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Highlights of America's West Coast

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4.5 stars(2 reviews)
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Experience the highlights of America’s Golden Coast

You are viewing the 2022 itinerary. Select your departure year
20212022
12 days From £2,595 per person
Operated by our sister company Great Rail Journeys

2022 Tour code: WES22

About the tour

Explore the most captivating destinations on America's West Coast on a holiday that takes us from bohemian San Francisco to iconic Los Angeles by way of the sights and sounds of fabulous Las Vegas and the incredible Grand Canyon.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 - London and San Francisco

We fly from London Heathrow to San Francisco, our base for the next two nights. After checking into our hotel, there's some free time for you to settle in or start sightseeing.

Day 2 - San Francisco

Day 2 includes a half-day city tour that takes us to the Golden Gate Bridge, spanning a mile over the Pacific Ocean, where we see the outstanding views across the bay, and Fisherman's Wharf, home to a unique colony of sea lions. With more free time, you might like to visit the nearby island of Alcatraz, a notorious former prison, or the impressively steep Lombardy Street.

Day 3 - Yosemite National Park

We journey by rail from Oakland, travelling along the San Joaquin route through California's Central Valley. Arriving at Merced, we transfer by coach into incredible Yosemite National Park. Here, we enjoy a tour of the dramatic valley floor with a local expert who takes us to Half Dome, standing 4,000 feet above the eastern part of the valley, as well as the world-famous El Capitan and thundering Bridalveil Falls, which sends water cascading down a 617-feet drop.

Day 4 - Las Vegas

From the natural beauty of Yosemite, we head to the glamorous and glittering sights of Las Vegas. Taking the train from Bakersfield, we head across the eerily beautiful Mojave Desert, past derelict ghost towns and atmospheric villages. The buildings and lights of Las Vegas soon appear on the horizon, our hedonistic base for two nights.

Day 5 - Las Vegas

On Day 5, you are free to discover Las Vegas for yourself. With no end of entertainment, Vegas is a favourite city for tourists, with an incredible selection of resorts, casinos, and shows to enjoy as well as fantastic spas and restaurants at many of the vibrantly themed hotels.

Day 6 - The Hoover Dam

We continue by coach to Arizona. On our way to Flagstaff, we stop off at the Hoover Dam. This masterpiece of engineering was built during the Great Depression of 1936 as an attempt to control floods and produce hydroelectric power. It is now one of the most visited attractions in the United States and provides enough electricity to serve 1.3 million people across the states of Arizona, Nevada and California. Joining the legendary Route 66, we stop off in Kingman for a short break before checking into our hotel in Flagstaff for the night.

Day 7 - The Grand Canyon

Today is an undoubted highlight of our holiday, as we visit the Grand Canyon. We board the heritage Grand Canyon Railway, travelling in fully-restored vintage-style carriages as we journey to the South Rim of one of the world's most breathtaking natural wonders. From our incredible viewpoint, it's possible to see across all the peaks and valleys of this incredible canyon, forged by the powerful Colorado River over millions of years. Leaving the Grand Canyon behind, we make our way by coach to Lake Havasu for the night. This city is home to an unusual attraction; just a short walk from our hotel you'll find a Georgian-era bridge that once spanned the River Thames but was relocated to Arizona in the 1960s.

Day 8 - Los Angeles

We arrive in glamorous Los Angeles this morning, where we have a half-day tour. We visit the famous Hollywood Boulevard, home to the Hollywood Walk of Fame, as well as the TCL Chinese Theatre, where the Oscars are held each year. The rest of your day is free to explore. You could enjoy browsing the upmarket boutiques, bars, restaurants and clubs on Sunset Strip or stroll Rodeo Drive, home to some exclusive shops such as Tiffany's, Chanel and Versace. You may prefer to visit famous Venice Beach Boardwalk or Santa Monica Pier or head to the Griffith Observatory for a sighting of the renowned Hollywood sign. For a real taste of the entertainment industry's impact on the city, make your way to Universal Studios and learn all about the magic behind the movies.

Day 9 - Monterey

We board Amtrak's Coast Starlight service, admiring the wild views as our train hugs the shoreline along the Pacific Coast Highway. We enjoy the sights of the mesmerising Salinas Valley as well as the Santa Lucia and Diablo mountain ranges en route to Salinas, where we disembark for a coach transfer to Monterey, our home for tonight.

Day 10 - Monterey

On Day 10 you are free to explore the dramatic scenery of northern California.

Day 11 - San Francisco and London

Returning to San Francisco by coach, we head to the airport for our overnight flight to London Heathrow.

Day 12 - London

We land back in the UK on Day 12.

Additional information

Departure times

Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We will write to you around 10 weeks before your departure date with the precise meeting times for your tour group.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.

Hotels

Little America Hotel, Flagstaff

Little America Hotel, Flagstaff

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Park MGM Hotel, Las Vegas

Park MGM Hotel, Las Vegas

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Casa Munras Garden Hotel & Spa

Casa Munras Garden Hotel & Spa, Monterey

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Le Meridien Hotel, San Francisco

Le Meridien Hotel, San Francisco

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Grand Canyon Railway Hotel, Williams

Grand Canyon Railway Hotel, Williams

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Trains

Amtrak
Coast Starlight
Grand Canyon Railroad
Southwest Chief

Enhance your holiday

Upgrades

Flight upgrades
UK rail connections
London hotels

Reviews

4.5 stars4.5 / 5 · 2 reviews

  1. 5 stars
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  5. 1 star
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Mr N Edwards

4 stars

Submitted 26 Oct 2019

Whilst we did and saw a lot on the tour, we always seemed to be under time pressure. This was the only slightly negative aspect of an otherwise thoroughly enjoyable tour.

Collected by Rail Discoveries

Mr S Vercammen

5 stars

Submitted 17 Oct 2019

Hectic holiday but crammed a lot in. Excellent tour manager in Carol Woods. Los Angeles was all about films and studios. Unless you like this kind of thing it was boring. Drop this tour of LA and have two days in Monteray instead. The rest of the trip was amazing.

Collected by Rail Discoveries

Highlights of America's West Coast

Experience the highlights of America’s Golden Coast

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