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This region of the US offers fantastic opportunities for pupils of all ages to discover the beauty, biodiversity, natural processes and a highly memorable Geography tour experience. Combining the city of San Francisco with the beauty of national parks and canyons, this tour allows students the opportunity to explore key geographical themes in both Human and Physical Geography.

Highlights:

  • San Francisco city tour
  • Pier 39
  • Alcatraz
  • Muir Woods
  • Yosemite National Park
  • Las Vegas
  • Grand Canyon

Your travel itinerary could look like...

Day 1

AM - Arrival

After your flight from the UK, settle into your hotel and the surrounding San Francisco area.

PM - Pier 39

Spend the evening on Pier 39 and try out the famous Clam Chowder! Get an early night after a tiring day, ready for your exciting time in this fascinating city.

Day 2

AM - Hop on Hop off tour

Start your day off by jumping on a Hop on Hop off bus tour. A great way to see the city, stopping at beautiful sites such as the palace of fine arts and driving across the golden gate bridge. With live commentary, you'll be guided through the city's most iconic sights and neighbourhoods, including Chinatown, North Beach, Fisherman's Wharf, Union Square, Civic Center, Haight Ashbury, and the Golden Gate Bridge.

PM - Twin Peaks and Alcatraz evening tour

Spend your afternoon hiking up Twin Peaks, to see the breath-taking views of the city. Standing over 900 feet above the city, these two hills offer hikers sweeping views of San Francisco's main sights. This is a great spot for giving an outdoor lesson on San Francisco’s earthquake prevention strategies.

In the evening, why not do an Alcatraz night tour? Depending on the ages of your students, this is a great chance to experience the many moods of Alcatraz Island with an evening visit. Enjoy the beauty of a sunset silhouetting the Golden Gate Bridge, experience a cell door demonstration, and hear compelling stories about the Island’s history and residents.

Day 3

AM - Muir Woods

Set your alarms for your morning excursion to Muir Woods to see the famous redwood trees. Just a 30 minute journey from the city, Muir Woods offers your students the opportunity to experience a fascinating ecosystem and observe the wide ranging diversity of the fauna and flora. The old-growth redwood forest at Muir Woods is a showcase example of an ecosystem that elsewhere up and down coastal California has largely been lost to development and urban expansion. The redwood ecosystem at Muir Woods gives many populations of native animals the habitat they need to survive.

PM - Sonoma Valley 

After a morning exploring biodiversity and ecosystems, head to Sonoma Valley, where you can enjoy a bike tour of the vineyards. Here your students can witness the changing landscape and temperature of this area, in comparison to the city of San Francisco. Students have the opportunity to explore how the land is used to make produce and create an industry that is famous worldwide.

Day 4

Yosemite National Park

After an exciting time in the city it is now time to head to Yosemite National Park, an icon of majestic beauty. Here your group will stay for 2 nights at Yosemite Valley Lodge, a central location and perfect base camp for exploring the park. Your group will take part in a Nature Bridge program offered by the park. Nature Bridge environmental science programs in Yosemite National Park offer students the opportunity to learn hands-on science in one of the world’s most stunning geologic wonders. Outdoor science programs are led by experienced educators and customized to enhance your school’s curriculum. Students hike through the dramatic landscapes of Yosemite, explore ancient groves of giant sequoias, ski across snowy meadows, and challenge themselves to reach the tops of waterfalls. Focused on inquiry-based learning, students engage in field research projects and discover how humans and the environment are connected, from past to present.

Day 5

Yosemite National Park

Day 6

Death Valley

After an exciting time exploring Yosemite national park it is now time to head to Death Valley National Park where your students will experience a complete contrast in the arid and harsh environment of the land, when compared to Yosemite. Your group will have a ranger-led day field trip, which will uncover the wonders of the national park and allow for a day of exploration and connection to the land of extremes. On of the programs on offer is the ‘Shifting Sands: a destructive force in death valley’ field day - Students explore real-life examples of weathering, erosion and deposition in action at the Mesquite Sand Dunes and Golden Canyon.

Day 7

AM - Hoover Dam

Set your alarms for your morning trip to the Hoover Damn. At the Hoover Dam your group will take part in a guided power-plant tour which includes visiting the viewing platform overlooking a 30 foot diameter penstock – feel the vibration created by water rushing through the pipe. After your tour there will be time to have a look around the visitors center.

PM - Explore

After a very busy week, spend the afternoon at your leisure! This could be at the pool, head to Lake Mead for a picnic or explore the city of Las Vegas!

Day 8

AM - Grand Canyon

Get ready for a very memorable day at the Grand Canyon. One of the most spectacular geographical sites in the world, the Grand Canyon reveals millions of years of geological history in cross-section. Spend your day learning about the formation and features of the Grand Canyon with your expert guide.

PM - Departure

Head to the airport and get ready to return to the UK

Whats included

  • Return flights
  • Transfers as per itinerary
  • Activities and tours

Why not add

  • Silicon Valley
  • Antelope Canyon
  • Zion National Park
  • LA (this would require extra nights)

Why choose us

  • Fully accredited and financially protected
  • Knowledgeable and experienced staff
  • Regional Educational Development Execs to support all stages of the trip process
  • Customer portal and app for when you’re on the move
  • 24hr support

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