July 4th is one of the Park’s busiest times of the year. Many tours sell out for the holiday (so you need to book yours quickly), but Grand Canyon plane tours seem to be some of the most popular. If you ask me, it’s because airplane tours are terrific fun and a great way to see the canyon’s true magnificence. The National Park is huge (it covers over a million acres!) and the best way to see it is from the air.

You can start your airplane tour in Las Vegas, Nevada or from the Grand Canyon National Park Airport in Tusayan, Arizona. Tusayan flights do the South Rim, while Vegas flights go to the South or the West Rim. There are no flights that go between the West Rim and South Rim.

Air Tours From Tusayan

Grand Canyon plane tours leaving from Tusayan are perfect for folks coming from Phoenix, Sedona, Flagstaff, Williams, Scottsdale, or other points in Arizona. You start by driving or taking a bus to the airport in Tusayan. Check-in time is always 30 minutes before takeoff.

You can select a variety of tours out of Tusayan, but one of the most popular ones covers nearly all of the canyon region in about an hour-long flight. You should also consider the package that comes with an off-road Jeep ride to see the Slot Canyons in Antelope Canyon and a raft trip down the smooth waters of the Colorado River.

Airplane Tours From Vegas

Vegas travelers are in luck when it comes to seeing the Grand Canyon. They have several options, including air-only and landing flights.

The air-only tours are perfect if you are short on time or money. The route passes over scenic Lake Mead and Hoover Dam, and then it’s off for Grand Canyon West before turning back to Sin City.

The air tours are fantastic but the landing tours are even more exciting, so you should try one if you have the time. My favorite at the West Rim is the package that includes an exciting chopper flight to the canyon bottom, followed by a smooth-water float trip down the Colorado. Another popular tour includes VIP access to the glass Skywalk that lets you walk out 70 feet beyond the rim and peer into the canyon below.

If you prefer, you can go to the South Rim from Vegas. The direct flight from Vegas to GCN only takes 60 minutes and the tour includes an almost 3-hour bus tour inside the Park. A South Rim-to-North Rim-and back chopper flight is an exciting optional add-on that I highly recommend.


Keep in mind, the Fourth of July holiday is a very busy time for visiting the Grand Canyon. To make sure you get the date you want, book your flight at least one to two weeks ahead of time. Book your seats on the Web for the best prices. You have to buy directly from the tour operator’s website though and not sites such as Priceline, Viator, or Expedia. By getting your seats on the company’s website, you qualify for their low Internet rate.

To Sum Up

Grand Canyon airplane tours are popular, and July 4th is one of their busiest times of the year. Ensure you get seats on the tour you want by getting them about two weeks ahead of time. And don’t forget to buy on the ?Net, where the rates are better than anywhere else. All the airplane tours of the Grand Canyon are fantastic fun so no matter which option you choose, you will have a wonderful time. Maybe I will see you there!

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