Get picked up at home and whisked off to your departure point (within 50 miles).
Meals included: 6 breakfasts,
Fly to Chicago where you will transfer to your hotel for two nights.
Known as the 'Windy City', Chicago is home to the legend of Al Capone and countless jazz and blues clubs. This morning's sightseeing takes you to the heart of this ebullient metropolis on the banks of Lake Michigan. See the sign that is the official start of Historic Route 66. This afternoon there is free time to further explore Chicago, perhaps by climbing the soaring Willis Tower (formerly known as the Sears Tower), browsing the store-filled Magnificent Mile or strolling along the waterside in Grant Park?
Housed in an old fire station, the Route 66 Hall of Fame & Museum in Pontiac hosts a wealth of Route 66 memorabilia; signposts to your upcoming tour, including nostalgic photos and postcards from the 'Mother Road’ heyday. Today cross the farmlands of Illinois to Springfield, resting place of Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States. Spend time exploring the state of the art Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. The evening is free to enjoy the International Route 66 Festival, where the streets come alive with the rumble of engines from hot cars, cool tracks and vintage motorcycles. There is free live entertainment featuring R & B, Motown and everyone's favourite tunes of the 50s and 60s. There are also various exhibitors, vendors, and dozens of speciality food stalls.
This morning cross the mighty Mississippi River and continue to St Louis, located at the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers, and dubbed the 'Gateway to the West'. On the morning orientation tour, visit the towering Gateway Arch and ride to the top of the 630-foot-tall iconic structure for panoramic views of the city and river. The remainder of your day is at leisure.
Travel through Missouri, home to the Meramec Caverns, the hideout of notorious bank robber Jesse James, to Branson, one of America's biggest music centres. This evening, why not join our optional dinner and show?
Today, cross the cowboy country of Kansas into Oklahoma, once known as Indian Territory. Visit the Will Rogers Memorial Museum with its artefacts from the famous cowboy-movie star's life. Continue to Arcadia on historic Route 66 and visit Pops landmark diner and gas station. Later, arrive in Oklahoma City.
This morning, enjoy a sightseeing visit of Oklahoma City the state capital of Oklahoma. Continue to Elk City for a visit of the National Route 66 Museum that shows the 8 states that Route 66 passed through from Illinois all the way to California. Travel through rolling hill country into Texas arriving in Amarillo.
Leaving Amarillo, watch for the Cadillac Ranch sculpture, crafted from real Cadillacs as you travel from New Mexico into Texas and reach Adrian, Route 66's halfway point. After passing through the old Indian town of Tucumcari, continue to Santa Rosa with its iconic Route 66 motels and drive-in grills, and call in at the quirky Route 66 Auto Museum with its 1950's fin-tailed vintage cars. Cross into New Mexico to visit Russell's Car Museum featuring classic card and memorabilia from the hey day of Route 66. Later, continue to Albuquerque and visit Central Avenue, where many of the original Route 66 buildings and businesses still stand. Enjoy free time in this original Spanish town with its fine parish church and Hispanic-style plaza.
Today there is time to further explore this atmospheric city, so why not explore the plethora of shops, galleries and restaurants in the city's Old Town, visit the renowned Albuquerque Museum of Art and History, or seize the chance to ride the aerial tramway up nearby Sandia Peak Mountain and witness spine-tingling views of the desert floor, forests and canyons below.
Leave Albuquerque for Acoma Sky City, a 1000 year-old town on a towering sandstone rock. As the oldest continuously inhabited village in the US, it's still populated by the Acoma Pueblo Indians. Cross the Continental Divide to Gallup, the setting for many famous Hollywood films before passing Holbrook's Wigwam Village. On to Winslow, with time to explore its historic downtown district, home to 'the corner' immortalised by The Eagles in 'Take it Easy'. Continue to Flagstaff for an overnight stay.
One of the highlights of today's journey is a visit to the spectacular Grand Canyon. Leaving Route 66, you'll have time to walk the canyon rim, soaking up the staggering vistas and watching the changing lights on the towering walls of what is one of the natural wonders of the world. To truly experience the Canyon's magnificence, join our optional helicopter 'flightseeing' tour and thrill at the aerial panoramas. Overnight in Williams.
Returning to Route 66, you'll pass through historic Williams, viewing the legendary neon signs of its 1940s 'Motel Row'. Next on to Seligman, home to the rebirth of 66, before deviating from the Route for two nights in Las Vegas.
A day at your leisure to explore this eye-popping, glittering desert city, dubbed 'Sin City' for its myriad of casinos, themed hotels and lavish shows. Revel in the neon-gilded Las Vegas strip or ride the world's highest roller coaster. Don't miss the Fremont Street Experience, where a glass atrium enclosing five city blocks comes alive with dazzling sounds and lights. Alternatively, choose from our optional excursions including an exhilarating raft ride along the Colorado River's dramatic Black Canyon, or an exciting helicopter ride over the Grand Canyon.
This morning traverse desert landscapes and the San Bernardino Mountains to Barstow. After stopping at the Route 66 Mother Road Museum, head for Santa Monica, the end of Route 66. Continue on to Los Angeles for two nights.
Savour the exciting 'City of Angels' on our morning tour of glamorous Beverly Hills, the Sunset Strip, Hollywood and more legendary sights. The rest of the day is yours to shop for souvenirs, explore further or relax by the pool.
Transfer to Los Angeles airport for your flight to the UK, or extend your stay in Los Angeles.
Once the route of pioneers' wagons, America's historic and colourful Route 66 beckons on this mesmerising road trip. Starting in Chicago, you'll experience rugged deserts, cowboy towns and the thrills of Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon as you follow 'America's Main Street' to its end in Santa Monica. Come join us on our special departure and be a part of the International Route 66 Festival in beautiful historic Springfield, where the streets come alive with the rumble of engines from hot cars, cool trucks, and vintage motorcycles. There is free live entertainment featuring R&B, Motown and your favourite tunes of the 50's and 60's. There are also exhibitors, vendors and dozens of speciality foods. Spend the day and evening in Springfield so you can be part of all the action. Maximum elevation on this tour is 7,262 ft.
Accommodation as stated or similar
There's no need to shop around. Find a cheaper like-for-like tour from another company, and we’ll not only match their price but also give you a £50 discount when you book with us.
They have in-depth knowledge of the places you’ll visit and will be on hand every step of the way with commentary entirely in English. 96% of customers rate them 'excellent' or 'good'.
We've been creating unforgettable holidays since 1994. We are a member of ABTA and all our flight-inclusive holidays are fully protected by the CAA's ATOL scheme.