Besides its major tourist cities, the U.S. has spectacular destinations of natural beauty. Antelope Canyon & Horseshoe Bend are two of those places. Once I saw Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend in photos, I knew I had to see it in person. Antelope Canyon is a slot canyon located on Navajo land in Page, AZ. A slot canyon is a narrow canyon that is formed from water filling the cracks of rocks. Slot canyons get deeper over time as water consistently fills its cracks on the surface or "slots". When light shines into the canyon through the slots, it reflects off the sandstone rock and the rock appears to turn different colors such as pink, purple or brown depending on the amount of sunlight, the time of day and the season you visit. Horseshoe Bend is a curve of the Colorado River shaped like a horseshoe that formed when water carved through the rock. Both destinations are examples of how creation has transformed over time. So when I found out I had enough reward miles to fly for a free round-trip, I immediately booked my ticket.
There is an airport in Page, AZ but don’t fly into it because it’s more expensive to fly into Page since it’s a small airport in a remote location. The cheapest option is to fly into Phoenix, AZ or Las Vegas, NV which are both 3-4 hours away from Page, AZ so you can rent a car and drive there. I flew into Phoenix and while I was in Phoenix, I decided to check out the Desert Botanical Garden which is a great place to see different types of cactus up close. They also give discounted tickets for students so you know I took advantage of that!
Antelope Canyon is divided into Upper Antelope Canyon and Lower Antelope Canyon. I visited Lower Antelope Canyon and there are only 2 tour companies that tour in Lower Antelope Canyon – Ken’s Tours and Dixie Ellis’ Tours. They are both Navajo owned and all tour guides are Navajo. You can book ahead online or buy tickets in person. Since I came in the offseason, I bought my ticket in person from Dixie Ellis’ Lower Antelope Canyon Tours. My tour guide was Armondo who told us some Navajo history and also took bomb photos of me inside the canyon!
During my stay, I ended up going to Horseshoe Bend twice because the view was that awesome. Even though I went on this trip solo, I never felt alone. At Antelope Canyon, you must be accompanied by a Navajo guide to enter the canyon so you will meet others in your tour group. At Horseshoe Bend there were many travelers there each time who helped me take my photos. Then when I went kayaking, a professional accompanied me and we kayaked on the river together.
Check out more photos from Antelope Canyon & Horseshoe Bend below (click on the photos to view in full size):
Lola is a multimedia journalist. This blog is a space for her to share budget travel tips and her travel experiences.