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Get into the holiday spirit with a cruise down the mighty Mississippi River with seven Creole-inspired nights aboard the largest paddlewheeler ever, American Queen Voyages’ American Queen. Begin this festive adventure in Memphis with a visit to Graceland, then embark on a seven-night adventure southbound towards New Orleans. This itinerary includes one premium excursion, and all meals aboard ship! In addition, this Lower Mississippi River cruise includes a special Holiday gala, bonfires on the levee, holiday decorations, and performances. After the cruise enjoy two nights in New Orleans with activities including a guided city tour and visits to Mardi Gras World and the National WWII Museum plus time at leisure to explore the city at its most merry and bright.
You can earn a $100 Travel Show Credit good for your next trip with Holiday Vacations by simply clicking the photo to watch the online travel show! The show is about 10 minutes long and at the end, you'll have the ability to submit your contact information and receive a travel credit which can be applied to this or any Holiday Vacations tour. Get started now!
December 10th, 2023 - December 20th, 2023
Price Per Person
Double Junior Suite
Single Junior Suite
Final Payment Date: 08/02/2023
Day 1 : Fly to Memphis
Enjoy Memphis with a night out on the town to find tasty local cuisine and other activities at your leisure. Our accommodations tonight are in Memphis.
Day 2 : Graceland
Before we embark on our Mississippi River cruise, we tour Graceland, home of The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, Elvis Presley, at the most wonderful time of the year. Voted the #1 Best Historic Holiday Home Tour by USA Today, Graceland continues The King’s tradition of spectacular and over-the-top Christmas décor. Afterwards, enjoy lunch on your own in Graceland, perhaps grabbing a bite at an authentic 50s diner. Next, we board The American Queen for a seven-night cruise.
Day 3 : Mississippi Delta
Our first port of call is Cleveland, located along the Mississippi Delta. This distinctive northwest region of the state lies between the Yazoo and Mississippi Rivers, dubbed “The Most Southern Place On Earth,” nicknamed for its culture and geography. Follow the currents of the Mississippi Delta that have inspired storytellers and creators for centuries. Tour the new GRAMMY Museum Mississippi and witness cutting-edge interactive exhibits that celebrate the history, breadth, and cultural significance of American music before browsing downtown boutiques and restaurants.
Day 4 : Vicksburg
Today’s port of call is in Vicksburg, Mississippi. This town is brimming with American history which is highlighted on our included hop-on, hop-off tour. Visit the Church of the Holy Trinity that features 34 stained glass windows and inspired architecture or the Vicksburg National Military Park and its marble Illinois Monument. This site is where the Siege of Vicksburg took place, when the Union Army made its critical push to obtain a favorable position during the American Civil War.
Day 5 : Natchez
Delight in the charming port of call in Natchez and admire the many historic homes that line the quaint streets. Stock up on Southern staples like muscadine juice, salsas, dips, jellies, and every souvenir imaginable including alligator items at the Old South Trading Post. Discover the history of the of the magnificent Rosalie Mansion on a self-guided tour. This Federal-style structure was built in 1832 by a wealthy cotton planter and has been maintained by the Daughters of the American Revolution.
Day 6 : St. Francisville
Today’s port of call, St. Francisville, features a natural formation of bluffs, ridges, and foothills in addition to the historic city center. Pre-war homes, quaint shops, and beautiful views make this an idyllic place to spend the day.
Day 7 : Baton Rouge
Our stop in the historic city of Baton Rouge. Get a feel for the bustling city with an included hop-on, hop-off tour including stops at the Capitol Park Museum and the USS Kidd, a 376-foot long 1945 Fletcher-Class Destroyer now converted into a museum. Enjoy the included shore excursion – the Ultimate Cajun Adventure. Channel the adventurous Creole spirit on an airboat adventure down the lush swamplands where gators reside. Our Cajun guide provides cultural and historical insight while pointing out the animal inhabitants of the calm waters. Next, a lunch at Crawfish USA demonstrates the Cajun culinary tradition of flavorful fusion. Finally, reflect on the cultural contributions and hardships of 18th and 19th-century rural life in Louisiana at the sprawling LSU Rural Life Museum.
Day 8 : Nottoway
Our stop today is at the American Queen Voyages exclusive port of Nottoway. Delight in the grandeur of a bygone era on a tour of Nottoway Resort, one of the South's largest remaining antebellum mansions. This 64-room, three-story palatial mansion was completed in 1859 and has been fully restored.
Day 9 : New Orleans
Welcome to New Orleans! After we disembark, take a guided tour of the city cloaked in dazzling decorations and enjoy lunch on our own at the French Market. Explore the exciting Mardi Gras World where we get a historical overview of the famous festival and view floats so elaborate you will have a new appreciation for the artists who create these massive 3D pieces. Enjoy dinner and the evening at your leisure.
Day 10 : National WWII Museum
Visit the masterful National WWII Museum featuring immersive multimedia experiences, first-person oral histories, massive collections of artifacts, and more that showcase and honor the Greatest Generation and its veterans who made so many sacrifices in the name of freedom. Later we enjoy a farewell jazz brunch at the world-renowned Court of Two Sisters. The remainder of the day is yours to explore the city and its holiday offerings as you please.
Day 11 : Fly Home
WHO Radio Pickup Locations:
Des Moines, IA - Des Moines International Airport
Tour days tend to be shorter in length, at a relaxed pace, and include lots of unscheduled time for leisure. Expect standing and walking for extended periods of time on flat surfaces, mostly low altitudes, and consistent temperatures.
Tour days usually move at a leisurely pace. Some days’ scheduled activities last longer than others. Expect standing and walking for long periods of time on occasionally uneven terrain. You may experience changes in altitude or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a consistent pace, and may include long travel days. Expect standing and walking for long periods of time on uneven surfaces. Some destinations may have changes in altitude and/or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a brisk pace, and may include lengthy travel days. Expect long periods of walking and standing on uneven surfaces. Scheduled activities may require physical effort or have distinct changes in altitude or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a vigorous pace, and may include lengthy travel days. Expect long periods of walking and standing on rough surfaces. Scheduled activities may require physical effort or have distinct changes in altitude or temperature.