Cosmos - Western Wonders 2019
LOS ANGELES to SAN FRANCISCO
From the gorgeous national parks to the thrilling cities, this western U.S. tour through California, Arizona, and Nevada features unique rock formations, scenic drives, deep canyons, and sparking waterfalls and lakes—not to mention fun in some of the world’s most famous cities. Your tour starts in Los Angeles, ends in San Francisco, and overnights along the way in Palm Springs, Scottsdale, Williams, Las Vegas, Tulare, Modesto, and San Francisco.
You’ll visit two of the West’s most famous and beautiful national parks, Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona and Yosemite National Park in California. Stroll the Grand Canyon’s South Rim and stand in awe as you witness the breathtaking scenery. In Yosemite National Park, have your camera ready for the giant granite domes, cascading waterfalls, lush forests, and more. But that’s not all…you’ll also witness spectacular scenery on your drives. Between Scottsdale and the Grand Canyon, you’ll see Arizona's Oak Creek Canyon, known as one of America’s most beautiful drives and home to brilliantly hued cliffs and rugged spires of sandstone, and you’ll stop in Sedona, with the massive red-rock formations that make the area famous. Between Williams and Las Vegas, watch for Joshua trees, which can grow to be more than 40 feet tall. Between Las Vegas and Tulare, you’ll witness the vast Mojave Desert.
Enjoy sightseeing in Los Angeles, Phoenix, and San Francisco. Perhaps take a ride on San Francisco’s historic cable cars or enjoy an optional outing to Alcatraz Prison, the federal penitentiary that once housed Al Capone and other notorious criminals—the choice is yours! Free time in each city—including Las Vegas—gives you time to explore on your own or to take optional excursions.
Breathtaking scenery, exciting cities, scenic drives, and more…this western U.S. tour is a perfect holiday for savvy, value-minded travellers.
Welcome to Los Angeles! Your Tour Director is on hand late this afternoon to answer any questions.
Begin the day with a sightseeing tour of Tinseltown. Drive through Hollywood and see the historic TCL Chinese Theatre. A historic gem, this worldfamous cinema (formerly, Grauman's), has hosted some of the most exclusive movie premieres in Hollywood history. The Dolby Theatre (formerly the Kodak Theatre) is the first permanent home of the glamorous Academy Awards. See the Hollywood Walk of Fame where iconic terrazzo stars grace block after city block of Hollywood Boulevard and Street-air Farmers Market, with more than 140 shops and restaurants. The remainder of your day is at leisure; your Tour Director will have suggestions for further exploration of the city.
LOS ANGELES-PALM SPRINGS.
Journey to the desert oasis of Palm Springs. Ever since Hollywood stars first came here in the 1930s, laying claim to ranch-style estates and holding up in elite hotels, the clean, dry air and sunshine have made Palm Springs irresistible.
Travel through cacti-covered desert toward Old Town Scottsdale, where Western storefronts create an aura of the past. Afterward, enjoy free time to explore a taste of the Old West, with restaurants, shopping, and Western bars. With wooden beams, wagon wheels, and cowboy hats abundant, you'll feel like you've travelled back in time to the era of outlaws and saloons.
SCOTTSDALE-SEDONA-GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK-WILLIAMS.
Travel to Sedona, a thriving centre for New Age arts set in Canyon Country. On to the weather-sculptured rock formations of Oak Creek Canyon. Travel alongside the San Francisco Mountains and beautiful pine forests to the South Rim of the GRAND CANYON. Time to stroll the canyon rim- or, for a once-in-a-lifetime experience, take an optional helicopter flightseeing excursion for incomparable views of flame-coloured walls plunging 6,093 feet (1857 metres) into the Colorado River. Overnight in Williams, a mountain town with Route 66 as the Main Street and the gateway to the Grand Canyon.
Cross the old Mojave gold-strike country, which still has traces of century-old ghost towns set in natural desert beauty. Watch for Joshua trees, a species of the lily family that grows to more than 40 feet in height and can live up to 300 years. By late afternoon, reach Las Vegas, the fantastic city of feverish gambling, neon lights, bars, and glamorous shows. An orientation tour upon arrival shows off many of the themed casino resorts along the colourful "Strip." This evening, we highly recommend a night out to a dazzling stage show featuring top Vegas entertainment.
The day is free to swim and sunbathe at the hotel pool or to explore the varied casinos and shopping plazas. Your Tour Director will have more suggestions. Consider a river float trip through the Black Canyon.
Departing the neon lights of Las Vegas, we continue across the desert landscape of Nevada before crossing into California. You'll see the vast Mojave Desert, which covers one-fifth of California. Pass through the agricultural land and overnight in Tulare in the central San Joaquin Valley.
TULARE-YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK-MODESTO.
This morning, we enter YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, a wonderland of spectacular lakes, giant granite domes, towering pinnacles, cascading waterfalls, and lush forests. Afterward, drive to Modesto. (CB)
This morning, we continue west to the "Golden Gate City" of San Francisco, famous for its cable cars. Lunch in the pristine waterfront community of Sausalito. Free time to explore this quaint, Mediterranean-style village's shops, galleries, and breathtaking views. Afterward, included sightseeing takes in the spectacular Golden Gate Bridge. (CB)
The day is free for you to explore more of this fascinating city. Perhaps visit the notorious former prison of Alcatraz, which housed famous gangsters such as Al Capone, "Machine Gun" Kelly, and Robert "The Birdman" Stroud. Afterward, the day is yours to do some more exploring in the "City by the Bay." NOTE: Consider advance ticket purchase for Alcatraz Island with the National Park Service.
Your holiday ends this morning. Extend your holiday with extra nights and explore the "City by the Bay" further with a variety of exciting optional activities.
Price shown is based on low season travel
Specific travel dates apply
*per person share twin
12 Days From
- HOTELS - Includes rooms with private bath or shower, hotel taxes, service charges, and tips for baggage handling.
- INSIDE VISITS and special features are shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description, including admission charges where applicable.
- PROFESSIONAL TOUR DIRECTOR
- TRANSPORTATION - Private, deluxe, air-conditioned motorcoach while touring.
- MEALS - Indicated by breakfast (B), lunch (L), and dinner (D) on the itinerary.
- COSMOSGO - Get our mobile app for trip information.