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Route 66 - Small Group Guided Tour
With a maximum group size of just 13 people, you'll feel like you are travelling with friends on this small group guided Route 66 holiday. Travelling as a smaller party allows you to venture further off the tourist trails for a more flexible and intimate Route 66 holiday experience.
During this 14-day Route 66 escorted holiday, you'll visit all the iconic spots and more. Watch the sunrise over the mighty Grand Canyon, view the Mississippi River from Gateway Arch in St. Louis and leave your mark on the cars at Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo. This epic 2,248 mile holiday through eight states is hard to resist and even more of an adventure when you share it with like-minded travellers.
This trip can also be arranged as an independent fly-drive holiday - please call Bon Voyage for details.
Price per person includes:
Flights from the UK to Chicago/home from Los Angeles
13 nights standard accommodation along Route 66, based on twin/double rooms
Private transport in a new custom-designed vehicle with extra large windows, wider seats and WiFi
The services of a professional tour leader throughout your Route 66 adventure
No single room supplements when sharing a room with a fellow group traveller of the same gender.
Holiday highlights include:
Chicago, Springfield Shea's Gas Station Museum, St Louis Gateway Arch
Famous El Rancho hotel, Cadillac Ranch, Hoover Dam
Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, Branson, Amarillo
Oklahoma City, Albuquerque, Santa Monica
Iconic diners including The Snow Cap, Big Texan Steak Ranch, Mid Point Cafe and Ted Drewes
All the quirky Mom & Pop kitsch you could hope for
Please phone Bon Voyage for the most up-to-date
departures for this itinerary
Day 1 : Chicago
Arrive in the 'Windy City' in time for a welcome meeting with your fellow travellers in your hotel at 6pm. Consider extending your time in Chicago and spend a few days exploring this cosmopolitan city prior to your Route 66 adventure. Take a cruise on Lake Michigan, hop on a Mob Tour or enjoy the views from 'The Ledge' at Willis Tower.
Day 2 : Springfield, Illinois
You'll leave early today and travel south along Route 66 to the capital of Illinois, Springfield. En route you'll stop in Pontiac, a town of amazing murals, before pulling into Springfield, where Abraham Lincoln resided when he was President from 1844 to 1861. Springfield is also the birthplace of the famous corndog and has great selection of diners, so be prepared to put on a few pounds here.
Day 3 : St Louis, Missouri
You'll drop into Shea's Gas Station Museum today, one of Route 66's most iconic stops, before heading to St Louis, and the Gateway Arch.
St.Louis was a major port on the Mississippi and the Arch commemorates the settlement of America's West. You'll take a trip to the top of the Arch with views over the river and city. Then it's a real iconic Route 66 treat - an extra thick milk shake at Ted Drewes Drive-In.
Day 4 : Branson, Missouri
Nicknamed 'The Live Entertainment Capital of the USA', in lively Branson you'll discover over 50 dinner theatres, shows and other quirky entertainment options. This is a kitsch, fun town which unleashes a healthy dose of Americana. Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede is a delightfully cheesy but very pleasant way to spend the evening here.
Days 5 - 6 : Oklahoma City. Oklahoma
The Mother Road was born in Oklahoma when Cyrus Avery of Tulsa conceived of the idea of linking Chicago to Los Angeles. And, Oklahoma has more miles of the original highway than any other state.
The state takes it's Route 66 heritage seriously, so get ready for some Route 66 gems. Arcadia’s Round Barn, Catoosa’s Blue Whale, Will Rogers Memorial, Foyil’s Totem Pole Park, the Rock Café and the Cowboy Hall of Fame and Museum. In the evening head to historic Bricktown for live music and cold beer.
Day 7 : Amarillo, Texas
The next state to tick off on your Route 66 adventure is Texas, The Lone Star State. Before your overnight stay in Amarillo, you'll visit the official Route 66 Museum. Make sure you eat lightly today for tonight you'll dine at the famous Big Texan Steak Ranch, home of the 72 ounce steak. If you can consume this enormous hunk of meat in less than an hour, your meal is free. Bon Appetit.
Day 8 : Albuquerque, New Mexico
A must-do on any Route 66 holiday is a stop at the Cadillac Ranch just east of Amarillo. These classic American cars buried nose-down in the earth are a popular shrine to America's love of the open road. Grab a can of spray paint and leave your mark. Next stop is the Midway Cafe, which funnily enough, is the midway point of your Route 66 journey. Before stopping in Albuquerque, you'll enjoy a drive through the Tijeras Canyon and the neon lights of Tucumcari.
Day 9 : Gallup, New Mexico
Continue your Route 66 guided tour through New Mexico along the dusty Rio Puerco Valley to Inspiration Rock to observe ancient Native American Petroglyphs.
You've a treat in store tonight with a stay at the historic El Rancho Hotel, an true embodiment of America's Old West. This was the home to many a movie star from John Wayne to Errol Flynn. Movie buffs will want to dine in the hotel's restaurant this evening where the main courses are named after the stars who have frequented it.
Optional trip to Acoma Indian Reservation and Sky Pueblo is available and can be pre-arranged.
Days 10 - 11 : Grand Canyon, Arizona
Today you'll travel across the stateline into Arizona, The Grand Canyon State. Before visiting the main event, you'll have time in the Petrified Forest National Park and the delightful southwestern town of Winslow.
The Grand Canyon, one of The Wonders of The World, is a sight to behold. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide and reaches depths of up to 5,000 feet. It reflects an inconceivable beauty and majesty that will simply take your breathe away. You'll have plenty of time to explore the park at your own pace. To see the canyon from a different perspective, we recommend that you book a helicopter tour over the canyon. Make sure you're up for sunrise over the canyon too, it's a magical experience.
Days 12 - 13 : Las Vegas
The somewhat odd Route 66 town of Seligman and a Mother Road icon, the Snow Cap Diner, makes for a nice lunch stop en route to Las Vegas. Travelling through the desert, you'll journey over the Hoover Dam and arrive on The Strip early evening just in time for this neon city to come alive. There's no denying that Vegas is totally O.T.T. Take in a show, explore the mega-hotels, relax by the pool or try your luck in the casinos.
Day 14 : Los Angeles, California
It's the last of our eight states today and the end of Route 66 at the pier in Santa Monica, California. Dip your toes in the Pacific Ocean and make a farewell toast with your fellow Route 66 travelling companions. Your adventure doesn't have to end here, perhaps you may decide to extend your stay and spend some time in California or maybe fly over one of the Hawaiian Islands for some relaxation.
Call the USA travel specialists at Bon Voyage to discuss your perfect Route 66 - Small Group Guided Tour.
As I have not been on holiday yet the following comments relate only to setting up the holiday. Monica my Bon Voyage contact could not be more helpful, she has sorted out any queries I have had and is very friendly and efficient.