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Colourful Trails of the Southwest 2014

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Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona, USATour Sedona by Jeep in Arizona, USAMesa Verde National Park in Colorado, USASanta Fe in New Mexico, USADelicate Arch in Arches National Park, USAMonument Valley in Arizona-Utah, USA
Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona, USA
Tour Sedona by Jeep in Arizona, USA
Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado, USA
Santa Fe in New Mexico, USA
Delicate Arch in Arches National Park, USA
Monument Valley in Arizona-Utah, USA
  • Duration: 9 Days
  • Rating: Read Reviews
  • Brochure: USA and Canada 2014
  • Style: Discovery
  • Description: Adventure in Red Rock Country, immerse yourself in the native American culture of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Taos Pueblo and travel the Million-Dollar Highway with priceless views of snow-capped peaks and shimmering alpine lakes on this tour of America's Southwest. Enjoy the convenience of open-air vehicles as you explore the awe-inspiring Monument Valley and dine on tasty traditional cuisine at a unique Navajo cookout on the valley floor.

Guest Experiences

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Trip Itinerary

  • Day 1


    Welcome to the Valley of the Sun! Check into your hotel, get acquainted and spend some time relaxing. At 6 p.m., gather at the hotel with your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception.

    Meal(s): (Welcome Reception)

    Hotel: Scottsdale Marriott Suites Old Town (F)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 2


    Leaving behind the Saguaro cacti of the Sonoran desert, ascend into the stunning red rock formations announcing your entrance to the artists' enclave of Sedona. If you like, trade your motorcoach for an optional rough-and-ready jeep on an adventure into Red Rock Country. Get a taste of the old cowboy days where you encounter stunning landscapes. Travel onward and be sure to have your camera ready as you near Oak Creek Canyon with its towering red cliffs and crystal pools. At the Grand Canyon, meet a Local Expert who walks you through the geologic life of the canyon.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: National Park Lodges (NP)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 3


    Rise early for an optional flightseeing tour over the Grand Canyon or spend more time in the National Park. You might experience a feeling of deja vu when you enter the wide-open expanse of Monument Valley—this scenic location has been preserved forever in classic films such as Stagecoach and The Searchers. Get up close and personal with the magnificent landscape of towering sandstone buttes and lovely desert vistas in special open-air vehicles accompanied by a guide. This evening, enjoy a unique Navajo cookout Highlight Dinner on the floor of Monument Valley before making your way to your hotel in Kayenta.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Highlight Dinner)

    Hotel: Hampton Inn Kayenta (MF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 4


    Travel east this morning through a mesmerising desert landscape before arriving at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Mesa Verde National Park at the edge of the San Juan National Forest. Between 600 and 1300 A.D., the Ancestral Puebloan people carved houses and entire communities out of the sandstone along the canyon walls. Tour some of the cliff-top buildings and look down at the massive Cliff House, the largest cliff dwelling in the world. Spend some time in the museum learning about the culture and traditions of this once-great civilisation. End your day's journey in the outdoor mecca of Moab.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast)

    Hotel: BW Plus Canyonlands Inn (F)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 5


    In magnificent Arches National Park, the wind and rain have eroded the sandstone into more than 2,000 natural arches; wander through a kaleidoscope of geologic time as you watch the morning light play upon the ancient, multi-coloured stone. Explore the shops and outfitters in Moab as you enjoy an afternoon on your own. This evening, venture along the Colorado River for an exclusive Be My Guest dinner experience at a sand beach along the river. The fading sunlight is framed by towering red sandstone cliffs above your head.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Be My Guest Dining)

  • Day 6


    Depart America's outdoor recreation capital for the "Switzerland of America." Friendly Ouray boasts classic Victorian architecture, awe-inspiring views and a homey, small-town vibe. Then it's time to take to the highway—the Million-Dollar Highway, that is—with its priceless views of snow-capped peaks and shimmering alpine lakes. Stake your claim in Silverton, a former silver mining camp that now occupies a spot on the National Registry of Historic Landmark Districts. Stroll the pleasant streets, seeing well-preserved Victorian homes, the pretty city hall and the Grand Imperial Hotel. If you like, take an optional ride from Silverton to Durango on the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, which operates coal-fired steam engines through the San Juan National Forest. Check in to your hotel, the Strater Hotel, an Authentic Accommodation. Opened in the late 1800s, the Strater Hotel became a popular winter retreat for Durango townsfolk who would close their homes for the winter and move into the hotel. It was the prominent social gathering venue before the silver panic  in the late 1800s temporarily closed its doors. The Roaring Twenties revived the property and though it is no longer a retreat for locals during the winter, many noted personages have made the Strater their home away from home, including western author Louis L'Amour.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast)

    Hotel: Strater Hotel (F)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 7


    Today, head south towards the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Taos Pueblo, an ancient site that has been continuously inhabited for more than 1,000 years by members of the Native American Pueblo people. Learn about the traditional lifestyle and beliefs of the Pueblo Indians and visit the striking adobe chapel of San Geronimo. Continue travelling along the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, the foothills of the Rockies, to the colourful artists' mecca of Santa Fe. Check in to the Inn & Spa at Loretto, an Authentic Accommodation, and a fixture in the Santa Fe community, opened in 1975.  Built on the site of the Sister's of Loretto girls' school, the Inn shares its grounds with the famed Loretto Chapel. It sits at the end of the Santa Fe trail and is ideally located just one block from the Plaza, steps from Canyon Road, museums, boutiques, shops, and restaurants. Views from the guestrooms include the breathtaking Sangre de Cristo Mountains, Saint Francis Basilica, the Loretto Chapel, the Cross of the Martyrs, and of course, the heart of the city. Your evening is free to visit some of the many galleries, sample the renowned Southwest cuisine or just admire the adobe architecture on the vibrant plaza.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast)

    Hotel: Inn & Spa at Loretto (SF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 8


    Embark on a private trolley tour to see the sights of Santa Fe and soak up the atmosphere of one of the West's most interesting towns—unparalleled in richness of history, heritage, arts and culture. Visit a local artist's studio and learn how this Local Expert captures the Southwest's magical light in his landscapes. Enjoy the afternoon on your own to explore old downtown, including the Eldorado Hotel, Loretto Chapel and St. Francis Cathedral. Perhaps do some shopping at a local gallery, follow in the footsteps of Kit Carson on a walking tour or pamper yourself in one of Santa Fe's elegant spas. This evening, gather with your Travel Director and travelling companions for a festive Farewell Dinner.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Farewell Dinner)

  • Day 9


    After breakfast this morning, bid farewell to your fellow travellers. Extend your stay in Santa Fe or take a complimentary transfer to Albuquerque Airport. Please do not schedule any flights before 1 p.m.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast)

What's Included

Insider Experiences

  • Be My Guest Delight in an exclusive dinner with wine at a sand beach along the Colorado River. Toast your host under the fading sunlight.
  • Hidden Treasure Enjoy at least one surprise Hidden Treasure experience, unique to your itinerary, courtesy of your expert Travel Director.
  • Local Expert Examine the multi-coloured rocks at the Grand Canyon with a specialist.
  • Local Expert Meet a landscape artist in Santa Fe.
  • Authentic Accommodation Experience the Strater Hotel where author Louis L'Amour penned many of his famous novels, inspired by the honky-tonk music and Old West atmosphere.
  • Authentic Accommodation Discover The Inn & Spa at Loretto, which embodies the culture of the Southwest, utilising adobe-style architecture and reflecting the true spirit and history of Santa Fe.

Sightseeing Highlights

  • ScottsdaleStay the night in the heart of this sophisticated resort town.
  • SedonaTake a fun journey by jeep into Red Rock Country.
  • Oak Creek CanyonSee shimmering waters, pine-forested bluffs and red sandstone formations.
  • Grand Canyon National ParkMarvel at the sights from the South Rim.
  • Monument ValleyTour the valley in open-air vehicles and enjoy a Navajo cookout on the valley floor.
  • Mesa Verde National ParkDiscover outstanding cliff dwellings.
  • MoabSpend some time in America's outdoor recreation capital.
  • Arches National ParkView amazing natural rock formations.
  • SilvertonStroll the streets of this historic town.
  • DurangoStay overnight in this classic Western town.
  • TaosImmerse yourself in Native American culture in this adobe settlement.
  • Santa FeSoak up the Southwest culture in America's oldest capital city.


  • 8 full breakfasts
  • 5 evening meals:
    • Welcome Reception with light appetisers and drinks with your Travel Director in Scottsdale
    • 1 three-course dinner
    • Navajo cookout Highlight Dinner in Monument Valley
    • Be My Guest dinner with wine in Moab
    • Farewell Dinner with wine in Santa Fe

Travel Highlights

  • Travel by luxury air-conditioned coach with reclining seats and an on-board restroom.
  • First Class hotel accommodation featuring twin rooms and private facilities.
  • Audio Headsets provided throughout your trip to enhance your included sightseeing experiences.
  • Complimentary keepsake photo and map.
  • The services of a professional Travel Director throughout your journey.
  • All hotel service charges and tips, baggage handling fees and local taxes included.
  • Airport transfers are provided on the first and last day of your guided trip
  • 8 nights First Class accommodation

Airport Transfers

  • For full details on transfers, please click here.
  • These prices are LAND-ONLY and are correct at the time of the website going live, however prices are subject to confirmation at the time
    of booking.
  • All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however prices and itineraries are subject to change, please confirm all details and final cost at time of booking.
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  • Hotels are subject to change.
  • * For single travellers purchasing the twin-share option, please note that there is a no smoking policy in all shared rooms. Solo travel is not accepted on guided Family Experiences holidays unless travelling as part of a family group. 
  • ^Twin-share option not available for trips to South America., Costa Rica, Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii or for any holiday & cruise combination, or in Asia and Eastern Mediterranean except Highlights of Turkey (without cruise) & Best of Turkey.

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