Dixieland New Orleans, Vicksburg, Natches, Memphis
"Way Down South In Dixie"
Dixieland New Orleans, Vicksburg, Natchez, Memphis
September 9-21, 2015 For many years folks from all over the nation have travelled along the banks of the Mighty Mississippi through the states of Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi and Louisiana (just to name a few) to be "Way Down South in Dixie!" Southern charm and grace abound as we visit historic rivertowns such as; Natchez, Memphis and New Orleans. American History also comes alive in the Deep South, which is why we'll visit Vicksburg and the Civil War Museum in Carthage. Add to this...the unbelievable National WWII Museum in New Orleans. This 13 day tour has a unique quality as you'll see not only beautiful Antebellum Mansions and Plantations but we'll also visit Elvis Presley's Graceland, both Truman and Clinton's Presidential Libraries and even the Precious Moments Chapel. Oh and did I mention that several of our hotel properties are located within the historic districts of New Orleans, Vicksburg, Memphis and Natchez? As you study the itinerary, you'll see where most of the days offer short driving distances so that we can take our time, be more rested and see more of the sights at a pace that most people can be comfortable with. Oh the places you'll go on a Happy Trails Tour! Join us for a delightful road trip this September to the Deep South! We'll save a seat for you.
Round-Trip Motor Coach Transportation Northeast & Central MN -Grand Rapids, Iron Range Cities & Duluth; Brainerd, Little Falls, Rice & Sartell/St Cloud
12 Nights Lodging(3 nights @ Doubletree New Orleans French Quarter; 2 nights in Vicksburg, 2 in Memphis downtown; Plus Overnights in the Following- Natchez, Mississippi, Carthage, Missouri; Little Rock, Arkansas; Peru, Illinois
In New Orleans: WWII Museum; Mardi Gra World; Louisiana Swamp Tour; Creole Queen Dinner Cruise and an Area New Orleans Tour. Our hotel is within walking distance of the Big & Easy "Historic French Quarter".
In Vicksburg: Accommodations at the BW Vicksburg, Vicksburg Civil War Military Park & Film; Tour the Martha Vick & George Washington Ball Plantations, Dinner & Tour of the Historic Anchuca Antebellum Mansion.
In Natchez: Accommodations at the Historic Grand Hotel within a Couple Blocks of the Historic Downtown; Pilgrimage Tour to include the Historic Stanton Hall Plantation (with Lunch) Narrated Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides.
In Memphis: Accommodations at the Hampton Inn Peabody Place (A block off Beale Street!); Graceland (Lunch); Sun Studio; Dinner at Miss Pollys; and time to explore the sights and sounds of Memphis' Beale Street.
Other Great Additions to This Tour: Natchez Trace Parkway; Precious Moments Chapel in Carthage & Carthage Civil War Museum; Two Presidential Libraries (Truman in Kansas City & Clinton in Little Rock)
19 Meals: 12 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches and 3 Dinners
Other Important Inclusions: Luggage Handling, All Taxes, Tips for Porters & Included Meals and Happy Trails Tours provides an On-Board Tour Host to Assure a Well Maintained Tour Vacation!
ITINERARY: WED. DAY 1: SEPTEMBER 9 - TRAVEL TO DES MOINES Miles Traveled: 525 Meals: all on own todayThis tour includes boarding in various towns throughout the state of Minnesota. We’ll begin with Grand Rapids, Iron Range Cities (Hibbing, Virginia, Chisholm, Eveleth) Duluth. Then in the central portion of the state; boarding will be in Brainerd, Little Falls, Rice and St Cloud. Once everyone is on board, begin our journey with our first overnight in Des Moines, Iowa. You’ll find the first day to include time to relax and get to know fellow travelers while riding along. Stops will be made every 2 ½ - 3 hours. We’ll arrive to the lovely Drury Inn around 5:30 pm tonight. This property offers hot and cold appetizers, baked potato, salad, type of meat entre (tacos, hotdogs, cocktail meatballs or chicken strips, etc) and more. Cocktails, snacks and soft drinks, alcoholic beverages are also complimentary. The evening is yours to enjoy as per your own agenda. THU. DAY 2: SEPTEMBER 10 - TRAVEL TO CARTHAGE, MISSOURI Miles: 335 Meals: BreakfastAfter breakfast, included, we'll dedicate this day to traveling south through the state of Iowa and along the western border of Missouri arriving to Carthage around 5:30 pm. In the late morning, we'll arrive to the Kansas City area where we'll stop for lunch. After lunch, we'll travel to Independence, Missouri to visit our 33rd President, Harry S Truman Presidential Library. Carthage is filled with Civil War history and like most tours, we've always got a few history buffs on board who'll enjoy our time here. Our hotel is the lovely BW Precious Moments.
FRI. DAY 3: SEPTEMBER 11 - TRAVEL TO LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS Miles: 282 Meals: BreakfastAfter breakfast, included, we'll take ourselves over to the Carthage Civil War Museum. The Battle of Carthage was the first full-scale land battle of the Civil War. The museum features a wall-sized mural of the Battle of Carthage, as well as a video explaining the Civil War in the Ozark Mountains and numerous artifacts and displays. Our next stop while in Carthage will be to the Precious Moments Complex where we'll get our lunch. We'll allow a bit of time to visit the Chapel and the lovely grounds of this property. In the early afternoon, we'll continue our travels to Little Rock with an estimated arrival of 6 pm. Tonight we'll make the beautiful Burgundy Inn our "home away from home."
SAT, DAY 4: SEPTEMBER 12 - TRAVEL TO VICKSBURG, MISSISSIPPI MILES: 219 MEALS: BREAKFAST & DINNERAfter breakfast, included, we'll visit our 2nd presidential library...this one is only a short drive from the hotel. William J Clinton's Presidential Library celebrates and life and legacy of our 42nd President. You'll enjoy your time here and find the time to go by very quickly. We'll spend a couple hours here before continuing our journey to the Deep South, where lovely antebellum mansions and Southern plantations rest. In the late afternoon we'll arrive to beautiful Vicksburg and settle into the Best Western Vicksburg. Tonight a treat is in store as we'll visit our first historic Mansion, Anchuca. This is Vicksburg's most significant homes as it's one of the very first "columned mansions" built in 1830. It stood proudly through the Siege of Vicksburg and served as a shelter for those who had suffered severely through the War. Included in this home tour is a lovely Southern-style sit down dinner.
SUN, DAY 5: SEPTEMBER 13 - THE SIGHTS AND SOUNDS OF HISTORIC VICKSBURG MEALS: BREAKFASTAfter breakfast, included, we'll set out to visit Vicksburg Military Park. Civil War history will come alive with our local historian / storyteller. We are sure to go away with a more clearer understanding about the Siege of Vicksburg and how it impacted the area and it's people. After lunch, we'll visit two lovely Southern plantations...the Martha Vick Home and the George Washington Ball House. Docents will greet us upon our arrival as we step back into the life and times of the mid-1800's. We'll return to our hotel around 5 pm tonight where the evening will be enjoyed as per our own agenda. We also will suggest some nice places to eat. We'll spend night #2 at the lovely Best Western Vicksburg.
MON, DAY 6: SEPTEMBER 14 - TRAVEL TO NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA! Miles: 234 BREAKFASTAfter breakfast, included, we'll begin another new day...We are just a short drive to New Orleans. We'll arrive around lunch time. After we've had lunch, we'll welcome an Area City Tour Guide to join us on board our coach and tour the city of New Orleans. Our day will begin with a Katrina City tour with narration of the French Quarter, Lower ninth street ward, Esplanade Avenue with a stop at St Louis #3 Cemetery. While on the tour, you'll also get an overview what is around our hotel so that when you have free time, you'll have some direction as to what is nearby. We'll finish up our tour around 5 pm and check into our lovely property for the next three nights. Our hotel is the lovely Double Tree Hotel located on Canal Street and within easy walking distance of the famous French Quarter. We've left the evening for you to explore as per your agenda tonight.
TUE, DAY 7: SEPTEMBER 15 - THE SIGHTS AND SOUNDS OF NEW ORLEANS' BIG AND EASY MEAL: BREAKFASTEnjoy a lovely breakfast at the Doubletree! (This is not a continental deluxe breakfast that most properties offer!). We are going to experience New Orleans' Streetcar to get ourselves around. And we've dedicated the entire day to the National WWII Museum. The National WWII Museum tells the story of the American experience in the war that changed the world - why it was fought, how it was won, and what it means today. This is amazing facility that most people cannot see in just a short visit. If you find that after a couple of hours at the WWII Museum has satisfied your curiosity, simply feel free to take the rest of the day and spend where you wish. Everyone will have a "street car pass" where they can hop off and on as per their own agenda. This is New Orleans and the choices are limitless!!! Enjoy your day!
WED, DAY 8: SEPTEMBER 16 - MORE SIGHTS AND SOUNDS OF NEW ORLEANS MEAL: BREAKFAST, LUNCH & DINNER CRUISEEnjoy a lovely breakfast at the Doubletree! Today we're off to explore Louisiana Bayou Country where a Swamp Boat Tour is all set for our arrival this morning. We'll see alligators up close and personal as well as travel (and cruise) through some pretty awesome country. A boxed lunch (Po Boy Style) is included. Our next stop is to Mardi Gras World! Wait to till you see this amazing place....Since 1947, Blaine Kern Studios has built breathtaking parade floats not only for Mardi Gras but for parades all over the world. Take our day tour to see what it takes to bring Mardi Gras to life year after year—you’ll learn about the history of this unique and festive tradition and go beyond its reputation for revelry to get a deeper understanding of the real Mardi Gras. We'll return to our hotel in the late afternoon with a bit of time to put freshen up for tonight's Dixie Style Dinner Cruise on the Mighty Mississippi, "Creole Queen"! A great buffet dinner, wonderful scenery and narration as well as a Dixieland Band will entertain you for the next couple of hours. What a fabulous way to spend your last evening in New Orleans. Enjoy.
THU, DAY 9: SEPTEMBER 17- TRAVEL TO NATCHEZ, MISSISSIPPI! MILES: 170 BREAKFAST & LUNCHEnjoy a lovely breakfast at the Doubletree! We'll say good-bye to New Orleans and begin our journey to the lovely river town of Natchez, MS. It's a short journey that brings us to this lovely city early in the day. We'll being our day on a Fall Pilgrimage Tour where we'll visit Stanton Hall Plantation (Built in 1857) where our lunch awaits. After lunch, we'll divide our group into two...where half the group will tour this lovely antebellum mansion while the other half enjoys a narrated Natchez tour by horse-drawn carriage. Each tour lasting about an hour, the groups will switch places so that everyone has toured the home and enjoyed the carriage ride. Later in the afternoon, we'll check into our lovely accommodations at the historic Natchez Grand Hotel on Broadway Street (downtown). The rest of the day is yours to enjoy as per your own agenda. You are in a fabulous location where dining, shopping and more attractions abound.
FRI, DAY 10:SEPTEMBER 18 - TRAVEL TO MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE (VIA NATCHEZ TRACE PARKWAY) MILES: 330 BREAKFAST & DINNEREnjoy a lovely breakfast at the Grand Hotel! We'll depart Natchez and begin our travels northbound along the Mighty Mississippi to Memphis, TN. We'll take the Scenic Natchez Trace Parkway that travels northeast through the state of Mississippi, making stops along the way until we come to Jackson. From Jackson, we'll take I-55 north to Memphis with an expected arrival around mid-afternoon. Our lodging for the next two nights is the lovely Hampton Inn Peabody Place right downtown! Again....you are in a fabulous location where you can walk about a 1 1/2 blocks to the Peabody Hotel and watch the little ducks make their infamous march at 5 pm! Tonight we've included a yummy Southern Fried Chicken Dinner at Miss Polly's Cafe on Beale Street. Yummm! Spend the rest of the evening at your leisure. We are only a couple blocks from Beale Street to our hotel.
SAT, DAY 11:SEPTEMBER 19- THE SIGHTS AND SOUNDS OF MEMPHIS MEALS: BREAKFAST & LUNCHEnjoy breakfast at the Hampton Inn before spending the day touring the city of Rock and Soul! We'll start the day visiting Graceland. We’ll get our “Platinum Tickets” which include an “audio-guided” Tour of Graceland Mansion and grounds, Elvis’ Two Custom Airplanes, Elvis’ Auto Museum, Elvis in Hollywood Exhibit, Elvis Live: The King and Pop Culture Exhibit, Private Presley Exhibit and the ‘68 Special Exhibit. The Visitors Center Complex also has lots of shopping venues and we've included lunch vouchers today. After lunch, we'll wind our way to Sun Studios. This stop is legendary and a Memphis ICON! It’s tough visiting Memphis and not stopping here. You’ll enjoy the 45 minute tour Here you’ll learn the inside stories of BBKing, Johnny Cash, Howlin’ Wolf, Ike Turner, Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins and Roy Orbison. You will actually hear some of those first original recordings. It’s cool. By mid-afternoon, we've decided to let folks spend the rest of their time here at their leisure...exploring what interests them. You may not want to miss visiting the Rock and Soul Smithsonian or the Gibson Guitar Factory. It's all within steps of your hotel. Enjoy.
SUN, DAY 12: SEPTEMBER 20- TRAVEL TO PERU, ILLINOIS MILES: 525 MEALS: BREAKFASTEnjoy breakfast at the Hampton Inn before our early morning homeward bound departure. We'll leave the lovely city of Memphis and begin our journey homeward through the lovely states of Tennessee, Kentucky and Illinois. We'll make stops as the day goes along. We'll arrive to Peru in the early evening to the lovely Fairfield Inn. Evening meal is at your leisure tonight.
MON, DAY 13 SEPTEMBER 21 - HOMEWARD BOUND 300 MILES TO EAU CLAIR, WI - BREAKFAST Breakfast included.We’ll wind our way through Illinois, Wisconsin and on into Minnesota today. We'll have lunch in the Madison area before continuing on to Eau Clair, where we'll meet our Trobec Shuttle. We'll say good-bye to our Happy Trails family as folks from the Central Minnesota area will board the shuttle and begin their journey homeward. The Northeast MN group will continue on the main coach to the northwest portion of the state. Estimated arrival to Duluth area about 6:00 pm. A quick stop will be made in Duluth for meal stop; then continue homeward bound. Estimated arrival to Eveleth will be 8:00 pm; Virginia at 8:15 pm; Hibbing 8:45 pm and Grand Rapids area around 9:30 pm. Those from Central MN will arrive around 6:30 pm to Sartell, 6:45 pm to Rice; 7:15 to Little Falls and 8 pm to Brainerd. We hope you’ve left some room in your suitcase for all the great memories you’ll have made! Thank you so much for traveling with us!
Note: Hotels listed offer two beds in each non-smoking room. Please keep in mind that sometimes couples will be given a king bed if the hotel availability is limited. Oftentimes, these king rooms will offer a pull out sleeper sofa. All properties listed also offer coffeemakers, iron and boards and hairdryers in the rooms. Many have indoor pools and full service restaurants on site. If there is not a restaurant on site, many are within walking distance of the property or Happy Trails Tours may choose to bring you to a restaurant by motor coach transportation.
Things to Know before you go on your Deep South Tour
Financial Information: Deposit of $150 per person due when registering. No reservation is considered solid without a deposit paid. The deposit is fully refundable with cancelations made prior to July 9, 2015. Final payment is due July 31, 2015. Monies refunded between July 9-August 1 are contingent to what Happy Trails Tours receives from hotels, attractions, restaurants, tour companies and charters. No refunds with cancellations made after August 1, 2015. Travel Insurance is highly recommended.
How to Dress: Pack light.... wear casual clothing, comfortable shoes & a lined jacket. Think positive…pack sunscreen!
Luggage: Pack one suitcase each. This suitcase is delivered each night to your rooms by the porter - including tips. You may bring a carry-on bag, as well, on board. Carry-on bags are handled by yourself. Do not make them heavier than what you can carry. Pack a swimming suit if you enjoy the pool, bring a camera, a raincoat, & an umbrella...just in case! It is wise to pack an alarm clock, too, as sometimes a glitch occurs for wake-up calls from the front desk.
Hotels: The hotels are very nice throughout the entire tour. Many have indoor/ outdoor pools, coffeemakers, irons, ironing boards and fitness centers.
The Coach: The coach is chartered through Trobec Bus Company and can accommodate up to 56 passengers. They offer reclining seats, big windows, foot rest, restroom, TV’s & VCR & DVD. It may even have seatbelts and Wi_Fi depending on which coach we use.We stop every 2 - 3 hours for breaks. We do not rotate seats. Please let us know if you have any special needs or concerns.
Special Needs: Be sure to let us know of any special needs...such as diet, walking, stairs, allergies or motion sickness, etc…. Please refrain from using strong colognes or perfumes while on board the coach. So many folks have allergies and we want everyone comfortable while traveling. If you use a cane, wheel chair or motorized scooter- bring it!
Meals: There are many nice meals included in this tour. Many offer nice breakfast with a wide variety to pick from. If you have any special dietary needs, you may have to supplement these by bringing along a small cooler and packing some food items in it. The hotels tell me they are limited in accommodating specific dietary requests (Glueten / Lactose Intollerant Diets) unless they know in advance.
Tipping: The tour includes tips for luggage handling, meals and step-on-guides while touring on this tour. Tips are not included for your driver & on board travel host. This is traditionally done at the end of the tour and oftentimes done individually.
Schedule Changes: We reserve the right to adjust this schedule for the benefit of all traveling. Sometimes changes occur beyond our control. If a change occurs, we’ll replace it something of equal value. We have no control over any of the attractions listed in this flyer. Other than a few date and time adjustments for some of the attractions, few changes have been made so far. We will try to keep you informed of anything major if they should happen.
Travel Protection Insurance: Travel protection insurance is available to folks for many different types of emergencies that may result in a personal cancellation on this tour. It not only offers financial security but also “peace of mind”. It appears that most of our customers have insured their tour. If you have not and would like more information, kindly give us a call.
Disclaimer: Happy Trails Tours acts only as an agent for the various independent suppliers that provide hotel accommodations, transportation, theater, or other services connected with this tour. Such services are subject to the terms and conditions of those suppliers. Happy Trails Tours, INC and their respective employees, agents, representatives accept no liability whatsoever for any injury, damage, loss, accident, delay, or any other default of any company or person in performing these services. Responsibility is not accepted for losses, injury, damages or expenses of any kind due to sickness, weather, strikes, hostilities, wars, terrorist acts, acts of nature, local laws or other causes. All services and accommodations are subject to the laws and regulations of country in which they are provided. Happy Trails Tours INC is not responsible for any baggage or personal effects of any individual participating in the tours/trips arranged by Happy Trails Tours. Individual travelers are responsible for purchasing a travel insurance policy, if desired, that will cover some of the expenses associated with the loss of luggage or personal effects.