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This small-group tour of 17 guests is made for the ACTIVE traveler and includes walking and hiking most days. Hikes range from gentle to strenuous, so a reasonable level of fitness is recommended to make the trip more enjoyable.
This small-group tour of 17 guests is made for the ACTIVE traveler and includes walking and hiking most days. Hikes range from gentle to strenuous, so a reasonable level of fitness is recommended to make the trip more enjoyable.Learn More
Welcome to Sacramento, California’s capital city and jumping off point for your Northern California vacation. Join your Travel Director and fellow travelers for a Welcome Reception and toast to an epic week of iconic sites and hidden gem experiences in the Golden State.
Kick-off the first full day of your California tour with a scenic drive along the Sacramento River. Get out and stretch your legs at the Oroville Dam, the tallest dam in the United States at 770 feet high and once called the ninth wonder of the world. You’ll arrive refreshed and ready for more with a Dive Into Culture adventure at Lassen National Park’s Kohm Yah-mah-nee (meaning “Snow Mountain”) Visitor Center. Enjoy an introduction to this best-kept-secret national park over lunch and a visit to its exhibit hall before there’s time for exploring. Then you’re off to the Sulphur Works, a hydrothermal area at the center of a wide basin surrounded by towering volcanic peaks of Brokeoff Mountain, Mount Diller, Pilot Pinnacle, and Mount Conard. Learn how these peaks are remnants of a large, eroded volcano as you see all four rock types (shield, composite, cinder cone, and plug dome) from the volcanoes. You’ll feel like a geologist “time traveling” through the Earth’s surface. Take your newfound knowledge to the trail embarking on (weather dependent) the three-mile Bumpass Hell Trail getting up close to the largest hydrothermal area in the park. Watch the boiling cauldron gurgle and take in the surrounding rugged landscape before making your way back for a relaxed evening in your hotel.
Up and at ‘em this morning to continue your exploration of Lassen National Park on a guided hike to Kings Creek Falls. Wind your way on this 2.7-mile trail past a waterfall plenty of birdlife before stopping for lunch among the pines at the Manzanita Lake Visitor Center. Then the choice is yours on how you’d like to see more of the park: take the 1.9-mile Manzanita Lake Loop trail, visit the Loomis Museum, or kayak Manzanita Lake soaking in fantastic views of Lassen Peak—one of the largest plug dome volcanoes in the world. Reconnect with your small group for an afternoon of dramatic falls and stunning lava. Head to McCarthur-Burney Falls Memorial State Park to feel the spray from the majestic 129-foot Burney Falls. Discover how this mist-filled basin is created from underground springs and, as you breathe in the evergreen forest, that the park is also part of the iconic Pacific Crest Trail. Learn how some of the water comes from the park's underground springs to create a mist-filled basin. Breathe in the park's evergreen forest shared by hikers of the iconic Pacific Crest Trail that passes through the park. Your highlight of the day—and perhaps the week—will surely be exploring the underground world of the Subway Cave’s lava tube. Grab your flashlight and take to the self-guided 1/3 mile-trail through a dark cave. As you explore this darkened wonder, consider how the cave was formed 20,000 years ago by the lava of the Hat Creek flow.
You’ll feel like a pioneer heading out this morning for the Gold Country of Lake Tahoe. But first, you’ll need some tasty snacks for the journey. Stop at Quincy's Co-Op where your Travel Director will pick up a picnic lunch of fresh salad fixin’s, one the deli’s hearty sandwiches, or flavorful pasta or green salads. Then stroll along Quincy’s main street where you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into the early 1850's when gold lured people from all over to this small, now historic, town located in one of the richest gold mining regions in the world. Then you’re off! Make your way through gold country up the Sierra Nevada Mountains to Lake Tahoe—the largest alpine freshwater lake in North America. You’ll arrive at Emerald Bay State Park, of one of the most scenic parts of Lake Tahoe, to sit back and sip and savor your picnic lunch with newfound friends as you bask in the blue waters of this glacier-formed lake surrounded by expansive alpine peaks and the dramatic views of one of the most scenic parts of Lake Tahoe. Taking in the lake’s beauty, you’ll understand why this homeland of the Washoe people is considered the center of the geographical and spiritual world. Conclude an epic day relaxing in the crystalline lake’s deep blue waters or enjoying dinner on your own.
Just when you thought your California road trip couldn’t be any more beautiful, today finds you taking the scenic high country Tioga Pass into UNESCO-listed Yosemite National Park. Traveling on one of the most scenic drives through the High Sierra, you’ll be entranced by the granite cliffs, pine forests, alpine lakes and meadows. Visit Mono Lake, an ancient saline lake at the eastern edge of the Sierra Nevada home to trillions of brine shrimp, birds, and world-famous tufa towers. You’ll be amazed at how these craggy, white limestone formations reach to the sky from the lake’s still waters. Stop to pick up a sandwich or salad for a relaxing picnic lunch at Tuolumne Meadows. After a leisurely lunch surrounded by nature’s stillness, explore the park on the 3.5-mile Tuolumne River Loop Trail, one of the highest rated hikes in the park. Then delve into the Yosemite Valley which boasts some of the tallest waterfalls in the world. Stop at Olmsted Point for expansive, eye-popping views of Clouds Rest and Half Dome as you wander among the gigantic boulders of its granite slopes. After experiencing some of California’s iconic sites, you’ll arrive at the exclusive cottages at Tenaya Lodge near Yosemite for your Stays With Stories experience, relaxed and ready to soak up its mountain charm.
Rise and shine in the Sierra Nevada Mountains for your second day in Yosemite. You’re in black bear country so keep your eyes peeled as you take a scenic drive through Yosemite Valley. Walk along the giants this morning, these trees are the biggest and some of the oldest living things on earth.Your next stop is Tunnel View to view the tumbling Bridalveil falls and El Capitan. Stop for lunch at Yosemite Falls and take an easy walk along a grove of Ponderosa pines, dogwood, wildflowers, sugar pines to the lower falls to North America's tallest waterfall, Yosemite Falls. After a big morning, you’re in for an incredible MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience meeting a climber and naturalist at the Yosemite Conservancy. You'll learn the history of climbing in Yosemite through stories, photographs, and having a look at real climbing gear from a local professional who knows the land firsthand—feeling good knowing that you're supporting the conservancy’s mission to improve trails, restore habitat, and protect wildlife. Cap off the day by joining your Travel Director and new friends for a Farewell Dinner at the Tenaya Lodge.
Make your way down the Sierra Nevada mountains through San Joaquin Valley. Stop at the Fruit Barn savouring the area’s bounty before continuing into the "Bread bowl of America." For a grand finish, Connect With Locals and enjoy a Be My Guest lunch at the 100-year old family-owned, organic Heringer Estates vineyard. You’ll learn the unique characteristics of the land and how the estate helps to provide a habitat for rehabilitated owls. Happy and adventured-filled, say a fond farewell to the group before you head to the Sacramento airport around 4:00 pm.
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Email Sign-up Travel Credit: Receive a $125 per person ($250 per couple) discount toward your first tour (operated by Trafalgar or Insight Vacations) when you sign up for GET emails; valid for each full-paying adult who signs up with a unique email address. Valid for new bookings only made through December 31, 2023 for travel through December 31, 2023; full payment is due within three days of booking. Discount is not combinable with any other discount or offer, including our GETAWAY Deals, Limited Time Offers, AARP member discount, Past Traveler discount or Multiple Trip discounts. Offer cannot be booked online. Savings not valid on all itineraries and/or departure dates, are subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Offer excludes Edinburgh Tattoo and Floriade departures. GET reserves the right to validate bookings and will remove any additional offers added online that are not combinable. Other conditions may apply.