Discover the sparkling California coastline heading north up to Santa Barbara, a beautiful town surrounded by mountains, rolling valleys and miles of gorgeous beach. You'll have some free time to check out the pier or relax on the beach. End your first day sleeping under a blanket of stars.UPDATE: Due to recent storm damage, the Pacific Coast Highway (Hwy 1) is closed in the Big Sur area south of Monterey. Until further notice we will not be visiting McWay Falls, and will instead drive directly from San Luis Obispo area to Yosemite National Park.
Heading east through California's 'gold country', enjoy a scenic drive to everyone's favourite national park, Yosemite. You can either hike or bike through this extraordinary landscape of glacier-carved granite monoliths and spectacular waterfalls. Once inside Yosemite, keep your eyes peeled for Black Bears and coyotes that roam freely. When the sun goes down, their howling often echoes amidst pines and sequoias - now that's not something you hear every day! A couple of nights under canvas in Yosemite definitely captures the spirit of the great outdoors.
Come fog or shine, this city's always awesome! Start with a tour of Haight-Ashbury, a neighbourhood oozing with hippy vibes and plenty of quirky shops and cafes. Of course you can't go all the way to San Francisco without a stroll across the iconic Golden Gate Bridge too. The highlights keep coming with an included tour of Alcatraz (value US$33). Spend your free time checking out San Francisco's most famous areas. Some of our favourites include the sights of Union Square, the sea lions that loiter along Pier 39, Chinatown and Lombard Street. Some streets are a little on the steep side, but you can always catch an iconic cable car to scoot around the city and explore more. To top it all off, set sail on an optional sunset cruise and get a different perspective of the famous bridge and this awesome city.
Take in the stunning scenery as you drive up the Californian Coast to Redwood National Park. Get out and stretch those legs with a hike through Tall Trees Grove and keep an eye out for elk and bear who can be spotted hiding under the canopy of the Redwoods. These trees are the tallest on earth, so be prepared to spend a lot of time looking up! As you explore more of the park you might start to recognise the canyons covered in fern and moss from Steven Spielberg's 'Jurassic Park 2: The Lost World'. After an amazing day exploring Redwood National Park, watch the sun set over the Pacific Ocean on what's virtually your own private beach. Sounds like the perfect day, right?
Call it what you want – ??City of Roses', ??Bridge City', or ??Beervana' - Portland is simply awesome! It's a vibrant city full of quirky cafes and cool hipster folk, so grab yourself a flat white and enjoy some people watching.
Welcome to Seattle! This cool city is home to the iconic Space Needle, so soar to the top for a bird's-eye view - on a clear day you may even be able to see Mount Rainier across the Puget Sound. Visit bustling Pike Place Market where you can see market stallholders 'toss the Pike fish'. Starbucks was founded here, but the city's got plenty of other cool and quirky coffee shops too. Later, check out the bohemian Fremont neighbourhood for cool drinking spots and restaurants, or if it's cocktails and secret bars you're after, make sure to check out Capitol Hill.
Cross the border straight into Canada, headed for your next awesome city. With its stunning combination of mountains and coastline, the city of Vancouver boasts outstanding views. Rent rollerblades or take to two wheels to explore Stanley Park, treat yourself to some moreish maple cookies, then head over to Prospect Point for the best views in town. For a walk on the wild side way up in the tree tops, check out the stunning Capilano Suspension Bridge, 140 metres long and suspended 70 metres above the river. Known for being a city rich in culture, why not head over to Gastown with its award-winning galleries and tons of cafes and restaurants? This is one super cool city and it's going to be hard to pack up and leave!
Head through British Columbia where the scenery will impress you from the word go! In every direction you'll see mirrored lakes, snowy peaks and huge forests of conifer. With the nickname 'Gem of the Rockies', Lake Louise is a real showstopper. The imposing chateau looks on and mountains cluster round the turquoise waters. Hike out to the Plain of Six Glaciers tea house to be rewarded with some truly stunning views and treat yourself to some chocolate cake too! Alternatively, grab a paddle and inspect the lake up close on an optional canoe rental.
Packed full of showstopping trails and incredible wildlife, Banff is Canada's first national park and the crown jewel of the Canadian Rockies. It's no surprise this place is a favourite with locals and tourists alike. If it's a relaxing time you're after, take the scenic tramway up Sulphur Mountain or chill out by one of the picturesque lakes, then opt for a dip in the local hot springs. If you simply can't sit still, there are heaps of trails just waiting for you to explore.
You're back in the USA, and it won't just be Glacier National Park's snow-capped mountains that leave you awestruck. With bear sightings possible and other awesome wildlife in abundance, you're in for a treat. The best way to explore is to lace up your hiking boots and go for a walk. Alpine lakes, sheer peaks and of course the glaciers - all 26 of them - make this a park that'll leave you speechless. Montana is often referred to as 'Big Sky Country', so enjoy a night under its stars. This area sure adds a healthy dose of the wow factor to your road trip!
The scenery just keeps on getting better as you reach Yellowstone National Park. View explosive geysers - including 'Old Faithful' - and colourful waterfalls while exploring the world's first and most famous national park. Large herds of bison and elk roam the park, so have your camera at the ready. If you're lucky you may also catch the ultimate wildlife sighting, as wolves have recently been re-introduced to the park. There is no doubt about it the next couple of days in Yellowstone National Park will be awesome!
Just a short drive from Yellowstone you arrive in the heart of Old West Country, Cody! Embrace the town's cowboy roots, shake a leg and try some two-step as the buckin' bronco rears its massive head! Nothing says Wyoming more than a good dose of rodeo and a Stetson, so if you're in town from June to August why not check out Cody's summer rodeo?
We bet you never thought you'd see the faces of some of America's most loved presidents peering out from the side of a cliff face? Well that's exactly what you can expect to see at Mount Rushmore, in the Black Hills of South Dakota. The sculpture features presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln and it's pretty darn huge with 18 metre high faces, more than 150 metres up. Close by, another rock-carved epic captures another piece of American history. The Crazy Horse Memorial, in memory of the famed Lakota Indian war leader, is an impressive sight not to be missed.
Next up, find yourselves in the excellently named Badlands National Park. It's out of this world – no, not literally, but we imagine this is what it would be like making a moon landing. The bizarre lunar landscape of low slung buttes, chiselled spires and saw tooth ridges are what geology dreams are made of. The rugged beauty draws in people from all over the world and you may even see bison, Bighorn Sheep and prairie dogs.
Some of the greatest things about an American road trip are the quirky roadside attractions you come across along the way, so be sure to say hello to the Jolly Green Giant Statue in Blue Earth. Head out across the great prairies of America's original western frontier and settle down for some shut-eye under canvas.
The 'Windy City' of Chicago is home to some of the greatest blues music in America, as well as being famous for its deep-dish pizza so be sure to treat yourself to a slice... you deserve it! Why not soar up Willis Tower for dizzying views over the city, or for awesome views of the city skyline head down to Lake Michigan. Shopaholics can get their fix trawling the upmarket malls of Magnificent Mile, or for a little culture check out the city's museums. An included 'Bobby's Bike Hike' tour is a fantastic way to get a new perspective on the city, guided by a local.
It's Ohio bound, where you can find out just how cool Cedar Point Amusement Park's roller coasters really are. Millenium Force has been called 'the greatest roller coaster in the world', but you should find out for yourself! After enough thrills and excitement for one day, settle down for the night close by one of the Great Lakes, the beautiful Lake Erie.Please note: Cedar Point in Ohio is open all of June, July and August and on certain days during May, September and October. It may not always be possible to visit Cedar Point Amusement park.
Niagara Falls is three waterfalls all rolled into one, so you can only imagine how epic it'll be to witness this natural wonder with your own two eyes! Get as close as you dare to the booming cascades of water on an included 'Maid of the Mist' boat tour - just be prepared to get wet! Tonight, head back to the falls for an illuminated view under a blanket of stars.
Leaving the roar of the falls behind you travel through New York's Finger Lakes region and the Pocono Mountains en route to the New York area. This tour is not scheduled to spend any time in New York City so make sure you book a few extra nights and explore the sights and sounds of the Big Apple on your own. Splash your cash along Fifth Avenue, hit the top of the Empire State Building, take a selfie with Lady Liberty herself or soak up the trendy, laid-back vibe of Greenwich Village before heading home. Boy, what an adventure!This tour ends at approximately 17:00 hrs. We can book you post tour accommodation at our gateway hotel if required. If you are planning to fly tonight, please do not book a flight that departs before 21:00 hrs.