The sights and sounds of New York & Washington are familiar from countless Hollywood films and TV dramas – but nothing can prepare you for the sheer extraordinary scale and vitality of these remarkable cities.
Selected departures April to November 2017
You should arrive at the airport for your scheduled flight to Washington DC. After our early afternoon arrival, we transfer to the centrally located four-star Cambria Suites Hotel or the Hyatt Place, just north of the White House for three nights. The rest of the day is at leisure.
Washington DC - nestling serenely on the Potomac River, we have all seen this amazing city’s glistening array of world-famous monuments in countless political thrillers like ‘All the President’s Men’! But when you imagine the worldwide importance of the decisions taken here, the reality of Washington can be overwhelming.
On our guided tour this morning we’ll have the benefit of an expert local guide to show us the world-famous museums, buildings and memorials of the Capitol, the White House, the Vietnam and World War II Memorials, the Lincoln Memorial and so much more. The afternoon is at leisure.
This morning we drive through beautiful countryside to nearby Mount Vernon, George Washington’s stunning home and estate. There is so much to see here: the impressive, yet intimate, formal ground floor rooms display a wealth of original furniture. Walk through the original gardens, where the ‘greats’ of 18th century America once strolled and still supply plentiful vegetables and fruit. You will visit Washington’s tomb, the slave quarters and the pioneer farm with its unusual 16-sided threshing barn, designed by Washington himself.
Returning to the city this afternoon you are free to explore some of the excellent Smithsonian Museums, perhaps the world-famous Air and Space Museum or the host of other attractions in this amazing city.
This morning, a poignant visit to Arlington, America’s renowned military cemetery, huge at 624 acres and final resting place of the Kennedys, John and Robert, with memorials to the two space shuttle disasters plus the Lockerbie bombing amongst many others. We have some free time for lunch before boarding the impressive sleek Amtrak train for its 3.5-hour journey to New York, then transferring to the centrally-located four-star Cambria Suites Times Square for two nights.
This morning we enjoy a fascinating tour of New York’s amazing sights with a ‘hop-on hop-off’ tour pass, including bustling Times Square, the iconic Rockefeller Centre, laid-back Central Park and the Empire State Building. Our tour allows you the freedom to use your pass independently and get off at whichever particular sight you want to see, or join your tour manager on a fixed itinerary visiting the major sights.
The afternoon is free to explore New York’s many fascinating museums, shops and neighbourhoods. You could take a cruise around Manhattan, see the Statue of Liberty, a wander round the superbly restored Meatpacking District or perhaps a memorable helicopter flight over this most photogenic of cities. One of the simplest pleasures though is just a stroll through Central Park, used in countless films’ sets and undoubtedly one of the world’s most famous urban spaces - the perfect place to watch New Yorkers taking it easy. ‘The Met’, with its extraordinary collections of Native American art, Impressionists and ancient Egyptian treasures is a New York landmark and an absolute ‘must-see’ world-class institution. A wander through Chinatown or Little Italy helps you appreciate the mammoth ethnic melting pot New York was, is and always will be. Another great option is the Empire State Building or the Rockefeller Centre for the finest sunset views. The latest landmark is of course the thought-provoking ‘ground zero’ visitor centre where the World Trade Centre once stood.
This evening, explore ‘the city that never sleeps’, there’s a vast choice of restaurants and entertainment from classic Broadway musicals to jazz clubs or just Greenwich Village’s intimate little bars. Absorb the ‘buzz’ - this is truly one of the world’s greatest cities!
Early this morning from Penn Station, a wonderful classic building in its own right, we board the Amtrak Empire Service to Niagara Falls. This iconic American journey takes us through up-state New York’s wonderful bucolic scenery, following the Hudson River valley, bisected by finger lakes, forest-covered hillsides and studded with the neat settlements so typical of small-town America. Arriving in Niagara this afternoon, we cross into Canada for the most spectacular views and our hotel for two nights with breakfast, the four-star Marriott Gateway on the Falls (Falls view rooms available from £26pp supplement).
Niagara Falls has long been a magnet for daredevils, sightseers and honeymooners but there are few superlatives which can describe the sheer spectacle in front of you as the equivalent of over one million bath-fulls of water cascade every single minute over a 200 foot high cliff, crashing in a deafening roar below.
We have included a thrilling boat cruise on the famous Hornblower Cruise to get you as close as possible to the thundering waters at the base of the falls (subject to weather in Apr & Nov). For a real close-up experience, you’ll also explore the tunnels, staggeringly behind the very falls themselves, for an astonishing view of the massive wall of water - but from the inside! Then we’ll take a lift, walking along the bottom of the Niagara Gorge for a truly spectacular ‘close-up’ view of some amazing white-water rapids.
Next it’s a fascinating visit to the Daredevil Museum learning about all the ‘brave’, or perhaps just foolhardy, riding over the falls and seeing many of the home-made barrels constructed to survive this incredible feat – sometimes!
This morning we say goodbye to Niagara Falls and head out to the small community of Niagara-on-the-Lake, often cited as the prettiest town in Ontario. With its wonderful Victorian-era architecture, it’s a fascinating insight into a small Canadian town of a hundred years ago. We then continue on to Toronto, Canada’s largest city. Its soaring glass skyscrapers contrast with the parks and lakefront boardwalks of a host of communities. Dominated by the CN Tower – at 1,815 feet the western hemisphere’s tallest freestanding structure, we take an exhilarating ride to its observation deck in exterior glass lifts. Once there, are you brave enough to walk on the glass floor? This afternoon we transfer to the airport for our return overnight direct flight.
We arrive back in the UK after a truly memorable tour, the memories of which will last a lifetime.
The sights and sounds of New York & Washington are familiar from countless Hollywood films and TV dramas – but nothing can prepare you for the sheer extraordinary scale and vitality of these remarkable cities. The iconic Manhattan skyline reflects the very essence of the United States – striving to be the biggest and the best! We enjoy a wonderful day on board the Maple Leaf train service crossing into Canada spending two nights at Niagara Falls, seeing this incredible natural phenomenon from all angles.
The price of this holiday is per person based on two people sharing a twin room and includes: scheduled direct flights to Washington DC, returning from Toronto; all transfers and journey on Amtrak train between Washington DC and New York, and between New York and Niagara Falls; seven nights accommodation on room only basis in four-star hotels; all tours as mentioned including Washington DC sightseeing, Mt. Vernon, Arlington Cemetery, New York sightseeing and in Niagara Falls the Hornblower cruise (subject to weather conditions in Apr & Nov), Niagara tunnels & Daredevil Museum, Toronto sightseeing with CN Tower visit; hotel porterage of one item of luggage per person (not at rail stations); the service of a Riviera tour manager. Single rooms are subject to availability at the relevant supplement above.
Visa/ESTA for USA: Under the USA Visa Waiver Programme, most British passport holders do not require a visa to travel to the United States if travelling as a tourist for up to 90 days.
Those qualifying for the Visa Waiver Programme must apply online for authorisation to enter the USA, for which there is an administration fee of $14 per person. This is called an ESTA. This may only be obtained online by visiting the official website: https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov and registering at least 72 hours prior to travel.
Those who do not qualify for the VWP will be required to apply for a visa. Please contact the relevant embassy for any additional information. Without authorisation prior to travel, admission may be denied at a US port of entry.
British passport holders do not require a visa or an eTA to enter Canada by land or sea, therefore you will not need to obtain a visa or eTA for this tour.
Whilst care has been taken to ensure that the information provided relating to visa requirements is true and correct at time of publication, changes in requirements after the time of publication may impact on the accuracy of this information. Therefore, whilst we strive to provide the most up-to-date information, we strongly suggest that you re-confirm requirements with the relevant embassy prior to application. Other nationality passport holders should check with the relevant embassy.
Health: There are no current health requirements for travel to the USA and Canada, however, whilst the travelling schedule shall pose no problems for people of any age in normal physical health, we would point out that we often enjoy walking tours (sometimes over unmade paths) so this holiday may not be suitable for clients of greatly impaired mobility. Please bear this in mind when considering this holiday.