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Grand Canyon & California Family Holiday

A family road trip taking in some of Western USA's biggest hitters: Las Vegas & the Grand Canyon, Death Valley, Yosemite and then ending in the spirited city of San Francisco.

Tailor-made Classic 2 weeks

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Itinerary

Overview

  • See the Grand Canyon from the Skywalk
  • Visit the hottest valley on earth
  • Go for a private guided hike in Yosemite
  • Cycle the Golden Gate Bridge
This holiday begins in the city of neon and casinos; Las Vegas. Staying in a non-gaming hotel just off the strip, you will base yourself here to experience the bright lights and to recover from jet lag before heading off for an exhilarating day of amazing scenery and thrills at the Grand Canyon West. A visit to the see-through skywalk is a must and you also have the option of a day's rafting on the Colorado River at the bottom of the Canyon, before catching a helicopter ride to the top.

From the dizzy heights of the Grand Canyon, you will then head off to California to one of the lowest and hottest places on earth; Death Valley. In this barren landscape, summer temperatures regularly hit the high 40'sC, so you will want to spend the middle of the day inside and save exploring for the evening and early morning. Zabriskie Point offers some spectacular views and at Badwater you have the opportunity to walk out on a boardwalk over vast salt flats.

After the heat of Death Valley, you then drive over the mountains into Yosemite, where you will be based in a lodge just outside of the National Park. Forming a stark contrast to the desert you have just been in, the lodge is set amongst pine trees. From your base, you will have the opportunity to explore the park at your leisure, highlights include the amazing viewpoints, wild swimming in the rivers and the Giant Sequoia trees. On one of your days you will have a private guided hike, when you will be taken well away from the crowds to quiet trails, so you can experience the beauty in solitude.

From Yosemite, you then drive to San Francisco, which will be your last stop on your holiday. Here you can enjoy the diverse food on offer and explore the waterfront, Alcatraz and cycle across the Golden Gate Bridge. This city really does have something for everyone.

Day-by-day

Brief Itinerary
Day 1 Arrive Las Vegas
Day 2 Las Vegas
Day 3 Day at Grand Canyon West
Day 4 Drive to Death Valley
Day 5 Death Valley
Day 6 Drive to Yosemite
Day 7 Yosemite
Day 8 Yosemite - Guided Hike
Day 9 Yosemite
Day 10 Drive to San Francisco
Day 11 San Francisco
Day 12 San Francisco
Day 13 San Francisco
Day 14 Depart

Full Itinerary
Day 1 Arrive Las Vegas
After arriving in Las Vegas, you will pick up your hire car and drive to your hotel where we suggest you take it easy and recover from your flight.

Day 2 Las Vegas
Las Vegas is full of sights and given the right attitude, is a fun place to explore. Children are allowed to walk through casinos, but are not permitted to gamble, or stop and watch gambling. Activities families may enjoy include visiting a water park, watching the circus acts at Circus Circus and visiting the Adventure Dome theme park.

Day 3 Day at Grand Canyon West
Today we suggest you get up early and drive to Grand Canyon West. Not actually part of the Grand Canyon National Park, this part of the Grand Canyon is owned by the Hualapai Nation. A visit to the see-through skywalk is a must and you also have the option of a day's rafting on the Colorado River at the bottom of the Canyon, before catching a helicopter ride to the top.

Day 4 Drive to Death Valley
This morning you will depart Las Vegas for Death Valley National Park; a barren and stark desert holding the record for the America's hottest temperature (57C) Summer temperatures regularly hit the high 40'sC, so you will want to spend the middle of the day inside and save exploring for the evening and early morning. There is a visitor's centre in Furnace Creek where you will be able to get advice on the highlights of the area. Zabriskie Point offers some spectacular views and at Badwater you have the opportunity to walk out on a boardwalk over vast salt flats.

Day 5 Death Valley
Today you have the day to explore Death Valley.

Day 6 Drive to Yosemite
Today you will drive to Yosemite, crossing the spectacular Tioga Pass. Be sure to stop and admire the views at Olmsted Point, from where you will be able to see the Half Dome.

Day 7 Yosemite
Today is a free day. You might want to relax around your lodge, or perhaps venture into the park for some hiking. After a long drive yesterday, a swim in the pool is highly recommended!

Day 8 Yosemite - Guided Hike
You will meet your guide in the Yosemite Valley in the morning. You will have a full day together. Depending on what your preferences are, you can either go for a day hike, or a gentler walk taking in some of the less well known areas of the park.

Day 9 Yosemite
You might want to go back into the Valley today to visit some of the famous viewpoints in the park. Glacier Point is a particularly beautiful spot with jaw dropping views of the Half Dome. Don't forget your swimming costumes, as there are several opportunities for river swimming along the way; the perfect way to cool off.

Day 10 Drive to San Francisco
Today you will drive to San Francisco. The drive will take 3 - 4 hours.

Days 11 - 13 San Francisco
You have three days at leisure in San Francisco. Don't miss the Golden Gate Bridge, sealions on pier 39 and a ferry ride in the Bay. You might also want to consider driving out to the wine regions and spending a day touring the winelands.

Day 14 Depart

Accommodation


Guide price is based on recommended accommodations. Alternative accommodations and upgrades are available. Please get in touch or click on 'alternatives' below for alternatives and upgrade options.

Our rating

9/10

Price guide

Price rating 4

- Excellent family choice
- Walking distance from the strip
- Sophisticated, smart and safe
- Roof terrace & pool

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 3

- Prime position in Death Valley
- 2 swimming pools

Our rating

9/10

Price guide

Price rating 4

- Delightful cabin accommodation
- Forest location
- On the edge of Yosemite
- Large swimming pool

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 4

- Good value hotel
- Union Square Location
- Modern rooms
- Swimming Pool

Details

Safety

For the latest travel advice from the Foreign and Commonwealth office check www.gov.uk/travelaware

What customers are saying after travelling with Tourdust

Average Rating

based on 496 reviews

(4.96/5)

  • Everything was fab, I especially loved Tuningi such a special place and my son got to see his favourite animal the cheetah (after a bit of time hunting about on foot!). Mauritius is lovely we saw quite a bit of the island in the end.

    MissingLaura L reviewing South Africa Safari and Mauritius on 12 December 2018

  • We had a wonderful trip to Morocco. What a fascinating country. Thank you so much for all of your help making things smooth and less stressful!

    Here are a few things we wanted to pass on:

    Dar Housnia was absolutely delightful. It was like an entire wing of a house to ourselves with perfect Moroccan decor. The private area where we ate was so cute, the riad staff so accommodating. I loved waking in the cozy space with our family and hearing both call to prayer as well as roosters. Just perfect.

    I was a little unclear how to ask what time we were being picked up etc, but your office promptly replied to my emails - even on weekends- when we had these questions about transport times. Once, we met our guide in Imlil these details we not problematic as our guide “Abraham” totally took care of us. Abraham was awesome. You should definitely request him again in the future. He was young (29)and energetic. He had a ton of hiking experience in Imlil as he was from there. He also seemed to know everything else about morocco, the desert, the culture, etc, etc. He was approachable, kind, patient, great with our kids and answered SO MANY of our questions.

    The hike was lovely - after rain the day prior in Marrakech - there was snow in the mountains. It was gorgeous. We may have been up for a longer hike up Mt Taboukel if I had known this was a realistic option for families ( I thought from reading that it was too technical for us). Yet not sure we had enough days for all these things always since getting in the desert was a priority.

    The mountain house, Dar adar, was just as described… very basic. The wifi was broken (which was a nice break when you have pre-teens addicted to phones, plus my husband called no wifi an amenity to not be available by email for his work!)). There was no heat and the fireplace helped a tad - but was so very cold in the rooms. My husband loved the rustic space, I may have gone up one step in niceness of mountain accommodation if I had to do it over again. Yet, meeting the other families in this Dar Adar (including another Tourdust family from England) made this house very memorable.

    We were then joined by our driver for the next several days, Jamal. What a fun guy and a perfect driver. He could joke with my kids, he had a fun smile, and he had worked with Abraham before so they were a great team. The drive to desert was long as I knew it would be. It was nice to have the stop on way there near Ait Ben Haddu. The drive back from desert was long. It was more near 10 hours of driving (plus 1 hour at lunch = 11 hours) but I wouldn’t have made any different choices.

    The luxury desert camp was far and away the highlight of our trip. The tents were adorable, I was sufficiently warm even at night inside the tent. We loved the camel riding, the ATV vehicles at a nearby camp, sunsets on the dunes, music around the camp fire, meals with others at the camp and more.

    The last night was at Riad Jona. This was so very very lovely. The food was amazing - such a good idea to eat here after our long drive back to Marrakech. They had a small dining pool plus a hot tub which was delightful. It was almost more of a boutique hotel as it had several rooms.

    MissingGwyneth R reviewing Luxury Family Desert Holiday on 11 December 2018

  • The trip was amazing everything was better than we could have imagined.
    There was a moment climbing the mount Kenya where my wife accused me of tricking her into doing this (half kidding) as some of the nights got pretty cold, but we were dressed well and the sunrise at the peak was astonishing.
    Safari was spectacular, Ben who was our main guide and driver was awesome! We saw everything excepts rhinos which were more of a hope than a reality. We also were able to watch a rock python eat a Thompson gazel live. It was one of the most interesting and unsettling things I have ever seen.
    Just overall, so many moments that make you think wow or I can't believe I am here. Thank you for your help in getting everything set up. I don't believe I could have booked the trip without your help and guidance. It was an amazing way to start our marriage and truly the trip of a lifetime!

    MissingWilliam Kearns reviewing 11 Day Mount Kenya Trek and Masai Mara Safari Combined on 29 October 2018

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Alternative Itineraries

Our itineraries are carefully designed by our experienced travel designers based on years of experience and customer feedback. For a custom itinerary tailored to you, please enquire giving as much detail as possible on your brief.

Live the Californian dream on the ultimate road trip, exploring San Francisco and the beaches of the Pacific Coast.

Tailor-made Classic 2 weeks

Families from $1,199 pp plus flights

'From Price' is the average price per person for ground arrangements for a family of four (two adults + two children under 12).

Flights are typically an additional $1,403 per person economy class from London

Visit theme parks in LA, then explore Yosemite before ending your holiday in San Francisco.

Tailor-made Classic 2 weeks

Families from $1,248 pp plus flights

'From Price' is the average price per person for ground arrangements for a family of four (two adults + two children under 12).

Flights are typically an additional $1,442 per person economy class from London

Cycle the Golden Gate Bridge, raft the Colorado River, see the Grand Canyon & enjoy the bright lights of Las Vegas.

Tailor-made Classic 2 weeks

Families from $1,470 pp plus flights

'From Price' is the average price per person for ground arrangements for a family of four (two adults + two children under 12).

Flights are typically an additional $1,276 per person economy class from London

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