That’s the problem with Contiki in the USA, it’s just a full day of driving, get drunk at night and spend the rest of the day either hungover on the bus to the next destination or hungover at the hotel.
I think the Contiki style of tour is better suited to Europe where you stay in hotel closer to the action and there’s less driving.
There used to be a good company called Trek America that offered camping or budget lodging tours staying national parks, small group atmosphere and seeing a lot of cool places up close, but they went bust during Covid.
Intrepid and G Adventures offer a few of those style trips but not as wide a range as Trek America had.
I reckon if you’ve got 3 weeks instead of doing coast to coats just limit yourself to California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Arizona and Utah. You can see all the national parks and Vegas. From Southern Utah/Grand Canyon and Colorado Rockies there’s nothing even remotely interesting until you hit Washington DC. Texas is boring, the south is, errr the south, Florida an overhyped tourist trap and New Orleans overrated. There’s a reason it’s called “fly over country”……..
Yeah good calls.
I am glad I did a contiki, as I went to a lot of places I will never visit, good and bad. Places like Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Durango, Amarillo and even the Grand Canyon.
But yeah looking back I feel there was just so much time wasted on buses. I want to get back ASAP.