An Introduction to Thanksgiving in the USA


Although it isn’t a celebration we hear much about here in the UK, across the pond it is marked with huge events that are enjoyed by millions. If you are looking forward to enjoying the best of Thanksgiving during a luxury USA tour with us, here’s our guide on how to enjoy this famous holiday in the best way.

The history behind the day

The celebrations of Thanksgiving go back hundreds of years, with the first recorded in Plymouth – now present day Massachusetts – in 1621. A huge feast, the celebrations were prompted following a good harvest, and the traditions of this day were carried by Puritans and Pilgrims who began emigrating from England.

Celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November, it has been dedicated as an annual tradition in the United States since 1863, and events and celebrations have been steadily growing to offer an immersive experience for all.

The Food

One of the biggest aspects of Thanksgiving is the chance to eat beautiful food, which only makes sense for its roots as a harvest celebration. Crafting such a meal for yourself will be out of the question during your all-inclusive holiday with Scenic Tours; restaurants all over the country offer the perfect replica of the Thanksgiving meal without you going to any of the effort.

In terms of the food on offer, the usual staple is:

      - roast turkey

      - pumpkin pie

      - corns

      - cranberry sauce

However, the multitude of other dishes served alongside mean ultimately that it’s a day when nobody goes hungry.

If you are looking for a Thanksgiving celebration with a difference, Albert’s Restaurant in San Diego Zoo promises to be an experience like no other. Set inside the heart of the city’s world-famous zoo, Albert’s offers an open-air dining experience that overlooks a private waterfall.

While Albert’s offers comprehensive dining options throughout the year, they are offering a special Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday 27 November. Among the highlights on the menu include the Traditional Carved Turkey Platter and the Pumpkin Mousse.

When we got in touch with Albert’s Restaurant, here are some of the reasons why they think their venue is worth a visit for those on a Scenic Tours holiday:

“We would consider this restaurant to be an unmissable inclusion in any visit to San Diego for its unique setting in one of the world's great zoos. In addition, money raised through the purchase of food supports the non-profit San Diego Zoo Global and its conservation mission.”

The celebrations

As well as the great food, Thanksgiving is also renowned for its raft of themed events which are enjoyed across America.

Among the biggest is the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade. Having taken place annually since 1924, the event sees millions of people line the streets of the Big Apple to admire a multitude of intricately designed floats. When we got in contact with the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade, here are a few words on why they think the event cannot be missed:

“Every year nearly 4 million fans gather along the streets of New York City and another 50 million more watch in homes across the United States, joining with family and friends to ring in the start of the holiday season with Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. This really is an event like no other.  It's not just a march down an avenue; it's a march through history. Pop culture's most recognizable characters take to the sky as giant balloons or roll down the streets on fantasy filled floats, student marching bands perform for millions of spectators alongside some of today's brightest stars, and let's not forget the big guy himself - the one and only Santa Claus, who leaves behind a trail of happiness as he makes his way down to Macy’s Herald Square.”

To enjoy the country’s oldest Thanksgiving Parade you have to head to Philadelphia, with the Dunkin’ Donuts Thanksgiving Parade entertaining people since 1920. Featuring marching bands, balloons, floats and local celebrities, it’s one of the biggest and best events on the city calendar and would offer a great experience for those on our Ultimate USA Tour.

San Fran Turkey Trot

While many look forward to Thanksgiving for a chance to feast, others see it as an opportunity to embody a new routine of fitness and a good example of such events include the San Francisco Turkey Trot.

While it’s unlikely that you will want to enter such an event during your luxury USA tour with us, the opportunity to come along and support the runners offers a truly authentic experience into the spirit of Thanksgiving. Taking place in Golden Gate Park, there will be three different events on offer: the five-mile Turkey Trail Run, the three-mile Pilgrim Promenade walk and the 100M Gobbler’s Chase for the children. 

Image Credit: Macy's, Inc.

This content was written by Ashley Collins. Please feel free to visit my Google+ Profile to read more stories.