Best of the West Road Trip: California, Utah & Vegas Bright Lights

Best of the West Road Trip: California, Utah & Vegas Bright Lights

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13 Days
From

$2899

$2090

Best of the West Road Trip: California, Utah & Vegas Bright Lights

13 Days Starting and ending in Los Angeles

Visiting: Los Angeles, Avila, Yosemite National Park, Bishop, Las Vegas, Zion National Park, Grand Canyon National Park, Joshua Tree National Park, Santa Monica

Tour operator:

G Adventures

Tour code:

26006

Physical rating:

3 - Average

Special diets catered:

Vegetarians, Vegans

Tour operated in:
English
From:
$2899
$2090 (USD) Operator discount: -$750 The Big ADVENTURE Sale: -$59 -28%
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Tour Overview

Want the the ultimate U.S. road trip? Coming right up. Spend 13 days seeing the best of the west as you travel through four states, six national parks, and along historic Route 66. Treat your eyes (and your soul) to stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. Chill out with the laid-back beach vibes of Santa Monica. Look way, way, way up at the towering granite rocks in Yosemite. And explore the infamous Death Valley and the legendary Joshua Tree National Park. Just under two weeks is all you need for this quintessential U.S. adventure — ready to hit the open road?

Highlights

  • Cruise through the dazzling neighbourhoods of LA, Sleep along the Pacific Coast in Avila, Stargaze in Yosemite National Park, Hike through the harsh landscapes of Death Valley, Witness the grandeur of Zion, Wander through the hoodoos of Bryce Canyon, Hike to view the impressive Horseshoe Bend, Stare in awe at the utter vastness of the Grand Canyon, Walk among the giant boulders in Joshua Tree, Travel along historic Route 66, Sit back and relax near the Santa Monica Pier

Itinerary

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Day 1: Los Angeles/Avila
Location: Los Angeles
Accommodation: Avila Hot Springs

Welcome to sunny Southern California! Your day starts early, taking in all the must-see sites of The City of Angels, before driving along the Pacific Coast Highway to Avila Beach. On your morning tour of Los Angeles, you'll check-off all the places you've seen in the movies: Beverly Hills' Rodeo Drive, the famous Hollywood sign, and of course Sunset Boulevard. You'll leave the sprawling metropolis to drive up the coast, with a stop in Santa Barbara for lunch. Set up camp in Avila before zipping over to San Luis Obispo for dinner on your own.

Additional Information: Please note your arrival flight should land no later than 6:00 AM in order for you to be on time to your 8:30 AM Welcome Meeting.

ACTIVITY: MORNING Your opportunity to meet your CEO and fellow travellers, and learn more about your tour. The group will meet early on day 1 before beginning the journey along the coast to Avila.

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.

ACTIVITY: Right after the welcome meeting hop in the van and begin the adventure! Drive through the city with your CEO as the lead and see the infamous Rodeo Drive and the glitz of Hollywood, Sunset Blvd, and Beverly Hills. The orientation tour will last about an hour and a half. Then, the group will continue driving north up the coast to Santa Barbara where there will be free time for lunch on your own in this charming coastal city.

Day 2: Avila
Location: Avila
Accommodation: Avila Hot Springs
Meals Included: BREAKFAST, LUNCH

On the road again....okay, so technically its only Day 2, but we wanted to get you singing along. Explore the coast of California today on a drive up Highway 1 to San Simeon to watch the Elephant Seals sunbathe on the beach. Oh, to be an elephant seal lounging on the Cali beach all day, every day. Alas, you are not an elephant seal, so head just a bit further north to Ragged Point for an epic view and killer hike to the beach. Spend the afternoon relaxing on Avila Beach, taking a soak in the public hot springs or renting a bike to find the perfect spot to watch a sunset over the Pacific. Life is your oyster.

ACTIVITY: Think epic views and winding roads with the ocean's surf pounding on one side and rising cliffs walling you in on the other. Today's drive is all about Highway 1! See some of the best spots along this famous route with a stop in San Simeon to watch the resident Elephant Seals basking in the sun. Stretch those legs with a hike to the beach near Ragged point, where you will enjoy a picnic lunch before heading back towards Avila.

FREE TIME: AFTERNOON Spend a free afternoon in Avila. Opt to soak in the local hot springs, or rent a bike to pedal through town and along the water.

Day 3: Avila/Yosemite National Park
Location: Avila
Accommodation: Indian Flats Campground
Meals Included: BREAKFAST

We hate to drag you away from the beach, but it's time to strap on a bum bag and the sun cream, it's hiking time. Yosemite is waiting for you, so pack up camp after breakfast and hit the road. Road trip inland towards one of the most popular National Parks in the USA. Once you arrive in El Portal to set up camp, you'll get your first introduction to the park through Yosemite's Arch Rock entrance and along the Merced River.

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle. Along the way to Yosemite the group will make a stop in Fresno. There will be time for you to grab lunch on your own before finishing the drive west.

ACTIVITY: Picturesque valleys, vast wilderness, powerful waterfalls, elusive wildlife, ancient sequoias and more than 16 types of granite make up this internationally recognized national park. Hike the trails, get up close to ancient rock formations and take panoramic photos of this gorgeous landscape. Keep an eye out for black bears, deer, and coyotes.

Day 4: Yosemite National Park
Location: Yosemite National Park
Accommodation: Indian Flats Campground
Meals Included: BREAKFAST, LUNCH

Ready for more? Of course you are. Everywhere you look in Yosemite National Park is picture perfect. Snap shots of it's famous waterfalls and giant sequoia trees, and catch a glimpse of climbers scaling El Capitan. Explore its landscapes however you want, with several hikes to choose from: The Mist Trail, Yosemite Falls, or Nevada Falls just to name a few. What will you find as you explore the trails of one of the U.S.'s most famous parks? Want to cover more ground? Opt to rent a bike and cruise the valley floor.

ACTIVITY: FULL DAY Spend a full day in this magnificent park. There are several hikes to choose from like, The Mist Trail, Yosemite Falls, and Nevada Falls to name a few. Immerse yourself in the landscape and soak in all of the sites, sounds, and smells of one of the oldest national parks in the U.S.

FREE TIME: FULL DAY Spend the day as you please and take advantage of free time to further explore this magnificent park with its granite rock formations and many waterfalls. Opt to hike the many trails or rent a bike and pedal through the valley floor of Yosemite. Your CEO will be available to help you decide which activities are best for you.

Day 5: Yosemite National Park/Bishop
Location: Yosemite National Park
Accommodation: Brownstown Campground
Meals Included: BREAKFAST, LUNCH

Another day, another epic adventure in the U S of A. Pack up your campsite in Yosemite and hit the road. Today you'll get glimpses of some of the most stunning natural views in the Southeastern US. The drive from Yosemite National Park to Bishop is full of insta-perfect shots. Today you'll drive across Yosemite, through El Portal to Tuolumne Grove, with a hike to see the famous giant Sequoia trees. After lunch, you'll hike the Lembert Dome Trail then travel over Tioga Pass landing in Bishop in the early evening to prep your camp site for a night under the stars.

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.

ACTIVITY: Tuolumne Grove trail is a 2 hour round-trip hike down to see a couple dozen mature Giant Sequoias, including one you can walk through. These are some of the oldest and largest living entities on the planet. It’s an experience you are sure to remember.

Elevation at trailhead: 6,200 feet (1,860 meters)

ACTIVITY: Dig in for this challenging hike to the dome's summit and be rewarded with excellent views of the Tuolumne Meadows and the surrounding area. The effort’s all worth it!

Day 6: Bishop/Las Vegas
Location: Bishop
Accommodation: Golden Nugget Las Vegas - Carson Tower
Meals Included: BREAKFAST, LUNCH

Get low before you roll high! Drive through the infamous Death Valley, the hottest, driest, and lowest park in North America, before making your way to Las Vegas for the evening. Death Valley is a bucket-list place to visit when you're in the Southeastern United States. Known for it's salt flats, colorful rocks, and high temps, you'll spend a morning seeing these spots (plus Furnace Creek, Badwater Basin and Zabriskie Point) then head off to Las Vegas. Walk The Strip, take in a show, or roll the dice — or do it all! Just remember: what happens on a Roamies trip, stays on a Roamies trip.

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.

ACTIVITY: Death Valley is one of America’s most extreme locations – from sand dunes and desert, to badlands, towering peaks, and a basin that actually registers below sea-level, this is sure to be an unforgettable stop. Hottest. Driest. Lowest. There’s a bit of everything here on the border of California and Nevada.

FREE TIME: EVENING Enjoy yourselves on a free evening in the lights and glitz of Las Vegas! Opt to explore The Strip, grab a bite to eat, or search for a fun place to toast your adventures with your newest Roamies!

Day 7: Las Vegas To Zion National Park Via Bryce Canyon
Location: Las Vegas
Meals Included: DINNER

Depart from Las Vegas first thing in the morning and head out with your fellow Roamies to Zion National Park. Spend the day hiking, exploring, and gazing up at the sandstone cliffs. From the Narrows to the Emerald Pools there's no shortage of captivating hikes here. Drive to East Zion in the early evening, where you'll set up camp for the next 2 nights.

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle. Stop in Cedar City to break up the drive. Stretch those legs and opt to grab some lunch at a place of your choosing, then finish the drive to Bryce Canyon, where you will spend the afternoon exploring this park.

ACTIVITY: See a sight like no other at this giant forest of stone made up of collection of massive natural amphitheaters. This park contains hundreds of thousands of eroded spires, pinnacles, and other shapes as far as the eye can see.

ACTIVITY: Trek through the most popular trail in Bryce Canyon to see its famous hoodoos - tall, thin spires of rock that seem to magically balance upon their dusty, red rock base. Begin your hike at Sunrise Point and make your way toward Queen Victoria, the trail's namesake rock formation. Continue through the amphitheater on Navajo Loop past Wall Street or Thor's Hammer, depending on trail conditions. Exit at Sunset Point before walking the Rim Trail back to our starting point. Soak in the views one last time - you'll want to take it all in.

Hiking distance: 4.6km (2.9 mi) Elevation change: 183m (600 ft).

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle as you travel from Bryce Canyon National Park to East Zion where the group will be camping for the next two nights.

Day 8: Zion National Park
Location: Zion National Park
Meals Included: BREAKFAST, LUNCH

Wake up with the birds chirping and make breakfast at camp. Pack a lunch for the day then drive to Zion National Park. Once there it's time to explore! You'll board the national park shuttle to take you into the park and explore your heart out. There are a couple different trail options, the main ones being The Emerald Pools, The Narrows, Scouts Lookout and Watchman Trail. Grab your hiking books, your new best buddy and get out there! Enjoy your packed lunch whenever you choose! Later, travel back to East Zion for a chill evening with your fellow Roamies at the camp site. Once it gets dark, get ready to sit around the campfire, roast some marshmallows and stare up at the stars. First one to see a shooting star wins an extra s'more!

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle. After breakfast at camp, the group will pack lunches for the day and travel about an hour to the Zion National Park shuttle stop.

ACTIVITY: Admire monumental sandstone cliffs of cream, pink, and red that tower into the sky. Experience diverse plant and animal life, and wade through water in a narrow slot canyon as the park transitions from desert to forest. Gaze at the awe-inspiring beauty of the high plateaus, striking towers, temples, mesas, and the earth's tallest-known sheer sandstone walls.

FREE TIME: FULL DAY Spend a full day exploring the wonders of Zion. Sit down and enjoy a picnic lunch in the park, and then opt to check out various trails like, the Emerald Pools, the famous Narrows, Scouts Lookout, or Watchman Trails.

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle on the drive back to camp in East Zion. Dinner will be on your own this evening, and there are serval meal choices available at the campground restaurant.

Day 9: Zion National Park/Grand Canyon National Park
Location: Zion National Park
Meals Included: BREAKFAST, LUNCH

If you stayed up late with your new friends, you can sleep in the van. Today we wake up early to drive to Grand Canyon National Park, with a couple awesome pit stops along the way. The first stop is at Horseshoe Bend. This geological masterpiece was sculpted by the Colorado River. Go on and walk to the overlook, hike along the rim and stare down into the flowing river far below. Snap some photos with your friends and just enjoy the moment. Continue onwards to our next national park of the trip. En route, stop for lunch at our G for Good, family-owned Navajo food truck for some delicious tacos. Arrive at the awe-inspiring Grand Canyon—one of the world's Natural Wonders— and set up camp for the next two nights just in time for a spectacular sunset.

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.

ACTIVITY: Take a short hike to this spectacular horseshoe-shaped meander of the Colorado River. Stand atop steep orange-coloured sandstone cliffs and look out at Horseshoe Bend. Peer down more than 300m (1,000 ft) at the emerald river below.

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.

ACTIVITY: Get off the beaten track for an authentic Navajo meal that gives back to the community at the Native Grill Food Truck. Although the Grand Canyon is one of the most popular destinations to visit in the USA, the Indigenous community living on Navajo land captures less than 7% of the $1.5 billion that this region sees annually. Your meal stop at this family-owned enterprise benefits 50 community members directly, with ripple effects throughout Navajo Nation.

Day 10: Grand Canyon National Park
Location: Grand Canyon National Park
Meals Included: BREAKFAST, LUNCH, DINNER

After having breakfast and packing a lunch, get those water bottles ready because today is dedicated to the Grand Canyon. Starting from the South Rim, there are so many hikes to choose from that will take you deeper into the canyon where you can really appreciate the size and depth of this national park. Choose whichever trail you wish or do short bursts of multiple hikes, just make sure you bring plenty of water and take your time. You got this! Sit down for a picnic lunch in the park then maybe choose to rent a bike, or if you're feeling really adventurous, opt to take a legendary helicopter ride over the canyon. The choice is yours! After a full day in the park, sit down for an unforgettable pizza dinner along the rim of the Grand Canyon as the setting sun lights the sky.

ACTIVITY: Visit the south rim of the canyon for a great first impression. Marvel as the Grand Canyon unfolds before you. Don't get too close. The land drops almost straight down for more than 1,000m (3,280 ft) into the serpentine canyons below! The gorge is filled with rocky buttes, sheer limestone cliffs, and deep canyons all arrayed in a rainbow of colors. Words defy. This is truly one of the most magnificent sights on earth.

ACTIVITY: Opt to hike along the rim or down into the canyon. Experience breathtaking scenery with spectacular views. Bring lots of water, a hat and plenty of energy. Remember -- hiking down is optional, hiking back up is mandatory!

ACTIVITY: Find a spot to sit and dig in to the most scenic dinner you've ver had! Enjoy some pizza as the sun sets over the Grand Canyon offering breathtaking views while the canyon walls glow red and orange in the fading light. This is truly one of the great wonders. Enjoy the moment.

Day 11: Grand Canyon National Park/Joshua Tree National Park
Location: Grand Canyon National Park
Meals Included: BREAKFAST

Road trip! Get your kicks, because its time to drive along one of the most famous roads in history: Route 66. After you eat breakfast and break down camp, we head out and cruise south west toward Joshua Tree National Park. We'll stop in Seligman along Route 66 and then continue to Kingman, where you will have free time to grab lunch on your own. Throughout the drive, we will take short stops to admire the Mojave Desert, and the funky dessert trees that gave Joshua Tree it's name. Arrive to the camp site in the early evening and after setting up, you will have the night free to explore Pioneer Town. Watch the sky light up in flames during an incredible desert sunset and maybe throw down a blanket to watch for shooting stars tonight in one of California's clearest skies.

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.

ACTIVITY: Travel the historic Route 66 through the southwest.

ACTIVITY: Discover the rugged rock formations and iconic Joshua trees that gave this National Park it's name. Go for a hike, keep a sharp eye out for desert wildlife, and take in the incredible scenery.

Day 12: Joshua Tree National Park/Santa Monica
Location: Joshua Tree National Park
Meals Included: BREAKFAST

After another night under the stars, pack away your camping gear, have some breakfast at camp, and drive to one of the LA's most famous beaches for a day of fun. You'll have the entire afternoon free to explore Santa Monica and do whatever you please with your fellow Roamies. Opt to lounge on the beach, have some of the worlds best ice cream, take a ride on the pier, or just people watch with a spicy margarita at an open air bar. Whatever you choose, make it count! Tonight we'll stay at an awesome, hip hostel in Santa Monica.

TRANSPORT: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.

ACTIVITY: Make a stop at Santa Monica where you can choose to lounge in the sand, rollerblade on the sidewalks, bicycle along the waterfront, or take a walk down the pier. The choice is yours during your afternoon here.

Day 13: Santa Monica/Los Angeles
Location: Santa Monica

Say goodbye to your Roamies and depart at any time.

Not ready to leave? Your CEO can help with travel arrangements to extend your adventure.

ACTIVITY: Not ready to leave? Your CEO can help with travel arrangements to extend your adventure.

What's Included

  • Accommodation
    Camping (10 nts), hotel (1 nt), hostel (1 nt).

  • Meals
    10 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 2 dinners

  • Your G for Good Moment: Native Grill Food Truck Experience Your Welcome Moment: Welcome Moment - Meet Your CEO and Group Your Discover Moment: Yosemite National Park

  • All national park fees

  • Los Angeles Sightseeing With CEO

  • Coastal free time in Avila

  • Guided visit and hikes in Yosemite National Park

  • Sightseeing in Yosemite through Tioga Pass Tuolumne Meadows Lembert Dome Tenaya Lake, and Mono Lake

  • Death Valley National Park visit

  • Free time in Las Vegas

  • Bryce Canyon National Park visit and hike

  • Zion National Park visit and guided hike

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Accommodation

Camping (10 nts), hotel (1 nt), hostel (1 nt).

Transport

Air-conditioned private vehicle, hiking, walking.

Meals Included

10 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 2 dinners

Check out our Q&As

  • Emergency Fund

    Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an 'emergency' fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!

  • Important Notes

    1. An essential part of your trip is participation - from putting up your tent (while camping) or packing it away in the morning, to helping with meal preparation and cleaning up - it is all part of your adventure and when everyone puts in a little effort the trip will run smoothly. Your CEO will do all the meal planning, but we do ask the clients to help with the preparation and washing up. Team spirit is part of the fun! All camping equipment (with the exception of your sleeping bag and pillow) is supplied. We supply dome tents and assembly/disassembly takes only 5 minutes. All tents have built-in insect nets. Comfortable, self-inflating mattresses are also provided, which are approximately 4cm thick. 2. Proper sleeping bags are necessary for this tour. Evening temperatures can reach -9°C - 0°C. Please ensure that your sleeping bag is rated to (-17°C for spring and fall trips and 0°C for trips June - Sept). If you prefer you can purchase a proper sleeping bag on the first day of the trip. Prices range from $60-$150USD.  3. In order to cover the vast distance in North America to be able to visit several different parks and cities along our trip, we will have a couple of long driving days. 4. All walks and hikes proposed by our CEO will be easy to moderate level. You may choose to participate or not, but exploring our national parks on foot is part of our way of travelling. It’s a healthy way to discover North America’s beauty and landscape. 5. Please note that some trips could be a combination of multiple G Adventure tours. You should expect some group members to join or leave the tour between tour segments. 6. The American West is generally known for warm weather, but temperatures do vary significantly in the mountain and desert areas especially. The day time temperature could exceed 30 C, while the night time temperatures do regularly decrease to single digits, or even possible below freezing. Please be prepared for such extreme conditions. 7. Please note that the legal drinking age in the United States is 21 and in Canada, 19 (with Alberta and Quebec at 18). Many bars and clubs will ask for ID at the door, therefore listening to live music in certain bars or spending a night out in Las Vegas or New Orleans is not possible when you are under the legal age, even if you don't plan on consuming alcohol. Drinking laws in both countries are strictly enforced and our CEOs are unable to help those under age obtain alcohol of any kind. While this should not stop those under legal drinking age from booking a tour, it is important to note that if a traveller is under-age there are certain optional nighttime activities that they may not legally be able to participate in. When trying to book the right trip, we recommend that travellers under legal drinking age take this into consideration when booking a tour that visits several big cities.

  • Visas and Entry Requirements

    All countries require a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity). Contact your local embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. It is your own responsibility to have the correct travel documentation. Visa requirements for your trip will vary depending on where you are from and where you are going. We keep the following information up to date as far as possible, but rules do change and sometimes without warning. While we provide the following information in good faith, it is vital that you check the information yourself and understand that you are fully responsible for your own visa requirements. Visa information specific to your destination and nationality can be found in our Important Pre-Departure Information page here

  • Planeterra Foundation - the non-profit partner of G Adventures

    Planeterra International Foundation is a non-profit organization committed to turning travel into impact by helping local communities earn an income from tourism. Planeterra connects underserved local communities to the benefits of tourism by developing and supporting small community-owned businesses. These businesses support Indigenous people, empower women, grant youth access to employment opportunities, and protect the environment. Planeterra also works to ensure these businesses have a thriving customer base by integrating their projects into G Adventures’ itineraries globally. G Adventures is Planeterra’s largest corporate donor, covering all operating costs, so 100% of your donation will bring opportunity to people in need. G Adventures Dollar-a-day Program - Make Every Day Count - Turn your travel into impact with Planeterra Foundation. Did you know? Most communities around the world do not benefit from tourism. Give back to the places you visit on your travels by creating opportunities for local people to earn an income, and protect the environment. Make every day count by donating $1/day for the length of your trip, and join us in empowering the communities you will visit when you travel. 100% of your donation goes directly to Planeterra projects.

  • Laundry

    Laundry can be done while on tour. Some private campgrounds and most cities have laundromats where you can buy soap and wash your laundry in coin-operated machines. Your CEO will advise you along the trip where you will be able to do your laundry.

  • Packing List

    Camping: • Bug net/ bug spray • Day Pack (with water bladder or refillable bottle) • Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal) • Hiking boots/sturdy walking shoes • Sleeping bag and liner, 4 season • Small travel towel • Socks • Sunglasses • Sunscreen • Thermal base layer • Toiletries (Preferably biodegradable) • Travel pillow • Watch and alarm clock • Waterproof daypack cover • Windproof rain gear (Rain and Windproof rain gear - pants and jacket) • Your own inflatable sleeping pad (or you can use the one provided) Cold weather: • Long-sleeved shirts or sweater • Scarf • Warm gloves • Warm hat • Warm layers Documents: • Flight info (required) (Printouts of e-tickets may be required at the border) • Insurance info (required) (With photocopies) • Passport (required) (With photocopies) • Vouchers and pre-departure information (required) • Visas or vaccination certificates (With photocopies) Essentials: • Binoculars (optional) • Camera (With extra memory cards and batteries) • Cash, credit and debit cards • Day pack (Used for daily excursions or short overnights) • Ear plugs • First-aid kit (should contain lip balm with sunscreen, sunscreen, whistle, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids/plasters, tape, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, water purification tablets or drops, insect repellent, sewing kit, extra prescription drugs you may be taking) • Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal) • Fleece top/sweater • Footwear • Hat • Locks for bags • Long pants/jeans • Moneybelt • Outlet adapter • Personal entertainment (Reading and writing materials, cards, music player, etc.) • Reusable water bottle • Shirts/t-shirts • Sleepwear • Small travel towel • Sunglasses • Toiletries (Preferably biodegradable) • Watch and alarm clock • Waterproof backpack cover • Windproof rain jacket Health & Safety: • Hand sanitizer (required) • Face masks (Clients will be only be required to wear a face mask where it is mandated by local regulations.) • Pen (Please bring your own pen for filling out documents.) • Quick Covid Test/Antigen Test Warm Weather: • Sandals/flip-flops • Shorts/skirts (Longer shorts/skirts are recommended) • Sturdy water shoes/sandals • Sun hat/bandana • Swimwear

  • A Couple of Rules

    Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of people in the sex trade is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they utilize the services of paid sex workers, in any capacity.

  • Dossier Disclaimer

    The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary. VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.

  • Group Size Notes

    Max 13

  • Travel Insurance

    Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your leader, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy we require that at a minimum you are covered for medical expenses including emergency evacuation and repatriation. A minimum coverage of USD200,000 is required. G Adventures can provide you with the appropriate coverage. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Some tours include adventure activities that require extra coverage (e.g. crampon use); please review your itinerary and make sure that you are covered for all included activities. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.

  • Highlights

    Cruise through the dazzling neighbourhoods of LA, Sleep along the Pacific Coast in Avila, Stargaze in Yosemite National Park, Hike through the harsh landscapes of Death Valley, Witness the grandeur of Zion, Wander through the hoodoos of Bryce Canyon, Hike to view the impressive Horseshoe Bend, Stare in awe at the utter vastness of the Grand Canyon, Walk among the giant boulders in Joshua Tree, Travel along historic Route 66, Sit back and relax near the Santa Monica Pier

  • Joining Hotel

    For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent.

  • Accommodation

    Camping (10 nts), hotel (1 nt), hostel (1 nt).

  • Group Leader

    1 CEO (Chief Experience Officer) throughout.

  • International Flights

    Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.

  • Money Exchange

    The United States currency is the US Dollar (USD). Credit cards are accepted almost everywhere in the US and can be used to purchase small and large items. When purchasing products or services with a foreign credit card in the USA, you may be charged additional fees by your credit card company for foreign purchases. Credit cards and debit cards are very useful for cash advances but you must remember to bring your PIN number (be aware that many ATM machines only accept 4-digit PINs). Both Cirrus and Plus system cards are the most widely accepted debit cards. Both Visa and Master Cards are the most widely accepted credit cards. While ATMs are commonly available, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work check with your bank before you travel. A visit to an ATM can be arranged on Day 1 and other days of the trip. Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money. A combination of US Dollars as cash (preferably smaller bills, 5's, 10's and 20's), traveller’s cheques and credit cards is best. Currency exchange is best obtained prior to travel or at the airport, currency exchange is very difficult to find in the USA and most banks do not accommodate. Always take more rather than less, as you don't want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds. As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com

  • What to Take

    You will be on the move a lot, so our advice is to pack as lightly as possible. For days in the outdoors, we recommend the use of lightweight, breathable, moisture-wicking fabrics made of wool or synthetic fibers. Cotton is not recommended for days spent hiking as it does not allow for heat or moisture to enter or escape, and it will not dry easily once wet. We recommend using a backpack for your convenience, or a medium-sized suitcase if you prefer. Heavy luggage is not recommended for the health of the CEO, who will take a lead in loading the storage trailer. Due to space in the trailer, we will not be able to accommodate more than one piece of main luggage per person. A good size day-pack (20-35L) is also essential to carry your personal gear for the day, as access to luggage between destinations will be limited. This daypack will be used to carry your personal gear for the day, your lunch and a water bottle. The American west is generally known for warm weather, but temperatures do vary significantly in the mountain and desert areas especially. The day time temperature could exceed 30 C, while the night time temperatures do regularly decrease to single digits, or even possible below freezing. It is therefore important to pack clothes for warm days and cool evenings - a light jacket is necessary. Seasonal temperature ranges: March - May ; September to December: -7 C to +30 C June – August: 0 C to + 35 C Additionally, a set of smart casual clothes is also advisable.

  • Spending Money

    Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.

  • Joining Instructions

    Meeting Instructions WELCOME MEETING TIME: 8:30 AM WELCOME MEETING LOCATION : HI Santa Monica - Hotel Lobby. For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent. Please note that Day 1 is an arrival day and the tour departs from the joining hotel on Day 1. You will be greeted by your CEO and meet your fellow travellers. If you feel that your incoming flight will not arrive in time for the morning departure on Day 1, please consider booking pre-tour accommodation. A G Adventures CEO will organize a short meeting, during which you will meet other tour participants and receive information about general and specific aspects of the trip. After this brief meeting, you will depart for your first destination of the tour. Please note that if you arrive after the welcome meeting you will need to call our support line as soon as possible so that we can assist you in making your way to meet the group. Los Angeles Airport transportation to the HI Los Angeles Santa Monica (please note the starting hotel may differ) Rideshare service or taxi: Once you have recovered your bags exit your terminal. You can only pick up taxis and rideshare cars from the LAX-it area, located next to Terminal 1. For the other 8 terminals, there are shuttles that will take you to the LAX-it area. The shuttle stops are located on the Lower/Arrivals Level and they are identified by GREEN curbside pylons that read "LAX-it." Once on your way to the LAX-it lot, use your app to schedule your ride. The ride will take about 30-45 minutes and it will cost around $40-50 (actual rates depend on peak demand times). Taxis can be found in the same lot, and the cost and drive time will be similar.

  • Newsletter

    Our adventure travel e-newsletter is full of travel news, trip information, interesting stories and contests. To avoid missing out on special offers and updates from G Adventures, subscribe at www.gadventures.com/newsletters/ Stay current on how our company invests in our global community through our foundation – Planeterra. Sign up for Planeterra's monthly news to learn more about how to give back and support the people and places we love to visit.

  • Safety and Security

    Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers' cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewelery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your group leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it deemed necessary, due to safety concerns. Your Chief Experience Officer (CEO) will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy and explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions. Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards), have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s). Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk. Read more about travel safety for ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling.

  • Group Leader Description

    This G Adventures group trip is accompanied by one of our group leaders, otherwise known as a Chief Experience Officer (CEO). The CEO will be the group manager, leader and sometimes the driver - this person is knowledgeable in the routes travelled and will organize and lead the meal preparations and has experience in cooking a variety of local and international dishes for large groups. As the group coordinator and manager, the aim of the CEO is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. While not being guides in the traditional sense, you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. They will also offer suggestions for things to do and to see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While our CEOs are trained and have resources to assist them along the way, the United States is the fourth largest country on the planet, and it is impossible for them to know everything about this massive country. We recommend local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting - we think it's the best of both worlds. Please note that specific tour guide licenses are required to guide in certain cities and regions, and as such, our CEOs will oftentimes provide brief orientation walks or drives to point out useful places like supermarkets, main squares and ATMs but for more specific or in depth destination information, an official guided tour is recommended.

  • Itinerary Disclaimer

    While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission. Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.

  • About our Transportation

    For this trip we use 15-passenger vans for up to 14 people plus the CEO/Driver. These vans are durable vehicles that allow us to drive on most types of roads in North America. Each van has a front passenger seat and 4 benches that will accommodate 3 people each with mandatory seat belts to keep us secure and safe. No standing is permitted in these vehicles. This is not a physically demanding journey. There is air conditioning to cool things down on warm days to keep everyone more comfortable. Travelling can be difficult, with long drives and limited space in the van. Please take note of the travel times and distances in the above itinerary. Despite some of the long days, most travellers feel that the diversity of the North American landscape, culture and wildlife are all well worth the experience!

  • About Accommodation

    Accommodation will be varied throughout your adventure. We use a combination of hotels and hostels, but most of the nights on tour are spent camping in tents in public and private campgrounds. Multi-share accommodation, on a single-sex basis (typically 4-6 people per room), is common in the U.S. and is the way you will be spending your hostel night. We have specifically chosen unique accommodations to give local flavor to your trip. Couples: Please note that due to the types of accommodation used in the U.S., couples will likely be split into separate rooms where we use multi-share hostels. Pending availability, couples may be able to pay extra while on tour to have their own room in some destinations. All camping equipment (with the exception of your sleeping bag and pillow) is supplied, including comfortable camp mattresses. We supply dome tents that take only 5 minutes to assemble/disassemble. They are good quality, durable, industry-standard, oversized 2-person tents, each with 2 separate and convenient zip-up doors, so that each person has his/her own entrance. We use 2 types of campgrounds in North America: 1. Private campgrounds: These are privately run sites, usually with all services such as fire pits, picnic tables, drinking water, toilets & shower buildings. Some have small outdoor swimming pools and laundry facilities. These campgrounds are typically located near national park entrances or towns. 2. Public campgrounds: These are park-run sites, usually with basic facilities such as fire pits, picnic tables, and drinking water. In some cases, this type of campground doesn’t have showers, only pit toilets and a lake! In other locations, toilet and shower facilities may be located outside the campground, or at times in another location a drive away. Some may have shower fees for onsite facilities ($2-6/shower).

  • Solo Travellers

    We believe solo travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and solo travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.

  • Emergency Contact

    Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call the G Adventures Local Representative. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible. EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
 G Adventures Local Representative (Las Vegas) 
 From outside the USA: 1-725-201-1494 From within the USA: 725-201-1494 If you are unable for any reason to contact our local representative, please call the numbers listed below which will connect you directly with our Sales team who will happily assist you. Hours of operation by region can be found here. Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100 Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000 Calls from Germany: 0800 365 1000 Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618 Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307 Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999

  • Tipping

    It is customary in North America to tip service providers such as waiters, bartenders and taxi drivers, at approximately 18-20%, depending on the service. Tipping is an expected - though not compulsory - component of your tour program and an expression of satisfaction with the persons who have assisted you on your tour. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There are times during the trip where there is opportunity to tip any local guides used. Recommendations for tipping local guides would range from $2-8 USD per activity depending on the quality and length of the service; ask your CEO for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and culture. Also at the end of each trip if you felt your G Adventures Chief Experience Officer did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference; however as a guideline $5-10 USD per person, per day can be used as a guide. If your CEO(s) exceeded your expectations, feel free to tip more.

  • Optional Activities

    Yosemite National Park - Yosemite National Park Hike (Free) - Yosemite Bike Rental (30-40USD per person) - Mist Trail to Vernal and Nevada Falls Hike Las Vegas - Vegas Strip Visit (Free) - Las Vegas Show (60-200USD per person) Zion National Park - Watchman Trail Hike - The Narrows Hike - Scout Lookout Trail Grand Canyon - Grand Canyon Helicopter Tour Grand Canyon National Park - Bright Angel Trail Hike (Free) Los Angeles - Santa Monica Pier Visit (Free) Santa Monica - Rollerblades and Bike Rentals

  • Feedback

    After your travels, we want to hear from you! Your feedback information is so important to us that we'll give you 5% off the price of your next G Adventures trip if your feedback is completed on-line within 30 days of finishing your trip. Your tour evaluation will be e-mailed to you 24 hours after the conclusion of your trip. If you do not receive the tour evaluation link in the days after your tour has finished, please drop us a line at customersolutions@gadventures.com and we will send it on to you.

  • Arrival Complications

    We don't expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, please refer to the emergency contact details provided in this dossier and contact us as soon as possible. If you have a pre-booked transfer, and you have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the Starting Point hotel, following the Joining Instructions. Please apply to your travel agent on your return for a refund of the transfer cost if this occurs.

  • Meals Included

    10 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 2 dinners

  • Meals

    All included meals will be prepared from goods bought en route from supermarkets, local shops and markets. Breakfasts will generally consist of breads and cereals, if time allows a warm breakfast may be prepared. Many lunches will be provided en-route and will be light meals such as sandwiches and/or salads. All evening meals will be freshly-prepared hot meals, and will consist of a variety of continental and local dishes. If a meal is not included your CEO will provide suggested options to the group.

  • Transport

    Air-conditioned private vehicle, hiking, walking.

  • What's Included

    Your G for Good Moment: Native Grill Food Truck Experience Your Welcome Moment: Welcome Moment - Meet Your CEO and Group Your Discover Moment: Yosemite National Park. All national park fees. Los Angeles Sightseeing With CEO. Coastal free time in Avila. Guided visit and hikes in Yosemite National Park. Sightseeing in Yosemite through Tioga Pass Tuolumne Meadows Lembert Dome Tenaya Lake, and Mono Lake. Death Valley National Park visit. Free time in Las Vegas. Bryce Canyon National Park visit and hike. Zion National Park visit and guided hike. Horseshoe Bend hike. Native Grill stop for lunch. Grand Canyon National Park visit. Joshua Tree National Park visit. Visit Route 66. Free time in Santa Monica. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.

  • How long has the tour company been trading?

    G Adventures was established in 1990

  • Do you operate a “single share” option and how does it work?

    Most of our trips do not have a single supplement. This means that the accommodation is on a twin share basis and, if travelling on your own, you will be sharing a room with another G Adventures traveller of the same sex. Some tours have an optional single supplement. An optional service that may be available is called "My Own Room". This service allows solo travellers to request their own room.

  • Can I join the tour once it has departed?

    It's extremely difficult if not impossible to join a tour after it has begun. It is possible to leave a tour early however you will be responsible for your own arrangements from the moment you decide to leave the tour. You would also be responsible for all costs associated with joining a tour late or leaving one early. If you feel this may be necessary, please consult us before you book.

  • What policies are in place for Covid-19?

    https://www.gadventures.com/travel-with-confidence/

  • What Ethical Travel credentials does the tour company have?

    https://www.gadventures.com/about-us/core-values/

Reviews of this Operator

Lynsey M, UK  

Rio de Janeiro to Buenos Aires: Waterfalls & White Sands

08-Nov-2021

This tour was very good. I would reccomend it. It is great to see the difference in the three countries, Iguassu Falls definitely a highlight on my whole South America trip.

Connie McKain Albright  

Galapagos

10-Jan-2023

This was our first trip with G Adventures. We took the 8 day trip around Galapagos on their ship Yolita II. The guide, Adrienne, was knowledgeable and very pleasant. Each day had a variety of activities to choose from so you could fill your day or pick and choose what you wanted to do. The guide knew where to look for various animals so we saw an abundance of wildlife - lots of different sea birds, sea lions, a few kinds of iguanas, and many kinds of fishes. The only negative, and it's not G Adventures fault, is that the little ship rocks and rolls and night which can make sleeping challenging.

Trustpilot
Tina. G, Canada  

DAK

08-Nov-2021

The tour was great! Our guide Peter was very knowledgeable and gave us just the right amount of information about the sights and animals we were seeing. He was also very personable and had a great sense of humour. Our cook was great as well! They were both flexible and accomodated our requests to spend longer looking at some animals, to visit craft markets, etc. The lodge accommodations both inside and outside Kruger National Park were fantastic.

Sandra Salter  

I have taken four trips with G…

18-Dec-2022

I have taken four trips with G Adventures. The Guides have been so knowledgeable and friendly. Each trip has been thoroughly planned. The trips have been once in a lifetime experiences.

Trustpilot
Jil S, Canada  

Costa Rica Adventure

08-Nov-2021

The tour was excellent! I think there was something for everyone on this tour... lots of hiking and nature walks for nature lovers, a plethora of optional activities for the adventurous and lots of downtime for the ones who just want to relax. I loved it!

Fergus Lawrence Park   Uk

Sailing Thailand - Phuket to Phuket

18-Dec-2023

Fantastic trip overall with very efficient staff on board. Fantastic food throughout. Deluxe cabin was disappointing and not as advertised and many problems with the air conditioning in our cabin meant we had 2 sleepless nights.

Fergus Lawrence Park   Uk

Sailing Thailand - Phuket to Phuket

18-Dec-2023

Fantastic trip overall with very efficient staff on board. Fantastic food throughout. Deluxe cabin was disappointing and not as advertised and many problems with the air conditioning in our cabin meant we had 2 sleepless nights.

Dates & Availability

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Jul 17, 2024 - Jul 29, 2024
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Jul 31, 2024 - Aug 12, 2024
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Aug 14, 2024 - Aug 26, 2024
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Book with Confidence

  • Free Date Changes

    G Adventures allows you to make 10 free date changes, as long as the change is made at least 45 days before the start of the tour.

  • Transfer as credit to Future Tours

    G Adventures allows you to transfer existing payments to a future tour to avoid cancellation fees if you can't travel and inform g adventures, 45 days before departure.

  • Low Deposit

    G Adventures requires a minimum deposit of 200 GBP per person or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 60 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of g adventures charges.

    Up to 60 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of deposit.

    At 59 days before tour starts: Forfeit 50% of booking price.

    At 29 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

  • Travel With Confidence Policy

    Our Travel with Confidence policy was created to highlight the measures G Adventures has taken in
    response to the increased focus on health and safety, mask-wearing, hygiene and physical distancing
    coming out of the pandemic. This policy complements our Book with Confidence policy - which
    provides additional flexibility and freedom for your travellers during the booking phase - and will, we
    believe, provide additional reassurance to those considering travel to travel with us. The safety of
    your travellers has always been our top priority, which is why new physical distancing and cleaning
    measures have been put in place on all of our tours. Our Travel with Confidence policy features
    health and safety procedures from the moment your travellers arrive on tour to the moment they
    leave, without taking away from having the time of their lives. While on tour, it is a requirement that
    your travellers follow the directions of their CEO at all times to help keep their fellow group-mates
    safe, as well as local residents. The policy will evolve as time goes on and as we continue to monitor
    local public health recommendations, but what won’t change is our commitment to keeping your
    travellers safe as they explore our big, beautiful world.

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