Canyonlands October 15-22

I have booked my first Tauck tour for October! Flying solo so wondering if past visitors have any advice on what to do in Sedona since I plan to arrive a day early.
Is it worth spending a Day in Las Vegas? Am inclined not to but am curious what others think.
Also when does Tauck advise you of tours to be booked?
Thanks! Sooo looking forward to traveling again.


  • The strip is an "interesting place" to see for a day. People watching is very good, also lots of excellent architecture. If you are not a gambler (we are not), it is still interesting to see the gambling halls. There are lots of high end stores, and a lot of schlock. Enjoy.

  • I did this tour about 5 years ago. I loved the Four Seasons Scottsdale! The scenery is beautiful and the resort is so relaxing. I wouldn’t go to Sedona or Las Vegas. You visit during the tour anyway. Maybe you could explore Old Town Scottsdale or visit Taliesin west. Taliesin is UNESCO world heritage site Frank Lloyd Wright’s winter home.

  • MIMI 48 - we definitely recommend visiting Las Vegas. Visited LV probably 30 times over the years (used to live in San Diego). We are not gamblers but love to go to see fantastic shows. We've seen all kinds of shows - Beatles LOVE, Cirque du Soleil, Magicians, Comedians, Concerts. We even saw Siegfried and Roy years ago and the tigers walked right in front of us. LV also has incredible restaurants, amazing hotels to visit like the Venetian and its floating gondolas both inside and outside the hotel. It has it all. Stick to the strip and avoid downtown which is a very sleezy part of the city. We've stayed at the Mandarin Oriental, the Four Seasons (which has no gambling), the Venetian and the Bellagio. When we visit we usually see 2 shows a day. Yep, LV is sooo touristy but it is a blast too. Have fun!

  • You can try "googling" Viator Sedona which should give you several links to possible tours in Sedona to see if any they list appeal to you. We used them earlier this year for a Death Valley day trip and another to see the Valley of Fire. At the time, there was an option to reserve a tour without a deposit and you were charged the day before the tour.

  • Las Vegas is over 4 hours from Scottsdale. I don’t see how you could do that only arriving a day early. Your tour ends in Las Vegas so if you stay later you would be able to see some shows.

  • Mimi, I was confused by your question…..are you talking about the actual tour? If so, The Tauck tour includes tours that you have already paid for the tour.
    The tour ends in Vegas, I would stay on a couple of extra days and get into the desert, a short drive to Red Rock Canyon, you could also visit the Hoover Dam.

  • As a local, I can tell you that late October is a usually good time to visit Las Vegas. The weather is usually quite pleasant (usually not getting colder until around Halloween). Besides the shows on the strip, shopping, and tourist watching, there are a number of sights nearby if you are willing to rent a car. Red Rock Canyon is a dramatic scenic area just west of the city. Beautiful desert scenery, hiking trails and a scenic drive. Mount Charleston is about a hour to the northwest and has alpine scenery and hiking. It will be cooler there (they even have a ski resort in the winter), so October may be a little late for that. Valley of Fire State Park is about an hour to the northeast. It has desert scenery, hiking and petroglyphs. For trekies, this was the filming location where the original Captain Kirk met his demise in Star Trek Generations. Also, Hoover Dam runs informative and entertaining tours (best dam tour around!). It's about 45 minutes to the east.

    You might also check There are many local activities built around separating the tourist from their money (other than the main one that the casinos take care of).

    Enjoy your stay. Thank you in advance for contributing to hotel and casino taxes so I don't have to pay state income tax.

  • Ah yes, Valley of Fire too, awesome

  • After reading your original question, I suggested Viator for Sedona options. But now, I'm confused. My look at the itinerary shows the tour (and welcome dinner) are in Scottsdale, not Sedona. You go to Sedona on Day 2 of the tour. It's about 2 hours north of Scottsdale which would make things a bit difficult if you're trying to do Sedona things on a "pre-tour" day.

  • We took this tour two years ago and went a day early. There is much you can do at the resort itself. There's beautiful pool and if you want to do some light hiking there is a mountain within walking distance of the hotel. The climb is gradual but should be done in the morning because of the heat with plenty of water. We were there on Memorial Day and families with small children were doing the climb. At the top you can look back towards the hotel. Here are some pictures of the mountain itself and one of the cacti we passed on the way up.

  • My husband and I are on this tour. Our first Tauck tour. Normally we travel overseas but due to the pandemic we decided to see the USA. We are going to Salt Lake City on October 11th (from NJ) and will the arrive in Scottsdale on Friday October 15th. We will also be staying one night post tour at the Four Seasons Vegas. So looking forwarding to traveling again!!!!

  • KizzoY123

    I'm sure you enjoy the tour. To get you more excited, beyond the two pictures posted by Kathy M above. Here is a recent set of photos that I took during my daily walk that shows the progression of bloom of one of the native cacti. The Catalina Mountains are in the background.

  • Thanks for posting the pictures! I am getting excited. We haven't traveled since February 2020 when we returned from New Zealand. Although we could have easily spent a pandemic year in that beautiful country (if not for our cats)!

  • Great photos. Sooo looking forward to traveling again.

  • edited August 2021

    I too will be enjoying this tour. I have been to Vegas twice and prefer seeing the shows. I see that Blue Man Group has opened again after a one year hiatus. Would I need to add an extra day at the end of the tour if I want to see one or two shows?

  • edited August 2021

    It’s a while ago since we did the tour, but definitely yes, no time to see a show when we went. Haven’t you booked your flights yet!
    On our tour, I think we stayed at crummy Caesars Palace. The Farewell dinner was very poor, everyone complained. Hole Four Seasons is better.. is it on the strip.? On our Yellowstone tour, we stayed at a Four Seasons which was about a 30 minute ride our of Jackson Hope. We stayed on and it was a pain and an expense to get into town. Tauck definitely got that location wrong.

  • Four Seasons is at the south end of the strip, adjacent to Mandalay Bay. It is much newer than Caesars.

  • If a hotel in Vegas doesn't have a casino, is it really a hotel? :)

    I haven't been to Vegas in 5+ years, but there are nice (refurbished) parts to Caesars.

  • edited August 2021

    The Four Seasons is one of the nicer hotel choices on the strip. While it doesn't have it's own casino, it is attached to Mandalay Bay, so it's maybe a 200 yard indoor walk from the Four Seasons to the Mandalay Bay casino. The Mandalay Bay complex consists of three hotels (the Delano being the other), a ton of restaurants and shops, and the best pool in Vegas (although Four Seasons customers may have to pay to use the Mandalay Bay pool). The only negatives are the distance to other strip attractions (it's the southernmost hotel on the strip) and the noise from the nearby airport (although the rooms have pretty good sound insulation).

  • Agree with Ken on everything. We've been to Vegas probably 20 times over the years and almost bought a retirement home there right before the 2008 crash in a little town nearby called Anthem. The Four Seasons is actually on the top floor or two of the Mandalay Bay. We stayed there a few years ago during our 36 day cross country drive. We enjoyed it because there is no gambling as we don't gamble and it was very relaxing at their pool because it was smaller then most. That being said, the MB probably has the best pools in Vegas and even has a sand beach. MB is also home to many conferences. Ken hit the biggest negative in that the Four Seasons and MB are a distance from the strip and if that's where you want to spend your time to see shows The Venetian or The Wynn would be better options. If not, recommend the Four Seasons.

  • We go to Vegas at least once a year. Currently our hotel of choice is Aria. It is still upscale and more centrally located than Mandalay Bay/Four Seasons or Wynn. In addition, it has its own free monorail that will take you as far north as Bellagio. So access to anything from Caesar's to NYNY (just calling out the resorts on the west side of the strip) is a snap, including the new T-Mobile arena if you're a sports fan.

  • Smiling Sam - the Aria LV looks impressive. Sadly, there's no availability on October 23rd.
    British - I'll look into extending my stay at the Four Seasons LV. Thank you for the feedback.

  • Tauck is awesome. They had an extra night available at the Four Seasons LV so I booked a front row seat for BMG. May also be able to see "O" as well. Can't wait.

  • That’s great Florida Wilderness. We saw O many years ago and loved it. Been to Vegas three times, first time when the kids were really young. Saw the white tigers etc Last time to an Elvis wedding which was awesome fun.

  • Florida Wilderness - you will definitely enjoy the LV Four Seasons. Have fun!

  • edited August 2021

    Note: Sept. 3 Forum thread addresses Lake Powell's low water levels & says likely no cruise this year, something to research before you go. As with everything right now, another ever-changing variable. Safe travels.

  • MarketArt - Yes, Our itinerary states: "Due to historically low water levels at Lake Powell, access to large watercraft has been suspended." "Therefore the planned dinner cruise on night 3 is temporarily suspended and dinner will be in the Rainbow Room." That's not a problem for me.

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