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Is Antelope Canyon a National Park?

Last Update on November 20, 2023
by Marko Milin
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When you see pictures of Antelope Canyon, with its wave-like walls and light beams streaming through its narrow openings, you might wonder is Antelope Canyon a national park? This breathtaking slot canyon, located in the American Southwest, has become a must-visit for photographers and nature enthusiasts alike. However, Antelope Canyon is not a national park. It's actually a part of the Navajo Nation's park system and is considered a Navajo Tribal Park.

Understanding Antelope Canyon's Status

Antelope Canyon is located near Page, Arizona, and is within the LeChee Chapter of the Navajo Nation. As a Navajo Tribal Park, it is managed by the Navajo Nation itself, rather than the National Park Service. This distinction is important because it means that visiting Antelope Canyon requires a different approach than visiting a national park.

One of the unique aspects of Antelope Canyon being a tribal park is that it requires visitors to be accompanied by a Navajo guide. This policy not only helps protect the delicate sandstone formations but also provides visitors with a richer understanding of the canyon's cultural and historical significance to the Navajo people.

Why Antelope Canyon is Special

Antelope Canyon was formed over thousands of years by the erosion of Navajo Sandstone, primarily due to flash flooding and other sub-aerial processes. The canyon is known for its wave-like structure and the light beams that shine down into the openings of the canyon, creating a surreal and dreamlike atmosphere. It's divided into two separate sections, commonly referred to as Upper Antelope Canyon (or The Crack) and Lower Antelope Canyon (or The Corkscrew).

Upper Antelope Canyon is the more frequently visited section due to its ground level entrance and no requirement for climbing. The light beams that occur during midday sun are more common in the Upper canyon. Lower Antelope Canyon is accessed by a series of ladders and has more of an adventurous feel.

Visiting Antelope Canyon

If you're planning a trip to Antelope Canyon, consider MaxTour's Antelope Canyon Tour from Las Vegas. This tour offers a convenient and comprehensive way to experience the beauty of Antelope Canyon, along with other nearby attractions.

The tour includes round-trip transportation from Las Vegas to Antelope Canyon, ensuring you can relax and enjoy the stunning desert scenery along the way. Once at the canyon, you'll be guided by a Navajo guide who will share insights into the canyon's formation, history, and cultural significance. This is a fantastic opportunity to learn about the canyon from those who know it best.

MaxTour's Added Adventures

In addition to exploring Antelope Canyon, MaxTour's tour package often includes visits to other nearby attractions. You might find yourself marveling at the engineering feat of the Hoover Dam or being captivated by the natural beauty of Horseshoe Bend. These added stops make the tour a well-rounded and enriching experience, offering more than just a single destination.

Tips for Your Visit

When visiting Antelope Canyon, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  1. Book in Advance: Antelope Canyon is extremely popular, and tours can fill up quickly, especially during peak season.
  2. Photography: The canyon is a photographer's paradise, but remember to enjoy the moment too. Listen to your guide's advice for the best photo ops.
  3. Respect the Land: Remember, you're visiting a sacred site. Be respectful of the environment and the cultural significance of the canyon.


So, while Antelope Canyon is not a national park, its status as a Navajo Tribal Park makes it a unique and special place to visit. With its breathtaking beauty and rich cultural history, a trip to Antelope Canyon, especially with a comprehensive tour like MaxTour's, is an unforgettable experience. It's a vivid reminder of nature's artistry and the deep cultural connections of the Navajo people to the land.

Related Reading: Can You Do a Self-Guided Tour of Antelope Canyon?


Marko Milin

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