2-Week Luxury Tour of United States National Parks including Yosemite and the Grand Canyon
Private planes will transport you from park to park and the best guides will take you off the beaten track, always a challenge in the parks. And for all of Aman’s junkies, we have two trips planned. (The photo above is of Lake Powell, created in 1963 by the controversial Glen Canyon flooding. It is visible from space and you will visit it by charter boat during your stay at the Amangiri.) When can you go? You should book now, but you’ll need a little patience: many hotels and park lodges are full until mid-August.
DAYS 1–3: BE AMAZED IN THE SIERRAS — AT YOSEMITE.
Or Yosemite National Park. Why This is the ground zero of conservationism – ground so powerfully shifting that it was first set aside by Congress solely for our enjoyment (originally as a state park). How? ‘Or’ What Land at Mariposa Airport and check in at the 1927 Ahwahnee Hotel, a masterpiece of “parkitecture”: stone, glass and dizzying woods, views of several Yosemite icons, starry night sky. In the morning, hike the Panorama Trail with your guide, hike from Glacier Point to Yosemite Valley, passing Half Dome and two of America’s tallest waterfalls (lunch is at the top of the Nevada). The next day is the famous giant sequoias of Mariposa Grove, then rafting on the Merced River. (Take a deep breath: there is nothing like the smell of the Sierras.)
DAYS 4-5: LIGHT ON MARS — IN THE GRAND CANYON.
Or Grand Canyon National Park and Lake Powell. Why For a bird’s eye view of 2 billion years of geological history. How? ‘Or’ What Fly from Yosemite to the Grand Canyon Airport (near the South Rim) for a day of hiking: bucket list views, sublime colored layers of ancient stone, fossils, traces of the rich and ancient cultures Native American Indians and Champagne toast in a private gazebo on the Colorado River, more than a mile below you. A short flight takes you past Page, Arizona, and a drive to Amangiri, Utah, all the luxuries taking place amidst a Mars-like landscape. The next morning, visit prime locations along the 2,000 miles of Lake Powell shoreline, secluded bays and water caves, all via a private chartered boat. Swimming, tubing, wakeboarding, you name it. (Followed by another night – yeah! – at the Amangiri.)
DAYS 6-7: PLAY HIGH DESERT SOLITAIRE — IN THE LANDS AND ARCHES OF THE CANYON.
Or Canyonlands and Arches National Parks. Why For the thousands of sandstone arches, spiers and eroded monoliths, our planet’s own surrealist sculpture park. How? ‘Or’ What First, fly from Page to Moab, Utah for a half-day float on the Colorado River, more accessible on this stretch than in the Grand Canyon. Tonight and tomorrow you will sleep at the rustic Sorrel River Ranch Resort and Spa, set on green pastures surrounded by dramatic cliffs. Set off in the morning for an 4X4 expedition (with hike) in the Arches, a high desert plateau dotted with salmon-colored creations. Your guide can take you off-road here. It’s bumpy, but the reward is utter solitude, silence, and the setting sun that makes the rocks redden.
DAYS 8-9: MAKING FOREIGNERS JEALOUS — TO JACKSON AND GRAND TETON.
Or Jackson and Grand Teton National Park. Why They are so breathtaking that a photo of them by Ansel Adams was sent to space aboard American Voyagers I and II. How? ‘Or’ What Fly from Moab to Jackson, Wyoming, check in to the Amangani, then embark on an extraordinary scenic float down the Snake River, past herds of elk and moose as eagles and ospreys hunt for their dinner. Yours will be served at a private riverside camp at sunset. You’ll depart early the next day for Grand Teton Park, America’s most instagrammable mountain range and a feast of wild animals: grizzly bears and black bears, bison, bighorn sheep, coyotes, bald eagles and bald eagles. white.
DAYS 10–11: DANCE WITH WOLVES — IN YELLOW STONE.
Or Yellowstone National Park. Why America’s premier national park is both its Serengeti, famous for its megafauna, and Iceland, with thousands of geothermal features, the most in the world. How? ‘Or’ What A scenic two-hour drive will take you from the Amangani to Wyoming’s Lake Yellowstone hotel, ideally located in the heart of this spectacular wilderness of wolf packs and bison herds. You’ll get as far as you can with your guide on the first day, and the next will be entirely in the backcountry: a horseback ride to (and from) fly fishing on a secluded lake or stream. Later, a plane will take you to Kalispell, MT, the gateway to Glacier National Park.
DAY 12: EXPLORE THE AMERICAN ALPS IN THE GLACIER.
Or Glacier National Park. WHY For its peaks and valleys carved by glaciers, its virgin forests, its 750 lakes and its 700 miles of hiking trails. How? ‘Or’ What After a night at the Lodge in Whitefish Lake, embark on an action-packed guided day as extreme or as easy as you want, with stops at lookouts, cabins, and historic sites (Native Americans arrived here ago). approximately 10,000 years). After? A private champagne cruise on Whitefish Lake.
DAYS 13-14: CUT IT ALL: IN A WEST STATION RANCH.
Or At a ranch of your choice: Paws Up, the Ranch at Rock Creek or Triple Creek Ranch, all easily accessible. Why To pamper you in first class before your flight home.
HOW TO BOOK:
This itinerary was developed with travel consultant Melissa Ladvala, specialist in tailor-made trips to the national parks of the American West at Mountain Travel Sobek. She knows the most spectacular driving routes, the best accommodation options and the most knowledgeable guides, and will adjust activities based on capacity levels. Book this itinerary as is or work with Ladvala to customize it to suit your interests, time and budget. Contact Ladvala at [email protected]
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