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Day 1 – Depart early morning and begin your travels into the spectacular fall foliage colors of New England. With a lunch and comfort stops along the way arrive at your Syracuse hotel where you will overnight. Enjoy dinner on your own at a restaurant located near the hotel.
Day 2 – After breakfast in the hotel, check out of your rooms and head out for another day of travel. Before you depart Syracuse, visit the Erie Canal Museum. The Erie Canal Museum was founded in 1962 and is housed in the only existing weighlock building in the United States. The building was constructed in 1850 and now on the National Register of Historic Places.
Arrive in Albany, New York’s capital city. Have lunch on your own. Next, your travels take you to Kennebunkport, Maine. Get out and stretch your legs as you explore the Seashore Trolley Museum, the oldest and largest electric railway museum in the world with a collection of over 250 vehicles.
All aboard! Climb aboard the Kennebunkport Trolley for a 45-minute narrated sightseeing tour. See the many architectural styles and influences employed over the centuries in this seacoast town. Drive by President Bush’s summer home and learn of this town’s rich history. Check into your South Portland hotel. There will be time to relax and refresh before dinner.
Your Welcome to New England Dinner is served in the hotel’s Maine Table Restaurant. Dine on a traditional New England Clambake, featuring lobstah’, steamers and chowdah’. There’s even selections for the landlubbers!
Day 3 – After breakfast in the hotel, board the coach and set out for a day of Downeast discovery. Take a step back in time and experience, up close and personal, what it was like to ride, run and maintain Maine’s two-foot narrow gauge railroads. Climb aboard an antique rail car pulled by steam or diesel locomotives and follow the 1846 right of way of the Atlantic and St. Lawrence Railroad, linking Portland with Montreal. Along the way take in the magnificent views of Portland’s Waterfront.
Your next stop is Freeport, home of Maine’s most famous retailer, LL Bean. Enjoy time at your leisure to shop in the variety of outlet shops and have lunch on your own. On your way out of Freeport, stop for a photo op at the Big Freeport Indian, a local landmark.
Next visit the oldest lighthouse and most sought after destination in Maine, Portland Head. Portland Head has long protected Portland and the adjacent area. The original tower measured 72’ from base to lantern deck and was lit with 16 whale oil lamps. It was first lit on January 10, 1791.
Return back to the hotel to refresh and relax before dinner. Enjoy an included dinner this evening at a local’s favorite restaurant.
Day 4 – After breakfast in the hotel, check out of your rooms. Today, you will depart coastal Maine and head to the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Arrive in New Hampshire mid-morning and hop aboard the Conway Scenic Railroad for a trip back in time. Sit back and relax as this steam engine Valley Train travels northwest through fields and woodlands, crossing the East Branch Saco, and Ellis Rivers enroute to Bartlett. Upon arrival in Bartlett, watch the locomotive “run around” for the return trip to North Conway.
In North Conway discover tax-free shopping at outlet shops galore and have lunch on your own at one of the many eateries.
Take the Mount Washington Cog Railway to the summit of Mount Washington. At the top there is an option for photo opportunities, along with a visit to the Observatory Museum and the historic Tiptop House. On a clear day, the view extends all the way to the Atlantic Ocean.
Visit Franconia Notch State Park, located in the heart of the White Mountain National Forest. Franconia Notch is a spectacular mountain pass traversed by a unique parkway. The nature walks are absolutely exquisite and the views amazing. Witness the site of the Old Man in the Mountain and a beautiful lake situated right at the base of the granite cliffs.
Travel along the spectacular Kancamagus Highway, a 34.5-mile scenic drive along NH’s Rt. 112 that is well known as one of the best fall foliage viewing areas in the country. The Kancamagus Highway is designated an American Scenic Byway for its rich history, aesthetic beauty and culture. Stop for photo ops at scenic vistas along the way.
Arrive at your North Conway Inn. There will be time to relax and and refresh before dinner. Enjoy Southern-style BBQ, the New England Way! It’s a finger-lickin’ and rib-stickin’ great way to end a busy day!
Day 5 – After breakfast in the hotel, say goodbye to North Conway and travel to New Hampshire’s Lake Region. In Meredith, climb aboard the Winnipesauke Scenic Railroad. The rail line was built in 1849, well before any development occurred on the then remote lake. Journey past the front yards of many of the luxurious resort homes that were established by summer vacationers, in the late 1890’s and 1950’s. After the train ride, have lunch on your own in Meredith.
This afternoon, travel south into Massachusetts. Stop in the celebrated town of Plymouth where the Pilgrims landed in 1620. There will be time for a photo op at the legendary Plymouth Rock.
Experience the Pilgrim way of life with a visit to Plimoth Plantation, a re-created 17th-century village. Your admission includes a guided tour of this living museum that shows the original settlement of the Plymouth Colony established in the 17th Century by English colonists, some of who later became known as pilgrims. In the 1627 English Village section of the museum, interpreters have been trained to speak, act and dress appropriately for the period. At Plimoth Plantation they are called historical interpreters, and they interact with their ‘strange visitors’ (i.e. the modern general public) in the first person, answering questions, discussing their lives and viewpoints and participating in tasks such as cooking, planting, blacksmithing and animal husbandry.
Check into your Plymouth, MA hotel and enjoy a complimentary New England Clam Chowder reception. Early evening, return to Plimoth Plantation and enjoy a traditional turkey dinner, served in the style of the 1600’s.
Day 6 – After breakfast in the hotel, board the coach and travel through cranberry country for a tour of one of AD Makepeace Cranberry Bogs. Learn about the history, harvest and commerce of cranberries and enjoy a delicious cranberry treat.
Next, travel to Cape Cod and climb aboard the Cape Cod Central. Feel the rhythm of the train and spirit of the crew as you are whisked away on an exhilarating rail journey. You will pass beautiful cranberry bogs, natural woodlands, lush marshes and beautiful sand dunes as you make your way to the Cape Cod Canal.
Enjoy time at leisure in Hyannis, known as the “Capital of Cape Cod.” Have lunch on your own at a waterfront café and explore the many boutiques and galleries. Return to Plymouth and refresh before dinner. Gather with your co-travelers for a memorable farewell dinner served at shore side restaurant.
Day 7 – After breakfast in the hotel, check out of your rooms and wave goodbye to New England’s Atlantic Coast as you make your way home. With comfort stops and lunch along the way arrive, in Pittsburgh, PA where you will overnight.
Arrive at Pittsburgh’s Station Square early evening. Long ago, people came to this site to meet passengers arriving on the Pittsburgh and Lake Erie Railroad. The Landmark building, which was constructed in 1900 to house the Pittsburgh Terminal Train Station, is now home to two of Pittsburgh’s iconic restaurants. The Freight House Shops, which were once a train shed, houses over 20 unique retailers. You will find everything from Pittsburgh souvenirs, to novelties from around the world. Enjoy dinner on your own.
After dinner, a must see is the Fountain at Bessemer Court located at the heart of Station Square. This state-of-the-art Waltzing Waters Liquid Fireworks Show features hundreds of multi-colored water jets soaring up to 40 feet in the air, choreographed to music. The Fountain performs over ten different shows and is choreographed to musical arrangements that you will love to sing and dance along to.
Day 8 – Check out of the hotel after breakfast and continue your travels home.