Southern Elegance

An Escorted Tour Holiday to The Deep South, USA


Welcome to Atlanta, cultural capital of the New South! On arrival at Atlanta Hartsfield–Jackson International Airport, your airport transfer service takes you to your tour hotel in the heart of lively Buckhead, Atlanta’s shopping and entertainment mecca. Freshen up in your lovely room, visit the soothing spa or relax in the inviting garden. At 6 p.m., gather at the hotel with your Tour Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception and light buffet and some warm Southern hospitality.

Hotel: InterContinental Buckhead Atlanta (WR)


Get acquainted with Georgia’s stately capital - “Standing Peachtree” to the local Native Americans - before setting out toward the gently rolling Appalachians, some of the oldest mountains on the planet. As you travel into Asheville and the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains, take a deep breath of fresh mountain air.

Then step back in time and into an era of refined elegance as you explore Biltmore Estate, a National Historic Landmark and America’s largest home, which was built for George W. Vanderbilt in 1895. Learn about the wealthy Vanderbilt family and their famous guests on your guided tour of the estate. Then wander at your leisure through the mansion’s museums and acres of beautiful gardens and grounds, designed by renowned landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted who also planned New York’s Central Park. 

Settle into your gracious inn, the only accommodation on Biltmore’s 8,000-acre estate and experience pampering and hospitality as the Vanderbilts once did. Tonight, delight in the regional cuisine and fresh, seasonal ingredients at a convivial dinner with your travelling companions.

Hotel: The Inn on Biltmore Estate (FB,D)


Leave behind the Blue Ridge Mountains of Asheville on your way to the southern Atlantic coast and genteel and sometimes eccentric Charleston, a city rich in history and Southern charm. Get a true feel for the seaport and its colourful past as you embark on a yacht cruise of the harbour. Glide past the palatial homes of Charleston’s famous Battery and key historic landmarks including the Cooper River Bridge, Waterfront Park, Patriots Point, Fort Sumter and Fort Moultrie where early American patriots once repulsed a British warship and saved Charleston from occupation. 

This evening, enjoy dinner at your hotel, a gracious mansion opened more than 150 years ago. After dinner, perhaps enjoy a cocktail in the lounge or on the patio - or simply explore the historic property, which has welcomed the likes of Robert E. Lee and Theodore Roosevelt as guests over the years.

Hotel: The Mills House Hotel (FB,D)


Your Local Guide will illuminate Charleston’s history and traditions as you stroll through the charming downtown area. Inhale the sweet fragrance of the city’s colourful gardens and flowerbedecked mansions; walk along the prestigious Battery and see Rainbow Row, with its antebellum mansions and the Old Exchange Building; tiptoe past the historic churches and graveyards. Continue your exploration on a relaxing horse-drawn carriage ride through 30 blocks of historic Charleston. Take some time to explore on your own - perhaps cool off with a mint julep or plantation punch at a downtown cafe.

This afternoon, delve into the true Southern plantation lifestyle at Magnolia Plantation. Visit the beautiful main house and explore the extensive grounds on a tram tour with a naturalist guide, looking out for alligators, turtles, egrets and herons. Then experience the reality behind the wealth when you visit the plantation’s special project - a collection of slave cabins carefully preserved and restored to document the full arc of African–American life at the plantation. (FB)


Travel through seaside Beaufort’s lovely historic district before venturing out to Georgia’s Golden Isles. Enjoy an orientation tour of idyllic little St. Simons Island, an exclusive island hideaway of white sand beaches, moss-draped oaks and golden marshlands. Continue your island hopping to Jekyll Island, the southern resort island made chic by America’s wealthiest and most influential families, including the Rockefellers and Vanderbilts. After a guided trolley tour of the island, settle into Afternoon Tea at the Jekyll Island Club with tables set with white linen and china and delicate pastries and sandwiches. 

Tonight, enjoy a Highlight Dinner with wine at your sprawling, Victorian resort. After dinner, why not stroll around the perfectly manicured hotel grounds or even take a late swim in the pool? Throughout the resort - ranked by Condé Nast as one of the 500 best in the entire world - you’ll be surrounded by understated elegance and warm hospitality.

Hotel: Jekyll Island Club Hotel (FB,HD)


Join a docent to learn the history and tales of the Jekyll Island Club, started in 1888 and once home to an exclusive club of nearly 100 of the world’s wealthiest families. Leaving the island, experience the more somber side of the South at Fort Pulaski National Monument. Over a two-day period during the Civil War, the Union army used rifled cannons to destroy the historic brick fort and compel a surrender by Confederates during this battle, which marked a turning point in military history as the power of new weapons outpaced the strength of traditional fortifications.

 On arrival into lovely, atmospheric Savannah, your Local Guide will take you on a tour of the well-preserved Historic District, the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, expansive Forsyth Park and gorgeous Monterey Square as well as famous sites featured in the best-selling novel Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.

Before dinner on your own this evening, gather with your travelling companions and Tour Director in the hotel’s Casimir’s Lounge for a Peach Bellini, a cocktail highlighting Georgia’s delectable state fruit. After dinner, revel in the warm southern night with its heady fragrances of jasmine and lilac. Relish the luxurious amenities - perhaps a visit to the spa? - at your spectacular mansion hotel, located next to Savannah’s most beautiful park.

Hotel: The Mansion on Forsyth Park (FB)


This morning enjoy a private tour of the Owens-Thomas House before the doors open to the public. A National Historic Landmark built in 1816, the elegant home is considered one of America’s finest examples of English Regency architecture, with family furnishings dating from the middle of the 16th century. Enjoy lunch on your own as you explore the waterfront shops and restaurants along River Street, followed by some time at leisure this afternoon to savour one of America’s great walking cities and to explore your own interests. 

Savannah is famous for its many squares, most adorned with luxuriant vegetation and tropical flowers - make sure to leave some time for simply soaking up the atmosphere, which is one of the most popular activities among locals. Tonight, you’ll be delighted with a private Highlight Dinner featuring Southern cuisine at Food Network star Paula Deen’s The Lady & Sons restaurant. After dinner, enjoy a glass of Madeira and learn why this famed fortified wine from Portugal was in such favour in this southern city that Madeira parties were the hottest ticket in town in the mid 19th century. (FB,HD)


Transfer back to Atlanta International Airport, or the tour hotel in Atlanta for guests extending their stay in Atlanta. (FB) Please do not schedule any flights before 5 p.m.

To Book This Holiday or find out more call our Travel Specialists on: 01902 798008 or contact us online.
Escorted Tour Southern Elegance in The Deep South, USA
Escorted Tour Southern Elegance in The Deep South, USA

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Additional accommodation

The Mills House Hotel

Charleston , South Carolina

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