1. Jackson/Yellowstone/Grand Canyon: Self-Driving Audio Tour
Start by downloading the Action Tour Guide app, which will function as your personal tour guide, audio tour, and map. Purchase one tour per car, not per person. Everyone listens together! Note: This 142+ miles-long tour covers the essentials of Yellowstone National Park in 5-6 hours. Your adventure through Yellowstone begins at one of the five entrances and follows the Grand Loop around the entire park. Here are some of the incredible points of interest along that massive figure eight: Journey through the West Thumb, one of the largest geyser basins in the park. Watch the jets of boiling water bursting from the earth and hear the geological science behind this phenomenon. Peer deep into the Abyss Pool--if you dare--and listen to accounts of how fishermen used to cook their catch in the Fisherman’s Cone! Then, we’ll turn your eyes to the sky and tell you everything you need to know about birdwatching in Yellowstone. As you drive past Shoshone Lake, one of the park’s best-kept secrets, we’ll fill you in on Sacagawea’s connection to the park and give you the real story you probably haven’t heard. Then it’s on to the world-famous Old Faithful, where you’re guaranteed to see a spectacular show. We’ll also take you to all the other geysers in the area, which are as impressive as their famous cousin. After that, try not to let your jaw drop too low when you see Grand Prismatic, the largest hot spring in the United States and the most colorful. We’ll give you a glimpse into the microscopic life that thrives in the extreme heat and explain how they brew beer and help solve crimes. No, really! Next, we’ll stop by the Fountain Paint Pot, the most colorful mud field you’ll ever see, and reveal the secrets of Yellowstone’s “Zone of Death.” Then it’s on to the tremendous Gibbon Falls and the Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone’s hottest basin. We’ll hear about how this place offers a window into the earliest life on Earth and the men who first charted this fascinating land. Cross Yellowstone’s Golden Gate Bridge to reach the Mammoth Hot Springs, the most accessible place to spot a herd of elk. As you continue toward a pair of staggering waterfalls, we’ll put your mind at ease about the still-active supervolcano directly beneath you and let you enjoy the views. Check out a tree so old it’s turned entirely to stone, then hear about President Theodore Roosevelt’s eventful trip to Yellowstone. If you’ve come to see wildlife, Lamar Valley is one of your best bets. We’ll point you to a place where you can spot elk, bison, and maybe even grizzlies or wolves! Then, visit Yellowstone’s Grand Canyon--as long as you don’t fear heights! Finally, relax by the shores of the enormous Yellowstone Lake and watch for moose who come to drink from its waters. Yellowstone has all this and more within a single park, but you must see it to understand how awe-inspiring this landscape can be. So what are you waiting for?