Get on the right track with this epic rail adventure, taking you through the USA’s Northeast from Boston to Washington, D.C. If you’re in need of good vibes, history, culture, retail therapy, and more, look no further than the ‘Iconic Cities & Beyond’ itinerary.
The “Iconic Cities And Beyond” itinerary is rail-y awesome! Plug in to your fave playlist and watch the world from the window seat as you journey through Washington, D.C., Pennsylvania, New York and Massachusetts.
This trip will give you a well-deserved dose of fun and frolics as you explore numerous museums, national parks, restaurants, beautiful harbours and bustling city squares.
And because you’ll be going by train, you don’t have to worry about arguing over poor map reading skills or that cheeky afternoon tipple!
So the only question left to ask, is “are you ready to rock ‘n’ rail?”
Explore all of Brand USA’s 31 Amazing Self Drive Road Trip itineraries here.
Iconic Cities And Beyond: Route Highlights
1. Boston, Massachusetts
Welcome to Boston.
Although you might feel like you know about Boston’s rich history and its role in the Revolutionary War, you may not be aware of the world-class museums, numerous universities, and abundant shopping opportunities this cool city has to offer.
Choose to start your city adventure on one of The Freedom Trail’s 16 historic stops, including the famous Old North Church, Paul Revere House or Faneuil Hall Marketplace. With over 100 shops and pushcarts as well as 50 restaurants, pubs, and food vendors you can shop til’ you drop and then eat your way back to life again!
You might also choose to spend a day marvelling at some of the Museum of Fine Arts’ 450,000-plus works of art or the Museum of Science’s eye-opening exhibits. For something a little more intimate, check out the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum or the Nichols House Museum.
Shimmy and shake your way across the Charles River on the Longfellow Bridge or take the T to Cambridge, where you’ll find charming neighbourhoods, fine dining, museums, unique shopping experiences and the ivy-trimmed campus of Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Both institutions offer tours – so you can totally nerd out if you wish.
2. New York City, New York
- AMTRAK RAIL TIME: 345kms: 4 hours train time
Oh, New York, New York. Where to even start? Filling four days with exciting things to do in New York City is ridiculously easy.
No trip to the Big Apple is complete without watching a show on Broadway, so let’s start there. If you wern’t organised enough to pre-book tickets, check out the TKTS booth in Times Square and you might be able to bag yourself a deal.
Stretch your mind at enriching museums both large, Metropolitan Museum of Art or Museum of Modern Art, and small, The Frick Collection or Morgan Library and Museum, or stretch your wallet at one, two, or all of the dreamy shopping districts NYC has to offer.
Check out the world-famous panoramic views of midtown Manhattan from the Empire State Building’s open-air observatory or from Top of the Rock at Rockefeller Center, or head to One World Observatory’s 100th floor for stunning views of the harbour and the entire city.
For culture, immerse yourself in the ethnic and cultural diversity of New York’s five boroughs. Foodies will adore the Greek, Russian, Chinese, and Italian food from Queens to Brooklyn to Staten Island, where you can wave to the Statue of Liberty on your way to dinner.
Sports fans can catch a New York Yankees baseball game, a U.S. Open Tennis match, watch the New York Knicks or NY Mets play basketball, the New York Rangers play hockey, take in a New York Islanders hockey game, or a Brooklyn Nets basketball game. Seriously, there’s so much to see.
3. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania > Washington, D.C.
- AMTRAK RAIL TIME: 152kms: 1 hour 10 mins train time
Get ready to fall in LOVE with Philadelphia and all of its icons. A good place to start is at the famous LOVE statue, followed by a trip to the “Rocky Steps” at the Museum of Art, and topped off with a Philly cheesesteak sandwich.
Visit Independence Hall National Historical Park, home to the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, and be amazed by the astounding collection of museums, artistic venues, and historical attractions at the Constitution Centre.
Art connoisseurs can view classical works by Renoir, Cézanne, and Picasso at the Barnes Foundation or at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. History buffs will get excited at the Ben Franklin Museum, and musical enthusiasts can sing the wonderfully catchy songs from ‘Hamilton’ the entire day!
For food and entertainment, Philadelphia’s Old City district, King of Prussia Mall, and Reading Terminal Market are must-visits. If it’s fresh air you’re craving, take a stroll around Longwood Gardens or Fairmount Park, or enjoy al fresco dining at Rittenhouse Square.
4. Washington, D.C.
- AMTRAK RAIL TIME: 225kms: 1 hour 45 mins train time
Like everywhere on this wander-full itinerary, there’s a lot to see in Washington, D.C. so let’s start with a must-do trip to the National Mall. This lush, grassy national park encompasses the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, the U.S. Capitol, and more.
Head Northwest to explore Georgetown University and the lively shops and cafes that surround it. This is a great place to people-watch. Then, step back in time to the 18th and 19th centuries by discovering the charming historic district of Old Town Alexandria.
Exhausted from making all the memories? No worries, you can sleep on the train!
Download the complete ‘Iconic Cities And Beyond‘ itinerary here!
Get the Road Trip Playlist
This playlist will have you hittin’ the repeat button, with legends such as Elton John, Alicia Keys, Frank Sinatra, DJ Jazzy Jeff, and The Fresh Prince singing in your ears.
Boasting songs that summarise these intoxicating cities beautifully, you’ll be itching to explore 27/4, because who needs sleep, anyway?
Agents: Download, Escape and Explore GoUSA TV
GoUSA TV is a free premier travel entertainment channel. Watch full episodes, documentaries and films, told from the diverse perspectives of real people across America.
Discover the Queens area of New York City through the diversity of the Latinx diaspora in the series, Americanos, available on GoUSA TV. Explore how Latinx culture brings American cities to life through the stories of those who embrace their roots and shape the future.
With more than 400 authentic and short format videos featuring destinations from all 50 states, 5 territories, and the District of Columbia, there’s never been a better time to get online and enjoy some incredible travel entertainment!
Available for download in the App or Play store and on Apple TV.
More info here.
Agents: Join the USA Discovery Program
The USA Discovery Program is Brand USA’s official trade training platform for the USA. The Iconic Cities & Beyond itinerary features two destinations with training badges.
Get clicking and complete your Philadelphia and Massachusetts badges and skill up in a fun and interactive way.
Click here to register and get all the knowledge for the USA.
PLUS! Design your own Road Trip with the USA TRIP PLANNER
The Visit USA Trip Planner is an amazing (and free!) tool that matches your personal travel preferences and style.
With over 230 million data points including the best places & times to visit, reviews and hidden gems, this is one smart piece of travel tech.
This little travel genius optimises your itinerary to minimise travel time, checks when attractions are open and even recommends how much time to spend at each stop off. Brilliant!
Finally, it lets you share & collaborate with your fellow road trippers and is easy to add or revise points of interest as you go.
Find out more: Trip-Planner.VisitTheUSA.com
Get all the tools on Brand USA’s TRAVEL TRADE SITE
From Trip Planners to Itineraries and the USA Discovery Program and Destination information, Brand USA’s Travel Trade Site for agents has you covered.
Hero image – Amtrak Empire Service train approaches the Anthony’s Nose tunnel near the Bear Mountain Bridge in Cortlandt, New York.
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