Are you ready to have a fun time doing something exciting and different? Well, it’s time to celebrate New Year’s Eve in grand fashion by taking a helicopter tour of the Grand Canyon.
Christmas Day is the only day of the year when the tour helicopters don’t fly, so you’re cleared to go on New Year’s Eve or any other day over your break. However, holiday tours fill up fast, so you need to buy your tour as soon as you can.
Booking early also allows you to have a wider selection in available tours, and when you buy your tour online, you’ll get the lowest price available.
Las Vegas Grand Canyon Tours
Vegas is by far the most popular place to begin an air tour of the Canyon. Because of that, the Vegas tours offer a lot of options. All the flights give you an aerial view of the Colorado River, the Hoover Dam, and Lake Mead, while some even offer a flyover of The Strip.
An air-only tour is a good choice when you don’t have much time to spend on your tour or if you want to save money. These tours provide you with amazing aerial views of the Canyon, and then fly back to Vegas. If you do have more time, and these tours are by far the most popular, you can choose to land at the National Park.
Landing tours are so popular because they provide the most adventure. Your helicopter can land on top of the rim, on the bottom of the Canyon, or do both.
The top of the rim has scenic lookouts and hiking trails. For a little extra, you could purchase a ticket to the Skywalk. The Skywalk is a world famous structure that extends 70 feet beyond the edge of the Canyon and is suspended 4000 feet above the Canyon floor. If it sounds scary, don’t worry, it’s actually one of the most exciting things you could ever do, and it is well worth the price.
Another option is to land on the bottom of the Canyon where you can have a Champagne picnic before you float down the Colorado River on a relaxing boat tour. This landing tour is very popular and it’s a good one to take when you visit the Canyon.
South Rim helicopter tours take off from the small town of Tusayan, Arizona. If you’re in Arizona, you can drive yourself to Tusayan, but if you’re in Vegas, you’ll need to catch a flight there. The Tusayan airport is just outside of the main gates to the National Park. Even though there are no landing tours permitted at the South Rim, you’ll still find the tours there worthwhile. One of the air tours lasts 30 minutes and it flies to the North Rim and back to Tusayan. The extended tour, which I highly recommend, will do everything from the standard tour, while also taking you to the far eastern area of the Park. The longer flight lasts 50 minutes and flies over nearly 75 percent of the whole National Park.
Choose A Tour Package
You can book a basic or deluxe tour. Basic helicopters follow the same routes, but they use older choppers. Although the choppers are older, they are well maintained and safe for flight at all times.
However, if you can afford it, upgrading to a deluxe tour is a good idea. The helicopters used for these tours are designed specifically for sightseeing. The seats are bigger and more comfortable, plus they are arranged stadium style so you have a good view no matter where you sit. The cabins are oversized and climate controlled. The best thing about deluxe helicopters is that they have massive wraparound windscreens that provide fantastic panoramic viewing. The newer helicopters are also quieter inside, and smoother while in flight.
It’s going to be cold at the Canyon this year, so dress in some warm layers, with a winter jacket on over top. It can sometimes snow at the South Rim, so dress warm!
Touring the Canyon is a fun way to spend New Year’s Eve. Remember to book your tour as soon as possible or you may get shut out. For the best chances of getting the tour you want, secure your seats with your credit card by buying your tour online at least two weeks in advance if you can. You will get the best prices, and you won’t have to worry about losing your reservation.
Grand Canyon National Park specialist Beth Adams advises readers check out this selection of the best heli tours as well as this page which lists the latest savings and promotions: http://www.grandcanyonhelicopter.org/grand-canyon-helicopter-tour-coupons.htmlGoogle+