Day 1 and 2
Arrive in Chicago
Land in Chicago and make your way independently to your hotel. Meet your Tour Director in the evening.
The next morning you will start your tour of the city’s highlights including Navy Pier, the Magnificent Mile and Lake Shore Drive. See the towering skyscrapers including Willis Tower, which held its name as the world’s tallest buildings for over 25 years before the One World Trade Center surpassed it in 2014. How about an optional detour with admission to Willis Tower Observation deck? Ascend to the sky as you receive panoramic views of The Windy City. The rest of the day is at your leisure.
Overnight: Best Western Grant Park/ Inn of Chicago
Next, you’ll travel through the Midwest farm country and see the fields of corn, wheat and dairy farms as you cross the mammoth Mississippi River and travel into the state of Iowa. Overnight in Sioux Falls.
Overnight: Comfort Suites, Bed and Breakfast
Journeying towards Badlands National Park, home to bison, antelopes and buffalos, see the incredibly colourful rock formations. Continuing on to the Black Hills, sacred to the Plains Indians and home to the famous Mount Rushmore. Spend an evening at leisure.
Overnight: Baymont by Wyndham Keystone Near Mt Rushmore, Bed and Breakfast
Leaving Rapid City, you travel towards Cody, Wyoming with its twelve mountain ranges, entwined with deserts and luscious grasslands. Cody was founded by Colonel William F. "Buffalo Bill" Cody who was impressed by the development potentials that he started a town in the 1890s and has grown into the city it is today. If overnight in Cody is not possible due to weather or adverse road conditions in Yellowstone, overnight will be in Billings/ Livingstone, Montana.
Overnight: Buffalo Bill Village/ Holiday Inn Cody
Drive past the Wyoming’s mountains as you explore the magnificent Yellowstone, America’s first national park. Enjoy an in-depth sightseeing tour including wildlife, geysers, waterfalls and canyons. Memorable highlights will include Yellowstone Lake, Old Faithful, Hayden Valley and Yellowstone Canyon’s impressive waterfalls.
Overnight: Gray Wolf Inn/ Clubhouse Inn, Bed and Breakfast
Salt Lake City
Venture through Grand Teton National Park (weather permitting) as you see it’s towering mountain peaks at over 13,000 ft. Visit the Snake River Overlook for some stunning mountain views before arriving in Salt Lake City, Utah. See the State Capital Building and visit the famed Temple Square and Tabernacle before arriving at your hotel. How about an optional stunning dinner with panoramic views at Rooftop Restaurant to end the evening?
Overnight: Little America Hotel Salt Lake City
Bryce Canyon National Park
Continue onwards towards the breath-taking Bryce Canyon National Park as your guided tour will take you through the multi-coloured sandstone spires and famous hoodoos. This evening, experience stargazing like no other as you survey the brilliant night sky for its constellations.
Overnight: Bryce View Lodge
Depart Bryce Canyon this morning as you travel to the stunning Lake Powell with its glittering blue waters and red rock canyon walls. A man-made lake produced by the damming of Colorado River. Then visit the colossal Grand Canyon National Park – one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Stop at the East Rim to truly experience the magnificent structures of the plunging gorges, extinct volcanoes and below the rim, the meandering Colorado River.
Overnight: Days Hotel Flagstaff, Bed and Breakfast
As you leave Flagstaff you will travel on to Las Vegas, the glitzy “Entertainment Capital of the World”. En-route you’ll stop by Seligman, a town built along the famous Route 66, where you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a town built sixty years ago, the characteristics will remind you of the Disney Pixar film “Cars”. Get the photo opportunity at the “Welcome to Las Vegas” as you enter the exciting city. Enjoy the evening at your leisure. How about taking to the strip and embarking on a night time tour? Another fantastic option is seeing one of Las Vegas’ famous shows with an accompanying dinner or how about taking to the nights sky as you get an aerial view of the city in an exhilarating helicopter ride?
Overnight: Luxor Las Vegas
Day 11 and 12
Before traveling to Los Angeles you’ll see the Mojave Desert with the unique Joshua trees scattered over the mountain landscape. Arriving in Los Angeles you will start a tour throughout the City of Angels including Beverly Hills, Sunset Boulevard and Hollywood before reaching your hotel.
Today, we suggest an optional full-day tour exploring the world’s largest movie studio and theme park - Universal Studio. A joint attraction with an opportunity for behind the scenes tours of the Hollywood blockbusters. Travelling with thrill-seekers? Enjoy the excitement of Universal’s hair-raising Jurassic Park ride and Return of the Mummy. Or explore downtown LA as you see it’s many museums.
Overnight: Crowne Plaza LAX
Leave Los Angeles in the morning and travel north through one of California’s favourite holiday destinations, Santa Barbara. With its idyllic white sandy beaches and gorgeous palm tree lined walk ways no wonder the locals flock here for some R&R! Before you leave, you’ll see the iconic “Baywatch” lifeguard tower. Continue north to the Danish-style town of Solvang with its many wineries.
Overnight: Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites Santa Maria
Depart for San Francisco
Today we travel to the gorgeous coastal town of Carmel. Enjoy perusing the shops and galleries of this famous artists’ colony. Travelling north towards Monterey, you’ll be able to see Old Fisherman’s Wharf, stroll the Pier to Cannery Row brought to fame by John Steinbeck’s novel. As you carry on your journey north, you’ll pass by Santa Clara en-route to San Francisco. Your tour ends as you arrive at the hotel. Before your flight home take an optional Bay Cruise to see the famous Golden Gate Bridge and take in the impressive skyline. Or how about taking one of a kind trip to see the enormous redwood trees that can grow upwards of 367ft! Be guided through the impressive park and on your way back you’ll visit the gorgeous town of Sausalito which sits right on the water.
Depart to San Francisco airport for your flight home.
Optional post-tour hotel
Want to explore San Francisco a bit more? How about a post night stay after your tour with us? Have the day at leisure as you explore the “City of the Bay”. Climb those hills on the iconic cable cars, visit the famous Fisherman’s Wharf or head to Union Square for a spot of last-minute shopping.
Hotel Carlton - €117pp or similar accommodation
Or why not extend your stay and perhaps add a Hawaii Extension?