Commemorate America's birthday on a dual 11-day rail-river cruise vacation.
Commemorate America's birthday on a dual 11-day rail-river cruise vacation. Start your journey in the Midwest metropolis of Chicago. Take time at leisure to explore this beautiful city by visiting classic highlights such as the Art Institute, Field Museum, shopping down Magnificent Mile and seeing the city from high above at the Willis Tower observation deck.
Following your days of exploration in Chicago, celebrate July 4th as you board the Steamboat Express bound for St. Louis. Visit the legendary St. Louis Arch for the perfect view of the country's largest fireworks display.
From St. Louis board the steamboat American Queen for your journey up the Mississippi. Enjoy the nostalgia of riding on a classic American steamboat and take in the sights as the banks of the Mississippi envelop you. Your first stop is the quintessential location for a steamboat adventure, Mark Twain's hometown, Hannibal, Missouri. Witness firsthand the place that Twain wrote vividly about in his writings.
After your time in Hannibal continue your journey north to the river town of Dubuque, Iowa. Full of antique shops and Victorian style houses, the quaint town of Dubuque is the perfect way to spend the day. Continue your steamboat journey to La Crosse, Wisconsin. From the small shops, beautiful waterfront and Frank Lloyd Wright homes, this picturesque town is the ideal steamboat destination. From La Crosse, head towards Winona. Considered to be one of the most beautiful places in the country, there is plenty of cultural and architectural sights for you to discover.
Your trip is almost over, but not before you visit the 19th century river town of Red Wing, Minnesota. Covered in old-fashioned storefronts and classic downtown, this is an ideal destination to have a final port of call. Disembark in St. Paul for the conclusion to your rail-river cruise vacation.
Scenic Highlights and Inclusions
• Complimentary train travel to Chicago from any Midwestern city when
booked early. Guests living in the West or East may take advantage of our
special $99.00 train fare to Chicago when booked early.
• Fully hosted by professional tour manager from start to finish to handle all of the details. Also, special cocktail parties and events, both on the boat and ashore are included.
• Two-night deluxe hotel stay in the heart of downtown at the fabled Palmer House Hilton, in the heart of Chicago's entertainment district.
• Travel aboard the Riverboat Express, our own classic 1940's Streamliner train between Chicago and St. Louis with complimentary meals and drinks while aboard. A beautifully restored Club Car originally built for the Santa Fe Railroad, this is a great start to the holiday and evokes the heyday of grand train travel.
• Overnight hotel accommodations in St. Louis at the Hilton Doubletree at Union Station. We have left plenty of time free for exploring St. Louis including the famous Arch and Union Station.
• St. Louis sightseeing tour on sailing day by its most acclaimed historian, Nini Harris, including Forest Park, the Cathedral of St. Louis and the Euclid District. Many of guests consider this in-depth brilliant tour one of the highlights of the entire vacation.
• Rare seven-night Steamboat cruise from St. Louis to St. Paul aboard the paddlewheeler Queen of the Mississippi with ports of call including Hannibal, Burlington, Davenport, Dubuque, La Crosse, and Red Wing. All meals and entertainment while aboard are included.
• Special $99.00 train fare home to any US city after the tour. (Travel back to Chicago may require an overnight stay due to train schedule).
Day 1 - Chicago, the Windy City
Arrive in Chicago and check in to your historic hotel. The balance of the day is at your leisure. Meet your fellow travelers at a special cocktail reception this evening. Overnight Palmer House Hilton. (R)
Day 2 - Chicago at Your Leisure
The entire day is free for you to indulge in Chicago's many offerings. Shop along the Magnificent Mile, stroll along the lakefront, visit one of the city's amazing museums, or go to the top of Willis Tower for panoramic views of the city and its outlying areas. Overnight Palmer House Hilton.
Day 3 - Steamboat Express to St. Louis
Happy Fourth of July! Depart the hotel this morning and board the Steamboat Express bound for St. Louis. Upon arrival transfer to your hotel, located just a block from the St. Louis Arch and a perfect location for viewing the spectacular fireworks show tonight! Overnight Hilton at the Ballpark. (CB, L)
Day 4 - St. Louis Sightseeing / American Queen Departure
We depart this morning on a sightseeing tour of this historic city. Highlights include Forest Park, the lovely Cathedral of St. Louis, and the Missouri Botanical Gardens. A special treat is a visit to nearby Meramac Caverns, a sprawling underground cave once used as a hideout by the infamous Jesse James. Later today, we board the steamboat American Queen, docked right under the Arch. At 7:00 pm, the calliope plays, the big red paddlewheel turns and the steamboat begins its voyage of discovery. Overnight onboard vessel. (D)
Day 5 - On the River
Today brings an entire day of steamboating, which gives you plenty of time to explore the ship. Enjoy lunch on the deck as you float past incredible scenery or relax with a cool libation in the Calliope Bar as the American Queen makes its way down the Mississippi River toward the junction where it meets the Ohio River. As the calliope plays, entire towns turn out along the riverbanks to see this legendary steamboat. This evening is the ship's welcome cocktail party as we steam down the mighty Mississippi. Overnight onboard vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 6 - Hannibal
Was there ever a town more linked to steamboating than charming Hannibal, MO' Explore the town during today's visit, perhaps exploring the cave Mark Twain vividly described in his writings. Overnight onboard vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 7 - On the River
The day is spent steamboating past some of the prettiest scenery in America as the steam calliope toots and entire towns come out to the banks of the river to witness the ship's passing. Today is the famous "southern picnic" with platters of fried chicken, baked ham, gumbo, mud pie, and southern specialties. Overnight onboard vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 8 - Dubuque
Dubuque, IA, with its antique stores and Victorian buildings, welcomes us today. We have also included a special excursion: a visit to Galena, IL. Overnight onboard vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 9 - La Crosse
Picturesque La Crosse. WI, with its great collection of Frank Lloyd Wright homes. lovely waterfront, and small shops, welcomes us today. Overnight onboard vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 10 - Red Wing
Historic Red Wing, MN, with its quaint downtown center, 19th century storefronts and very busy railroad mainline, is our final port of call today. Later tonight, celebrate your Midwestern steamboat adventure at the Captain's Farewell Dinner. Overnight onboard vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 11 - St. Paul
Disembark in St. Paul, MN, where your rail-river cruise vacation comes to an end.
Dates & Prices
Select from the packages below to view prices for this tour.
|2nd July 2014||$4,795||Book Now|
|2nd July 2014||$5,395||Book Now|
|2nd July 2014||$5,895||Book Now|
|2nd July 2014||$6,045||Book Now|
|2nd July 2014||$7,395||Book Now|
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