One of America’s newest attractions in the Grand Canyon is the Skywalk. The Skywalk is a horseshoe-shaped steel and glass structure 4,000 feet above the Colorado River.
The Skywalk is not in Grand Canyon National Park, but on the rim of the canyons in Grand Canyon West Park the Hualapai Indian Reservation near Eagle Point. The Grand Canyon West is about 200 kilometers east of Las Vegas. If you are coming from Las Vegas, it is worth checking out the well-known Hoover Dam and Lake Mead beforehand.
The Skywalk viewing platform was opened on March 20, 2007 after three years of construction. The Skywalk has been open to the public since March 28, 2007.
David Jin, a Las Vegas architect and entrepreneur, came up with the idea of building the Skywalk in 1996. The Hualapai tribe, the owners of the area, gave him permission to do so. The Skywalk is owned by the Hualapai tribe, but investor David Jin takes a percentage of the entrance fee.
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The platform is made of steel beams and protrudes over the rim of the Gran Canyon. The floor of the Skywalk consists of a seven centimeter thick glass floor and a glass railing. The glass for the Skywalk was made in Germany and comes from Berlin and Cologne.
The Skywalk towers 22 meters above the canyon rim, weighs 482 tons, is made of 35 million kilograms of steel and is said to be able to withstand loads of up to 35 tons. The Skywalk can withstand earthquakes up to magnitude 8 and winds up to 160 km/h. The construction of the Sykwalk cost a total of 30 million US dollars. Skywalk translates as heavenly way.
From the platform you can see the Colorado River about 1100 meters below. Directly below the platform there is a ledge after 200-300 meters.
A maximum of 120 people may be on the Skywalk at any one time.
Before you enter the Skywalk, you will have special felt covers pulled over your shoes to avoid scratching the glass floor. Bags, backpacks, mobile phones and cameras must be stowed in lockers beforehand because photography is prohibited on the Skywalk. However, the Indians offer to take photos on the Skywalk, which you can then purchase for a fee.
The Sky walk project is controversial among the Indians. A part of the Indians is of the opinion that the sacred mountain was desecrated with the Skywalk, another part thinks that the Skywalk and everything that is to be created around it is important for the next generation of Indians.
An example of this is that the income from the Skywalk was used to build the Walapai Indian Cultural Center in Peach Springs.
In 2011, the glass panels had to be replaced because some of the glass panels were already scratched by the many visits and the sand.
To reach the Skywalk you have to drive 25 kilometers long gravel road to a parking lot at the park entrance. Then we continue with a shuttle bus.
The price for the gRand Canyon Skywalk with the Glass Bridge is $30 per person. Admission to the park with the shuttle bus you have to take to the Skywalk costs $45 per person. The shuttle bus then takes you to various viewpoints, a ranch with demonstrations and the famous Skywalk.
One vantage point is Eagle Point, a huge sandstone formation in the Grand Canyon that looks like an eagle with wings spread wide.
The opening times of the Skywalk are linked to the opening times of the Grand Canyon National Park. The Grand Canyon South Rim and Grand Canyon North Rim are open daily, year-round, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. However, the Grand Canyon North Rim is closed from October through mid-May due to snowfall.
This Skywalk observation deck is three times taller than the Empire State Building in New York.
Address of the Grand Canyon Skywalk attraction
Grand Canyon West with the Grand Canyon Skywalk
Peach Springs, Arizona 86434
Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art
Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art is a museum dedicated to contemporary and modern art, architecture & design. It is located in beautiful Old Town Scottsdale, Arizona.
The museum has a total of 1,720 square meters of exhibition space, five main galleries, an outdoor sculpture garden and the new SMoCA Lounge. The museum houses an ever-growing collection and changing exhibitions on modern art, design and architecture.
Various special events and educational programs are held regularly. The various light exhibitions are particularly worth seeing.
SMoCA aims to provide a meeting place to experience contemporary art and culture. Visitors are meant to connect with the dynamic art and ideas of our time and explore many innovations and creative exhibits. Visit this beautiful Scottsdale museum and discover the diversity and beauty of contemporary and modern art.
History of the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art
SMoCA was founded in 1999 to support local, national and international artists. The now impressive, minimalist building is a complete retrofit of a previous movie theater that once stood on the site just in front of the Scottsdale Civic Center Mall and adjacent to the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts. It was designed by famous architect Will Brother. Inside are five galleries for displaying rotating exhibitions and works from the museum’s growing permanent collection.
Tours of the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art
In the gallery there is the possibility to take part in specially guided tours. The groups consist of at least 10 people. To participate, you must book the tours well in advance.
There is also the opportunity to participate in a free walking tour of the nearby sculpture garden in Civic Center Park. These tours usually take place on Sundays.
The SMoCA Lounge hosts community events for creative minds. The lounge features a film series, lecture series and other events. It is mostly open on Fridays and Saturdays.
Architecture + Art Exhibition at the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art
In the exhibition series Architecture + Art, further innovations in contemporary art, architecture and design of various architectures and designs are presented. Exhibits by architects and artists exploring the boundaries of architecture and art alternate here.
The SMoCA building
The SMOCA building, designed by architect Will Bruder, was converted from a former cinema. It has four galleries with changing exhibitions and works, as well as a multimedia gallery and the SMoCA Salon. The Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art building complements the adjacent Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts.
Upon entering the building, you enter a colorful world with many different light colors that invite you to discover and explore. As you begin, you’ll be greeted by the glowing Scrim Wall by James Carpenter Design Associates. Many different materials, colors and shapes are distributed throughout the museum building.
In the lobby there are two curved walls – one made of frosted glass, the other of dark gray steel, creating an impressive picture. The four main galleries resemble the original cinema with a notched concrete floor, exposed hinges and a slightly curved back wall. This creates elegant, simple exhibition spaces.
You can see the change in the building here: http://willbruderarchitects.com/project/smoca/
Opening hours & tickets
The Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art is closed on Mondays and public holidays. On the other days it is always open from noon to 5 or 9 p.m.
Admission is $10 for adults and $7 for students. Children up to the age of 15 have free entry. Entry is free for all visitors on Thursdays.
Address of attraction Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art
Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art
7374 E. Second St.
Scottsdale, AZ 85251