CROSS COUNTRY CRUISIN'

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This trek offers a perfect balance between the busy cities and quiet National Parks. Start with a visit to the Nation's capital before experiencing the "southern charm" of Memphis and New Orleans. Cross the prairies of Texas and spend the days exploring the National Parks of the southwest. Finish this tour with the excitement of Las Vegas and San Diego before ending in Los Angeles.

Itinerary

Day 1-2, New York Area & Washington DC

Departing from the New York area, travel to the Nation's Capital, Washington DC, for a perfect introduction to the cultural and political history of the United States. Want to know a secret? Go undercover at the International Spy Museum. Timetable a stop at Union Station, make tracks to the zoo, then see where big-hitting political animals shape the nation on an included monument tour. Accommodation: Budget lodging included

Day 3-4, Virginia & Nashville

Next, touch down in the Appalachian Mountain Range and the gorgeous pine-clad foothills. Then off to the centre of American music in Nashville, Tennessee - the shining star of the country music scene. Hit The District - centre of city nightlife - laze in the parks, trawl the malls or learn to line dance; cowboy boots or sequinned denim anyone? Accommodation: Budget lodging included

Day 5-6, Memphis

A short distance away is Memphis, the Birthplace of the Blues. Strolling along Beale Street must be on your checklist to see the influences that Blues and Jazz music has had on America. But top billing goes to Graceland, former home of the King himself, Elvis Presley. Accommodation: Budget lodging included

Day 7-8, New Orleans

Your soundtrack grows jazzier in the Big Easy. Spice up your trip with lipsmacking Cajun and Creole fare, ride a steamboat on the Mississippi River, relax to the sounds of a Jazz or Dixieland band in the French Quarter and join the ongoing party on Bourbon Street. New Orleans has more than just food, drink and music to offer. Join a swamp tour into the alligator habitat of southern Louisiana, to view all sorts of wildlife on the mysterious bayous of Cajun country. Accommodation: Budget lodging included

Day 9-10, Louisiana & Austin, Texas

Head out of the bayou and onto the range, as south turns to west before your very eyes. Welcome to the Lone Star State, otherwise known as the great state of Texas. Austin is the "Live music capital of the world" and home of great BBQ. This city is packed with "Texas sized" excitement and is sure to impress. Accommodation: Budget lodging included

Day 11-12, Lubbock & Carlsbad Caverns National Park

The birthplace for Buddy Holly and the world's largest cotton growing region. This is the best of Texas. Head out of the largest State into New Mexico and Carlsbad Caverns National Park to explore one of the largest cave systems in the World. Gnarled limestone stalagmites like the Witch's Finger reach upwards, while stalactites in the Bell Cord Room hang from the cavern ceilings. Accommodation: Budget lodging included

Day 13-14, Taos & Monument Valley

Venture into the desert with a stop at Taos, where history and south-western spirit is available by the bucket load - it must be all those sandy Pueblo-style buildings that make up what is one of America's oldest towns. We hit the iconic Monument Valley next, used in countless Hollywood scenes from Westerns to 2001: A Space Odyssey and everything in between. If you choose, you can board a jeep and let your Navajo guide show off the huge hunks of red rock and share the fables of the sacred lands. Tonight, experience a stunning sunset overlooking the valley. Accommodation: Budget lodging included

Day 15-16, Grand Canyon National Park

Holy Cow! This is a dead cert on your list of top stops! Pack your boots and don't forget your camera for a sunrise/sunset hike along the rim. For the more ambitious take the long hike down Bright Angel Trail to Plateau Point or choose the "bird's eye" view on a scenic flight. Watching the sinking sun paint it amber, maroon and red, its breathtaking immensity will blow you away. Accommodation: Budget lodging included

Day 17-18, Las Vegas

Back to the modern world with a bang - Las Vegas - the greatest show on earth! Cruise "The Strip" in a super-stretch limo, indulge in an all-you-can eat buffet, take in a show or just watch the amazing crowds, neon signs and attractions that many hotel casinos have to offer. And if that's not enough, take a helicopter flight down The Strip or just gamble the night away in one of the world class casinos. Accommodation: Budget lodging included

Day 19-20, San Diego

SeaWorld or San Diego Zoo? Hold on, is that beach calling? Sure is! Rent bicycles, rollerblades and surfboards at the beach and don your shades and soak up a few final rays. Accommodation: Budget lodging included

Day 21, Los Angeles

It's a crying shame it has to end; at least the Hollywood Walk of Fame will help script your blockbuster ending to this great adventure. Tour ends at approx 17:00 hours in Los Angeles on day 21.

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