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Grand Canyon Bus Tours Explore the West Rim

June 07, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 130

Visiting the West Rim and other adjacent areas can be done conveniently by taking a Grand Canyon bus tour. You can explore the attractive scenery of the national park and other key landmarks that are very close to Las Vegas. The canyon itself offers you the opportunity to enjoy brilliant colors and incredible geological formations that will have you agreeing that this is indeed the best of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World.

The main attraction at Grand Canyon West is the Grand Canyon Skywalk, a glass bridge that lets you walk more than 70 feet past the rim. The bridge is shaped like a "U." It's when you stand at its apex that you get the most incredible aerial views of the surrounding area. You're also suspended some 4,000 feet over the bottom of the chasm!

The glass walkway is quite strong and can withstand winds in excess of 100 miles an hour. Engineers also designed it to handle magnitude 8 earthquakes. When all's said and done, the bridge can support up to 70 fully loaded jumbo jets. Ironically, maximum occupancy is limited to 120 people.

From the top of the West Rim, you'll be able to see the Colorado River. This waterway's headwaters start at the base of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado and end in the Sea of Cortez in Mexico. The river, which formed the canyon, winds through the National Park for 277 miles.

The floor of the canyon, which is nearly one mile below you, can be accessed by helicopter. The descent takes about 10 minutes. The unique thing about this flight is that it's the only one of its kind in the entire canyon. There are also opportunities to take a pontoon boat down the river.

The types of buses used to get to the West Rim are state-of-the-art. In a sense, they have to be. The last 10 miles or so of road to the rim is dirt. Some people prefer to drive themselves to the park. I suggest you reconsider. Then again, why? Coaches are fully customized for sightseeing and epitomize comfort and luxury. Plus drivers also serve as guides and from my experience are a great help in understanding what's passing outside the window.

You will appreciate the fact that there are numerous stopping points that allow you take photos. The most popular is Hoover Dam, the 700-foot structure that's responsible for managing the powerful flow of the Colorado River. Typically stops range up to 15 minutes and are primarily for photos. You will have to take a Hoover Dam tour if you are looking to spend more time at the site.

It's important that you set aside an entire day for a West Rim bus tour. These trips all start early in the morning and get you back to your Las Vegas Strip hotel by early evening. In the past I've made evening reservations after such a trip but frankly it's a full day and can be physically demanding. There's also the heat, which during the summer can easily crack 100 degrees.

Ready for a Grand Canyon road trip? Here's a list of the Top 3 West Rim bus tours that are sure to make your trip to the National Park spectacular:

Source: EzineArticles
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