Antelope Canyon tours

Plan your visit to Antelope Canyon – Best Time & Tours

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Antelope Canyon is a dream travel destination for many visitors to the American Southwest. After all, there’s nowhere else in the world where you can see curves of water-carved sandstone illuminated by shafts of light from above as if by magic.

As soon as we saw pictures of this natural wonder, we knew we had to visit. At first, we weren’t sure how Antelope Canyon, which is located in Page, Arizona, would fit into our 10-day West Coast road trip itinerary. When we saw how close the canyon is to Horseshoe Bend, the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, and a few other spots on our photography bucket list, though, we realized we could easily visit Antelope Canyon too.

Antelope Canyon, antelope canyon arizona

Plan Your Visit to Antelope Canyon – Best Time & Tours

There are plenty of spectacular images of Antelope Canyon, but nothing quite compares to seeing this beautiful slot canyon in person. This guide will help you make the most of your trip to Antelope Canyon in Arizona, starting with the basic tips below.

How to visit Antelope Canyon

To make the most of your visit to Antelope Canyon, follow these steps:

  1. Lower or Upper Antelope Canyon?: Decide which canyon you would like to visit
  2. Best time to visit Antelope Canyon: Travel (if possible) during the summertime
  3. Book an Antelope Canyon tour: It is essential to book a tour in advance
  4. Travel to Antelope Canyon: Below, we’ll explain how to get to Antelope Canyon
  5. Prepare your camera/smartphone: Get your gear ready to photograph Antelope Canyon
  6. Enjoy your visit to Antelope Canyon: Follow the Navajo guide’s tips
  7. Antelope Canyon surroundings: Enjoy other wonders near Antelope Canyon, such as Horseshoe Bend

You’ll find more information, including directions to Antelope Canyon, places to stay near Antelope Canyon, and the difference between Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon, in the following sections:

Upper or Lower Antelope Canyon – Which section is best?

The most important decision you have to make before visiting Antelope Canyon is whether you want to see Upper Antelope Canyon, Lower Antelope Canyon, or both! Both sections of the canyon have their merits and are worth seeing, so your decision will most likely come down to your budget, your fitness/mobility level, and your ability to deal with crowds.

Upper Antelope Canyon

If you’ve ever seen a photo of Antelope Canyon, it’s probably been of Upper Antelope Canyon.

This section of the canyon is where you can see beams of sunlight poke through the sandstone and illuminate the canyon floor and surrounding rocks. Because this is such a famous natural phenomenon, Upper Antelope Canyon tends to be more popular and crowded than Lower Antelope Canyon.

Upper Antelope Canyon, arizona antelope canyon

Upper Antelope Canyon

Beyond that, Upper Antelope Canyon is definitely the best option for anyone who wants an easier, shorter out & back hike. The entrance to Upper Antelope Canyon is at ground level and the hike through the canyon is shorter and at a smaller incline than the hike for Lower Antelope Canyon.

Lower Antelope Canyon

Lower Antelope Canyon is just as gorgeous as Upper Antelope Canyon, even if you won’t be able to see Antelope Canyon light beams here. You’ll also benefit from a less crowded and more peaceful visiting experience than at Upper Antelope Canyon.

Lower Antelope Canyon, antelope canyon tours

Lower Antelope Canyon

On the other hand, this one-way hike through Lower Antelope Canyon is longer and more difficult than the Upper Antelope Canyon hike. You’ll have to walk up and down several flights of stairs and ladders throughout the hike, which can be exciting if you’re feeling adventurous, but if you’re afraid of heights or have limited mobility, you should probably avoid Lower Antelope Canyon.

Upper vs. Lower Antelope Canyon

We’ve visited both Upper Antelope Canyon and Lower Antelope Canyon in one day and came to the following conclusions:

  • If you want to save money, we recommend just taking the Lower Antelope Canyon tour. There is quite a difference in price between the Upper Antelope Canyon tour and the Lower Antelope Canyon tour, plus you’ll still be able to cross the slot canyon experience off your bucket list.
  • If you are going to visit Upper Antelope Canyon, it is best to go in summer, during the middle of the day, when you can see the light beams on the canyon floor. Otherwise, you’ll miss out on one of this canyon’s most spectacular features.
  • If you can afford it, take both an Upper Antelope Canyon tour and a Lower Antelope Canyon tour. Both sections of the canyon are unique and beautiful, and it is worth it, if you can, to see both parts.

In any case, whichever part of the canyon you see, visiting Antelope Canyon is worth it!

Best time to visit Antelope Canyon

While you can technically visit Antelope Canyon year-round, the best time to visit Antelope Canyon will depend on what you want to see and how you want to see it.

Best time of year to visit Antelope Canyon

The best time to visit Antelope Canyon if you want to see light beams in the Upper section is from the end of March to the beginning of October.

On the other hand, if you want to avoid the crowds of tourists, November to March is a better time of year to visit, but you won’t be able to see Antelope Canyon light beams.

Antelope Canyon, antelope canyon national park

Best time of year to visit Antelope Canyon

Another thing to keep in mind is that Arizona’s monsoon season lasts from June to September and can bring heavy rain. It’s not common for Antelope Canyon to close, but intense precipitation can make visiting the canyon unsafe for visitors, so if the canyon were to close at any time, it would most likely be during these months.

Best time of day to visit Antelope Canyon

If you want to see light beams in Upper Antelope Canyon, the best time to go to Antelope Canyon is midday. Planning your visit between 11 am and 1:30 pm, when the sunlight is perpendicular to the canyon, will give you the best chance of seeing these famed Antelope Canyon light beams for yourself.

Antelope Canyon, best time to visit antelope canyon in arizona

Best time of day to visit Antelope Canyon

You should also try to plan your visit on a clear, cloudless day so that you’ll actually get enough sun to see light beams. If it’s too cloudy or not sunny enough, the sun’s rays won’t poke through the canyon.

Antelope Canyon tickets and opening hours

Antelope Canyon tickets do tend to sell out quickly, so if there’s a specific time/date that you want to take a tour, make sure you book your tickets well in advance.

The price of your tickets will include the $8 permit fee you have to pay to enter Navajo Nation attractions.

Upper Antelope Canyon tickets and opening hours

Here is a breakdown of the Antelope Canyon entrance fee for an Upper Antelope Canyon tour:

  • Non-refundable adult ticket (includes $8 Antelope Canyon permit, entry fee, walking tour with Navajo guide) – $125
  • Non-refundable children’s (age 7 and younger) ticket – $100
  • Adult ticket with free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance – $143.75
  • Children’s (age 7 and younger) ticket with free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance – $115

In terms of opening hours, this Upper Antelope Canyon tour is available at 11:30 am and 1:30 pm and lasts 90 minutes.

Lower Antelope Canyon tickets and opening hours

The breakdown of the Antelope Canyon entrance fee for a Lower Antelope Canyon tour is as follows:

  • Non-refundable adult ticket (includes $8 Antelope Canyon permit, entry fee, walking tour with Navajo guide) – $89
  • Non-refundable youth (age 4-12) ticket – $59
  • Non-refundable children’s (age 3 and younger) ticket – $10
  • Adult ticket with free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance – $102.35
  • Youth (age 4-12) ticket with free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance – $70
  • Children’s (age 3 and younger) ticket with free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance – $15

This 90-minute Lower Antelope Canyon tour can be taken at any of the following times: 9:30 am, 10:00 am, 10:30 am, 11:00 am, 11:30 am, 12:00 pm, or 12:30 pm.

Can you visit Antelope Canyon without a tour?

Many tourists often wonder, can you go to Antelope Canyon without a tour? The answer is no, you can’t visit Antelope Canyon without booking a tour.

Antelope Canyon, page arizona to antelope canyon

Can you visit Antelope Canyon without a tour?

Antelope Canyon is located on Navajo Nation land and is therefore subject to Navajo Nation rules. As such, you must book an Antelope Canyon tour with a Navajo guide, or else you will not be able to visit Antelope Canyon.

Antelope Canyon Tours

Although many people call it Antelope Canyon National Park, Antelope Canyon is not actually managed by the U.S. National Park Service. As we’ve mentioned above, Antelope Canyon is located on Navajo Nation land, so you must book one of the Antelope Canyon Navajo tours in order to visit.

While the Upper Antelope Canyon tour and Lower Antelope Canyon tour are the main tours visitors take, the Antelope Canyon X tour is another option for tourists who want to take in the canyon without the crowds.

Upper Antelope Canyon Tours

Upper Antelope Canyon is the most famous and popular section of Antelope Canyon because of its iconic light beams.

Getting to the canyon is simple: you and your group take a 20-minute ride in a 4×4 to the mouth of the canyon along a paved road, followed by a sandy track. Along the way, your guide will explain the history and formation of the canyon.

Upper Antelope Canyon, is antelope canyon open

Upper Antelope Canyon Tours

The canyon entrance is at ground level, so you won’t have to go down a flight of stairs as you do at Lower Antelope Canyon. The route within the canyon is short, but you will enter and exit on the same narrow, two-way path, so you will be sharing the path with other people going in the opposite direction. As such, visitors are not allowed to wear backpacks.

You will have some time to take photographs within the canyon, but the guides do want to keep things moving, since there are other groups that need to enter the canyon, so you may end up feeling a little rushed. Still, admiring the canyon from within and seeing the glittering light beams in person is worth it.

*Important note: The Navajo Nation has decided to discontinue photography tours at Upper Antelope Canyon from 2020 onwards. The main reason, according to their statement, is “to free up space in the canyon and make the experience more enjoyable for the visitors.” We’ll keep this article updated and let you know if they start running photo tours of Upper Antelope Canyon again in the future.

antelope canyon

DOWNLOAD THE GUIDE TO PHOTOGRAPHING ANTELOPE CANYON

Lower Antelope Canyon tours

Over the last few years, many visitors have begun to visit Lower Antelope Canyon to avoid the crowds and higher-priced tours at Upper Antelope Canyon.

The trade-off, though, is a much more intense hike through the canyon. Lower Antelope Canyon, like most canyons, is carved deep into the ground, so when we took our Lower Antelope Canyon tour, we had to descend a steep, metal stairway to get to the bottom.

This process can be dangerous, so the guide makes sure that each group member descends one at a time. It can take a little while for the entire group to reach the bottom of the canyon, but once you get there, the climb is worth it.

Lower Antelope Canyon, phoenix to antelope canyon

Lower Antelope Canyon tours

Since Lower Antelope Canyon is longer and wider than Upper Antelope Canyon, when we reached the bottom, we felt like we had so much more space around us than in Upper Antelope Canyon, which we really appreciated.

Even though you won’t be able to see light beams, the shapes and patterns on the walls are mesmerizing. We also felt less rushed by the Navajo guides than we did at Upper Antelope Canyon.

In the end, you still have to visit Lower Antelope Canyon with a tour group, but at least the guides give you a bit more freedom and space to enjoy the canyon and take photos than at Upper Antelope Canyon.

Antelope Canyon X tours

Escape the crowds at Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon completely by booking an Antelope Canyon X tour. Antelope Canyon X is a different part of the same slot canyon that includes Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon and is much quieter and less frequently visited.

Antelope Canyon X got its name from the striking “X” shape of the rock ceiling. Canyon X is deeper than Upper or Lower Antelope Canyon, so you’ll really feel submerged within the canyon when you visit.

Antelope Canyon X, phoenix to antelope canyon

Antelope Canyon X tours

Like the rest of Antelope Canyon, you must book a tour to visit Antelope Canyon X. The price of the Antelope Canyon X tour does not include the $8 permit fee, so you’ll have to pay for that separately in cash.

Tour tickets cost $65 for adults and $55 for children (ages 17 and younger), so you’ll save a lot of money compared to visiting other parts of the canyon. Tours leave at 8:30 am, 9:10 am, 9:50 am, 10:30 am, 11:10 am, 11:50 am, 1:10 pm, 1:50 pm, and 2:30 pm.

Other things to do near Antelope Canyon

One day is more than enough time to visit Antelope Canyon, especially since Antelope Canyon tours usually don’t last more than 90 minutes. Whether you’re staying in Page or simply want to explore the area, there are plenty of things to do near Antelope Canyon:

Lake Powell

The drive from Lake Powell to Antelope Canyon takes only 15 minutes, so you can easily visit both places in a day.

Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Lake Powell, best places to visit near Antelope Canyon

Lake Powell

Stop and admire the beautiful sandstone walls of this manmade reservoir within the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, or, if you’re feeling adventurous, you can fish, hike, boat, waterski, swim, or camp here.

Horseshoe Bend

Like Lake Powell, Horseshoe Bend is located in Page, very close to Antelope Canyon; in fact, the drive from Antelope Canyon to Horseshoe Bend only takes about 10 minutes.

Horseshoe Bend, antelope canyon to horseshoe bend

Horseshoe Bend

For thousands of years, the Colorado River has been carving out this horseshoe-shaped, 980-foot-deep canyon, which is one of the most visited attractions in Page. Visiting both Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon in one day is completely doable – you can go to Antelope Canyon in the morning and head to Horseshoe Bend at sunset.

If you want a convenient way to visit both attractions, take an Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend tour like this one. For more information on visiting Horseshoe Bend, check our guide to Horseshoe Bend.

Antelope Canyon boat tour

Don’t feel like hiking Antelope Canyon? Take an Antelope Canyon boat tour and float by the colorful sandstone walls.

Tours depart from either Antelope Point Marina in Lake Powell or Wahweap Marina at Lake Powell Resort. You’ll be able to see several miles of the canyon’s walls before it narrows.

Antelope Canyon kayak tours

Kayaking Antelope Canyon will allow you to admire this natural wonder from a whole new perspective. Antelope Canyon kayak rentals are available from Lake Powell Paddleboards and Kayaks.

antelope canyon kayak tour

Antelope Canyon kayak tours

If you’d prefer to go on one of the Antelope Canyon kayak tours, Kayak Powell offers two: a kayak-only tour and a kayaking/hiking tour. On both tours, you’ll visit parts of the canyon that you can’t reach on foot, so it’s the ultimate opportunity to get away from the crowds and take in a less-seen part of this famous attraction.

How to get to Antelope Canyon

As we’ve already mentioned, Antelope Canyon is located in Page, Arizona. Since Antelope Canyon tours usually either start from downtown Page or from the Antelope Canyon park entrance, it’s extremely useful to know how to get from Page to Antelope Canyon.

Lower Antelope Canyon, lake powell to antelope canyon

How to get to Antelope Canyon

To get to Antelope Canyon from Page, take S. Lake Powell Blvd and then turn left onto Coppermine Road. Stay on Coppermine Road until you reach AZ-98 E and then turn left onto AZ-98 E. Stay on AZ-98 E for 4.5 miles until you see the Antelope Canyon parking lot on your right.

Of course, you may be traveling to Antelope Canyon from another city or attraction. Below, you’ll find general information on how to get to Antelope Canyon from the biggest surrounding cities and attractions.

The closest airport to Antelope Canyon is in Las Vegas. It’s relatively convenient to get from Las Vegas to Antelope Canyon, as the two places are only a 4.5-hour drive (278.5 miles) apart.

If you’re staying in Las Vegas, I recommend renting a car and driving there. There are plenty of car rental options in Las Vegas and you can combine Antelope Canyon with other nearby attractions to make the most of your road trip from Las Vegas.

Another option for visiting Antelope Canyon is to rent an RV from one of the best RV rental companies in the US. That way, you’ll get both transportation and accommodation for the same price.

If driving is not your thing, don’t worry. You can also book an Antelope Canyon tour from Las Vegas. In particular, I recommend this one, which includes hotel pick-up, a visit to Antelope Canyon, and a visit to Horseshoe Bend.

The Grand Canyon is one of the most visited national parks in the United States, for good reason. Don’t miss out on the chance to visit this stunning natural landmark, especially since it’s not far from Antelope Canyon to the Grand Canyon.

The drive from either the Grand Canyon North Rim or the Grand Canyon South Rim to Antelope Canyon is only 2.5 hours (130 miles approx.). You can even take a day trip from Las Vegas like this one to visit both the Grand Canyon and Antelope Canyon in one day.

If you’re really short on time, taking a Grand Canyon helicopter tour that includes Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend like this one is a convenient and relatively quick way to check all of these attractions off your sightseeing list.

Ideally, we would recommend taking more time to visit the Grand Canyon so you can properly enjoy the breathtaking landscapes and views. If you want to stay inside the park, make sure to check our guide on where to stay in the Grand Canyon.

Flagstaff and Sedona are popular tourist cities in Arizona that also happen to be close to Antelope Canyon. The drive from Flagstaff to Antelope Canyon only takes about 2 hours since the two places are 132 miles apart.

Sedona is not much further away – it only takes about 3 hours to drive the 146 miles from Sedona to Antelope Canyon.

There are plenty of Antelope Canyon tours that leave from Sedona or Flagstaff, including this one, which includes hotel pick-up, an Antelope Canyon tour, and a visit to the Painted Desert and Horseshoe Bend.

Phoenix and Scottdale are two other major cities in Arizona that are close to Antelope Canyon. Antelope Canyon is located north of Phoenix, and the 276-mile drive from Phoenix to Antelope Canyon takes about 4.5 hours.

Scottsdale is about equidistant from Antelope Canyon, since driving from Scottsdale to Antelope Canyon (285 miles) also takes about 4.5 hours.

Many tours to Antelope Canyon leave from both Phoenix and Scottsdale, but we recommend this tour that leaves from either city and includes hotel pick-up, lunch, and a visit to Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend.

Seeing Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon in one trip is an absolute no-brainer. Both of these natural wonders are located in Page, about a 10-minute drive apart, so most tourists see both in one day.

You can certainly visit Horseshoe Bend on your own and book a separate Antelope Canyon tour, but why not make it easy by booking a Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon tour like this one? That way, you won’t have to worry about parking and transportation from Page.

Like Horseshoe Bend, Lake Powell is located in Page, Arizona, so it’s relatively simple to get from Lake Powell to Antelope Canyon. The two sites are 10 miles apart, and you can drive from one to the other in about 15 minutes.

The distance from Antelope Canyon to Monument Valley is only about 124 miles, so it is not unusual for tourists to visit both places during the same trip.

If you plan on visiting Antelope Canyon and Monument Valley in one day, we advise taking an Antelope Canyon tour in the middle of the day and arriving at Monument Valley in time for sunrise or sunset, as those are the best times of day to see each place.

As we mentioned in our guide to visiting Monument Valley, Antelope Canyon and Monument Valley observe different time zones during the summer, even though they are both located in Arizona. Keep this in mind for your Antelope Canyon tour so that you don’t miss it by mixing up the times.

Bryce Canyon may not be as famous as the Grand Canyon, but it is equally worth seeing. Traveling the 149 miles from Bryce Canyon to Antelope Canyon takes about 3 hours by car, so you could combine both in a single day trip or visit Bryce Canyon in one day and see Antelope Canyon the next day.

Zion is yet another national park that is not far from Antelope Canyon. Driving from Antelope Canyon to Zion National Park is a 100-mile journey that only takes about 2 hours.

Visit Zion National Park on your way to or from Antelope Canyon, or book a multi-day tour from Las Vegas to Antelope Canyon, Zion, Bryce Canyon, the Grand Canyon, and Monument Valley so you can see all of Utah and Arizona’s most stunning natural landmarks.



 

Where to stay near Antelope Canyon

With both Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend in the area, there are plenty of options for accommodations in Page, Arizona. Whether you’re interested in camping or staying at a hotel, you shouldn’t have trouble finding places to stay near Antelope Canyon as long as you book well in advance.

If you want to go camping near Antelope Canyon, I recommend Page Lake Powell Antelope Canyon Campground, which has both tent and RV options. You can even stay in a covered wagon if “glamping” is more your style.

Antelope Canyon, tickets antelope canyon national park

Where to stay near Antelope Canyon

If you want more comfortable Antelope Canyon lodging, these are the best hotels near Antelope Canyon:

  • Hyatt Place Page Lake Powell: This highly-rated hotel is located in the center of Page. Since the town is small and touristy, rooms fill up quickly, so be sure to book your room well before your trip.
  • Country Inn & Suites by Radisson: This is, without a doubt, the best hotel in Page, both in terms of price and rooms. It is located close to Horseshoe Bend, outside downtown Page.

FAQs about Antelope Canyon, Arizona

If you still have questions about Antelope Canyon tours, or you’re still not sure about the best way to get there, this section answers some commonly-asked questions.

Antelope Canyon is located in Page, Arizona. It is a 10-minute drive from downtown Page and a 10-minute drive from Horseshoe Bend.

Antelope Canyon is open year-round. If there is heavy snow or rain and the canyon is considered unsafe for visitors, however, the canyon may be closed.

The best time to visit Antelope Canyon is between the end of March and the beginning of October. In terms of the best time of day to visit the canyon, going between 11 am and 1:30 pm will give you the highest chance of seeing Antelope Canyon light beams in the Upper section of Antelope Canyon.

No, you cannot visit Antelope Canyon without a tour. Since Antelope Canyon is on Navajo Nation land, you must visit the canyon with a Navajo guide.

An Upper Antelope Canyon tour costs $125 for adults and $100 for children (age 7 and younger). Tickets with free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance cost $143.75 for adults and $115 for children (age 7 and younger).

A Lower Antelope Canyon tour costs $89 for adults, $59 for youths (ages 4-12), and $10 for children (ages 3 and younger). Tickets with free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance cost $102.35 for adults, $70 for youths (ages 4-12), and $15 for children (ages 3 and younger).

An Antelope Canyon X tour costs $65 for adults and $55 for children (ages 17 and younger).

The closest city to Antelope Canyon is Page, Arizona. The closest big city to Antelope Canyon is Flagstaff, Arizona.

The closest airport to Antelope Canyon is Las Vegas International Airport.

Antelope Canyon map

This map of Antelope Canyon shows where Antelope Canyon is located in relation to accommodations and other attractions, so, hopefully, it will help with your trip planning.

We hope this guide helps make your visit to Antelope Canyon unforgettable!


COFOUNDER & TRAVEL JUNKIE

Hi, I'm Ascen, a globetrotter based in Philadelphia, USA. I enjoy exploring new landscapes and creating in-depth travel guides for Capture the Atlas.

I have felt a special connection with nature and all the inhabitants of the planet since I was a kid. I am passionate about discovering new countries and especially their wildlife, but no matter how many places I visit, I will always belong to the remote beaches of Almería, in Southern Spain.

You can know a little more about me here.

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66 thoughts on “Plan your visit to Antelope Canyon – Best Time & Tours

  1. Tara Hudson says:

    Hello and thank you so much for the article!
    Hubby and I are going on a two week trip out west next month. I was planning to do South Rim and Horseshoe bend on the same day and Antelope the next morning then driving to monument valley for the night.
    First question: Can I do lower canyon without a guide? I would like to do both but don’t want to pay for two tours. Do you think it’s worth it to pay for 2 if necessary?
    Second question: Would I be better off adding Horseshoe Bend to the Antelope canyon day?

    Thanks for your help! I’m so excited!
    Tara

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      You need a guide for both tours. For me it was worth paying them, but I think that is a personal question. And yes, you can do Horseshoe Bend in the same day.

      Ascen

  2. Eitan Ivan says:

    Wow! One of the most comprehensive, educating and useful guides. Thanks for sharing and taking the time to create this wonderful guide. Moving to read your other articles.

  3. Tomek says:

    Hi guys, thank you for an incredibile amount of practical information! I have two additional questions:

    1. While visiting the area, I wanted to see Horseshoe Bend, as well. But it seems that Goosenecks State Park may be a better idea? Almost as deep as Horseshoe, maybe less colorful, but there’re two bends instead of one and it’s much less crowded. What do you think?
    2. People say that Canyon X is better to go than Lower Canyon if you don’t like crowds. The views are similar, but it’s not so popular and I would avoid crowds. But according to my research it’s pretty small and you only need few minutes to go through. I’m confused… What would you pick? Lower Canyon or X?

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Tomek,

      Thanks for your message!

      To be honest, I’ve never been to Goosenecks State Park or Canyon X, so my opinion is based just on what I saw online.

      Both places look quieter than Horseshoe/Antelope. Some friends have been shooting Canyon X and they really enjoyed it since they had the canyon all for themselves with no crowds and no rush.
      Antelope Canyon can be stressful for some people and photographers, but to me it was worth it and I think that you have to visit it at least once in a lifetime.

      That said, I recommend to do your research and check which can best suit your needs, the Southwest is full of river bends and slot canyons, so there are even more options 😉

      Have a nice trip!
      Dan

  4. Naty says:

    Thank you so much for all the detailed information! We are planning to visit Antelope Canyon in late April from Vegas. Never been to Grand or antelope canyons before. My kids are 9 and 11 years old. Would you recommend two separate day trips, one to west rim Grand Canyon and another one to antelope canyon? Or the overnight tour to both? From what I read, the day trips to each one provides more stops and time to be in each location more time and visit more thorough. Thank you!

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Naty,

      If you are staying in Las Vegas I think it’s best to take two separate one-day tours. For Antelope Canyon, this is the best tour from Las Vegas.

      Regarding the tour to Grand Canyon from Las Vegas, there are hundreds of kinds. The West Rim is the most touristic but I prefer the South Rim. However, if you are traveling with kids, maybe is easier to visit the West Rim that is just a couple of hours from Las Vegas and you will have more time to explore. This is my favorite tour to West Rim from LV.

      Let me know if you have any other questions.

      Ascen

  5. Inz says:

    Hi
    This guide is incredible thank you so much.
    We were planning on travelling early April to Sedona. Leave Sedona early am to drive 2.5 hrs to Antelope canyon and pick between upper or lower and then grab lunch and do Horseshoe bend.

    We want to fit monument valley in somehow? Would this work. The other thing is we have a 14 month old with us he can walk but not extensive amounts and we will have his stroller with us so we could use this but cab we get down to antelope canyon easily? And travelling with a little one and doing all three in one day might be much ? Maybe do a night stay and split it?

    Thanks a lot for all your help xx

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi,

      I would split Antelope + Horseshoe Bend in one day and Monument Valley on another day for sure, even if you are not traveling with an infant. However, I think that visiting the Antelope Canyon may not be a safe/good activity to do with a baby.

      In Upper Antelope Canyon, you will need to carry your baby since strollers and backpack carriers are not allowed. You will need also to provide a toddler’s car seat since you will be taken to the canyon in a jeep through a bumpy dirt road.

      If you choose Lower Antelope Canyon, you will descend into the canyon via a staircase that passes through a narrow topside opening (some simple bouldering is required) Backpack carriers are allowed for infants, but the tour company will assume no responsibility for injuries your child might sustain by bumping his head on a low-hanging rock ledge…

      I would suggest watching this full walkthrough video to make a decision.

      Ascen

  6. Anna says:

    Thank you for the informative and in depth review! Reading through the comments were quite helpful too.

    Question1: We have a 2.5 years old and planning to visit the Upper Antelope Canyon this Spring. I understand backpack carriers like the hiking ones are not approved but is a soft/front baby carrier allowed? I read somewhere that it was allowed but the article was 7 years ago.

    Question 2: We are planning in on flying into Vegas. Next morning drive to Zion, then Upper Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe bend.
    What are your recommendations? Shall we stay overnight in Page or elsewhere.

    Thank you very much.

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Anna,

      Thanks for your message and your nice words, I’m glad to see you found our info useful!

      As regards your first question, I’m afraid I don’t have an answer for that. My advice is to call the Upper Antelope Canyon tour company and ask them, they’re very helpful and will provide a quick answer to your question 😉

      Related to your second question, it depends on the time you want to spend in Zion. It’s perfectly doable doing Zion, Antelope Canyon, and Horseshoe Bend in a day, but if you’re driving the same morning from Vegas, it can be a pretty exhausting day (especially with a 2.5 years old).

      Hope you have a wonderful trip!

      Dan

  7. Rajat says:

    WOW, I am reading up all your pages on the West Coast Tour – so give me some pointer Dan/Ascen on my planned trip.

    Firstly, its in February – so plan to Drive from Las Vegas to Grand Canyon VIsitor Center on 15th Feb and drive onto Horse Shoe Bend by sunset and stay overnight at Page.
    On 16th after relaxing at Glen Canyon Dam and have booked the Upper Antelope Canyon tour for 11:30 am slot, plan to do Bryce and drive back to Las Vegas by night. I have skipped Monument Valley as I do not have much more time as on 18th drive to LA to catch a flight home.

    Any suggestions? Its intense but is it doable?

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Rajat,

      Your itinerary is doable but, please, bear in mind that you’ll be moving and driving during most of the 3 days, with almost no time for having a break or sleep.

      I think leaving aside Monument Valley is a good option considering your tight schedule, and I’ll probably consider leaving off Bryce Canyon as well so you can have more room to see places like the Grand Canyon or Antelope Canyon.

      Hope you have a memorable trip!

  8. Ramya Manickam says:

    Such detailing in every aspect we will think of. This definitely helps and is a precursor for my planning. Thanks much.

  9. saketh says:

    excellent information god bless you for writing such a detailed info, i was totally confused between lower and upper canyon, now i got full clarity.You suggested few companies in an order for the tours so is that order by the way their reviews are? can you suggest one good one for upper canyon, i am going next week on a weekday.

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Saketh,
      I usually recommend specific companies but in Antelope Canyon all are the same thing. Actually, all the companies follow the same rules, have the same price, spend the same time at the canyon and allow the same things. The only difference is at what time you want to take the tour. I did the tour with Adventurous Antelope Canyon Tour but you can choose whatever you want. All are the same 🙂

      I hope you love it. We cannot wait for coming back.

      Ascen.

  10. Husen says:

    Hello! Love your informative article! I have the following trip schedule in mind:
    Nov 30 Drive from Las Vegas To Bryce Canyon taking 4 hours. Tour Bryce Canyon for the rest of the day
    Dec 1 Bryce Canyon Hiking, Drive to Horseshoe for the sunset, Drive to Antelope Canyon Lodging Place
    Dec 2 Tour Antelope Canyon for the day, Drive to Monument Valley and stay at Monument Valley
    Dec 3 Catch the sunset and tour Monument Valley? and Drive to Grand Canyon South Rim after the sunset.

    Is it worth to just spend one day at Monument Valley? Do you have any suggestions?

    We want to do both Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon. Should we do both in one day? If we do it in one day, would we be not getting the full impact of each Upper and Lower Antelope canyon? Should we do one for each day separately? Thank you!

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Husen,

      I like your itinerary.

      One day is enough for Monument Valley. Regarding doing in a same day Upper and Lower Antelope canyon is what we did, and I recommend. I wouldn’t take the tours on different days.

      Let me know if you have any other questions.

      AScen.

  11. Raquel says:

    Hello,
    Could you give me your advice?

    We are 2 pax and we only have 1 day – October 24th – to visit Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon.
    We will be sleeping in Page on the 23rd and moving to the south rim at the end of the day on the 24th.

    Do you think is feasible to do both Upper and Lower Antelope + Horseshoe? If not, what do you think is more interesting in October and at what times?

    • raquel says:

      Hello again,
      I read the info on your webpage – very good, by the way! – but I still have one question:

      I read on your website that Horseshoe is more impressive during sunset and Antelope at midday, right? Since we are visiting both on the same day (october 24th), I was thinking on going to Horseshoe at sunrise, in order to catch Antelope by noon – what do you think?

      THU 24 Oct
      First Light
      6:56 am

      Sunrise
      7:22 am

      Sunset
      6:19 pm

      Last Light
      6:45 pm

      Horseshoe is always open? Could we visit the Horseshoe at 7:00am or is it closed?

      You also speak on your website about Monument Valley – but it’s impossible to do everything on the same day, right?

      Thank you in advance!!!
      Best,
      Raquel

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Raquel!

      Horseshoe bend is more impressive at sunset. During the sunrise, the light is very different.

      It is always open, so you can go at any time. Our plan was sunrise at Monument Valley, Upper Antelope Canyon by noon, Lower Antelope Canyon by 4, and Horseshoe bend at Sunset.
      It was intense but probably one of the best days in our US West Coast trip!

      Hope you also have a great time!

      Dan

    • raquel says:

      Hi Dan,
      Thank you for the tip. Yes, I imagine but the problem is that we are sleeping that same night at South Rim (around 2h30 hours by car, right?)

      So, given these circumstances, what do you think is feasible and what not to be missed?

      Thank you!

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Raquel,

      If you are sleeping that night at the South rim I would probably leave out Monument Valley and focus on the Antelope Canyon tours and Horseshoe bend. Even though it’s technically doable I wouldn´t recommend to pack so many things on a day. If you have extra time, around the Page area you also have Lake Powel which is also interesting, especially for chillin and having some rest.

      Cheers,

      Dan

  12. Shruti says:

    Hello There
    This is the first article of you that I read and fell in love with the article
    This is the best a Visitor can ask for , we a family of 4 from Texas are planning to Visit west coast for about 12 days and we have Grand canyon and Antelope on our to do list along with lake Tahoe and Yosemite Park. We plan to be here during the end of November and not sure if that the right time to visit the Canyons and Antelope
    Can you please guide us if we should do the Grand canyons and Antelope during this period of year ?
    If Yes do we need to Book the Antelope trip in Advance ?
    we have 1 day for grand canyons so it would be great if you can point us the major things that we need to look for
    Just as you know we are Nature lovers and want to explore and get the best out of our trip

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Shruti,

      What a great itinerary you have planned!

      You can find some snow in Grand Canyon in November ( it is not normal but it can happen). If you have just one day I recommend you to hire a Grand Canyon Helicopter tour!

      Antelope Canyon Won’t be overcrowded in November but the best time to visit is in summer, when the sunlight enters and the canyon and you can see the lights beams in Upper Antelope Canyon. Anyway you will love it.

      I also recommend you to visit Monument Valley that is not far from there and completely worthy.

      Let me know if you have any other question,

      Ascen

  13. Luke says:

    Thank you very much for this informative article.
    I am planning to see lower antelope canyon and horseshoe band from Las Vegas and after seeing them we will comeback to Vegas.
    What time is the best time to visit antelope canyon? Only 2PM and 4:30PM tickets are available.

  14. Catherine says:

    Awesome Article. Just breathtaking. On our bucket list this summer. Have a week to tour all of the sites. Is there a tour company you would recommend?

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Catherine. If you are planning for this summer you are a little late. Book wherever is a spot available. Almost all the tours are already sold out!

      Ascen.

  15. Alicia says:

    Hi there,

    Thanks for this article!! Very informational with beautiful pictures!

    I’m planning my day-trip visit soon from Vegas. Is 1-day to visit lower antelope and horseshoe bend doable without a tour guide? Thanks!

    Best,
    Alicia

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Alicia,

      1-day is enough but you have to hire a Navajo tour to visit Antelope Canyon. There is no other way. The entrance by your own is not allowed.

      Ascen.

  16. Keren Harris says:

    Amazing article, well constructed and includes all the information I was looking for in an easy to follow and logical format, very informative! Beautiful photos as well, they have inspired me to get to know my camera better before my trip.

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience.

    All the best

    Keren

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Thank you for your comment Keren,
      I hope you enjoy your visit to Antelope Canyon as much as we do.

      It is a wonderful place, sometimes overcrowded but worthy at all!

      Let us know if you have any other question.

      Ascen.

  17. Irina says:

    Hello, we are planning to see from Las Vegas – Grand Canyon, Glen Canyon Dam, Antelope Canyon, Horseshoe Bend.
    What if the best way to arrange this? How many minimum days we will need (we are not going to have much days..)? Is it really necessary to stop at Grand Canyon Parashant and Grand Staircase Escalante? or just Grand Canyon National Park would be enough to see?
    Should we book couple of nights in Page? Do we have to buy any attraction / admission tickets in advance? We would appreciate your advice.

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Irina.
      To do that tour I would suggest min 4 days. We didn’t visit Grand Canyon Parashant and Grand Staircase Escalante in our 10-day West Coast USA road trip and if you don’t have more time, I don’t suggest you to go there.

      To see Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon you only need 12 hours. You can spend just a night.

      Regarding the attractions, you need to book in advance the Grand Canyon helicopter tour and the Antelope Canyon tour (in this article you can see all the companies offering this tour. All the companies are the same price and quality. Just select the one you prefer in terms of schedule).

      Also you will need a rental car and you are set up to enjoy your road trip.

      Let us know if you have any other question!
      Ascen.

  18. Pallabi says:

    Hi Ascen, that is one brilliant guide to Antelope I must say & the pictures are breathtaking!! Great job!! Just wanted to know one thing, is it possible for wheelchair-bound people to explore lower and upper Antelope Canyon?

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Pallabi, thank you very much for your words!

      I think Antelope Canyon is not wheelchair accessible. Lower Antelope Canyon is underground, so you need to descend through a very steep stair that can be dangerous even if you don’t need a wheelchair. Regarding Upper Antelope Canyon, it is narrow and very crowded always. The only option is if you talk with some of the tour operators to get a private tour (I don’t even know if this is possible) so they can close the canyon for you. The entrance of Upper Antelope Canyon is wide for a wheelchair and worth a visit!
      Let me know if you need more information about Antelope Canyon. I will be happy if I can help you to visit this wonder 🙂

      Ascen

  19. Kornel says:

    Hi,
    Thanks for this great article! I have a question regarding the Navao fee. As far as I’ve found you have to pay in advance to book these tours, and both of them include the Navajo fee by default. How can you avoid paying the fee twice in those cases? Or do they give back the amount in cash when you show them that you have already paid this for another tour?
    Thanks,
    Kornel

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Kornel,

      Thank you very much for your comment. You are right, they include the Navajo fee by default. What we did was purchase the Upper and Lower tours and sent a request to the Lower tour to be reimbursed for the Navajo fee (send them a copy of your Upper tour so they can check you have already pay the fee).

      Let me know if you have a question and enjoy Arizona 🙂

      Ascen

    • Katarina says:

      Hi! The article is amazing!! So informative and detailed.
      I wanted to ask whether it’s possible to enter with a kid? (1yo) I wonder cause it was written that backpacks are not allowed. We are going to travel with a baby and for couple of years we want to visit Antelope canyon.
      Thank u

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Katarina,

      For Upper Antelope Canyon, three of the four companies offer options for kids:

    • Antelope Slot Canyon Tours
    • Antelope Canyon Navajo Tours
    • Adventurous Antelope Canyon Photo Tours
    • You have to select the age of your kid and make sure you bring a car seat for toddlers since the parents will be expected to provide them. Remember that the tour begins with a two-mile ride down an unpaved dirt road in a Jeep vehicle. Once in the canyon, you need to carry your kid in your arms. Strollers or backpack carriers are not allowed.

      Regarding Lower Antelope Canyon, you can drive there on your own and kids don’t pay a fee from 0 to 7 years old. Backpack carriers are allowed but you will assume the responsibility for injuries your child might suffer. Besides, you need to be prepared for somehow difficult ladders you need to pass. Your physical condition should be good to carry your kid for different ladders during the tour.

      If I were you, I think I would do my husband to carry the kid and I know he is fit enough to do it.

      Let me know if you have any other question.

      Ascen.

    • Katarina says:

      Thanks again for the information. Though, as u wrote, some of these companies do not provide guided tours with kids. And the rest have no free sports for booking.
      Checking the second day for reservation but everything is sold out. Other companies do not accept kids from 7yo.
      If there are some private tours? May be more expensive, but who accept kids and less crowded?

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Katarina,
      No private tours are provided at Antelope Canyon. Only 4 companies for Upper Antelope and 2 companies for Lower Antelope can operate there. You need to book months in advance to get a spot. If everything is filled out I recommend you to visit other of the many slot canyon are in the area. Please contact Adventurous Antelope Canyon Tours to see if kids are allowed at the other slot canyon tours.

      Ascen.

  20. Sara says:

    Hey,
    What is the best time to visit the Upper/ Lower Canyon?
    Is it allowed to take a camera and take pictures of my friends for example? or is there any rules regarding taking this?

    Thanx,

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Sara,

      The best time depends on what you are looking for and the tour you are taking. If you want to see the light Halos in Upper you should go during the summer. All this is explained throughout the article.
      If you are taking the normal tour, you can perfectly take pictures of your friends with your smartphone. Please bear in mind that the canyon is usually crowded in the normal tour, so taking pictures without people is a real challenge.
      Please let me know if you have any questions.

      Best,

      Dan
      Dan

  21. Tim says:

    In the photographer tour, do they allow you to take pictures with people in it? I only see pictures of the rocks itself.

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Tim,

      In the Photo tour, the guide stops at the main highlights of the Canyon and keep other visitors from entering the frame. All the photographers will be in line by your side, so it is not supposed to be a tour to take pictures with people on it.
      During my tour, our group was exceptionally small (just 3) and at the end of the tour, we agreed to take a picture of ourselves, but that it is not something common.
      Hope this helps,

      Dan

  22. Tracey says:

    Hello! Thank you the information. If pressed for time, is it advisable to visit both Upper and Lower, or one over the other? I’ve read Lower is less crowded?

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Tracey,

      Nowadays both canyons are crowded, and the decision to visit one or another depends on different factors and your personal taste. If I were not a photographer and I had to choose one of them I would probably go for lower, but, as I said, it entirely depends on your goals. Throughout the post you can see a comparison between Lower and Upper that might be helpful to make up your mind 😉

      Wish you all the best during your visit,

      Dan

  23. regina says:

    do you know anything about Canyon X? I hear its a lot less crowded, and I was thinking of going there instead of upper and lower canyon while I am in page in may

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Hi Regina,

      Canyon X is another section of the same Antelope Canyon so it may be as amazing as the most crowded upper and lower.

      We didn’t visit it but it should be a good option too and less crowded so go ahead and come back to let us know how was the experience.

      Ascen.

  24. Doris says:

    Wow! Congratulations to these pictures, they’re breathtaking!
    We’ve just passed the canyon and even though we would have loved to take pictures like these, after a little research we decided to skip it. Really sad that such a beautiful place is so overrun. And charging 151$ for someone bringing a camera and then chasing him/her through this place anyway is rather exorbitant in our opinion. But obviously, everyone needs to decide for themselves!

    For everyone who’s more interested in the experience than the photo motif, we can very much recommend Peek-a-boo and Spooky Canyon in Staircase Escalante National Monument. Both are very adventurous to hike through, extremely narrow in some sections and provide lovely pictures as well. And we hardly met anyone else there 😉
    Thanks for your very informative article!

    • Capture the Atlas says:

      Thank you very much for your comment Doris. I had already pointed Spooky Canyon on my map of places that I want to visit, but I hadn’t heard about the Peek-a-boo canyon before. I understand that it is not the same trail that has the same name and starts at Bryce Canyon National Park, right?

      Any other place you can share with us will be more than welcome.

      Best,
      Ascen

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