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“A unique feel”

Ranked #1 of 20 things to do in Chinle
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Red cliff and canyon walls that are home to ancient Indian ruins.
Reviewed August 26, 2008

Of all the national parks and canyons we visited, the Canyon de Chelly has an almost tangeable sense of spirtituality. We took the south rim drive out of Chinle and didn't bother with an expensive rip-off Jeep tour; reception at the hotel was setting up some people with $75 per person jeep trips into the canyon. Granted that except the White House Overlook, this is the only way you'll get to experience the bottom of the canyon but personally I wouldn't bother as the views from the top are exceptional. The White House Overlook is a highlight as is Spider Rock which is at the end of the drive. We didn't take the North Rim Drive due to time constraints but can recommend the South; we took two to three hours with short walks and photo stops. Even after having just experienced the majesty of the Grand Canyon, we still didn't feel short-changed visiting the Canyon de Chelly as it has, as I said before, a spiritual and intimate atmosphere creating a unique sense of place.

3  Thank flos
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,235 - 1,239 of 1,487 reviews

Reviewed August 14, 2008

Here is man you need to use for a great adventure. Blending history, geology, politics, native stories, he covers it all. You can occasionlly can ask a question if you're quick. Make your reservation before arriving to nail him down for the tour. He is professional, enthusiatic and conveys the essence of this beautiful place. The Holiday Inn was clean, comfortable and a fine place to stay. Have fun. Stuart

4  Thank Foreveryounger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 3, 2008

I've wanted to visit Canyon de Chelly for literally decades. When I finally got a chance, I read the reviews here and called up Adam at Antelope House Tours. We went on the 3 hour tour (sounds like "Gilligan's Island" eh?). It turns out Adam had so many clients that day that he took the bigger party and sent my wife and me with his father, Ben.

Ben Teller was an awesome guide. He was born and raised in Canyon de Chelly, and we visited some of the areas where he grew up, and also where he lives now. His daughter Tanya made lunch of Navajo tacos for us, and we ate them on a great picnic table under a shady cottonwood tree. Ben was knowledgeable, polite, and patient. One huge advantage of having our own tour guide was that we could stop wherever we wanted for as long as we wanted, get out and walk around, etc. It was a way different experience than the Thunderbird tour participants looked to be having.

So my recommendation is to call Adam at Antelope House Tours, and go on his half day tour. I'm sure he's an awesome tour guide, too, but his father is definitely top notch. Be sure to ask Adam to get his sister to have lunch waiting for you at the Antelope House, and strongly consider buying an extra hour so there's plenty of time for sightseeing and relaxing.

9  Thank ToddBradley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 14, 2008

I took a day long tour out of the Thunderbird Lodge. The often referred to "shake and bake" truck tour. Shaking was minimal, and since it was April, no baking. The day was too drawn out to really enjoy, and boring. The sites were all fenced off. You could not get closer than a football field to the canyon walls. And since the ruins were all up into the cliffs you were even farther from them. You neeeded binoculars to really see anything.
There were no plaques/maps/diagrams/descriptions anywhere, so you were dependent on your guide for any information...even the National Park brochure was insufficient (if you stopped to get one).
I found that my guide was more interested in telling us about present day locals then ancient inhabitants. And every stop seemed to have more than a few venders waiting for the next tourist drop.
The canyon itself was not very spectacular, high, or interesting. If you have a choice, go to the Grand Canyon for your views.

8  Thank SquirePM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 14, 2008

Adam Teller of Antelope House Tours is excellent. I decided to go with him due to the great reviews right on this sight. The great reviews are 100% deserved. He took my husband, 10 year old daughter and I for a half day tour of Canyon de Chelly. We used his new 4 door jeep which was very roomy and comfortable. He tends to be quiet at first so ask as many questions as you like. By your questions, he figures out how to personalize your tour. He does not do the same old speech for everyone. He figures out your interest first and goes from there which we loved. For us, we were more interested in his history, way of life, the ruins and just humurous stories. He lives in the canyon during the summer. We got to see his house which is located right in front of the Antelope House Ruins that he and his family helped restore. He is studying to be a medicine man and is a great story teller. We met his cousins, aunts, uncles, nieces etc. My daughter bought a necklace and bracelet from one of Adam's nieces. It was very personable and we loved it. The canyon itself is gorgeous. It was fun finding all the ruins in the cliffs and finding the funny shaped rocks (Turtle Rock, Kitty Cat Rock, Bear Rock, Man who sticks his nose in our business Rock, Wolf Howling Rock). Not to mention it was a blast driving right down the middle of the canyon, splashing through the water and making our way through mud. If you ever get to go visit Canyon de Chelly, take the best Navajo tour guide around, Adam Teller. Make sure you ask him about some of his stupid tourist stories, they are a hoot.

12  Thank mudballer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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