Day 1: London – Atlanta
Catch a flight from London to Atlanta, arriving the same day. Once you land, pick up your hire car and drive into the city centre for your overnight stay. Spend your first evening in the South discovering the nightlife of Atlanta, from the chic restaurants of Buckhead to the alternative vibe of the Little Five Points Neighbourhood. Stay 1 night at the Hilton Atlanta (or similar).
Day 2: Atlanta – Savannah (approx. 248 miles)
Spend the morning in Atlanta. Despite its size, Georgia’s capital retains a laid-back southern charm and offers plenty to see and do, including the Georgia Aquarium, the CNN Center and the World of Coca Cola. Leave after lunch and head for the coast. You’ll pass through Georgia. Savannah is ‘the Grande Dame’ of the South, lazily draped with Spanish moss and wisteria, grand old antebellum homes and a true Southern welcome. Grab yourself a cool mint julep and soak up the atmosphere. Stay 2 nights at the Staybridge Suites Savannah Historic District (or similar).
Day 3: Savannah
Savannah is a living museum of 250 years of history, with grand old colonial mansions, stately shaded squares and cobbled streets. Perhaps start your day’s exploration with an Old Town Trolley tour for an informative overview or see the historic district in style with a horse and cart ride. Many of the antebellum merchants’ homes are open to the public, including the Owens-Thomas House and the beguiling Mercer Williams House Museum.
Day 4: Savannah – Charleston (approx. 106 miles)
Make your way along the coast from Georgia into South Carolina. There are tempting island retreats to stop at along the way, including stunning Hilton Head Island and South Carolina’s second oldest city, Beaufort, located on Port Royal Island. Beaufort boasts a scenic riverfront and a stunning Historic District. Charleston itself radiates the true romance of the south and has the largest old town area in the world. After an afternoon of exploring, King Street provides all that you need for evening entertainment with its many restaurants and watering holes. Stay 1 night at the Holiday Inn Charleston Historic District (or similar).
Day 5: Charleston – Asheville (approx. 267 miles)
It’s time to leave the coast and head back inland, driving through South and North Carolina to Asheville. Avoid the highway for the early part of your journey and you’ll be rewarded with views of grand river plantations, cotton fields and pretty towns along the banks of the Edisto River. Back on the interstate, the landscape becomes more undulating as you head through the beautiful Sumter National Forest and across the state line into North Carolina. Stay 2 nights at the Crowne Plaza Resort Asheville (or similar).
Day 6: Asheville
Spend a full day exploring this vibrant North Carolina city with its fabulous Blue Ridge Mountain backdrop. The city is renowned for its arts scene and historic architecture including the majestic domed Basilica of Saint Lawrence and the 19th century Biltmore Estate, the largest private home in the USA where you can come face to face with paintings by the likes of Renoir, Monet and Whistler. At the end of a day of sightseeing, treat yourself to a meal in one of the city’s great farm to fork rest.
Day 7: Asheville – Great Smoky Mountains – Nashville (approx. 294 miles)
Be prepared for plenty of stops today as you drive along the world famous Blue Ridge Parkway which winds its way through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This park, straddling the border between North Carolina and Tennessee is America’s most visited National Park and world renowned for its beautiful forested peaks and animal diversity. Continue to Nashville where you can relax with some real southern fried chicken at the Loveless Motel & Café or Hattie B’s. Stay 2 nights at the Inn at Opryland (or similar).
Day 8: Nashville
There’s a full day to explore today. Visit the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, the newly opened Johnny Cash Museum, or make a pilgrimage to Lynchburg for a tour of the Jack Daniel’s Distillery. Why not buy some cowboy boots in one of the many Western shops along Broadway to look the part? In the evening, visit the Grand Ole Opry for live music performances or wander the Broadway, dropping in to some of the many Honky Tonks which offer a variety of different artists and bands trying to make the cut.
Day 9: Nashville – Memphis (approx. 212 miles)
Your next stop en route to St Louis is Memphis. Memphis, along the Mississippi River in southwest Tennessee, is known for its music and Southern cuisine. Blues, jazz and rock 'n' roll spill out from the clubs along Beale Street, and restaurants dish up barbecue and soul food. Stay 2 nights at the Doubletree by Hilton Hotel Memphis (or similar).
Day 10: Memphis
It’s all about the music in Memphis. Why not pay homage to some of the musical greats at the Rock ‘n’ Soul and Stax museums, or tour Sun Studio where Elvis Presley first recorded and then drive out his former home at Graceland. Don’t miss lively Beale Street with its colourful collection of jazz, blues and rock bars. Away from the beats of Beale Street, you can also learn about the struggle for civil right at the former Lorraine Motel where Martin Luther King was killed in 1967. The building now houses the National Civil Rights Museum which traces the roots of the civil rights movement from the 17th century to the present day.
Day 11: Memphis - Little Rock (approx. 137 miles)
Continue your journey west along 1-40 to Little Rock. The state capital of Arkansas is also the cultural and urban centre of the state, with the Ozark and Ouachita Mountains making a lovely backdrop. Here you can learn all you ever wanted to about 42nd President Bill Clinton, including a replica of the Oval Office at the William J. Clinton Presidential Library and Park. There are plenty of museums and historic buildings to discover too along with some great attractions along the pretty Arkansas River. You might also like to drive down to Hot Springs for a relaxing spa treatment in an historic bathhouse. Stay 1 night at the Hampton Inn Suites Little Rock Downtown (or similar).
Day 12: Little Rock – Springfield (approx. 216 miles)
Leave Little Rock today and head north across the Missouri state line to Springfield. The state's third largest city has something for everyone, from historic battlefields and stalactite filled caverns to great shopping and boutique breweries. The city is also known as the ‘Gateway to the Great Outdoors’ with miles of scenic trails for cycling, biking and getting out on the water. Stay 1 night at the Best Western Route 66 Rail Haven (or similar).
Day 13: Springfield - St Louis (approx. 216 miles)
Pick up iconic Route 66 today as you drive through Missouri to your last stop in St Louis. Along the way you’ll pass typical Mother Road attractions like the famous Wrink’s Market and Munger Moss Motel in Lebanon. There’s also lovely scenery to be had at the Devil’s Elbow stretch of the old road as well as the Meramac Caves, promoted as a tourist stop since 1935. Just before you reach the city, you might want to stop for a sweet treat at Ted Drew’s Frozen Custard, a dessert shop that has been serving Route 66 travellers since 1929. This evening, why not visit a blues club or try some delicious barbeque in the Soulard District. Stay 1 night at the Omni Majestic Hotel (or similar).
Day 14: St Louis – London
Spend a morning in St Louis, where you might have time to cruise down the Mississippi aboard a traditional paddle steamer or buy some last minute souvenirs. Later, return your hire car at the airport and catch an overnight flight back to London.
Included in your Fly Drive Holiday
- Hotel accommodation
- Economy flights
- Airport taxes, fuel & duty
- Car rental where stated
- Any applicable offers
Not included: Airport transfers, one-way car-hire drop off fees, meals, sightseeing & personal expenses
Flights from regional UK airports available
Remember, we can tailor-make your holiday to suit your needs, contact our travel experts today, call us on 0208 290 9751.