Trip

Grand Canyon Float Tours Are Terrific Springtime Trips!

Guess what? Spring is almost here! Now is when travelers should start thinking about locking down their spring 2013 tours to the Grand Canyon. Savvy travelers often include single-day Grand Canyon rafting tours. These are relaxing, smooth-water (not whitewater) float trips, and people of all ages can participate.

Starting Points

Grand Canyon rafting trips start from two places – the South Rim in Arizona, and Las Vegas, in Nevada. Trips originating at the South Rim stay in that area, while Vegas tours are a great way to explore the nearby West Rim. As of today, there isn’t any way to get directly from one rim to the other so you’ll probably choose the rim you’re closest to.

So far, South Rim rafting tours are shaping up to be some of the most popular spring 2013 tours around. You can book a basic package or upgrade to a more deluxe Grand Canyon rafting adventure. The basic version starts with a bus trip to Page, Arizona. After driving through the tunnel at the base of Glen Canyon Dam, you’ll meet your professional guide and board your pontoon boat.

On the deluxe version of this tour, participants fly to Page, Arizona instead of riding in a bus. After the plane lands, you’ll hop aboard a Jeep for a 4×4 tour that takes you to the famous slot canyons of Antelope Canyon. Afterward you’ll go to Glen Canyon Dam, where the rafting portion of the tour starts.

Horseshoe Bend

You’ll be on the water for 15 miles, quietly gliding by Horseshoe Bend and other remarkable sights. This part of the canyon is one of the most untouched by man, and it’s a terrific experience. After lunch on a private beach, you’ll end up at Lee’s Ferry. This historic place once was the only site where people could cross the Colorado River for hundreds of miles in either direction.

For those of you starting out from Las Vegas, the West Rim float tour is actually part of a tour package that also includes a chopper landing on the canyon floor. The West Rim is the only place in the canyon where ‘copters are allowed to land on the bottom, so this portion of the tour is a unique experience.

The rafting segment of the tour begins at the base of mighty Hoover Dam. Not many people can claim they’ve seen the dam from 700 feet below, but I’m glad I’m one of them!

Black Canyon

You’ll pass through beautiful Black Canyon during the 11-mile float trip down the Colorado. If you look up at the cliffs towering above, you might glimpse some big horn sheep. They’re majestic, and it’s great to see them in the wild. Your time on the river ends at Willow Beach, where you can take a refreshing dip (bring some swimming clothes!). From there, you’ll hop on a motor coach for the drive back to Sin City.

These tours are all-inclusive, meaning the price includes lunch, an expert tour guide’s services, hotel pickup and drop-off at Vegas Strip hotels, and all applicable Park fees. They’re extremely popular and supply is limited because they only run from March through November. That’s why it’s important to book early, especially for spring 2013 tours. You’ll need to book at least a week ahead of the date you want. To be even more certain you’ll get the tour you want, buy your tickets as soon as you decide to take one of these wonderful adventures.

Buy online, because that’s where you’ll find the best deals. Don’t bother with travel sites like Orbitz, Expedia or Viator. As long as you complete your purchase online, you’ll get the lowest price canyon float tours by buying directly on the tour company’s own website. Some major discounts are there for the picking if you follow this strategy!

Things to Do and Places to See When Taking a Trip Down to Nashville

Have you ever been to Nashville? If you have not, then you should consider it. If you’ve never been to the South, then what are you waiting for! Nashville is an incredible city and one of the most fun places to visit south of the Mason Dixon line.

The list of reasons to visit Nashville is extensive, but the following are some of the best reasons to make a trip to Music City.

Do you like to eat breakfast? Chances are, you do and if you do, then there is no better breakfast to be had in the United States of America than at Loveless Motel in Nashville. It is a little bit of a trek from the main part of the city, about a 25 minute drive outside of the city, but the drive is scenic and the food is that good. The place is well known for their biscuits and fried chicken and is the best brunch I’ve ever had.

Sorry just some more thoughts on the Loveless biscuits. They are worth the trip to Nashville alone. Ok, maybe not, but they are the best biscuits that I’ve ever had, and every one of my southern friends agrees. That’s got to count for something.

If pancakes are your thing, then Pancake Pantry is another great breakfast option. The sweet potato pancakes are incredible, as is everything else on the menu. The place is well known for long waits, so bring a newspaper to help the time pass. It is worth the wait.

Downtown Nashville is unlike any other city. The bright lights, country music, karaoke music help create a unique atmosphere. If you find yourself in downtown Nashville, be sure to visit Printer’s Alley, an off the beaten path alley with great bars. The Hard Rock CafĂ© is also located downtown and is situated right along the Cumberland River.

Nashville may be best known for the Grand Ole Opry. The unofficial home of country music, the Grand Ole Opry is a legendary venue that every country great has visited. If you are in town and love (or hate) country music, it should be at the top of your to-do list.

Vanderbilt University is another selling point of Nashville. The campus is a ten minute drive from downtown Nashville and is a beautiful area. If you are into nature or trees, another selling point is that Vanderbilt is a national arboretum.