In Freedom's Footsteps: Philadelphia to Washington, DC

10 night tour - starting in Philadelphia, PA - ending in Washington, DC.

(Special offer - Book with us before the 28th February 2016 and receive a free pre or post nights stay making this an 11 night tour)

A Tauck World Discovery Tour.

Celebrating 90 years in the travel touring business, Tauck offer the ultimate in luxury touring. Throughout the years, ingenuity and innovation, plus a focus on customer servce and authentic experiences, have grown Tauck into one of the world's leading travel touring companies. On your tour you can expect an itinerary carefully designed to create an unforgetable experience, ensuring the finest hotels, luxury motorcoaches and highly experienced tour directors.

Crafted by Tauck and Ken Burns - Understanding the meaning of freedom and America’s story... One of our newest journeys, crafted by Tauck and filmmaker Ken Burns, explores the meaning of freedom – from the earliest settlement to the Colonial era to the Revolutionary War to building a Republic. Discover the nation’s economic expansion and industrial growth... 18th century social and religious movements... the Civil War... political diversity... and the defining themes that shaped the American experience century upon century. Travel back in time to walk in the footsteps of American history... In Philadelphia, ride a horse-drawn carriage along cobblestone streets, tour Independence Hall, and see the Liberty Bell. Visit the poignant battlefields of Gettysburg, where a storyteller reveals what it was like to be a civilian during the Civil War battle at a private Tauck dessert reception. Discover Jamestown's cultural influences through the eyes of an archaeologist... visit George Washington's home at Mount Vernon... meet 18th-century "residents" and dine at a colonial tavern in Colonial Williamsburg... and tour the spectacular monuments of America's capital. 

2016 Guaranteed departure dates:
April 22nd
May 02nd* & 13th
June 03rd & 13th
September 09th & 19th*
October 21st
* Small Group Departures – Select small group departures, averaging 24 Tauck guests.
View Itinerary Details

Day 1: Welcome to Philadelphia

Your Philadelphia to Washington DC tour begins at 6:00 PM at Sofitel Philadelphia. A transfer is included from Philadelphia International Airport to the Sofitel Philadelphia. America’s first capital city is a treasure trove of history; tomorrow you’ll be exploring some of the most famous sites from the earliest days of the US – you might consider arriving a day earlier to spend more time. Join us tonight for a welcome cocktail reception and dinner at your sophisticated hotel located in the city center near the Rodin Museum, City Hall, Liberty Place and other landmarks.

Lodging: Sofitel Philadelphia


Day 2: The Liberty Bell and the Constitution Center in Philadelphia

Around every corner of this city lies a piece of American history, as you’ll discover for yourself on a day immersing in historic Philadelphia. Tour Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence was signed, and view the Liberty Bell, before a horse-drawn carriage ride takes you through the historic district. At the National Constitution Center, see exhibits that focus on its history as well as the Constitution’s relevance today, and the award-winning multimedia presentation Freedom Rising. The rest of the day is free to spend as you please.

Lodging: Sofitel Philadelphia


Day 3: A day in Amish country and Gettysburg National Military Park 

Travel through rolling Pennsylvania farmland to Lancaster County for a guided tour that reveals the cultural traditions of the Amish, steeped in centuries past, and lunch. Continue on to Gettysburg National Military Park for a visit to the amazing interpretive center. The center includes a film, “A New Birth of Freedom,” narrated by Morgan Freeman; the massive Cyclorama painting, which literally surrounds visitors with a magnificent visual of the fury of Pickett’s Charge and brings vividly to life the sights and sounds of the battles that raged here on July 1-3, 1863; and the Gettysburg Museum of the American Civil War, featuring 12 exhibit galleries that contain artifacts and interactive displays. At our dessert reception after dinner this evening, a storyteller recounts the harrowing experience of civilians trapped in the town of Gettysburg during the ferocious fighting.

Lodging: The Gettysburg Hotel

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Gettysburg's battlefields, Harper's Ferry and the Blue Ridge Mountains 

A morning drive with a Gettysburg expert takes you through some of the battlefields – now eerily peaceful – viewing pivotal sites and hearing stories such as the defense of Little Round Top, the “Killer Angels” and the courage and futility of Pickett’s Charge. More than 50,000 men on both sides were killed, wounded or missing at Gettysburg; about 6,000 lie in the national cemetery here, which Lincoln dedicated with his famous address later that year. Travel on to Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, with a Ken Burns vignette that sets up your visit to the site of John Brown’s failed 1859 raid on the town’s federal arsenal, where the abolitionist was captured and most of his 21-man “army” were killed. Later, ride the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains along the gorgeous Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park; overnight at Big Meadows Lodge or Skyland Resort inside the park.

Lodging: Big Meadows Lodge/ Skyland Resort

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Exploring Monticello and Charlottesville                                 

The Civil War was fought in 10,000 places, the majority of them in the South; foraging armies swept across American farms and burned American towns, and homes became headquarters and hospitals. Travel today to Charlottesville for a visit to author, statesman, scientist and third U.S. President Thomas Jefferson’s beloved Monticello, the hilltop house he designed on the principles of Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio. As you explore the house, plantation and grounds, you’ll observe that the realities of plantation life did not always fit comfortably with the founding father’s principles of equality and liberty. After lunch featuring colonial fare and servers in 18th-century period attire at the historic Michie Tavern, visit the University of Virginia’s landmark Rotunda and Grounds, described by its designer Thomas Jefferson as an “academical village.” You’ll end the afternoon with a Tauck Exclusive: a lively private presentation on “Slavery, the Plantation and the Civil War” by Dr. Leni Sorensen, scholar, living history interpreter, and African American Research Historian for the Thomas Jefferson Foundation at Monticello. Your day ends in Charlottesville; the evening is free to spend as you please, with dinner at leisure at the hotel.

Lodging: Omni Charlottesville Hotel

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Richmond and the historic colony of Jamestown

An in-depth view of the Civil War from various perspectives awaits in Richmond, once the Confederate capital. Begin the day with a Tauck Exclusive: meet with Richmond Civil War historian and author Mark Howell, who will share insights about the unique role of the Tredegar Iron Works, little-known facts about “industrial slavery,” and the impact of the Civil War on this center for armaments production in Virginia and the variety of cultures and values in pre-war Richmond. Next, you’ll gain further insights into Union, Confederate and African American viewpoints when you visit Historic Tredegar and the Tredegar Iron Works, the Confederacy’s industrial heart. Following lunch at a Richmond bistro, travel to Jamestown, the first permanent English settlement in the Americas – begun in 1607, before the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts. You’ll get a behind-the-scenes look from an archaeologist interpreter – discover the many cultural influences that shaped this colony, including Powhatan, English and African, when you visit the site. You’ll also visit the Archaearium, where more than 2,000 artifacts are on display. They focus on the 1607-1624 Virginia Company period at Jamestown – twenty years of excavations have led to new understandings of the first English settlers, their relationships with the Virginia Indians, and how they shaped a new American society. Today’s final destination is Colonial Williamsburg, whose cobblestone streets and buildings have been restored to the way they looked when the city was Virginia’s Colonial capital. As you step back in time during your two-night stay, enjoy dinner this evening at an 18th-century style tavern in Colonial Williamsburg.

Lodging: Williamsburg Lodge

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Spend a day in 18th-century Colonial Williamsburg

Restored to its 18th-century glory and inhabited by interpreters in period dress living its 18th-century lifestyle, Colonial Williamsburg is yours to explore as you please today. Discover life in days gone by as you step back in time to encounter local residents, from artisans and tradespeople to militiamen and ordinary citizens. Visit authentically restored buildings such as the Governor’s Palace, Raleigh Tavern, Bruton Parish Church, and other places including  Colonial homes. You’ll enjoy activities and demonstrations throughout the day in Colonial Williamsburg.

Lodging: Williamsburg Lodge


Day 8: Explore Mt. Vernon and on to Washington, DC                                 

You’ll travel from Williamsburg this morning to the magnificent Mount Vernon estate of America’s first president, George Washington. Overlooking the Potomac River, the setting couldn’t be more spectacular; explore the state-of-the-art interactive museum, the 18th-century mansion and landscaped grounds. You’ll have a late afternoon arrival in Washington, DC, capital city of the US; dine tonight at a local restaurant.

Lodging: The Willard Washington D.C.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: A day in Washington, DC

The relationship of journalism and politics, explored in-depth in Ken Burns’s recent film “The Roosevelts,” underlies much of Washington DC’s 225+ year history. Today you’ll get perspectives on both, beginning with a sightseeing tour this morning that features views of iconic Washington sights such as the White House, Capitol Hill, the National Mall, the Washington Monument and the Jefferson Memorial. On a visit to the Lincoln Memorial, you’ll have an opportunity to see the poignant memorials to those who served in World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War. Late morning arrive at Newseum, a captivating museum featuring interactive exhibits that take you behind-the-scenes to explore everything from current events to the role of a free press in a free society – how news affects our shared experience of historic moments. Spend the remainder of the day pursuing your own interests in Washington, DC.

Lodging: The Willard Washington D.C.


Day 10: Exclusive – Inside the National Archives

First up today, a Tauck Exclusive – early admission to the Rotunda of the National Archives for a private viewing of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, with welcome comments by a National Archives insider. Then go behind the scenes with an archival researcher to learn how modern archival techniques preserve both great documents and stories of individual Americans. The afternoon is free; you’ll have time at the National Archives to explore as you please, or perhaps visit one of the many museums on the National Mall – or return to Newseum. Tonight, a memorable week concludes with a farewell reception and dinner.

Lodging: The Willard Washington D.C.

Breakfast, Dinner

Day 11: Journey home or extend your stay

Tour ends: Washington, DC. Fly home anytime. A transfer is included from The Willard to Ronald Reagan National Airport or Dulles International Airport; please allow a minimum of two hours for flight check-in at the airport. 


Your Tauck Tour Highlights

Filmed narratives, exclusively produced for Tauck by filmmakers Ken Burns & Dayton Duncan, feature new insights based on themes from their films, from the Civil War to national parks

TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Early admission & behind-the-scenes experience at the National Archives
TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Private presentation on slavery & plantation life by Dr. Leni Sorensen
TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Private talk with Civil War historian and author Mark Howell

An archaeologist’s insights into Jamestown, first permanent English settlement in the Americas
Airport transfers upon arrival and departure as noted
22 meals (10 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 7 dinners); service charges, gratuities to local guides, admission fees, taxes and porterage

Your Hotels....

Nights 1 - 2 : Sofitel Philadelphia - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - Tauck Guests enjoy complimentary Internet access in guest rooms!

Sofitel Philadelphia blends French elegance with American style providing a refined environment in the city center, just minutes from historic attractions. This sophisticated downtown hotel is conveniently situated near the Kimmel Center and Rodin Museum. Delight in the architectural highlights of the hotel, such as a geometric lobby floor design inspired by Shaker quilts and crafted from seven types of stone. Then explore art and culture nearby at impressive exhibits including The Barnes Foundation's world-class art collection. Sofitel Philadelphia's hotel rooms reflect contemporary French and American style. Each spacious room averages 370 square feet and is equipped withluxurious feathertop and duvet sleep system – SoBed, and French bath amenities. Discover fine dining with the delicious cuisine of Liberte Urban Chic Lounge, a stylish restaurant and bar that brings back a bygone era with contemporary French-inspired food served in one of the city's loveliest settings.

Night 3 : The Gettysburg Hotel - Gettysburg, Pennsylvania - Tauck Guests enjoy complimentary Internet access in guest rooms!

The Gettysburg Hotel witnessed the three-day battle in 1863 that turned the tide of the Civil War; in the house across the street, President Lincoln honed his famous address; and in 1955, the hotel served as a temporary White House for President Eisenhower as he recovered from a heart attack. Located in the center of the town’s historic district, in walking distance of the battlefield, the Gettysburg Hotel has been carefully restored to maintain its 19th-century grace while offering modern amenities, including an outdoor rooftop swimming pool, a fitness center, a tavern, and restaurant offering traditional fine dining in a casually elegant setting.

Night 4 : Big Meadows Lodge/ Skyland Resort - Shenandoah National Park, Virginia

The historic Big Meadows Lodge, located at mile 51.2 on Skyline Drive, is named for a large grassy meadow near the lodge where deer often graze. The main lodge was built with stones cut from the Massanutten Mountain in 1939 by the CCC and mountain laborers. The interior structure of the lodge, including the paneling, is made from native chestnut trees, which are now virtually extinct. The main lodge has 29 cozy rooms and was placed on the National Register of Historic Places on April 28, 1997. The Spottswood Dining Room, New Market Taproom and Craft Shop are located in the main lodge building. Skyland Resort, located at mile 41.7 on Skyline Drive, was founded in 1888 by George Freeman Pollock Jr., who chose the perfect spot for his summer retreat at 3,680 feet, with breathtaking views of the Shenandoah Valley and cool mountain breezes. Skyland Resort encompasses 36 acres in the Shenandoah National Park with 28 buildings situated on 16 of those acres along the crests and wooded areas. Rustic and charming, the hi-tech world is left behind with an opportunity to immerse in the wonderful tranquility of nature.

Night 5 : Omni Charlottesville Hotel - Charlottesville, Virginia - Tauck Guests enjoy complimentary Internet access in guest rooms!

Adjacent to the historic downtown Pedestrian Mall, the Omni Charlottesville Hotel blends the area’s unique history with modern luxury. You can enjoy spectacular views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, historic Charlottesville or the beautifully landscaped mall or atrium area. Relax in newly-renovated guest room accommodations featuring contemporary comfort and a host of amenities designed to make your visit unforgettable. This luxury hotel features a stunning, seven-story glassed-in atrium containing a lobby lush with greenery. Each guest room reflects a delicate balance of historical reverence and contemporary luxury.  Decorated in traditional style, they welcome you with a soothing palette of gold, yellow, sage and forest green. The Point, overlooking the Downtall Mall, features fun, casual dining in the garden atmosphere of the atrium – and The Pointe Patio is the perfect place for outdoor dining, in season.

Nights 6 - 7 : Williamsburg Lodge - Williamsburg, Williamsburg - Tauck Guests enjoy complimentary Internet access in guest rooms!

The recently completed renovation of the Williamsburg Lodge presents the ambiance of a southern family home—furnishings are inspired by art from the nearby Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum. One of the two original hotels envisioned by John D. Rockefeller, the property has now matured to comprise eight buildings, interconnected by sheltered, brick-paved walkways – offering guests a generous helping of southern hospitality with impeccable service. Williamsburg Lodge was one of John D. Rockefeller, Jr.’s original Colonial Williamsburg hotels and it is very close to Williamsburg’s famous Historic Area. Comfortable guest rooms provide cable / satellite TV, in-room safe, coffee maker and iron / ironing board. A wide variety of recreational facilities, including golf courses and tennis courts, are shared with the nearby Williamsburg Inn. The new restaurant serves cuisine with contemporary southern and Chesapeake influences.

Nights 8 - 10 : The Willard Washington D.C. - Washington, DC - Tauck Guests enjoy complimentary Internet access in guest rooms!

History and luxury go hand-in-hand at The Willard Washington D.C., an integral part of Washington life during the Civil War – and of Washington lore for over a century and a half. Not only has this Pennsylvania Avenue landmark hosted every U.S president since 1850, but Lincoln himself lived here for ten days before moving into the White House two blocks away; his bill is proudly posted in the hotel’s gallery. The Willard’s guest list has included Charles Dickens, P.T. Barnum, Buffalo Bill Cody, Walt Whitman and Julia Ward Howe. Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote his “I Have a Dream” speech here; Mark Twain penned two books while staying here. And the term “Lobbyist” originally referred to the Willard lobby, where President U.S. Grant enjoyed brandy and cigars while political operatives promoted their agendas. The phrase “I’m staying at the Willard” speaks volumes...

Tour Only Cost: All prices quoted below are per adult person, per tour in British Pounds (GBP)

Departure Dates

Single Twin/Double Triple Quad
Small group departures* 2nd May 2016 & 19th September 2016 £4400 £3475 £3237 Please call
All other departures in 2016 £3800 £2990 £2775 Please call
Special offer - Book with us before the 28th February 2016 and receive a free pre or post nights stay making this an 11 night tour
* Small Group Departures – Select small group departures are available for certain departures, averaging just 24 guests – Please see tour costs above for dates and prices.
Special Single Savings - On select departures you save upto £130 on the single room prices, specific dates apply - Please contact us for more information.
Note: All departures stay at the Williamsburg Lodge in Colonial Williamsburg, for an additional £190 per person (Double), or £370 (Single), you may change and reserve a room at the Williamsburg Inn (limited availability).
Not included in your tour cost:
Flights – we can package your tour with flights at very competitive airfares using our airline partners. Please call us to discuss the best airline for your itinerary.
Pre or post accommodation - If you want to extend your stay at the start or the end of your escorted tour or add another destination to your booking please call us and we will be happy to provide a quote.
Meals, other than those listed in the itinerary.
The customary gratuities for the Tour Director and local drivers are not included.
There are many questions and considerations you might have when planning an escorted tour with Tauck Tours. For more information please click here.


Please call us on FREEPHONE 0800 0336 335 or EMAIL us we are open 7 days a week.

We will be happy to answer any questions, check the availability of your tour, offer a quote for flights and any pre or post nights you would like to add.

When you are ready to go ahead with the booking, a non-refundable deposit of 10% will be due at time of booking or the full balance if you are due to travel within 8 weeks.