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Southwest Chief


Chicago - Kansas City - Albuquerque - Flagstaff - Los Angeles

The Southwest Chief service by Amtrak offers an iconic cross-country journey between Chicago, Illinois, and Los Angeles, California. Experience the beauty of the American West as the train traverses the plains of Kansas, the stunning landscapes of New Mexico and Arizona, and the scenic deserts of California.

Relax in comfortable seating or private sleeping accommodations and indulge in amenities like a dining car serving delicious meals and a lounge where you can socialize and take in the breathtaking views. With the Southwest Chief service, Amtrak provides an unforgettable travel experience that showcases the natural wonders of the West.

43 hours

Trip Time

2,265 mi (3,645 km)

Trip Length



Route Highlights

Chicago, Illinois: Chicago offers a vibrant urban experience with its iconic skyline, world-class museums, and a rich cultural scene. Don't miss the chance to visit Millennium Park, the Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower), and Navy Pier before beginning your Southwest Chief adventure

Kansas City, Missouri: Known for its rich jazz heritage and mouthwatering barbeque, passengers can explore the city's vibrant music scene and indulge in delectable culinary delights.

Colorado Plateau: The Southwest Chief traverses the stunning Colorado Plateau, offering passengers breathtaking views of red rock canyons, mesas, and unique geological formations. The rugged beauty of this region is a sight to behold.

La Junta, Colorado: This Colorado town has a rich railroad heritage, and passengers can visit the Koshare Indian Museum and view the fascinating exhibits on Native American culture and art.

Sangre de Cristo Mountains, Colorado/New Mexico: The Southwest Chief winds its way through the majestic Sangre de Cristo Mountains, offering passengers spectacular vistas of snow-capped peaks and dense forests.

Raton Pass, Colorado/New Mexico: As the train climbs through the rugged Raton Pass, passengers are treated to panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. This iconic pass has been a historic crossing point between Colorado and New Mexico.

Santa Fe, New Mexico: Known for its adobe architecture, art galleries, and vibrant arts scene, passengers can explore the city's cultural treasures and enjoy the unique southwestern ambiance. Accesible via Albuquerque or Lamy.

Albuquerque, New Meixco: This vibrant New Mexican city is a cultural gem along the route. Passengers can explore its historic Old Town, visit the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, and immerse themselves in the city's rich Native American and Hispanic heritage.

Gallup, New Mexico: As the train passes through Gallup, New Mexico, passengers can immerse themselves in Native American culture and arts by visiting the historic El Morro Theatre or exploring local galleries.

Arizona Desert: The train ventures through the vast and captivating Arizona Desert, showcasing the region's unique desert landscapes and the beauty of its arid terrain.

Flagstaff, Arizona: Flagstaff, Arizona, is a charming city nestled amidst the Coconino National Forest. Known for its stunning natural beauty, Flagstaff offers a gateway to numerous outdoor activities, including hiking in the San Francisco Peaks and exploring the Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument. Stroll through the historic downtown area to experience its unique blend of art, culture, and Southwestern charm.

Grand Canyon, Arizona: Hop aboard the historic Grand Canyon Railway in Williams, Arizona (via Flagstaff), and journey to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. Marvel at the awe-inspiring vistas of this majestic chasm, created by millions of years of geological history. The Grand Canyon's vastness and beauty will leave an indelible impression on every traveler's heart.

Los Angeles, California: The final destination of the Southwest Chief is the sunny city of Los Angeles. Passengers can explore the bustling metropolis, relax on sandy beaches, and visit iconic landmarks such as the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and experience the cultural diversity and entertainment that this iconic city offers.


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