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A stars and stripes summer: Jet off to the USA for the sunny season

25th June 2012 Print
Art deco South Beach, Miami, Florida

Whether relaxing in a slick rooftop bar in New York City, sunbathing on the snow-white sands of Florida’s beaches, trekking in Yosemite National Park or whale watching off the shores of Cape Cod in New England, there’s an abundance of awesome holidays to be had in North America during the summer.

And thankfully Vacations to America has them all covered with its extensive offering of fly-drive, escorted and tailor-made tours across all 50 USA states. The trips include a unique range of handpicked accommodation that it is often not possible to book direct from the UK and cover both classic and lesser-known routes and activities.

Here’s a selection of summer holidays in 2012 available with the specialist tour operator:

Celebrate the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll in Memphis, Tennessee

This summer marks the 35th anniversary of Elvis Presley’s death (16 August 2012). Celebrate the iconic superstar’s life by visiting the birthplace of rock ‘n’ roll – Memphis, Tennessee. Take a fascinating tour of Elvis’s famous mansion – Graceland – as well as Sun Studio where he recorded his first song. Memphis oozes cool; visitors love its funky shops, back-alley BBQ joints and the buzzing music scene on Beale Street. And where better to stay than the fashionable boutique Heartbreak Hotel, set in the grounds of Graceland? A week’s B&B and return flights (London or Manchester) costs from £1,449 pp (two sharing).

Blissful beaches in Sarasota, Florida

Discover some of Florida’s lesser-known, completely unspoilt beaches this summer. Avoid the tourist-heavy Clearwater and head to Sarasota instead where you will find Siesta Key – voted the best beach in America 2011 by ‘Dr Beach’, the coastal expert Dr. Stephen P. Leatherman. Anna Maria Island is a must-see too; nestled in the Gulf of Mexico it by-passed all of the high rise development in the 1980s to offer an ‘old Florida’ charm, where grand villas line the breathtaking shoreline. A week’s stay at Bayfront Bliss and return flights to Tampa (most UK airports) costs from £1,629 pp (six sharing).

California dreaming: the Pacific, Redwoods and Yosemite

Experience an active outdoor holiday in California on an eight-day Majestic Calfornia Family Adventure escorted tour, including San Francisco where one of the highlights features a cruise under the Golden Gate Bridge, the Sierra Nevada Mountains where guests embark on a guided flashlight hike, breathtaking Yosemite National Park and also Monterey Bay, for a behind-the-scenes tour of its award-winning aquarium which borders the world’s largest underwater canyons and is home to more than 350,000 marine animals and plants. Seven nights’ accommodation, 15 meals and return flights (London) cost from £2,745 pp (two sharing).

Southern coastal exploration to mark Independence Day

Independence Day (4July) is one of the best times of year to visit the nation’s capital – Washington DC. The atmospheric celebrations include a morning parade, concerts on the National Mall and a spectacular fireworks display by the Washington Monument. Witness it as part of a 15-day Southern Coastal fly-drive tour, going on to explore the history and culture of the pristine coastal areas of Virginia and the Carolinas, including Colonial Williamsburg, Charleston, Savannah, Georgia’s coastal islands, Amelia Island and St Augustine. Arriving 3 July, 14 nights’ accommodation, return flights (London) and car hire including full driving directions, maps and guide books, cost from £1,975 pp.

Whale watching and the great outdoors in New England

From May to September, visitors to Cape Cod can set off on exhilarating whale watching trips from Provincetown or Hyannis. Experience one as part of a 14-night New England Country Inns fly-drive tour, journeying through Boston, Cape Cod, Vermont (including dreamy Route 100 through the Green Mountains), New Hampshire – gateway to the White Mountain National Forest, with 1,200 miles of hiking trails and 700 miles of cycle paths – and Maine. 14 nights’ accommodation, return flights (London) and car hire, including full driving directions, maps and guide books, cost from £1,765 pp.

For further information about Vacations to America, visit

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Art deco South Beach, Miami, Florida