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Tracks of the Deep South

13 Days from$4,170
per person
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You are viewing the 2018 itinerary

Itineraries and pricing may vary by departure year

(Tour code: DSG18)

The soundtrack of Deep South USA

Historic tracks lead us on a rail tour through the heartland of great American music - from Nashville, home of Country Music, to the Blues, Soul and Rock 'n' Roll of Memphis and the jazz of New Orleans. Then enjoy an unforgettable private dinner and performance with a member of the Cash Family.

Highlights
  • Chattanooga's railroads
  • Jack Daniel's Distillery
  • Nashville, Memphis and Tupelo
  • The Country Music Hall of Fame
  • Graceland, 'Home Of the King'
  • Sun Studio and the Stax Museum of American Soul Music
  • New Orleans and an authentic Creole dinner
  • Mississippi steamboat cruise
  • Exclusive concert with member of the Cash family
What’s Included
  • Heritage Rail Excursions
    Amtrak rail travel
  • Selected Porterage
  • Selected Departures Guaranteed

Tracks of the Deep South 2018Tour Details

Print Itinerary
Day 1 Atlanta
Atlanta

Meet in Atlanta

Meet your group and Tour Manager at the HolidayInn & Suites Atlanta Airport North. 

Day 2 Chattanooga
Chattanooga

Atlanta and Chattanooga

A morning guided sightseeing tour explores this fascinating city. Entrance is also included to the Martin Luther King Center and Church which pays homage to the man himself as well as the civil rights movement which he was part of. The tour continues to Margaret Mitchell House, where the author wrote her Pulitzer Prize winning novel, 'Gone with the Wind'. That afternoon, we transfer to Chattanooga, where we stay for two nights at the Doubletree Downtown Chattanooga Hotel.

Day 3 Lookout mountain incline railway
Lookout mountain incline railway

The Tennessee Valley Railway

Today we experience a ride on two of Chattanooga's railways, travelling first on the restored heritage Tennessee Valley Railroad. Our trip on the Tennessee Valley Railroad begins at the Grand Junction Station in Chattanooga, which is a modern replica of the station in Tuscumbia, Alabama. Hauled by either a steam or vintage diesel locomotive, we take the Missionary Ridge route on a 55 minute round trip to East Chattanooga Depot and back.

The journey takes us through one of Tennessee's oldest railroad tunnels, which was constructed in the mid-19th century. We also witness the locomotive turning around using the Tennessee Valley Railroad's turntable at the East Chattanooga Depot and enjoy a guided tour of the maintenance and restoration shop where the railroad's historic locomotives are repaired, repainted and rebuilt.

Later we experience 'America's Most Amazing Mile', named for the tremendous scenery it passes, on a journey on the Lookout Mountain Incline Railway. Built in 1895 to service a hotel at the top of the mountain, part of the track has an incline of 72.7%, giving it the distinction of being the world's steepest passenger railway. In 1911 the steam locomotives were replaced with diesel engines, but apart from that very little has changed on the line since its opening.

Day 4 Jack Daniels Distillery
Jack Daniels Distillery

Lynchburg and Jack Daniel’s Distillery

Our coach takes us through Tennessee to Lynchburg, capital of Moore County. Moore County has been 'dry' since the days of prohibition, which makes its main attraction all the more extraordinary - it is the home of Jack Daniel's Distillery! After a tour of the distillery, and a tasting of some of the produce, we continue to Nashville, staying for two nights at The Sheraton Music City, in easy reach of the honky-tonk bars and live Country music scene. This evening there is an optional excursion to the legendary Grand Ole Opry, one of the oldest and most iconic country music venues in the US.

Day 5 Nashville Country Music Hall Of Fame
Nashville Country Music Hall Of Fame

Nashville

Since the 1940s Nashville has been synonymous with Country Music, with its collection of recording studios on 'Music Row' and the Ryman Auditorium, home of the Grand Ole Opry for three decades. A morning guided tour introduces you to the sights before we visit the Country Music Hall of Fame, the world's largest music museum, for an amazing 'who's who' in the world of Country music.

Today we also enjoy a true highlight of the trip, an exclusive performance by a member of Johnny Cash's family, as part of the Cash Family Experience. Later, we take a private tour of Studio B, a recording studio famous for pioneering the Nashville Sound.

Day 6 Memphis
Memphis

Tupelo and Memphis

Our journey through Tennessee continues to Memphis. En route we stop at Tupelo to visit the birthplace of Elvis Presley. A fascinating insight into the humble beginnings of Elvis, the town features a museum, the Presley family's two-room house and the church building where Elvis' love of Gospel music was formed. Later we arrive in Memphis for three nights at the Doubletree by Hilton Memphis Downtown.

Days 7-8 Graceland
Graceland

Graceland, Sun Studios and Stax

Today introduces the sights of Memphis' extraordinary musical history. We visit Sun Studios, which lays claim to being the birthplace of rock 'n' roll, with a roster featuring Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis and Johnny Cash. By contrast, the Stax Museum of American Soul Music covers another of the city's musical phenomena. Founded in the neighbourhood known as Soulsville USA, Stax was responsible for launching the careers of great soul artists such as Isaac Hayes, Otis Redding and Wilson Pickett. In the afternoon we visit Graceland, Elvis' 14 acre mansion, and view his preserved living quarters, private aircraft and car collections.

Day 8 is free for you to explore Memphis independently. Beale Street's live music is a must as the evening draws in. It is here that Blues from the delta found a home before moving on to influence the world's musical tastes.

Day 9 New Orleans
New Orleans

The City of New Orleans train

This morning we board Amtrak's City of New Orleans service, heading through Mississippi to Louisiana. It is claimed that the Blues spread along this route by rail. The pretty, floral towns of Brookhaven and McComb lead into the exotic Cajun swamps of the Louisiana Bayou. Following our arrival into the city of New Orleans, we transfer to our hotel for three nights, the Hampton Inn Downtown New Orleans.

Days 10-12 New Orleans Steamer
New Orleans Steamer

New Orleans and Houston

This morning's guided tour provides an introduction to this fascinating city. In the afternoon we go a sightseeing cruise along the Mississippi before enjoying a creole dinner at the Tujaques restaurant. Day 11    is spent at leisure. The 'Big Easy' boasts unique architecture, influenced by Spanish, French, Creole and American styles, representative of the cultural melting pot that the city has become. On Day 12, departing from New Orleans, we board our Amtrak service to Houston.

Day 13 Flying home
Flying home

Houston and Return home

We begin our day in Houston with a guided tour of the city's main landmarks, including the Allen's Landing and NASA's Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center. That afternoon you are free to depart and make your own way home today.

Mardi Gras Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras

Mardi Gras

Our February 3rd 2018 a grandstand ticket for the New Orleans Mardi Gras (or 'Fat Tuesday') celebrations is included in the price. As one of the most famous carnival events in the world, Mardi Gras marks the beginning of the feasts of Epiphany and sees the city of New Orleans transformed into a city-wide carnival. Stunning floats and extravagant costumes abound and there is plenty of wonderful food and drink to sample during the celebratory period.

Departure Times

You may check in at the first hotel on your itinerary anytime after 14:00; this is where you will meet your Tour Manager.

What’s included

 

An escorted experience and travel during your tour

  • The services of a professional Tour Manager
  • All rail and coach travel throughout

Comfortable accommodation in your destination

  • 12 nights' hotel accommodation (room only)

 

Exciting excursions and free time to explore

  • Visit to the Country Music Hall of Fame
  • 'Cash Family Experience' concert featuring a member of the Cash family
  • Visit to Sun Studios
  • Scenic journeys on the Lookout Mountain Incline Railway and the Tennessee Valley Railway
  • Guided tour of the Jack Daniel's Distillery
  • Visits to Graceland & Tupelo
  • Mississippi jazz sightseeing cruise
  • Guided tours of Atlanta, New Orleans and Nashville
  • Tour of Houston, including NASA Space Center

Not Included

  • Flights and Airport transfers
What our customers think
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Tracks of the Deep South

The soundtrack of Deep South USA

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