Fantastic Photo Ideas for your Family Holiday Card

Need some inspiration for your Christmas and Holiday photo sessions? The holidays should be special every year, so it’s important to send your friends and distant family members a holiday card that will really impress. After all, you deserve a prime spot on the mantle. While there are so many classic holiday shots and family poses, nothing compares to the natural beauty of the desert, especially in the historic landmarks of Nevada and Arizona. Why not mix up your family holiday card style and add some southwest flair? Here are a few of our favorite Southwest spots that are sure to capture your imagination and result in some amazing photos.

Grand Canyon West Rim

Noting screams Happy Holidays from the Southwest like a photo captured at the Grand Canyon. Between the entertainment capital of the world, Las Vegas, and Grand Canyon’s South Rim lies a place known simply as the Grand Canyon West Rim. Here, you’re surrounded by the Tribal Indian reservation of The Hualapai from the ground to the sky. Home of the world-famous glass bridge, the Skywalk, the West Rim is not something to be looked down upon. It sees nearly 1 million travelers each year and is a sight to be reckoned with, showcasing the result of millions of years of weathering and erosion. Here are few of our favorite poses from the Grand Canyon West Rim.

Monument Valley

Next on our list is the breathtaking Monument Valley, which is part of the Navajo Nation reservation, a 640-mile drive from Los Angeles, 175 miles northeast of Flagstaff, Ariz., about 25 miles north of the sleepy town of Kayenta. The valley’s most famous mesas, buttes and spires stand within the boundaries of the tribal park. The landscape transforms from non-descript rolling hills into towering rust-colored sandstone skyscrapers that seem to float on the horizon. You will be so mesmerized by the natural beauty of Monument Valley that you might forget your go to holiday card poses, so here’s some photo inspiration to keep you on track.


Havasu Falls

Havasu Falls is a remarkable waterfall located in the Havasupai Indian Reservation inside the Grand Canyon National Park. Imagine beautiful clear blue vibrant water set against striking red rocks and a wide sandy beach covered in shady cottonwood trees. Perfect spot for photos, right? Here are some Havasu Falls favorites to get your imagination soaring with excitement for your visit and photos.

Mesquite Sand Dunes at Death Valley

Lovers of Sand Dunes will find in Death Valley National Park five different dune fields: Eureka, Ibex, Mesquite Flat, Panamint, and Saline Valley. The Eureka Dunes are the highest. Ibex Dunes and Panamint Dunes are the most remote because roads (unpaved) come within sight of them but do not actually reach them (the Saline Valley Dunes are quite remote, too, accessed only by long, rocky roads). The dunes at Mesquite Flat are the easiest to reach and see, and they are consequently the best-known. The curves and colors of these dunes are as graceful as those in any other range of sand dunes, and are the perfect backdrop for beautiful photographs, especially for your unique holiday photos. Here are some golden sand inspired photos to begin your creative journey.



The Watchman at Zion

The Watchman is the most photographed icon in Zion National Park for a couple of reasons.  First, it is a beautiful and shapely rock mountain that happens to “face” the valley from the South and it glows at sunset.  Second, it is near the South Visitor Center and is easily seen from the paved and much used Pa’rus Trail. Most photographers feel obliged to have a good Watchman shot in their collection, the challenge is how to put your personal touch on this iconic shot. Luckily, we have you covered with some examples for your holiday card shots here.


Essentials to Pack for Your Arizona Vacation

Top Private Tours from Las Vegas Grand Canyon South Rim DETOURS

Even the best-laid vacation plans can be easily dashed by something as simple as forgetting to pack the signature comforts and small necessities that you, well, need. Frustratingly, it always seems to be the obvious, everyday things that you use all the time that get left out of the suitcase and consequently left behind. It’s especially frustrating when you’re traveling to a new destination like the Southwest and you’re not clear what the packing essentials should be. But don’t worry—we’ve come up with this handy list to ensure that exact scenario doesn’t happen. Whether you’re planning a visit to the Grand Canyon, the Red Rocks of Sedona or enjoying the glittering charm of the Arizona cities here is a list of everything you need to pack for your Arizona vacation.

Sunscreen, Sun Hat and Sunglasses

First things first, you only need to have experienced the Arizona sun one time before you realize how strong it really is. Hiking, walking through trails and laying by the pool all require protection from the sun, especially the Arizona sun. Pack a wide-brimmed hat, which is preferable over a baseball cap, to cover your entire face. Make sure you pack sunscreen that is SPF 30 or higher over any exposed skin, including the back of your neck.  Lastly, don’t forget to protect your eyes from the Arizona sunshine with sunglasses. Polarized lens will help you see views more clearly. Purchase sunglass straps if you plan to be on the water – it can be frustrating watching your new sunglasses float downstream or from the edge of the Grand Canyon without you.

Layers of Clothing

The Arizona desert temperatures can fluctuate 30-40 degrees in one day, so be sure to pack light layers for daytime and others that will keep you warm in the evenings, including a winter hat, when the sun sets and cooler air moves in. At the top of the rim, average summer temps can be in the 80s F during the day and drop to the 50s at night. However, temperatures by the river at the bottom of the canyon can exceed 100F and even reaching 120F. Be prepared with the right equipment and by being extremely well-hydrated. In addition to the layers of clothes, we strongly recommend packing a light jacket or coat, especially if you’re visiting the Grand Canyon. On the flipside, if you’re visiting during the spring and summer months make sure you pack plenty of light clothing such as shorts, light shirts, and plenty of weightless summer dresses.

Water + Snacks

You’re in the desert, so the first thing you should make sure to purchase plenty of (once you land of course) is H2O. One of the biggest mistakes Arizona visitors make is not staying properly hydrated. The second thing to make sure you pack or purchase upon arrival are healthy snacks, preferably snacks that will fuel you with energy. Granola bars, mixed nuts, dried fruit or fresh fruit and nut butter are all great things to keep on hand. Day tours to the Grand Canyon, Apache Trail, Sedona or catching some rays by the pool will take the energy out of you faster than you can imagine. Keep yourself satiated and hydrated to keep powering through your Arizona trip!

Chapstick + Lip Balm

While your lips are busy talking about the gorgeous sights you’re taking in they are also getting plenty of attention from the Arizona sunshine. In addition to keeping your skin protected with sunscreen, make sure pack some quality chapstick or lip balm with SPF protection. This will save you from sunburnt lips or windburned lips depending on which tours and adventures you decided to embark upon.

Hiking Boots, Gym Shoes & Sandals

A good pair of flip fops or sandals are essential to your Arizona trip, especially if you plan on hitting the pool or taking some light walks through the shopping centers of the city. If you’re planning on hiking and taking plenty of tours, make sure to pack a pair of supportive, waterproof and breathable hiking boots. These will allow you to navigate wet and dry trails with ease and enable you to explore farther than you maybe would have. They also protect your feet from unwanted visitors such as cactus needles, rocks on trails and possibly even snake bites. Don’t forget to pack a few extra pair of socks as well!

Camera + Cellphone

While most of us rarely leave home without our cellphone (at least intentionally) make sure you pack your cellphone and charger before you head out on your trip to the Southwest. Make sure to also pack your favorite camera so you can capture all the sights and wonder of Arizona. Especially if you are visiting some of the Arizona gems such as Antelope Canyon, Sedona, The Grand Canyon, Tombstone or The Apache Trail.

Bathing Suit

Arizona residents consider bathing suits an essential staple to survive the heat and layer up/layer down as needed. Pack that favorite suit and plan to wear it to the pool or as an additional layer under your hiking clothes.

Backpack/Travel Purse

For hiking we recommend packing a lightweight backpack that will be comfortable when you’re carrying medium to heavy loads. Whether it’s a backpack or travel purse make sure it has enough room for all the essentials for your trip, especially water and sunscreen.

Water Mister or Bandana

Keep cool with a portable mister that can make climbing the red rocks of Sedona or The Apache Trail feel a lot more manageable. A bandana you can soak with water is also a great option to pack.


In addition to all of the physical items you need to pack for your Arizona adventure, don’t forget to bring your energy and excitement to the trails and streets of the Southwest!

Ten Terrific Tombstone Facts

Ten Tombstone Facts Arizona

Deep in the southeastern corner of Arizona is a historic place known as the home of the famous wild west silver boom, whiskey fueled gun fights and the most famous saloons. This epic southwest landmark known as “The Town Too Tough to Die” is Tombstone. You might think you know everything about this Arizona gem from books and movies, but nothing compares to seeing this old western town in person.  Today, Tombstone is home to around 1500 year-round residents who enjoy the wonderful climate the high desert has to offer and believe in preserving the history and heritage of the Wildest Town in the West. Before you head to the scenic southwest trails for your Tombstone tour, here are some terrific facts about Tombstone…

1. At its peak, Tombstone is said to have been the fastest-growing city between St. Louis and San Francisco. There were over one hundred saloons, numerous restaurants, a large red-light district, schools, churches, newspapers, and one of the first public swimming pools in Arizona (which is still used today).

2. There were actually five Earps. They were Virgil, Morgan, Wyatt, Warren, and James

3. Tombstone’s post office was established on December 2, 1878 and has yet to be discontinued.

4. The most famous event in Tombstone’s history was the famed Gunfight at the OK Corral, which didn’t actually happen at the corral,       but in a vacant lot on Fremont Street. On October 26, 1881, members of the “Cowboys” had a run-in with Wyatt, Virgil, and Morgan Earp with help from Wyatt’s friend Doc Holliday. 24 seconds and 30 shots later, Billy Clanton, Tom, and Frank McLaury were mortally wounded. In many people’s opinion, it was this one event that has kept Tombstone alive for all these years.

5. There were two newspapers in Tombstone, The Tombstone Epitaph edited by John Clum, and The Tombstone Daily Nugget founded by H.M. Woods in 1880. The Epitaph took a Republican view on events in town while Nugget was supported by the Democrats.

6. There was an ice cream parlour in Tombstone and it was very popular with the locals, including Wyatt Earp who was quite fond of ice-cream.

7. There were a few theaters in town, the most famous of them being Schieffelin Hall and the Bird Cage Theatre

8. Sirens were used in Tombstone to mark the beginning of a new shift for the miners. After the gunfight occurred on Oct 26, 1881, sirens went off from the Vizna mine and miners poured up onto the street, armed and ready.

9. Saloons were open 24 hours a day in Tombstone. These included The Oriental, The Crystal Palace Saloon, The Eagle Saloon, and The Alhambra. Saloons could be quite decadent and served Whiskey and Brandy, six-year-old Kentucky Apple Brandy, Gin Rum, Sherry, Port, English Ale, Scotch, Millers Extra, and 26 different imported wines. The Oriental bragged about having piano and violin concerts every night and was lit with chandeliers.

10. Restaurants in Tombstone such as The Can Can, The Russ House, The Elite House, and The Maison Doree catered to all tastes, including fine dining. Fresh shrimp and oysters were brought in from California to Tucson in refrigerated train cars, then transported down to Tombstone.

Southwest Sights We’re Thankful For

It’s that time of year when we take a moment during our busy lives to stop and ponder the many things we’re thankful for. Friends, family, memories, and special places that warm our soul. The beauty and wonder of the Southwest is certainly something that residents and visitors alike can be thankful for, but in light of the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, we wanted to share some of the most majestic sights in the southwest that we are thankful for.

Grand Canyon

Few sights are as instantly recognizable or speak more fully to the beauty of the southwest than the Grand Canyon. Standing on the South Rim in 1903, President Teddy Roosevelt proclaimed it “one of the great sights every American should see.”
The Grand Canyon is 277 miles long, 18 miles wide and a mile deep. It was created at least 17 million years ago as the Colorado River and its tributaries sliced through layer after layer of rock cutting their channels while the Colorado Plateau was uplifted. If you venture beneath the overlooks, an overwhelming sensation unfolds as you are immersed into the splendid beauty of this national treasure. Listening to the breeze pass through layers of 2 billion-year-old rock s allows you to feel a new perspective on nature and life. Experiencing sunrise and sunset at the most majestic section of the Grand Canyon, the South Rim, will leave you feeling thankful for years to come.

Bryce Canyon

There is no place like Bryce Canyon and we’re thankful for that in itself. This historic site houses the largest collection of Hoodoos (odd-shaped pillars of rock left standing from the forces of erosion) An imagination of wonder will serve you when visiting Bryce Canyon National Park. Discover the colors, shapes and long views in Bryce Canyon National Park. Immerse your senses with views of the Virgin River Gorge, the Escalante Grand Staircase National Monument and amazing panoramic views of the famous “hoodoos” and 100 mile vistas across Escalante Grand Staircase National Monument. Whether you’re watching the sunrise or the stars shine you will be thankful for visiting this forest of stone in the heart of the southwest.

Eldorado Canyon

At first glance, Eldorado Canyon visitors may not be aware they’re standing on ground that at one time epitomized the Wild West. A region abundant in riches and plagued by lawlessness, greed, and murder, the history of this Southern Nevada treasure was crafted in blood and gold. Though the days of harboring Civil War deserters may be a thing of the past, the resonance of an unruly population can still be felt echoing throughout the canyon walls.

Eldorado Canyon is a canyon in southern Clark County, Nevada famed for its rich silver and gold mines. The canyon was named in 1857 by steamboat entrepreneur Captain George Alonzo Johnson when gold and silver was discovered here. It drains into the Colorado River at the former site of Nelson’s Landing. The town of Nelson lies in the upper reach of the canyon. Eldorado Canyon Mine Tours operates mid-way in the canyon at the Techatticup Mine one of the oldest and most productive mines in the canyon. We’re thankful for the opportunity to go back in history and experience the area’s richest and oldest gold mine with a simple tour of Eldorado Canyon and the Techatticup Mine.

Antelope Canyon

This historic sight is comprised of two main areas within the canyon, Upper & Lower Antelope Canyon. Upper Antelope Canyon is also called Tsé bighánílíní, “the place where water runs through rocks” by the Navajo. It is the most frequently visited by residents and tourists for two reasons. First, its entrance and entire length are at ground level, requiring no climbing. Second, this portion of the canyon allows beams of direct sunlight radiating down from openings in the top of the canyon, creating the most incredible moment you can experience in nature.

Lower Antelope Canyon, called Hazdistazí, or “spiral rock arches” by the Navajo Indians, are located a few miles away. There are so many tantalizing views and backdrops that you instantly feel transported into a serene southwest peace. In addition to Antelope Canyon, we are thankful for the scenic one-mile walk to the breathtaking Horseshoe Bend Overlook which is highlighted by awe-inspiring views into this deeply carved channel and the Colorado River below. Photos from the edge of this natural beauty are widespread across the world and are nothing short of amazing.

The Most Spectacular Places To See Fall Colors In The Southwest USA

As winter looms on the East Coast in America, the Southwest USA is beginning to experience the most incredible fall colors you’ll ever see. From Arizona to Utah, the American West is the best place to experience autumn. Here are our favorite spots to tour on a fall getaway:

Canyon de Chelly, Arizona

Late October through mid-November is the perfect time to see the cottonwood trees change color at Canyon de Chelly in Northeastern Arizona. The foliage of the cottonwoods are an illustrious green in the summer months and turn to a brilliant yellow in the fall. Members of the Popular family, cottonwood trees are a highlight for visitors on a Canyon de Chelly tour. Enjoy sunny but cooler temperatures that average about 62° in the autumn months while hiking into this incredible National Monument in Navajo Nation. The park has two rim drives and ten overlooks to view the beautiful Arizona fall colors. Take a private, overnight tour of Canyon de Chelly to get the full experience of the Navajo Nation.

Cottonwoods at Canyon de Chelly

Route 66 in Flagstaff, Arizona

Cross historic Route 66 off your bucket list and experience the spectacular autumn hues of the Ponderosa Forest while visiting Flagstaff, AZ. Celebrating its 90th anniversary this year, the “Mother Road” takes you through the main drag of town littered with things to do and see along the way. Get your kicks at Galaxy diner or take a tour of historic downtown.




The North Rim Campground is open from mid-May to mid-October. Operated by the National Park Service.
There are no hook-ups, however, there is a dump station within the campground. Pets are allowed, but must be leashed at all times, and may not be left unattended. Wood and charcoal fires are only permitted in provided campsite grills. No gathering of down wood – wood may be purchased at the general store. Coin operated laundry and showers are located at the entrance to the campground. Accessible campsites and restrooms are available.
Reservations may be made through the National Recreation Reservation Service by calling
1-877-444-6777 or online at It is possible to check at the campground for the slight chance of an availability. Campsites are $18-$25. Golden Age or Access passport holders pay only ½ price year round (passport number is needed when making reservation and passport holder must be camping at the site). A maximum of two vehicles, six people, three tents are allowed per site. (A vehicle, which is towing a trailer, pop-up, tent trailer, fifth wheel, or a motor home pulling a vehicle, is considered two vehicles.)
After mid-October, weather permitting, a limited number of campsites at the North Rim Campground with limited services (portable toilets) will be available on a first-come, first-served basis until snow closes Highway 67. Hikers and cross-country skiers will be permitted to use the park’s group campsites throughout the winter months if they have obtained a permit through the park’s Backcountry Information Center.

Grand Canyon North Rim

At over 8,000 feet in elevation, the Grand Canyon North Rim is one of the first places in Arizona to see the leaves change. Mostly quaking aspen, oak and walnut trees can be seen shedding their summer colors for a gorgeous yellow and orange palette. Although the North Rim gets just 1/10th the number of visitors that the South Rim does, it’s still important to plan your trip in advance as the season is relatively short – May through October only. Inquire about private tours to get the most out of your Grand Canyon Experience.

Oak Creek Canyon near Sedona, Arizona

The bright yellow and deep orange of fall are a sight to see again the brilliant red rocks of Sedona, Arizona. Oak Creek Canyon is a well known river gorge between Sedona and Flagstaff often traveled by visitors on the way to Grand Canyon National Park. Sometimes called the Grand Canyon’s cousin, Oak Creek Canyon is lined with sycamore and oak trees that . West Fork Oak Creek trail is a favorite hiking spot for many of our tour guides and is still relatively unknown to non-locals. From amber to crimson, the best fall colors can be experienced on a day trip to Oak Creek Canyon

Bryce Canyon National Park

The stunning orange of Bryce Canyon’s hoodoos garden provide a panoramic like no other in the fall months. September, October and November offer smaller crowds and cooler weather. The brilliant golds and deep reds of the quaking aspen and majestic oak are some of the most spectacular fall foliage in the American West. Take a day trip from Las Vegas or book a private escape to see all Utah has to offer. 


Where are your favorite places to see fall colors? Comment below and let us know!

These Beautiful Death Valley Overlooks Are Just What Your Instagram Needs Right Now

Known for its salt flats and scorching heat, Death Valley National Park is home to the lowest point in North America. This below level sea basin is visited by over million tourists every year because there’s so much to see at this desolate National Park. And when you’re ready to plan your trip, put these overlooks on your list – your Instagram won’t be able to get enough:

Artist’s Palette

Artist's Palette, Death Valley/Pixabay
Artist’s Palette, Death Valley/Pixabay

Artist’s Palette can be found along Artist’s Drive at the foot of Black Mountain. This scenic view is recognized for the unbelievable colors painted onto the rolling hills. The colors are formed by the oxidation of metals – specifically iron and manganese compounds that produce red, yellow, pink, and purple tints.


TIP: Play with the saturation tool on Instagram to get the perfect hue!

Zabriskie Point

Zabriskie Point/Pixabay
Zabriskie Point/Pixabay

This panoramic overlook is named after Christian Brevoort Zabriskie, the general manager of the Pacific Coast Borax Company which used a team of twenty mules to move borax from its mines in Death Valley National Park. The erosional landscape of Zabriskie Point is sure to get those double taps on Instagram.

Death Valley National Park/Pixabay
Death Valley National Park/Pixabay

HINT: turn up the Lux to get the right contrast.

Badwater Basin

Badwater Basin/Pixabay
Badwater Basin/Pixabay

Covering nearly 200 square miles, the salt flats of Badwater Basin are among the largest protected salt flats in the world. The hexagonal shapes of the salt flats are a dream for Instagrammers – and the “Sea Level” sign about 280 feet above your head is pretty spectacular. Be warned – there is virtually no shade on the hike out to the farthest viewpoint at Badwater Basin so heat and lighting are a big factor when photographing this area.


Mesquite Sand Dunes

Mesquite Sand Dunes/Pixabay
Mesquite Sand Dunes/Pixabay

Nestled next to Stovepipe Wells, the Mesquite Sand Dunes are an insane backdrop for any photographer, amateur or professional. Reaching up to 100 feet, these dunes “move” with the wind that comes off the nearby mountains. The sand comes from eroded washes and canyons in Death Valley.


TIP: If you want that incredible golden glow, plan your trip around sunrise or sunset.

Approximately two and a half hours west of Las Vegas, Death Valley National Park is a great day trip away from the Strip. Stay hydrated! Don’t forget to bring lots of water and snacks – there aren’t many fuel and rest stops along the way. Book a day tour and get all the benefits of having a tour guide and unlimited bottled water during your trip to Death Valley National Park. This National Park is just what your Instagram feed needs.


Make The Most Of The Grand Canyon This Summer

The average high temperature in the Southwest in June, July and August is just over 100 degrees so escaping to a cooler climate is popular when school lets out for the summer. One of the most visited destinations is the magnificent Grand Canyon. In fact, the Grand Canyon National Park was visited by more than 5 million people in 2016. While still warm for many travelers, the Grand Canyon South Rim has an average high temperature of about 81 degrees with the floor of the Grand Canyon being much hotter in the summer months. To make the most of your summer vacation, here are our top five travel tips when exploring the Grand Canyon:


  1. Stay hydrated

Proper water consumption is key to a comfortable and enjoyable trip to the Grand Canyon. Whether you’re hiking into the Canyon or only stopping at one viewpoint be sure to sip on that H2O throughout the day. According to the National Park Service, if you are hiking into the Grand Canyon you should plan on bringing four liters of water per day. Don’t forget DETOURS provides complimentary and unlimited bottled during day tours so you won’t get dehydrated.

Grand Canyon Migratory Path/Pixabay

2. Wear sunscreen

Even on cloudy days it’s important to lather up with sunscreen in Arizona. The summertime is when ultraviolet rays are at their highest in the Grand Canyon State. Higher SPFs are readily available at drugstores in Arizona so don’t be afraid to stock up and reapply every hour. The US Department of Health & Human Services suggestsa comprehensive approach to skin protection […] which includes sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, protective clothing and shade.”

Grand Canyon, Arizona/Pixabay

3. Bring cell phone and camera chargers

Don’t get all the way to the Grand Canyon only to realize your phone or camera is dead! Be sure to bring a phone charger and/or camera charger so you can take all the selfies and family photos you want. If you are taking a DETOUR, phone chargers are provided for iPhones and Androids – and some vehicles even include free wi-fi!

Grand Canyon National Park/Pixabay

4. Plan ahead

There’s a lot to see at the Grand Canyon and many first time visitors miss out because they are too busy waiting in lines or trying to find parking. Plan ahead by mapping out the parking lots and viewpoints you want to see. You can purchase tickets and helicopter tours in advance. If you plan on hiking into the Grand Canyon, it’s a good idea to ensure you have the proper equipment and permits necessary. Havasu Falls is one of the most beautiful hikes in the Grand Canyon, but also one of the most difficult to get permitting for. Ask a reservations specialist about planning ahead for your Grand Canyon trip: 866-438-6877

Colorado River near Havasu Falls/Pixabay
Colorado River near Havasu Falls/Pixabay

5. Stay overnight

The summer heat can wear you out so catching some zzz’s is critical to appreciating the Grand Canyon National Park, especially if you’re traveling with kids. Consider staying the night at or near the Grand Canyon. There are many lodging options at the Grand Canyon South Rim including the El Tovar Lodge. Another favorite is the Grand Canyon Railway & Hotel in Williams, AZ. You can go to the DETOURS website to see our overnight and multi-day tour options. 

Grand Canyon National Park Mather Point at Sunset/NPS/M.Quinn
Grand Canyon National Park Mather Point at Sunset/NPS/M.Quinn

Do you have your own travel tips you swear by? Comment below and let us know!

Five Best Arizona Canyons To See This Summer

Arizona is often known for its sunny weather and beautiful desert but there are many more topographical features to love about the 48th state. Arizona is home to dozens of canyons and here are five to enjoy this summer:

1. Antelope Canyon

Antelope Canyon is one of the most photographed slot canyons in the world. As stunning as it is mysterious, Antelope Canyon is divided into two canyons: Upper Antelope Canyon, often called ‘The Crack,’ and Lower Antelope Canyon referred to as ‘The Corkscrew.’ Antelope Canyon is located on Navajo grounds just east of Page, AZ. To learn more about this area, we suggest reading the Difference Between Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon: A Tourist’s Guide here

Antelope Canyon was formed by the erosion of a geological formation called Navajo Sandstone. The erosion is mostly caused by flash flooding, especially during the monsoon season. The ray of light often seen in photos of Antelope Canyon is particularly bright in the summer usually around lunchtime.

Only have a day?  If you are departing from Phoenix, then visit our Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend Tours from Phoenix to see the itinerary.

 2. Canyon de Chelly

Canyon de Chelly is a National Monument on the Navajo Nation Reservation in Eastern Arizona. In this expansive park, you will see Native American ruins and the famed Spider Rock spire. Summer is an excellent time to visit Canyon de Chelly because the Visitor’s Center offers free guided hikes each weekend.

We suggest booking a private tour for Canyon de Chelly as a Navajo guide is required to join you in the canyon. Visit our Luxury Private Tours page to learn more and contact us about your dream vacation! 

3. Oak Creek Canyon

Sometimes called the canyon cousin to the Grand Canyon, Oak Creek Canyon is a river gorge nestled between Sedona and Flagstaff. Slide Rock State Park is located at the mouth of the canyon and is an excellent place to cool off in the hot summer months. Slide Rock is named for its natural water slide formed by the slippery rock bed at the base of Oak Creek Canyon. Don’t forget your water shoes!

4. Canyon Lake

So Canyon Lake isn’t technically a canyon but it’s definitely worth a look while visiting Arizona. Canyon Lake is a reservoir that was formed when the Salt River was dammed in the early 1900s.

Visitors most often talk about the unusual rock formations and hidden coves at this lake. Another favorite is an afternoon float on the Dolly Steamboat. Perfect for water-skiing, fishing, picnicking, or just leisurely summer sightseeing, Canyon Lake is a highlight of Arizona’s Apache Trail.  Ready to experience the wonder of the Superstition Mountains? Check out our Apache Trail Tours from Phoenix

5. Grand Canyon

Of course, we have to mention the Grand Canyon when talking about Arizona canyons! Often considered one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, the Grand Canyon expects over 5 million visitors this year, many of them in the summer while on vacation. We highly recommend taking a guided tour so you don’t have to worry about parking and waiting in line.  Learn more about Grand Canyon Vacations and discover which Rim you want to visit next! 

There are many viewpoints to choose from at the Grand Canyon, but the South Rim has the deepest and widest views of the canyon. Many guided tours can show you the best viewpoints depending on the time of day.

If you are feeling adventurous, a helicopter ride is an excellent way to stay cool and get a unique perspective of the grandeur of the Grand Canyon. Check out our Colors & Canyons Ground and Helicopter Tours.

Unique Geologic Destinations In Arizona: Part 2

In the most recent article, you learned about two of the most gorgeous geological destinations in Arizona—Coal Mine Canyon and The Vermillion Cliffs, specifically The Wave at The Vermillion Cliffs. It’s true, these are two of the most beautiful, natural destinations in Arizona, and you won’t want to miss them, but they are certainly not the only fabulous geological destinations. As you are planning your hiking, photography, or outdoorsy trip to Arizona, you will also want to make sure to visit Painted Desert and Antelope Canyon. Here is everything you need to know about these two destinations.

Painted Desert

Painted Desert

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Unique Geologic Destinations In Arizona: Part 1

The great state of Arizona is home to many unique man-made attractions including some of the best shopping malls, golf courses, and museums celebrating Arizona’s diverse history, but what many people also need to understand about Arizona is that it is chalk full of distinctive geological destinations that will take your breath away. If you are an adventurer, a landscape photographer, or just a lover of the great outdoors, here are two geological destinations you must see when in Arizona.

Coal Mine Canyon

 Coal Mine Canyon

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