America's Golden West
12 nights. May 2023 - November 2023. From £2694.00.
WHERE STORIES BEGIN - SAVE UP TO 15% ON ALL 2023/24 AIR HOLIDAYS - BOOK BY 28 FEBRUARY
Enjoy a classic introduction to the USA, taking in California, Las Vegas and the awe-inspiring Grand Canyon. Combine the charm and personality of San Francisco, the lovely City by the Bay, with the movie-land glamour of LA and Hollywood, the show-time sparkle Las Vegas, and the awesome spectacle of the Grand Canyon. Take a scenic journey along California's wild and beautiful Pacific coast to explore sun-kissed towns and cities, including laid-back south Californian San Diego, and enjoy an irresistible holiday full of unforgettable, must-see highlights – especially for those visiting the West Coast for the first time.
What's Included12 nights' room-only accommodation at hotels in San Francisco (3 nights), Pismo Beach (1), Los Angeles (3), Laughlin (2) and Las Vegas (3), plus one night on the aircraft
Return flights to San Francisco (returning from Los Angeles)
Comfortable, air-conditioned coach travel and transfers throughout
Fully escorted by a friendly, experienced tour manager
Holiday HighlightsSee the sights of San Francisco
Visit Hollywood – the movie capital of the world
Three nights in non-stop, 24-hour Las Vegas
Three nights in glittering Los Angeles
A full-day visit to sun-kissed San Diego
Call at Steinbeck’s Monterey and exquisite Carmel-by-the-Sea
Journey south along the Pacific Coast Highway
A full-day visit to the Grand Canyon, one of the most breath-taking sights on Earth
PLEASE NOTE: Price is per person and based on two people sharing a twin/double room. Single room supplements and upgrades are not included.
Day 1Fly to San Francisco, and transfer to your hotel for the next three nights.
Day 2Take this morning's optional guided tour of the city's major landmarks, and see Union Square and stylish Nob Hill, before crossing the famously photogenic Golden Gate Bridge to beautiful Bayside artists' town of Sausalito. Take the Bay Ferry back to the city, and enjoy wonderful views of the infamous prison island, Alcatraz, en route. This evening, why not head for colourful Chinatown, or to the bustle of Fisherman’s Wharf shops, bars and restaurants?
Day 3This morning, you're free to explore. Perhaps head to Golden Gate Park, or the Hippy heartland of Haight Ashbury. Alternatively, take the "little cable car" down to the bustle of Union Square and enjoy some retail therapy in nearby Market Street.
Day 4Journey south, today, towards the fishing town of Monterey and exquisite Carmel-by-the-Sea, linked by stunning 17-Mile Drive. Enjoy more of the Pacific coast as you spend the night in Pismo Beach, a classic Central Californian coastal resort.
Day 5Continuing through breath-taking coastal scenery, we'll make a stop in palm-fringed Santa Barbara, a trendy city with Spanish colonial heritage and a wealth of trendy boutiques to explore. We'll then continue to Los Angeles and coastal Santa Monica, with its boardwalk and promenade, to spend three nights in the LA suburb of Buena Park.
Day 6Rest and relax, or join a tour to the millionaires’ playground of Palm Springs, once home of the late Bob Hope and still a haunt of a host of Hollywood stars. Journey to the heights above the town on the world’s longest revolving cable car, and enjoy shopping in the desert-city’s shops and boutiques.
Day 7Discover the laid-back, sun-kissed, Southern California city of San Diego on today's full-day excursion. Highlights include the historic Santa Fe Railroad Depot and the Gaslamp District. Across the Bay Bridge, Coronado Island is home to the Hotel del Coronado, where Edward VIII first met Mrs Simpson and Marilyn Monroe filmed 'Some Like it Hot'. Return to Buena Park for a final night.
Day 8Cross the desert and travel to Laughlin, for a two-night stay in this resort-town on the banks of the Colorado River. Nicknamed "Vegas in Miniature" the resort has a boardwalk, casinos, restaurants and bars.
Day 9One of the tour's most unforgettable days awaits today, as you travel into the desert to the edge of the Grand Canyon, perhaps nature’s most startling wonder. We'll stop on the South Rim to take in the astonishing views across this immense chasm, formed over millennia by the Colorado River that still flows along the Canyon floor a mile below. Take an optional helicopter flight for yet more stupendous views, before returning to Laughlin for a second night.
Day 10Today's journey takes you to Las Vegas, for a three-night stay in the World's Capital of Entertainment. Spend your first evening soaking up the electrifying atmosphere of this extraordinary, man-made, 24-hour entertainment oasis. See the spectacular hotels, glittering casinos and sparkling show lounges – home to some of the biggest names in show business.
Day 11Today you're free to explore. There’s simply so much to see and do in this amazing place! Check out the gaming rooms, vast shopping malls, diverse entertainments and endless dining opportunities of the famously gargantuan mega-resorts of the Strip and Downtown. And, tonight, enjoy an optional dinner and entertainment from the stars of the nostalgic The Rat Pack is Back show.
Day 12Relax by the pool, arrange to be pampered in a spa, or simply shop till you drop. This evening, don’t miss an incredible opportunity to see Vegas by night on our optional Vegas Nights helicopter flight over the Strip, and perhaps complete your stay by taking in a show in one of the famous lounges.
Day 13Returning to Los Angeles, we'll enjoy a brief tour of the star-studded streets of Hollywood. Visit Mann's Chinese Theatre and chart the history of the city's film industry along the Hollywood Walk of Fame, before continuing to the airport for your overnight flight home.
Day 14Arrive back in the UK, this morning, at the end of a wonderful Californian holiday. Back to top
Passports and visasWhen travelling to the USA, British citizens require passports with an integrated chip (shown on the front by a small rectangular symbol beneath the word PASSPORT), valid beyond the return date from the USA. Visas are not normally required for entry, but visitors must apply for an ESTA online with US Immigration at least 72 hours before departure at www.cbp.gov/esta. The current charge is $21 for British Citizens. British subjects and anyone who has a criminal record or has ever been arrested should consult the US Embassy as a visa may be required. Note too that if you have visited Cuba, North Korea, Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Somalia or Yemen since March 2011, or have dual nationality with any of these countries, you do require a US visa and cannot travel on the Visa Waiver Programme.
Foreign Office travel adviceVisit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice to find out the latest Foreign And Commonwealth Office travel advice for your holiday destination, as well as information about passports and visas.
Hotel transfer timesThe transfer time from the airport to your hotel is approximately 45 minutes.
SmokingSmoking is not permitted on any coach forming part of your holiday; regular stops will be made though for your comfort en route. The majority of hotels in North America are non-smoking throughout including in all bedrooms. In general smoking outside is acceptable, but do look out for signs prohibiting this close to public entrances or bus stops. In Las Vegas smoking is still usually permitted on casino floors and in some public areas.
TippingGratuities are a way of life in North America, and it is generally accepted that they form part of a person's earnings. The customary gratuity for a coach driver or Tour Manager is about $5 per person per day. It is normal to tip 15-20 per cent of the bill for a taxi or in a restaurant, and to leave a dollar or so per drink in a bar.
On your flightAll outbound flights depart and arrive on the same day. All return flights leave in the evening and land in the UK the next day. On-board meals will usually include lunch and a snack on outward flights, and dinner and breakfast on flight home. Soft drinks are complimentary, but some airlines will charge for alcoholic drinks.
Casino hotels in Las Vegas and LaughlinLocal laws stipulate that that there must be at least one person aged 21 or over occupying each room booked. Casino floors cannot be entered by under 21s unless they are accompanied by an adult aged over 21. Casino hotels usually still permit smoking on the casino floor and in some public areas. It is not usual for tea and coffee making facilities to be provided in hotel rooms in Las Vegas and Laughlin.
Luggage allowanceYou are permitted to take one suitcase per person on the aircraft, which should not exceed 23kg.
Helicopter flightsSightseeing flights by helicopter are weight controlled and balanced. Please contact us if you wish to book a helicopter flight and your bodyweight exceeds 250lb. (In such cases, a seat may have to be left empty, and some companies may charge a premium.)
Special requirementsIf you have notified us of any special requirements, please check that they have been noted and acknowledged. This is especially important with any dietary needs you may have.
Disabled accessThe majority of our tours involve a certain amount of walking, including a short walk from the coach stop to the town, attraction or venue you're visiting. If you are bringing a wheelchair, please let us know at the time of booking so that appropriate arrangements can be made.
Itinerary changesOccasionally, for operational reasons, we may have to change the order of the excursions on your holiday. The final day-by-day itinerary will be confirmed on your Final Travel Documents, which you will receive approximately three weeks prior to your departure.
Palm Springs Aerial Tramway Closure - September and October departuresThe Palm Springs Aerial Tramway will be closed for annual maintenance in September and early October. As a result, we have withdrawn the Palm Springs and Aerial Tramway optional excursion for some September and October tour departures. We will be replacing this optional excursion with an included full-day excursion to Santa Monica and Hollywood at no additional cost. This excursion will replace the visits to Santa Monica on Day Five and Hollywood on Day 13, giving you longer to enjoy these iconic destinations.
Changes to your hotelsShould circumstances require, we reserve the right to accommodate you in alternative hotels, of a similar standard, nearby. Full details of your hotels will be sent with your Final Travel Documents.
Hotel roomsStandard hotel rooms in North America will contain one or two double- or queen-sized beds, and it is not possible to add extra beds to the room. Parties consisting of more than two travellers, but who have only booked one room, will be expected to make use of the two beds provided. If this is a concern, you may wish to consider booking more than one room for your group.
Terms and conditionsTerms and Conditions: 15% discount applies to specific holidays and tours only. All other holidays and tours will have a 10% discount applied. The Where Stories Begin offer applies to new bookings only booked between 26 December 2022 and 28 February 2023 inclusive. The Offer does not apply to holidays with late availability pricing and excludes, Ocean Cruise, River Cruise, Andre Rieu events, Lapland and Wimbledon. This offer cannot be combined or used in conjunction with any other discount, promotion or concession. When booking a holiday as described above, prices shown will automatically have the 15% or 10% applied. The discount applies to your final holiday price (excluding holiday insurance) at the time of booking. The Offer is subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time. Back to top