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Grand Canyon vs Antelope Canyon: How to Choose Between These Two Can't Miss Destinations

Last Update on October 13, 2023
by Matthew Meier
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The Grand Canyon and Antelope Canyon are always high on the list of adventure travelers to the Southwest. Both of them are can’t miss destinations, however, sometimes time is limited and you can only see one.

This can lead to an agonizing choice: Grand Canyon or Antelope Canyon, which one to visit if you only have one day?

I have led over 5,000 travelers on our 2 Day Grand Canyon Antelope Canyon tour, and have had the chance to talk to them after the tour about which one of these canyons they preferred, giving us a wealth of insight into this difficult question: Which is better: Antelope Canyon or the Grand Canyon? Here is what those travelers told me. 

If You Only Have One Day, Visit Antelope Canyon

Antelope Canyon vs Grand Canyon
Looking up in Lower Antelope Canyon

By a wide margin, the travelers on my tours have preferred their tour to Antelope Canyon over their tour to the Grand Canyon. They said this in the reviews they wrote for their trip; they told me this when asked about their favorite part of the tour, and I could feel a higher level of excitement from our group when they got back from Antelope Canyon.

Antelope Canyon Wins All Around

The guests on my tours not only preferred Antelope Canyon to the Grand Canyon, many of them preferred Antelope Canyon to every other place they have ever traveled in the world. We get some very well traveled guests on our tours, and to hear this kind of praise from them really shows how special a trip to Antelope Canyon is. 

Having heard repeatedly: “That was the most amazing thing I have ever seen” gives me the confidence to recommend Antelope Canyon over the Grand Canyon. It’s a recommendation that I have been reluctant to make because...

The Grand Canyon is Amazing

Grand Canyon vs Antelope Canyon
Photographing the sunset on our 2 Day Grand Canyon Tour

The Grand Canyon is one of the most popular and iconic destinations in the United States. It is one of the seven wonders of the natural world and the 2nd most popular national park in the United States

While most of the travelers on my trips preferred Antelope Canyon over the Grand Canyon, they still LOVED the Grand Canyon!

You can spend more time at the Grand Canyon than Antelope Canyon, the vistas are wider at the Grand Canyon, and the sense of wonder, geology, and the long passage of time make any trip to the Grand Canyon special.  

Who Would Prefer The Grand Canyon?

My recommendation of Antelope Canyon over the Grand Canyon isn’t for everyone. 

If you are staying in Flagstaff, a trip to the Grand Canyon will be more appealing than it would be for visitors from Las Vegas or Phoenix.

A trip to Antelope Canyon only takes about an hour, and while there are other things to do in the area like Horseshoe Bend and Lake Powell, it can’t fill up an entire day in the same way the Grand Canyon can. A quick drive up from Flagstaff would give you all day to explore the Grand Canyon. 

Hiking at the Grand Canyon
Hiking at the Grand Canyon

Serious hikers would also get more value out of a trip to the Grand Canyon. There are dozens of trails that lead down into the Grand Canyon that will give you a bit of solitude and a fresh perspective of the canyon versus standing on the edge and peering down.

If you love hiking, you may want to choose a trip to the Grand Canyon over a trip to Antelope Canyon. 

No Wrong Answers

The glorious thing about choosing between a trip to the Grand Canyon and Antelope Canyon is that there is not a wrong answer. Both are world-class destinations and you will have a great time no matter which one you choose. 

If you only have time for one though, I recommend a trip to Antelope Canyon. 


Matthew Meier

World Traveler. Mandarin Speaker. Founder of MaxTour.
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