A TASTE OF THE TRUE SOUTH

Main destination New Orleans, Louisiana · About River or Ocean Cruises

10 Days | A TASTE OF THE TRUE SOUTH

Main destination New Orleans, Louisiana · About River or Ocean Cruises
Memory flows deep and sentiment eddies and swirls along the Lower Mississippi River. Experience authentic Southern culture as you journey through living history and soak in the romantic spirit of the Antebellum era. Fertile cotton fields, vast sugar cane plantations and imposing pillared mansions will transport you back in time, as will the Civil War battlefields. 

April 4-13, 2020

Inside Cabin - $4995
Window Cabin - $6995
Open Veranda Cabin - $7295
Private Veranda Cabin - $7895
 
Deposit is $800pp
Final is due November 15, 2019
 

This package includes:

  • Swamp Boat Adventure and Plantation Tour with Cajun Lunch – 9 hours
  • Hop on Hop off New Orleans ticket
  • The Elvis Experience – 5 hours
  • Complimentary Hop-On Hop-Off shore excursions in each port of call
  • Complimentary 2-night hotel stay before your voyage – includes breakfast, taxes, porterage and transfers to the vessel
  • All onboard meals, including both fine dining and casual cuisine
  • 24-Hour Room Service
  • Complimentary wine and beer with dinner
  • Complimentary cappuccino, espresso, speciality coffees, tea, bottled water and soft drinks throughout your voyage
  • Gracious service from a friendly, all-American staff
  • Acclaimed entertainment worthy of Broadway
  • Our own dedicated fleet of deluxe motorcoaches
  • Roundtrip flight from Calgary
  • Port Charges and transfers
Please check the tour tab for our terms and conditions

Itinerary

Day 1: We will depart Calgary this morning and fly to New Orleans

This evening is free to explore.
Overnight Hilton New Orleans Riverside

Day 2: New Orleans

Discover New Orleans’ Cajun and Creole cultures on this full‐day swamp and plantation sightseeing tour. Head deep into the secluded bayous to witness Cajun living and spot native wildlife. Then visit Oak Alley Plantation and Laura Plantation to view stunning architecture, oak‐lined esplanades and sugar cane fields. Grand tour of Cajun country Narrated boat tour through the winding bayous in remote cypress swamps Enjoy a traditional lunch at one of the oldest plantations in the south, Oak Alley Plantation Guided tour of this grand mansion Visit Laura, a Creole Plantation
Overnight Hilton New Orleans Riverside (B/L)

Day 3: New Orleans

Discover historic New Orleans in an open‐top double‐decker bus on this hop‐on hop‐off sightseeing tour. With your full‐day ticket, design a personal itinerary with 18 possible stops, including the French Market, Jackson Square, St. Louis Cemetery and the Garden District. Enjoy unobstructed views and fun onboard commentary as you soak up ‘The Big Easy’. Be back at the hotel by 3pm, when we will depart for the American Queen and get settled in before we paddle away at 5pm.

Day 4: Nottoway Plantation, LA

Nottoway Plantation, LA
Nottoway is the South’s largest, most glorious remaining antebellum mansion, with a rich history dating back to 1859. In a fabulous location along the Great River Road, this White Castle of the South transports visitors back to an era of glory and grandeur. Set among a natural backdrop of vibrant gardens and 200-year-old oak trees, the mansion boasts three floors and 64 bedrooms, and flaunts an incredible 22 white square columns. The most popular room among guests is the White Ballroom, which is painted entirely in white with elaborate gold décor throughout. Rooms are trimmed in custom plaster frieze made from Spanish moss, clay, plaster and mud, and are all original to the house. And as if that weren’t enough, this immaculate mansion was constructed with 365 openings – one for each day of the year. Nottoway Plantation captivates all with a brilliant blend of true Southern hospitality, history and mystery.

Day 5: St. Francisville, LA

Established in 1809, St. Francisville is the oldest town in the Florida Parishes. Below where St. Francisville is located currently, was a settlement called Bayou Sara in the 1790’s. When this settlement was destroyed by flooding and fires, many of the structures and artifacts were hauled up the bluff into St. Francisville where they are still standing. The town is referred to as “two miles long and two yards wide,” but that definitely doesn’t mean they have nothing to offer! With over 140 buildings on the National Register, beautiful plantation homes nestled in the rolling countryside and bustling Main Street shops, this quaint town situated on the bluffs of the Mississippi River has a style all its own. 
Royal Street
Guests can hop off here and walk over to The Republic of West Florida Historical Site. Or choose to stroll into Grandmother’s Buttons, a very unique southern boutique. Take a stroll down Royal Street at any of the shops or just to admire the beautiful trees and houses. Or stop into Grandmother’s Buttons – a unique boutique that offers jewelry made out of 100 year old buttons. Inside the store, you can visit the button museum to learn the history of the business and the inspirations of the art. The store is located inside of a former historic bank lobby with 16-foot ceilings and a bank vault, even if jewelry is not in your plans – the architecture is beautiful!
Old Market Hall
Become steeped in southern charm and local artistry. Stop at Harrington Gallery to experience one-of-a-kind paintings and beautiful pieces by local artists. Visit the Shanty Too, a quaint boutique featuring artisan jewelry and gifts. The structure was built in 1819 and has a beautiful open layout. Now, the building is used as a market center for the town to host their small businesses. Every day is different, you may see anything from jewelry and makeup, scarves and dresses, or snacks and produce!
West Feliciana Historical Society Museum
Learn about St. Francisville and Louisiana’s history and culture. Also, feel free to stop at the West Feliciana Parish Library and relax with a good book or newspaper. This museum is dedicated to the history, people, and architectures of West Feliciana Parish. Built inside a former hardware store built in 1896, the Historical Society Museum displays many artifacts, photos, costumes, and articles all portraying the history of St. Francisville. Just across the street, you can stop in any of the fine boutiques and shops!
Grace Episcopal Church
Originally built in 1827, this restored Gothic structure is one of the oldest Protestant churches in Louisiana. Learn about its significance during the Civil War and its’ historical Civil War cemetery. Built in 1860 and rebuilt in 1893 after the Union caused heavy damage in 1863, Grace Episcopal Church stands tall in St. Francisville. Enjoy a self-guided tour of the church and the grounds and make sure to check out the organ located inside – it dates all the way back to 1860! This church is one of the state’s oldest Protestant churches that still stand today.

Day 6: Natchez, MS

This charming river town was founded in 1716, making it the oldest city on the Mississippi. The city is known for its elegance, hospitality and impressive preservation of history – found on every street corner. Enjoy the unique shops, restaurants, museums and historical homes, all of which contribute to Hugh Bayless’ book “The 100 Best Towns in America.” 
Rosalie Mansion
Built in 1823, this was a Union headquarters for Natchez during the Civil War built in 1823. This 1716 mansion was built by the French as a fort on the bluffs of Natchez. The Mississippi State Society Daughters of the American Revolution have since gained ownership and have been maintaining the house and grounds since 1938. On this guided tour, hear the history of the house and the artifacts from an expert tour guide dressed in period clothing. Guests can explore the extensive gardens, gift shop, library, or carriage house before they leave.
Natchez Visitor’s Center
Learn about the river in this beautiful southern town, visit exhibits, or shop at the gift shop! Enjoy a short, 20-minute video in the Visitor’s Center Theater and hear about the history of Natchez upon arrival. Then, explore the building at your leisure. At the entrance a scaled display model of the city is showcased. Stop in the office for some general information and questions about the town and its history, including town highlights and points of interest.
William Johnson House Museum
An incredible, historic 3-story brick house constructed after the 1840 Natchez tornado. William Johnson was known as the “Barber of Natchez”; he began as a slave and gained his freedom at age eleven. After his freedom, he began to work his way up in society, eventually becoming almost fully accepted within society. As the town barber, William Johnson was able to hear the stories and gossip of many of the residents, which he documented in his diary for more than 16 years. His 3-story brick home was built in 1840 and showcases many.
Magnolia Hall
This fully restored mansion was owned by a wealthy cotton broker and merchant and was built in 1858. This Greek Revival Mansion was built in 1858. The house was built before the breakout of the Civil War in town but did suffer some damage – a cannon ball was actually launched into their kitchen! It is now fully restored – the main floor offers a showcase of many antiques and furnishings and the upper floors offer a costume collection located in the Historic Clothing Museum. Tour the house and then stop in the gift shop for some souvenirs.
Stanton Hall
A magnificent, Antebellum Greek Revival Mansion built on an entire city block of Natchez. Irish Immigrant and cotton merchant Frederick Stanton built this Palatial Greek Revival mansion in 1857. It was appraised at $83,000 during that period, even before it was furnished. Take a 30-minute tour of the house – which takes up the entire block and is fully furnished. Afterwards you can stop for lunch in the Carriage House Restaurant, known for their fine southern cuisine.
King's Tavern and Charbonneau Distillery
Step off the motorcoach and walk through the front gate leading to the second floor porch of this 1789 building - the oldest structure in the city of Natchez. Join us for an American Queen exclusive tour of King's Tavern - a newly opened restaurant and bar, owned by Regina Charbonneau, a nationally renowned chef, and her husband Doug. Enjoy an exclusive tour of the distillery followed by a guided tour of the bar, located just next door.
Natchez Association for the Preservation of Afro-American Culture Museum
View photographs and artifacts or hear the history of African-American heritage in Natchez and Adams County. Here, learn the history and culture of the African Americans in Natchez over time. Guests can hear the stories or explore the many exhibits that portray the hardships that African Americans suffered and those that prevailed in a time period which allowed for minimal success to the entire race. Add another dimension of Natchez history by stopping at this museum.

Day 7: Vicksburg, MS

Vicksburg, MS
Vicksburg perfectly blends Southern culture and heritage with exciting modern attractions. Described as the key to the South by President Abraham Lincoln, this Southern town carries a history unlike any other Civil War city. Vicksburg was founded in 1811 and grew as a vital river port city. It was a major component to the Civil War and carries much of the history within the town. Today, Vicksburg is a popular spot for tourists to learn about the battles of the city, taste the cuisine, visit the many museums and pick out the perfect souvenir. 
Church of the Holy Trinity
This Episcopal Church is more than 125 years old and houses six Tiffany stained-glass windows. This incredible church spans over 125 feet long, is 52 feet wide, and reaches 61 feet high to the apex of the roof. The church was constructed in Norman style, finished in red brick, though it showcases zigzag tracery which was highly unique to the style at the time. The stained glass windows may be the main draw – there are 34. They were given as memorials and six of them were created by Tiffany Studios in New York under the supervision of Louis Comfort Tiffany.
Anchuca Mansion
Anchuca, meaning “happy home” is one of the most significant antebellum homes in Vicksburg and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was built in 1830 and provided shelter for those suffering during the War. The word Anchuca derives from an Indian word meaning, “happy home”, which is the exact vibe this home gives off. Built in 1830 by politician J.W. Mauldin, Anchuca is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. During the war, the house was used as a shelter for those who had suffered. Tour the home and its beautiful furnishings.
Old Court House Museum
Built in 1858, this building stands as the most historic structure in Vicksburg, hosting speakers and guests like Jefferson Davis, Ulysses S. Grant, Teddy Roosevelt, and others! Construction for this colossal courthouse began in 1858 and was completed miraculously just two years later in 1860 for $100,000. It was restored by Eva Whitaker Davis after the tornado of 1953 swept through Mississippi. Now, the courthouse is filled with countless artifacts including, confederate flags, portraits, the trophy antlers won by steamboat Robert E. Lee in an 1870 race, an original Teddy Bear given by Theodore Roosevelt, and much more!
Lower Mississippi River Museum
Listen to the risks and benefits of life surrounding the Mississippi River and learn the Federal Government’s role the Mississippi River’s past and present. This museum’s mission is to show the role of the government in Mississippi’s past and future, to maintain a healthy river. Guests can explore showcases of the history of Vicksburg and the region or exhibits about the 1927 flood and how it affected Vicksburg and the Mississippi River. Learn about the fish of the river up close in the museum’s 1,515 gallon aquarium or choose your own adventure on the river with the Mississippi Trail Interactive exhibit! (Closed on Mondays and Tuesdays)
Yesterday's Children Antique Doll & Toy Museum
This museum was featured in Southern Living, Delta Magazine and Dolls Magazine. Enjoy a self-guided tour featuring over 1,000 dolls and toys dating back to 1843. At the Biedenharn Coca-Cola™Museum, enjoy the wide variety of Coca-Cola™ memorabilia in an authentic candy store and soda fountain setting. This building is where Coca-Cola was first bottled in 1894.

Day 8: Port of the Mississippi Delta / Greenville, MS

The Mississippi Delta is more than a geographical region. It is a way of life - a true cultural experience based around agriculture, music and history. These small river towns have been the inspiration for authors, musicians and artists for centuries. Lower Mississippi River voyages include a unique glimpse into a Port of the Mississippi Delta.
Greenville History Museum
Here, guests can learn about Greenville and all the important events and people the town has to offer. The museum is home to many artifacts, photos, memorabilia and souvenirs dating back to the early 1800s. See personal objects of local past citizens, businesses or well-known historical present-day celebrities! The museum has plenty of information about the Greenville Flood of 1927, including many pictures and stories.
Hebrew Union Temple 
This guided, extensive museum about Hebrew history was built in 1906. Located in front of the temple is an original carriage stone - used for passengers as they climbed in and out of horse-drawn carriages in the 19th and early- 20th centuries. The temple showcases original stained glass and an original working organ both from 1906 and extensive artifacts and memorabilia from WWII.
1927 Flood Museum 
Located in the oldest structure in Downtown Greenville, the Flood Museum depicts the history of one of the worst natural disasters the county has ever seen. View the flood artifacts and photos illustrating the flood’s impact during the long four months Greenville was flooded. Watch a short documentary illustrating the cause and effects of the Great Flood and the struggle of man against nature.
E.E. Bass Cultural Arts Center 
The art center is home to the Armitage Herschell Carousel. This carousel was created in 1901 and is the oldest fully functioning Armitage carousel today. Mississippi at that time was still legally segregated, many people approached the owner about having separate nights for carousel rides, but the owner refused, he wished for everyone to ride together. Take a ride on this amazing machine and hear the whistle blow and travel back in time.
Trop Casino 
Just a short distance from the dock, guests can find themselves in Greenville’s Trop Casino. The city’s newest addition includes a $6.8 million expansion including a riverboat and land-based casino. Enjoy the latest slots and table games or enjoy a fine dining experience at one of the casino’s extraordinary restaurants.
St. Joseph’s Catholic Church 
This fine Gothic Revival Church, erected in 1907, is the second building of this parish. It was designed and financed by Father P.J. Korstenbroek, who served at the church for 33 years and was memorialized in William Alexander Percy’s “Lanterns on the Levee”. Many of the stained-glass windows came from the Munich studios of Emi Frei.
Greenville’s Writers Exhibit
Located on the second floor of the William Alexander Percy Memorial Library, the exhibit highlights a number of writers from Greenville. Many of those featured helped to create an extraordinary literary atmosphere in Greenville. Writers who have called the city home have won the Pulitzer Prize, National Book Award and O. Henry Award. Writers influenced by the creative ambiance here include William Alexander Percy (for whom the library is named) Shelby Foote, Walker Percy, Hodding Carter, Jr., Charles Bell, Beverly Lowery, Ellen Douglas, Bern Keating, Julia Reed and David L. Cohn.

Day 9: River Cruising

Relax on deck with a copy of Huckleberry Finn or another imaginative selection borrowed from our revered Mark Twain Gallery, enjoy some quiet time in the Ladies' Tea Parlor, or recruit your fellow guests for an exciting board game in our Gentlemen's Card Room. For a remarkable one-of-a-kind experience, take a guided tour of the American Queen's Engine Room to explore the inner workings of our classic, steam-powered vessel. There is always plenty to do between dawn and dusk on the river! 

Day 10: Memphis, TN

Arrival 8:00 AM
Thank you for cruising with us! We hope that you had a memorable experience and look forward to welcoming you aboard in the future.

Experience the city that “The King” called home on a guided journey through Memphis! Put on your blue suede shoes and board the luxury river coach as it departs toward Memphis’ heart and soul – Beale Street!

Oozing with the gritty feeling of the blues and rock `n' roll, Beale Street's musical history is alive in every store front lining the road, street band performing on the corner, and brick paving our way. A larger-than-life iconic brass statue of Elvis marks the starting point of the “Walking in Memphis” portion of this exclusive excursion. Here, we will experience the most famous street in Memphis as our local guide leads us through the vibrant city he calls home. From blues to barbeque, Beale Street is a must for any visitor to Memphis!

The journey continues with Beale Street in our rearview and the home of “The King” himself ahead, Graceland! Enter through “The King's” front door where the presence of Elvis can still be felt within the walls as you walk through the same rooms as he did after a long day's performance. An interactive iPad audio tour will help guide us through each room, providing thoughtful narration by actor and Elvis enthusiast John Stamos, as well as personal commentary by Elvis' daughter, Lisa Marie.

At this musical mecca, discover the personal side of Elvis. See the famous Jungle Room, an homage to “The King's” love for Hawaii. Featuring green shagged carpets, a built-in rock waterfall, plastic plants, and lacquered wood furniture, the Jungle Room was Elvis’s man-cave turned recording studio. Then view the office where Elvis' father Vernon managed his career, as well his living room, kitchen, TV room, and pool room. See the Trophy Building and Racquetball Building, newly-restored to how it looked in 1977. Then take a short stroll through the Meditation Garden, where the grave site of Elvis and his family are located. Pay your respects to “The King of Rock and Roll” and his contributions to American music and entertainment, knowing his legacy resonates throughout the world and spans multiple generations.

But the adventure doesn't end there! Your complete Elvis experience also includes exclusive exhibits with full access to the state-of-the-art Visitor Entertainment Complex, Elvis Presley Car Museum, Elvis: The Entertainer Career Showcase Museum, Elvis Discover Exhibits, and Elvis’ two custom airplanes!

This excursion begins at the dock of the vessel and concludes at the Memphis International Airport.

Optional Shore Excursions available – please request more details

Terms, conditions and restrictions apply; pricing, availability, and other details subject to change and/ or apply to US or Canadian residents. Please confirm details and booking information with your travel advisor.

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