Autumn colors along the Hudson River Valley form the backdrop to this popular cruise. Optional excursions include visits to Olana—the magnificent Persian-style home of Hudson River School painter Frederic Church—and Springwood, home of Franklin D. Roosevelt. Other highlights include options to visit Eleanor Roosevelt’s Val-Kill, the Rockefeller’s Kykuit mansion, Lyndhurst, one of America’s finest Gothic Revival mansions and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.
- Pricing from
- Trip Type
- Closer to Home, Individual Travel Tour
- Departure Dates
- Oct 3, 2020 - Oct 10, 2020
- day 1
New York City, New York Grand Hyatt New York
Welcome to one of the world’s most famous and exciting cities. Broadway, Times Square, the Empire State Building, and Central Park are just some of the celebrated spectacles this bustling city has to offer. Giovanni da Verrazano was the first European to glimpse Manhattan Island in 1524, but the area was not explored until Henry Hudson arrived in 1609.
- day 2
New York City | Embark ship | Cruise the Hudson River American Star
Featured Excursion: Welcome to New York City! This morning, experience the sights, sounds and incredible history of this extraordinary city during a narrated tour. Along the way, your guide, a native New Yorker, provides personal insights into life in New York City. Pause at the World Trade Center Memorial to view the poignant reflective pools, twin pools that honor the lives lost and the sacrifices made by the citizens of New York City. Along the pools’ edges are bronze panels inscribed with the names of every person who died in the 2001 attack as well as the names of the six people killed in the 1993 bombing. (Moderate)
Transfer and embark your first-class river ship. Enjoy lunch on board and become familiar with the ship’s layout and many amenities. Set sail from New York’s metropolitan area and begin your exciting cruise to the Hudson River region. Surrounded by the Catskill Mountains on the western shore and the Taconic and Berkshire Hills to the east, the Hudson River is rich in both history and beauty. The cities and towns along the river date back to Dutch and English rule and feature some of the most magnificent architecture in America. When dusk arrives, settle into a rocking chair on the sun deck and watch a glorious sunset over serene river vistas. Gather for a Welcome Reception this evening.
- day 3
The United States Military Academy at West Point offers visitors the opportunity to walk on the hallowed grounds once traversed by some of the nation’s greatest generals. Founded in 1802 by an act of Congress, the Academy has been of significant military importance to America and was considered by George Washington to be the most important military position in America. Its establishment as the United States Military Academy occurred when Thomas Jefferson signed legislation to that effect. Premium Excursion: West Point. Discover the fascinating campus of America’s most notable military academy, including a visit to the imposing Cadet Chapel, a superb example of Military Gothic architecture. Admire the property’s beautiful stained-glass windows and the world’s largest church organ. Walk through Trophy Point and other stunning areas of the campus. During your tour, learn about James McNeill Whistler’s time spent as a cadet and admire breathtaking vistas of the Hudson Valley. (Moderate)
- day 4
The scenic beauty of the Catskills has long been an inspiration to artists, writers, and naturalists who draw inspiration from its tranquil forests and expansive mountain landscapes. Explore the Hudson River School Art Trail, which includes the Thomas Cole National Historic Site in Catskill village, and sites like Kaaterskill Falls and Sunset Rock, which inspired 19th-century landscape painters. Premium Excursion: Olana. Tour the magnificent home of one of the most influential Hudson River School painters, Frederic Church. Olana, often called the most beautiful artist’s home in America, is built high on a hill, offering magnificent views of the Catskill Mountains, the Hudson River, and the Taconic Hills. Tour the house and grounds,
noting the richly decorated rooms, paintings, and collections. (Moderate)
Premium Excursion: Thomas Cole National Historic Site. Discover the world of the man who became the father of American landscape painting and founder of the Hudson River School of Art. Tour the house, viewing the historic rooms where the Cole family lived. Tour the 1815 Federal yellow-brick Main House and visit the historic rooms where the Cole family lived, including the West Parlor where Thomas Cole was married and the upstairs rooms where his children were born and where Cole died in 1848. (Moderate)
Premium Excursion: Hunter Mountain Scenic Skyride. The Scenic Skyride features a six-passenger chairlift that takes you in comfort to the 3,200-foot summit of Hunter Mountain. Revel in amazing views of the soaring peaks of the northern Catskills. On a clear day, you can also see the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts and the Green Mountains of Vermont in the distance! (Moderate)
- day 5
Albany | Troy
Albany is one of the oldest surviving settlements from the original 13 colonies and the longest continuously chartered city in the United States. The city was discovered by Henry Hudson in 1609 on a failed attempt to find an expedited passage to China for the Dutch East India Company. Today, the capital city of New York welcomes visitors with majestic architecture and grand views of the beautiful Hudson River Valley.
Premium Excursion: Historic Troy. Join a local historian for a walking tour of Troy. Witness the town’s Victorian architecture and learn how these remarkable structures are preserved over time. (Moderate)
Premium Excursion: Lock and Dam Cruise. Learn about the lock and dam system used on the Erie Canal, originally built to create a water route from New York City to the Atlantic Ocean to the Great Lakes. While on tour, gain insight into the trade season and steamboats. (Moderate)
Premium Excursion: Albany. Regarded as one of the oldest museums in the United States, the Albany Institute of History & Art is dedicated to collecting and preserving the history, art, and culture of Albany and the upper Hudson Valley. View the significant Hudson River School collection, which features over ninety paintings. Then visit the New York State Museum to see the Empire State Plaza Art Collection. The exhibition features work by 17 artists including Pollock, Kline, and Rothko. (Moderate)
- day 6
Kingston was settled in 1652 and is the third oldest settlement in the Dutch Colony, after Manhattan and Albany. Once the capital of New York, Kingston is located in an area of the Hudson River often referred to as “Millionaires Row,” replete with palatial estates and grand mansions built by wealthy New York businessmen as summer retreats. Due to Hyde Park’s natural beauty and proximity to the city, families such as the Astors and Vanderbilts built weekend homes nearby. The area is most famously known as the birthplace of U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and is the site of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, as well as his home, Springwood, a National Historic Site.
Featured Excursion: Hudson River Maritime Museum. This fascinating museum, founded in 1980, focuses on the preservation and research of artifacts related to the Hudson River. View exhibits about historic vessels, art and materials from the transportation industry while exploring the museum at your own pace. (Moderate)
Premium Excursion: Kingston Exploration. Discover historic Kingston, New York’s first capital, which was burned by the British in 1777. Visit the Old Dutch Church, founded in 1659, and view a hand-written letter from Washington. (Moderate)
Premium Excursion: Walkway Over the Hudson. Delight in breathtaking views while strolling over the Hudson on a covered bridge. Once a railroad path, the bridge has been transformed into the world’s longest, elevated pedestrian bridge. (Moderate)
Premium Excursion: Frances Loeb Art Center. Located on the campus of Vassar College, the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center is a teaching museum, major art repository and exhibition space. It is home to extraordinary exhibits of Greek and Egyptian sculptures, medieval and Renaissance art, Chinese ceramics, Buddhist art, antiquities, photography, collections from the 20th and 21th centuries, and more. While touring the facility, view the acclaimed galleries of the Hudson River School painters, which features art by Thomas Cole, Asher B. Durand, Jasper Cropsey and other leading artists. (Moderate)
Choose one of the following Signature excursions.
(Signature excursions must be booked before your departure.)
• Signature Excursion: FDR Home & Museum Tour. Travel to the Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site, one of the great historic homes of America, and take a guided tour of Springwood, a neo-Georgian house. The home is filled with memorabilia of the Roosevelt family, including an extensive display of the President’s paintings, his collection of political cartoons, and an impressive display of Chinese porcelain. Then explore the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum at your own pace on a self-guided tour. (Moderate)
• Signature Excursion: Vanderbilt Mansion. Vanderbilt Mansion is one of the region’s oldest Hudson River estates and is a remarkable example of a gilded-age country place. The estate represents the political, economic, social and cultural changes that occurred as America industrialized in the years following the Civil War. For nearly two centuries, this home has been the epicenter to the socially prominent and elite class of New Yorkers. Learn about the life of the privileged, from the Jazz Age through World War II. (Moderate)
• Signature Excursion: Val-Kill Cottage. Visit the notable Val-Kill Cottage, the beloved home of Eleanor Roosevelt. Once a furniture factory, it was here that she pursued her political and social interests. Following President Roosevelt’s death in 1945, Eleanor kept Val-Kill, purchasing the land from the Roosevelt estate and making Val-Kill her permanent home. She continued the tradition of casual entertaining, hosting world dignitaries such as Winston Churchill and Democratic Party politicians who came seeking her advice and
support, including presidential candidate John F. Kennedy. (Moderate)
Return to the boat and cruise to Sleepy Hollow.
- day 7
Sleepy Hollow can satisfy the curiosity of an outdoor enthusiast yearning for engaging paths, a nautical devotee seeking a conical lighthouse or a ghost hunter pursuing a headless horseman. This riverside village along the Hudson, immortalized in literature by Washington Irving’s legendary 1820 tale, is a picturesque treasure waiting to be explored.
Premium Excursion: Lyndhurst Mansion. Delight in a private visit to Lyndhurst, the Gothic Revival mansion designed by Alexander Jackson Davis in 1838. The property, which sits on a vast spread of 67 acres overlooking the Hudson River, features an extensive collection of Victorian decorative arts. (Moderate)
Premium Excursion: Washington Irving’s Sunnyside. Charming Sunnyside cottage, nestled along the Hudson River among woodland trees and plants, is the former estate of American author Washington Irving, the country’s first internationally recognized writer of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and other well-known works. While touring Sunnyside, bask in fabled anecdotes of Irving’s life and inspirations for his iconic literary characters. (Moderate)
Tonight, gather for a Farewell Reception and raise a toast to your fellow travelers to celebrate your Hudson River adventure.
- day 8
Depart for your home city
After breakfast, bid farewell to the Hudson River and disembark the ship in New York City. AHI FlexAir passengers traveling on flights that qualify for a group transfer and Land/Cruise Program passengers who have purchased seats on the group transfer depart for John F. Kennedy International Airport/LaGuardia Airport/Newark Liberty International
Airport for your return flights home. Passengers departing independently to the airport must disembark the ship by 8:30 a.m.
Everything you need to know about the tour
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