Central Holidays

Program Highlights

Explore the areas of the Wild West on this tour that begins in Denver and heads north through Cowboy Country. See the rolling Black Hills of South Dakota where the Sioux Indians lived and overnight in Jackson Hole, once a fur trading post. Visit the famous Geysers of Yellowstone and awe at the natural wonders of Canyonlands and Arches National Parks.

Includes

  • Hotel accommodation for 13 nights
  • 14-day car rental
  • Hotel taxes and mandatory fees

Small Groups


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Popular departures in purple

Notes

A selection of different car categories and inclusions, hotels, room category, additional nights, transfers and optional tours are available. Program’s validity and/or some included features may vary.

USA Map  for The Wild West

Departures & Rates


Please click here to request a quotation for your preferred dates of travel, or contact your Travel Agent

Hotels

Denver

Doubletree Curtis Hotel in Denver, USA
Doubletree Curtis Hotel
1 Night / First Class

Situated in the heart of downtown Denver and steps away from the action of the...


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Cheyenne

Little America Hotel & Resort in Cheyenne, USA
Little America Hotel & Resort
1 Night / First Class

Located just 4.8 km from downtown Cheyenne, a children’s playground and an outdoor hot tub...


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Hot Springs

USA Stay Hotel & Suites in Hot Springs, USA
USA Stay Hotel & Suites
1 Night / First Class

This Hot Springs hotel is located less than one kilometer from The Mammoth Site, an...


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Rapid City

Alex Johnson Rapid City by Hilton in Rapid City, USA
Alex Johnson Rapid City by Hilton
2 Nights / First Class

Located in central Rapid City, this historic hotel is just 30 minutes’ drive from Mount...


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Billings

Red Lion Hotel Billings in Billings, USA
Red Lion Hotel Billings
1 Night / First Class

Among shops and eateries along Interstate 90, this low-key hotel is 4 miles from ZooMontana...


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Cody

Comfort Inn Cody East Yellowstone in Cody, USA
Comfort Inn Cody East Yellowstone
1 Night / First Class

The Comfort Inn at Buffalo Bill Village Resort is ideally located downtown, just two miles...


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West Yellowstone

Gray Wolf Inn & Suites in West Yellowstone, USA
Gray Wolf Inn & Suites
1 Night / First Class

Conveniently located adjacent to the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center, this Montana hotel features an...


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Jackson Hole

Snow king Resort Jackson Hole in Jackson Hole, USA
Snow king Resort Jackson Hole
1 Night / First Class

This ski-in/ski-out resort is surrounded by the Bridger Teton National Forest and is 1.3 km...


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Salt Lake City

Little America Hotel in Salt Lake City, USA
Little America Hotel
1 Night / First Class

This Salt Lake City hotel is 5 minutes' drive from Temple Square. The hotel offers...


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Moab

Moab Downtown in Moab, USA
Moab Downtown
2 Nights / First Class

Hotel Moab Downtown is located in the heart of Moab, with views of La Sal...


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Arrive at Denver International Airport and proceed to your hotel. Denver has the urban charms of an industrious city, combined with all of the mystery and romance of the Old West. Located at just over five thousand feet above sea level, the “Mile High City” was one of the first settlements to not be centrally located to a navigable body of water or a functioning railway. A speck of gold was discovered here and led many eager fortune seekers to make camp. Although no major gold discovery was ever had, William H. Larimer arrived in 1859 and laid out a plan for the city. Today, Denver is a thriving center of commerce and finance with a lingering twinkle of its rugged beginnings. Walking in the Downtown area is ideal. It is bursting with greenery in its parks, pedestrian areas and tree-lined boulevards. Shops, restaurants and nightspots are all around. Top attractions like the US Mint, modeled on the Palazzo Riccardi in Florence, Denver Art Museum, and the Colorado History Museum are also located in this area.

This morning, depart Denver and begin driving toward Rocky Mountain National Park. Here the Rocky Mountains keep a watchful eye on the dramatic landscape below. There are forests of pine and fir and fields of wildflowers which make for spectacular vistas. Rocky Mountain National Park is unique because of its diverse terrain caused in large part by the extremes of elevation that exist within it. A prime wildlife-viewing area, the park is home to elk, mule deer, beavers, coyotes, river otters, moose, bighorn sheep, and an abundance of songbirds. Trail Ridge Road, which cuts west through the middle of the park, is rated among the most scenic highways in America. It was designated an All-American Road in 1996, one of the first six in the nation. Climbing to 12,187 feet near Fall River Pass, Trail Ridge Road is the highest continuous paved highway in the United States. Exhibits at the Alpine Visitor Center at Fall River Pass, 11,800 feet above sea level, explain life on the alpine tundra. Continue on to Cheyenne for an overnight stay.

Depart Cheyenne this morning and drive toward Hot Springs, South Dakota, famous for its healing warm-water springs. Stroll along the Freedom Trail that runs along the banks of the Fall River where you can walk under the waterfall. Experience the unique shops, galleries, coffee houses, book stores and restaurants that occupy the century-old sandstone buildings that dot the landscape along the streets. Explore the 1890 railroad depot that now serves as Visitor Information Center. Start at the world-famous Mammoth Site where you can see history being uncovered right before your eyes. It is the only display of mammoth fossils in the US. In 1974, building of a housing project came to an abrupt halt when a tractor driver unearthed a seven-foot tusk. Paleontologists soon declared that the workers had discovered the 26,000-year-old grave of Columbian and Woolly mammoths, 52 have been found to date. Inside the dome, fascinating tours explain how these 10-ton mammoths, along with camels, bears and rodents, were trapped in a steep-sided sinkhole and were gradually covered by sediment. At the Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary, you can see wild mustangs in their natural habitat with their heads held proudly high and hear their pounding hoof beats as they freely gallop over the open range.

Today, drive toward Rapid City via Custer State Park to the four figures carved in stone at Mount Rushmore. Custer State Park in the Black Hills encompasses 71,000 acres of spectacular terrain and an abundance of wildlife. A herd of 1,300 bison roams freely throughout the park, often stopping traffic along the 18-mile Wildlife Loop Road. Besides bison, the park is home to wildlife such as pronghorn antelope, mountain goats, bighorn sheep, deer, elk, wild turkeys, and a band of friendly burros. Next, head upon Mount Rushmore. The four figures represent the first 150 years of American History. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt are captured in stone as the visionaries who individually contributed to the foundation of the United States. In addition to the carved granite faces, here you will find an amphitheater, museum/theater complex, Visitor Orientation Center, Presidential Trail, gift shop, bookstore, and dining facilities. To complete your Rushmore experience, view the evening lighting ceremony. You might also consider a visit to the Crazy Horse Memorial, home of the world’s largest mountain sculpture in progress. It tells the story in granite of the great and patriotic Native American hero, Crazy Horse, who died in 1877. The Memorial’s visitor complex includes the 40,000 square foot Welcome Center and theaters, the Indian Museum of North America, the Native American Educational & Cultural Center, the sculptor’s log home studio and workshop, indoor and outdoor galleries, museum gift shop, restaurant and snack bar areas and expansive viewing veranda. Enjoy an overnight stay in Rapid City.

Depart Rapid City this morning for a round trip that will take you through the Badlands National Park and the neighboring city of Wall for a visit to the Wounded Knee Museum. Millions of years of wind, water and erosion have created the chiseled spires, deep canyons and jagged buttes of Badlands National Park. Covering 244,000 acres, Badlands National Park is one of the largest protected mixed-grass prairies in the United States. The park is home to many species of wildlife including bighorn sheep, bison, the swift fox and the endangered black-footed ferret. Antelope and deer are commonly seen roaming near roadways and picnic areas. Take the first hour to watch the Park’s informational video and tour the exhibit at the Visitor Center; then, drive the 240 Loop Road making stops as needed for picture taking. Depart the Badlands via I-90 to the historic town of Wall for a visit to the Wounded Knee Museum. Have lunch at Wollies, a local favorite on the way in. At the Wounded Knee Museum exhibits and photographs provide a vivid picture of what really happened at the famous battle of Wounded Knee. This narrative museum offers an authentic recount of the story behind the legendary massacre. Allow at least 2 hours to enjoy this experience before returning to Rapid City.

From Rapid City, continue on to Devil’s Tower National Monument. The nearly vertical monolith known as Devils Tower rises 1,267 feet above the Belle Fourche River. Known by several northern plains tribes as Bears Lodge, it is a sacred site of worship for many American Indians. Proceed into Montana. Here in “Big Sky Country”, will visit the site of the most famous battle of the Old West at the Little Bighorn Battlefield. Here, Lieutenant Colonel Custer made his last stand against an overwhelming number of Sioux and Cheyenne Warriors in June of 1876. Continue on to Billings for an overnight stay. Take a scenic drive up the Beartooth Highway. The route was once dubbed “the world’s most beautiful highway” by Charles Kurault. Montana is a shopper’s paradise because it has no sales tax.

The tour takes you to Cody today. Visit the Buffalo Bill Historical Center. This unique place is actually five museums in one building offering an intimate look at the history of the west. The Buffalo Bill Museum examines both the personal and public lives of W.F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody, and seeks to interpret his story in the context of the history and myth of the American West. The Whitney Gallery of Western Art presents an outstanding collection of masterworks of the American West. Original paintings, sculptures and prints trace artistic interpretations of the West from the early 19th century to today. The Plains Indian Museum features one of the country’s largest and finest collections of Plains Indian art and artifacts. The Cody Firearms Museum contains the world’s most comprehensive assemblage of American arms, as well as European arms dating to the 16th century. Billing itself as “Rodeo Capital of the World,” Cody provides a unique opportunity to capture the excitement of a real rodeo in a dramatic western setting. Seasonally, the Cody Nite Rodeo is a fantastic way to become part of the west.

Today, depart Cody to explore Yellowstone National Park. Yellowstone was the first national park in the world, the example on which parks everywhere are modeled. One of the most famous park features is Old Faithful. This famous geyser got its name because of its punctuality and predictability. Eruptions at Old Faithful last anywhere from 1 to 5 minutes, and spray water and steam up to 184 ft vertically. Yellowstone also has freely roaming herds of buffalo. It also includes the nation’s largest wildlife preserve, an enormous lake, the Continental Divide, some 10,000 hydrothermal features, and over 1,000 miles of trails. Its diversity of attractions is a match for any location on the planet. Explore the interesting park locations and the hydrothermal features by strolling the boardwalks built over them. Yellowstone’s wildlife is as spectacular as the hydrothermal features. Because of the park’s remote location, and because of its large size, animals roam freely and are able to live in a natural way much as their kind has lived for centuries. Moose, elk and buffalo are among the most populous of inhabitants.

Drive away from Yellowstone and pass the Grand Teton Mountains on the way to Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The Teton Range is forty miles long and experiences and average snowfall of 191 inches. Grand Teton, at 13,770 feet is the tallest peak in this range. The views of the often snow-capped mountains will be spectacular. Stop at one of the many vistas or lakes for an excellent photograph. Continue on to Jackson Hole. Cowboys come to life in this town that was once a fur trading post. Saloons dot the corners and authentic artwork of the west can be found in the many galleries. Visit a local ranch for a delicious cookout and Wild West Show. Guided tours of the area are available by horseback or even hot air balloon!

Depart the Wild West and drive toward Salt Lake City and the famous Mormon Temple Square. The city was founded in 1847 by a group of Mormon pioneers led by their prophet, Brigham Young, who fled hostility and violence in the Midwest. Free tours are offered of Temple Square where you will see the Tabernacle and other historic Mormon sites. Salt Lake City is the capital and most inhabited city in Utah. The first transcontinental railroad brought the city much economic growth and lead to the nickname “Crossroads of the West”. Today, the mining industry is booming and the city hosted the 2002 Winter Olympics. You can visit the vast local copper mines or see Olympic Park. You might also want to visit the Great Salt Lake. A remnant of the massive ancient Lake Bonneville, the lake is now landlocked and its waters are salty. It is the largest lake between the Great Lakes and the Pacific Ocean, and is the largest saltwater lake in the Western Hemisphere. Enjoy an overnight stay in Salt Lake City.

Today depart Salt Lake City, and on the way stop at Dead Horse Point- and visit Arches National Park. Here you will encounter over 2,000 natural freestanding sandstone arches. The number varies from day to day, as old arches crumble and new ones form. The most famous of these is Delicate Arch. The best viewing of this impressive arch is done off the roadway and on one of the trails; it is well worth the hike to encounter it up close. At the Visitor Center, rangers offer guided walks and nature talks. Keep your eyes open for desert bighorn sheep. These famous residents tend to blend in with the landscape; a sighting is a special treat.

 

 

Today, drive to Canyonlands National Park. Here you can view thousands of feet down to the Colorado and Green Rivers, or thousands of feet up to red rock arches, spires and cliffs. Visit “The Needles” district of the park, regarded as the most colorful section. You can hike 1500 feet to Needle Point for breathtaking views. There are a variety of ways to see the park, including guided tours on ATV and bicycle. For the more adventurous, consider a white water rafting experience.

Depart Moab this morning and return to Denver today for your last overnight stay. Visit “The Buffalo Bill Museum” in Golden, Colorado. It houses exhibits that include memorabilia from Buffalo Bill’s life and Wild West shows, Indian artifacts, antique firearms and other Old West artifacts. The historical complex on Lookout Mountain includes the Museum and Buffalo Bill’s grave. Visit one of the multiple breweries of the Denver area; many of them offer tours and tastings. For dinner and shopping visit the 16th Street Pedestrian Mall. Built in 1982, this mall is a tree-lined, pedestrian promenade of red-and-gray granite that runs through the center of downtown. It is lined with outdoor cafes, renovated historic office buildings, sparkling glass-walled skyscrapers, shops, restaurants and department stores. Numerous fountains and plazas offer a variety of daily special events and entertainers.

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