Ultimate Coast to Coast Road Trip
Our Ultimate Coast to Coast Road Trip is an exciting transcontinental fly drive tour, beginning in New York City and concluding over 2,500 miles later in California.
During your journey, you will encounter some of the must-see destinations and experiences that the USA has to offer; see the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia and feel the spray of Niagara Falls on your face. Visit the Henry Ford Museum in Detroit and climb the Willis Tower in Chicago. Take in the unique spectacle of Mount Rushmore and the stunning scenery of Yellowstone National Park. Visit Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks and Lake Powell before heading towards the bright lights of Las Vegas and glamour of Santa Monica.
- New York
- Washington DC
- Niagara Falls
- Yellowstone National Park
- Grand Canyon
- Las Vegas
- Los Angeles
From Park Avenue to Times Square, from Chinatown to Little Italy, New York offers round the clock excitement. The city is home to many of the top restaurants in the world and is well known for its bars and nightclubs. Get great views from the Empire State Building Observatory as it soars a quarter of a mile above the city’s streets; day or night this is a must see on any trip to the city. You could also take a helicopter ride above the towering skyscrapers, or take a boat ride out to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, which now houses a museum.
Central Park has lots to offer, including roller blading, boating, taking a horse and carriage ride or just having a picnic and watching the world go by. There are also many museums to visit, including the Museum of Modern Art and the American Museum of Natural History. In the evening take in a Broadway show or visit Greenwich Village and the ever-stylish Meatpacking District, with its many street cafes and bars. New York has so much to see and do and has something for everyone. It certainly is the city that never sleeps.
Philadelphia is one of the oldest cities in the USA and remains something of a well-kept secret. Visit the ornate City Hall, Reading Terminal Market, which is a popular European-style marketplace, and the colourful Friendship Gate which marks the entrance to the city’s Chinatown. The Historic Waterfront has charming courtyards, and brick paved pathways leading to the Society Hill area. Penn’s Landing – the waterfront area where you will find the Moshulu, the largest four-masted sailing ship still afloat, which offers superb cuisine. Visit the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, which sits at the top of the steps, made famous by the ‘Rocky’ movies. At the National Constitution Centre, you can walk among life-size statues of the delegates present at the signing of the Constitution in 1787 and take the Presidential Oath of Office.
Welcome to America’s Capital! Washington D.C. is a cosmopolitan city, packed with famous sights and free attractions. It is home to some of the world’s best-known museums and art galleries, including the Smithsonian Institution and International Spy Museum. Watch pandas at the National Zoo, or catch a military band playing an outdoor concert on Capitol Hill. Combine this with the hip new restaurants and bars, vibrant nightlife, live music, theatres, charming neighbourhoods and terrific shopping options and you have the building blocks of a great stay!
Gettysburg is steeped in the history of the Civil War. In 1863, it was the site of the epic Battle of Gettysburg, in which some 50,000 soldiers were killed. It is also, of course, the place where Abraham Lincoln delivered the immortal Gettysburg Address. The town itself is made up of houses and taverns dating back several centuries, but Gettysburg offers more modern travel and leisure activities as well, like wine tastings, orchard tours, shopping and golfing.
Corning is best known as the home of Corning Glassware and the Corning Museum of Glass – the museum details the history of glass and the art of glass making as well as the science behind it. There is also the opportunity to see a live-glass blowing demonstration and take a stroll around the glass gallery attached to the site. The town itself is very quaint and walkable. The Gaffer District is the main downtown area and is full of shopping boutiques and restaurants. The area also offers much in the way of outdoor activities and experiences, including many hiking trails, biking and fishing as well as wineries and breweries.
Today, make your way to Niagara Falls. A highlight of your stay will of course be the Maid of the Mist boat trip into the spray of the waterfalls – a thrilling experience. Also, on the New York side of the Falls is the ‘Cave of the Winds’ experience, a wooden structure that is re-built yearly to hug the side of the falls – each level takes you closer still to the water, until you reach the ‘Hurricane Deck’; get ready for a soaking! There are also opportunities to take a jet boat white-water rafting trip out into the rapids; perfect for the thrill seeking amongst us!
Revitalised and reinvigorated after decades of neglect, Detroit is reclaiming its place as a cultural and tourist capital. Everything in this old Midwestern city seems new again; it has a raw urban energy you won't find anywhere else. They're converting vacant lots into urban farms and abandoned buildings into cafes and museums. The Woodward Avenue theatre district now boasts renovated theatres, the Detroit Tigers have opened their new stadium, Comerica Park and the Henry Ford Museum is a sprawling testament to the spirit of invention that built the city and is refuelling it today. Greektown is now the happening place for food and nightlife. The Motown Museum is also well worth a visit as a low-key tribute to the high-energy sound that defined a city and an era.
Chicago, or the “Windy City”, as it is known, boasts one of the world’s most spectacular skylines and one of its tallest buildings – the 108 story Willis Tower. It is definitely worth visiting the SkyDeck here, which features a glass ledge protruding straight out into the sky and, on a good day, offers views across four states. The city has 29 miles of lakeshore frontage and a huge variety of attractions. Music is a big part of life here, with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the star studded performances of the Lyric Opera of Chicago and the massive jazz and blues scene. Chicago is a shoppers’ paradise; start your shopaholic’s safari on centrally located and elegant Michigan Avenue; the Magnificent Mile houses some 240 stores including Bloomingdales and Tiffany.
Located on the shores of Lake Michigan and at the confluence of the Milwaukee, Menomonee and Kinnickinnic Rivers, Milwaukee is filled with waterfront excitement. Get out on the water on a river cruise, a sailing expedition on Lake Michigan, or explore the three-mile long RiverWalk that winds through the city. This unique thoroughfare is dotted with eye-catching public art and lined with charming restaurants and shopping. And just for fun, a bronze statue of Happy Days’ “Fonzie” makes the perfect thumbs-up photo op on the RiverWalk. Milwaukee is also home to some of the USA’s most well-known breweries – visit the Miller Valley or Pabst Mansion and Brewhouse for a taste of America’s oldest lagers. The Harley Davidson Museum is a ‘must see’ for anyone interested in motorbikes and Milwaukee has a wealth of galleries and museums for everyone.
Rochester, Minnesota is home to the world famous Mayo Clinic, one of the leading medical facilities in the world. Beyond this though, enjoy the vibrancy, beauty, and charm of Rochester, MN when you visit its picturesque parks, renowned historical sites, and dynamic galleries and theatres. Then, stop in for a bite to eat in a friendly atmosphere at one of the many celebrated hot spots for dining and nightlife.
Sioux Falls' best known attraction is the gorgeous Falls Park, which covers 123 acres. An average of 7,400 gallons drop 100 feet over the course of the Falls each second. You can enjoy a meal or treat yourself to an ice-cream at Falls Overlook Café, affording you great views of the Falls whilst you eat. St. Joseph’s Cathedral is also worth a visit alongside SculptureWalk Sioux Falls. Stop by a tourist information centre and ask for the sculpture walk map and bring a pen to check off the sculptures you find as you wander through the downtown area. You can also visit the home and museum of Richard Pettigrew who was the first full time senator of the town. The house is fully preserved how it was upon Pettigrew’s death in 1926.
Rapid City is a great base from which to explore the many interesting landscapes and monuments in the area. Badlands National Park is a treasure trove of fossils dating back 37 million years. There are 14 designated stops along the scenic road which overlook the dramatic landforms. Nearby, Wind Cave National Park is an unusual cave formation which resembles honeycombs. Custer State Park is truly one of the last wild places in America. You can enjoy up-close and personal encounters with the wildlife here along the 18-mile Wildlife Loop Road. Visit the granite "Needles" that dominate the skyline. Mount Rushmore National Memorial is found along another Scenic Byway. On the Byway, the Crazy Horse Memorial is the largest sculptural project in the world. The best time to visit Mount Rushmore is in the evening when the monument is illuminated.
Upon reaching Buffalo, you’ll feel transported to the Old West. Sitting along the Cloud Peak Scenic Byway in the foothills of the Bighorn Mountains, Buffalo is rich in frontier history, allowing visitors to step back in time to the days of cowboys and sheriffs. Have a glass of something in the saloon of the Occidental Hotel, right on Main Street. It’s also only a short drive to Fort Kearney, site of the famous Wagon Box Fight and “Hole in the Wall,” the hideout of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
Yellowstone National Park
Yellowstone National Park contains 300 geysers that account for approximately one-half of the world’s total. The geography of Yellowstone is made up of eight distinct areas. Mammoth Hot Springs hosts Norris Geyser Basin, the hottest, oldest and most dynamic of Yellowstone’s thermal areas. The Old Faithful area is made up of four different basins where 60% of the world’s geysers share a very small space. The Grant Village and Lake areas are both adjacent to Yellowstone Lake, the largest lake at a high elevation in North America. The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River is roughly 20 miles long and varies between 800 and 1,200 feet deep and the falls along the river include Tower Falls, which drops 132-foot. Tower Creek is framed by eroded volcanic pinnacles that were documented by the earliest explorers in the region. There are also many excellent museums and visitor centers throughout the park which will put your experiences into perspective.
As you arrive at Jackson, it becomes immediately obvious why the Grand Tetons, the 40-mile long mountain range that surround it, are a National Park. All three Scenic Drives are a must do: the Teton Park Road, Jenny Lake Scenic Drive, and Signal Mountain Summit Road. We highly recommend taking a Wildlife Expedition, which will take you into the back country of Grand Teton National Park, otherwise inaccessible to traffic. There are also plenty of fly-fishing, skiing and white-water rafting opportunities, depending when you are visiting. Hot air balloon trips are also popular.
Salt Lake City
The Winter Olympics made Salt Lake City a prime travel destination in 2002. Although the athletes have departed, the revitalisation that was done in preparation for the Games is still very much a part of the area, making a visit a thoroughly enjoyable experience. Salt Lake City is the headquarters of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and many major tourist attractions focus on LDS history. Yet with its gorgeous setting between the Wasatch Mountains and the Great Salt Lake, Salt Lake City is also a prime destination for outdoor sports. In winter, skiing is the most popular sport, but during the remainder of the year, you can enjoy some great hiking, mountain biking and climbing just outside the city.
Kanab is 30 minutes on from Zion NP, an hour and 20 minutes from Bryce Canyon NP, 30 minutes from Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park and an hour and a half from Lake Powell and Antelope Canyon. Zion is a true desert paradise; enjoy horseback rides, take a hike along the valley or rent bikes to explore. Bryce Canyon’s stunning landscape is a photographer’s dream, with its crimson-coloured hoodoos, which are spire-shaped rock formations. Lake Powell is a reservoir on the Colorado River, straddling the border between Utah and Arizona and a great destination for taking a boat trip, or indulging in water sports such as water-skiing, Kanab is small-town America – a relaxing base from which to explore the area. Don’t miss the Rocking V Café or Chuckwagon Cookout for real local flavour.
The Grand Canyon is all that you expect it to be. Vast, breathtaking and ever-changing according to the light and weather. Whilst here, you can take a helicopter trip or a small plane flight over the Canyon for further spectacular views. There are also many hiking, biking and mule-riding excursions available to further enhance your experience of the most famous Canyon in the world. National Park Rangers offer a wide variety of interpretive programs including talks to learn about the history and nature of the National Park.
A neon tribute to tinselled affluence, Las Vegas booms 24 hours a day with a heady “get rich quick” atmosphere. The lure of easy money, the whirling wheels and gaming tables, and the numerous plush hotels provide ready entertainment; glitz and escapist fun are supplied in quantity. The MGM Grand has over 5000 rooms and is home to eight restaurants and three showrooms. The New York New York Hotel has its own Statue of Liberty, Park Avenue and Central Park and the Venetian has its own canals that weave through the hotel. As well as the casinos, enjoy theme parks, medieval banquets, musical revues and magic shows.
Los Angeles cannot fail to entice and entertain you. Check out Hollywood Boulevard, with the Hollywood Walk of fame and the Chinese Theatre, cruise the Sunset Strip or journey through the city’s historic, cultural and architectural roots along Wilshire Boulevard. Enjoy classic boardwalk fun on the historic Santa Monica Pier, visit “the Mouse” at Disneyland, the new Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios, window shop on Rodeo Drive, and take in any number of LA’s fabulous museums and attractions.
- 29 nights' accommodation and room tax
- International flights from London (please ask if regional airports are required)
- Fully insured compact car hire (larger vehicles are available
- A detailed and comprehensive travel pack with driving directions and maps
Daily Departures from May to September.