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I'M A FULL TIME DESTINATION WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER, 100% IN LOVE WITH ADVENTUROUS ELOPEMENTS + SMALL WEDDINGS.

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3 Things to Know About Antelope Canyon | Antelope Canyon Wedding Pictures | Page, Arizona | Arizona Elopement Photographer

I get messages about wedding images in Antelope Canyon just about weekly, so I decided to make a blog post giving you aaaaaall the tips. The slot canyons up in Page are BEYOND gorgeous and definitely worth adding to your bucket list. Whether you just want to visit them one day or you want Antelope Canyon wedding pictures, this blog post is for you!!

I’m going give you all the information about not only how to see these gorgeous slot canyons, but the things that you need to know in order to have wedding images in them (trust me when I say that there’s a lot of info to know!)

Let’s dive in!!

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1. You must be a part of a guided tour to access it

Antelope Canyon is located in Page, Arizona and sits on protected Navajo land. Since it’s on protected land, you are ONLY permitted to access it through a tour booked with one of the several licensed tour operators in town.

There’s two parts to Antelope Canyon – the upper and the lower. Read more about the differences between the two next to #2, listed below!

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The tour companies used to offer photography tours for Antelope Canyon, but these were discontinued in 2019 to improve the experience for larger number of people on the general tours. Those photography tours were only available to those with a DSLR professional camera and a tripod. You were put in a group with several other photographers, with the purpose of that tour being to take epic landscape images of the canyon. People often confused that photography tour with one that you could book to take wedding images in the canyon, when in reality they were only for landscape images. The tour companies now only offer sightseeing tours in Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon.

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There’s SO many tour companies that you can book with to see these gorgeous canyons. When I went to Upper Antelope Canyon, I booked the prime time sightseeing tour slot with Antelope Slot Canyon Tours. It was a great experience, despite the insane crowds in the canyon as you’re walking through it (Seriously – you’re packed in like sardines. It’s intense)

The tours range from $50-$85 per person for an hour tour, depending on the company, tour time and canyon that you’re visiting. Here’s a few tour companies you can look into booking:  

Upper Canyon: 

Antelope Slot Canyon Tours 

Antelope Canyon Navajo Tours

Lower Canyon:  

Dixie Ellis Antelope Lower Canyon 

Kens Lower Antelope Canyon Tours 

The Upper Antelope Canyon tours typically books up months in advance, so definitely plan ahead of you’re wanting to check it out!

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2. Upper or Lower Canyon? Best time of day?

The Upper Canyon is the more ‘iconic’ one that you’ve likely seen images of. It’s a super simple walk through the canyon, less than a mile long! Lower Canyon requires climbing down a few ladders but is equally breathtaking. 

The best time to visit the canyons is mid-afternoon for the iconic light shafts you’ve see in images of this place. Most tour companies consider the 10:30/11:00 time slot to be the prime sunbeam tour.  Per Antelope Slot Canyon Tours, “The colors are fairly uniform throughout the canyon and visibility is good.  If some of the colors are not as brilliant, be assured that at their worst, they are spectacular.  We linger at the sunbeams which pour down like heavenly messages.  We will have little chance to be alone in the canyon on this tour, nor will we be able to hear the quiet that some of the other tour-times provide, but this is a visual extravaganza. Sunbeam comes in from April 1 – Sept 30.”

Another prime-time slot is around 1:00pm! Antelope Slot Canyon Tours also said: “The colors are very similar to the late morning tour, but the north end is slowly becoming the brightest, most colorful end.  Some of the people are beginning to thin out, which allows you a more personal experience.  A marvelous blend of color, shape and majesty will strike you on this tour!”

I went on a 10:30 tour in August, and was able to snag some INCREDIBLE sunbeam images on my camera as we were walking through. Check it out below – SO worth it!

3. Portrait Photography and Wedding Pictures are Not Permitted 

In order to take any ‘posed’ type of images (engagement session, wedding pictures, etc), you’re required to book a private photo-specific tour for just the people being photographed and the photographer. These types of tours are not typically listed on websites for tour companies, it takes calling around to find a tour company that offers it! But – here’s the kicker: the Navajo Nations requires the photographer to obtain a $100 photo permit along with a booked private photo-specific tour for when taking those types of images. They DO NOT give permits for Upper or Lower Antelope Canyon, period. Tour companies might tell you that they offer that type of tour, but you will be unable to obtain the required photo permit from Navajo Nations, so don’t even try calling any tour companies for Upper or Lower Canyon to book with them for this. 

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There are however several other slot canyons in Page similar to Antelope Canyon, that DO allow this! I personally prefer a different slot canyon over Antelope, simply because it’s longer and has more variety to the look of it. I’ve taken wedding images multiple times in other canyon in the area, and would love to walk you through the process of it, if you’re wanting to have those GORGEOUS wedding images in these incredible slot canyons! For an example of a slot canyon that allows these types of images, click HERE to check out a past elopement I shot! It’s truly breathtaking. 

Also, the best part? You are the ONLY ones in the canyon, along with me and our tour guide with this type of tour. Plus – some of the other slot canyons give you twice the amount of time in the canyon, around 2-3 hours instead of just 1. The private photo-specific tours are definitely more pricey to book (around $600 in total for 3 people at minimum) but it truly is such an amazing way to experience a slot canyon and absolutely worth ever penny. Plus, you’re going to have some dang epic wedding or engagement images as a result!

Friends, there you have it. You now are fully prepared with all the knowledge you need to book your sightseeing tour for Upper or Lower Antelope Canyon, as well as how to book for your slot canyon wedding pictures! ENJOY!!

Cheers!

Allison

Want to book with me for your (similar to) Antelope Canyon Wedding Pictures OR your  proposal, engagement or elopement? Click here to read all about my pricing and collections!

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