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Brooklyn Bridge at sunset, New York

USA tours

The USA is a vast and diverse place and getting your travel plans right can make all the difference to your trip. With so much to see and such a large area to cover, it's worth thinking carefully about which route to take.

Whether it’s the rural villages of New England or the ranches of the Deep South that draw you here, we can advise on the logistics of getting around and how to combine some of the country's highlights. Our tour ideas are the product of extensive travel in the USA and are routes that work particularly well.

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Audley Travel specialist Shannon

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Our recommended tours in the USA

These itineraries are designed to give you some suggestions for what is possible when you travel in the USA, and they showcase some of the routes that we’ve found work particularly well. Treat them simply as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely for you by one of our specialists based on your particular tastes and interests.

  • Maine Coast USA

    Classic New England Self-Drive

    • Discover the revolutionary history of Boston on a guided tour of the Freedom Trail.

    • Explore the rugged coastline of Maine, dotted with lighthouses and quaint seaside towns.

    • Wander through the picturesque villages and rolling hills of Vermont.

    • Take in panoramic views from atop Mount Washington in New Hampshire's magnificent White Mountains.

    • Go whale watching off the waters of Cape Cod.

    14 days from €2,775pp

  • Mist amid the hills of Shenandoah National Park

    Self-Drive Journey Through Virginia

    • Explore Williamsburg's historic colonial buildings and perhaps enjoy an al fresco lunch in Merchants Square.

    • Discover the history of quaint historic towns such as Charlottesville and Annapolis.

    • Drive the stunning Skyline Drive through the lush forest scenery of Shenandoah National Park.

    • Relax on the beautiful beaches of Virginia Beach.

    • Visit the White House, Capitol Building and national museums in Washington D.C.

    13 days from €2,865pp

  • Desert, Saguaro Cactus, Southern Arizona

    Arizona and New Mexico Discovered Self-Drive

    • Admire the cacti-studded scenery of southern Arizona, exploring Saguaro National Park.

    • Enjoy scenic drives through forests, deserts and mountains.

    • Learn all about the Ancestral Puebloan tribes with visits to their ancient cliff dwellings.

    • Discover the region's Spanish heritage in Santa Fe and visit old mining towns.

    14 days from €2,875pp

  • Waterfront on Mackinac Island

    Explore Lake Michigan

    • Visit the Motown Museum to learn more about its important legacy.

    • Sample a number of craft beers from local breweries in Detroit.

    • Enjoy sweeping views of Lake Michigan from Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive.

    • Climb the sand dunes in Sleeping Bear and photograph Glen Lake from the top.

    • Take a self-guided tour of historic Fort Mackinac.

    • Explore the walking trails of Mackinac Island to reach hidden caves and arch rock formations.

    10 days from €2,875pp

  • Grapevine Hills, Big Bend National Park, Texas

    Texas Trails Self-Drive

    • Ride out along the trails and learn about the cowboy way of life on a Texan ranch.

    • Taste the state's culinary speciality, the Texas barbecue.

    • Visit San Antonio's famous Alamo, a shrine of Texan independence.

    • Enjoy live music at its best in the state capital, Austin.

    • Sample cowboy culture at Fort Worth's historic Stockyards district.

    14 days from €3,140pp

  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park

    Blue Ridge & Great Smoky Mountains Self-Drive

    • Soak up the scenery of Shenandoah and Great Smoky Mountains National Parks on ranger-led walks.

    • Look out for black bears in Shenandoah and salamanders in the Great Smoky Mountains.

    • Drive along the Skyline Drive and Blue Ridge Parkway scenic highways, stopping to explore towns and villages en route.

    • Visit Washington D.C.'s iconic monuments, memorials, museums and galleries.

    14 days from €3,330pp

  • Oak Alley plantation, Mississippi

    Discovering the Deep South

    • Wander the streets of Nashville, lined with music venues that you can enjoy any time of the day.

    • Immerse yourself in US Civil Rights history in Memphis at the moving National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel.

    • Explore the grand antebellum homes and plantation mansions along the Mississippi.

    • Delve into the culinary history of New Orleans, learning how to cook gumbo and jambalaya.

    14 days from €3,490pp

  • Jefferson Memorial, Washington

    Pennsylvania & Virginia Self-Drive

    • Visit the historic battle site at Gettysburg.

    • Experience the wonderful colonial heritage of Williamsburg.

    • Tour the monuments and memorials of Washington D.C.

    • Drive along the magnificently scenic Skyland Drive in Shenandoah National Park.

    15 days from €3,590pp

  • Bixby Bridge at Big Sur California, Pacific Coast High Way

    Coastal California Self-Drive

    • Tour Alcatraz and cycle across the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.

    • Go whale watching in Monterey, looking out for orca and humpback whales.

    • Drive along the Pacific Coast Highway with its dramatic views of the rugged coastline and the ocean.

    • Relax on the soft sands of Pismo Beach.

    • Enjoy the sparkle and glamour of Hollywood and Beverly Hills in Los Angeles.

    11 days from €3,675pp

  • Boston Skyline

    Cities of the East

    • Reduce the carbon footprint of your holiday, travelling by rail.

    • Explore Boston's rich history, including its role in the American Revolution.

    • Experience the bright lights of New York City, visiting the statue of Liberty and Central Park.

    • See the Declaration of Independence and the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia.

    • Take a tour around the museums, monuments and memorials in Washington D.C.

    13 days from €3,715pp

  • Brooklyn Bridge sunset New York Manhattan

    New York State Discovered Self-Drive

    • Experience the thundering cascades of Niagara Falls by boat or helicopter.

    • Go walking or canoeing in the Adirondack Mountains, looking out for moose, beavers and coyotes.

    • Sample wines from the beautiful vineyards of the Finger Lakes region.

    • Enjoy the multitude of shopping, sightseeing and dining options in New York City.

    15 days from €3,775pp

  • Niagara Falls, Ontario

    New England and Niagara Falls Self-Drive

    • Tour the cobblestone streets of Boston's North End.

    • Take the Cog Railway to the summit of Mount Washington in New Hampshire's White Mountains.

    • Soak up the culture of the Berkshires in Stockbridge.

    • Board the 'Hornblower' boat to explore magnificent Niagara Falls.

    14 days from €3,850pp

  • Laura Plantation

    Exploring Cajun Country

    • Learn from a local about traditional Cajun cuisine in an open demonstration cooking class.

    • Explore a number of plantations to discover Louisiana's rich history.

    • Taste your way around Baton Rouge's many craft breweries.

    • Visit the country's largest river swamp and spot a bald eagle at the Atchafalaya Basin.

    11 days from €3,875pp

  • Kentucky horses

    Highlights of Kentucky & Tennessee Self-Drive

    • Explore the magnificent scenery of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

    • Sample bourbon and go horse racing in Kentucky.

    • Go underground at Mammoth Cave National Park.

    • Discover the rich country music heritage of Nashville.

    • Learn about the South's fascinating, and turbulent, civil rights heritage.

    16 days from €3,995pp

  • Abandon Crystal Mill near Aspen

    Colorado Rockies Explored

    • Explore the foothills of the Rocky Mountains outside of Denver.

    • Visit the authentic mountain town of Breckenridge.

    • Enjoy a white water rafting adventure on the Roaring Fork River outside of Aspen.

    • See wildlife such as moose and elk in Rocky Mountain National Park.

    15 days from €4,070pp

  • Houses in Charleston's Historic District

    Historic South Carolina Self-Drive

    • Stroll through the streets of Charleston with an expert guide and get local insights into the city’s rich history.

    • Visit a number of historical plantations set upon the Ashley River, just a short drive from Charleston.

    • Enjoy typical Southern traditions at Montage Palmetto Bluff and sample fire-roasted S’mores, homemade sweet tea and slow-simmered shrimp and grits.

    • Bask in the Carolina sunshine on Hilton Head Island.

    12 days from €4,130pp

  • Venice Beach, Los Angeles

    Best of the West

    • Explore the glamour of Hollywood and chic Beverly Hills in Los Angeles.

    • Follow walking trails and see incredible geological formations in California and Arizona’s national parks.

    • Drive the iconic Pacific Coast Highway for dramatic views over the ocean and rugged coastline.

    • Soak up the electric atmosphere of Las Vegas.

    21 days from €4,475pp

  • Napa Valley vineyard

    California Explored

    • Discover the lavish lifestyles of the rich and famous in Hollywood and Beverly Hills.

    • Explore the beaches and pretty towns along the Pacific coastline.

    • Watch for wildlife and get close to nature in Yosemite and Sequoia National Parks.

    • See the salt flats of Badwater in the desolate Death Valley National Park.

    • Enjoy wine tasting in the glorious vineyards of the Napa Valley.

    21 days from €4,520pp

  • Chicago

    The Great Lakes Trail Self-Drive

    • Visit the rejuvenated cities of Detroit and Minneapolis - St. Paul.

    • Explore the enormous sand dunes at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.

    • Go walking and cycling in car-free Mackinac Island.

    • Relish the tranquility and thriving wildlife in Isle Royale National Park.

    • Discover Wisconsin's pretty Apostle Islands.

    17 days from €4,545pp

  • Whales, Hawaii

    Hawaii Highlights Self-Drive

    • Explore Maui's white-sand beaches.

    • Experience the heat of Kilauea Volcano.

    • Snorkel with sea turtles, whales and dolphins.

    • Between January and March you can also take a boat trip on the Pacific Ocean to see majestic humpback whales at sunrise.

    13 days from €4,565pp

  • North Cascades National Park, USA

    USA Pacific Northwest Self-Drive

    • Enjoy the hustle and bustle of Pike's Place Market in Seattle.

    • See the iconic Haystack Rocks at Cannon Beach.

    • Explore the gorgeous Japanese and Rose gardens in Portland.

    • Walk the trails and explore the waterfalls around Hood River and Cascade Locks.

    • Explore alpine meadows around Mount Rainier.

    15 days from €4,635pp

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Beach tours with a touch of exploration

These tour ideas, from our Hidden Beaches collection, are our answer if you’re looking to relax but still want to explore. Each tour combines time at one of our hand-picked beach properties with a few days spent either on safari, taking in a city, discovering the local culture or hopping to the next beach. They are only suggestions though, and a specialist will plan your holiday individually.

  • Beach, Carlisle Bay, Antigua

    Carlisle Bay and Miami

    Beach + Beach hopping

    Enjoy the art deco architecture and exciting atmosphere of Miami Beach before flying to Antigua’s stunning coastline and colonial history for a relaxing week at a luxurious beach resort.

    12 days from €3,920pp

    3 nights Miami, room only; 7 nights Carlisle Bay, including breakfast. Includes flights and transfers

Some of our favourite travel guides

Manatees at Crystal River, Florida

5 of the best family activities in the USA

Eating lunch with an astronaut in Houston, snorkeling with Florida’s manatees, or a helicopter flight over the Grand Canyon’s yawning chasm: our USA specialists pick five standout family activities you can include in your trip.

View this travel guide
Flatiron Building, New York

New York City & Capital Region

This region includes New York, Washington D.C. and Philadelphia. Whether you want to visit coastal settlements, discover Virginia's history, or drive through New York state's magnificent scenery, we can provide detailed advice and plan a trip to suit you.

View this travel guide
Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone

The USA’s Rockies: ranches, wolves & Wild West towns

The USA’s Rockies is a region of soaring mountains, wide open plains scattered with bison, and historic Gold Rush towns where time has stood still. USA specialist Alex shares the best things to do in the Rockies, from Yellowstone tours to ranch stays.

View this travel guide
Herd of bisons in Yellowstone

Experience Yellowstone National Park

Located in Wyoming and extending into Montana and Idaho, Yellowstone is America's oldest and largest national park. Here you can experience the world-famous geothermal features, abundant wildlife, lakes, rivers and canyons, as well as hiking and other outdoor activities.

View this travel guide
Painted Ladies, Alamo Square, San Francisco

Combine a USA city break with a wilderness adventure

Combining a city break with some of the USA's national parks is an ideal way to experience the best of both worlds on a trip to this vast country. Our Country Specialists can help you to decide which cities and parks are best suited to your preferences and needs.

View this travel guide
Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park

Self-driving through Arizona & Utah in America’s Southwest

Our specialists will have travelled the routes we offer so you can rest assured that you'll get the most from your self-drive holiday in the US. They'll also plan the best places to stay, things to see and do, and even what car is most suited to your needs. In short, they make sure everything runs smoothly.

View this travel guide
Hurricane Ridge Olympic National Park

Pacific Northwest: our highlights

A quieter alternative to California, the Pacific Northwest is home to stratovolcanoes, temperate rainforest, deep gorges and a wild coastline. USA specialist Alex shares his highlights of the region, from outdoor activities to food tours in the characterful cities of Portland and Seattle.

View this travel guide
Saint Paul skyline

Great Lakes

Relax on a lakeside beach or explore cities such as Chicago and Milwaukee. Go wildlife spotting for moose or take part in a range of outdoor activities, the Great Lakes region has plenty to offer visitors of all ages.

View this travel guide
Route 66, Texas

Route 66 holidays

Known as the ‘Mother Road’, Route 66 helped open up America and shape its identity. Whether you choose to drive the whole route or just part of it, your road trip will showcase the country’s culture, history and landscapes.

View this travel guide
Woodstock

Where to go in the USA by season

Whatever the time of year, there’s always somewhere in the US ripe for exploring. To help you decide where to go in spring, summer, autumn or winter, our specialists have chosen their top experiences and places to visit in the US by season.

View this travel guide