Christmas is a busy time of year for tour operators at the Grand Canyon. So, keep in mind, if you’re planning a trip then that includes a helicopter flight, you need to get your tour booked in advance. It doesn’t matter if you depart from Vegas or the South Rim, the tours are going to fill up fast, so it’s a good idea to get your tour booked within the next two weeks or so.
You can book your tour for any day of the holiday except for Christmas Day. Flights out of Vegas can be air-only or landing tours, while flights from the South Rim in Arizona are all air-only tours.
Tours Departing From Vegas
The tours that depart from Vegas are the most popular because tour there is a big choice in tours and options available. All the air tours provide spectacular scenic views including an amazing aerial view of the Hoover Dam and Lake Mead on the way to the Canyon. If you book an air-only tour, you will fly over the rim and return to Vegas, but if you buy a landing tour, you will stop at the Canyon and explore it on the ground too.
If you want to take a landing tour, you should think about booking one that lands on the Canyon floor. For instance, one fun bottom landing tour comes with a champagne picnic and a scenic boat ride on the Colorado River.
There are other landing tours that take you to the top of the rim where you can view scenic vistas from lookout points, and walk out on the Skywalk viewing platform. The Skywalk is a huge platform that hangs over the side of the rim so you can walk out 70 feet past the edge. When you stand on the platform, you’ll be able to look through the transparent floor to the bottom of the Canyon 4000 feet below you.
Booking A Basic Or Deluxe Vegas Tour
When you start looking at tours, you’ll notice they are available as deluxe or basic versions. The basic tours lift off from Boulder City, which is just outside of Vegas, and the deluxe tours take off from The Strip, but after that, they both follow the same flight path on the tours. The deluxe tours even come with complimentary transportation to and from the helipad in a limousine. EcoStar 130 choppers are used for the deluxe tours, which are bigger helicopters than those used on basic tours. The EcoStar offers superior sightseeing thanks to the huge wraparound windshield and the seating arrangement that allows every seat to have a great view. The deluxe tour does cost more, but you’ll be treated to the best experience possible on your flight, so the expense is well worth it.
Arizona Tours To The South Rim
You won’t be able to take a landing tour at the South Rim, but these tours make up for that because they are so scenic since this part of the Canyon is mostly remote wilderness. These tours depart from the South Rim and fly to the isolated North Rim before heading back, however, if you book a 50-minute tour, your helicopter flies over to the eastern border of the park too. Basic and deluxe tours are on offer at the South Rim, and while these tours begin in Arizona, if you’re in Vegas you can add an airplane ride to your package that takes you from Vegas to Arizona where you begin your helicopter flight.
A South Rim tour is an excellent choice if you are a nature lover and want to see beautiful vistas. When you take this longer tour, you’ll fly over 75 percent of the park, in fact, you’ll see scenery that many visitors to the Canyon don’t have the chance to see, so touring the South Rim is well worth it.
Dress For The Weather
It’s best to dress in layers when you visit the Canyon over Christmas because it can be chilly during the winter months. There is climate control in the helicopters, but you still might want to wear a sweater to stay nice and comfortable during your flight. Dressing in layers is best when you take a landing tour because it might be chilly, or it could be unexpectedly warm on the day of your tour.
Get Set For Unique Christmas Memories
The Canyon is amazing any season of the year, but the Christmas holiday is especially magical. Don’t forget to buy your tour early, and do it online to get the best deal. Buying online with your credit card locks in your tour so your seats will be available on tour day. Whatever tour you decide to take, you’ll have the chance to see one of America’s most beautiful natural landmarks on a thrilling air tour, and there is no better way to celebrate the Christmas holiday if you want to make special memories for your family.