The South Rim of the Grand Canyon encompasses an impressive one million acres of natural beauty. There's no way you could see it all on a land tour. The best option is to take a helicopter tour, since one of these enables you to see about 3/4 of the entire Grand Canyon National Park in about an hour.
You would take months trekking around the park if you wanted to take in all of the sites that you can see from a helicopter tour. And even if you managed to make it around all of the park's beautiful spots, you wouldn't be able to see them in their full splendor. The South Rim is incredibly beautiful, and taking a helicopter tour ensures you won't miss a thing.
South Rim Tours
There are some different tour options for South Rim visitors, so you'll be able to choose a package that suits your sense of adventure as well as your budget.
The basic 30-minute tour is the least expensive and it flies you over the North and South Rims. This tour will even take you down into the Dragoon Corridor, a spectacularly beautiful part of the Canyon that is also its widest point.
If you like the sound of the shorter helicopter tour but still want a little more, why not try a tour that includes a 4x4 Jeep ride. So along with the exciting aerial tour, you'll get to take a fun ground tour to famous spots such as Mather Point, Yavapai Point, and Yaki Point, as well as Grand Canyon Village. The roads in the Grand Canyon are often quite busy during the peak summer tourist months. That's why a Jeep tour is a good idea, you get to see the main landmarks without having to travel on the busy main roads.
Besides the thirty minute helicopter tour, there is also a fifty minute air tour available. The longer tour covers a lot more ground, so you see the same sights as the shorter tour and the Jeep tour combined. Some major landmarks you'll see include the pyramid-shaped rock formation called the Temple of Ra, the Colorado River Confluence, the isolated sections of the North Rim, and Imperial Point. This is by far the best package available, allowing you to see almost all of the National Park.
(There is an airplane tour which follows an identical route to the 50 minute helicopter tour. However, if at all possible, you should book a helicopter tour, because you'll have a better view. The helicopters can fly a lot lower than airplanes, so you're closer to the canyon, plus the windows in the airplanes are much smaller than the big wraparound windows in the choppers that provide superior viewing.)
Try A Deluxe Tour
You can choose the 30 or 50 minute tour in either a basic or deluxe package. The main difference in the type of tours is the type of aircraft used. Basic tours use the traditional Bell Ranger or Eurocopter AStar choppers, while deluxe tours use EcoStar 130 aircraft.
The EcoStar is built for comfort with extra leg room, comfy seats, and wraparound windows for the ultimate viewing experience. In addition, the choppers are quiet on the inside, so your ride is more comfortable. I recommend paying extra for a deluxe tour if you can, but that's not to say that a basic tour won't provide you with an unforgettable experience.
South Rim helicopter tours have become increasingly popular in recent years, and today a helicopter tour is usually the first on the priority list for those who visit the Grand Canyon. That means the flights can fill up fast. For that reason, you should buy your tour well in advance, you may even want to do it as soon as you book your hotel reservations. If you wait too long, you'll probably have to pay more if you can even find open seats available.
A helicopter tour is the perfect way to top off a trip to the Grand Canyon. There's simply no better way to see the Grand Canyon.