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Grand Tour of Arizona, Las Vegas and The Golden West

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(11 reviews)
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Discover the iconic sights of America's west coast

14 days Sold out

2020 Tour code: VGG20

About the tour

Awe-inspiring scenery at the Grand Canyon and Yosemite National Park contrasts with the glamour of Las Vegas on this vacation. Discover the scenery of the Golden State, enjoy scenic railroad journeys and visit Hollywood for an unforgettable experience.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary

Days 1-2 - To Los Angeles

Meet the rest of your group and Tour Manager at the Courtyard by Burbank Hotel in Burbank. On Day 2, we enjoy a tour of Los Angeles, an iconic American city, taking in Hollywood and the Chinese Mann Theater, which plays host to the annual Oscars ceremony. After some time for lunch, we transfer to the Burbank Studios for a short guided tour, ahead of an evening at leisure.

Los Angeles
Day 3 - The Coast Starlight to Monterey

This morning we travel on board the iconic Coast Starlight for a daytime journey along the stunning Pacific Coast shoreline. We reach the Pacific Coast at Ventura, at which point the Coast Starlight begins to head north, hugging the coastline and following the Pacific Coast Highway.

Relax in the sightseer lounge and enjoy spectacular views through floor-toceiling windows of vast stretches of pristine beaches as the train hugs the rugged coast north of Santa Barbara. Entering the Salinas Valley we pass the Santa Lucia and Diablo mountain ranges en route to Salinas, from where we make a short coach transfer to Monterey for two nights at the Casa Munras Hotel & Spa.

Coast Starlight
Day 4 - Carmel and Big Sur to San Francisco

Our coach collects us this morning as we head to Carmel, where Clint Eastwood was once mayor, a charming town that has attracted artists for decades. On our way, we explore the wonderful Californian coastline, including the exclusive residences of 17 Mile Drive and the attractive waterfront of Cannery Row.

Big Sur
Days 5-6 - San Francisco

We head to San Francisco today, taking the beautiful Pacific Highway and enjoying the gorgeous coast on our way. Your evening is at leisure to settle in.

We enjoy a sightseeing tour on Day 6, visiting some of the cosmopolitan city's most famous sights, including the Golden Gate Bridge and popular Fisherman's Wharf. This afternoon we have some time at leisure. You may like to board a ferry at Pier 33 and cross San Francisco Bay to the infamous island of Alcatraz, which once held the gangster Al Capone.

Alcatraz
Day 7 - Through California to Yosemite and Turlock

This morning we depart from Oakland by train on the San Joaquin route through California's Central Valley, bordered on the west by coastal mountain ranges and on the east by Yosemite National Park.

At Turlock we transfer by coach into Yosemite proper for a tour of the Valley Floor, taking in spectacular views of Half Dome at the eastern end of Yosemite Valley, which peaks at 4,000 feet, the 3,000 foot El Capitan and the thundering Bridalveil Falls. We spend tonight in the Hampton Inn Turlock.

Yosemite National Park
Days 8-9 - To Bakersfield and Las Vegas

We rejoin the San Joaquin line today as we travel to Bakersfield. From here we continue by coach across the Mojave Desert, passing small, isolated villages and abandoned ghost towns. Eventually, the tall buildings and bright lights of Las Vegas appear on the horizon. You are at leisure in Las Vegas on Day 9.

Las Vegas
Days 10-11 - Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, and Monument Valley

Located in Utah, Zion National Park is a spectacular sight for those who travel through it, which we do this afternoon. The intense, cliff like mountains rise completely vertically from a verdant valley floor, through which a gorgeous blue river flows.

On the morning of Day 11, our first destination is Bryce Canyon. Far less well known than the world-famous Grand Canyon, but no less spectacular, Bryce Canyon is an incredible selection of enormous natural amphitheatres and 'hoodoos', thin spires of umber-coloured rocks. After some free time to explore and perhaps enjoy lunch, we head on to Monument Valley, passing Glen Canyon Dam and Lake Powell on our way. Instantly recognisable for being the setting for countless cowboy films in the 'Golden Age of Westerns' era, there is time to take photos and admire the scenery before heading to our hotel for the night.

Zion National Park
Days 12-13 - To Williams and the Grand Canyon

After breakfast this morning, we drive to the railroad town of Williams, where we spend the night at the Grand Canyon Railroad Hotel. Our journey takes us along the incredible Monument Valley loop drive, where you can spot many sites made famous by old Western movies.

On Day 13, we travel by rail to the incredible Grand Canyon on board the Grand Canyon Railroad. We journey in vintage carriages hauled by historic locomotives to see one of the world's most awe inspiring sights, the Grand Canyon. We arrive at the South Rim, the Canyon's main viewpoint and an ideal base to experience the dramatic vistas. We return to Williams on the Grand Canyon Railroad, and our evening is at leisure.

The Grand Canyon
Day 14 - The monuments and parks of Arizona and home

We begin our day by heading to Sedona, by way of Oak Creek Canyon. This is a truly lovely drive, as the warm colors of the mountains mix with the verdant green of the forests that cover them. We visit Montezuma Castle National Monument, a fascinating structure built into the cliffside by the Sinagua people between 1100 and 1425 AD. We continue to Camp Verde State Historical Park to enjoy lunch. From here, we head to Phoenix.

Later this afternoon, your tour concludes and you are free to make your way to the airport for your flight home.

Montezuma Castle National Monument

Additional information

Recommended Airports

For this tour, we recommend you arrive into Bob Hope Airport (BUR), which is approximately 1.5 miles from your first hotel. Our recommended departure airport is Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX), which is situated approximately 166 miles away from your final hotel.

Airport waiting room
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.

Hotels

MGM Park Hotel

MGM Park Hotel, Las Vegas

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Courtyard by Marriott Burbank Hotel

Courtyard by Marriott Burbank Hotel, Los Angeles

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Casa Munras Hotel & Spa

Casa Munras Hotel & Spa, Monterey

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Hampton Inn Kayenta Monument Valley

Hampton Inn Kayenta Monument Valley, Monument Valley

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Le Meridien Hotel

Le Meridien Hotel, San Francisco

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La Quinta Hotel Zion Park

La Quinta Hotel Zion Park, Springdale

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Hampton Inn Turlock

Hampton Inn Turlock, Turlock

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Grand Canyon Railroad Hotel, Williams

Grand Canyon Railroad Hotel, Williams

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Trains

Amtrak Trains
Grand Canyon Railroad

Reviews

100% of travelers would recommend this tour

Based on 11 verified reviews

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Mr F Reader

Submitted Oct 24, 2018

A very well-planned vacation taking in all the must-see sites yet allowing time for our own activities. An enjoyable group of people, good weather, and an excellent tour manager!

Mr R Lister

Submitted Oct 21, 2018

A very comprehensive itinerary covering lots of different experience Would have liked some meals included particularly breakfast as it was often difficult to plan or predict when and where you would be able to eat and we ended up doing a lot of snacking

Mrs C Foxwell

Submitted Sep 30, 2018

Every experience during the vacation exceeded expectations

Mr E Mason

Submitted Nov 03, 2017

Fabulous and so well organised. Every day was great and we like that there is thought given to including enough free time in each place. We like Great Rail Journeys very much having done two this year! We had Peter as our Tour Manager and he looked after us all brilliantly! He certainly made all the travel very smooth and easy. Thanks go to him. Great area to enjoy. Thoroughly recommended.

Anonymous

Submitted Nov 03, 2017

Excellent throughout and great tour manager

Mr D Spooner

Submitted Oct 22, 2017

Thought the tour was well put together . Our tour manager was outstanding .

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