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Lake Mead National Recreation Area

National parks

Our most recommended Lake Mead National Recreation Area National Parks

From Las Vegas: Grand Canyon West Rim Airplane Tour

1. From Las Vegas: Grand Canyon West Rim Airplane Tour

Get ready for a bird’s-eye view of one of the country’s most memorable natural wonders on this scenic airplane tour over the Grand Canyon. Benefit from hotel pickup and drop-off in Las Vegas and admire the canyon’s West Rim from above. Get picked up from your hotel in Las Vegas and head on down to Boulder Terminal for your check-in. Board the air-conditioned passenger aircraft, and prepare for take-off. Fly towards the West Rim of the Grand Canyon, passing over Lake Mead — the largest man-made lake in the US — and the Hoover Dam. Soar above the Colorado River and soak in the scenery as you cross into Arizona. Arrive at the Grand Canyon — a stunning natural phenomenon. Gaze out of the plane's large windows for panoramic views of the swirling colors and rock formations as you benefit from expert commentary in 1 of 16 languages. Enjoy the views on the way back to Boulder Terminal and be dropped off back to your hotel in Las Vegas, where your tour will end. You can request a commemorative flight certificate, and personalized photos are available to purchase.

From Las Vegas: Grand Canyon Skywalk Express Helicopter Tour

2. From Las Vegas: Grand Canyon Skywalk Express Helicopter Tour

Marvel at the beauty of the Grand Canyon with a bird's eye view on this helicopter tour. Enjoy VIP access to the Skywalk and immerse yourself in the breathtaking sight it offers. Depart the famed Las Vegas Strip on your direct helicopter flight to the Grand Canyon Skywalk. On your flight, you will experience a bird’s eye view of the Grand Canyon, Lake Las Vegas, Lake Mead, Hoover Dam and the Las Vegas Strip. Upon landing, get ready to witness a true engineering marvel, the Grand Canyon Skywalk. The Skywalk suspends more than 4,000 feet above the Colorado River, extends out more than 70 feet away from the edge of the West Rim, and features a glass bottom walking surface. Expedited admission to the Skywalk, VIP ground transportation and a Skywalk souvenir photo are included on this adventure. You will receive an estimated 45 minutes of ground time at Grand Canyon West before your return flight to Las Vegas.

From Las Vegas: Hoover Dam Tour Experience

3. From Las Vegas: Hoover Dam Tour Experience

Take an excursion from Las Vegas to the Hoover Dam, which has long been known as one of the engineering wonders of the world. When the Hoover Dam was completed in 1935 it was both the world's largest electric power-producing facility and the world's largest concrete structure. Currently, it ranks as the world's 34th-largest hydroelectric generating station. During the half-day tour, you’ll be able to view the 17 main turbines that generate a maximum of 2,074 megawatts of hydroelectric power. You’ll also take in views of the Dam and Lake Mead from the Arizona Lookout Point, the best viewing spot in the area. You also get an up-close look at the newly opened Hoover Dam bypass bridge, which is a modern feat of engineering, soaring 900 feet above the Colorado River. This bridge is the longest and tallest arch bridge in the western hemisphere. Later, enjoy a spectacular vista of the Mike O'Callahan-Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge, which opened in 2010 and stretches nearly 2,000 feet in length. There is a paddle-wheeler cruise on Lake Mead available as an option with this tour. Please note that this is not the Hard Hat Tour of the Hoover Dam.

From Las Vegas: Grand Canyon Helicopter Tour with Champagne

4. From Las Vegas: Grand Canyon Helicopter Tour with Champagne

Take in spectacular views over the Grand Canyon on a helicopter flight from Las Vegas. Land in the canyon to enjoy champagne and refreshments, and benefit from hotel pickup and drop-off. After pickup from selected Las Vegas hotels, head to the helipad to board the comfortable helicopter. Enjoy views of Lake Las Vegas, Lake Mead, the Hoover Dam, and Fortification Hill. Soar over an extinct volcano as you journey towards the Grand Canyon.  When you reach the canyon, drop down towards the Colorado River, where you’ll land in Hualapai Indian Reservation. Stop here to enjoy some champagne, drinks, and a light snack as you admire the canyon from a different perspective. Fly back towards Las Vegas through the Grand Canyon and see the red rock formations of the Bowl of Fire. Finish off your adventure with views over downtown Las Vegas and the Las Vegas Strip. Select the early morning flight to beat the heat of the day. With this option, you’ll enjoy a continental breakfast with champagne during the canyon landing. Choose the sunset option to fly back through the Grand Canyon as the sun goes down. Enjoy the scenery at sunset, and admire the city lights below as you soar over Las Vegas.

Willow Beach: Emerald Cave and Lake Mead Kayaking Tour

5. Willow Beach: Emerald Cave and Lake Mead Kayaking Tour

Discover a kayaker’s dream destination – the Emerald Cave and Willow Beach – on this kayaking tour from Las Vegas with a guide and unlimited snacks and drinks. Swim in the cave’s enchanting green water and keep an eye out for wildlife. After meeting your guide, start with a quick kayaking lesson before gearing up and getting on your kayak. When paddling toward Emerald Cave, take a break from kayaking and explore breathtaking views of the entire canyon. Get your cameras ready for the desert bighorn sheep, blue heron, and bald eagles. Marvel at the canyon walls lining Emerald Cave that are 5,000 to 7,000 feet high. During the tour, get the chance to swim in the mystical green water of the Colorado River. When the sun shines at the right angle, reflections off the sediment on the cave walls make the river water look bright green. The outdoor adventure Sherpa shares that the cave's green waters shine the brightest during the spring and summer months. 

Las Vegas: Grand Canyon Helicopter Tour with Champagne

6. Las Vegas: Grand Canyon Helicopter Tour with Champagne

Marvel at the Grand Canyon from above on this popular helicopter tour from Las Vegas, with transfers included. Land on the canyon floor 3,500 feet below the rim to enjoy it up-close. Treat yourself to some champagne and refreshments while overlooking the Colorado River. After your Las Vegas pickup, experience a breathtaking helicopter flight over the Hoover Dam, Lake Mead, and Fortification Hill—an extinct volcano—along with many other awe-inspiring views. After descending 3,500 feet inside the Grand Canyon and Hualapai Indian Reservation, make sure to snap some photos after landing for some unforgettable souvenirs.  Take in the breathtaking views of the canyon and river in front of you. Then, enjoy a cool beverage, light snack, and champagne toast while sitting 300 feet above the impressive Colorado River.  Continue your journey through the beautiful Black Canyon as your return to the South Las Vegas terminal, then enjoy your transfer back to Las Vegas.  Upgrade your tour to include a flight over the bright lights of the Las Vegas Strip and the city’s downtown area before heading home. This option includes the standard tour plus an additional flight over the world-famous Vegas Strip.

Valley of Fire Guided Hiking Tour from Las Vegas

7. Valley of Fire Guided Hiking Tour from Las Vegas

Experience the adventurous side of Las Vegas and spend your day hiking at the Valley of Fire State Park. Your guide will pick you up at your hotel, taking you away from the Strip and into nature! As you approach the entrance to the park you’ll have views of the Lake Mead Recreation Area in the distance. Lake Mead is the largest manmade lake in the United States. Choose from easy, moderate, or difficult hike options. During the tour your guide will share historical information about the Valley of Fire and the geology of the area. Admire petroglyph-covered walls as you trek through the desert wilderness in Nevada’s oldest State Park. As the hike continues you’ll experience mild to extreme rock scrambles that will take you to some of the most beautiful peaks and plateaus in southern Nevada. There is no shortage of excitement here, as these trails have been created with the adventurous spirit in mind. At the end of the hike you’ll stop at the park’s visitor center before returning to Las Vegas. Available Hikes: Easy (4 hours): This option is great for families and is suitable for all ages and fitness levels. An easy walk allows you to see some of the many ancient petroglyphs in the park as well as finding natural arches that are hidden throughout the park. Moderate (4-5 hours): You’ll hike at a friendly pace, although a good level of fitness is required. Explore the dramatic red rock formations while you scramble and climb landscapes of boulders, crevasses, brush, peaks, and plateaus. Difficult (5-6 hours): This is a more intense activity than the moderate and easy hikes, and is recommended for avid hikers. You’ll cover more challenging terrain for the most captivating views!

From Las Vegas: Eldorado Canyon ATV Tour & Gold Mine Visit

8. From Las Vegas: Eldorado Canyon ATV Tour & Gold Mine Visit

Experience the Wild West on this full-day ATV tour. Enjoy views of the beautiful desert landscape and sneak peeks of the Colorado River. Explore silver and gold mines from the 1800s, and recreate the Old West experience in a preserved mining town. This tour also includes a 2-seater option. Your guide will take you along old paths carved out of the mountainside that were originally used by mules pulling carts of minerals out of the mines. The scenic mountain path is surrounded by towering rock formations and cactus forests. Break for lunch with a visit to a restored mining town featuring sections of original mining camps from the 1800s. As you rest under a pavilion to enjoy your lunch, you can listen to the relaxing babble of a natural spring. The spring attracts a variety of local wildlife, and you can watch for bighorn sheep and desert foxes. After lunch, your guide will take you to the Techatticup Gold Mine. There you'll explore 3 different mineshafts to learn how men labored in search of gold. At its peak, Techatticup was Nevada’s largest producing mine, and the population of Eldorado Canyon exceeded that of modern-day Las Vegas.

Grand Canyon Helicopter Air Tour

9. Grand Canyon Helicopter Air Tour

This 70 to 75-minute air-only (non-landing) tour is a memorable helicopter experience to the Hualapai Nation on the West Rim of the Grand Canyon. The experience is enhanced by narrations in your language of choice coupled with an excellent selection of music that complements the beautiful sights; Lake Mead, the Hoover Dam, the great expanse of the Mojave Desert, and the Grand Wash Cliffs on the Hualapai Reservation. On arrival to the West Rim, you will be treated to the visual wonders of the Grand Canyon; a truly inspiring work of nature that most visitors consider breathtaking. Arrive at the terminal and receive your safety briefing before boarding one of our state-of-the-art EcoStar helicopters for your air journey to the Grand Canyon. Fly over Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam then enjoy spectacular views of the volcanic Black Mountains, Grapevine Mesa, the Mojave Desert, and then across the Grand Wash Cliffs as you enter Grand Canyon West. Fly below the rim of the Canyon for incredible views of the world-famous Skywalk and the Colorado River.

Las Vegas: Grand Canyon North Tour w/Polaris Ranger or ATV

10. Las Vegas: Grand Canyon North Tour w/Polaris Ranger or ATV

Avoid the busy national park crowds, and experience rare sights in the heart of the Grand Canyon at Bar 10 Ranch. Fly to the Arizona Strip, just miles from the Northern Rim for breathtaking views of the Grand Canyon. Head off on an ATV or Polaris Ranger along a 4x4 trail through Whitmore Canyon and Lake Mead Recreation Area to the rim of the Grand Canyon. Take in the panoramic views at 3,000 feet above the Colorado River. Admire the unusual collection of desert vegetation and animal life. Back at Bar 10 Ranch, relax and enjoy an authentic Dutch oven barbecue lunch. Then, fly to and from Bar 10 Ranch aboard an aircraft specifically designed for “flightseeing,” and soak in the views over Hoover Dam, Lake Mead, and the mighty Colorado River. Benefit from the high wings and large windows which offer the best views along with a comfortable climate-controlled cabin. After, stop in the gift shop to purchase photos or simply browse the souvenirs.

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Frequently asked questions about Lake Mead National Recreation Area National Parks

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What people are saying about Lake Mead National Recreation Area

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 252 reviews

Matt is very knowledgeable about the areas history and navigating the area. He was accommodating and ensured that the hike was appropriate for everyone while ensuring we saw unique things! The snacks and cold drinks were very welcomed.

Great experience! Great pilot, very knowledgeable. Best way to see the Grand Canyon and not spend an entire day traveling. 100% would recommend

Great experience, definitely will do it again! Jordan is also a great tour guide.

Such a great pilot, Clint was great company and a great guy

Professional from start to finish, and such amazing views