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GRAND FALL TOUR: New Hampshire, Vermont And The Adirondacks


 
 
October 1-11 2017
Tour from $3699.00


This year our Grand Fall Tour explores Vermont, New Hampshire and the Lake George area of New York’s Adirondack Mountains. Rail Travel Adventures Tour Manager Deb Carbin, the former Manager of Passenger Services for the Green Mountain Railroad is your tour escort. The program emphasizes branch line trains, meals in country inns, beautiful lake cruises and continuous views of the vibrant colors that define the New England autumn.

Train journeys include a diverse collection of railways, including Amtrak’s VERMONTER. We ascend the yawning gulf of Crawford Notch on the Conway Scenic Railroad and enjoy an elegant dinner on the Café Lafayette Dinner Train. We ascend the tallest peak in New England (Mount Washington) on the world’s first cog-railway, and have a lovely journey along the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee while enjoying a turkey dinner on the unique dinner train of the Winnipesaukee Railroad. Cruises include the island-dotted waters of Lake Winnipesaukee aboard the century-old lake-steamer “Mount Washington” and sailing beautiful Lake George to the wild upper lake on the magnificent steamboat recreation the “M/V Lac du Saint Sacrement”, while enjoying a fine luncheon buffet. As always, our tour includes relaxing multi-night stays at charming inns and grand hotels, historic sightseeing, and special meals at fine restaurants. Complete details follow. All aboard!

Please note to fully and comfortably participate in this tour, it is necessary to walk for distances of several blocks at some of the outdoor historic sites and to climb steps. Many of the hotels used are non-smoking.
Day One, Sunday, Oct 1 Independent arrivals into Albany. Tour participants can arrive into Albany today by air or rail. A pre-tour night is included at the fine Albany Hilton hotel in the heart of downtown. The hotel will pick up guests at either the Amtrak station or the airport.

Day Two, Monday, October 2 (B,L)
Green Mountains of Vermont; We depart Albany this morning on our chartered motorcoach and travel through the upper Hudson River Valley and the Green Mountains of Vermont to the
Lovely village of Manchester. Here we visit Hildene, the home of Robert Todd Lincoln, the only son of President Lincoln to live to adulthood. Robert Todd Lincoln became the President of the great railway sleeping car builder, Pullman. A new exhibit here is the exquisitely restored 1903 Pullman Car “Sunbeam”. We enjoy lunch in the lovely village of Chester at the Fullerton Inn, and later make a shopping stop at the Rockingham location of the renowned Vermont Country Store—the purveyor of everything you used to use!

Our destination is the village of Meredith on the northwest shore of New England’s largest lake, Lake Winnipesaukee. We stay four nights at the cozy Inn at Mill Falls. The hotel is a contemporary New England country inn with traditional décor, beautiful gardens, on-site shopping and a waterfall that cascades through the hotel! A full breakfast is included each day at the Inn’s Waterfall Café. There are four different restaurants associated with our hotel for dinners, with cuisine ranging from pizza to steak, seafood and gourmet fare.

Day Three, Tuesday, October 3 (B,L,D)
Canterbury Shaker Village; Franconia Notch; Café Lafayette Dinner Train. Today is devoted to views of high peaks and glorious fall colors by motorcoach and train. We begin by visiting Canterbury Shaker Village, learning about Shaker history and beliefs, and visiting various original buildings. There is a lovely craft shop here, as well. Lunch, featuring Shaker recipes, is included here. We then make the beautiful drive to Franconia Notch. Photo stops allow us to view the former site of the famous “Old Man of the Mountain” rock face and Echo Lake. Our final activity this evening is a real treat: an elegant dinner on the Café Lafayette Dinner Train. Our ride follows the former Boston and Maine Lincoln branch along the tumbling waters of the Pemigewasset River.
 
 
Day Four, Wednesday, October 4 (B,L) Crawford Notch Railroad; Mount Washington Cog Railway.

We drive to the village of North Conway and board the Conway Scenic Railroad’s Crawford Notch train. This may be the most spectacular preservation railway line in the Northeast as it ascends past rushing rivers and up very steep grades through Crawford Notch. Enroute, the views of the Notch and Mount Washington from the Frankenstein Trestle (its real name) are wonderful! We have an included picnic luncheon on the train. At Crawford Notch Station, we re-board our coach and drive to Base Station to ride the Mount Washington Cog Railway. We ascend to the 6,288-foot summit, the crest of New England. Enroute we travel from deep forests to open alpine tundra. On a clear day, the summit vista encompasses four states and the Canadian province of Quebec! We return to Meredith in early evening.
 
 
Day Five, Thursday, October 5 (B,D)
Lake Winnipesaukee cruise; turkey dinner on Winnipesaukee RR.
Today we re-create the Boston and Maine Railroad’s once-famous circuit of Lake Winnipesaukee by rail, lake-steamer and coach. This morning we board the century-old “M/V Mount Washington” for a voyage on the waters of Lake Winnipesaukee from Weirs Beach to Alton Bay. We then motor along the shore back to Meredith for free time in the afternoon. The fine stores of the Mill Falls Marketplace are located at our hotel, and there are lovely paths to walk along the lake. This evening we ride the Winnipesaukee Railroad along the shore from Meredith south through Weirs Beach to Laconia while enjoying a delicious turkey dinner, carved to order at each table!
 
 
Day Six, Friday, October 6 (B,L)Saint Gaudens National Historic Site, luncheon at Simon Pierce Glassworks
This morning we drive to Cornish, NH to visit the only National Park site devoted to sculpture, the Saint Gaudens National Historic Site. Augustus Saint-Gaudens (1848-1907) created over 150 works of art, from exquisitely carved cameos to heroic-size public monuments. Works such as the "Standing Lincoln" monument and the Shaw Memorial, continue to inspire people today and his design for the 1907 Twenty Dollar Gold Piece, is considered America's most beautiful coin. We’ll see the artist’s remarkable studio and sculpture garden during our visit. We cross into Vermont and enjoy lunch at the renowned Simon Pierce Glassworks, with time to see the glass-blowing and photograph the falls of the Quechee River just outside the dining room. After lunch, we take a scenic drive across the state. Our home for the next three nights is the comfortable full-service Doubletree Hotel in Burlington, VT.
 
Day Seven, Saturday, October 7 (B)
Shelburne Farms; Shelburne Museum. From Burlington, it’s only a few miles south to Shelburne. Here we tour the estate of the Webb family, Shelburne Farms, and taste the award-winning cheese still produced here. This afternoon, we explore the extraordinary Shelburne Museum, which superficially appears to be a re-createdNew England village but actually is far more. Electra Havermeyer Webb assembled a great collection of “Americana” for display at the Shelburne Museum. A horseshoe barn contains a hand-carved circus parade. Another barn houses stagecoaches and carriages. A country inn reveals a collection of ship figureheads and cigar store Indians. Other buildings contain old master paintings, Adirondack guide boats, railway equipment and wooden toys. The former Shelburne depot of the Rutland RR seems to await the departure of a steam train, pulled by the last steam locomotive of the Central Vermont RY. Perhaps the most remarkable treasure is the huge, fully-furnished walking-beam steamboat “S.S. Ticonderoga”, which was dragged overland two miles from Lake Champlain to the museum in the 1950s. We can explore the “Ti” from pilothouse to engine room.
 
 
Day Eight, Sunday, October 8 (B,L)
Birds of Vermont Museum; Trapp Family Lodge; Cold Hollow Cider Mill.
We enjoy unique experiences on a day devoted to the birds and foods of Vermont. In the deep woods, a few miles south of Waterbury, we visit the Birds of Vermont Museum, a true “hidden treasure”. Here, one man has carved all the birds native to Vermont and displayed them in natural habitat dioramas. Lunch today is at the famous Trapp Family Lodge, overlooking the spectacular mountain scenery toward Stowe. We have time to visit the Austrian gift shop or take a scenic walk before returning down the mountain. Enroute back to Burlington, we make a shopping and tasting stop at Cold Hollow Cider Mill, which makes wonderful apple cider and apple products. We can learn how they make cider and sample it, along with other food products. Fresh apple cider doughnuts are for sale here, as well as a broad selection of foods and crafts of Vermont and New England.

Day Nine, Monday, October 9 (B)
Amtrak’s VERMONTER; Calvin Coolidge Historic Site; to Glens Falls. We board Amtrak’s VERMONTER at Essex Junction for a scenic run to Bellows Falls on the New England Central Railroad. This is the route of the former Central Vermont Railway and includes a crossing of the Green Mountains at Roxbury Summit and the gorges of the Winooski and White Rivers. We pass three covered bridges at Northfield village and see some of Vermont’s prettiest towns from the train this morning. A light lunch can be purchased on-board in the café-lounge car.

This afternoon we’ll visit Plymouth Notch, a tiny village preserved as a state historic site because it is the birthplace of President Calvin Coolidge. While visiting his father here in 1923, Vice-President Coolidge learned President Harding had died. As the local Justice of the Peace, his father administered the oath of office in the Coolidge home’s tiny parlor! Later we cross into the Adirondack Mountains region of New York for a two-night stay at the landmark Queensbury Hotel in Glens Falls.

Day Ten, Tuesday, October 10 (B,L) Fort Ticonderoga; Adirondack Mountains; Lake George cruise. This morning we drive the Adirondack Northway (which won national awards for its harmonious design in the protected wild lands of Adirondack State Park) to the restored stone citadel of Fort Ticonderoga. Ticonderoga was bitterly contested in both the French and Indian and the Revolutionary Wars. It has a fine museum and a beautiful prospect looking across Lake Champlain to the Green Mountains of Vermont. A short drive takes us into the beautiful Adirondack Mountains for our Farewell Lunch enjoyed while sailing the mountain-circled waters of Lake George. We board the recreation of a 19th century lake-packet boat, the “M/V Lac du Saint Sacrement”, for a cruise up the “Lake Lucerne of America” past high peaks and magnificent estates to the rocky islands that dot the roadless upper reaches of the lake. After the cruise, we’ll enjoy free time to shop in the pretty village of Lake George. You can also optionally tour the restored Fort William Henry (admission not included), which is directly across the street from the pier. This was the location of the central plot events in James Fennimore Cooper’s great historical novel “The Last of the Mohicans”.

Day Eleven, Wednesday, October 11 (B)
SaratogaBattlefield National Military Park; tour ends. The “turning point” of the Revolutionary War was the 1777 defeat of British General John Burgoyne at the two Battles of Saratoga. Benedict Arnold, later the most infamous of traitors, was the hero of the American cause at the second Battle of Saratoga. We see the unique “traitor’s monument” to Arnold on our tour of this beautiful National Military Park. We conclude our tour with a 12:00 noon arrival at the Albany airport and a 12:30 p.m. drop-off at the Albany Amtrak station.

TOUR PRICES include all hotels; tour manager services; admissions; meals noted as included above; rail, coach and boat transportation; and luggage handling and transfers from our hotel in Albany to the Albany airport or Amtrak station at the end of the tour. Not included are connecting travel to Albany, other meals, alcoholic beverages, and items of a personal nature.

$3699.00 per person, double occupancy
$4299.00 single occupancy

FOR QUESTIONS AND TO BOOK:
Call Jessica Green (800) 639-3706 USA or 1 (603) 336-5444 from anywhere.