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Spirit of the South

Operated By:
Tour Pace: Leisurely
Tour Style: First Class
17 Days from $4,388 per person

Float like a butterfly in your Blue Suede Shoes as you pay homage to the Kings of the Ring and Rock 'n' Roll—tracing Tennessee's jazz and juke joints and the bourbon and bluegrass plains of Kentucky horse-racing country along this Deep South musical meander to The Big Easy.

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  1. Welcome to Atlanta. At 6 p.m. gather with your Travel Director and fellow travelers for a Welcome Reception.
    hotel:Sheraton Atlanta
  2. Explore Atlanta as you make your way to the CNN Studios to join an Inside CNN VIP Tour for a behind-the-scenes experience at the Global Headquarters of CNN Worldwide.
    hotel:Renaissance Asheville
  3. Start the day with a guided visit to George Vanderbilt's 250-room Biltmore Estate. Next, head for Great Smoky Mountains National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Stop at the Visitors' Center and explore 19th century wilderness settlement life with a Local Specialist. Also visit the Museum of the Cherokee Indian.
    meal(s):FB, D
    hotel:The Park Vista – a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel
  4. A full day at leisure for optional activities. Go walking, cycling or visit Dollywood.
  5. Stand in awe at Cumberland Gap National Historical Park and continue through Kentucky into Lexington. Delve into equine culture at the Kentucky Horse Park, a working horse farm. Explore the world renowned International Museum of the Horse, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution.
    hotel:Hyatt Regency Lexington
  6. Visit Old Friends, a horse retirement farm, and Cultural Insight, where you will meet equine residents. Next, travel along the Bourbon Trail to Buffalo Trace Distillery, the world's most award-winning distillery, for an insider's look into the behind-the-scenes work that goes into crafting truly great bourbon, tasting a sample of the final product. Continue on to Louisville where you are treated to a Be My Guest dinner after meeting Mr. Rahaman Ali (Muhammad Ali's younger brother) for a guided visit of their Childhood Home Museum.
    meal(s):FB, BG
  7. Head to Churchill Downs, the legendary thoroughbred racetrack that has hosted The Kentucky Derby since 1875. And then you're off to visit the Kentucky Derby Museum. The afternoon is at leisure before Regional Meal of authentic Kentucky cuisine.
    meal(s):FB, RM
  8. Stop at the Corvette Museum showcasing the American sports car, the Chevrolet Corvette. This afternoon arrive in Nashville to meet your new travel companions.
    hotel:Renaissance Nashville
  9. At RCA's Studio B this morning, ‘meet' another music legend with a Cultural Insight into the life and music of Johnny Cash during a private performance of Cash tunes with Johnny and June's son, John Carter Cash (or a family member). Visit the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum—a collection of memorabilia from stars such as Hank Williams and Garth Brooks. Later, embark on a your choice sightseeing experience, exploring the Johnny Cash Museum or a tour of the Ryman Auditorium.
  10. Write your own song of the South on a full day at leisure before heading to the Grand Ole Opry.
  11. Head for the birthplace of Rock 'n' Roll on Beale Street where we meet a musician and Local Specialist to learn about the musical heritage of Memphis. The former Lorraine Hotel, where civil rights activist Martin Luther King, Jr. was gunned down, is the backdrop for the National Civil Rights Museum, where we visit before a free evening.
    hotel:Sheraton Memphis Downtown
  12. Head to Graceland, a tribute to the man who changed the face of American popular music and culture. Pay a visit to Sun Studios, where the first Rock 'n' Roll single was recorded in 1951. Tonight, embark on a your choice dining experience where you choose from a selection of local eateries.
    meal(s):FB, YC
  13. Tour the Memphis Rock 'n' Soul Museum before heading to Natchez. Tonight, enjoy a Be My Guest dinner beginning at the private residence of Joe Stone, whose 1850s home features a gallery collection of rare maps, a quaint billiards hall, and exquisite ornamental glasswork. Joe performs on his Steinway grand piano before heading to the 1804 residence of Esther Carpenter, a former Four Seasons chef, with whom you'll enjoy a traditional four-course Deep South dinner.
    meal(s):FB, BG
    hotel:Natchez Grand
  14. Join costumed Local Specialists at Frogmore Plantation and Gins, before meandering through the charming Louisiana countryside to Oak Alley Plantation. The spicy scents of Creole cuisine linger on this evening's visit to the New Orleans School of Cooking where we will enjoy a fun cooking demonstration before a Regional Meal.
    meal(s):FB, RM
    hotel:Sheraton New Orleans
  15. Trace the cosmopolitan history of New Orleans with a Local Specialist, stopping at City Park and one of the famous above-ground cemeteries. Spend the afternoon at leisure.
  16. Today is free before joining your Travel Director and new friends for a Farewell Dinner at the famed Court of Two Sisters.
    meal(s):FB, FD
  17. Take a transfer to New Orleans International Airport or extend your stay in New Orleans at the Sheraton New Orleans.

30 Day Refund Guarantee

We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

Meal Summary

16 nights, 16 full breakfasts, 7 dinners, On-trip transport, .

Included Highlights

Hidden Treasure

  • Enjoy at least one surprise Hidden Treasure

Cultural Insight

  • Visit Old Friends Thoroughbred Retirement Farms which is raising awareness for all equines in need. Delve into the life and foot-tapping tunes of Johnny Cash with a member of his family.

Be My Guest

  • Spend the evening with Muhammad Ali's brother after a visit to the boxing great's Childhood Home Museum. Join Joe and Esther for an evening of true southern hospitality and an opportunity to explore the sights and sounds of two beautiful Natchez estates

Local Specialist

  • For sightseeing in the Smoky Mountains, in Memphis, on a reconstructed cotton plantation and in New Orleans

Sightseeing Highlights

  • City tour in Memphis, New Orleans
  • Orientation of Atlanta, Asheville and Nashville
  • Visit CNN Studios, Biltmore Estate, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Kentucky Horse Park or International Museum of the Horse, Buffalo Trace Distillery, Churchill Downs, Kentucky Derby Museum, Corvette Musuem, RCA's Studio B, the Country Music Hall of Fame, National Civil Rights Museum, Graceland, Rock 'n' Soul Museum, Oak Alley Plantation, Frogmore Plantation, Cumberland Gap, Grand Ole Oprey, Sun Studios
  • Definite Departure
Depart Date Return Date Price Discount Availability Price
23 May 18 8 Jun 18 checkmark $4,875$4,388pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
30 May 18 15 Jun 18 $4,875$4,388pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
12 Sep 18 28 Sep 18 checkmark $4,875$4,388pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
19 Sep 18 5 Oct 18 $4,875$4,388pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
31 Oct 18 16 Nov 18 $4,875$4,388pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now

Price is per person and is based on two people sharing a twin bedded room. Single rooms are available at a supplement.

Room Share: Guaranteed Room Share is not available on this trip.

Single Room Supplement: from $1950 p.p.

Gratuities: Option to pre-pay gratuities for Travel Director and Driver $179 per person.

Early Payment Discount: Pay in full to save the amount listed above. For details, click here.

AARP Members are entitled to an exclusive Member Benefit Discount on all Grand European Travel vacations. Plus receive a free travel gift!  Call Toll Free: 1-866-847-3858 for details.

Past Travelers: Save an additional 5% off the Land Only price of the vacation..


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