Holidays By Rail

Call a rail holiday specialist 0800 033 7960


Empire Builder - The Chicago to Seattle train provides views of the Mississippi River, takes you into Big Sky country past Glacier National Park before reaching Seattle.



Empire Builder

The mighty long-distance Amtrak trains of North America have a few routes that have memorable names. The Southwest Chief, the Zephyr, the Coast Starlight and the City of New Orleans are just some of these.

One such as this is the Empire Builder; its route taking you from the extraordinary architecture of Chicago to the historic logging city of Seattle in a two night unforgettable journey.

Traveling daily between Chicago and the Pacific Northwest along major portions of the trail that the explorers, Lewis and Clark, took in the early 1800s, Amtrak's Empire Builder provides the perfect way to experience the rugged splendour of the American West.

The Empire Builder takes you on an exciting adventure through a majestic wilderness, following the footsteps of the early pioneers.

From Chicago, you'll have magnificent views of the Mississippi and see the glowing night skyline of Minneapolis and St. Paul. You’ll enjoy breakfast the next morning as you cross the North Dakota plains and travel over the spectacular Gassman Coulee Trestle. Skirting the famed Missouri River, which, further down its path, joins the Mississippi, you'll cross into the Big Sky country in Montana.

Passing beautiful Glacier National Park and the awe-inspiring Cascade Mountains you will ultimately arrive in picturesque Seattle on the banks of Puget Sound.

It takes forty six hours to complete the trip; you won’t forget a single minute.

Empire Builder Information



The Dining Car on Amtrak's Empire Builder
Empire Builder near Marias Pass

Scenic highlights include

  • The Mississippi river
  • Minneapolis skyline
  • Gassman Coulee Trestle
  • Glacier National Park
  • Cascade Mountains
  • Puget Sound

The Empire Builder Route Map


Empire Builder Route Map
Amtrak's Empire Builder Experience Route Map

Rail Journeys on The Empire Builder

National Parks of the West

St. Mary Lake - Glacier National Park Six National Parks are the hallmark of this exciting escorted rail tour through America’s heartland. Enjoy visits to Glacier National Park and the famed Going-to-the-Sun Road, Yellowstone National Park, Grand Teton National Park, Arches and Canyonlands National Parks, and Waterton Lake National Park in Canada.
14 Days From: £2,069
View National Parks of the West



Yellowstone & Glacier Adventure By Rail

Elk in Yellowstone National Park Travel aboard the legendary California Zephyr and visits to three National Parks are highlights of this escorted rail holiday. Your tour takes you to Salt Lake City, Jackson Hole and Grand Teton, Yellowstone, and Glacier National Parks.
11 Days From: £1,590
View Yellowstone & Glacier Adventure By Rail



Empire Builder with Alaska Cruise to Glacier Bay

ms Oosterdam in Glacier Bay This unique rail-cruise itinerary combines travel aboard the historic Empire Builder with a cruise through Alaska’s Inside Passage including a visit to Glacier Bay.
11 days From: From £1,190
View Empire Builder with Alaska Cruise to Glacier Bay




Empire Builder with Alaska Cruise to Hubbard Glacier

Amtrak's Empire Builder This rail-cruise combination package includes a scenic rail route through America’s heartland with a 7-day cruise through Alaska’s Inside Passage including a visit to the breathtaking Hubbard Glacier.
11 days From: From £1082
View Empire Builder with Alaska Cruise to Hubbard Glacier



Empire Builder with Glacier National Park

Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National Park Discover the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest and the scenic wonders of “The Crown of the Continent” as you travel from Chicago to Seattle with a stay at one of America’s best-loved natural attractions, Glacier National Park, along your route.
7 days From: From £901
View Empire Builder with Glacier National Park



  1. Train Tickets
  2. Schedule
  3. Amenities
  4. Accommodations
  5. Train Carriages

Train Tickets


Sample City Pairs
Chicago, IL to Seattle, WA Chicago, IL to Minneapolis, MN
Chicago, IL to Glacier National Park, MT
Chicago, IL to Portland, OR
Seattle, WA to Glacier National Park, MT
Portland, OR to Glacier National Park, MT

Empire Builder Schedule


Download Schedule

Amenities

Meals

All meals on the train for roomette and cabin passengers are included in the price. Full-course meals, snacks, cold drinks and alcoholic beverages are always available for additional purchase. The meals on board are generally of a high quality. Significantly better than airline food and the view is incomparable! The tables are set with linen and china and metal – not plastic – cutlery.

Baggage

Carry-on (per traveller):
  • Maximum 2 pieces
  • Maximum dimensions of each carry-on: 71 x 55 x 35 cm (28 x 22 x 14 in.)
  • Maximum weight of each carry-on: 23 kg (50 lb.)
Checked baggage (per traveller): You cannot access checked bags until the conclusion of your trip.
  • Maximum 3 pieces (there is no excess baggage provision)
  • Maximum dimensions: 90 x 90 x 90 cm (36 x 36 x 36 in)
  • Maximum weight: Up to 23 kg (50 lb.)

Smoking policy

Amtrak trains are non-smoking. You may smoke on station platforms at longer stops only when this is announced by train crews. Smoking elsewhere and at other times is not allowed. Smoking is only allowed at longer stops at the discretion of the train crew.

You must remain nearby the train and be ready to re-board immediately upon hearing the sound of the locomotive horn and the call by the conductor for ‘All Aboard.’

Accommodations

Coach class seating

Each seat has an individually controlled overhead reading lamp and fold-down trays. There is room for your luggage in overhead racks and well-appointed restrooms within the car.

Coach class seats recline approximately 35 degrees for sleeping and are spacious with substantial legroom; comparable with business class on an airplane.

There are 120v power sockets for laptops (but no Internet access) and mobile phones at each seat and drinking water is available in each coach. Pillows are provided at night, and you can either bring a blanket or buy an Amtrak blanket in the station or on board.

  • Big, comfortable seats
  • Fold-down trays
  • Individual reading lamps
  • Ample legroom
  • Space to walk around and stretch your legs

Amtrak Coach Class
Coach Class Seat on an Amtrak Superliner

Coach Class Day
Coach Class Seat



Superliner Roomette class:

The Superliner Roomette is ideal for one or two passengers, with two comfortable reclining seats on either side of a big picture window. At night, the two seats convert into a comfortable bed and an upper berth folds down from above. Roomettes are located on both upper and lower levels of our double-decker Superliner train cars.

There is storage capacity in the roomette for two small tote bags. Unsecured storage for luggage is on the lower level of the train car.

  • Room dimensions: 3'6" x 6'8"
  • Lower berth size: 2'4" x 6'6"
  • Upper berth size: 2'0" x 6'0"
  • Meals included
  • First Class status
  • Picture window
  • Two reclining seats which convert to a bed; upper berth which folds down from wall
  • Available on both upper and lower levels of the Superliner
  • Restrooms and showers are nearby in the same train car
  • Electrical outlets
  • Temperature control
  • Individual reading lights
  • Clothes rack
  • Fold-down table
  • Fresh towels and bed linens
  • Soap and shower amenities
  • Personal service (turn-down, coffee, make-up bed)
  • Bottled water
  • Daily newspaper

Roomette during the day
Superliner Roomette during the day

Roomette at night
Superliner Roomette at night



Superliner Bedroom class:

The Superliner Bedroom is ideal for two passengers (but can accommodate two adults and a small child). Each room has a large sofa with two individually reclining sections, and a reclining easy chair. At night, the sofa converts to a comfortable bed and an upper berth folds down from above. All Superliner Bedrooms feature private, self-enclosed restrooms with toilet, sink and shower. All Bedrooms are located on the upper level of our double-decker Superliner train cars.

There is storage capacity for two regular suitcases.

  • Total room dimensions: 6'6" x 7'6"
  • Lower berth dimensions: 3'4" x 6'3"
  • Upper berth dimensions: 2'4" x 6'2"
  • Meals included
  • First Class status
  • Superb comfort for two passengers
  • Large picture window
  • Upper and lower berths
  • Armchair and couch (converts to lower berth)
  • Private sink, vanity, private toilet and shower
  • Electrical outlets
  • Temperature control
  • Individual reading lights
  • Clothes rack
  • Fold-down table
  • Fresh towels and bed linens
  • Soap and shower amenities
  • Personal service (turn-down, coffee, tea, make-up bed)
  • Bottled water
  • Daily newspaper

Bedroom during day
Superliner Bedroom during the day

Bedroom at night
Superliner Bedroom at night



Superliner Bedroom Suite:

The Superliner Bedroom Suite is made up of two Superliner Bedrooms opened up and combined together. The Suite is designed for four passengers (but can accommodate up to six). The suite offers two private, self-enclosed toilets and showers in the cabin.

There is storage capacity for four regular suitcases.

  • Total room dimensions (each room): 6'6" x 7'6"
  • Lower berth dimensions (each room): 3'4" x 6'3"
  • Upper berth dimensions (each room): 2'4" x 6'2"
  • Meals included
  • First Class status
  • Superb comfort for two passengers
  • Large picture window
  • Upper and lower berths
  • Armchair and couch (converts to lower berth)
  • Private sink, vanity, private toilet and shower
  • Electrical outlets
  • Temperature control
  • Individual reading lights
  • Clothes rack
  • Fold-down table
  • Fresh towels and bed linens
  • Soap and shower amenities
  • Personal service (turn-down, coffee, tea, make-up bed)
  • Bottled water
  • Daily newspaper

Bedroom during day
Superliner Bedroom during the day

Bedroom at night
Superliner Bedroom at night

Superliner Family Bedroom:

The Family Bedroom spans the entire width of the car and has two picture windows. The sofa and two reclining seats convert to beds and the two upper berths fold down from above. Located on the lower level of Superliner sleeping cars, these bedrooms include two adult-sized berths and two child-sized berths.

There is storage capacity for two to three regular suitcases.

  • Total room dimensions: 5'2" x 9'5"
  • Lower berth dimensions (Adult): 3'4" x 6'3"
  • Upper berth dimensions (Adult): 2'4" x 6'2"
  • Lower berth dimensions (Child): 2'3" x 4'9"
  • Upper berth dimensions (Child): 2'0" x 4'7"
  • Meals included
  • First Class status
  • Space for up to two adults and two children
  • Large picture window
  • Upper and lower berths
  • Sofa (converts to lower berth)
  • Two reclining seats (convert to a bed)
  • Electrical outlets
  • Temperature control
  • Individual reading lights
  • Clothes rack
  • Fold-down table
  • Fresh towels and bed linens
  • Soap and shower amenities
  • Personal service (turn-down, coffee, tea, make-up bed)
  • Bottled water
  • Daily newspaper

Family Bedroom during day
Superliner Family Bedroom during the day

Family Bedroom at night
Superliner Family Bedroom at night

Train Carriages

The Empire Builder carriages are double decker. The smaller two berth roomettes and larger two to three berth bedrooms are on the upper deck, whilst the lower deck has additional roomettes, a family bedroom and a bedroom with wheelchair access. The bedrooms have a private shower and toilet, for roomette passengers there are toilets on both upper and lower decks, and a hot shower on the lower deck.

Coach Carriage

Cars have large, comfortable Coach seats on both upper and lower levels. They also recline, feature foot and leg rests, individual reading lights, fold-down trays and overhead luggage racks. Plus, you’ll enjoy the panoramic views from the oversized windows throughout the car.

Coach Carriage

Lounge Carriage

With oversized windows, you can soak in the countryside and meet new friends in the Sightseer Lounge car. When you’re ready for a bite to eat, head to the lower level for sandwiches, snacks, beverages and souvenirs. This car is so much fun, you might not want to return to your seat.

Lounge Carriage

Dining Carriage

The Dining car offers a truly unique culinary experience. Restaurant-style meals. Impressive views. All on the upper level of a train. The menu features a wide array of breakfast, lunch and dinner entrées, including vegetarian dishes.

Dining Carriage

Sleeper Carriage

The Bedroom offers two adult berths, in-room sink, toilet and shower. The Family Bedroom has two adult berths and two children’s berths. Public restrooms and showers are nearby for the convenience of Family Bedroom and Roomette passengers. The Accessible Bedroom has extra wheelchair space and a curtained-off area with in-room sink and toilet. All Sleeping car passengers are entitled to complimentary Dining car meals, bottled water, coffee, juice, fresh linens, bedding, towels, washcloths and soap.

Sleeper Carriage

Great Rail Journeys

Industry Awards

British Travel Awards Winner 2013 Best Small Holidays By Train Tour Operator
British Travel Awards Winner 2012 Best Small Holidays By Train Tour Operator
TravelMole Web Awards UK 2012 Winner

Newsletter Sign Up


TOP