Come and explore the Golden West on this affordable vacation through California, Arizona, and Nevada. You’ll begin in Los Angeles for guided sightseeing in the “City of Angels.” Take a drive through Hollywood and see the legendary TCL Chinese Theater, the Dolby Theater, and the Walk of Fame along Hollywood Boulevard. Stroll through Farmers Market, with more than 140 shops and eateries. Travel through the California desert to Palm Springs, and spend the night in this desert oasis. Continue on to Scottsdale in the arid Arizona climate, and visit Old Town where Western storefronts create an aura of the past. Visit the red-rock town of Sedona, and pass through scenic Oak Creek Canyon and the San Francisco Mountains for a day at the glorious Grand Canyon. Cross the Mohave Desert for two nights in the bright lights of Las Vegas. Try your hand at the blackjack table, play the slot machines, or ask your Tour Director for expert suggestions for dining and shopping. Continue to majestic Yosemite National Park to explore its spectacular lakes, cascading waterfalls, giant sequoia trees, and giant granite domes. On to the “Golden Gate City” of San Francisco for sightseeing, including the Golden Gate Bridge, Nob Hill, and Fisherman’s Wharf. Take in the spectacular seaside settings of Monterey and Carmel. Keep an eye out for sea lions and otters off the Old Fisherman’s Wharf, and visit Cannery Row—made famous by John Steinbeck’s novel. Spend free time visiting the outstanding Monterey Aquarium. Drive along legendary 17-Mile Drive to the storybook setting of Carmel by the Sea. Take in the spectacular coastal scenery along the rugged stretch of Big Sur to visit Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park in the cathedral-like beauty of the California Redwoods. Visit the charming Danish village of Solvang with its Dutch windmills, bakeries, and restaurants. Travel further down the Pacific coastline to Santa Barbara for a photo stop at the historic mission and pier. Return to the L.A. area and stroll the boardwalk on the Santa Monica Pier. Celebrate with a walk on the beach to conclude your value-minded vacation in the American West!
Location: Los Angeles
Welcome to Los Angeles! Your Tour Director is on hand late this afternoon to answer any questions.
Location: Los Angeles
Begin the day with a sightseeing tour of Tinseltown. Drive through Hollywood and see the historic TCL Chinese Theatre. A historic gem, this world-famous cinema (formerly, Grauman’s) has hosted some of the most exclusive movie premieres in Hollywood history. The Dolby Theater (formerly the Kodak Theater) is the first permanent home of the glamorous Academy Awards. See the Hollywood Walk of Fame, where iconic terrazzo stars grace block after city block of Hollywood Boulevard. Explore The Original Farmers Market, with more than 140 shops and restaurants. The remainder of your day is at leisure; your Tour Director will have suggestions for further exploration of the city.
Location: Los Angeles–Palm Springs
Journey to the desert oasis of Palm Springs. Ever since Hollywood stars first came here in the 1930’s laying claim to ranch-style estates and holding up in elite hotels, the clean dry air and sunshine have made Palm Springs irresistible.
Location: Palm Springs–Scottsdale
Travel through cacti-covered desert towards Old Town Scottsdale where Western storefronts create an aura of the past. Afterward, enjoy free time to explore a taste of the Old West with restaurants, shopping, and Western bars. With wooden beams, wagon wheels, and cowboy hats abundant, you will feel like you have traveled back in time to the era of outlaws and saloons.
Location: Scottsdale–Sedona–Grand Canyon National Park–Williams
First stop today is a visit to Sedona, a center for Southwestern and New Age arts. Climb through Oak Creek Canyon with its weather-sculpted formations of dramatic, color-tinted crags. Then pass by the San Francisco Mountains and beautiful pine forests to the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. For a once-in-a-lifetime experience, take our optional helicopter flightseeing excursion for incomparable views of flame-colored walls plunging 6,093 feet into the Colorado River. Stay overnight in Williams, a picturesque mountain town with Route 66 as the main street.
Location: Williams–Las Vegas
Cross the old Mohave gold-strike country, that still has traces of century-old ghost towns set in the natural desert beauty. Look out for Joshua trees, a species of the lily family that grows to 40 feet high and can live for more than 300 years. Today’s destination is the man-made oasis in the Nevada desert that is Las Vegas, a fantastic city of feverish gambling, neon lights, and glamorous shows. An orientation tour upon arrival shows off many of the themed casino resorts along the colorful “Strip.”
Location: Las Vegas
The day is free for exploring on your own. Your Tour Director will have plenty of activities to choose from and will recommend favorite restaurants and shopping areas.
Location: Las Vegas–Tulare
Departing the neon lights of Las Vegas, we continue across the desert landscape of Nevada before crossing into California. See the vast Mojave Desert, which covers one-fifth of California. Pass through the agricultural land and overnight in Tulare in the central San Joaquin Valley.
Location: Tulare–Yosemite National Park–Merced
This morning, we enter Yosemite National Park, a wonderland of spectacular lakes, giant granite domes, towering pinnacles, cascading waterfalls, and lush forests. Afterward, drive to Merced.
Location: Merced–San Francisco
This morning, we continue west to the “Golden Gate City” of San Francisco, famous for its cable cars. After lunch, included sightseeing takes in the spectacular Golden Gate Bridge, Nob Hill, and bustling Fisherman’s Wharf.
Location: San Francisco
The day is free for you to explore more of this fascinating city. Choose from a variety of optional excursions or visit fascinating Alcatraz Prison. Get a close-up look at the infamous federal penitentiary that was off limits to the public for years. NOTE:Consider advance ticket purchase for Alcatraz Island with the National Park Service.
Location: San Francisco–17 Mile Drive–Carmel–Monterey
This morning, travel south to picturesque Monterey, which was once Spain’s Californian capital. Visit Monterey Harbor’s historic Old Fisherman’s Wharf to look for sea lions and otters, then visit Cannery Row, made famous by John Steinbeck’s novel of the same name. During your free time, consider an unforgettable visit to Monterey Bay Aquarium—known for its interactive exhibits and teeming sea life. Later, take in the spectacular Pacific Ocean waves from legendary 17-Mile Drive and the rugged Pacific coastline en route to Carmel Bay. Nestled in a pine forest beside the picturesque coastline, Carmel by the Sea is a storybook setting not to be missed.
Location: Monterey–Big Sur Highway–Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park–San Luis Obispo–Solvang
Today, you will experience one of the most beautiful coastlines anywhere in the world—Big Sur. Experience stunning views, redwood forests, and the Pacific Ocean crashing below. Keep your camera handy, as there will be plenty of scenic photo stops. Visit, Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, nicknamed “mini Yellowstone.” Experience the deep shade and cathedral-like beauty of California Redwoods, while surrounded by peaks that tower high above the Big Sur River Gorge. Enjoy time in San Luis Obispo before making your way to Solvang, where Denmark has been recreated with picturesque buildings and windmills. There’s time to walk the flower-lined village streets and enjoy the “Old World” architecture. Tasty bakery treats and perhaps a Danish smorgasbord for dinner all add to the unique experience.
Location: Solvang–Santa Barbara–Santa Monica–Los Angeles
From Solvang, it’s a short drive south to coastal Santa Barbara. Sightseeing includes a photo stop at the historic mission and a visit to the pier. There’s time to wander along the bustling waterfront or do some shopping in some of the most talked-about boutiques in downtown Santa Barbara. Next, we make our way to the Santa Monica Pier and the ultimate Southern California beach. Afterward, guests with outbound flights will head to Los Angeles International Airport. Please schedule flights after 5 pm.
Prices for sole occupancy are available on request
A forward-thinking young Italian named Antonio Mantegazza started it all back in 1928, when he purchased a rowboat to transport visitors across Lake Lugano in Switzerland. Big things come from small beginnings and as Antonio grew his business their sister company Globus was born, and from that came Cosmos in 1961.
Across the decades there were some questionable brochure covers as well as fashion choices, but most of all it was fantastic holidays at great prices. And while they’ve ditched the flares and polo necks, they’re still determined to give you superb holidays at the best prices.
They want to take you on your best holidays, full of memorable experiences and pinch-yourself moments in thrilling destinations around the world. Whether you’re cruising down a jungle river in Thailand, standing on a lava field in Iceland, or stargazing in the deserts of Western USA, they want to place you in these perfect settings.>
Cosmos offer a huge selection of tours, from classic, platinum or small group escorted tours, to private groups and single centre tours. Travel with like-minded people and get the best access to the must-see sights, and the local favourites you might have missed. Touring is a great way to see the world: they'll take away the admin and organisation headaches of your holiday, and all you have to do is soak up all the history, culture and experiences.