Grand Canyon Trips - Finding the Best Airplane, Helicopter Rides
Winter is an excellent time to take a Grand Canyon air tour. Choose between helicopter and airplane rides. Learn which is right for you. Read this article.
You can view the region from the air on a helicopter or airplane and fly to the South or West Rim.
The chopper tours are especially fun. These tours leave daily from different airstrips in the Las Vegas metro area, including the Strip. Do note that if you depart from The Strip you'll pay a premium.
Departing From The Strip
For many travelers, Strip departures are worth their weight in gold because of the convenience. Your other option is to go to a different airstrip like the one located in Boulder City, but that is a thirty-minute drive. You have to decide if it is worth the inconvenience to save money on your tour.
Las Vegas helicopter tours are either aerial or land. The air-only tours are ideal when you don't have much time to spend but want to get a view of the Grand Canyon.
You can't beat the landing tours though because you get a more personal experience at the canyon. Landing tours come with lots of options, one of the most popular is a ride down to the bottom of the canyon where you can enjoy a fun picnic. Another landing tour comes with a boat ride and passes to the Grand Canyon Skywalk.
To my mind, landing tours are special for several reasons. The first is that they are only available from Las Vegas. And second, they are only allowed at the West Rim. So you really don't want to pass up this unique opportunity if you can help it.
The plane tours from Vegas cost less than the chopper tours. This is due to there being more seats and a lower cost of operation. Further, they fly at a higher elevation than helis. Other than that, airplane tours get you to the West Rim faster and offer numerous side trips including a heli to the bottom.
There are two popular plane tours from Vegas. The first is the one is the West Rim landing tour with optional Skywalk. This is a great option if you think you might not be brave enough to walk on the Skywalk and you want to see it before you buy the tickets. This is better than getting Skywalk tickets in advance and wasting your money because you couldn't work up the nerve to experience it.
South Rim Flight
The second airplane tour you might want to think about taking is the direct flight to the South Rim. You can't fly to the South Rim from Las Vegas in a helicopter because it is too far away. And, if you decide you want to do a helicopter ride, you can add one to the package.
Are you wondering about the difference in flight paths with the different air tours? Choppers and planes follow the same flight plan. For a West Rim tour, you fly above the Hoover Dam, Lake Mead, the West Rim and scenic points in between. From there, you'll either land or come back to Las Vegas. If you are going to the South Rim instead, you just keep flying towards the South Rim rather than landing or circling back.
Weather is also a popular subject. Fact of the matter is we can't control it. But for the most part the weather in the southwest is very good. However, when you book with a reputable tour operator, he will refund your money or re-book your flight if it has to be canceled due to bad weather.
I hope this sheds light on flights to the Grand Canyon. All you have to do is figure out if you want to go by plane or chopper and then figure out which rim you want to see. Other than that, welcome to Las Vegas and enjoy the incredible natural beauty of the canyon.
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