Every week, our Holiday Hero Neil Simpson takes an in-depth look at a brilliant holiday topic, doing all the legwork so you don’t have to. This week: Fly-drive trips to America.
It’s been around for 100 years, but the iconic American road trip has lost none of its appeal for those looking to inject adventure into their travels.
In fact, according to a growing number of holiday companies, fly-drives are topping the charts for new, long-haul bookings.
Iconic: The American road trip will appeal to those looking to inject adventure into their travels
Kuoni is the latest to tap into the demand, launching a website dedicated to North America. ‘We’re creating a collection of itineraries focusing on California, Florida, Las Vegas and the places we know travellers love to explore,’ says Kuoni chief executive Derek Jones.
Self-drive holidays along the Californian coast, through national parks and across the border into Canada’s Rocky Mountains are expected to be popular as the website, breeze.kuoni.co.uk, goes live.
The costs of a North American road trip package (with flights, car rental and accommodation) are likely to be higher than they were a few years ago – car rental prices have soared post-pandemic.
The Highlights Of The Florida Keys holiday from Inspiring Travel includes direct flights to Miami, where you can tour South Beach (pictured)
Stop off at Ernest Hemingway’s Florida home (pictured) on Inspiring Travel’s tour of the state
However, there are still good deals on offer and upgrades to convertible cars also make road trips more special. Sunny Florida is a perfect self-drive state and a great way to see it is on the ‘Highlights Of The Florida Keys holiday from Inspiring Travel. It includes direct flights to Miami, where you can tour South Beach before collecting the keys to your rental car. Head south to Key Largo, one of the world’s best dive spots and swim alongside turtles and shipwrecks.
Then cross 42 bridges and follow the modern wonder of the 113-mile Overseas Highway for a few nights in Key West, the southernmost point of the continental United States. Ernest Hemingway’s house, amazing sunsets and the rest of the quirky town await. Then drive north to stay amid the six sandy keys of laid-back Islamorada before returning to Miami.
Daily drives rarely take more than a few leisurely hours on an eight-night, luxury self-drive tour from £3,499pp including flights (inspiringtravelcompany.co.uk).
Enjoy two nights in Las Vegas (pictured) before getting behind the wheel on American Sky’s 15-night Route 66 self-drive holiday
Stop and admire the cinematic sandstone towers of Monument Valley (pictured) on American Sky’s tour
American Sky tour-goers can look forward to seeing the rich, red rocks of Bryce Canyon, pictured
The American West was made for road trips including the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley And Mighty Five Of Utah from American Sky. Enjoy two nights in Las Vegas before getting behind the wheel and driving to the Grand Canyon, then the cinematic, sandstone towers of Monument Valley.
Take it down a gear touring the five lesser-known national parks of Utah, including the rich, red rocks of Bryce Canyon. Eat at cowboy-style, roadside diners and stay in retro motels along the way. A typical ten-night trip costs from £1,599pp, including flights.
Or let the company arrange flights and a classic Route 66 self-drive holiday. A 15-night trip from Chicago to Los Angeles is from £1,959pp (americansky.co.uk).
Retro stop: Eat at cowboy-style, roadside diners and stay in motels along the way on American Sky’s Route 66 tour. Pictured is The Blue Swallow Motel in New Mexico, which features on the route
Dial-a-Flight’s Nation’s Capital holiday starts in Philadelphia, pictured, where Thomas Jefferson drafted the Declaration Of Independence
Dial-a-Flight’s itinerary makes time for canoeing on the Delaware River. Pictured is the river as it bends near Port Jervis, New York
On the East Coast, American history and a series of stunning landscapes combine on the route of Dial-a-Flight’s Nation’s Capital self-drive holiday.
The suggested itinerary starts in Philadelphia, where Thomas Jefferson drafted the Declaration Of Independence, and ends with his memorial in Washington DC. Between the two, your itinerary makes time for canoeing on the Delaware River, buggy rides in Amish country and boat trips across Chesapeake Bay with dolphins in your wake.
Take the tour in early autumn and the route is designed to showcase spectacular autumn colours. A 12-night trip costs from £1,465pp, including flights (dialaflight.com).