Fly into Nashville International Airport, pick up your rental car for the week, and make your way to your accommodations at the historic Hermitage Hotel. Enjoy the day at leisure to get acclimated to your new surroundings.
Today, you will kick off your trip with a self-guided tour of the Country Music Hall of Fame, followed by a private guided tour of RCA Studio B– where Dolly Parton, Elvis Presley and Willie Nelson once graced the halls with their musical talents. After the tour concludes, you will have time for lunch and the afternoon at leisure.
In the evening, you will experience Nashville’s longest-running country music stage show, The Grand Ole Opry as a true backstage VIP. Walk in the footsteps of country music's superstars during your behind-the-scenes tour, and get an exclusive look at the show that made country music famous! You will be able to watch the first few songs of the night’s performance from backstage before being escorted to your seats to watch the rest of the set.
Enjoy today at your leisure, exploring Nashville’s musical heritage and gaining and understanding of its nickname, “The Music City.” Make sure to sample its signature dish, hot chicken, as well as countless other Southern home-style delights. In the evening, cruise down the “Nashville Strip,” and pop into its countless honky-tonk bars to grab a drink, and catch some local live music by up-and-coming country music stars.
Today you will check out of your hotel after breakfast and say goodbye to Nashville before continuing on to the rich cultural hub of Memphis, the birthplace of rock n’ Roll. First, head to Graceland, the palatial estate that once belonged to none other than the King of Rock n’ Roll: Elvis Presley, for an ultimate behind-the-scenes VIP tour. Arrive in time for an included lunch at Vernon’s Smokehouse, located on the property, to sample some of Elvis’ favorite home-cooked dishes. Afterwards, meet your Graceland VIP Guide for a tour of the halls where Elvis once resided with his family, stopping to admire his famed Jungle Room, and other opulent living spaces, all restored exactly to the way they looked in 1977. Once the guided tour concludes, explore other areas of the mansion with full access to the Presley Motors Automobile Museum, Elvis’ two private jets, the Career Museum featuring Elvis artifacts, movie memorabilia and costumes, as well as a rotating temporary Discovery Exhibit and an exclusive VIP exhibit and photo-opportunity. Finish up at Graceland, and continue onwards to Memphis, where you will check in to your hotel, and have some time to explore your new surroundings.
Today you will explore some Memphis’ best-known historic sites and museums on a full day of touring with a Memphis local music and history expert. Your morning will begin with a visit to the National Civil Rights Museum. Housed in the Lorraine Motel, this museum marks the infamous site of the assassination of civil rights movement leader Martin Luther King Jr. From here your guide will take you to the Stax Museum of American Soul Music, where you will see a rare collection of more than 2,000 soul music artefacts, interactive exhibits, films and galleries. The world’s only museum dedicated to American Soul music, Stax Records was once the musical home of Otis Redding, Albert King, Eddie Floyd and Wilson Pickett. Conclude your tour at Stax, and proceed onwards to Sun Studio, “the birthplace of rock n’ roll.” Opened by rock pioneer, Sam Phillips in 1950, Sun Studios has been preserved as a fully functioning recording studio and museum. You will stand where Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis recorded their timeless hits. Return to your hotel in the late afternoon, and enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.
Today, you will say goodbye to Tennessee, and begin the trip to New Orleans, stopping along the way at landmarks on the historic Mississippi Blues Trail. The Blues Trail is a series of historic markers that traces the birth, growth and influence of Blues music in its homeland of the Mississippi Delta. Your Memphis music expert guide will meet you at key sites such as the Delta Blues Museum in famous blues towns such as Indianola and Clarksdale, home of the Delta Blues Museum. After your blues tour concludes, say goodbye to your guide, and proceed to Natchez, Mississippi. Arrive in the early evening, check into your accommodations, a gorgeous early 19th-century plantation mansion which has been converted into a luxurious historic inn. Enjoy your evening at leisure, and make sure to take a stroll through the property’s 26 acres of perfectly manicured gardens full of blooming magnolias, roses and azaleas.
In the morning, continue your drive to New Orleans. Arrive in the afternoon, check into your hotel and meet your local expert guide for a customizable tour of the city’s storied French Quarter. Dating back to the French and Spanish colonial eras, The French Quarter is home to many of New Orleans’ most treasured attractions, and retains a distinct, cross-cultural architectural style found nowhere else in the United States. You may elect to focus your tour on a number of various topics such as architecture, voodoo, folklore or piracy, or simply enjoy the sights and sounds of this timeless neighbourhood and let your guide take the reins.
Later in the evening, prepare for an aural feast led by an expert, local musicologist. Widely regarded as the birthplace of, and best place to hear jazz, New Orleans nevertheless boasts a colorful musical heritage spans many genres and styles. Wander through the city streets as you hear the stories, legends, and historical facts about New Orleans' melodic history. Pop into different clubs, stroll past live brass bands on the streets, and if time permits, head to Congo Square. It was here, during the 18th and 19th centuries, that slaves congregated on Sundays with African song and dance, a musical tradition that persists to this day. By the end of the tour, you will be privy to all the city's popular venues and burgeoning talents!
After breakfast today, head to Mardi Gras World for a truly unique New Orleans experience. Mardi Gras World is a 300,000 square-foot warehouse and museum where dedicated artists work year-round to construct the spectacular floats that make up the Big Easy’s annual Mardi Gras parade, as well as set pieces and props for Disney World and Universal Studios! You will learn about the traditions and history of Mardi Gras in Cajun country, sample traditional Mardi Gras snacks, and see the artists in action on a tour the workshop floor.
Stop for lunch after your tour concludes, then get out of the city and make your way deep into the Louisiana Bayou. Led by your Cajun naturalist guide and captain, embark on a private, high-speed airboat tour through the swamp. Allow yourself to be immersed in some of the country’s most beautiful scenery, as you admire Spanish moss draping from impressive cypress trees and the sweet smell of wild azaleas in the air. With your knowledgeable local guide on hand, you will be able to get up-close-and-personal with wild alligators, turtles, and exotic endangered birds. Learn about the ecology of this distinct habitat, and the way of life of the people who inhabit it, then return back to your hotel with greater respect for the vast swamps of for the Louisiana Bayou.
This morning, check out of your hotel and make your way to Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport, where you will drop off your rental car in time for your flight home.
Duration: 9 days
Available: Year Round
From $5,345 Per Person
Terms & Conditions Prices based on per person double/twin share. Prices correct as at 19 April 2018 but may fluctuate if surcharges, fees, taxes or currency change. Offer is subject to availability. Please check all prices, availability and other information with your travel consultant before booking. Bookings must be made direct with Concierge Traveller. Package cancellation fees apply. All savings and bonus nights (if applicable) are included in the advertised price. Offers may be withdrawn without notice and are not combinable with any other offers unless stated. Local city taxes may apply.
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