Home to multiple iconic landscapes and locations, from the Statue of Liberty standing proud on Ellis Island to the searing sands of the Nevada Desert used in movies across the decades, the United States of America is awe-inspiring on a whole other scale. Each state will entice you with its own unique personality and showcase what makes it an exciting place to be, whether that’s or the .
Although many holiday hotspots boast that they have something for everyone, nowhere has a better claim to this than America. There’s somewhere to suit every taste in the USA - woodland retreats with pristine lakes nearby, glamourous getaways in upmarket neighbourhoods, quaint towns quietly secluded away, metropolises that truly never sleep, and much, much more. America’s thrilling contemporary history has shaped each state into what it is today, with even a brief look back at the events in the past 100 years revealing fascinating details about the rich tapestry of America.
Residing next to the Potomac River is the captivating capital of the United States of America, home to many world-famous monuments, peerless collections of art and historical artefacts, and the White House. will take you into this fascinating city, where you can get a feel for the political heart of the United States and get a glimpse into its origins. History is very much alive here, brought to life through the world-class exhibits of the Smithsonian Museums and vividly remembered by the Vietnam and World War II Memorials. Many of these can be seen from the National Mall on the south side of the city, stretching on for almost 2 miles and is lined with gorgeous manicured gardens which compliments the nearby monuments with an understated beauty. If you fancy something a little lighter in tone then the United States Botanic Gardens are only a stone’s throw from the Capitol Building at the end of the National Mall, brimming with vibrant flowers and luscious foliage.
The Capital of the World, The Big Apple, The City that Never Sleeps – the magnificent City of New York is known around the world by many names. However, the words New York alone stir a sense of wonder in almost anyone, conjuring images of a thriving metropolis filled with neon lights, endless streams of iconic yellow taxis and numerous skyscrapers which stretch endlessly into the sky. New York symbolises the pinnacle of global culture, arts, finance and so much more, with their respective landmarks like Wall Street, Broadway and Times Square being household names. Out of all the sights and scenes you can see around New York City, no trip is complete without standing on top of the Empire State Building to look out over the skyline and take in the quintessential view of the city.
Starting out from humble origins as a mining town back in the 19th century, San Francisco has slowly grown to become one of the crown jewels along the West Coast of America. Colourful town houses, a vibrant arts culture and the rise of tech start-ups has put San Francisco on the map as the place to be. Trendy to a tee, you can find all sorts in this city – if seafood is your thing then be sure to check out Fisherman’s Wharf to taste some fresh crab, or if you’re more of a history buff then Alcatraz Prison is only a short ferry ride away. The feather in San Francisco’s cap is the Golden Gate Bridge, the famous suspension bridge which spans the strait which connects San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean and was once the longest and tallest suspension bridge in the world. If you join us on then you’ll also see Union Square which gives you a real sense of San Francisco’s nightlife and collaborative community culture.
Possibly the most famous natural sight in America and one of the seven natural wonders of the world, the Grand Canyon has been a popular destination for decades and is easily accessible from the historic Route 66 highway, a well-travelled tourist route which originally ran from Chicago all the way through to Santa Monica in Los Angeles County. The canyon itself is a visual spectacle of mind-boggling proportions as it drops down over a mile deep, with its cracks and crevices creating shadows which stretch and distort in the sun as it travels overhead. Viewing this from the south rim gives you the best possible vantage point to experience this natural wonder, or you could take a helicopter flight over the canyon to see its full beauty from a birds-eye view
Over in Keystone, South Dakota you can find the faces of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln carved into Mount Rushmore. These sculptures were designed, crafted and immortalised by just one man, with each president chosen to represent a different aspect of America’s past. Seeing the faces of such powerful figures sculpted into the granite rock looking down over the Black Hills is a formidable sight and stands as testament to just how revered these presidents were and still are to this day. gives you the opportunity to see Mount Rushmore up close, as well as loads more of the astonishing American wilderness.
Country music is the American spirit captured within a melody and lyrics, with songs penned by Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson and Glen Campbell resonating with people the world over. Their works are immortalised inside the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, Tennessee – arguably the county capital of the world – alongside the tunes created by their musical predecessors who paved the way for modern country music as we know it today. Many artists looking to catch their big break in the music business back in country music’s heyday would flock to Nashville, playing at venue and clubs all over the city. Over 1400 artefacts collected from almost 100 years of country music’s history have been preserved here, each one tied to an artist who aimed to make their mark on the musical landscape of America.
With many modern-day Americans having family backgrounds that can be traced all over the globe, the culinary landscape of America has been shaped by these influences from international communities. From the Italian pizzerias in New York City to the fusion feasts in California that combine the best cuisine from Mexico and more, you’ll be sure to never tire of what delicious dishes America can bring to the table.
The contemporary culinary landscape of the United States does have some universally distinctive features which can be found in practically every state. It is disputed exactly who came up with the hamburger, but what is known is that it became famous at the 1904 St. Louis World Fair stage which gained the humble burger popularity all over the country. They could now be considered the unofficial national dish of the United States, with a number of individual states having their own unique takes on how burgers should be prepared for maximum flavour.
Each state also has its own distinctive dishes which symbolise the unique cuisine available to eat there, like baja fish tacos from California which encapsulate the multicultural food scene you can find by the beach, to BBQ beef brisket down in Texas where the meat is smoked to perfection until it’s so tender and flavourful it needs no sides or sauces to go with it.
Janet and David Byard
Our first river cruise with Riviera - but not our last. A great week on the Main with super weather, fantastic food and good company. Our reps Sarah and Susie were excellent and the crew of the Swiss Tiara could not have been mo...
We have just returned from this tour and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Noel, our tour leader, was professional, caring and informative. Ahmed [I hope I spelled this correctly] was our local guide, who was so knowledgeable and answered...