If you have an Instagram account, it’s likely you’ve seen photos of Antelope Canyon. This stunning slot Canyon is located on Navajo land in Page, Arizona. It’s not the easiest place to get to and since we were in Las Vegas for a Hilton Grand Vacations timeshare presentation, I figured why not take a day to visit Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend. Here’s what you need to know about visiting Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend from Las Vegas.
A Brief Introduction to Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend
Antelope Canyon is located in Page, Arizona, about 285 miles away from the Las Vegas Strip. The drive to Antelope Canyon switches back and forth through Arizona and Utah and takes about four and a half hours. You can visit by yourself with a rental car, but since you would have to drive over nine hours to and from Las Vegas, I recommend booking a tour like this one instead.
Antelope Canyon has two main segments: Upper Antelope Canyon and Lower Antelope Canyon. Upper Antelope Canyon is known for its beam of light effect while Lower Antelope Canyon has a cool V shape effect and is more remote. Due to the popularity of Upper Antelope Canyon, none of the tours from Las Vegas stop there. The tour we booked had the option for Lower Antelope Canyon or Antelope Canyon X. Antelope Canyon X was opened more recently so it is less popular, making it a good choice for a trip from Vegas where you don’t have much time to spare. Since it’s less crowded, you’ll also have better photo opportunities at Antelope Canyon X. As with all Antelope Canyon tours, the tour is led by a Navajo guide.
The other highlight of this tour is a stop at Horseshoe Bend, a natural meander of the Colorado River. Horseshoe Bend is easily accessible with about a half-mile walk from the parking lot to the lookout.
Booking a Tour to Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend from Las Vegas
As I mentioned above, the easiest way to visit Antelope Canyon from Las Vegas is to book a tour. I recommend this option so you don’t have to worry about the long drive and can relax and take in the scenery. The day was about 15 hours long and most of it is spent in the van. Even so, it’s a good way to see a remote place that might stay on your bucket list longer than you’d like.
The tour started with early morning pick-ups around 5:00am. We were back on the Strip around 8:00pm. The tour included beverages, snacks, and lunch. The lunch was at Subway but it was nice that they let you order whatever you wanted including drinks, chips, and cookies!
Glen Canyon Dam
Our first stop on the tour was at Glen Canyon Dam, just over four hours from the Las Vegas Strip. The Glen Canyon Dam is an arch-gravity dam on the Colorado River completed in 1966. The dam forms Lake Powell, the second largest man-made lake in the United States. After this stop, we headed to lunch before our stop at Antelope Canyon X.
We arrived at Antelope Canyon X around 2:00pm for our 1.5 hour hiking tour. All tours are operated by Taadidiin Tours. The canyon got its name from the Xs carved into the sandstone created by rainfall and wind over millions of years. The tour started with a 3-mile drive to the mouth of Antelope Canyon X. We then hiked about 100 meters down to the canyon. At the bottom, there are two slot canyons that you get to tour.
I enjoyed visiting Antelope Canyon X because it was easily accessible which is important if you’re visiting in the heat of summer like we did! It also wasn’t super crowded so we were able to take our time walking around and taking pictures. I’ll let the photos speak for themselves.
After visiting Antelope Canyon, we stopped at Horseshoe Bend. It’s an easy half-mile hike from the parking lot to the lookout. The view of Horseshoe Bend was even better than it looks in pictures!
Lake Powell Overlook
Last but not least, we made one final stop at a Lake Powell Overlook. The white rock was a nice contrast from the red rock we had been seeing for most of the day.
If you have an extra day in the Las Vegas area, visiting Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend in one day is definitely doable. The easiest way to do so is by booking a guided tour. While it’s a long day, it’s a good way to see a lot quickly. Having visited Antelope Canyon X, I don’t feel the need to visit Lower Antelope Canyon, but I am still curious about Upper Antelope Canyon.