Celebrate the long history of great American music on this fascinating tour across the Deep South - from Nashville, home of Country, to the Blues, Soul and Rock 'n' Roll of Memphis and the jazz of New Orleans. This tour is operated by our sister company Rail Discoveries.
Begin your exploration of the American Deep South with an outbound flight to Atlanta, transferring to your overnight hotel on arrival.
Your first full day in the United States begins with a visit to the Martin Luther King Center. One of Atlanta's most famous sons, the Center provides a fascinating insight into the Civil Rights leader and the political repercussions of his famous movement in 20th century America. You also visit Ebenezer Baptist Church, where both King and his father were pastors. You then depart for nearby Chattanooga.
Upon arrival in Chattanooga, transfer to the Tennessee Valley Railway Museum for an insight into the long and grand history of the great American railroad aboard a 'rolling museum'. The locomotive gives an insight into the history of the American railroad through the ages. Later, continue to your hotel, where you spend the night.
This morning, begin your journey to Nashville by coach. Along the way, you take a detour to the Jack Daniel's Distillery for a tour and a look at how this iconic beverage is made. From there, continue on your journey towards Nashville, arriving in late afternoon and check into the Holiday Inn Express Downtown, which boasts an enviable location right in the heart of Nashville.
Tonight is at leisure, so perhaps you may like to visit one of the many live music venues and bars located around the city? Nashville is famed for its live music scene, and there is no better way to get a taste of its musical heritage than an evening of live entertainment.
You begin your exploration of the 'Birthplace of Country Music' with a visit to the Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum and the renowned Studio B.
This evening there is an optional excursion to the legendary Grand Ole Opry music venue for some incredible live performances. The Grand Ole Opry is a heavyweight venue in the country music world, having been founded in the mid-1920s. It has hosted all of the stars of the genre, including Dolly Parton and Garth Brooks.
Depart for Memphis today, and transfer to your hotel for a two night stay. Tonight, you may like to visit one of the popular live music venues around the city. Beale Street's music scene draws the crowds in and it was here that the Delta Blues artists of the 20th century found a home before moving on to influence the world's musical tastes.
Head to BB King's Blues Club, the first of the late BB King's popular blues bars. Perhaps enjoy some of the authentic Memphis-style barbecue accompanied by some classic American music.
You begin today with a visit to Graceland, the famous mansion home of the late Elvis Presley. Enjoy a tour of the impressive estate, viewing the interiors as they were during Elvis' life here as well as much of his private car collection.
The tour provides wonderful insight into the man behind the stage persona. Then head to Sun Studios, one of the pioneering recording studios for rock music during the '60s.
Transfer to the station this morning and board the Amtrak service to New Orleans aboard the 'City of New Orleans' train. It is claimed that the blues spread along this route by rail.
The pretty, floral towns of Brookhaven and McComb lead into the exotic Cajun swamps of the Louisiana Bayou. Arriving in the mid-afternoon, check into your hotel in the city's vibrant French Quarter.
This morning starts with a walking tour of the bustling French Quarter, the inspiring Jackson Square and the 18th century St Louis Cathedral. New Orleans is a fascinating blend of Spanish, French, Creole and American influences, representative of the cultural melting pot that the city has since become.
You are then free this afternoon, perhaps to try some authentic Creole cooking.
After a free morning, board your flight at New Orleans airport and return to the UK, arriving on Day 10.
At Great Rail Journeys, they’ve been providing market-leading holidays for 45 years, making them true rail holiday specialists. Their itineraries combine comfortable hotels, exciting excursions, many delicious meals, leisure time, and fantastic rail experiences – from journeys on modern trains to heritage rail adventures.
Alongside their classic escorted rail holidays, they now have more choices than ever. Their European chartered cruises sail on fantastic vessels with sublime dining options and some of the largest cabin sizes in the industry, and their small groups tours give you access to unique destinations and experiences that wouldn’t be possible in a larger group.
The key elements of their holidays are quality and value. Everything you see is included in the price, and their itineraries are carefully crafted to make the most out of each destination. They use professional Tour Managers, informative local guides and convenient transport. On many tours, they include special touches such as opera visits, special meals, or farewell dinners.
As well as being the leading UK provider of escorted rail holidays, they have also won a number of awards, most recently being awarded the gold award for Best Rail Holiday Company at the 2018 British Travel Awards – a testament to their commitment to outstanding holidays.
They ensure the security of currency fluctuation as part of our price guarantee, so you know you’re getting the best value. They are members of the Association of Independent Tour Operators and flight-inclusive holidays are ATOL or ABTOT protected, while non-flight-inclusive holidays are protected by ABTOT.