The Memorial Day holiday is right around the corner. Bookings for air tours on Grand Canyon helicopters are skyrocketing.
Memorial Day falls on Monday, May 26th this year. Since it is a three-day weekend, many people head for the Grand Canyon. So don't wait until the last minute to book your trip. It is always a good idea to book your hotel and Grand Canyon tour at least one or two weeks ahead of time.
Tours of the canyon originate in Las Vegas, Sedona, Phoenix, Flagstaff, Scottsdale, and Williams.
Las Vegas Tours To The West Rim
First, it's important to know that choppers flying from Vegas only do the West Rim. The South Rim is just too far for them.
However, that is certainly no problem, because the West Rim is a lot of fun. You can fly to the floor of the canyon at the West Rim, and that is the only place it is permitted in the National Park. The descent is a thrilling experience.
Las Vegas tours come in two types, one is air-only and the other lands at the canyon. Both of these tour types give you aerial views of Lake Mead, Hoover Dam, the Skywalk, and the Grand Canyon. The landing tours, though, also touch down at the top or at the bottom of the gorge (the latter is way more popular). Once the canyon floor, you can enjoy a relaxing lunch or add on a boat ride along the smooth waters of the Colorado River.
The Vegas chopper tours depart from an airfield in Boulder City, Nevada or from the Vegas Strip.
Strip flights are better for several reasons. It is certainly more convenient to your hotel and the tours even pick you up at your hotel and take you back. If you take a tour out of Boulder City, you will ride a van shuttle to the airfield. If you depart from the Strip instead, the tour operator picks you up in a limo. How cool is that? You also get to see the Strip as part of the tour.
South Rim Flights
South Rim helicopter tours are ideal when you depart from a city in Arizona. Just keep in mind, none of those tours can land at the bottom of the canyon.
The South Rim has its own claim to fame though, and that is its natural beauty because of the wilderness area it encompasses.
There are two tours available here too, one of them is thirty minutes long and the other one lasts fifty minutes. The longer tour is best because it flies you over about 3/4 of the entire National Park area.
Combo tours are also available at this Rim. Right now, the two most popular combo trips are the ones that include a ride on a Harley-Davidson motorcycle and the ones that include a sunset Jeep ride (it's not overly rough).
Look for a deluxe option when you book your flight. Why do that? These tours use the EcoStar 130 choppers and they offer an exceptional experience. These helicopters have huge windshields that wrap around the cabin so you have great views, plus you have lots of personal space and stadium-style seating for unobstructed sightseeing. EcoStars are really the only way to go.
The Grand Canyon will be much busier than normal during Memorial Day weekend. The date is fast approaching, so book your tour as soon as possible. If you plan to depart from Vegas, choose a tour that takes off from the Strip. Both rims offer tours on EcoStar choppers, so try to snag a seat on one of them for the best flight possible.