Cactus Crawler 2015 Departures:
San Francisco to New Orleans:
- Mon, Jun 22 - Tue, Jun 30
- Mon, Jul 27 - Tue, Aug 4
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Cactus Crawler - 8 Days/8 Nights
Take this affordable backpacker tour from San Francisco to New Orleans! The Cactus Crawler is an adventure with stops at the best National Parks and city highlights, including Zion, Bryce, Big Bend, and Las Vegas!
Day 1 - San Francisco/California Coastline:
We begin our journey by rolling south, soaking up the sun along California's dramatic Highway 1. Wiggle your toes in the sandy shores of the Pacific Ocean and check out seal pups at the protected elephant seal sanctuary on Piedras Blancas beach. Stroll Monterey's Cannery Row, before saying goodbye to the coast and heading east.
Day 2 - Joshua Tree National Park/Las Vegas
This morning, wind your way around massive boulders (or flex your arms and scramble over them) on a hike through the desert wonderland of Joshua Tree National Park. Named after the tree that has become the iconic symbol of the American Southwest, this wild area is home to hidden mines, countless legends, big horn sheep, 5 oases and one desert tortoise! Later, we rock our way into Las Vegas where you can jump-start your heart with adrenaline-pumping rides, take the city by storm in a limo, visit the old neon graveyard museum or get your game on at the black jack tables. Whatever your thrill, Vegas has something for everyone!
Day 3 & 4 - Grand Canyon National Park:
At Arizona’s awe-inspiring park, stroll along the Rim Trail and behold the canyon’s wonder from the many overlooks, or go for the gusto and descend into the canyon on one of the routes on Bright Angel or South Kaibab trails. Whichever you choose, enjoy the mind-blowing panorama — a perfect backdrop to our gourmet cookout.
Day 5 - New Mexico/Gila Wilderness:
Absorb the nature of this rustic desert terrain of Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument on a tour of the natural caves — inhabited more than 700 years ago by ancestral Pueblo people. Reflect on ancient times while soaking in a natural hot springs under the starry skies of a cool desert night.
Day 6 - New Mexico/Tularosa Basin:
Traverse the largest gypsum sand dunes in the world and try to capture photos of African Onyx, or just roll around in the sparkling White Sands National Monument for your own playful photographic opportunities. Round-em up, we'll head out toward the "Lone Star State" after a desert sunset.
Day 7 - Austin, Texas:
Yee-haw, welcome to Texas, y'all! Hit the big city with your friends and jam to a concert in Austin, take a plunge in the 1,000-foot long natural spring-fed pool at Barton Springs, or explore the trendy cafes of the South Congress district. Later share your stories onboard the bus as we roll into the deep south.
Day 8 - Louisiana:
We get down-home and back-woods in the swamplands of the south today. Get some of that southern hospitality and flavor on an alligator-spotting boat tour though the bayou. If you see one, shout out "See ya later, alligator" 'cause we'll be heading out to New Orleans to sample some smooth jazz, hot cajun fare and the all-night entertainment of Bourbon Street. Your trip with the Green Tortoise will end tonight, but it doesn't have to! Hop on the Southern Crossing and continue onward with your friends!
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Flexible Itinerary means that we may alter an itinerary depending on weather, local events, etc. Although we make every attempt to run our trips as advertised, please be aware that the itinerary may change to give you the best trip possible.
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