Experience the Real America
Overnight: Renaissance – Denver,Colorado
Hotel: Renaissance – Denver,ColoradoSpend the day in Denver, where a thriving cultural scene is combined with the outstanding natural beauty of the Rocky Mountains. World class shopping is located at the upscale Cherry Creek Shopping Center and 16th Street Pedestrian Mall. A young, active city provides a spectacular playground for all, featuring award-winning dining, stunning architecture and unparalleled views. Outdoor activities, cultural pursuits and sporting events are among Denver’s best attractions. Don’t miss the Red Rocks Amphitheater and the Denver Art Museum where exhibits are enhanced by the museum’s unusual architecture and design. Rent a bike and cycle along bike paths or explore attractions by bike including Elitch Gardens, Coors Field and History Colorado Centre.
Hotel: State Game Lodge & Resort – Custer State Park, South Dakota
The Black Hills (also known as Paha Sapa) are one of the most photogenic areas of South Dakota. Home to the legendary Mount Rushmore National Memorial – an awesome feat of engineering, carved from a mountain of granite and with plenty of attractions and activities to occupy anyone for days. The area has the highest concentration of national parks and monuments in the country covering an area 125 miles long and 65 miles wide. Take a tour of Wind Cave National Park which contains one of the world’s longest caves, at 140 miles and counting, with amazing boxwork, frostwork and popcorn formations. Visit Custer State Park, the second largest state park in the nation and home to one of the largest free roaming buffalo herds; the beauty of Custer State Park was so breathtaking it served as the “summer White House” for President Calvin Coolidge in 1927. The Peter Norbeck Scenic Highway is a holiday paradise commonly encountering “Buffalo Jams” while driving through the park. An abundance of roaming wildlife offer spectacular photo opportunities.
Hotel: Alex Johnson Hotel – Rapid City, South DakotaMake your way east to Rapid City – home to museums including the Journey Museum and a newly-revamped downtown scene. Rapid City is filled with art galleries, fashionable boutiques, a variety of fine cuisine, the City of President statues and great entertainment including music theatre and various events. Enjoy an astonishing visit to Badlands National Park – a maze of 244,000 acres of sharply eroded buttes, pinnacles and spires formed by millions of years of erosion being ruthlessly ravaged by wind and water. Blended with the largest protected mixed grass prairie in the United States, look for miles and see no sign of civilization. Also the preserve of the world’s greatest fossil beds of animals from the Oligocene Epoch of the Age of Mammals, Badlands National Park is a fascinating world of protected fossils, rocks, plants and animals with prehistoric bones still being uncovered today. Stop in at the small gateway town of Wall to visit the tourist mall Wall Drug.
Hotel: Radisson Hotel – Bismarck – North DakotaDepart for the twin cities of Bismarck-Mandan, North Dakota in the morning. Bismarck is the capital city of North Dakota and lies on the banks of the Missouri River that divides the city into Bismarck-Mandan. Go back in time at the newly renovated North Dakota Heritage Center, visit the Native American Earth Lodges in Mandan and walk in General George Armstrong Custer’s footsteps at Fort Abraham Lincoln.
Hotel: Rough Riders Hotel – Medora, North DakotaHead west to Medora, diverting slightly south to admire the Enchanted Highway, a 32-mile stretch of paved county highway that features spectacular giant concrete and metal sculptures. In Medora take in the nightly outdoor Medora Musical and Pitchfork Fondue dinner in the summer with the dynamic landscape of the North Dakotan Badlands as your backdrop. Visit the Cowboy Hall of Fame, Badlands Shooting Gallery or take a Behind the Scenes Tour. Have family fun at the Medora Children’s Park and Mini-Golf. There’s plenty to see and do for all ages in Medora.
Hotel: Rough Riders Hotel – Medora, North Dakota
Hotel: Best Western Plus Clocktower Inn – Billings, Montana
Hotel: Best Western Premier – Helena, Montana
Hotel: Pine Lodge Whitefish – Whitefish, MontanaTake a boat tour through the Gates of the Mountains, a dramatic stretch of the Missouri River, with 1,200ft cliffs on either side. Then make your way to the spectacular Glacier National Park to explore glacial-scoured valleys, towering peaks, tumbling waterfalls, verdant forests and wildflower-strewn meadows. Keep an eye out for grizzly bears, elk, mountain goats and bighorn sheep. This breathtaking wilderness in Montana’s Rocky Mountains runs to the Canadian border and includes more than 700 miles of hiking trails with a route to photogenic Hidden Lake. A drive or guided Red Jammer tour along the magnificent 50 mile Going-to-the-Sun Road is a must!!!
Hotel: Pine Lodge Whitefish – Whitefish, MontanaContinue your exploration of stunning Glacier National Park.
Hotel: Best Western Plus Butte Plaza Inn – Butte, Montana
Hotel: Yellowstone Park Hotel – West Yellowstone, WyomingExplore the historical downtown of Butte before continuing south to the Old West mining towns of Virginia City and Nevada City which have been restored to reflect the boom days when settlers and miners migrated to Montana in the late 1800s. Spend the afternoon exploring the historic shops, theatres and houses and depart for West Yellowstone, adjacent to Yellowstone National Park.
Hotel: Lake Yellowstone Hotel & Cabins – Yellowstone, WyomingAn early start is required for the nation’s flagship of the National Park Service and a favourite destination for millions of visitors every year. Yellowstone – best known for the geysers, hot springs and mud pots that make the park one of the most active geothermal areas on the planet. The awe-inspiring landscape covers over 2,000,000 acres with over 10,000 thermal features and hundreds of animal species. Popular sites include Mammoth Hot Springs, Yellowstone Lake, Old Faithful, Lamar and Hayden Valleys and the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone with its inspirational view of Lower Falls. Yellowstone Lake is the largest high altitude lake in North America and with over 290 waterfalls, the 308’ Lower Falls of the Yellowstone River are a showpiece not to be missed.
Hotel: Best Western Premier Ivy Inn – Cody, WyomingFrom the north east entrance of Yellowstone take a scenic drive on the spectacular 68-mile Beartooth Scenic Highway, often regarded as the most beautiful drive in America, briefly back into Montana. Continue onto the mountain resort of Red Lodge, before travelling across state borders into Wyoming toward Buffalo Bill’s Cody. Lose yourself in the expansive Buffalo Bill Center of the West, a complex of five fascinating museums, visit the Old Trail Town, view the live shootout performances in front of the Irma Hotel, and take in the daily Summer Cody Nite Rodeo. Outdoor adventure includes rock climbing, mountain biking, hiking, kayaking, river rafting and more. The scenic byways offer opportunities to view wildlife and see some of the most beautiful landscapes found anywhere.
Hotel: Hampton Inn & Suites Riverton – Riverton, WyomingFrom Cody make your way south to Thermopolis (Greek for “Hot City), the world’s largest mineral hot springs. The community has two large hot spring complexes, the Star Plunge and Teepee, as well as a free public bathhouse. Temperatures range from cool to 41° C (106° F) – choose from a relaxing soak or enjoy the water slides. Take the Wind River Canyon Scenic Byway, through spectacular rock walls rising 2,500 vertical feet, and some of the oldest rock formations in the world which date back to the Precambrian period (more than 2.9 billion years ago).
Hotel: The Lodge at Jackson Hole – Jackson, Wyoming
As you make your way to Jackson, make a stop in Dubois, nestled in a picturesque valley between the Absaroka and Wind River mountain ranges – the rustic log buildings lining the main street look much as they did when the town was first settled in the late 1800’s. ‘Cosmopolitan western’ Jackson features wooden sidewalks, elk antler arches and shops that range from the chic to the traditional; saddle up at the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar or visit the world-famous Silver Dollar Bar.
Hotel: The Lodge at Jackson Hole – Jackson, WyomingGrand Teton National Park is one of the world’s most striking and memorable landscapes, dominated by the Tetons, a 40-mile mountain range that is part of the famed Rocky Mountains. Mountains, valleys, lakes, rivers and skies are home to diverse and abundant forests, wildflowers and wildlife. Rich in cultural history, the park also has old homesteads and cattle ranches to explore and photograph. Spend the day exploring the park – drive the 42-mile Scenic Loop, visit Grand Teton National Park Visitors Center, or take the Aerial Tram. Enjoy a hike or wildlife safari, take a boat trip on one of the lakes and visit the town of Jackson.