We Love —
- Experience the melting pot of cultures, musical marvels and fascinating history along the mighty Mississippi
- You will have the freedom of a road trip on this self-drive tour, with the luxury of some lovely hotels booked for you along the way
- Cover an amazing route, from St Louis to New Orleans
Here to Help —
Booking 35 days in advance and spending over £500 per person? No need to pay in full today! Just select the 30% deposit option on our payment page (terms & conditions apply)
For any additional information on this offer or assistance in making your reservation please call one of our dedicated team on 0844 8262098 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Opening hours are Monday to Friday 08:00 – 21:00 and Saturdays & Sundays from 09:00 – 17:30.
Our Offer —
The word Mississippi conjures up splendid images of a broad, majestic river, plied by grand old paddle steamers and accompanied by the melodic strains of “ol Man River”, the famous song from the hit musical Showboat.
The romance of river travel begins in St Louis, far from the perilous rapids that hindered navigation on the northern part of the river; nonetheless, riverboats on the southern stretch still require pilots where the river enters the shallows.
By the time you get to Memphis, lying south of the confluence of the Wolf River with the Mississippi, the river has truly entered the world of the old South. Even today, for many here time still only falls in two periods, pre-and post American Civil War. Most of the war was fought in the South, which suffered greatly as a result but fortunately some magnificent mansions set in spectacular grounds – with more than a whiff of Gone with the Wind still survive from the antebellum golden age.
Your Destination —
St Louis was founded in 1703 as a missionary base expanding as a French settlement until the Louisiana purchase of 1803. The town grew prosperous on the basis of its location as the gateway to the west – symbolized by the iconic 'Gateway Arch', a must-visit for any tourist.
The town's history and culture are strongly linked to the river and many musical legends who began their careers here including including Tina Turner and Miles Davies. A plethora of live music venues keep the music alive today.
Memphis is a city made for entertainment, so ramble around in the Beale Street Historic District and see what you find. Check out who's playing at the New Daisy, a charming old theatre that frequently hosts big names. The Hi Tone Café is a rowdy Overton Park spot with a strong and varied lineup of acts, recently voted the best place in town to see live music. Also in Memphis is the famous BB King's, and anywhere on Beale Street, also home to the Beale Street Music Festival.
Experience the birthplace of rock ‘n’ roll and discover first-hand how Elvis Presley became the most celebrated entertainer in the world. Graceland takes you on a one of a kind journey through Elvis’s humble beginnings and rise to superstardom, with up close and personal looks at the influence that forever changed our music.
The Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum’s exhibition about the birth of rock and soul music, created by the Smithsonian Institution, tells the story of musical pioneers who, for the love of music, overcame racial and socio-economic barriers to create the music that shook the entire world. The museum is the gateway to the history of the Memphis musical heritage and the cultural impact influencing society.
Take a guided tour of the most famous recording studio in the world, the legendary Sun Studio, where the blending of Blues and Country Music exploded in the big bang of Rock 'n' Roll heard around the world.
Stax Museum of American Soul Music is a 17,000-square-foot museum with more than 2,000 exhibits, artefacts and memorabilia celebrating the legacy of American soul music. Along with the legendary Stax Sound, the museum spotlights the music of Muscle Shoals, Hi and Atlantic Records.
The Lorraine Motel in Memphis, where Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in 1968, has been transformed into a world-class museum dedicated to the Civil Rights movement. It opened its doors in 1991, and in 2002 opened “Exploring the Legacy”, a 12,800-square-foot expansion that incorporates the Main Street Rooming House, where James Earl Ray fired the fatal shot. The museum is a powerful and poignant testimony to King and the men and women who shared his struggle.
Slave Haven Museum (or Burkle Estate as it is also known) is a white clapboard house built by Jacob Burkle in 1849. Rumour has is that this house on the Underground Railroad served as a way station for the runaway slaves. You can tour the house and visit the cellar where slaves used to wait to escape.
Visit the Delta Blues Museum located in Clarksdale, home of the famous Robert Johnson crossroads and the Delta region known as land of the Delta blues. Legendary Delta blues artists like John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters, Ike Turner, Son House, Sam Cooke, Jackie Brenston, Junior Parker and WC Handy were born and raised in or around Clarksdale and travelling musicians like Robert Johnson, Howlin’ Wolf and Charley Patton are also associated with the city.
Today, the Delta blues history is preserved for visitors at the Delta Blues Museum where the exhibitions and events tell the story of the blues in the states oldest music museum. The Delta Blues Museum Stage serves local festivals such as the Juke Joint Festival in April and the Sunflower River Blues Festival in August.
Anyone interested in the American Civil War would not want to miss the opportunity of visiting this small town. The northern states finally gained control of the Mississippi region at the battle of Vicksburg on 4 July 1863. This town was also the original birthplace of coca-cola as the first bottle was produced here in 1894.
At water level, the Mississippi River is awesome, but it looks even more impressive from the basket of a hot-air balloon. Ask anyone in The Great Mississippi River Balloon Race, which happens at Natchez each October. The balloons rise from the bluff in Natchez and hang over the mighty Mississippi like giant, multicoloured ornaments. Below, traffic flows from one side of the river to the other on twin cantilever bridges, and huge barges riding low with cargo seem dwarfed by the expanse of water around them.
Natchez is noted among America's historic cities for its wealth of historically significant antebellum architecture. You can tour the magnificent antebellum homes and opulent mansions that stand centre stage on the Natchez Historic City Tour. The guide will show you over 50 antebellum homes and churches on a 10-mile odyssey through this historic river city. Or for something a bit different why not enjoy the romance of Natchez at night. Take a horse-drawn carriage tour around beautiful antebellum homes and historical downtown Natchez.
Baton Rouge is Louisiana's Art Deco state capital. The city buzzes with the energy of youth while holding fast to its traditions in Southern lifestyle and historic sites. A revival is underway in the city centre where attractions range from a riverfront casino to the USS Kidd floating museum to the ultra-contemporary Shaw Centre for the Arts, which clusters an art museum, gallery spaces, theatres and restaurants in the heart of downtown.
A visit to Baton Rouge would not be complete without a side trip to the Atchafalaya Heritage Area in Louisiana. An American-Indian word, "Atchafalaya" means long river. Established in 2006, the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area stretches across 14 parishes in south-central Louisiana. It is among the most culturally rich and ecologically varied regions in the United States, home to the widely recognized Cajun culture as well as a diverse population of European, African, Caribbean and Native-American descent.
Architecture defines New Orleans. The famous French Quarter, with its graceful iron balconies, wooden shutters and hidden courtyards, is an icon among the country’s architectural landmarks, even as it remains a vibrant residential and commercial neighbourhood. The Quarter is famous for great live music and exquisite dining - and its proximity to one of America’s great rivers. Just steps away, the walkways of Woldenberg Riverfront Park afford great views of ships and barges plying the Mississippi River as they travel through the Port of New Orleans.
On the opposite side of the downtown area, the historic Garden District awaits. Visitors can walk or drive to see block after block of grand, plantation-style homes rich in the lacey ironwork and architectural detail that characterised 19th-century New Orleans.
Art lovers will find plenty to like in galleries from the French Quarter to the Magazine Street shopping corridor. The New Orleans Museum of Art stands in beautiful City Park. And in the trendy Warehouse District, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art presents one of the largest collections of Southern works in the country.
New Orleans’ charm stems from many sources, but most importantly, its cultural diversity. Since its beginnings, the city has embraced the heritage of others, from the French, Spanish, English and Irish, to African, Latin American and Caribbean people. The result is a depth of culture that marks everyday life. It’s what makes the food, music and character of New Orleans so distinctive: Think Oysters Bienville and Shrimp Creole; Bananas Foster and soft-shell crab po-boys; the Neville Brothers, Wynton Marsalis and Harry Connick Jr.; Bourbon Street, Tipitina’s and Mardi Gras.
Your Accommodation —
Stays at the below 4* hotels are included throughout.
St Louis - St. Louis Omni Majestic, Room Only (1 night)
Memphis - Crowne Plaza Memphis, Room Only (2 nights)
Clarksdale - Hampton Inn, Room Only (1 night)
Vicksburg - Portofino Hotel, Room Only ( 1 night)
Natchez - Dunleith Historic Inn, Bed & Breakfast (1 night)
Baton Rouge - Hampton Inn, Bed & Breakfast (1 night)
Vacherie - Oak Valley Plantation, Room Only (1 night)
New Orleans - Harrah's New Orleans, Room Only (2 nights)
Your Journey —
Outbound: London Heathrow to St Louis (via JFK)
0845 / 1245 - 1455 /1702
Inbound: New Orleans Airport to London Heathrow (via Atlanta)
1630 / 1902 - 2140 / 1105
All flight times are local
Car Hire: 8 day car hire is included. This will be picked up in St Louis on day 2 and dropped off in New Orleans. Please note there will be a drop off charge of approx. $399 per car.
Intermediate car: 2 or 4 doors, Automatic Transmission, Air Conditioning
Please note: flight details are given as a guide only and may change. We will however notify you in advance if flights are more than 2 hours outside the time range given. Flights are non-changeable and non-refundable at time of booking.