Zion, Bryce and the Grand Canyon holiday
Description of Zion, Bryce and the Grand Canyon holiday
This week long holiday takes in some of the USAs greatest landscapes: Grand Canyon, Bryce and Zion National Parks being the top three, but also Monument Valley. This is a colossal circuit really, travelling in a small group, using private transport and staying in hotels along the way.
Starting and ending in Las Vegas, the first stop is Zion National Park, where we will spend a couple of days taking time to really explore. Far from a coach tour, our holidays are about getting out of the car and into the landscape with myriad trails to choose from at all the great places we visit. In Zion, for example, one of the must do’s is Angels Landing Trail which certainly gives the most heavenly views.
Next stop is Bryce Canyon National Park, less well known internationally but one of those places you will hardly believe until you see it. The difference in height between the dusty depths of the canyon floor and the extraordinary plateau is 2438m, creating a natural amphitheatre of stunningly beautiful sandstone spires. Sunset here is a highlight for many on this holiday.
Another natural highlight but also one for important cultural heritage is Monument Valley. Not actually a national park, but a Navajo reservation and officially called a Navajo Tribal Park, enjoy a 4X4 backroads tour among the red sandstone monoliths are on sacred land, and our excellent local guide will share stories and history on this precious place.
Last but not least is Grand Canyon National Park, where a choice of hiking trails enables us to escape the tourist crowds and explore this wonder of a wilderness in a more profound way. And it certainly is profound, the canyon being 1.6km deep and 29km wide. Your trip finishes with another biggie, not a natural one this time but an iconic one, following Route 66 back to Las Vegas.
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PlanetWe are committed to offering low impact tours that benefit both the places and communities we visit as well as our travellers. It is important for us all to be aware of the delicate balance that exists in the variety of natural wonders you will visit. National Parks and monuments, archaeological sites and other sensitive areas should and must be treated with respect.
We have created a 'Travellers' Code of Conduct' to help prepare and inform our groups of the various positive or negative effects they could have on a destination. The code includes tips on everything from handling wildlife encounters to how you can help to conserve precious natural resources. Our tour leaders will explain this code of conduct during the first night’s orientation talk and encourage you to follow it throughout the tour.
This code includes following the ‘Leave No Trace’ ethic, this is an international campaign that is designed to help us minimise the impact on the National Parks and other wilderness areas that we visit. Some key guidelines we follow include keeping to existing trails, staying in official campgrounds and disposing of all waste responsibly and recycling whatever we can.
PeopleWe are proud supporters of Bay Area Wilderness Training (www.bawt.org) a charity based in Oakland California which works to connect disadvantaged children in the local urban area with the great outdoors. Their work helps to provide these young people with life changing experiences which they can
apply to everyday life. Everyone booking with Grand American Adventures has the option to donate £1/$1/€1 to support this well-deserved charity and we will match this donation.
Whenever possible, we use local accommodation and activity providers. We also shop locally for groceries, eat in small family-run restaurants and visit local shops whenever possible. This all brings economic benefit to the local communities that we visit.
It is also important that we help to protect the fragile desert environment. The desert’s natural way to avoid sand erosion is by creating cryptobiotic soil which creates a living crust on the desert floor. This special soil helps the desert to protect itself from wind and rain erosion and promotes plant growth. All our tour leaders encourage our travellers to stick to the path to avoid damaging this special soil which can be hard to see.
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