Canyons of the Southwest

While the Grand Canyon is undoubtedly the world’s most famous, the southwest states of the U.S. boast many others which pack a rare punch.

Journey Overview

While the Grand Canyon is undoubtedly the world’s most famous, the southwest states of the U.S. boast many others which pack a rare punch. Carved through solid rock by winding rivers, these ancient natural formations are sculpturally breathtaking and on this journey through Arizona, Utah and Nevada you’ll discover the most impressive and see them from many different perspectives. Seek out the wildlife and botanical attractions of these desert ecosystems and hike along rugged trails to panoramic viewpoints. And finish your adventure amidst the bright lights of ‘Vegas’.

Journey Highlights

  • Float above the Valley of the Sun in a hot air balloon
  • Travel off-road by jeep to ancient cliff dwellings
  • Discover the Grand Canyon on foot and from the air
  • Drift through Glen Canyon on the waters of the Colorado River
  • Admire the extraordinary Bryce Canyon and Zion National Parks on foot
Itinerary

Journey Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive Phoenix, Arizona

Upon arrival into the thriving desert metropolis of Phoenix, collect your rental car and drive the short distance to your hotel with the rest of the day at leisure
Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North (Premier Casita Guest Room)

Day 2: Scottsdale

Rise early today for a breathtaking hour-long hot air balloon ride. Be amazed by the unobstructed views from above and capture the scenery on film. Your pilot will fly at a variety of elevations, up to 900 metres in the air for the highest aerial views of the striking desert valley, to just over 100 metres from the ground where the sights and sounds of desert life can be appreciated up close. Keep a look out for jackrabbit, quail, roadrunner and coyote, and from time to time deer, javelina (or collared peccary) and other desert wildlife. Your pilot will point out exotic desert plant life below and descend within inches of trees and cacti.

The rest of the day is at leisure to relax by the pool or hike through the impressive McDowell Sonoran Desert Preserve, a permanently protected sustainable desert habitat encompassing more than 30,000 acres and nearly 270 kilometres of trails. Depending on the time of year you may see blooming cacti, wildflowers, cactus wrens, and several hundred species of migratory birds.
Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North (Premier Casita Guest Room)| Meals: B

Day 3: Scottsdale – Sedona

This morning you are free to relax at the resort before driving north to Sedona.
Enchantment Resort (Casita Guest Room) | Meals: B

Day 4: Sedona

This morning join your guide on an exploratory jeep tour of the canyons surrounding Sedona. This archaeological adventure begins with a short drive on a paved yet primitive forest service road to the Honanki Heritage Site, a 700-year old Sinaguan cliff dwelling. Your guide will reveal the history of the site and explain the hidden meaning found in the rock art. Walk through the ancient cliff dwellings and be informed along the way about Native American history, geology, flora, fauna and other interesting facts about the area. Return to the resort with the afternoon at leisure to enjoy a spa treatment or continue exploring on your own.
Enchantment Resort (Casita Guest Room) | Meals: B

Day 5: Sedona - Tusayan

Drive two hours to Grand Canyon National Park through the desert canyons that are so characteristic of Arizona and stop in historic Flagstaff on Route 66, surrounded by ponderosa pine forests. Arrive at Grand Canyon Airport for a helicopter flightseeing tour over the canyon with a fully narrated aerial tour from your pilot-guide. This is a dramatic and stunning way to see this spectacular geological marvel.   Best Western Grand Canyon Squire Inn (Deluxe Guest Room) | Meals: B

Day 6: Grand Canyon

Meet your private guide this morning for a hike around the canyon rim and along little-used trails into the canyon itself. Enjoy insights along the way on the history, geology, flora and fauna of the area and this afternoon your guide will introduce you to the historic lodges and buildings on the rim of the canyon, including the studio of photography pioneers Emery and Ellsworth Kolb. Lunch is included at the historic El Tovar Hotel. 
Best Western Grand Canyon Squire Inn (Deluxe Guest Room) | Meals: BL

Day 7: Tusayan – Page

Continue your road trip north towards the Utah border to Page, on the shores of Lake Powell. In the afternoon, take to the Colorado River on a float trip around extraordinary Glen Canyon. Marvel at the astonishing rock formations and the fascinating artefacts of Petroglyph Beach. Gaze in awe at the soaring cliffs above Horseshoe Bend and learn the stories of the ancestral Puebloan people who lived here. Afterwards, journey by coach back from Lees Ferry to Page, passing Vermillion Cliffs, beautiful orchards, and historic structures along the way.  
Courtyard Page at Lake Powell (Traditional Guest Room) | Meals: BL

Day 8: Page – Tropic, Utah

Join your guide this morning as you drive deep into the canyons surrounding Lake Powell. Hike into a sunset-hued, 18-metre deep slot canyon and admire the beautiful and unique natural features created from millions of years of erosion. Accept photographic tips from your guide as you hike through the canyon on flat, sandy terrain and take time for peaceful reflection enjoying the solitude without the crowds.  

Afterwards cross the Utah state line and continue further north to Tropic, the gateway to Bryce Canyon National Park. Upon arrival, check-in to your comfortable inn.  
Stone Canyon Inn (One Bedroom Bungalow) | Meals: B

Day 9: Bryce Canyon

Head out on a guided half day hike to Bryce Canyon where the otherworldly landscape of tall, thin rocky pinnacles (or hoodoos) is mesmerising. Your guide will explain how the forces of wind and water have created them as you traverse the park. Stop along the trail to enjoy a picnic lunch en route. This afternoon is free for further self-guided exploration of the area.  
Stone Canyon Inn (One Bedroom Bungalow) | Meals: BL

Day 10: Tropic – Zion National Park – Springdale

Rise early for the drive west to Springdale where you join your private guide for a stunning half day tour of Zion National Park. Hike through the park to incredible look-out points while your guide interprets the local flora, fauna, geology and history as you go. Take in Zion's spectacular rock formations including the Three Patriarchs, Cathedral Mountain and Checkerboard Mesa. Zion's sedimentary rock layers continue to be eroded by the forces of wind and water to this day, revealing the iconic red and coral hues of the Southwest. The rest of the afternoon is yours to explore at leisure.  
Cliffrose Lodge & Gardens (Riverside Guest Room) | Meals: B

Day 11: Zion National Park

Today is yours to explore your own way. We recommend visiting Springdale, the gateway community at the western entrance to the park. Established in 1862, Springdale became home to the first settlers of European descent and there is a profusion of galleries, shops and eateries to explore. Or take the free shuttle bus on the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive and stop by the Zion Human History Museum.  
Cliffrose Lodge & Gardens (Riverside Guest Room) | Meals: B

Day 12: Springdale – Las Vegas, Nevada

A morning at leisure before driving on to Las Vegas and your hotel situated in the heart of ‘the Strip’.  
Waldorf Astoria Las Vegas (Strip View Guest Room) | Meals: B

Day 13: Las Vegas

The day is yours to marvel at the sights and sounds of ‘Vegas’, entertainment capital of the world. Stroll ‘the Strip’ surrounded by neon signs. Check out the dancing fountains of the Bellagio, the Atlantis animatronic spectacle at Caesars Palace, the volcanic ‘eruptions’ at the Mirage. Or, for those looking to escape the sensory overload, head out of town to the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area in the Mojave Desert where there are hiking trails, picnic areas, and a nature centre. This evening take the opportunity of seeing one of Vegas’ world-famous shows such as Mystere (Cirque du Soleil) at Treasure Island, Blue Man Group at Monte Carlo, La Reve at Wynn, O (Cirque du Soleil) at Bellagio or Mac King Comedy & Magic at Harrah’s. 
Waldorf Astoria Las Vegas (Strip View Guest Room) | Meals: B

Day 14: Depart Las Vegas

After breakfast, check out of your hotel and drive to the Las Vegas Airport. Return your rental car and check in for your onward flight.
Meals: B

Show Full Itinerary
Accommodation/Partners

Accommodation/Partners

Four Seasons Resort, Scottsdale

Canyons of the Southwest

Each of the rooms at this magical Four Seasons Resort offer views of either the Sonoran desert or mountains. This is a genuine destinatio ... Read more

Enchantment Resort, Sedona

Canyons of the Southwest

Enchantment Resort is surrounded by the unique natural beauty that makes up the Southwest desert. Each room offers viewing decks overlook ... Read more

Best Western Grand Canyon Squire Inn

Canyons of the Southwest

Located close to the South Rim entrance to Grand Canyon National Park, the Best Western Grand Canyon Squire Inn offers spacious, comforta ... Read more

Courtyard Page at Lake Powell

Canyons of the Southwest

Overlooking Arizona's breathtaking Glen Canyon National Recreation Area and the pristine waters of Lake Powell, the Courtyard Page is you ... Read more

Stone Canyon Inn, Bryce Canyon

Canyons of the Southwest

The charming family-run Stone Canyon Inn sits on 80 acres bordering Bryce Canyon National Park and offers warm personalised service. Acco ... Read more

Cliffrose Lodge & Gardens, Springdale

Canyons of the Southwest

Bordering Zion National Park along the Virgin River, the Cliffrose Lodge & Gardens is a delightful riverside boutique resort with comfort ... Read more

Waldorf Astoria, Las Vegas

Canyons of the Southwest

The Waldorf Astoria Las Vegas is quite different to any other hotel in the city. The lobby and check-in are on the 23rd floor in the 'sky ... Read more

Journey Dates & Prices

As this Private Journey can be personalised to your specific requirements, it is not available for online booking.

Depending on your preferred dates and arrangements, final pricing will vary from low season to peak season travel.

Please call A&K on 1300 851 800 or send us a booking enquiry to book this journey