The Grand Canyon is an amazing natural wonder and a great place to spend the day. If you're planning to go, I have some ideas for activities while you're there.
Tours Of The Grand Canyon
If you are interested in a day trip, you can tour the Grand Canyon by helicopter, airplane, motor coach, and smooth-water raft. Each one of these choices is great fun.
An astonishing five million visitors flock to the Grand Canyon National Park each year, and this makes it the second most visited National Park in America. Most of them arrive in the summer, and many set out for the canyon from Las Vegas or Phoenix, Williams, or Flagstaff, Arizona.
Grand Canyon tours on helicopters are always popular activities. People starting their tour in Vegas choose the West Rim as a destination because the South Rim is beyond the range of the tour helicopters. Another departure point for the helicopter tours is in Tusayan, Arizona home of the Grand Canyon National Park Airport that is situated by the South Rim main gates. Choppers that depart from there only fly over the South Rim. And unlike West Rim helicopter flights, they're not permitted to fly below the level of the rim.
You can opt for a landing tour when you depart from Vegas. The perennial favorite always seems to be the one that lands on the bottom and includes a picnic there. If they choose to, after the picnic, guests can take a raft trip along the gentle water section of the Colorado River. Other guests go for the thrills and chills of a walk on the glass Grand Canyon Skywalk.
The rafting tours take up an entire day. People sometimes call them float tours because they glide along such smooth water. Float tours are perfect for groups and families because they are suitable for children ages four and up as well as older adults.
The River Tours
There are a couple of float tours available at the South Rim. The standard tour takes you to Glen Canyon Dam by motor coach from the starting point in Tusayan. The dam marks the beginning of the river portion of the tour. After boarding your 19-passenger pontoon raft, you'll float down the river for 15 amazing miles until you reach historic Lee's Ferry. One of the trip's big highlights is beautiful Horseshoe Bend.
The deluxe South Rim float tour begins with an airplane flight from Tusayan to Page, AZ, where you'll get into a Jeep for a 4x4 tour of unique Antelope Canyon (where the "slot canyons" are). After the Jeep ride, guests are taken to Glen Canyon Dam to begin their water excursion.
Motor Coach Tours Of The Canyon
Several Vegas bus tours head for the South Rim and Grand Canyon West-take your choice. The all-day South Rim tour that comes with complementary lunch and hotel pickup and drop-off is the most popular bus tour out there. At the Park, guests are given 2 1/2 hours to explore.
A lot of options are available for West Rim bus tours, making them popular with travelers too. Like South Rim tours, they're a terrific value. One of the upgrades you can get comes with a helicopter ride to the floor of the canyon and a raft ride along the Colorado River. Another popular choice includes VIP access to the Grand Canyon Skywalk.
Booking The Tour
These tours are fantastic fun for people of all ages and they are very popular. The helicopter tours are probably the most popular and usually sell out in advance. It is always best to book a tour of the Grand Canyon at least one week in advance. If you wait until the last minute, you might not be able to get the tour you want!
Here's my final piece of advice: book on the Web. That is where you can look for low rates and special deals. Go to the tour operator's website and purchase your tour and you will qualify for the low Internet rate.