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WESTERN FAMILY DISCOVERY

12 days departing SAN FRANCISCO Jun-Aug from £1170

USA West | Camping

 

A true American adventure for the whole family. Enjoy camping under the stars in the western National Parks and explore the Navajo Indian's Monument Valley on this two week holiday! Granite peaks sparkle above evergreen forests in Yosemite Valley, swift rivers carve winding canyons in Zion, mysterious hoodoos cast shadows over Bryce, and the earth opens up at the indescribable Grand Canyon. Let your leader take care of the details as you experience these powerful lands, shaped and formed by the forces of nature.

 

Prices are land only, let us know if you require a flight inclusive quote.

Price of tour vary depending on date of departure.

If you require further information please fill in the Query form below, also detailing the dates you would like to depart.

Trip Departure Time

As this tour departs at 0730 we recommend that you book pre-tour accommodation. Please request hotel details at the time of booking.

 

Day 1: San Francisco to Yosemite National Park

Before leaving San Francisco you enjoy a brief orientation tour around the city including a close-up view of the iconic Golden Gate Bridge. Completed in 1937, this iconic suspension bridge stretches for 2.7 km (1.7 miles) and is probably the most photographed bridge in the world. After departing San Francisco you head east through California's historic gold country and set up camp at the scenic Yosemite National Park region - your 'home' for the next three nights. Accommodation: Camping with meals included

 

Day 2-3: Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park sits nestled in the Sierra Nevada Mountain range of northern California. Here green forest meets granite walls measuring several thousand feet in height. Rock climbers come from all over the world to scale the rocks whilst hikers get to walk to some of the largest waterfalls in the world. After a visit to see the amazing giant sequoia trees, Yosemite Valley beckons. Here you may cycle, take a dip in the Merced River or wander the meadows. Hike the Mist Trail, arguably one of the most outstanding day hikes from Yosemite Valley. The Mist Trail has some superb views as you walk across picturesque bridges up towards Vernal Falls where the spray from the falls will cool you down on a hot summer's day and create rainbows along the trail. Continue walking and you reach another beautiful waterfall, Nevada Falls and return via the John Muir Trail for perfect afternoon views and if you're lucky you may even spot black bears and coyotes that sometimes roam the surrounding areas. Accommodation: Camping with meals included

 

Day 4: Great Basin Desert

Leaving Yosemite's towering sequoias behind, you make your way from west to east traversing the 10,000 feet Tioga Pass over the Sierra Nevada Mountains. You'll travel past the eerie shores of Mono Lake, before journeying down the Extra-terrestrial Highway and stopping at the Little A'Le' Inn. You'll cover some great distances today, but it will be worth it as you witness some fascinating and contrasting scenery on your road trip. Accommodation: Hotel included with meals paid locally

 

Day 5: Zion National Park

The next destination is Zion National Park, named by the early Mormon settlers of Utah who thought of it as their 'promised land'. Some of the best hiking in this desert terrain of southwest USA can be found here in and around the fertile Virgin River Gorge. With an early arrival today and two nights here, you will have plenty of time to explore after setting up camp. Accommodation: Camping with meals included

 

Day 6: Zion National Park

You have a full day to further explore the delights of Zion National Park. Hire a bike or visit the ghost town where "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" was filmed. Walk up from the valley floor to Emerald Pools (always a hit with the kids!) or take to the water for an optional tubing trip on the Virgin River, a refreshing way to see awesome views of the red canyon walls above. For the more adventurous, there is the challenging option to ascend 2500 feet to experience unbeatable 360 degree panoramic views from the top of Angels Landing. If weather conditions permit, you may choose to hike deep into the Zion Narrows. In The Narrows, dry feet are not an option as you are actually hiking through the Virgin River in between towering walls, and as the day heats up, the cool water and shadows of the canyon can be very pleasant indeed. Accommodation: Camping with meals included

 

Day 7: Bryce Canyon & Kodachrome Basin State Park

Leaving Zion National Park you climb in elevation and traverse a high plateau to Bryce Canyon National Park. Bryce Canyon is a fascinating natural amphitheatre of pink, orange and white sandstone spires, known locally as 'hoodoos'. There are a variety of scenic overlooks and trails that range from easy to moderate in difficulty. The Navajo Trail enables you to hike right in amongst these unique rock formations. Some of you may prefer to hike on the Queen's Garden Trail or remain on the rim and photograph the ever-changing shadows and hues as the sun makes its way across the wide-open sky. Transfer to the campsite at Kodachrome Basin State Park, this campsite, was aptly named after a National Geographic Society exhibition came to the park and were amazed by the changing colours of the sandstone chimney's, creating a beautiful spectacle as the sun crossed the sky. This quiet campsite, will allow you to experience true desert life, with all the facilities of a modern campsite. Accommodation: Camping with meals included

 

Day 8: Lake Powell

Located on the border of Utah and Arizona and created by the construction of the Glen Canyon Dam on the Colorado River, Lake Powell has a shoreline that stretches longer than the west coast of the USA! Many say that Glen Canyon was even more spectacular than the Grand Canyon before the dam was built and now the lake is a haven for water sports or just relaxing in one of the many sandstone coves. The kids will absolutely love it here and you will have a great day of family fin in the sun before spending an evening camped under a blanket of stars. Accommodation: Camping with meals included

 

Day 9: Monument Valley

On the road again, and your next stop is at one of the most photographed places on the Colorado River, Horseshoe Bend and believe us, it is nothing short of impressive. Run in the same tracks as Forrest Gump on the iconic stretch of road en route to Monument Valley. Discover the hidden secrets of this tribal land and learn more about the Native American culture and way of life on your included Navajo guided back roads tour. This iconic landscape will have you thinking that you have stepped right into a Western movie set and with tonight's overnight stay in a traditional mud Hogan, you'll never forget your time here. Accommodation: Camping with meals included

 

Day 10-11: Grand Canyon National Park

Your family will never forget the moment they lay eyes on one of the world's greatest natural wonders. Take a scenic helicopter flight or a nature walk along the rim for some spectacular views. Did you know that only 5% of visitors to the famous canyon ever venture inside? Why not join the elite with a walk down to Ooh Aah Point or Plateau Point for incredible views looking both up and down. After watching a glorious sunset make sure you head over to the Grand Canyon IMAX Theatre for an incredible audio-visual experience and learn all about how the canyon was discovered and how the area has developed. Accommodation: Camping with meals included

 

Day 12: Grand Canyon to Las Vegas

After visiting so many of nature's creations, you return to some surreal manmade ones. For a slice of real Americana you'll travel along an original section of Route 66 stopping at the quirky town of Seligman. Try an ice cream from the classic Snow Cap roadside diner before stopping for a view of the Hoover Dam and then continue on to the neon city of Las Vegas. If you are staying on for a few days after the tour see the illuminated city come alive at dusk, catch a show and make sure you see the famous Bellagio fountain erupt. For an epic experience why not fly over the Las Vegas Strip at night in a helicopter. An apt ending to this unforgettable family tour. This tour ends at our gateway hotel at approximately 17:00 hrs. We can book you post-tour accommodation at our gateway hotel if required. If you are planning to take fly tonight, please do not book a flight that departs before 21:00 hrs.

Included Highlights

'Family friendly' attractions and optional activities

Two full days in Yosemite National Park

Explore Bryce Canyon's mysterious hoodoos, overnight in Kodachrome Basin State Park

Swimming at Lake Powell

Navajo guided backroads tour of Monument Valley

Stunning sunrise or sunset at Grand Canyon

City tour of San Francisco including walk across Golden Gate Bridge

Drive the Extra-terrestrial Highway

Cruise the Las Vegas Strip

Overnight traditional Hogan stay

Iconic view of the Colorado River at Horseshoe Bend

Visit Seligman on Route 66

View of the Hoover Dam

Tour Facts & Features

Accommodation:  9 nights camping with equipment (except sleeping bag), 1 motel + 1 Navajo Hogan stay.

Transport:  All transportation by private vehicle

Meals:  All meals whilst camping included

Guided:  Services of a professional tour leader

Group size:  Maximum 13

Age range:  8+ (10% Child discount 8-16 years)

Wifi:  Free wi-fi available in your vehicle (Max 5 users)

Optional Activities (paid locally)

National Park hikes US$FREE

Grand Canyon helicopter flight US$274

Grand Canyon IMAX theater US$15

Bike rental in Yosemite US$12-$32

Swimming at Lake Powell US$FREE

Float trip on the Merced River in Yosemite US$30

Western horseback riding at Bryce US$40-$80

River tubing in Zion US$15

A GBP£150 / US$260 deposit per person is required to book

Full payment is due 8 weeks before the tour departure

Travel Insurance

Before you join your Grand American Adventures tour you MUST be covered by insurance that includes adequate coverage for baggage, medical expenses and the cost of repatriation.

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