Visions of Virginia
Day 1 UK - Washington DC
Titan’s VIP door-to-door travel service collects you from home for your flight to Washington DC. On arrival our coach will transfer you to the Washington Marriott Georgetown (3.5-star).
Day 2 Washington DC
This morning our included city tour introduces us to the famous monuments of the US capital, most of them situated within and around the grand setting of the National Mall, from the United States Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial and including the buildings of the Smithsonian Institute, a complex of marvellous museums offering free admission. The White House will also be on the itinerary. The rest of the day is free, with an optional ‘Washington Illuminations Tour’ this evening.
Day 3 Washington DC
Today you are free to explore Washington at your own pace, perhaps visiting the fascinating National Museum of Natural History, the National Air and Space Museum or the National Art Gallery, which displays works by Rembrandt, Cézanne, Monet, Picasso and many more. Alternatively, you may choose to join our optional excursion to Mount Vernon, George Washington’s plantation home.
Day 4 Washington DC - Charlottesville
Today we travel to the Blue Ridge Parkway, ascending well over 3,000 feet to the dominating views of the Skyline Drive through the Shenandoah National Park, stopping at the Skyland Resort with time for lunch. We continue, on a winding route that takes us into the fertile vine-growing areas of Virginia and to the Barboursville Vineyards, where we enjoy a tasting of the local vintage. From here we drive on to Charlottesville and the Hilton Garden Inn (3-star).
Day 5 Charlottesville - Roanoke
This morning we visit one of the loveliest buildings in America, Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, set in attractive gardens atop Little Mountain. Jefferson, who was the nation’s third president, was a true Renaissance Man, excelling in many areas of the arts and sciences and he designed this Palladian plantation house, now a National Historic Landmark and UNESCO World Heritage Site. This afternoon we visit Natural Bridge, an imposing natural arch carved out of limestone, rising to a height of 215 feet. We have arranged a tour of the underground caverns here with a trained guide. Our hotel for tonight is the Sheraton Roanoke (3-star) or Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center, Curio Collection by Hilton (4-star).
Day 6 Roanoke - Knoxville
We travel to Abingdon this morning, stopping to visit the historic Barter Theatre, which opened its doors during the height of the Depression in 1933, inviting patrons to pay for their tickets with home-grown vegetables if they didn’t have the money. A number of film stars were discovered performing at this theatre, including Gregory Peck, Patricia Neal and Ernest Borgnine. Afterwards, we cross the street to call into the Martha Washington Inn, built as a private home in 1832, which has hosted many distinguished guests over the years. We will enjoy morning tea or lunch and a short tour of the hotel. We make a short stop in Abingdon before continuing to Knoxville, arriving late this afternoon at our hotel for the next two nights, the Hilton Knoxville (3.5-star).
Day 7 Knoxville
You are free to explore the city of Knoxville at leisure today, perhaps visiting the central Market Square, with its cafés, shops and street performers or the McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture, whose exhibits range from ancient Egyptian artefacts and dinosaur bones to displays on the American Civil War. Alternatively, you may choose to join one of our optional tours.
Day 8 Knoxville - Asheville
We leave Knoxville this morning and enjoy a scenic drive through the spectacular scenery of the Great Smoky Mountains to the town of Cherokee, in the company of a local guide. We travel on to Asheville, first stopping at Biltmore Village, an attractive outdoor shopping mall, where there will be free time for lunch, before we visit Biltmore House, a vast French Renaissance-style mansion built by George Washington Vanderbilt II in 1895. It is the largest privately-owned house in the USA. Inside you’ll step into the American Gilded Age, passing through opulent rooms adorned with paintings, tapestries and furniture collected by the Vanderbilts. We continue to our hotel, the Hampton Inn Tunnel Road (3-star).
Day 9 Asheville - Winston-Salem
We start today at the Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center, which highlights the natural and cultural heritage in this beautiful National Park. Then, in the Folk Craft Center, you can watch highly skilled craftspeople work and talk about the traditional and contemporary crafts of the Southern Appalachians. We head towards the majestic Black Mountain and stop for lunch before we continue along twisting highways to Chimney Rock State Park, named after its most prominent feature, a 315ft-high granite monolith. We travel north to Winston-Salem and our hotel for the next two nights, the Marriott (3.5-star).
Day 10 Winston-Salem
We head to the visitors’ centre this morning, where we watch an introductory film about the city, then enjoy a brief tour of Winston-Salem. We visit Reynolda House, a century-old mansion which is now a museum housing an important collection of American paintings and decorative arts. We also take a tour of Historic Bethabara Park, where a Protestant Moravian settlement was founded in 1753. It is now an open-air museum, set in 183 acres of picturesque parkland.
Day 11 Winston-Salem - Williamsburg
On our journey towards Williamsburg we stop in the city of Durham, for a brief visit to the campus of Duke University, noted for its Gothic architecture. Later, after an opportunity to visit a Walmart, we head to Berkeley Plantation, site of the first official Thanksgiving in 1619, and a fine Georgian mansion. We arrive in historic Williamsburg this afternoon and check into our hotel, the DoubleTree by Hilton (3.5-star).
Day 12 Jamestown
This morning we travel to Jamestown, the site of the first permanent English settlement in North America, established in 1607 by around 100 members of the Virginia Company, including John Smith. Today you can see replicas of the three ships that brought the colonists to the New World and a reconstruction of the wattle-and-daub fort. We return to Williamsburg this afternoon for a self-guided tour of its well-preserved colonial centre.
Day 13 Williamsburg - Alexandria - Washington - In flight
We leave Williamsburg this morning on our way back to Washington, stopping in the city of Alexandria for lunch. Later this afternoon we arrive at Washington airport for your return flight to the UK.
Day 14 UK
Upon arrival your Titan vehicle will be waiting for the journey home.