Watch as sweeping shorelines, architectural icons and powerhouse cities combine.

Experience some of America’s favourite getaways with scenic coastal drives past picturesque villages and historic lighthouses.

More details about this trip here.

  • 14 days/13 nights
  • Chicago
  • 1723 miles / 2757 km

Stages of the trip

  1. Chicago

    Fly to Chicago, an architectural showcase on the shores of Lake Michigan. Upon arrival you’ll be transferred to your downtown hotel where you can spend the evening at your leisure. Alternatively, take a walk to the attractions of Navy Pier or follow the coast further down to Millennium Park, a collection of new-age art sculptures.

  2. Door County (2-3)

    Pick up your car on day two and start your drive to the picturesque villages, fruit farms and lighthouses that dot Door County’s craggy coastline. On the way, you’ll visit Milwaukee; once known exclusively as a brewing powerhouse it now features scenic river walks and Milwaukee Art Museum. Even those who’ve never opened a choke will appreciate the Harley Davidson museum. You’ll then arrive in Door County itself, the ‘Cape Cod of the Midwest’. With five state parks, ten lighthouses and over 300 miles of shoreline, this 75-mile long peninsula was named one of the top ten vacation destinations in North America. Spend the next two nights in a quaint village where shops and galleries are set in century-old barns, rustic log cabins and vintage homes.

    244 miles / 390 km

  3. Spring Green (5)

    Travel west to Spring Green, visiting Baraboo en route. Home to the Circus World Museum, it’s the former headquarters and winter home of the Ringling Brothers Circus. Now it’s the largest library of circus information in America.

    216 miles / 346 km

  4. Winona (5)

    This morning, visit two of Spring Green’s finest attractions. Frank Lloyd Wright, one of America’s finest architects, called the region home, building a spectacular architectural school at Taliesin that’s now open up to tours. It’s only matched by Alex Jordan’s House on the Rock; built in 1959 atop a rock column, it features the world’s largest carousel and interiors covered in unique artwork and contraptions. In the afternoon, you’ll continue on to Winona.

    119 miles / 190 km

  5. Minneapolis/St Paul (6)

    Follow the banks of the Mississippi River to Minneapolis and St. Pauls, two twin cities pretty much on top of each other. Walk the latter’s river trails, visit the historic Riverfront District or shop the day away at the Mall of America in neighbouring Bloomington. Your accommodation tonight is aboard a restored tugboat on the Mississippi itself.

    116 miles / 186 km

  6. Bayfield (7-8)

    Bayfield is a small Victorian town whose hilly streets and orchards act as the gateway to the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, a national park that encompasses 21 wilderness islands and over 12 miles of scenic peninsula shoreline. Set in Lake Superior’s western corner, the region is widely regarded as having the nation’s finest collection of historic lighthouses and with good reason. The Apostle Islands are rugged and windswept making for excellent kayaking and scenic boat trips with hiking equally popular.

    236 miles / 378 km

  7. Marquette (9)

    Cross the Upper Peninsula to Marquette, bordered to its north by Lake Superior and by Lake Michigan and Lake Huron to its southeast. Its extensive stretch of Great Lakes coastline features large tracts of state and national forest, cedar swamps, waterfalls and an almost European and Scandinavian feel. In local restaurants you’ll find the pasty, beloved by Cornish miners, and juustoa, a squeaky cheese brought to the US by the Finnish.

    206 miles / 330 km

  8. Mackinac Island (10-11)

    Drive onwards to St Igace to take the 20-minute passenger ferry to Mackinac islands where bicycles and horse drawn carriages are still the preferred modes of transport with cars banned since 1898. Explore on foot with a self-guided hike, rent a bicycle or just relax and enjoy the beauty of this charming island where 80% is state parkland.

    166 miles / 266 km

  9. Saugatuck (12)

    Head back to the mainland and continue to Saugatuck, one of Michigan’s favourite beachside towns. Here you’ll find a lively atmosphere complete with festivals and a range of outdoor recreation, including fishing, golf and boat cruises. You’ll also enjoy its thriving arts community evident in galleries and boutiques, all on the shores of Lake Michigan.

    279 miles / 446 km

  10. Chicago (13)

    Return to Chicago to drop off your hire car and board your overnight flight back to the UK.

    141 miles / 226 km