Day 1 - June 4: Today we meet at the airport and board our flight to San Francisco. Our motor coach will meet us and take us to Fisherman’s Wharf where you can enjoy some lunch and free time. There are fun shops, open-air markets, museums and even a World War II Submarine. We’ve also included a cable car ride to Union Square where our bus will take us back. We’ll check into our hotel and relax. Dinner is included tonight at one of the fine restaurants at Pier 39. Tour to pay for cable car and dinner today.
Day 2 - June 5: After a relaxing breakfast this morning, a local tour guide will join us to show us the highlights of the city including Golden Gate Park and Bridge, interesting neighborhoods, Chinatown, Scenic Overlook at Twin Mountain, and more. This is truly one of our most beautiful cities due to its natural setting and variety of landscapes. This afternoon, we'll cross the Golden Gate Bridge and drive north to Garberville. Our drive takes us through the pleasant valleys displaying lovely grape vineyards as far as the eye can see. This is California wine country and it is a delightful drive. Our hotel puts us in position to enjoy the redwoods tomorrow. Tour to pay for breakfast and tour today.
Day 3 - June 6: Today we enjoy the mighty Redwood Forests of northern California. We’re 15 minutes from Humboldt State Park where nature displays its incredible masterpieces. The crowns of the tallest redwoods soar more than 300 feet skyward, taller and older than any other living thing known to man. Some of these trees are over 1,000 years old and many were here when Columbus discovered America! After a short stop at the Visitors Center, we'll drive over to the Founder's Grove and enjoy a 30 minute walk (optional) through these incredible giants. Several years ago, one of the tallest trees fell and you’ll get some perspective on its size which is over a football field long. This stroll is impressive. We’ll then continue on the coach enjoying part of the famous “Avenue of the Giants” as we continue north. After lunch, we’ll spend the afternoon in Redwood National Park, enjoying some additional lovely walks through these impressive groves. The trails are flat and the varying scenes are simply beyond words. These giants thrive ONLY in this part of the world. We're just a few minutes from the border with Oregon. We'll stay in Brookings, Oregon at the Beach Front Inn. All rooms have an ocean view, about 50 yards from the water. We'll have a Prime Rib or Salmon dinner together tonight in the adjacent restaurant (Smuggler’s Cove) overlooking the sea. Tour to pay for breakfast, dinner and park admissions today.
Day 4 - June 7: We'll enjoy a thirty minute ride up the coast to Gold Beach where we'll board a Jet Boat for a delightful jet boat ride on the Rogue River. The boat is fully enclosed and climate-controlled. You can enjoy the scenery from inside, or step onto the decks and absorb the beauty. The scenery is phenomenal. We'll cruise for about two hours to the town of Agness where we'll enjoy a lunch buffet in a quaint setting, followed by our return trip to Gold Beach. Watch for beaver, otter, osprey and black-tailed deer. Our bus will meet us to take us up the coast to Florence, where our hotel near the lovely Suislaw River. Tour to pay for breakfast, lunch and boat trip today.
Day 5 - June 8: Today you'll experience one of the truly scenic drives. The 100 mile stretch to Newport, Oregon is scene after spectacular scene that cannot be overrated. We'll pass by endless bays and witness the relentless, pounding surf. We'll see hillsides full of rhododendrons, myrtle and azaleas. We'll make several photo stops along the way, including the famous Cape Perpetua area where you'll have a chance to walk the trails and enjoy the views. The road weaves along rugged cliffs with rock promontories that stretch for miles. We'll also see the interesting Haceta Head Laighthouse State Park along the way. This is the most photographed lighthouse on the Oregon Coast and you’ll see why. Those who are interested can walk up to the light house (1/4 mile uphill walk). We’ll then continue to the town of Newport to see another famous lighthouse called the Yaquina Head Light. If we hit the tides right, you can explore in the nearby tide pools which display some amazing sea life. A late lunch is on your own near the waterfront before continuing inland to Portland arriving at about 6:30. You can relax and have dinner around the hotel tonight. Our hotel for the next two nights is the in the Portland suburb of Oswego. Tour to pay for breakfast and admissions today.
Day 6 - June 9: Today we enjoy one of our country's great traditions: The Portland Rose Festival. We'll start with reserved seats to the main event: The Grand Floral Parade. Our seats are inside the coliseum (fully covered) in the center, affording perfect views as they pass through the arena. After the parade, we'll visit the famous Portland Rose Gardens in a stunning setting overlooking the city. Every kind of rose imaginable is displayed here. Since we got up very early this morning, we’ll have an hour to rest at the hotel this afternoon. In the evening, we have dinner reservations at one of Portland’s nice restaurants. Tour to pay for light breakfast, parade and dinner today.
Day 7 – June 10: We've seen some incredible scenery to this point, but the Columbia River Gorge is also spectacular. Our day trip today will take us east of Portland on one of America’s great scenic drives. Our first stop is Vista House with sweeping views of the Columbia River. We’ll then enjoy photo stops at three of the gorge’s famous waterfalls, including impressive Multnomah Falls, the fourth highest in the world. We’ll enjoy a delicious lunch at the Multnomah Lodge. The setting and the food are delightful. We’ll then return to the airport for our flight back to Salt Lake. Tour pays for breakfast and lunch.
The Redwoods, by Joseph B. Strauss (builder of the Golden Gate Bridge)
These are the last two stanzas of his poem, written decades ago about the Redwoods::
This is their temple, vaulted high,
And here we pause with reverent eye,
With silent tongue and awe-struck soul;
For here we sense life's proper goal;
To be like these, straight, true and fine,
To make our world, like theirs, a shrine;
Sink down, oh traveler, on your knees,
God stands before you in these trees.