Begin and end in Atlanta, this 13-day escorted tour offers an insight to culture, music and literature gems. Visit Atlanta, the ‘capital of the south’ and enjoy an adventure to remember on route to Nashville, the home of country.
Start by exploring Atlanta, a city packed with a wide selection of museums, music venues and an exciting theatre scene. Learn of one of the city’s most famous residents, Margaret Mitchell, publisher of Gone with the Wind! and if you’re a sports fan, seize the opportunity to catch an Atlanta Falcons, Hawks or Braves game.
Augusta and Charleston follow Atlanta, where you’ll hear stories of historical revolutions, earthquakes and hurricanes.
You’ll then move on to Savannah, known for manicured parks, horse-drawn carriages and antebellum architecture, before leaving the state of Georgia for Florida’s Capital, Tallahassee where rolling hills and moss oaks reminisce about scenes from Gone from the Wind.
Next arrive in New Orleans, a city marrying a mix of cultures including European characteristics with Caribbean enchantment.
Travellers will then be treated to Natchez, Mississippi, one of the most important European settlement sites. Continue on to Nashville, known as the most important city in country music via Memphis, home of ‘Sun Records.
The Exciting Parts
- Visit Jonesboro, the official Gone with the Wind town. Tour both the 'Road to Tara' Museum and Stately Oaks Plantation, the inspiration for the film.
- Comprehensive city tour of Atlanta
- Guided walking tour of historic Charleston
- Travel to Beaufort, the site of the filming of Forest Gump
- Trolley Tour of Savannah
- Tour a famous Antebellum home in Natchez
Altanta - Augusta - Charleston
Charleston - Savannah
Savannah - St Augustine - Tallahassee
Tallahassee - Pensacola - Mobile - New Orleans
New Orleans - Baton Rouge - Natchez
Natchez - Memphis
Nashville - Chattanooga - Atlanta
Day 1 Atlanta
Welcome to Atlanta, Georgia. During the Civil War, Atlanta was one of the most important Southern Cities as it provided war materials to the South. In 1864, General Sherman marched into Atlanta and burned the entire city. The city recovered from its losses and today is one of the most dynamic in the South, boasting a successful cultural and business hub. Transfer independently to your hotel where you will meet your ATI Tour Director.
Day 2 Atlanta
This morning, enjoy a city tour of Atlanta and learn about one of its most famous residents, Margaret Mitchell. In 1936, Mitchell published the book “Gone with the Wind”. It depicted the life of the daughter of a plantation owner and follows her life through the Civil War and Reconstruction. The story takes place in Atlanta and south of Atlanta in a small town named Jonesboro. This morning, you will visit the Road to Tara Museum and Stately Oaks Plantation which was the inspiration for Tara. You will have the opportunity to see memorabilia from the movie including costumes worn by the stars Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh. In the evening, enjoy a welcome reception which will give you the opportunity to meet your fellow travellers.
Day 3 Altanta - Augusta - Charleston
Leave Atlanta today and head west to Augusta. Augusta is the second oldest city in Georgia and is home to the prestigious Masters Golf tournament. In the afternoon, we will arrive in historic Charleston. You will have time to stroll down the cobblestone walkways and admire the fine architecture. In the evening, you may want to enjoy a romantic carriage ride or a sunset cruise (optional).
Day 4 Charleston
Enjoy a locally guided tour of Charleston and spend the afternoon at leisure. Take some time to walk the streets of Charleston’s meticulously preserved historic district, the best protected in the nation. Earthquakes, the Revolutionary War, the Civil War and hurricanes all took their toll on this beautiful city, yet it stands out as the historical gem of the South. You may wish to participate in an optional excursion to historic Boone Hall Plantation with its famous Avenue of Oaks. The property has appeared in numerous movies, among them “North and South”.
Day 5 Charleston - Savannah
Today, your road leads you further south to Savannah. En route stop on Port Royal Island and see Beaufort, South Carolina’s second oldest city. Its impressive Antebellum architecture has been the backdrop to a number of Hollywood movies, including “Forrest Gump”. After lunch continue on to Savannah, once the world’s largest cotton port. When cotton was king, Savannah controlled the prices of the world cotton market at her cotton exchange. Founder James Oglethorpe laid out the city squares. The Civil War destroyed a large portion of Georgia, but Savannah was spared. Numerous buildings around the tree-shaded squares are hundreds of years old; many of them are very well preserved and some remain open to the public. You will enjoy a historical guided tour (included) to learn more about the fascinating history of the Antebellum residences. The old cotton warehouses that line the river are now converted into shops and little restaurants, frequented by locals and tourist alike.
Day 6 Savannah - St Augustine - Tallahassee
Leave Savannah with its Antebellum homes and head on, driving south along the coast of Georgia. The cities you will pass are as rich with history as they are full of charm. In the afternoon you will enter the Sunshine State of Florida. Enjoy a stop in the charming city of St. Augustine, founded in 1565 by Spanish explorers. It is the oldest continuously occupied European established city & port within the continental U.S. In the evening arrive in Florida’s state Capital, Tallahassee. Tallahassee is one of the Nations smaller and quieter capitals with oak lined streets and soft hills surrounding the city.
Day 7 Tallahassee - Pensacola - Mobile - New Orleans
Travel along Florida’s panhandle to Pensacola, one of Florida’s most important vacation destinations. Pensacola was founded in 1599 and the area is known for its miles of Gulf shoreline, many of which are preserved as state and federal parks. Next stop is Mobile, Alabama. Founded in 1702, Mobile rapidly became one of the most important ports along the Gulf Coast. In the evening; arrive in New Orleans, a city immersed in Creole culture. The city today is a unique blend of Spanish, French, Caribbean, African and Anglo-Saxon influences. This is obvious in the food, architecture and of course, the music. Experience this melting pot aboard a Riverboat Dinner Cruise (optional) and enjoy the rhythms of a Dixieland jazz band.
Day 8 New Orleans
The day is yours to explore the charm and excitement of one of America’s most unique cities and for you to take in the French flavour and grandeur of New Orleans. May we suggest starting the day with a visit to a working plantation (optional), or explore the French Quarter with its trademark wrought iron balconies overlooking the narrow cobblestone streets.
Day 9 New Orleans - Baton Rouge - Natchez
This morning, we will travel to the capitol of Louisiana, Baton Rouge, and conduct a brief city tour. From there, we will travel via the historic Natchez Trace Parkway to Natchez. The parkway is a 444-mile drive through exceptional scenery and years of Native American and European history. Natchez is the oldest European settlement on the Mississippi River. Before the Civil War, wealthy plantation owners from Louisiana built magnificent Antebellum homes here because the area was considered safer from flooding. This afternoon, we will visit one of the homes and learn about the wealth of these 19th century millionaires.
Day 10 Natchez - Memphis
Leave Natchez and drive on to Memphis, home of ‘Sun Records’. As a large river port, it was one of the most important links in the cotton trade before the Civil War. Memphis is also known as the “home of the blues.” A brief city tour will take you to the city’s liveliest street, Beale Street, where the blues and other types of music are played nightly in almost a dozen clubs. Travel along historic Front Street, known as Cotton Row in the days when cotton traders and merchants conducted business here. Of course, no visit to Memphis would be complete without a visit to Graceland, the home of Elvis Presley (optional).
Day 11 Memphis - Nashville
Continue on to Nashville, known as the capital of country music. The city earned its title with the very first airing of the WSM Barn Dance radio program, the forerunner of the Grand Ole Opry. The newly renovated Ryman Auditorium in downtown Nashville, once home of the Grand Ole Opry, the studios near Music Row, and Opryland itself attest to Nashville’s reputation as the most important city in country music.
Day 12 Nashville - Chattanooga - Atlanta
Leaving Music City, we head to Chattanooga, home to the famous Choo Choo and which has received national recognition for the renaissance of its beautiful downtown and redevelopment of its riverfront. In the afternoon, our trails lead us back to Atlanta where our tour comes to an end.
Day 13 Atlanta
After check out from your hotel, your day is at leisure until transfer (included) to the airport for your departure flight home.