Antelope Canyon Tour Expectations
A week before our impromptu trip through Arizona I researched the Antelope Canyon tours. The pictures were gorgeous, and I just had to know where this amazing place was and how I could get my hands on it. Well, a little research showed that the canyon is controlled by the Navajo Native American Tribe, and that the tours could be packed and kept fast-paced. Additionally, I read that the peak time to visit is around noon every day (when a strong beam of overhead light filters through the underground canyon), and that any other time doesn’t provide the best colors and light.
When I realized we had planned a trip to the exact city of the Antelope Canyon tours, I honestly wasn’t too excited to go. At that point I was convinced that the entrance fee wouldn’t be worth it, and that we’d be left feeling exploited and disappointed. Ben, however, felt strongly about trying it out, so we took our chances.
My expectations of the Antelope Canyon tour were understandably low. I’m not too proud to say that I WAS WRONG and the Antelope Canyon tour was completely worth it! My low expectations were blown out of the water, but I think even high expectations would have been exceeded. It was THAT good.
I think the reason our experience was so amazing is that we were in the 8:10 am tour group. The tour gets more popular later in the day when the sun gets closest to shining overhead, so our time slot was pretty sparse. We three had a tour guide all to ourselves, as did two other groups of 2-5 people around us. All together there were only about 20 people in the canyon during our time slot, and our guides spaced us out enough to feel like we had it to ourselves! I was amazed! Not only was it paced perfectly, but our guides were really generous with camera help and the best photo locations. PERFECT!
Antelope Canyon Tour: WORTH IT pictures!
But pictures speak louder than words, so here you go… Antelope Canyon Tour: WORTH IT!
I’m NOT a professional photographer. In fact, our tour guide happily showed me how to use my own camera settings to capture anything in there. She even showed me the exact angles for some of these. The point is, I love beautiful, unique places and now I have pictures to remember that experience forever. I love these pictures. The fact that we went to this special place, had it to ourselves, and have incredible photo evidence makes me feel so special!
Get the Most Out of Your Antelope Canyon Tour
- Go on a weekday
- Book your tour a day in advance or the morning of for the earliest time slots! Our 8:10 am tour was virtually empty, while the 9:10 am tour we passed was packed.
- Bring a DSLR (even if you don’t know how to use it. Ask questions and your guide will show you the best settings)
- Bring a smart phone (The guides will point out which shots are actually BETTER through the phone’s auto photo settings!)
- Don’t bring a tripod. (They are only permitted on the dedicated photography tours)
- Wear tennis shoes. There are 5 staircases to climb of varying narrowness. Sand blows through the open slot and can cover the stairs, which makes them pretty slippery.
- If your tour is empty enough feel free to ask for extra time to take photos around the canyon, but be respectful of the tourists around you and of your tour guide. Don’t take too much time or slow things down- others deserve the right to take their own pictures in special spots, and the tour needs to move on so the next group can come in.
- Be respectful of the Navajo culture and of your tour guide and those operating the tours. Be nice.
Antelope Canyon Tours Information
The Antelope Canyon Tour is found in Page, Arizona. Advanced reservations on their website is recommended, but we showed up at 7:45 that morning and were placed in the 8:10 am group with no problem. Tickets were $33 per adult, but all children 5 and under (which Whit is!) are free. We walked 1/3 mile across the canyon top to one end, then spent around 1 hour slowly walking the 1/3 mile back through the canyon to end at the same spot we began. There are two sections of the canyon, and about 5 sets of stairs. The stairs were easy to use, but you do have to watch for sand blowing over your head from the top of the canyon.
All things considered, the Antelope Canyon Tour is not only WORTH IT, it’s pretty much one of my favorite hours EVER.