Best of the USA Tour—San Fran to San Fran

Map

Route map for Best of the USA Tour—San Fran to San Fran (NUFB)

Day 1 San Francisco

Arrive to our joining hotel at any time. Welcome meeting in the evening.

There's a lot to see and do in San Francisco, and we recommend spending extra time here if you'd like to explore the city; speak to your sales agent to book extra accommodation. Haight-Ashbury, Alcatraz, the Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman's Wharf and the city's famous cable cars await you.

Day 2-3 Yosemite NP (1B,1L,2D)

Depart San Francisco with our CEO pointing out some popular sites on the drive out of town–perhaps you'll catch a glimpse of the stately Golden Gate Bridge, a marvel of engineering and deco design.

Continue on to admire spectacular views of Yosemite National Park's magnificent peaks and granite domes. Take short hikes to majestic waterfalls, clear lakes, beautiful meadows and walk amongst giant sequoias. With a keen eye, you may be lucky enough to spot black bears, deer or coyotes. Hike the many trails Yosemite has to offer and be inspired by this beautiful and amazing landscape. Option to rent bikes in Yosemite Valley.

Approximate Distance: 225 km
Estimated Travel Time: 7 hrs (including stops)

Day 4 Yosemite NP/Bishop (1B,1L,1D)

Marvel at the spectacular views of Yosemite National Park's magnificent peaks and granite domes as you enjoy one of most scenic areas in California. Surrounded by peaks which soar to over 14,000 feet in elevation, Bishop, one of "America's Coolest Mountain Towns" sits directly in the center of an incredible area of natural beauty. Enjoy secluded hot springs where star gazing is amazing.

Note that we intend on using the Tioga Pass, a scenic a route through the Sierra Nevada mountain range that connects Yosemite NP with Bishop. In the spring and autumn seasons, there's a chance that the pass will be closed due to poor weather conditions or even snow. In such a case, we use an alternate route south, and will spend the night in Lake Isabella instead of Bishop. The status of the road is monitored daily, and our travel plan for the area will be confirmed during the trip.

Approximate Distance: 330 km
Estimated Travel Time: 10 hrs

Day 5-6 Death Valley National Park/Las Vegas (1B,1L)

Visit one of the country's most rugged landscapes, the legendary Death Valley, the hottest and driest spot and home to the lowest point in North America.

In the evening, arrive to the city of lights, Las Vegas. Your CEO will introduce you to the famous Vegas Strip on a brief orientation walk, then you're free to explore the "City of Lights", Las Vegas, as you please. Try your hand with gambling at giant-mega casinos or visit one of the numerous shows offered on the strip. Optional VIP limo ride in Vegas.

Full day to explore Las Vegas. Walk the strip and try your luck at the tables or slot machines. Or spend the day shopping, dining or poolside.

For our nights in Las Vegas, we stay close to the action in a hotel either at the end of or just a few blocks off the Strip.

Approximate Distance: 590 km
Estimated Travel Time: 10 hrs (including stops)

Day 7-8 Grand Canyon NP (1B,2L,2D)

Considered among nature's most spectacular offerings, the Grand Canyon provides spectacular opportunities for you to explore. Wander along a trail and feel the sunshine and wind on your face as you admire awe-inspiring views. Sit and watch the changing play of light and shadows. With numerous viewpoints, the Grand Canyon will never look the same! In the afternoon enjoy a bird's eye view of the Grand Canyon with an optional helicopter flight or watch the most spectacular IMAX Adventure of all, the Grand Canyon Movie. Return to your campsite and enjoy a BBQ around the campfire to recapture the experiences from this memorable day!

Note: If you have pre booked the Grand Canyon Helicopter Ride you will enjoy your 45-50min ride over the canyon on either Day 7 or 8, this will be determined by your CEO.

Approximate Distance: 475 km
Estimated Travel Time: 6 hrs (including stops)

Day 9 Monument Valley (1B,1L)

Discover one of the most majestic places on earth: Monument Valley. Magnificent colors, miles of mesas, buttes and pinnacles make Monument Valley a truly wondrous experience. Learn about the Navajo culture that has been passed on through generations in order to keep the sacred traditions, beliefs and ceremonies alive. Take an optional jeep tour led by a Navajo guide through Monument Valley and be inspired by a night under the stars as you camp in this magnificent atmosphere. See the sun rise from a perspective very few ever experience!

Approximate Distance: 290 km
Estimated Travel Time: 5 hrs (including stops)

Day 10 Mesa Verde NP/Durango (1B,1L,1D)

Drive to Mesa Verde National Park which offers a spectacular look into the lives of the Ancestral Pueblo-ans. Take a guided hike through history as you explore the cliff dwellings of Mesa Verde, some of the most notable and best preserved in North America.

Approximate Distance to Durango: 315 km
Estimated Travel Time: 7 hrs (including stops in Mesa Verde National Park)

Day 11 Santa Fe (1B,1L)

Continue your journey back in time and explore one of America's oldest and most beautiful cities, Santa Fe. Take a stroll downtown and visit art galeries, or enjoy some world famous roasted green chilies.

Approximate Distance: 470 km
Estimated Travel Time: 6 hrs (including stops)

Day 12 Roswell/Carlsbad (1B,1D)

On the night of July 2nd in 1947 something (or someone) crashed into the desert outside of Roswell, New Mexico. Was it a balloon, or really extra-terrestrial life? Find out what all the hype is about as we pass through this funky town.

Then visit Carlsbad Caverns, one of the oldest and most famous cave systems in the world. Explore the cave on a guided tour and be fascinated by the largest underground chambers and countless formations. In the evening witness the stunning spectacle as nearly 400,000 Mexican free-tail bats exit Carlsbad Cavern.

Approximate Distance: 470 km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (including stops)

Day 13 San Antonio (1B,1L,1D)

Cross into the state of Texas, birthplace of Tex-Mex food, 10-gallon hats, and Western movies. Continue to our campsite in San Antonio for the evening. One of the US's largest cities, San Antonio is vibrant and full of culture. Famous due of its proximity to the Alamo, the city holds its own in terms of attractions and experiences available.

Approximate Distance: 744 km
Estimated Travel Time: 10 hrs (including stops)

Day 14 The Alamo/Houston (1B,1L,1D)

Visit historic San Antonio, deep in the heart of Texas. Discover the battle of Alamo in the 18th century while you walk amongst the largest concentration of missions remaining in North America. Continue your journey back in time on the San Antonio River Walk, winding along the San Antonio River. Continue on to Houston in the afternoon.

Approximate Distance to Houston: 375 km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (including stops at the Alamo)

Day 15-16 New Orleans (1B)

Crank up the jazz as you drive into the home of Mardi Gras. You CEO will point out a few things on the drive in, then get out and experience the city at its best. Party in the French Quarter till the early hours, dance to great jazz bands and try out delicious Creole food. Enjoy a last dinner our with the group before it's time to say goodbye.

For our two nights in New Orleans, we stay close to the action in a hotel in the city centre (multi-share accommodation).

Approximate Distance to New Orleans: 535 km
Estimated Travel Time: 7 hrs (including stops)

Day 17 Memphis (1L)

Hear the beat in Memphis, Tennessee! Explore the birthplace of Rock 'n' Roll, Home of Blues and the starting point of soul. Music Legends including Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash and B.B.King made their marks on Memphis. Optional activities include visiting the National Civil Rights Museum (located where the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr took place in 1968) or visitng the Rock & Soul Museum. In the evening stroll one of America's most famous streets: Beale Street with it's live entertainment!

Approximate Distance: 640 km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (including stops)

Day 18 Memphis/Nashville (1B,1L,1D)

In the morning walk in the footsteps of the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll at Elvis Presley’s home, Graceland (optional). See how the legend lived and discover videos, pictures, stage costumes and much more. If Graceland is not for you, enjoy the time to explore more of Memphis on your own. Travel to Nashville in time to check out the nightlife and visit a real country cowboy bar.

Approximate Distance: 380 km
Estimated Travel Time: 5 hrs (including stops)

Day 19 Appalachia (1B,1L,1D)

Experience America's favorite drive through the Appalachian Mountains. See remains of the settlements along the journey, learn about their history as we take our time exploring this fabulous drive. The mountains are a perfect place to relax and enjoy the fresh, clean air and see the true beauty of North America. Optional short hikes on the many trails throughout the park.

Approximate Distance: 575 km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (including stops)

Day 20 Shenandoah NP/Washington DC (1B,1L,1D)

Continuing on, we pass through Shenandoah National Park, a truly beautiful, historic national treasure. Standing on top of the peaks of Shenandoah National Park, gazing across the silent mountains, it's hard to believe we are just a short distance away from Washington DC.

Approximate Distance: 480 km
Estimated Travel Time: 7 hrs (including stops)

Day 21 Washington DC (1B)

In the morning take a moment of silence as you gaze into the eternal flame of John F Kennedy's grave at the Arlington Cemetery and pay respect to the many other fallen soldiers around you.

Today is all about the capital of the United States. There is so much to see and do in Washington DC that you can't see it all in one day. Take your time as you spend a full day exploring this fascinating city. Tour the national monuments and memorials including the White House, Washington Monument, Reflecting Pool and the Lincoln Memorial. Visit the National Mall that includes 15 museums such as the Air and Space Museum and the National Museum of Natural History.

Day 22 New York City (1B,1L)

Today we travel to NYC. Dive into the hustle and bustle of the Big Apple. Opt to visit Times Square, stroll Central Park or check out Greenwich Village.

For our night in NYC, we stay close to the action in a hostel in Manhattan close to the subway line.

Please note that some of your fellow travellers may be finishing their tour here. Other travellers may be joining the tour today in New York.

Approximate Distance to NYC: 375 km
Estimated Travel Time to NYC: 6 hrs (including stops)

Day 23 New York/Newburgh (1D)

Spend the last hours in New York City on a brief orientation with your CEO before driving to Newburgh, New York. Enjoy a night with the group around the campfire.

Approximate Distance: 112 km
Estimated Travel Time: 3 hrs (including stops)

Day 24 Finger Lakes (1B,1L,1D)

Enjoy a day out in nature as you take in the natural beauty of the Finger Lakes region. Discover one of the highest waterfalls east of the Rocky Mountains, Taughannock Falls, dropping 215 foot! Explore this beautiful area on foot or just relax by the lake. Optional canoeing (All the optional activities have to be done in the morning and please note there is limited time).

Approximate Distance: 375 km
Estimated Travel Time: 6 hrs (including stops)

Day 25 Niagara Falls (1B,1L,1D)

An exciting adventure awaits you in Niagara Falls that will last a lifetime. Feel the rushing waters of the falls by taking the famous "Maid of the Mist Boat Tour". Optional, dive into a world of discovery at the Cave of the Winds and get soaked! Stay until darkness settles over the falls and witness when the Falls are illuminated in a rainbow of color!

Approximate Distance: 190 km
Estimated Travel Time: 4 hrs (including stops)

Day 26 Cleveland/Sandusky (1B,1L,1D)

Leave the Falls and continue towards Cleveland, opt to dive into the history of Rock 'n' Roll at the Rock 'n' Roll Music Hall of Fame in before travelling to Sandusky for the night.

Approximate Distance to Sandusky: 430 km
Estimated Travel Time: 6 hrs (including a stop in Cleveland)

Day 27-28 Chicago (1B)

One thing is for sure, you'll never be bored in Chicago. Enjoy your first afternoon in Chi-Town with a brief orientation with your CEO, then explore the many attractions Chicago has to offer. Opt to check out the famous Willis Tower (formerly knows as Sears Tower), relax at the Millennium Park, enjoy dazzling music and stroll the boardwalk of the Navy Pier. In the evening get together with the group for a fun night out in Chicago.

For our two nights in Chicago, we stay close to the action in a simple hotel in the city center.

Approximate Distance: 470 km
Estimated Travel Time: 7 hrs (including stops)

Day 29 Winona (1D)

Stop in Milwaukee and take a tour through America's oldest major brewing company: Millers! Explore the history and brewing process. Before you leave don't forget to taste, what is to be said, the favorite beer by American's! Later visit Madison, the capitol of the US state of Wisconsin. Pass by the capitol itself and enjoy downtown Madison with its unique shopping and entertainment district. Continue to our campground located along the bank of the Mississippi River!

Approximate Distance to Winona: 535 km
Estimated Travel Time: 9 hrs (including stops in Milwaukee and Madison)

Day 30 Sioux Falls/Kennebec (1B,1L,1D)

Leaving the "cities" behind we cross native American Sioux terrain and America's original western frontier, the Great Prairie! Take a break in Sioux Falls. Drive past Garretson, famous for Devil's Gulch, a footbridge that crosses the "Mini-Canyon" where Jesse James jumped to prevent being captured.

Approximate Distance to Kennebec: 710 km
Estimated Travel Time: 9 hrs (including stops in Sioux Falls)

Day 31 Badlands NP (1B,1L,1D)

Before we continue our short journey to Badlands National Park, stop at the Original South Dakota 1880's Town for an optional visit and envision life on the prairie. Admire the many props that were used in Kevin Costner's famous movie "Dances with Wolves". In the early afternoon explore the spectacular, bizarre and moon-like landscape at Badlands National Park. The Lakota gave this its name, "mako sica," meaning "land bad." Discover the park on short hiking trails and enjoy the feeling of true isolation, where you can look for miles and see no sign of civilization. We spend the night camping while witnessing an incredible sunset or sunrise over the Badlands!

Approximate Distance: 185 km
Estimated Travel Time: 5 hrs (including stops)

Day 32-33 Custer (2B,2L,1D)

It all started in the 1930's with free ice-water for thirsty tourists coming from the east that made "Wall" such a famous place to visit. Discover Wall Drug, an American roadside wonder before we reach the famous Black Hills in the heart of South Dakota! This historic area is filled with American history. Black Hills are known to be one of the best places to discover the legend of the old west. Next we take the scenic route to Custer State Park, named after the (in)famous General George Armstrong Custer. Custer State Park is home to the world's largest free-roaming bison herds (about 1,500). Explore this fascinating terrain on short hikes.

In the morning of the second day in the area, visit Mount Rushmore National Memorial, one of Americas most inspiring symbols of democracy and freedom. Be amazed at the impressive granite faces, each head as tall as a six-story building, of four of the most influential presidents of the United States including George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln. For lunch visit the City of Gold– Keystone– once a gold mining boom town in the 1870's. Keystone was also the adult home of Carrie Ingalls of “Little House on the Prairie” fame. In the evening visit spectacular Crazy Horse Memorial. "My fellow chiefs and I would like the white man to know the red man has great heroes, too." These were the words of Chief Standing Bear convincing sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski in 1939 to create a Memorial for the Lakota people.

Approximate Distance to Custer: 250 km
Estimated Travel Time: 6 hrs (including stops in the state park)

Day 34 Deadwood/Devil's Tower (1B,1D)

Visit historical Deadwood and take a self-guided walking tour into the past of the Wild West. Be a part of the famous shoot out at the Old Style Saloon #10 as you witness the shooting of Wild Bill. Then enter the fabulous Midnight Star, Kevin Costner's Casino and try your luck at one of the slot machines. On our way to Devils Tower we take the most scenic highway in the Black Hills, Spearfish Canyon. Enjoy spectacular scenery that was the location for several scenes in the movie epic, “Dances With Wolves.” In the evening arrive at America's first national monument, the Devils Tower! It rises over 1200 feet into the air!

Approximate Distance to Devil's Tower: 215 km
Estimated Travel Time: 5 hrs (including stops in Deadwood)

Day 35 Cody (1B,1L,1D)

With crystal-clear lakes, alpine meadows and glacial carved valleys, the Bighorn National Forest is one of the most scenic drives in Wyoming towards Cody, "the rodeo capital of the world"! The town is named after "Buffalo Bill Cody" and has long been a symbol of the old American West. Optional visit to Buffalo Bill Historical Center to discover the real story of the old west. In the evening optional experience of an authentic rodeo (seasonal).

Approximate Distance: 500 km
Estimated Travel Time: 7 hrs (including stops)

Day 36-37 Yellowstone NP (2B,2L,2D)

Discover the wonders of Yellowstone, the world's first National Park! Yellowstone is beyond special. Geysers, waterfalls, wildlife and scenic beauty are around every corner for you to explore. In fact, Yellowstone National Park is a super volcano with the world’s largest active geyser field, boasting more than 10,000 geysers. The Park is also home to more wild animals than almost anywhere else in the U.S., including roaming bison, gray wolves, elk, black bears and of course the famous grizzly bear!

Travel to the Lamar Valley in Yellowstone and explore the Northern Loop which features beautiful scenery, exciting wildlife and spectacular hydrothermal features. Admire Mammoth Hot Springs, Norris Geyser Basin and the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone!

On the second day, more highlights await you as the South Loop goes through some of the most famous landmarks of Yellowstone, including Old Faithful and Lake Village.

Approximate Distance: 320 km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (including stops)

Day 38 Grand Teton NP/Jackson (1B,1L)

Drive to Grand Teton National Park and view more than twelve peaks at elevation greater than 12.000 feet! Stop at beautiful Jenny Lake and take an optional boat ride across the lake to discover Hidden Falls and Inspiration Point. Grand Teton National Park highlights are numerous and each offers a better understanding of this natural phenomenon.

In the late afternoon we reach Jackson, where we marvel at the town square’s elk antler arches. The area offers unique mix of boutique and country and western shopping opportunities. Wildlife watching is easy here; elk, deer, and many other small mammals can be found throughout the valley. In the evening step back in time and enjoy a night out with a true Wild Western atmosphere at the One Million Dollar Bar, known world wide for its western dancing and live entertainment!

Approximate Distance to Jackson: 230 km
Estimated Travel Time: 6 hrs (including stops in Grand Teton NP)

Day 39 Salt Lake City (1B,1L,1D)

Optional guided wildlife and whitewater rafting trip down the snake river in Jackson. Leave Yellowstone National Park behind as we continue to Salt Lake City. Orientation tour of Salt Lake City including a visit to Temple Square for views of the world's largest Mormon Temple.

Approximate Distance: 440 km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (including stops)

Day 40 Tonopah (1B)

One of the best ways to to experience Nevada is to travel on the "Loneliest Road in America", a fascinating scenic and historic area through a land seemingly untouched by man. In the evening experience Tonopah's night sky, considered among the best in the country for stargazing.

After the long drive to Tonopah trade in the camping gear in favor of a night in a hotel.

Approximate Distance: 656 km
Estimated Travel Time: 9 hrs (including stops)

Day 41-42 Yosemite NP (1B,2L,2D)

Marvel at the spectacular views of Yosemite National Park's magnificent peaks and granite domes as you enjoy one of most scenic drives in California: Tioga Pass! Take short hikes to majestic waterfalls, clear lakes, beautiful meadows and walk amongst giant sequoias. With a keen eye, you may be lucky enough to spot black bears, deer or coyotes.

On the second day, enjoy a free day to explore Yosemite National Park. Hike the many trails Yosemite has to offer and be inspired by this beautiful and amazing landscape. Opt to rent a bicycle in Yosemite Valley.

Approximate Distance: 385 km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (including stops)

Day 43 San Francisco (1B)

Welcome back to San Francisco. Check out the sites you didn't visit the first time around and enjoy the laid back vibe of this West Coast City. Go back in time and take an optional cable car ride over the steep hills or rent bikes and explore the city on wheels. In the evening enjoy an optional sunset sail.

For our final night of the tour in San Francisco, we stay close to the action in a hotel in the city centre.

Approximate Distance: 225 km
Estimated Travel Time: 6 hrs (including stops)

Day 44 San Francisco

Depart at any time.