National Parks & Canyon Country with Rapid City start


  • 13 days

  • National Parks

  • Active pace

tour : 8605

Overview

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Marvel at premier natural wonders on this multi-state vacation that focuses on some of the West’s most scenic national parks. This National Parks tour starts in Rapid City and ends in Las Vegas. In between, you’ll visit Mount Rushmore, Yellowstone National Park, Grand Teton National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, Zion National Park, and Grand Canyon National Park. From spectacular rock formations and deep canyons to sparkling waterfalls, geysers, and lakes, you’ll see a wide variety of breathtaking natural treasures.

In South Dakota, visit Crazy Horse Memorial, built to honor the famous Sioux Indian leader; incomparable Mount Rushmore; and Deadwood, once a lawless gold-mining town. In Wyoming, stay two nights inside Yellowstone National Park and see magnificent views of Yellowstone Canyon, Lower Falls, and world-famous Old Faithful Geyser. Yellowstone has the largest concentration of mammals in the lower 48 states, so have your camera ready for wildlife such as bison, elk, and pronghorn. Journey into breathtaking Grand Teton National Park—home to 13,770-foot-high ridges—for a delightful stroll along glacier-fed Jenny Lake.

More stunning scenery awaits you in Utah, where you'll visit Bryce Canyon National Park. You'll be amazed at the bright red, yellow, and pink pillars called "hoodoos." Zion National Park is home to canyons sculpted over millions of years and soaring cliffs resembling temples and cathedrals. In Arizona, enjoy Lake Powell and overnight in Grand Canyon National Park, giving you an amazing opportunity to see breathtaking views and to take an evening stroll to marvel at the dramatic sunset. If you miss the sunset, sunrise is also spectacular!

This value-minded, National Parks tour offers all of this and much more—including time in the Wild West town of Jackson, Wyoming. Just wait until you see the awe-inspiring scenery!

Highlights

BLACK HILLS
Scenic drive; visit Crazy Horse Memorial and Mount Rushmore National Memorial
YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK
Stay two nights inside Yellowstone National Park or in West Yellowstone; sightseeing
JACKSONGrand Teton National Park sightseeing; glacier-fed Jenny Lake
SALT LAKE CITY
Sightseeing
BRYCE CANYON NATIONAL PARK
Sightseeing
ZION NATIONAL PARK
Sightseeing
PAGELake Powell; Glen Canyon Dam
GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK
Stay overnight inside the park; sightseeing

Flights available from most UK airports

Tour prices are shown without flights: make your own arrangements, or purchase your flights with us from most UK airports. All flight-inclusive tours are ATOL-protected, so you can book with confidence.

Flights available from most UK airports

2020 Tour itinerary

Inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description, including admission charges where applicable.

Total meals included:

  • 4 breakfasts

RAPID CITY–KEYSTONE

Day
1

Welcome to Keystone in the beautiful Black Hills. Your Tour Director is on hand late this afternoon to answer any questions.

KEYSTONE–CRAZY HORSE–MOUNT RUSHMORE–DEADWOOD

Day
2

Visit CRAZY HORSE MEMORIAL, a monument carved out of a mountain that pays respect to the great Native American hero, Chief Crazy Horse. Drive deep into the Black Hills, through what was Sioux Indian territory, to see the stunning granite faces of MOUNT RUSHMORE, a giant monument to four great American presidents: Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt. On to Deadwood, a lawless frontier town during the 1876 Gold Rush, where Jack McCall murdered Wild Bill Hickok during a poker game. Overnight here, and discover Deadwood’s Wild West ways as you walk in the footsteps of legends like Calamity Jane and Seth Bullock.

DEADWOOD–CODY.

Day
3

This morning, head through high country, where open-range cattle kings made war on the homesteaders in the 1890s. Drive past Sheridan and then ascend into the alpine region of the Bighorn Mountains, and site of the Battle of Tongue River. Overnight in Buffalo Bill’s frontier town of Cody.

Meals included:

  • Breakfast

CODY–YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK

Day
4

Proceed through Shoshone National Forest to YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK. Travel along Grand Loop Road to Artist Point for views of the Lower Falls of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. Overnight in Yellowstone National Park.
NOTES: Accommodations used by Cosmos in Yellowstone National Park are typically open from late May through late September. Departures before or after these opening dates will stay in West Yellowstone.
Routing and areas visited in Yellowstone National Park are always subject to favorable weather, gate access, and road conditions; therefore, routings may be adjusted.

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK

Day
5

Today, explore more of America’s first national park by returning to visit the geyser basins with bubbling mud paint pots and the reliable “blow” of Old Faithful. In addition to superb mountain scenery, the park is one of the world’s principal wildlife preserves and a photographer’s paradise.

YELLOWSTONE–GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK–JACKSON

Day
6

Head south into magnificent GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK, one of America’s last preserves of wild solitude. Its 13,770-foot-high ridges are crested with snow most of the year. Stroll along the shores of beautiful glacier-fed Jenny Lake before ending the day in the Wild West town of Jackson. This evening, join an optional barbecue cookout and Wild West show.

JACKSON–ALPINE

Day
7

The day is free in Jackson to explore the shops and museums of historic downtown. Overnight in Alpine located on the banks of the Snake River.

ALPINE–SALT LAKE CITY

Day
8

Today, travel to Salt Lake City, Utah’s vibrant capital. Set on the edge of Great Salt Lake Desert, this center of the Mormon religion is where Brigham Young declared to his followers, “This is the place.” An included sightseeing tour offers a glimpse of Temple Square, the Capitol Building, and the downtown area.

Meals included:

  • Breakfast

SALT LAKE CITY–BRYCE CANYON NATIONAL PARK

Day
9

Journey through sagebrush landscape to BRYCE CANYON NATIONAL PARK with its 20 miles of sandstone cliffs and ever-changing colors. See some of Earth’s most brilliant shades of rock, sculpted by nature into pillars called “hoodoos.”

Meals included:

  • Breakfast

BRYCE CANYON NATIONAL PARK–ZION NATIONAL PARK–LAKE POWELL PAGE

Day
10

First stop today is ZION NATIONAL PARK with its landscape carved over millions of years by rushing streams. Steep canyons, stone towers, and verdant vegetation form the scenery of Zion. Then, head east into Page on the shores of Lake Powell, originally built to house workers during the construction of the massive Glen Canyon Dam, which holds back the waters of 186-mile-long Lake Powell.

Meals included:

  • Continental Breakfast

PAGE–PAINTED DESERT–GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK

Day
11

Enjoy an optional flight over scenic Monument Valley. Then, cross the Painted Desert and head through Kaibab National Forest before arriving at GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK in the early afternoon. Marvel at one of the Natural Wonders of the World as you experience amazing views. You’ll have plenty of time to do some viewing before dusk, as your accommodation is inside the National Park.

GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK–LAS VEGAS

Day
12

For a once-in-a-lifetime thrill, take an optional helicopter flightseeing trip over the Grand Canyon, with incomparable views of flame-colored walls plunging 6,093 feet into the Colorado River. Leaving the high country of Arizona, we pass through Williams on famous Route 66, and then the old Mojave gold-strike country, which still has traces of century-old ghost towns. Arrive in downtown Las Vegas—a neon desert oasis with spectacular hotels and casinos and the popular Fremont Street Expereince.

LAS VEGAS

Day
13

Your vacation ends this morning. You can extend vacation with extra nights and explore “Sin City” further.

Things to note

On vacations that include an overnight stay in Las Vegas, at least one member of the traveling party must be 21 years of age or older.

This vacation visits national parks and other remote locations where facilities may not be up to the standard you expect from Cosmos. Some lodges within the parks do not have air-conditioning, televisions, and other amenities you would expect from most Cosmos hotels.

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