Shake, rattle and roll your way through the big hearted, musically influenced southern cities of America. Starting off in the country music Mecca of Nashville, you'll toe tap your way towards Memphis, paying homage to the King at Graceland before heading on to the life and soul of the party, New Orleans. Creole cooking, voodoo mysteries and alligator filled swamps all await you here, not to mention NOLA's ability to turn every single day into a life loving celebration. Sunny smiles, massive barbecues and musical legends will all ensure you leave the south with a very full heart.
10 nights / 11 days
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Good old-fashioned Southern hospitality, charm and big smiles from locals will welcome you to 'Music City', otherwise known as Nashville. A place of pilgrimage for country music enthusiasts, Nashville attracts musicians, song writers and performers and this city is certainly responsible for the evolution and popularity of the country genre we know and love. The careers of some of the biggest names in the music industry started right here in the basement studios of Music Row or on stage at the famous Grand Ole Opry, and you'll notice this legacy is apparent all across town. Settle into your hotel and meet up with your Travel Director this afternoon, then retire to your room to enjoy a relaxing evening at your leisure.
Get your bearings this morning on a tour that will take you to Riverfront Park, Tennessee State Capitol and Centennial State Park, where you'll be transported straight to Athens as you admire the Parthenon, a jaw-dropping exact replica of the original. Icons visited, you'll then delve into the incredible musical history of the city with a visit to Music Row, stopping off at RCA Studio B where industry legends like Dolly Parton and the Everly Brothers have all recorded albums. No Nashville musical tour would be complete without a snoop around the Country Music Hall of Fame, which traces the history of country music and proudly displays priceless memorabilia from Hank Williams and Loretta Lynn. Scout out the tastiest hot chicken and biscuits on your own this afternoon, then this evening you're off to the Grand Ole Opry to listen to a live show of America's longest running live radio program.
Ready to continue your country music education today on your own? If so there's no better option than the Ryman Auditorium, where you can take a self-guided tour and watch music magic come to life through the 'Soul of Nashville' theatre Optional Experience. Check out Nashville's newest museum - The National Museum of African American Music that tells the story of American music through interactive technology. The night is young! If you're feeling in the mood, get out into the action and experience a honky tonk under the neon lights of Broadway!
From one music obsessed city to another, you'll leave Nashville this morning and travel to Memphis. Home to 'The King' who needs little introduction, music is the life blood of this toe tapping city with bluesy Beale St. a fine example of this. Arriving here you'll dive straight in with an orientation tour viewing the impressive Memphis Pyramid and the historic Peabody Hotel. Next, see the Lorraine Motel, perhaps one of the most significant site of the entire Civil Rights Movement, the very place where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in 1968. With an afternoon and evening free, you might want to check out our Optional Experiences. You could visit the Rock N' Soul Museum, which displays wonderfully curated exhibits that tell the story of the birth of rock and soul music before grooving on over to Beale Street for a BBQ dinner at a lively joint that serves up Southern treats accompanied by live music, naturally.
Prepare to start your morning with a taste of the local Memphis cuisine that is sure to have your mouth watering. We hope you didn't peak too soon on last night's dinner, because this morning's Iconic Breakfast is Southern food, served with the same hospitality you'll find all throughout this city. You'll likely find yourself rolling out of a classic all-American diner, full of good eats and ready for all the excitement your next stop has to offer. Arrive at Sun Studio, where Elvis was first discovered back in 1954 and where you'll experience the legacy left behind by the 'King of Rock n' Roll' himself. Today will be a special one for Elvis fans as you have the chance to make the pilgrimage to Graceland.
It's your final day in Memphis today so be sure to make the most of it before bidding a fond farewell to the Home of the Blues, Soul, and Rock-n-Roll. With your day at leisure, perhaps consider a Civil Rights History & Culture tour including the National Civil Rights Museum and Slave Haven Underground Railroad Museum. This museum is a complex of two historic buildings and houses extensive cultural exhibits that trace five centuries of history. Your visit will leave you nothing less than a moving experience from the tragic history of those that fought tirelessly for equality at this tribute and in-depth dive into American history. In the late afternoon you can join the Backbeats Musical Mojo Tour and dive deep into Blues Music.
Under the guidance of your passionate Travel Director, you'll soon understand how, and why, this important thoroughfare was originally established as a footpath by Native Americans and was later used by explorers, traders and travelers, including the Ohio River Valley boatmen who were known as 'kaintucks'. We'll arrive on the banks of the Mississippi as we pull into Natchez, where the unique architecture of the South could be further understood as you explore the antebellum homes that are scattered here on our Optional Experience. These large mansions were originally built as plantation homes and remained untouched throughout history. If you feel like taking a closer look, you'll have the chance to visit an Antebellum Classical Revival mansion, Stanton Hall. In the evening, join an optional mixology class at the National Historic Landmark - the Dunleith Historic Inn, followed by a delicious elevated Southern dinner.
Heading further south today, travel over the world's longest continuous bridge over water as you journey towards 'The Big Easy'. Famed for its Mardi Gras celebrations and diverse culture, everything in New Orleans is a little larger than life. The weddings are bigger, the funerals are louder, the food is unique, and every single day is a cause for celebration. Meeting up with a Local Specialist on arrival you'll head out on a city tour. You'll also visit one of the city's many unique cemeteries, taking a peek around the elaborate stone crypts and mausoleums. Tonight, we recommend you sample some good Creole cooking, and in our opinion there's only one place to go for the best food in town - the New Orleans institution, Dooky Chase.
Waking up with an extra NOLA induced spring in your step, today is entirely free for you to explore and perhaps try an Optional Experience. With the day ahead of you, there's no shortage of ways to spend your time. Head back to the cute cafes and decadent mansions of the Garden District, have your fortune told in Jackson Square or eat your way around the many incredible restaurants and cafés that dot around the city as you refuel from your adventures. If the swamps and bayous are on your list, there's the Option to get out on the water with a boat trip through the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve. Led by a local guide who'll share their in-depth knowledge of the region they'll keep a keen eye out so you can, spot 'gators, eagles, snakes and egrets as you cruise these wild wetlands on this afternoon adventure.
It's your final full day in NOLA and the final day of your trip, so make sure you go out in style. Why not join an Optional Experience cooking demonstration to learn how you can recreate some of the city's tastiest dishes once you return home. The New Orleans School of Cooking is hosted by local chefs who share tips and stories, plus there are plenty of tasters to keep appetites at bay. Or visit the WWII Museum, designated by Congress as America's official museum about World War II, The National WWII Museum features a rich collection of artifacts that bring history to life. Jazz fans can opt into a Jazz Dinner Cruise on the Mississippi River, accompanied by the sounds of the Grammy nominated band Dukes of Dixieland, played by a live band.
With the bluesy beats of Beale Street and the smiles of Nashville still fresh in your mind, your trip will come to an end today. Delicious Southern food still fresh in your thoughts and undoubtedly richer in memories, you'll say goodbye to your new friends as you head your separate ways. If you can't bear to leave NOLA just yet, you can also choose to extend your stay.
|Start Date||Duration (Days)||Price (Tour Only)||Availability||Booking|
|25 March 2024||11 Days||from €1775pp (Tour Only)||available||Call 01 2311889 to Book|
|08 April 2024||11 Days||from €1775pp (Tour Only)||available||Call 01 2311889 to Book|
|18 April 2024||11 Days||from €2125pp (Tour Only)||available||Call 01 2311889 to Book|
|13 May 2024||11 Days||from €1775pp (Tour Only)||closed||This trip is full|
|20 May 2024||11 Days||from €1775pp (Tour Only)||closed||This trip is full|
|10 June 2024||11 Days||from €1775pp (Tour Only)||available||Call 01 2311889 to Book|
|16 September 2024||11 Days||from €1775pp (Tour Only)||available||Call 01 2311889 to Book|
|30 September 2024||11 Days||from €1775pp (Tour Only)||available||Call 01 2311889 to Book|
|14 October 2024||11 Days||from €1775pp (Tour Only)||available||Call 01 2311889 to Book|
|Duration: 11 Days||Call 01 2311889 to Book!|
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