18 January 2017
You can see clearly that this imaginative nine day Western Visions tour of America packs in excitement at every turn. From the pulsating cities of Los Angeles and Las Vegas to the natural beauty of Bryce and Zion National Parks and the grandeur of the Grand Canyon, you will see the very best of the West. Beginning and ending in LA, you will drive through some of the most spectacular scenery on Earth and have time to stop along the way to fully appreciate all the great sights.
After your plane touches down at Los Angeles International Airport drive to your hotel in the city. Los Angeles is the entertainment capital of the United States. Home to Hollywood and the famous movie stars, the City of Angles is simply overflowing with culture and happenings. This electric metropolis has many regions with distinct flavours and communities and while staying here you can visit many of them.
Today you leave LA and head for Las Vegas which has something to offer everyone. From the outrageous live shows to the excitement of casinos, the action never stops from morning to night. Stroll down Las Vegas Boulevard, also known as “the strip”, take a trip up to the top of the Stratosphere hotel tower, the tallest building west of the Mississippi River, and enjoy dinner at the Top of the World, or simply admire the view from the observation deck. You can visit any of the premier hotels including Caesars Palace, The Venetian and Paris for luxury shopping and be sure not to miss the nightly fountain show at the Bellagio Hotel.
Leave the excitement of Vegas behind and drive to Zion National Park where you will be greeted by gigantic sandstone monoliths and hear the soft rush of the Virgin River. The Narrows are Zion’s famous slot canyons which are stone crevices formed with colourful stripes caused by years of water and wind erosion. The result is a hiker’s paradise. In the park and along the river there are a variety of trails and paved pathways. There is also a free shuttle system so you can stop at major attractions such as the Emerald Pools, Weeping Rock and Angels Landing. Continue on to Bryce for an overnight stay.
This morning visit Bryce Canyon National Park. Bryce contains “amphitheatres” of colourful eroded rock formations. These spires of rock are called hoodoos and it is their uniqueness that sets Bryce apart from anywhere else. Light reflecting on the hoodoos at different times of day change the scene of the park. Continue on to Lake Powell, a body of deep blue water surrounded by red cliff walls. Lake Powell is home to magnificent Rainbow Bridge, the largest natural bridge in the world.
This morning take a three-hour boat tour to Navajo Canyon, passing the magnificent Glen Canyon Dam. Then leave Lake Powell and drive to the Grand Canyon National Park. The overwhelming size and brilliant colours of the canyon make it one of the natural wonders of the world. The South Rim has an assortment of viewing areas that can be reached by shuttle or car and there are many paved and unpaved walkways along the rim. Visit the Bright Angel Lodge for an excellent vantage point and this historic landmark offers a gallery, restaurant, exhibits and great views.
Time today to explore some more of the Grand Canyon seeing the ever changing colours and the breathtaking views at every turn. There are also ranger-guided tours if you want to learn more about this spectacular place. Later in the afternoon drive on to Laughlin, which is a charming town that is perfect for an overnight stay. Here you can shop, dine and relax in one of many lounges and bars that offer great live entertainment.
Leave Laughlin in the morning and drive back to L.A. Drive along Sunset Strip, shop at the famous Rodeo Drive, and have lunch at Venice Beach, where the sand and surf are secondary to people watching. Later visit Santa Monica Pier, once known as the finish line of the legendary Route 66. The pier was built in 1916 and now features an aquarium, amusement park and the famous Hippodrome building, a mix of California, Byzantine and Moorish architecture that has been featured in many films.
Today you may can make your way to the neighboring city of Anaheim and visit the “Happiest place on earth”, the original Disneyland, home to your favorite characters like Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. Here you will find entertainment for the young and the young at heart. Other options include taking a trolley tour to see the glitz and glamour of Hollywood or a behind the scenes look at movie making at Universal Studios. In the evening, enjoy Universal City Walk, filled with restaurants and nightclubs.
Your wonderful Western Visions tour comes to an end today. Possibly time for some more sightseeing in LA or last minute shopping for souvenirs before you drive back to the airport to catch an onward flight or begin your journey home. This tour makes a great add on to any longer holiday in the States or a perfect trip in its own right.
Standard fr £413pp
Superior fr £520pp
Rates based on twinshare
International flights not included unless otherwise stated