In our new regular column, Places of Pinterest, we’ll serve up the low down on those iconic travel images that pinners love – how to get there, where to stay, what else to see nearby… all the details that you need to turn your virtual daydream into reality.

Antelope Canyon

This time: Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Where: The canyon consists of two parts – Upper Antelope Canyon and Lower Antelope Canyon –  and both are located on Navajo Native American land in the southwestern United States near Page, Arizona.

What: The slot canyons, as these are known, were formed by erosion to the Navajo Sandstone due to flash floods – continuous water movement is what has given these canyons their characteristic flowing shapes. These dramatic land formations are popular on Pinterest for their seemingly otherworldly streams of light and range of colors.

How: Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon are both accessible by permit in the Navajo Tribal Park. The Upper canyon is most popular with tourists because it’s accessible at ground level – no climbing is required to visit – and the iconic beams of light are more frequent here than in Lower, especially between March and October. Mostly visited by photographers, the Lower canyon now has metal staircases for visitor use.

The safest, and only, way to visit the canyon is through a guided tour, because both canyons are still prone to sudden, powerful flash floods, even if little or no rain has fallen in the area. A general tour lasts about 1.5 hours and is scheduled according to peak times for light beams. Photographic tours, only for serious photographers and students, last about two hours. Tours can be booked and paid for in Page, and range from between $30 to $80 per person.

Antelope Canyon

Photo Tips: If shooting with a SLR camera, use long exposure time and a tripod. With a point and shoot, use a short exposure and no flash.

What Else: Also of interest nearby are the Glen Canyon Dam, Lake Powell and the Colorado River, which eventually runs through the Grand Canyon.

Stay: Luxury accommodation in this area is limited. The Amangiri retreat in Utah is one of the best upscale options, but in and around Page there are mid-level various hotels and homey bed and breakfasts. To make your trip unique, we suggest renting a houseboat on Lake Powell or one of the other bodies of water nearby. Check out Wahweap Marina, where there are plenty of houseboats to rent for every budget – some, like the Axion Star Lake Yacht, are even quite luxurious.

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