This private tour through the famous "Grand Circle" of spectacular scenery of the Colorado Plateau in Utah and the surrounding states begins in Salt Lake City, UT. With our luxury tour company, you will be able to see and do more when compared to that of a standard bus or a group tour, in less amount of time, in comfort and only with those you have invited to join you on the journey.
Although the schedule below indicates 4 days, please remember, this can be a customized trip just for you and your requested attractions. We can delete or add to as necessary to meet your timeline.
Your guide will be with you each step of the way and of course act as your porter, concierge and park guide. This Four Day tour is one that the whole family will enjoy and is the perfect balance between times in the vehicle and being outside in the beautifully wild and rugged states of Utah & Arizona.
A Quick Overview:
Day 1: Private Guided Tour of Bryce Canyon NP
Expect to be met by a Utah Luxury Tour guide with a smile and an enticing passion for this unique scenery we like to call our backyard. Your guide will meet you at a hotel of your choice in Salt Lake City, UT or Las Vegas, NV. Should you choose to begin your adventure in Las Vegas, your guide will drive you north on I-15 through Virgin River Canyon in the Arizona Strip before entering the beautiful high desert of Southwestern Utah. Should your starting point be Salt Lake City, your guide will drive south along the Wasatch Range and over the mountain passes of I-15 before entering Southwestern Utah.
Private Guided Tour of Bryce Canyon National Park – The Hoodoo Country,
“It is a hell of a place, to lose a cow.” - Ebenezer Bryce, 1875
Bryce Canyon, famous for its worldly unique geology, consists of a series of horseshoeshaped amphitheaters. The erosional force of frost wedging and the dissolving power of rainwater have shaped the colorful limestone rock into bizarre shapes including slot canyons, windows, fins and spires called "hoodoos".
Legend has it that the Paiute Tribe (the people that lived in Bryce Canyon when the white settlers came to Southern Utah) shared mythological stories of the Sinawava God's or "tricksters," who would turn the "Legend People" into stone. These stone formations that you will see are known as, Hoodoos. Aside from the obvious geological past that Bryce Canyon has, it also offers timeless tales and myths. Archeologists found ancestral Puebloan and Fremont cultural artifacts in Bryce though both groups have a history of residing in the Canyonlands and Capitol Reef National Park areas.
Along the plateau rim geology catches your eye. Nearby forests and meadows stand in contrast to the intricately eroded rocks. As we are touring the park's 18-mile-long road, your ULT guide will explain the ancient sedimentation, uplift, and erosion process of Bryce Canyon. The park is situated on the Paunsaugunt Plateau at an elevation of 8,000 feet.
Sunrise Points, Sunset Points, Inspiration Points, and Bryce Points encircle Bryce Amphitheater, the biggest natural amphitheater in the park. Your ULT guide can recommend several hiking options in different parts of the park.
Queens Garden: This hike begins at Sunrise Point and descends 320 feet below the rim. It is the least difficult trail to reach the amphitheater floor and the Queen Victoria area. (1.8 miles out and back)
Navajo Trail: This moderate trail begins at Sunset Point, is 1.3 miles round-trip and descends 550 feet to the floor of the amphitheater, passing iconic Thor's Hammer and Two Bridges.
Queens Garden to Navajo Loop: We recommend combining the two above-mentioned trails into a single hike. We believe this will be the most beautiful 3 miles you will ever hike!
Bristlecone Loop Trail: At the southern end of the park at an elevation of 9,100 feet, this easy trail meanders through the forest of Blue Spruce, Douglas Fir and White Fir, passing bristlecone pines that are up to 1,800 years old. (1mile round-trip, 200 feet elevation change)
Mossy Cave: The Mossy Cave is a grotto created by an underground spring. This uncrowded trail is 0.9 miles round-trip, and ascends 300 feet to the Cave.
Rim Trail – Sunset Point to Sunrise Point: Follow the Rim Trail for an easy, wheelchair friendly walk of 1mile on a flat well-maintained path.
If available, we recommend you stay in Bryce Canyon Lodge, which was built from local timber and stone in the 1920's. Being the only lodging within the national park, it truly offers a one-of-a- kind experience. The lodge was designed by Gilbert Stanley Underwood who gave it a similar rustic style to some of his other lodges such as Jackson Lake Lodge in Grand Teton, Lake Yellowstone Hotel, and Ahwanee Hotel at Yosemite.
This classic historic lodge offers a full-service restaurant, and a gift shop showcasing Native American jewelry and art. The primary reasons we recommend this property are the stargazing opportunities as well as the short walking distance to Bryce Amphitheater. The lack of light pollution, high elevation and the dry desert air combine to create the darkest skies in the Southwest.
Private Guided Tour of Zion National Park – the Sanctuary
"All this is the music of waters." – John Wesley Powell, 1895
From the very beginning of its origin, people sought this place, this sanctuary, this worldly heaven found in the desert's dry reaches. The very name Zion, meaning "promised land," evokes its significance. After arriving to the town of Springdale, you will embark on a truly great adventure. You will have the opportunity to follow the paths where ancient people and pioneers walked, gazing up at massive sandstone cliffs.
In the year 2000, a free public shuttle system was introduced to help reduce car congestion. This is the only way (during high season) to enter inside the park. As you begin working your way through Zion Canyon, your ULT guide will assess the hike(s) best suited to the conditions and your preferences.
Zion Hiking Options
Riverside Walk: This trail is wheelchair-accessible and follows the Virgin River (2.2 miles round-trip, 60ft elevation change).
Lower Emerald Pool Trail: A paved trail leading to the Lower Emerald Pool and waterfalls. (1.2 miles round-trip, 70ft elevation change)
Weeping Rock: A short, but steep paved trail ending at a rock alcove with seeping springs and hanging gardens. (0.4 miles round-trip, 100ft elevation change) Kayenta Trail to Lower Emerald Pools: Unpaved climb to the Emerald Pools (1.6 miles roundtrip, 150ft elevation change)
Canyon Overlook Trail: Our guides' favorite! This rocky and uneven trail ends with dramatic views of Pine Creek Canyon and lower Zion Canyon below. (1 mile roundtrip, 160ft elevation change)
Angel's Landing Trail: We will climb up 21 switchbacks called Walter's Wiggles on our way to Scout Lookout, then continue up through the last section, which follows a narrow ridge with 1500 foot drop-offs and safety chains to assist your climb. Your efforts will be rewarded with panoramic views of Zion Canyon and the Great White Throne. (5.4 miles round-trip, 1500ft elevation change)
The Narrows: Zion's signature hike is hiking in the Virgin River itself inside the beautiful canyon walls. This hike is recommended for those with hiking experience and good balance, as you will hike through the running water along a slippery rock bottom. We will provide you with a walking stick and water-friendly shoes to negotiate the challenging surface. Your ULT guide will discuss further details with you regarding weather conditions and preparations for this hike. (2-4 miles round-trip, in running water)
During the day we will stop for a delicious lunch at the Zion Lodge designed by Gilbert Stanley Underwood. Underwood was a very successful American architect in the early 20th century. He is responsible for the design of more than 15 lodges, union stations, hotels, post offices, and department stores that are scattered all across the USA. After lunch, we will suggest a brief stop at the Zion Human History Museum, where you will become much more acquainted with the story behind charming Zion. Should you choose another alternative, let us know and we will gladly make it happen.
Cliffrose Lodge & Gardens
Nestled in the heart of Zion's Sanctuary in Springdale, UT and bordering Zion National Park along the Virgin River is the Cliffrose Lodge & Gardens. Cliffrose is a unique riverside boutique resort with clean, comfortable, and relaxing rooms & suites. It is a great place to call home while visiting Zion National Park.
Nestled in the heart of Zion’s Sanctuary in Springdale, Utah and bordering Zion National Park along the Virgin River, the Cliffrose Lodge & Gardens is a truly unique riverside boutique resort with clean, comfortable, and relaxing rooms and suites. It is a great place to call home for visiting Zion National Park and other area national parks like Bryce Canyon and the Grand Canyon North Rim, weekend getaways, romantic escapes, destination weddings, family vacations, or just to enjoy the view and the peaceful atmosphere.
DAY 3: Private Guided Tour of the Grand Canyon – North Rim
"In the Grand Canyon, Arizona has a natural wonder which is in kind absolutely
unparalleled throughout the rest of the world. I want to ask you to keep this great wonder
of nature as it now is. I hope you will not have a building of any kind, not a summer
cottage, a hotel or anything else, to mar the wonderful grandeur, the sublimity, the great
loneliness and beauty of the canyon. Leave it as it is. You cannot improve on it. The
ages have been at work on it, and man can only mar it."
A 2.5-hour drive from Springdale/ Zion area brings us to the spectacle of the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Along the way we will drive through the marvel of what is 1920's engineering; the 1.1-mile long Zion Tunnel. During the drive, your ULT guide will tell you all about the history of the tunnel and the brave souls who were responsible for building it. Passing Jacob Lake, we will ascend the Kaibab Plateau.
The Grand Canyon – one of Earth's most powerful, inspiring landscapes – overwhelms our senses. Its story tells of geologic processes played out over an unimaginable time span. Its unique combination of size, color, and dazzling erosion continues along a stretch of 277 miles and is up to 18 miles wide. Geologically the canyon is significant because of the sequence of ancient rocks that are preserved yet exposed along its walls. These layers of rock – from 258-million-year-old limestone capping the rim to 1.8-billionyear- old Vishnu Schist a mile below – record much of the early history of the North American continent. The carving of the canyon is only the most recent chapter, a geologic blink of an eye, in a very long story.
Please take time to pause on the rim and enjoy this work of ages, the art of our Earth.
Extreme changes in elevation, exposure and climate, support a remarkable range of plant and animal communities unusually close together – from the desert next to the Colorado River up to Montane Forests at the North Rim. ULT guides have knowledge regarding the natural history of the entire region, and will explain the aspects of Riparian Areas, Deserts, Pinyon-Juniper, Ponderosa Pine and Montane Forest.
Out of 5 million visitors per year, the North Rim side of the Grand Canyon sees only 10% of those visitors. The more remote North Rim sits 1,000 feet higher than the South Rim, giving us a chance to experience not only fewer crowds, but also an appreciation for the solitary beauty of the canyon that has been home to Native Americans for thousands of years. In addition, many of the most beautiful buttes, also known as temples, sit closer to the North Rim than the South. You will discover the human history of the Ancestral Puebloan people, and learn about enigmatic split-twig figurines and hand-made clay pots. The canyon is considered one of the 7 Wonders of the Natural World.
Our guide will show you the historic Grand Canyon Lodge built in 1929. From there, a short paved trail leads to Bright Angel Point. Your ULT guide will point out marine fossils as well as a 600-year-old Juniper tree.
After you have taken in the views, we will treat you to a lunch at the Lodge. The Grand Canyon Lodge has a menu consisting of regional specialties.
Our next stop on the tour will be Point Imperial. This point is the highest overlook of the Grand Canyon, sitting at 8,803 feet, providing commanding views of Marble Canyon, and the Painted Desert, as well as the Navajo nation lands.
Depending on the time available and your interest, the Cape Royal Road leads to Roosevelt Point and Cape Royal, which is the southernmost point of the North Rim. Two available short hikes in this area include Walhalla Glade and the Cliff Springs Trail along Cape Royal Road. After one-half mile on the Cliff Springs trail, you will find an ancient Native American granary as well as a seep. For more strenuous hiking options, ask your guide about the North Kaibab Trail to Coconino Overlook or Supai Tunnel.
In the evening, you will return to your preferred accommodations in Page.
Amangiri, meaning "peaceful mountain", is a 600-acre resort offering beautiful and exquisite accommodations that provide a luxury stay of a lifetime. It offers amazing suites embodied with natural features of its surrounding land. The sweeping views of dunes, sunsets, and mesas towards Grand Staircase – Escalante National Monument can be seen from the comfort of a cozy bed or warm jacuzzi. This resort not only offers aesthetic pleasure, but also first class dining and a variety of outdoor activities, along with spa and wellness services.
Other accommodation options are available in the town of Page.
Day 3 Alternate: Private Guided Tour of the Grand Canyon – South Rim
(During the winter and early spring months, the North Rim is not accessible due to snow and our tours visit the South Rim side of the Park.)
Our first stop is the Mather Point, which is both famous and crowded, but provides views that extend 10 miles across the canyon. A short stroll along the Rim Trail (0.7 miles) to Yavapai Point will offer an opportunity to enjoy a difference perspective.
We will visit the Historic District, where we can find the original 1909 log-built train depot as well as the iconic El Tovar Hotel from 1905. We can wave at the backpackers making their way down the Bright Angel Trail, a 10-mile strenuous hike down to the Colorado River.
If time allows, we will board the Hermits Rest Shuttle and follow the Rim Road. At the second pullout, Maricopa Point, we will point out the ruins of an old Uranium mine. From there we can walk 0.3 miles to Hopi Point. This promontory provides unobstructed views and is one of the best spots to watch the sunset on the South Rim.
After leaving the Grand Canyon Visitor's Center region, we will drive east along the Desert View Drive, which extends 25 miles to the Watchtower and the East Entrance. Along the way you will see the Grandview Point, and from our next stop, Moran Point, we can glimpse the Hance Rapids that are one of the steepest and most hazardous along the Colorado River. From Lipan Point further east, we can see all the way to the Vermillion Cliffs as well as the Painted Desert. Desert View is a quarter-mile walk from the parking lot, with the option to climb the 85 steps to the top of the 70-foot Watchtower.
This structure is modeled after ancient ancestral Puebloan watchtowers found in the Four Corners region. From the top of the tower – the South Rim's highest point – we will point out Navajo Mountain, as well as the Colorado River flowing 5,000 feet below.
For those interested, a spectacular way to appreciate the vastness and depth of the canyon is to take a short 45-minute helicopter scenic flight above the Canyon rim.
Please inquire about this optional excursion before you depart on your tour to allow us to book seats in advance for your group.
In the evening, you will return to your preferred accommodations in Page.
Day 4: Exploring Lake Powell and Navajo-led Antelope Slot Canyon Tour
We have arranged for a tour led by a native Navajo guide into Antelope Canyon, a slot canyon famous for its photographic opportunities.
Following your tour in Antelope Canyon, we will have lunch in Page before departing for the afternoon boat tour on Lake Powell.
This 2.5-hour boat tour offers some of the most breathtaking views on the lake as it passes Glen Canyon Dam and Antelope Canyon, which is over 10 miles long. You can admire the towering Navajo Sandstone geologic formations; their stunning red and burnt orange colors might quite possibly leave you speechless. The sheer walls of the Navajo Canyon tower over 600 feet above the water. It truly is a sight to see.
For groups of 5 guests or more, we arrange for a private boat and crew for you to enjoy an exclusive experience on Lake Powell. This option is also available to smaller groups for an additional fee. Please inquire before departing on your tour.
To finish the day, we highly recommend a short 25-minute walk to Horseshoe Bend – famous for its stunning beauty and for the opportunity to take an iconic photograph of its vistas.
In the late afternoon hours we will head back to Salt Lake City, Utah or Las Vegas, Nevada.
Dear Utah Luxury Tours,
It's been a few weeks and we're getting back to our normal routine. Just want to thank you again for the amazing trip (covering 5 states and 5 National Parks) you custom tailored for us. The parks were great, the scenery spectacular, and the amount of territory we covered was unreal. But the true essence of the trip was our guide's enthusiastic involvement, pleasantness, patience, and flexibility, from his accommodation of our dietary requirements to his detailed knowledge of all the areas we travelled. This made the journey not only extremely enjoyable, but informative and educational as well. Please feel free to use us as a reference for your unique touring company.
Best regards from Howard, Mimi, Maurice and Susan.
Sheila and Simeon
By now we hope that you are excited to experience the spectacular scenery of bottomless canyons, wild rivers, buttes, mesas, hoodoos and arches! The combination of rustic and rugged Wild West along with the luxury of your private tour guide, fine dining and excellent accommodations will create exceptional memories and stories to treasure. You will hear ancient myths and tales unique to the Indigenous people of the Southwest. This tour will allow you to reconnect with family and friends as you explore the best destinations that Utah has to offer.
Our destination specialists will help you choose your preferred type of accomodations in the area of our destinations – For this tour, we recommend a combination of 3 to 5 star lodging properties which include:
Please don't hesitate to contact us with any questions about the region, or details of our tours. We look forward to assisting you in any way we can with your trip planning.
Reserve your luxury adventure today! Call (855) 456-UTAH(8824)