The South Rim Of The Grand Canyon
There are important differences between areas of the Grand Canyon that it is critical you understand before you pay money for a Grand Canyon tour. There has been a surge recently of complaints from tourists who feel as though they were sold something that they were not expecting when they booked tours through several Las Vegas tour companies. These companies were offering “tours of the Grand Canyon” but not explaining that the area of the Grand Canyon that they were being transported to was not the national park area. Instead, they are taken to the “west rim” which is an area controlled by the Navajo Indian tribe. While it might not seem like a big deal, when visitors notice that this area of the Grand Canyon does not look as spectacular as pictures they had seen before they realize that not only are they not seeing the area they expected but they probably do not have the time now to correct their mistake. It is important to ask the company providing your tour if you are visiting the “south rim” or the west rim.”
The “west rim of the Grand Canyon” is the area of land controlled by Navajo Nation that contains the Grand Canyon and is located about 2 hours from Las Vegas. It is not very well developed, and offers a single tourist attraction in the form of a glass walking bridge suspended from the canyon walls. Many naturalists have strong opinions about this man-made item spoiling the view of the canyon itself, but because this is private property controlled by Navajo Nation there is no protection against development. The bridge was created to give people a reason to visit this area instead of the actual national park area. It is approached much more in line with what a Las Vegas tourist might be looking for, a simple drive to an area that you walk the bridge and then leave. While this may appeal to some with very limited time to spend, most people who have desired seeing the Grand Canyon will want to avoid this tour.
The “south rim” is the national park area that you have seen in books and magazines in the past. It is a protected space so development is limited to elements that would make tourism easier, or provide more entertainment within the scope of the natural settings. There are many activities within the area ranging from helicopter rides to hiking and fishing. The area is quite lush and has thousands of species of animals and plants for viewing. Camping is also available to those who wish to spend the night under the stars.
While we prefer the south rim area and offer our tours to that particular area only, it must be said that if you visit the west rim you will still be seeing some spectacular sights. The only thing to consider is that if you are not paying attention when you book your tour, there is a possibility that you would end up seeing an area that you didn’t want to see.