and most famous railroads of Colorado. Many were pioneering lines of the Old West, now preserved as a living legend. All run through magnificent Rocky Mountain scenery.

Includes the Cumbres & Toltec Railroad, recently voted 'North America's Best Train Ride' - click here to see why.

ITINERARY

Day 1 – Our Journey Begins

We fly from London to Denver and transfer to our centrally located hotel.

Day 2 – The Georgetown Loop

Denver, the “Mile High City” is situated at the point where the plains of the Mid West meet the Rocky Mountains and, within a few minutes of leaving our hotel, we are already in the wonderful scenery for which the area is renowned. Because the various railways we visit are not rail connected to each other we will have an air conditioned coach at our disposal for the whole of the holiday. We stop first at Golden to visit the Colorado Railroad Museum and then head for Gerorgetown, a beautifully preserved mining town, to ride the Georgetown Loop narrow gauge line. The high spot of the train journey is a high curved trestle bridge. We return to Denver for overnight.

Day 3 – Lunch at the Royal Gorge

We now head south to Canon City and the Royal Gorge Railroad where lunch is served in the diner as we follow the raging Arkansas River upstream through the gorge. This was once part of a transcontinental main line and, even today, our train will be hauled by one of the iconic U.S. streamline diesel locos. Overnight stay in Colorado Springs.

Day 4 – Pikes Peak and Leadville

A short coach transfer to Manitou Springs before a morning ascent of Pikes Peak (14,110ft) by cog railway. In the afternoon we drive through the Rockies to Leadville, at 10,350ft the highest city in the USA and once the setting of Doc Holliday’s last shoot-out. As its name suggests, the town was once an important mining centre.

Day 5 – The Leadville, Colorado and Southern Railroad

We take a two and a half hour trip on this standard gauge preserved line, the far end of which is close to the Continental Divide – from here, streams flow east to the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic and west to the Pacific. In the afternoon we have a coach journey across the Poncha and Wolf Creek Passes to Pagosa Springs.

Day 6 – Durango and Silverton

We transfer to Durango for a morning steam train journey through the Animas Canyon to the old mining town of Silverton, now beautifully preserved as a reminder of the Wild West. There is time for lunch here before returning by train to Durango and coach transfer to Pagosa Springs.

Day 7 – Cumbres and Toltec

We head for Chama, New Mexico and join the narrow gauge steam train on the Cumbres and Toltec Railroad. The long climb to the summit at Cumbres Pass (10,015ft) is a real struggle for our loco but we can simply enjoy the fantastic views back down the valley. After lunch at Osier, we continue to Antonito for a transfer to Alamosa.

Day 8 – La Veta Pass

Return journey on Colorado’s newest preserved line, the standard gauge Rio Grande, that travels over the La Veta Pass to the picturesque mountain town of La Veta. The pass itself is the highest crossing of the Rockies by standard gauge train. The full excursion is just under nine hours which includes two hours for lunch and leisure in La Veta. Once again the train is steam hauled and we are assured of another memorable day.

Day 9 – The Great Sand Dunes

We visit the Great Sand Dunes National Park in the San Luis Valley where we find the tallest sand dunes in the USA, rising to 750ft.

Day 10 – Taos Pueblo

The multi-storied pueblo village is the largest of its kind in the USA and has been continuously inhabited for over 1000 years. It is now a UNESCO World Heritage site and makes for an interesting day trip by coach.

Day 11 – Return To Denver

It is now time to head back to Denver where we should arrive in the early afternoon.

Days 12 & 13 – Denver and Home

Most of today is free and there is plenty to see in the city. Late this afternoon we are transferred to the airport for our early evening flight to London where we are due to arrive the following lunchtime.

Tour Route

Tour route map

Selected Hotels

Holiday Inn Express Denver Downtown, Denver

Clarion Hotel, Colorado Springs

Delaware Hotel, Leadville

Quality Inn, Pagosa Springs

BW Alamosa Inn, Alamosa

Please note - hotels can be subject to change

Price Includes

  • Flights in Economy Class by scheduled airline
  • Private air-conditioned coach throughout the tour
  • Accommodation in good quality hotels on a room only basis
  • All excursions as per itinerary
  • Lunches on day 3 and 7
  • Services of a tour leader from London and throughout the tour

Price per person

Escorted holiday: £3,550
Single room supplement: £782
Deposit for this holiday: £200
   
Rates of exchange used are as at 1st August 2016

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