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The Grand Canyon Tours

Aug 17, 2007
The Grand Canyon is a very colourful, steep sided gorge, carved by the Colorado River, in the U.S. state of Arizona. It is largely contained within the Grand Canyon National Park one of the first national parks in the United States.

It is more than a great chasm carved over millennia through the rocks of the Colorado Plateau. It is more than an awe inspiring view.

Nearly five million people see Grand Canyon each year. Most of them see it from their car at overlooks along the South Rim. The South Rim is the most accessible part of the park and is open all year. A much smaller number of people see the Canyon from the North Rim, which lies just ten miles directly across the Canyon from the South Rim.

Views from the North Rim tend to give a better impression of the expanse of the canyon than those from the South Rim.

However from the South Rim there are several historical buildings in theGrand Canyon Village.

The El Tovar Hotel. It was built in 1905 and is the most luxurious of all lodging. The hotel consists of four stories with a rustic look. It was designed by Charles Whittlesey. A gift shop and restaurant are located inside the hotel.

Bright Angel Lodge was built in 1935 and consisted of logs and stone. Mary Colter designed the lodge and it was built by Fred Harvey. Inside the lodge is a small museum honouring Fred Harvey who played a major role in popularising the Grand Canyon.

Hopi House was built by the Hopi in 1905. It is based on structures that were built in an ancient Hopi settlement called Old Oraibi. It served as a residence for the Hopi Indians who sold arts and crafts to visitors.

Verkamps Curios was built by John Verkamp in 1905. He sold arts and crafts as well as souvenirs. It is currently run by his descendants and stands next to the Hopi House.

Kolb Studio was built in 1904 by brothers Ellsworth and Emery Kolb. They were photographers who made a living by photographing visitors walking down the Bright Angel Trail. In 1911, the Kolb brothers filmed their journey down the Green and Colorado Rivers. This video was constantly shown to visitors by Emery until 1976, when he died.

Grand Canyon Depot was built in 1909 and contains two levels. It is only one of three log cabins currently standing in the United States and one of fourteen ever built in the country.

The depot is the northern terminus of the Grand Canyon Railway which begins in Williams, Arizona.

Lookout Studio was built in 1914 and is another structure that was designed by Mary Colter. Photography artwork, books, souvenirs and rock and fossil specimens are sold here. A great view of Bright Angel Trail can be seen here.

Desert View Watchtower was built in 1932 and is one of Mary Colters best known works. The tower sits on a promontory and offers one of the few views of the bottom of the Canyon and the Colorado River.

Temperatures on the North Rim are generally lower than the South Rim because of the greater elevation. Heavy snowfall is common on both rims during the winter months. Access to the North Rim via the primary route leading to the canyon is limited during the winter season due to road closures. Views from the North Rim tend to give a better impression of the expanse of the canyon than those from the South Rim.

The Grand Canyon has suffered some problems with air pollution, attributed to nearby coal burning power plants.

Explore the grandeur of this world wonder on Grand Canyon helicopter or air tours, guided Grand Canyon jeep tours, Grand Canyon railway, Grand Canyon bus tours, or a embark on some guided Grand Canyon hiking or Grand Canyon river rafting tours.

There are many opportunities here for adventurous and hardy persons who want to backpack, ride a mule to Phantom Ranch, or take a river trip through the Canyon on the Colorado River. It can take anywhere from a few days to three weeks, there are no one day river trips through Grand Canyon.
About the Author
Douglas Scott writes for The Cheap Vehicle Hire Specialist. and is a free lance writer for The Arizona Villa Rental Site
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