Lower Vs Upper Antelope

By Ryan / September 16, 2015

A frequently asked question is which is tour is better between Upper and Lower Antelope.

Upper Antelope is considerably more popular both in overall visitation and people in the canyon at one time. A common complaint over the years is how crowded Upper Antelope can by. However, you would be hard pressed to be able to tell the difference in photographer between the two canyons.

Lower Antelope is just as beautiful as Upper Canyon, but has serious mobility issues for anybody with joint or strength issues. At a minimum, you must be able to climb multiple ladders at high incline.

The reward for this is that you will be in the canyon with 10x less people. Upper canyon is only 300 feet long, and can easily have 100 people in it at a time. Lower canyon usually has significantly less people that that. In addition, Lower Antelope is a one way hike, so it helps manage the flow of visitors.


About the author


Ryan is an avid hiker and long time resident of Page, AZ. What he lacks in spelling and grammatical expertise he makes up for with extensive knowledge from a lifetime of questionable choices and the ability to ask for help from great editors

Rick - February 22, 2017

Thanks Ryan! Coming in April! Can’t wait! Think about a week there before going on to zion with the rv. Another other great hikes i need to do??

    Alley Keosheyan - February 28, 2017

    Hi Rick,
    Ryan is out of the office, but I’d be happy to help you!
    The fact that you have a week there is great, Northern Arizona and Southern Utah have a lot to offer. As for other hikes you might do, the Paria Wilderness Area is considered the “holy grail” of hiking experiences in the Page/Lake Powell area, and for good reason. The scenery is astounding, some might say other-worldly, especially at an area known as The Wave. It also has such revered status because entry to this area requires a permit, which can be somewhat difficult to obtain. Here’s more information on it if you’re interested https://www.blm.gov/az/st/en/arolrsmain/paria/coyote_buttes.html
    If you’re not able to snag a permit for Paria – April is a popular time to visit that area, so that’s very likely to be the case – visit this site for more suggestions of memorable hikes that are more accessible — https://www.nps.gov/glca/planyourvisit/day-hikes.htm
    Good luck and happy traveling,

Lorena - March 8, 2017


I’m considering take a family trip during spring break (last week of March). My kids love exploring and I think Antelope Canyon would be beautiful and education for our kids (and us parents too!). I like that the lower Antelope Canyon is less crowded but the stairs may be too difficult for my kids (ages 3.5 and 6). Do you have any other recommendations for places to visit in the area that are good for little kids?

Thank you!

    Alley Keosheyan - March 14, 2017

    Hello and thanks for visiting our site!
    If you think the stairs in Lower Antelope Canyon might be too much for your kids to handle (and you’re probably right about that), plan to visit Upper Antelope Canyon. It’s an easy 100-yard that’s mostly flat, so it’s good for people of all physical fitness levels. If you wish to avoid the crowds in Upper Antelope Canyon, consider touring at one of the “off-times,” such as early morning or mid-afternoon. The interior of the canyon isn’t as brightly illuminated at those times, but still beautiful.
    As for other activities to do with young children, the John Wesley Powell Memorial Museum and the Glen Canyon Dam Visitors Center have displays tailored to children. They can also earn their “Junior Ranger” badge at any National Park or Monument. Different parks have different programs, so check upon arrival as to what’s being offered, or visit https://www.nps.gov/glca/learn/kidsyouth/beajuniorranger.htm to learn more.
    Happy traveling!

Matan - April 26, 2017


Just a quick question – I have a full day in page, and I was wondering if I should do both upper and lower canyons or just one of them… either way I plan on doing horseshoe bend at sunset.. would love to hear your opinion..

Thanks, Matan

    Alley Keosheyan - April 27, 2017

    Hi Matan,
    Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon are different enough from one another to ensure that you won’t be bored by any means exploring both. Lower Antelope Canyon requires some stair climbing and mile boulder scrambling whereas Upper is a straightforward 100-yard walk.
    As for seeing Horseshoe Bend at sunset, remember that the overlook faces due East so the sun might be in your eyes at that time. Still, people seem to agree that there’s no such thing as a “bad” time to see it! Best time to visit Horseshoe Bend article
    Good luck!

Margaret - January 25, 2018

We are planning a trip to Antelope Canyon in March during spring break. What is the best time of day to schedule a tour. Which would you recommend: upper or lower canyon? How strenuous is the hike? Thinking of bringing my 70 year old (in pretty good shape) mom along. There are several tour companies out there. Can you suggest which one to go with?

    Alley Keosheyan - January 25, 2018

    Hi Margaret, and thank you for visiting our site today!
    For most parties with seniors, we tend to recommend Upper Antelope Canyon as the safer bet of the two, but then again we have folks 70-80+ hike Lower Antelope Canyon every day without trouble. In order to gauge its feasibility accurately for yourselves, we recommend watching this video of a Lower Antelope Canyon Walk-Through. If you decide against Lower Antelope, then Upper it is.
    As for which tour company we recommend, in all honesty, it’s whoever has availability at the time closest to when you want to go. Between the different outfitters, the tours themselves are virtually identical, right down to the footstep, and the penny 😉 How To Book A Tour Of Antelope Canyon.
    Hope that helps. Good luck and safe travels!

Sarah - January 26, 2018

Which (upper or lower) do you suggest if we will have our 20month old son with us?

    Alley Keosheyan - January 26, 2018

    Hi Sarah,
    Upper Antelope Canyon would probably be the best bet for a family with a toddler in tow. Lower, I would imagine, is a bit too long and too physical. Plus it would probably be awkward carrying your son through some of the tighter squeezes.
    Hope that helps. Whatever you choose, be sure to make your tour reservations well in advance of your arrival.
    Have a great day!
    Alley 🙂

    Pau - February 21, 2018

    Hi Sarah,

    Could you tell me what was your choice?

    Do you finally visit lower Canyon with your toddler?
    Was it a good idea?

    Thanks a lot.


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