So the Americans have this little erosion problem that draws 5 millon visitors per year. Yep 5,000,000, that’s a huge number. The Colorado river, which is barely a trickle in the Arizona dessert has managed to carve this monumental cavernous gorge which draws not only Americans, but visitors from all over the world. Yes, I’m talking about the Grand Canyon. NOTHING I had read or seen could have prepared me for this amazing sight! WOW!
So I’m a little patriotic, I love Australia. I think our outback is underrated, and I have seen some stunning Aussie gorges. Could the Grand Canyon really that much better…
The answer is, the Grand Canyon, like all amazing natural formations, is natures work of art, and truely needs to be seen to be believed. It is spectacular, and no image will ever do it justice.
I did a little research prior to booking our tour. I would like to share my findings with readers.
We had hired a car in LA and drove straight to Vegas. When I was first planning the Grand Canyon visit I thought we would simply drive ourselves there and save the tour fees.
After a little more research and I found out the drive from Vegas to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon was at least 4 hours. That’s an 8 hour round trip. If you add time for rest breaks and then trekking around that big hole in the ground it was going to be a HUGE day. There had to be an easier way?
Online there were quite a lot of tour operator offering day trips to the Grand Canyon. I selected one from the Viator website because it had a 4 1/2 star rating.
Grand Canyon and Hoover Dam Day Trip from Las Vegas with Optional Skywalk
The tour was 12 hours and included:
- Hotel Pickup
- Coach trip to the Grand Canyon West Rim
- 15-minute Hoover Dam photo stop from the pedestrian walkway
- Optional IMAX theatre – Grand Canyon
- 3 hours at the Grand Canyon
- Drop-off at Las Vegas hotel
The price was $220 per person. So where do I sign up? This seemed like the perfect, no drama way to experience the Grand Canyon, plus get a little running history on the area along the way.
…but wait, there’s more!
Remembering that America is the land of coupons I googled coupons for the tour, just as I was about to book.
The coupon fairy cut my tour price in half!
4 people on the 12 hour Grand Canyon Tour went from $880 down to $299. Same coach operator, same tour and same inclusions. But a saving of more than 50% on the tour.
The site offering the discounted tour was Smarter Vegas.
Happy that I snagged a deal we set off to meet our guides.
As we left Vegas our driver explained that Las Vegas is completely surrounded by a mountain range. It was something that we had noted as we drove into Vegas from LA and now as we left the city we were again climbing over the range.
The Grand Canyon is 277 miles in length and 18 miles across at it’s widest point. This monstrous hole in the ground is located completely in Arizona but the west rim in not located on American soil.
The South rim is 230 miles south of the west rim and further away from Vegas. We also needed to travel up 7000ft in altitude so we were warned the climate would be cooler. The bus driver informed us that Spring time is the best time to visit the Grand Canyon as there are significantly less visitors which means better photo opportunities and more time enjoying the view.
After another quick play in the snow we boarded the bus to ready to go to our next lookout. Bright Angel is just 6 miles from Mather Point and offers another stunning view of the landscape.
Our drop off point at Bright Angel was right at the rim on the canyon. There was literally no need to walk more than a few steps to see the grandeur. A sandstone block wall provided a nice spot to sit and admire the view. We had an hour available to walk around, take photo’s , souvenir shop or get a bite to eat.