Slot canyons are narrow canyons that are formed when water rushes along and through rocks, creating twisting canyons. Mostly formed in limestone and sandstone, these canyons are always deeper than they are wide. Oddly enough, slot canyons are usually found in areas of the world that receive very little rainfall. Below are 5 of the most beautiful slot canyons in the world!
1. Antelope Canyon, United States
Located in Northern Arizona near Page, Antelope Canyon is one of the most often visited and most often photographed slot canyons in the United States. It was formed in Navajo Sandstone rock mostly by flash flood waters during monsoon season. The canyon often floods during monsoon season, so it is best to visit at other times of the year. It’s not only one of the most beautiful slot canyons, it is truly one of the most beautiful places in the world!
2. Weano Gorge, Australia
Weano Gorge is located in the Karijini National Park in the Blue Mountains of Australia. It is one of the few slot canyons not made from limestone or sandstone, but out of banded iron rock. One of its most prominent features is the Handrail Pool, a chilly pond that formed between the canyon’s steep, narrow slopes. It’s a hike to get to the pool, but from what I have seen and heard, it’s well worth the effort!
3. Siq Canyon, Jordan
People who wish to visit the ancient city of Petra can access it through Siq, a very large slot canyon. This slot canyon was not created by rushing waters, however. Instead it was created when two tectonic plates split apart. The canyon’s walls were later smoothed by wind and rain erosion. As the walk back up through the canyon is uphill all the way, it’s advised to rent a horse or camel to make the trip a little easier.
4. Gorges du Fier, France
Located near Annecy, France, this slot canyon is so narrow in places that visitors can easily touch both sides at once. It is also one of the easiest canyons to access as a railed walkway has been built the entire length of the canyon. Since the walkway sits approximately 100 feet up the canyon’s steep slopes, people who are afraid of heights may want to avoid this one.
5. Subway Canyon, United States
Subway Canyon is yet another of the plentiful, beautiful slot canyons that can be found in the Southwestern United States. Located in Utah’s Zion National Park, this canyon features beautiful, colorful rock formations. But, just to warn you, this beauty is not easily accessible. The canyon is a 7 to 9 hour hike that entails that you rappel boulders and wade long distances through chilly water. For this reason, wetsuits are advisable. The canyon gets its name from a section of the canyon where both walls come very close together at the top, forming an almost perfect tube.