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The Guided Tours Every Retired American Should Take

Download our free Preparing for Retirement eBook to learn more about how shaping your finances with insurance products like annuities can help you do more exploring in a retirement that works for you.

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tourist group

One of the best parts of retirement is having the time to do the things you couldn’t squeeze in during your working years—like visiting all of those places across America the beautiful that you’ve always wanted to see.

If you’re one of the approximately 49 percent of current workers[1] who’d like to travel during retirement, here are a few valuable tips to keep in mind.


1. Factor it into your retirement plan. That way, you’ll be sure that the money will take you where you want to go.

2. Be flexible. Since you’ll be able to travel when you want, you can take trips during off-peak times when prices tend to be lower.

3. Save yourself the headache by working with tour companies. Many will handle all the planning and offer pre-set travel packages, often with a bundle discount.

4. Study, study, study. Compare prices and options. Read reviews on social media sites. Talk to others who have the same interests.

5. Prioritize. Make a list of places you’d like to see and include a cost-to-importance value for each one.


Take the guided tour option. It takes the guesswork out of things. It keeps you from having to find your way around an unfamiliar place. It allows you to sit back and absorb while someone who knows more about the location tells you about it. Here are some guided tours that can help you see the wonders from sea to shining sea:


See the beauty and grandeur of our National Parks. The United States has 59 designated national parks[2], and numerous travel companies offer guided vacations of these outdoor wonderlands.


1. If you enjoy the southwest and its beautiful landscape, Globus Journeys[3] offers an eight-day Canyon Country Adventure[4] eight-day Canyon Country Adventure starting in Sedona, Ariz. and ending in Las Vegas. You’ll travel through Grand Canyon National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park and Zion National Park as well as Lake Powell and Monument Valley.

2. Cosmos[5] travel company offers an eight-day Alaskan Adventure[6], includes wildlife viewing, a riverboat cruise, and travel on the Alaska railroad. The tour begins in Fairbanks and travels to Nenana, Denali National Park, Anchorage, and Seward.

3. Want to get a little exercise while you roam? Wilderness Voyageurs[7] offers multiple bike tours including the Gettysburg & the Civil War bike tour[8] . The four-day “bike through history” cycles through Antietam National Battlefield, Gettysburg National Military Park, South Mountain State Park, Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park, Harpers Ferry National Historical Park, and Lincoln Highway Heritage Corridor. You don’t have to be an expert cyclist to take the tour—it’s rated for beginner to intermediate riders.


Take a walk, or ride, through our nation’s past. Washington, D.C is rich in history. With so many sites to see, guided tours can help you see more. Many companies offer tours[9] of the celebrated city, including:

1. Historic Tours of America[10] has sightseeing via the Old Town Trolley and D.C. Ducks. They also offer four guided tours: Monuments of Moonlight, Education, Sunset and Arlington Cemetery.

2. USA Guided Tours[11] boasts multiple tour options, including customized ones. Pre-arranged tours include the Best of D.C. VIP Tour (eight hours); Discover D.C. Tour (six hours); Washington Monument and D.C. Highlights Tour (five hours); Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center tour (five hours); D.C. at Dusk Tour (three hours); and the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum Tour (two hours).

3. Capital River Cruise[12] offers spectacular views of the Washington D.C. area from a riverboat along the Potomac River. Cruises last 45 minutes and include historical narration.


Don’t rock the boat, but definitely ride in one. There are countless rivers, bays, and lakes worth visiting throughout the U.S. Here are three popular cruise tours you might want to consider:

1. Alcatraz Cruises[13], San Francisco: A one-and-a-half-mile boat ride across the San Francisco Bay, Alcatraz Island was home to America’s most notorious criminals between 1934 and 1963. Now it’s a popular tourist destination, offering multiple types of tours, including garden, cellhouse audio, evening, and guided walking tours.

2. Maid of the Mist[14], Niagara Falls, New York: A boat tour of the famous Niagara Falls, Maid of the Mist is a seasonal experience (May through October) along the Niagara River. The boat gives you an up-close experience with the refreshing mist of 600,000 gallons of water that fall every second. Don’t forget your poncho.

3. River Cruise, Chicago: When you’re in the Windy City, relax aboard one of the cruise boats to learn about the city’s architecture and history while motoring down the Chicago River. A few companies offer tours including the Chicago Architecture Foundation[15], Wendella Boats[16], and Chicago’s FirstLady[17].

If seeing our beautiful country will help you have a more beautiful retirement, be sure to factor your travel aspirations into your retirement financial strategy. Download our free Preparing for Retirement eBook to learn more about how shaping your finances with insurance products like annuities can help you do more exploring in a retirement that works for you.

download ebook

By contacting Stratton & Company, you may receive information about the purchase of insurance.