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© 2017 ROCKY MOUNTAINEER                                                                                                            SPONSORED CONTENT

Going on a vacation with a parent can be one of the most gratifying trips you’ll take. It creates memories that last years, strengthens bonds and allows you to get to know each other better. Travelling with parents does have its own considerations to factor in, but with a little preparation, these can actually enhance the trip for everyone. Things like moving more slowly, taking time to reflect on your shared experiences, savouring every moment, and looking closer at the things you pass by are all ways you can enjoy a stress-free trip with a parent. And while there’s no one-size-fits-all trip, one of the best ways to travel with an older family member or friend is by train. Here’s why.

You can stop and smell the forest
The Japanese art of forest bathing, Shinrin-yoku, has been called a gentle path to wellness. At its core is a simple message: taking time to mindfully experience nature is good for you. Canada is filled with incredible nature and wilderness but few places offer as many awe-inspiring forest, mountain and lake views than in British Columbia and Alberta. If you’re seeking an opportunity to slow down AND see the sights out west, one of the top ways to experience it is on a journey aboard iconic luxury train, Rocky Mountaineer.

With a choice of four routes to the Rockies as well as some sights that are difficult to reach by foot or car, Rocky Mountaineer’s slow-moving, daytime-only journeys allow you to experience a deeper connection to nature – and each other. You’ll have more time to compare notes on gourmet meals, marvel at the world going by your window, or breathe it all in on an outdoor viewing platform. Train travel onboard Rocky Mountaineer is a perfect way to spend quality time with each other and yet still see nature in comfort.

Experience Canada’s rugged wilderness – without the hassle
One of the worst things about travel is the need to haul around your luggage. On a Rocky Mountaineer trip, baggage is checked in at your departure train station, and will be waiting for you at the hotel of your overnight destinations on your journey. All you need during your train journey is a day bag, and the rest is taken care of by onboard Hosts or crew. There is no stress, no strenuous activity – just enjoying Western Canada’s remarkable wilderness in style.  On arrival, transport to hotels is also arranged, as are any tours (to the Columbia Icefield, a day tour or heli trip) that were booked in advance. You’ll get to see the Canada’s Wild West from the train by day, and spend the evening relaxing in your hotel or exploring towns like Banff, Jasper and Lake Louise by night – or longer if you choose.

Service in comfort
There are two levels of service onboard Rocky Mountaineer, and both will leave you and your parent feeling spoiled. GoldLeaf Service features a bi-level coach with glass-domed windows along the top, and exclusive, whitelinen dining available below. Mobility issues? No problem. There’s even an elevator between them! Onboard dining gets a five-star treatment. Prepared by award-winning executive chefs, sweet and savoury meals are served in the dining level of the GoldLeaf coach, or in the comfort of your own seat with SilverLeaf Service. Once you arrive at your destination you can relax at the hotel or check out the range of dinner options, including historic restaurants and hotel lounges. But as with all travel bookings, do make sure you advise the person who books your trip of any mobility or wheelchair requirements in advance – Rocky Mountaineer can arrange pre-boarding and assistance if notified ahead of time.

Explore Western Canada’s History
Getting to experience a piece of Canadian history together is another benefit of travelling with a parent by rail. Canada was joined from east to west by the railway and some of our most scenic sights are best experienced along the tracks. Rocky Mountaineer’s First Passage to the West route, for example, travels through the historic site of Craigellachie (near Revelstoke, British Columbia), where the last spike on the CP Railway was driven in 1885. Experiencing a taste of Canadian history is something you and your parent can enjoy together, swapping stories and discovering tales from the Rockies’ past – as you create new ones of your own!