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See some of the Southwest's iconic landscapes on new Las Vegas day trip

See some of the Southwest's iconic landscapes on new Las Vegas day trip
You can add Horseshoe Bend to your next trip to Las Vegas, thanks to a new helicopter tour that shuttles visitors from the Strip to sites in northern Arizona. (Papillon Group)

There is life outside the neon lights of Las Vegas. Visitors who want to play in Sin City by night and see some of the Southwest's most iconic natural landscapes by day may want to check out a new air-and-land tour.

Next Tuesday, Grand Canyon Scenic Airlines will start taking visitors to lesser-seen sights in northern Arizona. The Antelope Canyon Expedition Tour lasts 11 hours and takes guests from their Vegas hotels to the Boulder City, Nev., airport.

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Antelope Canyon, on Navajo land in remote northern Arizona, is one of the stops on a new helicopter tour that starts Aug. 1.
Antelope Canyon, on Navajo land in remote northern Arizona, is one of the stops on a new helicopter tour that starts Aug. 1. (Papillon Group)

From there, sightseers take off for Page, Ariz., the jumping-off point for visits to the spiral-interior Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend, where the Colorado River makes a spectacular U-turn that can be viewed from atop a towering cliff.

Antelope Canyon, located on Navajo Nation land, is a slot canyon carved from sandstone millions of years ago. While not commonly visited given its remote location, the canyon is popular with photographers who capture narrow beams of sunlight pouring into the crevices.

For now, the tour is only offered to groups willing to charter an entire plane. Visitors can rent a nine-passenger Cessna Caravan for $3,500, which works out to $389 per person. It includes guided tours from the air and on the ground plus a picnic lunch.

A Vistaliner, shown here flying over the Grand Canyon, will take visitors to remote locations in northern Arizona.
A Vistaliner, shown here flying over the Grand Canyon, will take visitors to remote locations in northern Arizona. (Papillon Group)

A 16-passenger Vistaliner is priced at $6,000, or $375 per person. The planes are de Havilland Twin Otters with large windows added to provide unobstructed views of the scenery below.

Starting April 1, 2018, the tour operator plans to offer the trip to individual guests for $499 per person. Tours will be offered year-round too.

The air tour operator also offers flights over and into the Grand Canyon. The company says it's the first company to offer sightseeing trips to the Page/Lake Powell region.

Info: Grand Canyon Scenic Airlines, (800) 634-6801

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