Antelope Canyon in December: Winter Weather Can’t Take Shine Off This Breathtaking Sight
|Entrance Fee||Tour guides are mandatory to visit Upper & Lower Antelope Canyon. Please check Navajo Nation Parks site for the list of licensed guided tours. We booked Antelope Slot Canyon tours.|
|Credit Card Accepted||Depends on the tour operator|
|Parking Available||Yes, at the guided tour operator’s office.|
- Please note that you cannot take your own vehicle to the canyon entrance. Navajo Parks and Recreation department mandates all visitors must be transported by licensed tour operators.
- Tour guides are mandatory in both Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon. That is, you are not allowed to visit Antelope Canyon on your own.
- If you’re visiting Antelope Canyon in the month of December, make sure you pack warm clothes. Don’t forget gloves and a headband/hat to cover your ears.
- You don’t need any special shoes, just comfortable ones. Be advised that sand will get into your shoes.
- The canyon is 1/8th of a mile one-way, and therefore, there will be a little walking involved.
- The tour of Antelope Canyon is NOT handicapped accessible because of bumpy ‘off-road’ and rocky and sandy terrain.
- There are no restrooms, food, or water available at the canyon. Therefore, don’t forget to use the bathroom and grab some water before you take off for your tour.
- Light beams peek into the canyon from March to October. If you’re visiting the canyon in winter, you won’t see the light beams but it’s still magnificent and worth a visit.
- If you’re visiting Antelope Canyon in Page, AZ, I’d highly recommend visiting Horseshoe Bend on the outskirts of Page. It’s simply breathtaking and
completely free. It is no longer free.
Antelope Canyon had always been on my travel bucket list. I remember how mesmerized I was when I had first seen pictures of light beams touching the floor of the Antelope Canyon. It had been on my wish list ever since.
Light beams peek into the canyon between March and October. Since I’d visited Antelope Canyon in December, I couldn’t see the light beam but it was still magnificent.
Antelope Canyon is located around 8 miles east of Page, AZ, which is a beautiful town with many attractions like Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon, Horseshoe bend, Lake Powell, etc.
Weather at Antelope Canyon, Arizona in December:
When we visited Page, AZ in the month of December, the weather was cold with daily high temperatures in the mid-30s. However, visiting Antelope Canyon in cold weather is like a blessing in disguise because of fewer crowds and the absence of desert heat waves. With careful planning, a trip to Antelope Canyon in December can be a great winter getaway.
Year-round Weather at Antelope Canyon, Arizona:
Not visiting Antelope Canyon in winter? No problem. The chart below will give you an idea about the year-round weather in Page, AZ and the average high and low temperature for each month of the year. Hopefully, this information will help you plan your trip to Antelope Canyon and Lake Powell.
Temperature-wise, Antelope Canyon can be visited at any time of the year. March to October is a popular time to visit because light beams peek into the canyon during this time.
One thing to watch out for sure while visiting Antelope Canyon is rain. There is always a danger around flash floods in Antelope Canyon during the rainy season.
What makes planning more worse is rain does not have to fall only on or near the Antelope Canyon slots for flash floods.
Rain falling several miles away ‘upstream’ of the Antelope Canyon can still whip through the canyons. This is one of the biggest reasons why Lower and Upper Antelope Canyon can be visited exclusively through guided tours.
Upper Antelope Canyon vs Lower Antelope Canyon:
We had visited Upper Antelope Canyon, and the following factors had helped us reach this decision:
- Upper Antelope Canyon is more touristy as compared to Lower Antelope Canyon. That is, more tourists visit Upper Antelope as compared to Lower Antelope.
- Upper Antelope doesn’t involve any climbing. However, this is not the case with Lower Antelope. Lower Antelope involve moderate climbing of stairs and ladders.
- Though Lower Antelope gets light beams as well, professional photographers prefer shooting light beams at Upper Antelope.
- Upper Antelope is wider as compared to Lower Antelope.
As it is clear from above factors, Upper Antelope is more popular than Lower Antelope because of accessibility, more tours, light beams and width.
Lights Beams in December:
Disappointment Alert!!!! – If you’re visiting Antelope Canyon in December, you will not be able to find light beams in the canyon. Lights Beams peek into the canyon from mid-March to early October. Summer months (June, July, and August) are the best months to see the light beams. During these months, the best time of the day to witness light beams is around noon, plus minus an hour (11 AM – 1:00 PM).
Though you won’t be able to see the light beams in winter months (November, December, January, and February), it is still magnificent and definitely worth a visit.
Getting to Page, Arizona:
If you are in Las Vegas, Grand Canyon or nearby, the best way to visit Page, AZ is by car. Page is located around 130 miles northeast of Grand Canyon Village (2 hours) and around 275 miles (4 hours) east of Las Vegas. However, if you are in some other part of the country/world and want to visit Antelope Canyon, flying is the best bet.
The city of Page, AZ has Page Municipal Airport which is a commercial service airport with daily flights to Denver and Phoenix.
Our time at the Antelope Canyon:
After carefully going through the list of licensed guided tours on the Navajo Nation Parks website, we decided to choose Antelope Slot Canyon tours for our excursion because of the great reviews on their TripAdvisor page.
We made the booking in advance on their website, and the cost came out to be around $58 per person which included the Navajo Permit fee of $8.
While comparing Antelope Slot Canyon tours with other tour companies, the other tours looked a little cheaper because they didn’t include the $8 Navajo Permit fee as they collect it in cash on the day of the tour. Make sure you account for this permit fee while comparing different tours.
We had booked a 1:00 PM tour. The tour company asked us to report by 12:30 PM at their office located at 55 S. Lake Powell Blvd. Page, AZ. There was enough parking available at their location.
The office itself was more of a souvenir shop with ample space to house 20-25 people. Since it was cold outside, we spent our time waiting inside the shop and buying some souvenirs.
The restrooms were nice and clean. At 12:30 PM, we were asked to board their pickup trucks. Though the trucks were not air-conditioned, they were mostly packed which saved us from the cold (not completely, but for the most part).
The first 10 minutes of the ride in the pickup truck were very pleasant. Then, we went “off-road” and the ride became very bumpy. After around 20 minutes ride, we arrived at the Antelope Canyon entrance.
Sandy and bumpy ‘off road’ to Antelope Canyon
The first sight of the Antelope Canyon was simply breathtaking, and I just couldn’t wait to go inside.
Magnificent first sight of the Antelope Canyon
Before going in, our awesome tour guide Marla asked us to change our camera/iPhone settings so that the photos turn out to be good. It was really nice of her to do that otherwise the default settings of the camera would have picked up nothing inside because of low light.
Entering the canyon..
From the moment we stepped into the canyon, we were simply awestruck by the breathtaking views
One of the biggest advantages of visiting Antelope Canyon in December was fewer crowds
Don’t judge the beauty of Antelope Canyon by my photographs. I consider myself an amateur photographer. A professional photographer would have done more justice to this fascinating sight.
Spot the face..
Us at the canyon 🙂
Where did we stay in Page, AZ
We were visiting Page, AZ during our trip to Vegas. This is how we’d planned our week-long trip: Fly into Vegas, a few nights in Vegas, drive to Grand Canyon, a night at Grand Canyon Village, drive to Page, AZ, a night in Page, AZ, drive back to Vegas, spend another night and fly out.
That is, we were looking for someplace to spend just one night in Page, AZ. We opted for Best Western Plus At Lake Powell, Page because we got a great rate for this hotel at Booking.com and the hotel had good reviews on TripAdvisor.
We’d paid $58.18 including taxes for a double room. Pretty good bargain, right? Well, I am not done yet! $58.18 including breakfast. How about it now? The room was clean and the breakfast was sumptuous.
Overall, we enjoyed out stay at Best Western Plus At Lake Powell, Page and I would highly recommend it.
Please note that we visited Antelope Canyon in December which is considered to be off/shoulder season. Maybe, that’s why we scored such a great deal for this hotel. The prices may vary based on your dates of travel.
Antelope Canyon, located near Page, Arizona, is a popular destination for photography enthusiasts and nature lovers alike. With its stunning red sandstone walls and dramatic light beams, the canyon is a sight to behold. Although the canyon is beautiful year-round, visiting in December can be a unique and special experience.
One of the main draws of visiting Antelope Canyon in December is the chance to see the canyon in a different light. During the summer months, the canyon can be extremely hot and crowded, making it difficult to fully enjoy the beauty of the place. In December, the temperatures are cooler, and the crowds are smaller, allowing visitors to have a more peaceful and intimate experience.
Another reason to visit Antelope Canyon in December is the opportunity to see the canyon in a different light. The canyon is known for its beautiful light beams, which are created when the sun is at just the right angle to shine through the narrow openings in the top of the canyon. During the winter months, the sun is lower in the sky, which can create a different type of light beam. This can make for some truly stunning photographs and memories.
The winter also offers an opportunity to see snow in the canyon, which is a rare sight. Snowfall in the area is not a common occurrence, but when it does happen, it adds an extra layer of beauty to the already stunning landscape. The snow covers the red sandstone walls, creating a unique contrast that can’t be seen at any other time of the year.
Visiting Antelope Canyon in December also offers the chance to experience the local culture and traditions. The Navajo Nation, which manages the canyon, celebrates the winter solstice with a traditional Navajo ceremony called the “Nightway Ceremony.” This ceremony is a healing ceremony that is held over several nights, and it is a unique opportunity to experience Navajo culture and tradition.
When planning a visit to Antelope Canyon in December, it’s important to be prepared for the colder temperatures. Layering is key, as temperatures can fluctuate throughout the day. A good pair of hiking boots is also essential, as the canyon floor can be slippery and uneven. It’s also important to bring plenty of water, as the canyon can be dry and arid.
In terms of photography, it’s important to note that the light beams in the canyon can be unpredictable, so it’s essential to be flexible and be ready to take advantage of the light when it presents itself. It’s also important to note that tripods are not allowed on the canyon’s guided tours, so a sturdy, hand-held camera is a must.
Overall, visiting Antelope Canyon in December offers a unique and special experience. The cooler temperatures, smaller crowds, and different light conditions can make for a truly breathtaking and unforgettable experience. The chance to see the canyon in a different light, as well as the opportunity to experience local culture and traditions, make December a great time to visit. With the right preparation and a flexible attitude, a visit to Antelope Canyon in December can be an experience of a lifetime.
Antelope Canyon is a must-visit for its breathtaking sights. Though I was a little skeptical about the weather and snow before visiting Antelope Canyon in the winter months, it turned out to be a blessing in disguise.
It was a little cold, but no snow and crowds. I would highly recommend booking your tour with Antelope Slop Canyon tours for their great service and awesome tour guides.