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Via Rail Canada is Canada's main provider of passenger train service. It provides service coast-to-coast across Canada, from the Atlantic to the Pacific, with 14,000 kilometres of track serving some 450 Canadian communities. Its trains run along the rocky coasts of the maritime provinces, in the busy Quebec City to Windsor corridor (including Toronto and Montreal), across the Prairies, north to the polar bears in Churchill, through the majestic Rocky Mountains and along the shores of Vancouver Island.
If travelling east, The Ocean leaves Montréal in the evening and travels through the small villages on the south shore of the St. Lawrence River before entering the Matapédia Valley. By very early morning, you'll see Chaleur Bay. From there, the Ocean heads south across New Brunswick, where it stops in Moncton before noon, and then continues on to Nova Scotia to arrive at Halifax around mid-afternoon.
There are three classes of service:
Offering downtown to downtown service between a number of cities in the Southern parts of Ontario and Quebec, frequent trains run between Windsor, London (Ontario), Toronto, Ottawa, Kingston, Montreal and Quebec City.
Two classes of service are available on these trains:
Depending on your train and class of service, you might be entitled to assigned seating or reserved seats. In Comfort class, a one-way ticket between Montréal and Toronto costs only $77 (Comfort Supersaver fare, purchase five days in advance, taxes extra), though prices can rise from there if the Supersaver category is sold out.
A 1,700 kilometres journey from Winnipeg to the sub-arctic shores of Churchill on Hudson Bay, this trip is a favorite way for travellers to get north to see the polar bears that frequent the area around Churchill. Train no. 693 leaves Winnipeg and travels via The Pas and Wabowden to Churchill. This is the train that travellers "from the South" take to visit Churchill and Hudson Bay. Train no. 692 makes the return journey. Trains number 290 and 291 carry passengers between The Pas and Pukatawagan. Connections with trains number 692 and 693 are easy and convenient. The train is also used by hunters, hikers and campers to get away from it all. The Hudson Bay also allows outdoor enthusiasts to get off the train anywhere they want by requesting a special stop.
The trip takes 3 days (2 nights).
Two classes are available:
Read more about the Hudson Bay at the Via Rail website, including schedules and how to book tickets.
Running between Union Station in Toronto, Ontario and Pacific Central Station in Vancouver, British Columbia, the The Canadian is the longest part of the trans-continential train journey across Canada. The train travels through the scenic lakelands and boreal forest of northern Ontario, across the western plains of the Prairies and the splendid Canadian Rockies, and finishes its journey on the Pacific coast of British Columbia. The journey takes three days: leaving Toronto on Tuesday morning, you arrive in Winnipeg on Wednesday afternoon, Jasper on Thursday afternoon, and Vancouver on Friday morning.
There are two classes of service available:
Information on all the routes, as well as schedules and booking information, can be found on Via Rail's website.
Costs depend on the schedule, class of service, date of travel and how far in advanced the tickets are booked.
If food is served, and the quality of the food served depends on the train you have chosen and the class of service. Some trains have dining cars, while others (especially in the Quebec City - Windsor corridor) will just serve food at your seat.
In Comfort class, alcohol is available for purchase. VIA 1 provides fee alcohol.
Sleeping cars are available on some trains. Details on the sleeping cars can be found on Sleeper car page on Via's website.
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