There are many ways you can see the Grand Canyon. You can take a ride down the Colorado River on a boat and marvel at the Canyon’s majestic rock faces from below, or you can take to the air to see the Canyon from a bird’s eye view. With a Grand Canyon helicopter tour, you get the best of both worlds, as many tours include a pontoon boat trip on the river.
Grand Canyon helicopter tours typically start from a location in Las Vegas. The distance to the Grand Canyon from Las Vegas is about 45 minutes flying time by helicopter, and on the way you’ll see sights such as the magnificent Hoover Dam, which has been an important part of American power generation for half a century. You’ll also fly over Lake Mead, the largest reservoir in the United States, created by the water impounded by the Hoover Dam.
The beauty of taking a helicopter ride over more conventional means of air travel comes into its own when you reach the canyon. Your pilot will hover over points of interest while a guide gives you all the facts. You will then be taken down almost vertically inside the canyon to a point just a few hundred meters above the raging Colorado, where you can then disembark to join a pontoon boat.
Whilst on the boat you will be truly amazed by the sheer size of the canyon, and with all the fascinating facts, such as how the canyon was created, and how it became such a deep ravine in a relatively short period of time in geological standards. Of course, just being on the water is an exciting experience in itself, as the Colorado is never still and peaceful. If you look up, you’ll see people walking on the famous Grand Canyon skywalk, a glass walkway that spans out across the Grand Canyon. From below you’ll barely be able to make out the people daring to walk across the glass.
Typically a boat ride on the Colorado will last about twenty minutes, and then you’ll be back on dry land where your helicopter will be waiting to whisk you back up to the top of the canyon again, in next to no time. This is a unique feature of taking a Grand Canyon helicopter ride, as no other type of aircraft can possibly land near the canyon. Not only do you get to see the beautiful landscape and magnificent features that make up the Grand Canyon, but also you can get out and explore, and really make the most of your time.
Once you’re on the ground at the top of the canyon, why not give the Grand Canyon glass walkway a go yourself? You’ve already seen what it looks like from the bottom of the canyon, so why not see if you have the stomach to look down through the glass to the rocks below. This will really test to see if you have nerves of steel, as only the brave can look down beneath their feet to a 6000-foot sheer drop.
One of the attractions at the top of the canyon is the Grand Canyon West Ranch. This is a real ranch from the old west, which was once used by outlaws. Now it’s an exciting attraction where real cowboys on horseback will entertain you with cattle herding and rope tricks. You can also take a ride in an authentic horse-drawn wagon, and even dine here with a western style barbecue meal. The ranch is a short ride away using the local bus service, but you get plenty of time as most Grand Canyon helicopter tours allow up to three and a half hours for your to explore the area.
After your trip to the canyon, you can then climb back aboard the helicopter and enjoy another trip back to Las Vegas, where you will be flown down the world famous Las Vegas Strip. If you’re lucky, you’ll get to do this at sunset, where the combination of the setting sun and Las Vegas light show really make for a stunning scene. Las Vegas is world-renowned for it’s fantastic casino lights, so seeing from the air is a real bonus on your Grand Canyon helicopter tour.
Once your flight is over, you’ll be taken back to your hotel where you’ll probably want a rest after such an eventful day, or if you’re still wide awake and the night is still young, why not head out to the casinos and see if you can make yourself a fortune!