Popular Antelope Canyon Is Shutting Down Photo Tours Due to Overcrowding

by Eben Diskin Dec 12, 2019

It’s not often that stunning, picturesque locations get negative reviews, but that’s what’s happening at Upper Antelope Canyon in Arizona. After a flurry of negative reviews from tour attendees, citing a negative experience due to massive crowds, Navajo Nation Parks and Recreation has decided to stop running photo tours in the canyon after December 20, 2019.

Right now, the popular attraction offers photography tours that allow guests to bring tripods and have extended time in the canyon. They also have guides on-hand to make sure crowds don’t get in your shot. Guides will even throw sand and ash into the air to create the light beams for which the canyon is famous.

The canyon’s immense popularity has resulted in massive crowds of tourists, on both photography and regular tours, squeezed into the canyon’s narrow walls with photographers, in particular, clogging the way while they take photos. The overcrowding is no picnic for the regular visitor, but it’s also made the experience for photographers even worse, with many writing negative reviews and claiming that it’s certainly not worth the nearly $200 tour.

Standard “sightseeing tours” will remain available, and they will be the only way to visit Upper Antelope Canyon in the future. The sightseeing tours will allow visitors to bring their phones and cameras, but tripods and monopods will be banned.

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