Southern Grace - Insight Vacations

Southern Grace (Luxury Gold - Summer 2017)

Duration: 9 days Visiting: United States

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  • Itinerary
  • Highlights
  • Accommodation
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Nashville and Memphis, two legendary cradles of modern music, offer exceptional opportunities to immerse yourself in their heritage, from reserved seats at the world-famous Grand Ole Opry to the Jungle room at Graceland. Your unforgettable journey culminates in the multicultural melting pot of New Orleans, renowned for its unparalleled cuisine. Explore Louisiana's distinctive culinary heritage, the history and ingredients of Creole cuisine at a New Orleans cookery class. Meet Elvis' close friend for a tour of Graceland before sitting down to a private dinner on the Grounds. In Natchez stay at Monmouth Inn. An early 19th-century antebellum mansion set in 26 acres of manicured gardens and a National Historic Landmark. Like 'sweet magnolia perfume, floating on the breeze', this laid back journey reflects the easy-going attitudes of the southern Blues and Jazz musicians.

  1. Day 1

    Welcome to Nashville

    Upon arrival at Nashville International Airport, you will be met and taken to your luxury hotel. Relax and settle in or start your exploration of the world's country music capital. At 18:00, join your Travelling Concierge for a Welcome Reception with drinks and a light meal.

  2. Day 2

    Enjoy Nashville’s Musical History

    Enjoy a tour of historic Studio B, work with a professional sound engineer in a 30-minute, choir-style recording session. Take home your own copy of the recording as a one-of-a-kind souvenir. How many people can say they recorded a song in the same studio Elvis created so many of his hits? Then visit the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, full of memorabilia from stars such as Hank Williams, Loretta Lynn and Garth Brooks. Your Local Expert, a songwriter and singer, will tell you the stories behind the biggest hits sung by well-known country music starts. No trip to Nashville would be complete without visiting the Grand Ole Opry. Attend a live taping of America's longest-running live radio program.

  3. Day 3 - Relaxed Start

    Memphis and the Birthplace of the Blues

    (Relaxed Start) Travel from the home of country music to the birthplace of blues and rock 'n' roll. Your day is at leisure to explore museums, shops or try some Memphis barbecue.

  4. Day 4 - Relaxed Start

    Graceland, Home of 'The King'

    (Relaxed Start) Spend your morning at leisure. Then travel to Sun Studios, where artists like Jerry Lee Lewis and Johnny Cash recorded revolutionary albums. The evening is devoted to Graceland, as much an object of pilgrimage, as a museum dedicated to the late, great, Elvis Presley. From the flowers and painted signs outside the gates, to the tear-streaked cheeks of fans inside, see the effect that Elvis and his music had on popular American culture. Spend your evening with George Klein, Elvis' close friend before enjoying a private Highlight Dinner on Graceland's grounds.

  5. Day 5

    Mississippi Mystique in Natchez

    Continue to Natchez, founded by the French in 1716 when it became home to a flowering colonial culture. Check in to your charming, luxury country mansion hotel. Whet your palate before dinner during a mixology class to learn the 'science' of mixing a signature drink of the South, the Mint Julep. Then savour a delectable four-course Highlight Dinner in the stunning main house.

  6. Day 6

    Frogmore, Houmas House and New Orleans

    Stop at Frogmore Plantation and journey back to a time when cotton was king. With your costumed hosts, tour a reconstructed 19th century plantation and compare it to the modern day operation that produces more than 900 bales of cotton each day. Get a glimpse into the sweet side of the South with a visit to Houmas House Plantation. Once the largest producer of sugar in the country, the mansion was often referred to as 'The Sugar Palace' during its antebellum heyday. In the evening, visit the New Orleans School of Cooking. Discover the flair of Creole cuisine during a lively cooking demonstration and enjoy the culinary creations with a special Highlight Dinner.

  7. Day 7

    New Orleans Sightseeing

    Join a Local Expert for an atmospheric tour of the city. Wind your way through one of the above-ground final resting place of pirates, politicians and voodoo queens. Explore the French Quarter, Louis Armstrong Park and Jackson Square you will see the city's colonial heritage and cultured history.

  8. Day 8 - Relaxed Start

    Exploring New Orleans, the Big Easy

    (Relaxed Start) Start the day up-close and personal with the rural side of the Cresent City, as you board a boat for a tour to meet the resident alligators and other flora and fauna. Enjoy some free time before gathering with your new friends and toasting to lifelong memories during a Celebration Dinner at the famous New Orleans restaurant Arnaud's.

  9. Day 9

    Depart New Orleans

    Bid 'Au Revoir' to the Big Easy in the morning. A complimentary transfer is provided to New Orleans International Airport.

Highlights

 

EXCLUSIVE INSIGHTS

  • Nashville: Join the ranks of superstar musicians like Elvis Presley, Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson and record a song at legendary Studio B, take home the recording as a truly unique souvenir.
  • Nashville: Visit the Country Music Hall of Fame and get a behind-the-scenes look at the songwriting process.
  • Nashville: Attend a live taping of the Grand Ole Opry, America's longest-running live radio program.
  • Memphis: Visit Sun Studios, where famous music icons like Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis and Johnny Cash recorded revolutionary albums.
  • Natchez: At Frogmore Plantation, contrast early 19th century cotton plantation life with the modern processes of today.
  • New Orleans: Join a Local Expert through the French Quarter, Louis Armstrong Park and Jackson Square.
  • New Orleans: Cruise through beautiful marshlands and swamps in search of alligators, turtles, snakes and herons.

ADDITIONAL INCLUDED HIGHLIGHTS

  • New Orleans: Join a Local Guide to tour one of the city's mysterious above ground cemeteries. See the Southern mansions of the Garden District.

EPICUREAN DINING

  • Memphis: Enjoy a private after-hours tour of Graceland with Elvis' close friend, George Klein, before a private Highlight Dinner inside Elvis' car museum.
  • Natchez: Learn to make the signature drink of the South, the Mint Julep. Before dining on an elegant, four-course Southern dinner served in the beautifully appointed dining room at Monmouth Plantation.
  • New Orleans: Discover the flair of Creole cuisine during a cooking demonstration and special Highlight Dinner.
  • New Orleans: Join your Travelling Concierge for a grand finalé Celebration Dinner at 'Arnaud's', one of the Big Easy's prized restaurants.
  • 1 Welcome Dinner (WD), 8 Full Breakfasts (FB), 3 Highlight Dinners (HD) and 1 Celebration Dinner (CD).

OUTSTANDING HOTELS

  • Memphis: The Westin Memphis Beale Street Hotel connects you to the unmistakable sound, culture and history of the blues, whilst offering you a soothing and relaxing retreat.
  • New Orleans: The iconic Hotel Monteleone luxury hotel offers an unparalleled combination of Southern hospitality, world-class service and historic surroundings inside the French Quarter.
  • Hotel Overview: The Monmouth Historic Inn & Gardens and the iconic Hotel Monteleone New Orleans offer an unparalleled combination of hospitality, world-class service and luxurious surroundings.

INCLUSIVE LUXURY GOLD SERVICES

  • Be escorted by the crème de la crème of Insight Travelling Concierges - handpicked for every departure. This skilled guide will act as consummate organiser and be your 'friend in a foreign land'.
  • Enjoy the unique comfort of Insight's luxury air-conditioned 40 guest coach, with extended leg room and an on-board restroom. It's Business Class comfort, complete with complimentary bottled water for you to enjoy during your luxury coaching tour.
  • A personal radio headset gives you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating insights and commentaries.
  • At every hotel, you'll be treated to seamless baggage handling with prompt delivery right to your door.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. Plus, we include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi.
  • With Insight Flourishes, from time to time, your Travelling Concierge will enchant you with local tidbits, each representing authentic food or beverages unique to the destination.
  • Included airport transfers on first and last itinerary day.

Accommodation

 

Gaylord Opryland Resort Nashville

Nashville (Central) - USA

Complimentary Wifi

The Gaylord Opryland Resort is a premier hotel offering guests all the excitement and energy of Music City under one spectacular roof. Guest rooms feature comfortable beds with thick mattresses and fluffy down pillows, mini-refrigerators and 32" LCD cable televisions with CNN, ESPN and HBO. Room service is available 24 hours a day. During downtime, enjoy our Opryland hotel's 9 acres of lush indoor gardens and cascading waterfalls, or unwind in Relache Spa & Salon, our on-site spa offering massages, facials and more.

The Westin Memphis Beale Street Memphis

Memphis (Central) - USA

Complimentary Wifi

Located on Beale Street, this hotel connects you to the unmistakable sound of Memphis and immerses you into the culture and history of the blues. Along with numerous barbecue restaurants, there are countless things to do in Memphis. You’re steps away from FedEx Forum, Gibson Museum, Beale Street, and so much more! 203 beautiful guest rooms and suites, featuring Westin's plush Heavenly Bed®, promise restoration and relaxation. Thoughtful amenities such as radio alarm clocks with i-Pod docking stations, coffeemakers with Starbucks Coffee®, and signature bath amenities help make your stay enjoyable.

Monmouth Historic Inn and Gardens Natchez

Natchez (Scenic) - USA

Complimentary Wifi

An early 19th-century antebellum mansion set in 26 acres of manicured gardens. Monmouth Historic Inn is a National Historic Landmark. With an ambiance reminiscent of a bygone age, the rooms and suites are as perfect as a picture. Available either in the main house or in any of the seven outbuildings, rooms have period furnishings and/or antebellum-era reproductions. Some include a spa tub and a fireplace. Wander around the meticulously nurtured gardens amidst blooming magnolias, roses, azaleas and Monmouth’s signature collection of angel statuary, accompanied by the gentle humming of cicadas. Then enjoy mint juleps or a cocktail of your choice in the Quitman Study/Lounge, with complimentary hors d’oeuvres, followed by dinner in the award winning Restaurant 1818 inside the antebellum home.

Hotel Monteleone New Orleans

New Orleans (Central) - USA

Complimentary Wifi

Hotel Monteleone New Orleans

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  • 5 out of 5

    Nashville - New Orleans

    7/4/2017 Terence Hatch, Calala, Australia

    We had a wonderful holiday which was very well organised and the tour guide was very passionate about her job.

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  • 4 out of 5

    Great Experience

    6/14/2017 David Davis, Burwood, Australia

    For someone who had little knowledge of the American south the tour was a real eye opener. All the places visited were interesting to exciting. The private after hours tour of Gracelands incredibly organised by Luxury Gold was a real highlight Apart from Gracelands the other feature of the tour that was outstanding was the excellence without exception of the local guides/experts. My only downer was the stay at the Gaylord hotel in Nashville to big and to far to walk to your rooms,that was generally the comment by my fellow tourists The driver Rosy and concierge Gordon were both very good and helped make the tour the success it was. My rating was 4.5 which is very high

    1 out of 1 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Fabulous fabulous time

    6/7/2017 Pamela Borden, East Hampstead, United States

    From beginning to end the tour was one of the best that I have ever travelled on. The private tours were fantastic. Gordon was so wonderfully attentive to all of the travelers. He went over and above to be sure that everyone was satisfied and made comfortable. Nashville to New Orleans all encompassing were so interesting. Will travel again very soon with you.

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  • 5 out of 5

    Absolutely fabulous

    6/7/2017 Richard Borden, East Hampstead, United States

    Not enough space here to express what a wonderful tour I experienced. From the minute we arrived to the time we sadly had to leave we were treated like royalty by our tour director. Gordon took such wonderful care to make sure that all of the guests were taken care of and shown the best time ever. Will certainly tour with you again hopefully in the near future.

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  • 5 out of 5

    Great Trip

    6/11/2015 Richard Morrison, Las Vegas, United States

    This was our second tour with Insight Vacations and we were definitely NOT disappointed. For us, the tour began in Nashville,the home of the "Grand Old Opry", with a two night stay at the wonderful Gaylord Opryland Resort. Our Tour Director, Gordon Schoen, was excellent. He provided information and history about the "South" from slavery times-Civil War-Hurricane Katrina. Of course we must mention our Tour Driver, Howard Calloway, who managed the coach with the utmost expertise. We always new the ride was going to be smooth with Howard at the wheel. Our visits to Memphis, Graceland, Vicksburg and New Orleans were all excellent. And of course if you are in that part of the country, you must visit Beale Street in Memphis and Bourbon Street in New Orleans. Our accommodations were excellent, especially Gaylord Opryland Resort and Monmouth Plantation. Suggestion-Providing some information regarding Jean Lafitte, Andrew Jackson and the "Battle of New Orleans" during the War of 1812 would be of interest, especially to our foreign friends.

    7 out of 8 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    awesome trip

    6/5/2015 Rubina Sarkisyan, Encino, United States

    I just came back from Southern Tastes and Dixie Tunes trip May 22-30. we had a great amazing time. This is my second trip with Insight vacation and I will make sure I will travel at least once per year. Special thanks to Gordon Schoen our tour manager, our driver Howard and all the nice people we met from all over the world.

    4 out of 4 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    A great time

    5/31/2015 Heather Hopcroft, Vermont South, Australia

    The tour was terrific. A great tour leader ensured everything went smoothly. Ann knew all the great places and gave a good balance of information and time to rest on bus trip. We had 2 days in most places. Everything was included which was also a great bonus. No list of extras!

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  • 5 out of 5

    Jan Cheers

    10/12/2014 Janine Cheers, Frankston South, Australia

    Wonderful trip all round. Gordon was an excellent Tour Guide. Kept us well informed, entertained & confidently handled & sorted out any problems any of us experienced along the way which was very reassuring. Itinerary was terrific & we covered a lot of ground but it was well paced out. Good bunch of fellow travellers too. Certainly would recommend this tour to others. Thanks Insight once again. This has been my 4th tour with you & I am doing your Classic Mid Atlantic Tour after this.

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  • 5 out of 5

    Great holiday

    7/24/2014 Clive Strickland, Coquette Point, Australia

    Thank you for a great holiday and to our Tour Guide Ann Harness, we say thank you for her knowledge and the way she conducted our tour. Our highlights were Nashville (the Grand Ole Opry) Memphis (Gracelands) and New Orleans (everything about it). Thanks again Clive and Zena Strickland

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  • 5 out of 5

    southern tastes & dixie tunes aplenty

    6/11/2013 Joy L Neff, Eau Claire, United States

    A month ago today I returned from the wonderful Southern Tastes & Dixie Tunes Tour. My mind & body are still feeling the rhythms. My mouth & stomach have decided there is nothing worth eating here at home. My emotions miss my wonderful traveling companies. Thank you Insight & Gordon for wonderful memories. Joy from Wisconsin

    3 out of 3 people found this comment useful

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