1st Day: We will be heading west through the Smokies to Jackson, TN for the night.
2nd Day: Have breakfast and depart for Fort Smith, AR. We will be crossing the mighty Mississippi and heading across Arkansas. Upon arrival, we will tour the famous former bordello that now serves as the city’s official Visitors Center. “Miss Laura” will personally greet our group and give a lively tour of this beautiful Victorian mansion that has been restored to its original grandeur. Tonight, Miss Laura’s Players presents “The Medicine Show on Hangin’ Day,” a light-hearted original musical/comedy set in Fort Smith 100 years ago during the days of Belle Starr and Judge Parker, and other infamous local characters. (CB, D)
3rd Day: We depart this morning for Oklahoma City, where we will see the Oklahoma City National Memorial that honors the victims, survivors, rescuers, and all who were affected by the Oklahoma City bombing on April 19, 1995. Continuing across Oklahoma, we will stop in Clinton at the Oklahoma Route 66 Museum. This is the top museum on Mother Road history and lore, including tales of Dust Bowl travels to cross-country family road trips in the 1950’s. Witness the history of Route 66 unfold through decade-specific displays as lodging, restaurants, garages, curio shops and roadside oddities pop up along this iconic strip of highway. Legendary music, vintage autos, and a fantastic Route 66 themed gift shop make this museum a must-see in western Oklahoma. Our home tonight is in Shamrock, TX. (CB)
4th Day: After breakfast, we continue traveling West across the panhandle of Texas into the state of New Mexico, overnighting in Albuquerque. On the way, we will see the world’s only Cadillac Ranch! Ten Cadillacs buried nose-down in a field at the same angle as the Cheops Pyramid. It has been stopping visitors since 1974. (CB)
5th Day: Today we head for the Grand Canyon, crossing the Continental Divide and into Arizona, where we will see the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest. Then it’s on to Flagstaff by way of Humphreys Peak (the tallest mountain in Arizona). Our home for the next two nights will be a Grand Canyon Lodge. The remainder of the evening is free for your enjoyment.
6th Day: The GRAND CANYON...one of the Seven Wonders of the World. This is your day to visit all the look-outs and take pictures on a tram that picks up every 15 minutes, running from one end of the South Rim to the other. You may attend free Ranger Programs and learn more about the nature, science, history, and culture of the Grand Canyon. Or visit an Information Center or Museum, which houses exhibits and provides park information. If you’re really adventurous, try a South Rim Mule Ride. The Canyon Vistas Ride is a 3 hour trip that travels along the canyon rim. The day is free to spend as you wish. (Any admission costs are each individual’s responsibility).
7th Day: We will depart this morning and stop at the Desert View Watchtower. Recognized as a National Historic Landmark, the tower was constructed in 1932. Architect Mary Elizabeth Jane Colter’s design takes its influences from the architecture of the ancestral Puebloan people of the Colorado Plateau. Today, the 70-foot tower contains a gift store and its upper floors serve as observation decks where visitors enjoy magnificent views of the Grand Canyon and the Painted Desert. Our destination today is Page, AZ. Later this afternoon we will enjoy a cruise on beautiful Lake Powell. The Antelope Canyon Tour provides an up-close opportunity to view the narrow, colorful, and sculpted geology of the lower end of Lake Powell. This high-walled Navajo Sandstone side-arm of Lake Powell is famous not only for its coloration, but also for its famous slot canyons. Tour highlights include: Glen Canyon Dam (The second largest concrete arch dam in the United States); Antelope Canyon (View approximately 4 miles of the canyon wall before it narrows); and Navajo Sandstone (View towering Navajo Sandstone geologic formations with stunning red and burnt orange rocks).
8th Day: We depart today for Moab, Utah. We will travel by the Navajo Indian Reservation and Monument Valley on our way to Arches National Park. Arches contains one of the largest concentrations of natural sandstone arches in the world, with numerous other extraordinary geologic features; such as spires, pinnacles, pedestals, and balanced rocks.
9th Day: Departing for Colorado Springs this morning by way of Denver. This is a beautiful drive across Colorado.
10th Day: This morning we will depart for some beautiful Colorado Springs sightseeing. We will visit the Broadmoor Seven Falls in Colorado Springs. Seven Falls is a series of seven cascading waterfalls, reaching a total height of 181 feet. Seven Falls is one of Colorado's most captivating natural wonders. This magnificent series of waterfalls is situated in a 1,250-foot-wall box canyon between the towering Pillars of Hercules. Later this morning we will visit the Garden of the Gods. This National Natural Landmark is located at the base of Pikes Peak. We will enjoy a guided tour and take in all the beauty of this spectacular park. After our guided tour we will enjoy a boxed lunch. After lunch we will head to Colby, KS and our home for the night. Evening is free. (BL)
11th Day: After breakfast, we head across Kansas - the bread basket of the U.S. - on our way to Columbia, MO for the night. (CB)
12th Day: Departing today for St. Louis, Missouri, where we will tour the Gateway Arch. Enjoy a narrated tram ride to the top, to the indoor observation area. Discover magnificent views from the top of the Arch—an iconic monument symbolizing the city’s role as early settlers pioneered westward years ago. See both the history and culture surrounding the city—from 630 feet high in this architectural wonder. Continuing on to the Louisville, KY area after visiting the Arch. Tonight, enjoy a meal at Claudia Sanders Dinner House. In 1964, Colonel Sanders sold Kentucky Fried Chicken and shortly thereafter opened this restaurant, where an air of Southern Hospitality and cooking combined with old fashioned, family style service still remain today. The restaurant was named for the Colonel’s Wife, Claudia, and is sometimes referred to as “The Colonel’s Lady”. (D)
13th Day: What a wonderful tour this has been, and sadly we must say good-bye as we depart for home. Arriving back approximately 6:30 PM. (CB)
Special Notice: $100.00 per person deposit is required to reserve your space. Balance due 30 days prior to the departure date. Cancellation within 30 days prior to departure date will result in payment forfeiture. Trip cancellation insurance is available upon request.
Deluxe motorcoach transportation; (12) nights lodging; (5) continental breakfasts; (1) dinner; (1) boxed lunch; all touring including the Fort Smith Visitor’s Center Victorian Mansion, Oklahoma City National Memorial, Oklahoma Route 66 Museum, Cadillac Ranch, Painted Desert, Petrified Forest, Grand Canyon, Arches National Park, Broadmoor Seven Falls, Garden of the Gods; Lake Powell Boat Tour; Arch in St. Louis; Miss Laura’s Players Show; Dinner at Claudia Sanders Dinner House; and baggage handling.