I always say that some tourist traps live up to the hype. I try never to be a travel snob. If a destination calls to me, I go — even if that means fighting crowds.
Upper Antelope Canyon by definition could qualify as a tourist trap, and physically the canyon could be a claustrophobic’s nightmare. Hundreds of people squeeze through underground walls that are, in some places, only shoulder-width.
But don’t let that stop you from going. There is a reason this is the most photographed slot canyon in the world. It’s worth the $48 admission fee, the bumpy and dusty truck ride through the desert, and yes, the crowds. Your neck will be sore from admiring this 360-degree sculptured masterpiece, but your soul will be satisfied.
[slogan]The Navajos have such deep appreciation for this place, they pause before entering to reflect reverentially on its grandeur.[/slogan]
There certainly is something enigmatic about these 120-feet walls that seem to be carved by the hand of God. The knowledge that lives can be lost deepens your respect for such a place. You see, the canyon was carved by water and if it floods, there may be no way out. This is partly why a guide is required.
Located on Navajo land, Upper Antelope Canyon is only accessible via a paid tour. There is a daily photographer’s tour, but check times before you go. It might happen first thing in the morning. The photographer’s tour is less crowded, nearly triple the price, and requires a DSLR and tripod. Tripods are not allowed, however, on the regular tours. Although the tours move quickly, your guide will give you time to stop and take pictures. All of my photos were taken on the regular tour. My guide was very knowledgeable and even pointed out the best photographic angles.