Antelope Canyon is canceling photo tours due to overcrowding
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
We are willing to bet you can’t go a day without scrolling past an image of Antelope Canyon on Instagram. It’s a slot canyon in Arizona beloved by tourists and photographers alike for the remarkable way the red sandstone undulates and catches the light.
View this post on Instagram
The canyon is located on Navajo land in Page, Arizona. Technically, there are two slot canyon sections — Upper Antelope Canyon (called The Crack) and Lower Antelope Canyon (The Corkscrew).
Lately, though, the canyon has been receiving a ton of negative reviews because of the hordes of people trying to snap a picture. While the photos might look great on social media, the lines behind the scenes tell a different story.
Navajo Nation Parks and Recreation finally took action. As of Dec. 20, all photography tours have been banned from the Canyon, according to the Arizona Republic. Tripods are also not allowed.
For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
USA Today reported that, because the number of visitors to the canyon has increased exponentially in recent years (some 4 million people come here to add the natural wonder to their photo collection), tour operators found it challenging to find time for professional photographers to get the shots they needed.
The good news, though, is you can still take photos with your phone or camera on regular tours. The hope here is that this should cut down on wait times, as a group tour is the only way to see the canyon at all.
If you want to make the most of your trip to Antelope Canyon, you’ll want to book your tour as soon as you can. Don’t worry, you can still take photos; you’ll just have a tour of the canyon, as well. In our book, that’s a win-win.
While the canyon is located in the Grand Canyon State, the closest airport is actually in Las Vegas (LAS). A handful of companies even offer one-day Antelope Canyon tours from Las Vegas. Rates range from anywhere from $65 to around $200 dollars per person, depending on which tour you choose.
If you’re planning on flying into Las Vegas, you can find flights from virtually every major airline from all major (and minor) U.S. cities. Of course, you’ll want to pay for your flight on a card that earns you bonus points on airfare, such as The Platinum Card® from American Express (5x on airfare booked directly with the airline or via Amex Travel on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year), Chase Sapphire Reserve (3x) or Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x).
No matter where you’re coming in from, you’ll want to give yourself plenty of time to explore. The tours are usually an hour to an hour and a half in duration, and you’ll often pay a premium for a prime time afternoon tour. That’s because the canyons will be filled with beams of light during the middle of the day, when the sunlight floods the canyon.
Depending on what you want out of your visit, there are a few optimal times to go. To see the aforementioned light beams, you’ll want to plan your trip between late March and early October. On the flip slide, if you just want to avoid as many tourists as possible, your best bet is to go from November to March — and the earlier in the day, the better.
There are a ton of variables to consider depending on your personal preferences, but the good news is that no matter which route you go, you’re in for a fantastic trip … and hopefully one with far fewer crowds.
Featured image courtesy of Brian Baril Photography/Getty Images.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees