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11 Day America’s Spectacular Canyonlands

Tour of Distinction - 11 Days (10 Nights) | $4,955
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An incredible 11 day tour from Salt Lake City through the Arches, Canyonlands, Grand Canyon, Antelope Canyon, Bryce Canyon, and Zion National Park learning about the incredible geology and the cultural history of the Navajo peoples closely associated with this land from ancient times. These magnificent parks will enable you to see unique geological formations all within the region of Southern Utah and neighbouring Arizona. Spend 11 magical days exploring cascading petrified sand dunes, vibrant pine forests, and sunset-red deserts in seven national parks of the Southwest.

Day 1: Arrival in Salt Lake City, UT

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In 1847, Brigham Young famously led Mormon pioneers into the valley declaring, "This is the right place." Later, the joining of the transcontinental railroad and the Pony Express route in Salt Lake City cemented the area’s importance as an economic centre in the development of the American West. Increasingly, SLC is giving travellers reasons to stay and enjoy the city, thanks to the comfortable urbanism in a thriving metro area and the convenience and affordability of a place that hasn’t yet been “discovered” by the masses. A compact downtown makes for easy walking among the many restaurants, bars and other attractions in Salt Lake City.


Day 2: Salt Lake City - Moab, UT

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Enjoy an easy four-hour drive through the majestic Wasatch Mountains over Soldier Summit and through the dinosaur capital of Utah to Arches National Park. Arches National Park provides an opportunity to explore a few of over 2,000 arches found within its borders. Some have described this park as timeless, dream-like, or from out of this world. With a variety of geological features including fault lines, petrified sand dunes, arches, bridges, balanced rocks, spires, and many others, the list of possibilities are endless in this landscape of ever-changing formations. This afternoon, explore Park Avenue, Windows Section, Balanced Rock, Courthouse Wash, and other areas on the front south side of the park. Delicate Arch, Landscape Arch, and Double Arch are all on the list of must-see formations. Along with these well-known arches, if time allows, you will explore the Cove of Caves, Garden of Eden, Petrified Dunes, Fiery Furnace Viewpoint and Double O Arch.


Day 3: Arches National Park, UT

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Visit Delicate Arch before the crowds arrive and later travel further into the park to explore Landscape Arch, Double O Arch, and other outstanding natural formations. From sun up to sun down, this park offers you the opportunity to immerse yourself in a landscape like nowhere else on this earth. This afternoon, you will explore the other side of Moab with a scenic drive and hike along the Colorado River to the fantastic Petroglyph Panels, Dinosaur Tracks, and other geological formations found just outside the park.


Day 4: Moab - Goulding, UT 

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Imagine wave after wave of deep canyons, towering mesas, pinnacles, cliffs and spires stretching across 527 square miles. This is Canyonlands National Park, formed by the currents and tributaries of Utah's Green and Colorado Rivers. Canyonlands is home to many different types of landscapes, including one of the West's most photographed landforms, Mesa Arch. Located to the west of the town of Moab and a short distance from Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park is wild and diverse with four separate districts, each with its own characteristic landscape. The amazing light colours the cliffs red, pink and orange, and breathtakingly deep canyons drop suddenly out of the desert and wind aimlessly through the plateau along with awesome sandstone spires and cliffs. Visit the second district of Canyonlands National Park: Island in the Sky. From this large mesa, you will see a wilderness of countless canyons, buttes, mesas, and other geological features that were carved over millions of years by the Colorado and Green Rivers. A brief walk will take you to an ancestral pueblo granary, and then you will visit one of the most photographed geological features in the park, Mesa Arch. Also hike along the edge of the world to see Grandview Point, Murphy Point, or Upheaval Dome. Drive to Goulding Lodge just outside of Monument Valley National Park.


Day 5: Goulding - Page, AZ

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In some ways, Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is the definitive West. The valley is host to towering sandstone rock formations that have been sculpted over time and soar 400 to 1,000 feet above the valley floor. Combined with the surrounding mesas, buttes, and desert environment, it truly is one of the natural wonders of the world. Enter Monument Valley in an open-air truck and see the gigantic formations up close or towering along the horizon; also visit the filming spots for classic Western movies and lesser-frequented outcroppings in the backcountry.


Day 6: Page - Kanab, UT

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Start the day with a two-hour tour of the mysterious and haunting beauty of Antelope Canyon, also known as "Corkscrew Canyon", and one of the few slot canyons in the area. Travel to the Upper Antelope Canyon in a 4WD tour truck with a Navajo guide and step into the desert, an amazing fantasy world of stone which has been carved over many years with wind and water. The colours are rich and deep in the morning and afternoon. Your tour guide will explain some geology, culture, and history. Depart from Page and the Lake Powell area and travel west past the stunning Vermillion Cliffs, then climb the Kaibab Plateau as you make your way to Grand Canyon National Park North Rim for some amazing vistas as you visit one of the great natural wonders of the world. There will be free time for a snack at the Grand Canyon Lodge, located right on the canyon rim, before you head to the town of Kanab, also known as “Little Hollywood” due to the many movies and television shows filmed in the area.


Day 7: Kanab - Bryce Canyon National Park, UT

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Wind, water and time have eroded Bryce Canyon National Park's sandstone cliffs into otherworldly characters plucked from the unconscious of a mad Viking. Rows of humanoid pillars crosshatched by rock strata look almost intentional but perfectly surreal. Geologically, Bryce is not actually a canyon at all. You will spend the evening hiking this stunning area, relaxing, or simply viewing the amazing colours.


Day 8: Bryce Canyon National Park - Springdale, UT

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Your day in the Southwest's fantastic landscape starts with the early morning sun lighting up pink cliffs during an unforgettable sunrise in Bryce Canyon. Later, drive through the east entrance and up the Zion switchbacks to Zion National Park. Zion is the oldest national park in Utah. It was the state’s first federally designated park (1919), and it shows off the oldest geologic layers this side of the Grand Canyon (~150 million years old). It’s also Utah’s most visited national park, drawing over three million visitors annually. Zion means “the heavenly city” and the park’s Kolob Canyons are named after a place described in Mormon scripture as being near God’s throne. There are no churches in Zion National Park, but there’s plenty to inspire reverence. Coming into the east entrance of Zion National Park, you see the top layers of the largest sand dunes that have ever existed and may see bighorn sheep climbing the area, ponderosa pine trees growing out of the side of sheer cliffs, and the individual layers of sand shaped and altered over millions of years. After a brief stop at Checkerboard Mesa and a few other prime photo stops, you will have the opportunity to hike up to Canyon Overlook and look 2500 feet down to the bottom of Pine Creek and Zion Canyon. After traversing through the historic 1.1-mile long tunnel and down into the canyon, enter the main canyon and continue to see why this landscape was sacred to the Native Americans who lived here for thousands of years. You will explore sites like the Great White Throne, Angel's Landing, the Court of the Patriarchs, and the Narrows before you end the day with a short drive to Springdale.


Day 9: Zion National Park, UT

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With much to explore in this dramatic landscape, you have a second day here to see some of the sights in a different light or simply to spend time in solitude taking photographs and marvelling at the grandeur and uniqueness of the surrounding landscape.


Day 10: Spring Dale - Las Vegas, NV

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With stops along the way to photograph the scrub desert landscape, head south to Las Vegas and the bright lights and cityscape of a city very different from the natural masterpieces that you would have seen over the past week. There will be some free time this evening before a farewell dinner.


Day 11: Depart Prince Rupert, BC

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Departure from Las Vegas. BON VOYAGE!

Tour Includes:

  • 10 Nights Accommodation (3 - 4 star)
  • Professional Tour Leader
  • Deluxe Motorcoach Transportation
  • 20 Meals: 10 Breakfasts, 10 Dinners
  • Arches National Park
  • Petroglyph Panels
  • Canyonlands National Park
  • Mesa Arch
  • Navajo Tribal Park
  • Monument Valley
  • Antelope Canyon
  • North Rim of the Grand Canyon
  • Lake Powell
  • Vermillion Cliffs
  • Kaibab Plateau
  • Bryce Canyon National Park
  • Zion National Park
Departure Dates:   Tour Code   Double   Single

October 21 - 31, 2017

APCS

$4955
$4755

$6290
$6090

June 2 - 12, 2018

APCS

$4955
$4755

$6290
$6090

Pricing is per person in Canadian Dollars


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