Inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description.
NEW YORK CITY. Welcome to the “Big Apple!” Your Tour Director is on hand late this afternoon to answer any questions.
NEW YORK CITY. On today’s sightseeing tour, see New York City’s major attractions, including Broadway, the Empire State Building, Greenwich Village, City Hall, Wall Street, and Trinity Church. Your afternoon is free.
NEW YORK CITY–PHILADELPHIA– WASHINGTON DC AREA. Head south through New Jersey to Philadelphia, the birthplace of the United States. During your free time, perhaps see Independence Hall and visit the Liberty Bell. On to Washington DC.
WASHINGTON DC AREA. See the graves of American heroes, including those of John F. Kennedy and his brother Robert, in beautiful Arlington National Cemetery. The nation’s capital is a sightseeing treasure trove, and your half-day tour with a Local Guide features Capitol Hill, the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument, Arlington National Cemetery, National WWII Memorial, and other well-known sights. Stop for photos at the White House and Capitol Hill. As the remainder of the day is free, why not visit the Smithsonian museums?
WASHINGTON DC–NIAGARA FALLS, CANADA. A scenic day as you head north through Pennsylvania Dutch Country, home of the Amish and Mennonite religious sects. Then, along the Susquehanna River to Williamsport, the birthplace of Little League baseball and site of the league’s annual “World Series.” Later, cross the Rainbow Bridge to Canada and arrive at Niagara Falls, Ontario, for your overnight stay.
NIAGARA FALLS, CANADA–DEARBORN AREA. This morning, board your Niagara Falls SIGHTSEEING CRUISE for amazing close-up views from the base of the falls. Then, travel the Niagara Parkway, admiring the sweeping landscapes of this scenic countryside. Head southwest and cross the farmlands and vineyards of Ontario.NOTE: Operation of the Niagara Falls sightseeing cruise is subject to favorable weather and/or river conditions. If unfavorable conditions exist, a walking tour of the scenic tunnels will be substituted.
DEARBORN AREA–CHICAGO. Begin the day with a visit to the HENRY FORD MUSEUM. Don’t miss the “Automobile in American Life” exhibit. Reach Chicago, America’s third-largest city, in the late afternoon. City sightseeing includes all the major landmarks of the “Windy City.”
CHICAGO. Today is free for independent activities. Perhaps take an optional cruise on Lake Michigan and through the locks of the Chicago River. As the evening is free, join the optional outing for a delicious dinner at a Chicago restaurant, followed by spectacular views of the city from atop 360 Chicago, formerly the John Hancock Observatory.
CHICAGO–MADISON–MINNEAPOLIS. First stop today is Madison. A vibrant city, situated between two sparkling lakes. A photo stop at the capitol before making our way to Minnesota—the “Land of 10,000 Lakes.” Enjoy an orientation tour of the bustling downtown area of Minneapolis before reaching your overnight hotel.
MINNEAPOLIS. EXCURSION TO THE MALL OF AMERICA. Today is about the MALL OF AMERICA, the largest shopping mall in the United States, featuring an extensive range of retail, restaurants, and entertainment.
MINNEAPOLIS–MITCHELL–PIERRE. Into the rich farmlands of South Dakota, homeland of the great Sioux Indian Nation. Stop in Mitchell to see the CORN PALACE, a remarkable Moorish-style building where the interior and exterior are covered with designs of corn outlined with grasses and grain. Stay overnight in Pierre, the state’s capital.
PIERRE–BADLANDS NATIONAL PARK–MOUNT RUSHMORE–KEYSTONE. First, a drive through Fort Pierre National Grassland to see the prairie as it once was when only buffalo and the Sioux Indians occupied the land. Next is BADLANDS NATIONAL PARK, where 37 million years of wind and water have carved a remarkably colorful sight. Then, head into the Black Hills and behold the granite faces of MOUNT RUSHMORE, a giant monument to four American presidents—Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Roosevelt. (CB)
KEYSTONE–CODY. Head through the rich, mountainous country to Buffalo, where open-range cattle kings made war on the sheep ranchers of the 1880s. Drive past Sheridan, the scene of many fierce battles between the U.S. Cavalry and the Sioux, Cheyenne, and Crow Indians. Then, climb over the Bighorn Mountains en route to the overnight stop in Buffalo Bill’s frontier town of Cody.
CODY–YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK–WEST YELLOWSTONE. Through Shoshone National Forest to splendid YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK. Follow Grand Loop Road to Artist Point with magnificent views of Yellowstone Canyon and the stupendous Lower Falls, nearly twice the height of Niagara. Overnight in West Yellowstone, gateway to the geysers of Yellowstone National Park.
WEST YELLOWSTONE. DAY EXCURSION TO YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK. This morning, return to Yellowstone National Park and visit the bubbling mud paint pots, the reliable “blow” of Old Faithful, Yellowstone’s great geyser, and West Thumb geyser basin. Return to West Yellowstone and explore on your own. (CB)
WEST YELLOWSTONE–GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK–JACKSON. Travel south into magnificent GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK, one of America’s last preserves of wild solitude. Its 13,770-foot-high ridges are crested with snow most of the year. Stroll along the shores of beautiful glacier-fed Jenny Lake before ending the day in the Wild West town of Jackson with its wooden sidewalks and swing-door saloons. The afternoon and evening are free to explore the shops and museums of historic downtown. (CB)
JACKSON–SALT LAKE CITY. Today, drive to Salt Lake City, Utah’s vibrant capital. Set on the edge of Great Salt Lake Desert, this center of the Mormon religion is where Brigham Young declared to his followers, “This is the place.” An included sightseeing tour shows you the capital of Utah, including Temple Square, the tabernacle, and the Beehive House.
SALT LAKE CITY–BRYCE CANYON NATIONAL PARK–CEDAR CITY. Through the sagebrush landscape of southern Utah to BRYCE CANYON NATIONAL PARK with its breathtaking sandstone and limestone cliffs and ever-changing colors. Head west through Dixie National Forest to Cedar City for your overnight. (B)
CEDAR CITY–ZION NATIONAL PARK–GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK. First stop is ZION NATIONAL PARK, a landscape that was carved out by rushing streams over a period of a million years. Through Kaibab National Forest to the less visited North Rim of GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK, where you’ll marvel at the stunning views of the flame-colored walls plunging 4,800 feet into the Colorado River. The evening is free. (CB)
GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK–LAS VEGAS. Head to the unique phenomenon of Las Vegas, where today’s fortune hunters try their luck at the 24-hour gambling tables of the “Strip.” The afternoon is at leisure so you can explore the casinos.
LAS VEGAS. A free day to explore Las Vegas. Your Tour Director can arrange an optional excursion to the Hoover Dam, and will have suggestions for the best shows to see this evening.
LAS VEGAS–CALICO–LOS ANGELES. Into California today with a stop at CALICO GHOST TOWN to relive the wild, tough days when miners struck it rich. Through the Mojave Desert and over the San Gabriel Mountains to Los Angeles.
LOS ANGELES. Start the day with a sightseeing tour of the world’s “Capital of Glamour.” You’ll drive to Hollywood, see the footprints of the stars at the TCL Chinese Theatre, and famous Hollywood Bowl. Then, on to elegant Beverly Hills followed by a drive down Sunset Strip.
LOS ANGELES. The trip ends today with guests departing on individual schedules. Transfers to Los Angeles International Airport are included. You can extend your vacation with extra nights.