Arrive New York
Depart London Heathrow - 10:25
Arrive New York JFK - 12:55
Journey time - 7hrs 35mins
Note: Flight times may vary. There are flights throughout the day to New York and domestic add-on services to suit all needs, please ask for details on other flights if required.
After taking a taxi (your approx fare will be $45 - this is not included in your prepaid holiday cost) to your hotel today, get ready for an adventure. New York City is home to America's famous landmarks — the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, Rockefeller Center with it's Top of the Rock Observation Deck, Central Park, Madison Avenue, the Miracle Mile of Museums and more. In order to maximise your time in the city, you may want to purchase a 3 Day New York Explorer Pass that provides discounts for 16 major New York attractions. The choices include a City Lights Evening Cruise, a Hop-On Hop-off Double Decker Downtown Bus Tour, an NBC studio tour, as well as other major attractions.
Overnight - New York
Explore New York
Today art lovers can risk sensory overload at the Metropolitan Museum of Art with 2 million works of art from around the world and the Museum of Modern Art, dedicated exclusively to contemporary art. History buffs should be sure to tour the American Museum of Natural History where there is always something new to see. The Ellis Island Immigration Museum holds another fascinating story. Travelers who have visited New York before can get off the beaten path. We can fill your Personal Travel Portfolio with wonderful, but little known attractions like the Cloisters, the medieval collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and some wonderful gardens. In fact, there are enough great gardens to spend your entire visit in New York outdoors.
Overnight - New York
Explore New York
Beyond the top attractions, the city itself is something to behold. Take the free Staten Island ferry for a stunning view of Manhattan alternatively take a trip out to Woodbury Common Outlet Mall for all of your designer bargains. And don't forget about Broadway and Lincoln Center for evening entertainment.
Overnight - New York
New York to Boston - by train (215 miles)
This morning take a short taxi ride (taxi not included in prepaid cost) from your midtown hotel to New York Penn Station where we have seats booked for you with Amtrak Rail to take you from the heart of Manhattan to the historic city of Boston. Sit back and relax as you are whisked north to the starting point of your New England adventure.
In a city filled with many interesting things to see and do, the Freedom Trail is the highlight of Boston for visitors. The 2.5 mile red brick walking trail leads you to 16 nationally significant historic sites, every one an authentic American treasure. Preserved and dedicated by the citizens of Boston in 1958, when the wrecking ball threatened several important places, the Freedom Trail today is a unique collection of museums, churches, meeting houses, burying grounds, parks, a ship, and historic markers that tell the story of the American Revolution.
You can take a self-guided tour or one of the many tours available through the National Park Service. Tours begin every half hour from the park visitor center at 15 State Street opposite the Old State House. If you prefer to ride, you can take a trolley tour, which is an unofficial guided tour, but does include many of the most important sites along the Trail including Old Ironsides, the Paul Revere House and the Old North Church. Plan to stop and eat at Faneuil Hall, once the primary meeting place for America's revolutionaries. It is now a bustling market of restaurants and shops.
Overnight - Boston
If you were able to experience a portion of the Freedom Trail yesterday, you can complete that journey today and delve into the myriad of other possibilities for exploring. There are always a variety of exhibits at the Boston Museum of Science. Cheers, of the famous television show of the same name, is located on Beacon Hill. The Sam Adams Brewery is a recent addition, founded in 1984. The Boston Museum of Arts, founded in 1876, has an outstanding, world-renowned collection that includes some 450,000 items. The New England Aquarium offers special whale watching trips until October. There's also the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, Newberry Street, with some of the best antiquing in America, and Cambridge, MA, home of Harvard University, right across the river.
Overnight - Boston
Boston to Kennebunkport, ME (via Salem, MA) - 85 miles
A scenic drive on the Essex National Heritage Area Scenic Byways takes you north through Salem, site of the famous witch trials in 1694, Marblehead, Ipswich, and Newburyport. From there, you'll be traveling the Coastal Byway to Hampton Beach and Portsmouth on your way to Kennebunkport. The Kennebunks are very old coastal towns, settled in 1620. Maine remained a part of the Colony of Massachusetts and Kennebunk did not become a city until 1820. If you're up for a short walk at this point, the Kennebunk National Register Historic District Village walk begins at the Brick Store Museum and continues on Main Street. If there's time, the Kennebunkport History Center is located at 125 North Street. Five buildings, including a shipwright's office, comprise the history center campus and present a good perspective of seafaring life in the Massachusetts colony.
If you didn't get the chance for a little designer shopping in New York you may wish to call in to the The Kittery Premium Outlet Store to top up your suitcase with the latest designer gear at bargain prices.
Overnight - Kennebunkport
Kennebunkport to Bar Harbor - 200 miles
Today, you can spend the entire day meandering up the rugged and beautiful Maine Coast or take the inland route to arrive much faster. Bar Harbor is one of America's quintessential destinations, where the Maine coast and Acadia National Park are absolutely integral to the town. Since you will be here today and tomorrow, today may be a good day to drive the Mt. Desert Island portion of the Acadia National Scenic Byway.
The Maine coast was actually discovered by European explorer Giovanni da Verrazano. He named the region L'Acadia. French explorer Samuel Champlain christened the main island of Acadia National Park, known today as Mount Desert Island, l'Isles des Monts-deserts in 1604. The island was later settled by Massachusetts colonists branching out, with most engaged in farming, fishing, lumbering and shipbuilding in the 1820s. It was not until later that the Rockefellers, Morgans, Fords, Astors and Vanderbilts began summering in Bar Harbor. A public land trust was created in 1901 to save the island and area from increasing development.
Overnight - Bar Harbor
Acadia National Park
There are three parts to Acadia National Park: Mount Desert Island, the Schoodic Peninsula and Isle au Haut. Even though buses run from place to place on the drive, you can do the scenic drives of both the Mount Desert and Schoodic portions yourself. There are three visitors center and an additional museum on Little Cranberry Island which is only reached by a ferry from Northeast Harbor or Southwest Harbor.
Isle au Haut is only available by boat and it is not a car ferry. Once there, it is a working village. You can check into it and determine whether or not it will be worth the time it takes to get there and back, and whether there would be anything of interest for you to do there.
Perhaps you will also want to have a carriage ride on one of the cobblestone Carriage Roads that John D. Rockefeller built in the area, but are no longer accessible to automobiles.
Enjoy this beautiful park which is wonderful at any time of the year to visit. If the entrances to Acadia National Park and other roadways are crowded, take the Island Explorer bus to the various park destinations and local communities.
Overnight - Bar Harbor
Bar Harbor to Jackson, NH - 221 miles
After a very restful evening on the serene Maine coast, another series of scenic roads will take you to New Hampshire's White Mountains. It's everything you'd expect in quintessential New England. Cold, clear rushing streams reflect the deep lush greens of summer and the blazing colors that set the hillsides on fire in fall. Towering granite cliffs and soaring mountains hug both sides of the road as you make your way along age old winding, scenic routes, the woods that poet Robert Frost called, 'lovely, dark and deep.'
You can come here to escape all of mankind, which most of the residents do. Locals will assure you that you can have a vacation away from the 'citied' world in a place that has not changed much in centuries. Many of the charming villages still look as they did when writer Nathaniel Hawthorne and painter Thomas Cole lived here in the 18th century. And that's the way they like it, slow, easy and simple, leaving time to appreciate the astounding scenic beauty all around.
Overnight - Jackson
Jackson to Stowe, VT - 112 miles
Today we recommend an early start, so enjoy breakfast and then head for the hills… Mount Washington to be precise. Whilst in this spectacular area you must take time out to visit the grand & glorious ‘Mount Washington Hotel'. Wander through the recently restored public areas in and out where presidents, poets & celebrities have enjoyed over the years. Then it's back on the road, off along more beautiful scenic byways as you head to the Vermont Green Mountains. Nearly 70 years after the von Trapp family resettled from Austria, 'the hills are still alive with the sound of music!' On your way there, you'll enjoy the classic New England landscape and architecture - a mountain ridgeline, a winding river, hillside farms, covered bridges, and quaint villages bathed in bright sunshine and set up against mountains as old as time. And, of course, there's Ben and Jerry's ice cream factory. The countryside hasn't changed much here in the 230 years since the Green Mountain Boys declared Vermont an independent republic. A mountain pass in Vermont is called a 'notch' and mountains here have interesting names like Camels Hump and Crouching Lion. New England at its finest! Enjoy your drive.
Arriving into strikingly beautiful Stowe you'll soon discover why this is a village that travellers want to return to again and again. Known as a fabulous ski resort, Stowe is much more than that - with its picture postcard New England landscape, the Village of Stowe features many unique shops and a variety of dining venues. Located in the center of town your lodging for this evening is the focal point of historic Stowe Village.
Overnight - Stowe
Stowe to Manchester, VT - 119 miles
Leaving Stowe today, you'll be travelling south on scenic Vermont State Road 100. Since it's only 110 miles between Stowe and Manchester, there will likely be time to travel additional scenic Vermont roads today.
The scenic driving loop that takes you to South to Bennington and East to Brattleboro and back to Manchester again is only 113 miles long:
You'll find Bennington County, Vermont as quintessential New England as there is. There are two historic walking tours in Bennington. One includes the original structures remaining from settlement and the 'Old First Church' behind which poet Robert Frost is buried. Another driving tour takes you under five covered bridges and to the Vermont Covered Bridge Museum. Be sure not to miss the Apple Barn and Country Bake Shop, as well as Bennington Potters, world famous for their stoneware pottery.
Between Bennington and Brattleboro, take the Molly Stark Trail National Scenic Byway through the southern Green Mountains. It is named after the wife of New Hampshire General John Stark who was the victor in the 1777 Battle of Bennington. The road is the route that the General and his troops marched home after their triumph over the forces of King George III. Enjoy the three state overlook from the top of Hog Mountain. Brattleboro is a college town and completely different than Bennington. The downtown is filled with art galleries, craftspeople, artists, boutiques, shops and restaurants. From there it's a short drive back to you accommodations in Manchester.
Overnight - Manchester
Manchester to Newport, RI - 224 miles
As you travel south through The Berkshires today, you soon come upon Lenox, which was a prosperous farming and mill town until it was suddenly 'discovered' by the rich and famous in Boston and New York in the mid 1800s. Nathaniel Hawthorne was the first to arrive. He wrote the House of Seven Gables while living in a little red cottage just outside of town. Samuel Gray Ward, a Boston banker who would later finance the purchase of Alaska by the United States, built a summer home near Hawthorne's cottage. And the rest, as they say, 'is history.' By the late 1800s, Lenox and Stockbridge were booming with the summer homes of the country's elite. Shadowbrook, Anson Stokes 'summer cottage,' had 100 rooms.
Stockbridge, located right next to Lenox, is Norman Rockwell's America at its finest. The Red Lion Inn is the focal point of one of Rockwell's best known paintings. Stockbridge is also the home of the Norman Rockwell Museum and Chesterwood, the historic home of Daniel Chester French, who created the statue of Abraham Lincoln in the Lincoln Memorial as well as other well known works of public art.
And just when you thought there couldn't possibly be more scenic roads in New England, you'll experience US Route 20 across southern Massachusetts through Sturbridge and the Blackstone River Valley on your way to Newport, Rhode Island. Plan to stop at Old Sturbridge Village where you will come face-to-face with the past and the events that shaped life from the late 1700s to early 1800s in colonial Massachusetts. The Village, set out as a country town, illustrates the struggles and triumphs of everyday life.
The Blackstone River Valley in Rhode Island was the site of the first textile manufacturing in the United States, giving rise to the Industrial Revolution in the American northeast. Legend has it that Samuel Slater stole the original technology from England. His original mill on the Blackstone River has been painstakingly reconstructed. Now lined with pleasant, well manicured towns, it will be hard to imagine that this serene and lovely region once teemed with over 1,100 textile mills and thousands of residents who worked in them.
Make sure you visit at least one of the mansions built during the Gilded Age. The wonderful houses along the cliffs and Bellevue Avenue were the 'summer cottages' of the rich and famous from New York and Philadelphia who descended on Newport for a summer social season. Houses modeled after French castles and other royal residences were the site of lavish parties, dalliances and intrigue. When no longer occupied by their owners, a collection of the mansions were purchased by the Preservation Society of Newport and have been opened to the public. The Breakers and Rosecliff are the two best.
Overnight - Newport
Newport to Cape Cod - 60 miles
Cape Cod is larger than most people imagine. Your accommodations in Yarmouth Port for the next three nights place you right in the middle of the Cape, ready for action. The Upper Cape closest to the Massachusetts mainland is home to Sandwich and Falmouth, location of the famous Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Hyannis, of Kennedy fame, is located Mid-Cape. The narrow portion of land where it bends sharply north is considered the Lower Cape. The Outer Cape includes the Cape Cod National Seashore, forty miles of pristine sandy beach, marshes, ponds and uplands. Lighthouses, cultural landscapes and wild cranberry bogs offer a glimpse of Cape Cod's past. Stephen Leatherman, aka Dr. Beach, recently named Coast Guard Beach the 5th best beach in the US. Provincetown, at the very end of the Cape and long known as an art town, berths several whale watching fleets that patrol Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. Several guarantee a whale sighting at the right time of year.
Overnight - Yarmouth Port, Cape Cod
Today, you have one more full day to explore Cape Cod. You can take a ferry to Nantucket Island or to Martha's Vineyard. Nantucket is one of the most unique, historic and visually stunning places in the world. Originally a booming whaling port, the National Historic District of Nantucket has changed little since the 17th century, when many of the seaside cottages were built and old-fashioned whale oil lamps lit the streets. Martha's Vineyard, another coastal island, actually has six different towns that are as different as night and day. Once a thriving whaling port, the island is now home to writers, artists, architects and designers who come here to get away from the hustle and bustle of Boston. There are no chain restaurants, no shopping malls and no speed over 45 miles an hour on Martha's Vineyard. What a great way to end your journey through New England in complete relaxation!
Overnight - Yarmouth Port, Cape Cod
Today leave Cape Cod and drive back to Boston. This peninsula is a beloved vacation spot for visitors and natives alike. Maybre stop in Plymouth, a living panorama of Pilgrim and Colonial times and see the Mayflower II. Return your car at the airport before your departure flight.
Depart Boston - 21:30
Arrive London Heathrow - 0805*
Journey time - 6hr 35mins
Note: Flight times may vary
*denotes next day arrival