From the White House to honky tonks and Elvis’ Heartbreak Hotel, everyone who’s anyone knows that the eastern coast is where to be!
O say can you see, a once in a lifetime adventure spanning from the Big Apple to the Big Easy. On this expertly crafted, 11-day road trip across the eastern United States, you’ll see the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia, walk Johnny Cash’s line in Nashville, and discover Elvis’ Heartbreak Hotel in Memphis. From the White House to honky-tonks and voodoo priests, everyone who’s anyone knows that the East Coast is where to be!
We spend 11 days exploring USA. We visit New York, Washington DC, , Asheville, Nashville, Memphis, New Orleans.
What Is Included...
Inclusions for 2020 trips are below.
Your fantastic Busabout crew
10 nights’ accommodation
All coach transport
- Run the Rocky steps in Philadelphia
- Experience Asheville’s hip bohemian vibe
- Party in the French Quarter of New Orleans
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11 Day Itinerary
Southeast Trail 11 day full itinerary breakdown and route map
New York to Philadelphia to Washington D.C.
Our 11-day adventure begins in the Big Apple: New York City. Don’t get comfy though, because we’re off to our first stop, Philadelphia, bright and early. In Philly, you’re free to explore, relax, feast, or meander. Why not follow in Rocky Balboa's footsteps and jog the 72 steps leading up to the Philadelphia Museum of Arts? History buffs should be sure to check out the famous Liberty Bell, an iconic symbol of American independence. Next, we’ll be travelling to Washington D.C. Upon arrival, we’ll take a driving tour of the city to snag a quick look at all of the best bits before you’re free to spend the evening however you see fit. We recommend a sunset view from the Arlington, the Iwo Jima Memorials and a cheeky drink in a local bar.
Today, head out into the United States capital city and see it your way. In the morning, you have the option of a bike tour of the capital area. You’ll soak in the sights of the White House, the Capitol Building, and the Washington and Lincoln Memorials. In the afternoon, why not indulge in a tour of the Capitol Building or the White House and witness the world’s foremost political power in action. If politics isn’t your thing, there are more than 17 free Smithsonian Museums darted around DC, any of which are well worth the visit! For anyone looking to blow some dollars and undergo the genuine American shopping experience, Georgetown isn’t far and can cater to all your spending needs. Tonight, go happy hour hunting in any number of Washington bars.
Washington D.C. to Asheville
We’ll be rolling out of D.C. in the early morning with Asheville ahead of us. When we arrive in the afternoon we’ll have a quick rest before it’s back out to explore this vibrant, mountain nestled city. Together, we’ll follow a sculptural urban walking trail designed to honour the people and communities that moulded Asheville into the gorgeous city it is today. Come evening, we’ll head out on a walking tour of the city before meandering over to a rooftop bar for views of the sun setting behind the magnificent Blue Ridge Mountains, and relax until the stars arrive. Under the blanket of night, we’ll hit the lively streets to experience Asheville’s famous musical and culinary scenes.
Asheville awaits today, and you’re free to see it however you please. From beer, to arts, to architecture, Asheville has it all. You have the option of joining your guide and getting back to nature today – we’ll head down to the Blue Ridge Parkway and stop for hikes, visit some waterfalls, and hit some lookouts. If that’s not your vibe, you can visit the 19th century Biltmore Estate, an enormous French-inspired chateau constructed by George Vanderbilt. The estate has been utilised in cinema since the 1940s and was featured in Richie Rich, Forrest Gump, and Hannibal! A stop off in the Arts District is a must for anyone with an eye for style. Here, you’ll be lost in a sea of studios, murals, galleries, and street musicians. Next, head over to the Industrial District to discover why Asheville’s affectionately referred to as Beer Town. With 30 craft breweries and even beer flavoured doughnuts, the South Slope Brewery Zone is easily one of the best places to kickstart a memorable night.
Asheville to Nashville
Day five puts us down in Nashville, Tennessee: the home of country tunes, red-hot chicken wings, and rowdy line dancing. As we hit the road we’ll be stopping off for lunch in Knoxville, a charming town with a bustling market square. For city views, you can venture into the iconic observation deck of the Sunsphere for a gallery of Knoxville images and a 360 degree view of the city. When we arrive in Nashville, we’ll head out to experience some of the city’s famous music scene. You’ll spend your evening being treated to live music, good food, and a whole load of laughs.
You’re set loose, yet again, on another unsuspecting city. There’s plenty to see and do in Nashville’s colourful streets but we recommend embracing the country spirit and checking out the RCA Studios or the Johnny Cash Museum. Better yet, meander over to the Grand Opry, which is where country music was first made famous. For views of the city and surrounding river, be sure to walk the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge; an impressive feat of engineering and one of the longest pedestrian bridges in the world. Tonight you are free to try and catch a show at the Ryman Theatre, the former home of the Grand Ole Opry, or bar hop all the way down Broadway.
Nashville to Memphis
This morning we’ll be making the pilgrimage from the home of country music to the birthplace of blues, soul, and rock & roll: Memphis. When we arrive in the early evening, we’ll kick things off with a tour of the city to get us orientated. We’ll pass famous sites, such as the National Civil Rights Museum, the Rock n Soul Museum, and Mud Island. Tonight we’ll venture to Beale Street, which is historic for its impact on blues! Dine and drink the night away in venues frequented by legends like Muddy Waters, B.B. King, and Louis Armstrong.
It’s time to rock your way across Memphis on another free day. Fans of Elvis Presley should consider a trip to Graceland, where the King lived in his mansion. Explore the musical legend’s home-turn-museum and visit his final resting place. The city is also home to the infamous Lorraine Motel, where Civil Rights Activist Martin Luther King Jr was assassinated. Now the motel stands as a museum to Civil Rights and all of Doctor King’s achievements. If you’re not music-ed out, take a tour of Sun Studio and see where legends like Johnny Cash, BB King and Elvis recorded. Tonight, head back to Beale Street for more soulful blues, fine food, and cocktails.
Memphis to New Orleans
We bid farewell to Memphis bright and early and make our way to our headline city and home of smooth jazz, New Orleans. After arriving in the afternoon, we’ll head out to explore the city’s oldest area: the French Quarter and Jackson Square. Here we’ll enjoy heritage houses, vibrant street performers and a mouth-watering variety of restaurants! After a soulful wander around these quaint, colourful streets, we’ll delve deeper into the Big Easy for a night of unbeatable jazz and slick New Orleans cocktails.
Our last full day on the trip dawns and we urge you start it with a beignet pastry from Cafe du Monde! There’s an incredible variety of activities and sights in New Orleans, ranging from art and WW2 Museums to ghost walks and flea markets. Head out in any direction and you’ll find something worth seeing! We recommend a bike tour for the best coverage or even a bike rental. If the city’s unique spiritual side is what you’re craving than take a trip to Rev Zombie’s House of Voodoo for all things folkways. Tonight we’ll visit French Street to end our tour in style. We’ll experience live music whilst perusing casual eateries and sipping on cocktails. What better way cap off an incredible adventure?
Unfortunately, all good things come to an end and today, once we’ve shared one last epic group breakfast, it’s time to say our farewells and go our separate ways. We hope to see you again!
Frequently Asked Questions about the Southeast Trail
Tour starts from:
TBC, New York at 8:00am
Tour ends in:
TBC, New Orleans at 10:00am
Accommodation is included for this trip. You will stay in 2-3 star hotels twin share and hostel multi-share .
You can upgrade to a twin private (min. 2 people) from MyTrip once you have made a booking.
* All upgrades are subject to availability.
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Here is the list of available optional activities, excursions and freetime avaiable on this trip:
- Visit the Smithsonian Museums in Washington D.C.
- Cruise the National Mall in Washington D.C. on a bike tour
- Learn about America’s revolutionary history in Philadelphia at the Liberty Bell
- Explore the hiking trails in the Blue Ridge Mountains near Asheville
- Enjoy craft beer at one of Asheville’s burgeoning craft breweries
- Visit Sun Studios in Memphis where it is claimed rock & roll was born
- Listen to live blues on the historic Beale Street, Memphis
- Explore country music's past at the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville
- Step out with the locals on Frenchman street in New Orleans
- Listen to jazz music in its home of the Big Easy, New Orleans
All optional extras and excursions will be available to book through your Busabout Guide on the trip.
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Depending on your region, tours costing more than 200 GBP / 300 EUR / 400 USD / 400 CAD / 400 AUD / 400 NZD / 2000 ZAR: a non-refundable deposit of 50 GBP / 75 EUR / 100 USD / 100 CAD / 200 AUD / 200 NZD / 1000 ZAR per person per tour is required, but if the booking is made within 45 days of the nominated departure date the full amount payable must be made at the time of booking.
Yes, depending on availability there is no problem to change dates (a small fee applies). If the new date is more expensive the difference will also need to be paid. You can also transfer the funds you’ve already paid over to another trip of the same or higher value if you change your mind, as long as it’s outside of the notification period.