Vegas Air Tours to Grand Canyon Park During Winter Holidays
The Grand Canyon is gorgeous through the winter season. Ideal way to see it? By plane or helicopter. Browse this article for specifics.
Las Vegas, Nevada is the ideal place to begin an air tour of the Grand Canyon. If you will be in Arizona though, you can catch a tour out of Tusayan, which is near the South Rim. Both are great locations so lets dive in and take a look at them.
Tours Out Of Vegas
You can go to the South or West Rim from Las Vegas. The South Rim is too far to go there by chopper though, so the Vegas helicopters only go to the West Rim. You can go to either rim by airplane.
Vegas helicopters take off from various airports in the metro area, including Henderson and Boulder City. On the way to the canyon, the aircraft fly over the Hoover Dam and Lake Mead, then they fly over the canyon and return, or they land at the top or bottom of the rim. The choppers and planes that depart from Vegas take a path the lets you see Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam, then they pass over the rim and head back or they stop and land at the rim.
As you might guess, the air-only tours cost the least. However, if you really want the total package, consider a landing tour, especially one that lands at the bottom or another that lands at the top that includes the Grand Canyon Skywalk. Both tours are fun though and you will enjoy whichever one you choose.
West Rim airplane tours follow the same path as helicopters except they go at a higher altitude. You can also choose from tours that land and those that do not. If you are brave, you should take one of the tours that includes a stroll on the Skywalk. But the one that comes with a chopper descent to the canyon floor followed by a boat ride is a lot of fun too.
It is difficult to choose between those tours and the airplane tour that goes to the South Rim. Frankly, this is the only way to fly in my book. It takes about sixty minutes to fly to the South Rim and once there, you have over two hours to explore the Park.
Tours Of The South Rim
The helicopter tours of the South Rim last thirty or fifty minutes. There is also a fifty minute airplane tour available that covers the same ground as the longer helicopter tour. The 30-minute trip goes from the South Rim to the North and back. It's the cheapest option and very popular. I get asked if "helicopters are allowed to land at the bottom at the South Rim? and they don't because the Park Service prohibits it.
Weather At The Canyon
Christmas in the winter so you should expect it to be pretty cool. The South Rim is colder than the West because it's at a higher elevation. Regardless, I recommend pulling a 10-day forecast prior to your flight to get a better idea of what the actual temperature/weather will be like. Based on it, dress accordingly and don't assume that the inside of a helicopter and an airplane is impermeable to the cold (for the most part it's comfortably warm).
Keep in mind how much fun it is to go on a Grand Canyon tour over the holidays. Since it is a busy travel time, tours will fill up fast. So book your seats early to avoid disappointment. Also, keep in mind that helicopters will not be flying Christmas Day; if you need a flight, do an airplane tour.
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