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There is a reason why the American Southwest has been called one of the most beautiful and magical areas in the world. Experience the spirit of Utah, Arizona and New Mexico where you will immerse yourself in everything from the picturesque red rocks to the majestic landmark canyons to the native Indian culture of the Hopi, Navajo, Zumi. Pima and Apache tribes and overall western mystique.
This is more than a tour, it’s an experience that will last a lifetime.
Note: This tour is based on minimum 7 passengers. It is possible to book also a part (6 days or 10 days) of this tour. Price on request. There is a possibility to realize this tour with a less than 7 passengers as a private tour. Price on request.
Pick up at Phoenix Sky Harbor airport and transfer to hotel. The capital of Arizona, Phoenix is the most populated city in the American Southwest and the main cultural, economic, and transportation hub of the region. The metro Phoenix area is called the “Valley of the Sun”. Group meeting at 18.30h with a representative of Eco Explorer along with a guided walking tour. Overnight in Phoenix.
After breakfast we visit the Desert Botanical Garden, where desert plants are nestled amid the red rocks of the Papago Buttes. With five thematic trails to explore, it’s easy to get lost among the towering cacti, swaths of succulents, brilliant wildflowers, and lush trees. From 12-14h free time for lunch. After lunch time, we will have a guided tour of the Heard Museum of Native American Culture, one of the premier Native American museums in the United States. Here we can view Southwestern artifacts, history, crafts, and understand more about the lifestyles of many Southwestern Indian tribes. Afterward, we will return to hotel. Free activities. Overnight in Phoenix.
After breakfast, we will visit the Superstition Mountains, which are considered sacred mountains of the native Indians of Arizona. The Apache Indians believed there was a hole in the mountain that led to hell. These mountains were formed by volcanic eruptions that occurred over 15 million years ago. From 12-14h we will have free time for lunch. After lunch time, we visit the Lost Dutchman mine, a place where many enthusiasts still search for gold. According to the legend, this is the site of a hidden gold mine. Afterwards we will return to the hotel. Free activities. Overnight in Phoenix.
After breakfast, we will visit Montezuma Castle. This monument has adopted the title “castle” due to its majestic appearance. These 1,000-year-old ruins, built amongst the limestone, were actually a multi-family cliff dwelling – home to ancient Indians farmers. Enjoy the half-mile walk around this ancient ruin and use the opportunity to take lots of photos. Montezuma Well, just a few miles to the north, is a spring-fed sinkhole overlooked by pueblo structures in the cliffs. This well plays an important role in the mythology of the Native people of the region. After, we will drive to Sedona (30-minute drive) and arrive at the hotel ***. From 12-14h free time for lunch. After lunch, we will hike the famous Sedona Red Rocks for 2-3 hours. We will visit several vortex spots, which are energy nourishing and healing sacred spots. We will also do some stargazing. After, return to the hotel and overnight in Sedona.
After breakfast, we will visit Jerome, an old mining “ghost” town, where we will tour haunted hotels, crystal and kaleidoscope shops and mining and historical museums. Most popularly known as America’s most vertical city and largest ghost town in America, Jerome is now home to artists and musicians. From 12-14h free time for lunch. After lunch, we will visit a local winery with tastings included. At approximately 15.30h return to hotel in Sedona. Free activities. Overnight in Sedona.
After breakfast we will drive through the Sonoran Desert, on the way to one of the seven wonders of the world, the Grand Canyon (2-hour drive). There we will have an organized full-day tour and the opportunity to hike into the canyons south rim. Free time for lunch, taking photos, hiking and sightseeing. Meet at agreed time to transfer to hotel in Page, Arizona (1.5hrs drive). Accommodation and overnight in Page.
After breakfast we head to Lake Powell – a beautiful reservoir along the Colorado River amid the vast desert of Utah. It is the second largest man-made reservoir in the United States. Known for its many sandy beaches, sparkling blue water, and red-rock landscapes, this fun vacation spot is one of Arizona’s top attractions. After enjoying this beautiful lake, we will drive to the Navajo tribe area where we will have a guided tour by a native Navajo. We will have lunch inside the Navajo Nation Reservation. Free time in Navajo Community area. In late evening, return to hotel in Page. Free activities and overnight in Page.
After breakfast we head to Zion Canyon in Utah (1.45hrs of driving time). Time for hiking in Zion. Discover the natural grandeur of Zion as you admire high plateaus and a maze of narrow, deep, sandstone canyons with striking rock towers. Free time for lunch from 12-14h. Transfer from Zion to Bryce Canyon, Utah. Time for hiking Bryce Canyon. exploring landscapes of cliffs, gorges and otherworldly rock formations as you learn about the geology of the area, one of the most fascinating in the United States. Afterward, we return to Page (1.5hrs driving to hotel). Overnight in Page.
After breakfast we head to Antelope Canyon, a beautiful, mystical place that is considered one of the ultimate destinations for photographers from around the world. Time for hiking Antelope Canyon. The views change constantly as the sun moves across the sky, filtering lights softly across the stone walls. These ever-moving sun angles bounce light back and forth across the narrow canyon’s walls, creating a dazzling display of color, light, and shadow. After Antelope Canyon, we will continue our drive to Hopi Nation Reservation for an introduction to the culture of the Hopi people. Free time for lunch and free time in Hopi Community area. Return to hotel in Page in late evening. Overnight in Page.
After breakfast we leave for Chaco Canyon (UNESCO World Heritage Site), where we will tour and appreciate the remains of the ancient Puebla nations of the Anasazi people. This ancient site, is the Machu Picchu of North America. After, we will continue our drive to the New Mexico capital of Santa Fe. Short tour in Santa Fe, also known as “holy city”. We will explore small, winding roads in the residential district intertwined with Canyon Roads Gallery area to discover the traditional warmth of the New Mexican Pueblo style, the classic elegance of the Spanish territorial style, as well as the tall and narrow pitched roofs of the Northern New Mexico style. Then we may enjoy a refreshing prickly pear cactus ice tea or ‘Cota’ Indian tea with some homemade Bizcochito’s (native butter cookie) while relaxing in a traditional inner courtyard.
Free time for lunch. Arrival to hotel in Santa Fe. Free activities. Overnight in Santa Fe.
After breakfast we head to Albuquerque, NM. Upon arrival, we will have time for a short tour. It sits high in the Chihuahuan Desert in the foothills of the Sandia Mountains. The beauty of these natural surroundings are one of the main draws of New Mexico’s largest city. Historic neon signs still glow along old Route 66 through Albuquerque, which is now Central Avenue. There is a thriving arts scene in Albuquerque – there are hundreds of arts festivals every year – including many galleries with Native American art and jewelry. Free activities. Overnight in Albuquerque.
After breakfast departure to Tucson, AZ–one of the sunniest cities in the United States. Arrival to hotel in Tucson. Free time for lunch. After lunch our tour leader will walk us through historic Old Pueblo. Overnight in Tucson.
After breakfast we will tour the Biosphere 2, one of the world’s most unique facilities dedicated to the research and understanding of global scientific issues. Then we will have a guided tour of several famous spots of American “wild-west” history, such as Tombstone. This famous “wild-west” town is home to the OK Corral, the famous historic gunfight site. We will visit historic saloons, stores and museums and hear stories about Doc Holiday, Wyatt Earp and other “wild-west” characters as well as see live reenactments of gunfights. Free time for lunch. Free activities. Overnight in Tucson.
At 12.00 check-out of hotel and transfer to the airport in Phoenix (2 hour drive). Arrival at the airport at 14.00h. Southwest experience concludes.
Passport and visas
Your passport should be valid for six months after the date of your scheduled return home. Full passport details are required at the time of booking. Delays to provide this information may result in booking fees or changes to your itinerary.
Visa’s are not required for citizens of most countries in America and Western Europe. However, it is the responsibility of the individual traveler. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time. Also, remember to check whether a transit visa is required on route to join this trip or on the way home.
Make sure you have Travel Insurance and that you are adequately covered for Cancellation, Curtailment and Medical Insurance prior to your holiday departure. Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. When traveling on a trip, you won’t be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance. If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank’s name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in the country.
Couple of rules
Everyone has the right to feel safe and secure on their trip. We don’t tolerate any form of violence (verbal or physical) or sexual harassment.
Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our group leader has the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.
We like to call them “Leaders” and not “Guides” because they are essentially your well traveled, experienced friends! While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. Our Leaders main goals are to ensure everyone on the trip is having the best time possible. Your leader will provide information on the places you are traveling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. They know the trip locations well and have great relationships with all our contacts in each destination. Not to mention they are all extremely fun and easy going people who continue to showcase the essence of what makes us Eco Explorer!
Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however, during your trip you’ll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it’s deemed necessary due to safety concerns. While traveling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair or on the floor and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.
Our holidays are renowned for being friendly, fun experiences, and our small groups frequently include a significant number of single travelers. You’ll feel very welcome amongst people who share a passion for seeing the world on foot and the outdoor life.
Minimum group sizes
As with all group tour operators, we require a minimum number of participants to operate each holiday. Should this number not be reached, the holiday will not be commercially viable and we reserve the right to cancel it. This will be done reluctantly and an offer of a suitable alternative holiday will be provided wherever possible.