27 Best Things to Do at The Grand Canyon in 2024

Written By: The Planet D

There are so many things to do in the Grand Canyon, it can take days to see it all. It’s no wonder seeing the Grand Canyon is at the top of many people’s bucket lists, but it can be overwhelming to decide where to start. Never fear, we are here to help. We’ve rounded up the best ways to experience the Grand Canyon from the best hiking trails to the best viewpoints. So, are you ready to see this spectacular wonder? Let’s go!

Top Things to Do at The Grand Canyon

Things to do at the Grand Canyon

We didn’t expect to be this impressed when we visited Grand Canyon National Park, but wow, did it prove us wrong! The Grand Canyon is one of the world’s natural wonders and it lives up to the hype. At one mile deep, 18 miles wide, and 277 miles long, The Grand Canyon follows the Colorado River winding through the Colorado Plateau creating one of the most spectacular landscapes on earth.

If you are taking a road trip across America or simply touring around Arizona, you cannot miss visiting the Grand Canyon. To help you start planning, here are some things to do at the Grand Canyon to make the most of our visit.

About the Grand Canyon

best things to do at the grand canyon abuot

Grand Canyon National Park has an entrance fee. The cost to enter the Grand Canyon is. Grand Canyon Park fees are $35 per vehicle or $30 per motorcycle, for a seven-day pass. An annual park pass costs $70.

The Grand Canyon is about 1,904 square miles (4931 square km) or 1,218,375 acres. A cool fact about the Grand Canyon is that the entire state of Rhode Island can fit in it.

Grand Canyon National Park is one of the most visited national parks in the United States. 5.9 million people visit the Grand Canyon every year so it can be busy, especially at the South Rim and visitor center, but there are ways to get off the beaten path, do some hiking or camping and to see a different side of Grand Canyon National Park.

Considering its size, it can be very overwhelming to decide where to start exploring Grand Canyon National Park, but we are here to make things easier for you.  

Areas of the Grand Canyon

  • South Rim – This is the most accessible and popular part of Grand Canyon National Park with a visitor center and shuttle buses.
  • North Rim – This is a lesser visited portion of Grand Canyon National Park but it is the place to get off the beaten path and enjoy amazing hiking trails and camping. The North Rim is closed during the winter months.
  • West Rim – The West Rim is not part of Grand Canyon National Park and is instead run by the Hualapai Tribe. Here you can visit the Grand Canyon Skywalk

How to Get to the Grand Canyon

How to get to the Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon is 3-4 hours from Phoenix Arizona and 5 hours from Las Vegas to the South Rim. If you are flying into the Grand Canyon, you’ll be flying to the Grand Canyon National Park Airport just outside of the town of Tusayan. Tusayan is located at the Grand Canyon’s south entrance.

There are several entrances to the Grand Canyon, and the directions to each of them can vary depending on your starting point. Here are some of the most popular entrances and how to get to them:

South Rim Entrance: The South Rim is the most visited part of the Grand Canyon and is open all year round. The main entrance to the South Rim is located in the town of Tusayan, just south of the park. To get there, you can drive on US-180/US-64 from Flagstaff or take AZ-64 from Williams. Once you reach Tusayan, follow the signs to the Grand Canyon Village and the South Rim Visitor Center.

North Rim Entrance: The North Rim is less visited than the South Rim and is only open from mid-May to mid-October due to winter weather conditions. To get to the North Rim Entrance, take AZ-67 from Jacob Lake, which is located on US-89A between Fredonia and Page.

West Rim Entrance: The West Rim is located on the Hualapai Indian Reservation and is only accessible by taking a shuttle or helicopter tour from Las Vegas, which is about a 2.5-hour drive away.

East Entrance: The East Entrance is the least visited entrance to the Grand Canyon and is only accessible by driving on a dirt road from US-89, about 30 miles south of Page, Arizona.

Grand Canyon’s South Rim

South Kaibab Grand Canyon Natinoal Park

There are three main sections of the South Rim to explore, The Rim Trail, Hermit Road, and Desert View Drive. They are all easily accessible for taking scenic drives and shuttle busses are on hand to transport visitors from the Visitor Center to the trailheads.

The South Rim of the Grand Canyon is the most popular and accessible. This is most likely where you’ll begin your Grand Canyon adventure. So let’s check out all of the amazing things to do at the Grand Canyon’s south rim.

1. Grand Canyon Visitor Centre

Best Things to do at the Grand Canyon Visitors Center

One of the best places to start when you visit the Grand Canyon South Rim is at the Grand Canyon is the Visitor Center at the South entrance. It’s worth going inside to pick the park ranger’s brains, get information on the hiking trails, and learn about the national.

There are plenty of points of Interest in the Grand Canyon leading out from the visitor center. You can hop on the Rim Trail in either direction from here and see some of the best views. So, without further adieu, let’s explore the Grand Canyon’s South Rim.

2. Grand Canyon Village

things to do at the grand canyon south rim

Let’s start in Grand Canyon Village. This is an excellent place to make a base when you visit the Grand Canyon. Here, you can book Grand Canyon tours.

It is also a hub for hiking trails and shuttle buses, there are hotels and shops to purchase hiking gear, and you can visit some of the Grand Canyon’s top attractions like the Lookout Studio, and Kolb Studio, Grand Canyon Railway. There are even restaurants and coffee shops and a market to stock up on groceries if you are RVing.

Have a short time at the Grand Canyon? Book this fun Hummer Tour – Enjoy a 2-hour tour including entrance to the Grand Canyon National Park where you’ll see the best, viewpoints on the South Rim in a luxury Hummer. If you have a short time at the Grand Canyon, this is an excellent option.

3. Hermit Road Shuttle Bus

things to do at the grand canyon  Grand Canyon rim trail

From Grand Canyon Village, you can hop on the Hermit Road Shuttle Bus to Hermits Rest. Hermit Road is one of the best scenic drives on the Grand Canyon, but it is closed to traffic between March 1 and November 30. We took this bus when we visited the Grand Canyon. The round-trip route lets you hop on and hop off at some of the most scenic lookouts along the south rim.

There are 9 stops along the seven-mile drive (14.4 km) including the Canyon Rim Trail, Greenway Trail, Trailview Overlook, Powell Memorial, Mohave Point (where we took in the sunset) The Abyss, Pima Point, Hermits Rest, and Hermit Trial.

You can hop off at any stop you like, explore the trails and viewpoints and then catch the next bus. Some of the best stops include Powell Point, Pima Point, and Mojave Point. If you are not hiking the Grand Canyon, this is a good way to see a lot in one day.

4. South Kaibab Trailhead Viewpoint

things to do at the grand canyon 
South Kaibab Trail

The South Kaibab Trailhead is another great stop on the shuttle bus for exploring the Grand Canyon. It is a popular stop for people hiking the South Kaibab Trail down to the Colorado River, but there are other trails to explore here too.

Take the orange line shuttle bus to the trailhead from the Visitor Center or village and then choose from several different day hikes. You can even do multi-day trips from here. Read The 17 Best Hikes in Arizona. the hike is pretty amazing and you can even jump on a guided hike if you don’t have a lot of experience.

The orange line stops along many stops on the Rim Trail including Grand Canyon Visitor Center, Mather Point, Yavapai Point Geology Museum, South Kaibab, Yaki Point, and Pipe Creek Vista.

5. The South Kaibab Trail Hike

Best Things to do at the Grand Canyon South Kaibab Hike

If you want to do more than just a stop on the shuttle bus for grand canyon views, you can hike the South Kaibab Trail but be prepared and have supplies, this is a full-day trek.

The South Kaibab Trail is a 7.3 mile (11.7 km) one-way trip to Bright Angel Campground way down in the canyon. If you do this in one day, you’ll want to leave early as it is a steep ascent back up. It will take about 4 to 5 hours alone to get to the campground located on the Colorado River.

If you are planning on camping, be sure to book ahead of time as slots fill up quickly. The campground is located on the north side of the river and you’ll cross the scenic Kaibab Suspension Bridge.

Rim to Rim Hike

If you are looking to take the adventure up a notch, the Rim to Rim hike gores from the South Kaibab Trail to the North Kaibab Trail on the north rim. (or vice versa). The hike is challenging, covering about 24 miles (depending on the route taken) and involves a total elevation change of around 10,000 feet.

The trailhead is located Yaki Point which you can reach by shuttle bus. The Rim to Rim hike is typically done as an overnight backpacking trip, with hikers camping at either the Bright Angel Campground or the Cottonwood Campground. Hikers must obtain a backcountry permit from the park before starting the hike that you can obtain from the National Park Service website.

6. Helicopter Flight Over the Grand Canyon

Helicopter Flight over Grand Canyon

One of our favorite things to do whenever we travel is to take a helicopter ride and another unique way to experience the grand canyon is to take a helicopter flight. For an unforgettable trip to the Grand Canyon Book this helicopter tour over the south rim.

If you want to see the Grand Canyon from above book this scenic flight over the Grand Canyon to enjoy the majestic views of Grand Canyon National Park. , You’ll fly over the Zuni Corridor, Imperial Point, Confluence of Colorado and Little Colorado Rivers, Kaibab National Forest, and Kaibab Plateau.

This 45-minute trip gives you a bird’s eye view of the South Rim and Kaibab Forest. Plus you’ll take a breathtaking journey through Dragon Corridor, the widest and deepest part of the canyon. This is the tour that we recommend

7. Grand Canyon Mule Rides

Best Things to do at the Grand Canyon Mule Rides

One of the most iconic things to do in Grand Canyon National Park is to take a mule ride down into the canyon. These overnight rides take you deep into the canyon to the Phantom Ranch located at the bottom of the Grand Canyon.

This is such a popular tour that spaces are limited and to stay at the ranch, there is a lottery to book mule rides, reservations are highly recommended: Mule rides may be reserved by calling 1-303-297-2757 or toll-free within the United States at 1-888-297-2757.

8. Yaki Point and Ooh Aah Point

Things to do at the Grand Canyon Yaki and Ooh Ahh Point

If you don’t want to do the full South Kaibab Trail, there are two other popular trails here. Yaki Point is just a 1.6-mile round trip hike (2.5 km) from the trailhead or you can hike to the Ooh Aah Point which is just .8 of a mile (1.2 km) from the trailhead. The trailhead for the South Kaibab Trail is located near Yaki Point, which can be reached by shuttle bus or private vehicle.

You’ll definitely want to see both of these viewpoints before moving on. Many people say that the Ooh Aah Point is their favorite view of the grand canyon.

Ooh Aah Point

Ooh Aah Point is approximately 1.8 miles down the South Kaibab Trail from the trailhead, and it offers stunning views of the canyon walls, rock formations, and the Colorado River. The viewpoint is named for the feeling of awe and amazement that many visitors experience when they first see the panoramic views of the canyon from this location. This point certainly lives up to its name.

To reach Ooh Aah Point, you’ll need to hike down the South Kaibab Trail, which is a steep trail that descends approximately 1,100 feet in elevation over the course of the 1.8-mile hike to the viewpoint. The trail is well-maintained and offers stunning views at every turn, but it’s important to bring plenty of water, wear appropriate hiking shoes, and be prepared.

9. South Rim Trail

grand canyon national park south rim viewpoints

One of the most popular hiking trails in the Grand Canyon is the South Rim Trail. This paved walking path goes along the south rim from the South Kaibab Trailhead to Hermit’s Rest for 13 miles (20 km).

The hike takes approximately 5-6 hours and goes through the visitor center, the village, Powell Point or Mojave Point, Monument Creek Vista, and finally Hermit’s Rest. You can hop on this travel at several points so you don’t have to do the entire walk.

10. Mather Point

Mather Point Grand Canyon National Park

If you aren’t planning to do many hikes, Mather Point is a popular stop from the Visitor Center. It is just a short walk but it packs a huge punch, you’ll see some amazing views.

This is the most popular viewpoint in the Grand Canyon as it is just a short walk along the trail before you come out to vistas of the canyon. But expect to share this view with a lot of crowds. Mather Point is just a five-minute walk from the Visitor’s Center and you can also stop here when hiking along the Rim Trail.

11. Yavapai Point

Things to do in the Grand Canyon Yavapai Point

Yavapai Point is another prime viewpoint on the Grand Canyon’s south rim. You can hike to it from Mather Point which is just a 1.5-mile round-trip hike (2.5km).

It gives the best view of Bright Angel Canyon on the North Rim and it is here that you can visit the Yavapai Museum of Geology. This is one of the best places in the Grand Canyon for sunset.

12. Bright Angel Trail to Indian Garden

trail Bright Angel Trail things to do at the Grand Canyon National Park

For a more challenging hike in Grand Canyon National Park, the Bright Angel Trail is a popular day hike to Indian Garden. The trail starts at Grand Canyon Village and goes to the Colorado River. The Bright Angel Trailhead can be accessed at Bright Angel Lodge. It is a steep descent, and what goes down must go up, so be prepared for the ascent and give yourself plenty of time. You can also hop on a guided hike of the area if you want to hike with other people.

Indian Garden is a good turnaround point if you are doing a day hike, but you can continue on to other trails from the Bright Angel Trail. If you feel that you have time, you can continue on to Plateau Point, but be warned it is a 14-mile round trip (22 km) hike, and going up is much tougher than going down. Full-day hikes are not recommended for long hikes. I know we couldn’t finish this in a day.

13. Yavapai Geology Museum

Best Things to do at the Grand Canyon Yavapai Geology Museum

The Yavapai Geology Museum is just 2 miles (3.2 km) from Grand Canyon Village. The National Park Service offers daily programs but the most interesting thing to do here is to walk the Trail of Time. The Trail of Time is a loop from the Yavapai Geology Museum.

Take this trail back to town as you walk along the path you’ll learn of the Grand Canyon’s Geological history through a geology timeline where you’ll work your way back in time 1 million years. This interactive timeline has signage and maps, rocks, and viewpoints with every 1 meter representing 1 million years.

Where to Stay in Grand Canyon Village

things to do at the grand canyon national park where to stay village

Staying in the village is pricey and the hotels have been around for decades. So expect to pay a lot without the luxuries of your usual stays. But remember, this is a national park and you cannot beat the location. If you work a couple of nights here into your budget, you can really explore all of the best things to do on the south rim of the Grand Canyon.

  • El Tovar Hotel – This historic hotel opened in 1905. It’s an expensive hotel and you are paying for the history and location. Prices at the Grand Canyon are expensive because of the location and this is as pricey as it gets.
  • Yavapai Lodge – This lodge is a more affordable option but it is about a mile from (1.6 km) the South Rim

Other hotels in the village include Thunderbird Lodge, Bright Angel Lodge, Kachina Lodge and Maswick Lodge.

14. Bright Angel Campground

Best Things to do at the Grand Canyon Bright Angel Campground

If you want to take on a multi-day hike you will continue along the Bright Angel trail to the Bright Angel Campground north of the Colorado River. To get to the campground you cross the Colorado River via the Bright Angel suspension bridge. The early planners of the Grand Canyon thought of it all!

This trail is also used by mules so be sure to give them the right of way. Mules ride at both the South Rim and North Rim. And when the mules are passing make sure you stay on the cliff side and give plenty of room.

When on a mule ride you’ll head to Phantom Ranch which is a historic ranch located at the bottom of the Grand Canyon and offers cabins and dorm rooms. Book well in advance as there is a lottery system in place for reservations. Details of Phantom Ranch here.

15. Desert View Drive

Desert View Drive near Grand Canyon

Desert View Drive is a scenic drive that runs along the South Rim of the park from the East Entrance to the Grand Canyon Village. You can also get to it from Tusayan. Desert View Drive is a 23-mile (37 km) scenic road between Grand Canyon Village and Desert View and unlike Hermit Road, it is open to all vehicles so you can drive yourself. There are several stops along the way so you can take a half day or so to explore.

Head north from the South Entrance along Highway 64 and then turn right away from Grand Canyon Village onto Desert View Drive for the best Grand Canyon sunset locations.

There are several viewpoints and pullouts including Duck on a Rock, Grandview Point, and Moran Point. As you continue east past the Tusayan Museum you’ll come to the Desert View Watchtower. We suggest if you are doing a road trip through the area this Guided Audio Tour that is on your phone is a great addition so you don’t miss the most important highlights of the area.

Grand Canyon East Entrance

The East Entrance of the Grand Canyon is the least visited entrance, but it provides access to some of the most remote and spectacular areas of the park. Here are some of the things you can do from the East Entrance of the Grand Canyon.

16. Tusayan Museum

Best Things to do at the Grand Canyon tusayan museum

Indigenous culture is very important to Dave and me. When visiting national parks in Canada or the United States, chances are it is on ancestral land. And the Tusayan Ruins and Museum is located just outside the park at Ancestral Puebloan ruins.

They offer a glimpse into the lives of the ancient Puebloan people who lived in the area over 800 years ago.

There are artifacts dating back 2000-4000 years. This is a sacred land and while visiting the museum, you can hike the Tusayan Ruin Trail to a kiva used by Ancestral Puebloans.

17. Desert View Watchtower

Best Things to do at the Grand Canyon Desert View Watchtower

The Desert View Watchtower is a 70-foot-tall stone tower located on the South Rim near the East Entrance. It was built in the 1930s and offers panoramic views of the canyon and the surrounding landscape.

Hike the Tanner Trail: The Tanner Trail is a challenging 9.6-mile round-trip hike with an elevation change of over 5,000 feet, and it offers stunning views of the canyon and the river.

18. Little Colorado River Overlook

Little Colorado Overlook Grand Canyon

One of the unique things to do near the Grand Canyon is to stop at the Little Colorado River Overlook. Located near the East Entrance of Grand Canyon National Park, it is not actually in the park. But it is a good stop when driving between the north rim and south rim of the Grand Canyon. It’s a great place to go for a hike.

This is a gorge carved by the Little Colorado River, a tributary of the Colorado River. If this is little, Mother Nature has a cute sense of humor.

North Rim

We have made it to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. The North Rim of the Grand Canyon offers a more secluded and less crowded experience than the more popular South Rim. There are still north rim services, but they are limited in the winter.

When visiting the North Rim, you will still find visitor centers with exhibits and park rangers and you can still do guided hikes and take part in ranger programs. Check the park schedule for upcoming programs.

19. North Kaibab Trail to the North Rim

North rim of the Grand Canyon view of Grand Canyon National Park

If you want to hike to the north rim from the South Rim, Bright Angel Trail, it meets up with the North Kaibab Trail where you can hike all the way to the North Rim.

We have heard that avid hikers compare the Grand Canyon’s rim-to-rim hike to climbing Mt. Whitney. Regarding Transportation, don’t worry, there are shuttle buses at the Grand Canyon between both the South Rim and North Rim.

The Phantom Ranch is also down here on the Colorado River and you may choose to stay here instead of the Bright Angel Campground. This is the classic rim-to-rim hike and if you want bragging rights when visiting the Grand Canyon, this is it!

There are many options for getting around the Grand Canyon with Shuttle Busses, taxis, guided tours, bicycle rentals, and car rentals. Details for shuttles here.

20. Scenic Drives

Best things to do at the Grand Canyon Scenic Drives

The north rim has some beautiful scenic byways. Cape Royal Road or Point Imperial Drive offers beautiful views of the Canyon.

The Cape Royal Road is a 23-mile scenic drive that runs along the North Rim and offers some of the most spectacular views of the canyon. The road ends at Cape Royal, which is a popular viewpoint that offers panoramic views of the canyon.

Point Imperial Drive is a 12-mile scenic drive that runs from the North Rim Entrance Station to Point Imperial, which is the highest point on the North Rim. The drive offers stunning views of the canyon and the surrounding forest.

There are other scenic dives including The North Rim Parkway, Jacob Lake to North Rim, and the Vermilion Cliffs Scenic Drive

21. North Rim Campground

If you want to do some camping, the North Rim has several campgrounds, including the North Rim Campground. North Rim Campground is also open for winter camping with a permit.

While enjoying the more remote destination, look up to the stars. Stargazing: The North Rim is one of the best places in the country for stargazing, with little light pollution and clear skies. Take a blanket and some snacks and enjoy the night sky.

22. Whitewater Rafting

Whitewater Rafting the Colorado River near Grand Canyon

It’s a dream to raft the Colorado River and if you have the time there are several tours that offer rafting in the Grand Canyon. Many start at the upper canyon and end at the Phantom Ranch. So be warned, you will have to hike out of the Grand Canyon for nearly 10 miles (16 km) up along the Bright Angel Trail to the South Rim.

Tours range from a day trip to multiday trips lasting up to 5 to 8 days. Depending on how long you want to be on the water, there’s something for everyone.

If you want to plan a Whitewater Rafting trip in advance, check out this Full Day Whitewater Rafting tour. It is a self-drive tour to the start. Take a road trip to Peach Springs, Arizona to Hualapai Lodge. Where you’ll meet your guide and take a 40-mile (64 km) journey through the canyon.

If you are staying in Vegas which is just over 2 hours from the Grand Canyon and want to experience Grand Canyon national park in all its glory, this full day whitewater rafting tour takes you on a whitewater adventure along the Colorado River. This Grand Canyon Tour is led by a Native American Hualapai Guide along class 3 and 5 rapids.

Grand Canyon West Rim

The West Rim of the Grand Canyon is a section of the canyon that is located on the Hualapai People. It is managed separately from Grand Canyon National Park. It is often referred to as the Grand Canyon West. This is the portion of the Grand Canyon that most people visit from Las Vegas. There is a separate entrance fee for entering Grand Canyon West. So our national parks pass will not work here. You can grab your entry tickets beforehand here to save some time.

23. Grand Canyon SkyWalk

Grand Canyon West Grand Canyon Skywalk

If you are heading to the West Rim, or driving from Las Vegas, chances are you’ll be stopping at the West Rim. The Grand Canyon Skywalk is just 2 hours from Las Vegas making it a popular day trip. Grand Canyon West is not part of Grand Canyon National Park but there are still plenty of things to see and do.

This horseshoe-shaped glass bridge is a fun way to get those incredible vistas of the Grand Canyon from the West Canyon Rim. It is 10 feet wide and reaches 70 feet over a 4000-foot drop. I don’t care if people aren’t fans, I love these types of glass floor adventures that take your breath away.

24. Helicopter Tours

Best things to do at the Grand Canyon Helicopter Tours

Taking a Helicopter Flight is one of the most popular things to do in Grand Canyon West. If you are in Vegas – Book this helicopter tour from Las Vegas. On this flight, you will fly 3,500 feet below the rim of the Grand Canyon and land near the Colorado River in Hualapai Territory where you’ll enjoy champagne as you overlook the Colorado River and the majestic Grand Canyon.

Take this Grand Canyon Tour from Vegas – Explore the West Rim on this day trip from Vegas where you’ll enjoy views of Eagle Point, Guano Point, and Hualapai Ranch. Plus the option to experience the world-famous Skywalk, experience rim views, and rim walk.

25. Go Zip Lining

The zipline consists of two parallel lines that are each 1,100 feet long and stretch across a side canyon of the Grand Canyon. Riders are secured in a harness and attached to the zipline, and then they launch from a tower and soar across the canyon at speeds of up to 45 miles per hour.

26. Guano Point

Best Things to do at the Grand Canyon Guano Point

Guano Point is a scenic overlook that offers stunning views of the canyon and the surrounding landscape. Visitors can hike to the top of the point for even more panoramic views. The overlook is named after the guano deposits that were mined in the area in the early 20th century.

One of the unique features of Guano Point is the old mining equipment that is scattered throughout the area. Visitors can explore the old mining buildings and equipment, which provide a glimpse into the history of the area.

At the top of Guano Point, visitors will find several viewing areas that provide 360-degree views of the canyon and the surrounding area. There is also a restaurant and gift shop at the point, where visitors can grab a bite to eat or pick up souvenirs.

27. Grand Canyon Railway

Grand Canyon Railway

If you are looking for a unique way to experience the Grand Canyon, the Grand Canyon Railway leaves from Williams, Arizona, and offers a different perspective to see the Grand Canyon. In true American fashion, there are performers and cowboys reenacting life in the wild west complete with a great train robbery.

Towns Near the Grand Canyon

You don’t need to stay in the Grand Canyon to enjoy it. There are plenty of towns near Grand Canyon National Park that have full amenities and attractions in their own right.

Williams Arizona

Williams Arizona

Williams Arizona is an awesome stop on Route 66 that truly feels frozen in time. The train leaves from here. The Grand Canyon Railway has been taking passengers to the Grand Canyon since 1902 and you’ll get to explore just as the early explorers of the Grand Canyon did. The train lets you off at the Grand Canyon depot where you can enjoy the Grand Canyon’s south rim.

Many people combine a stay at the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel in Williams. Williams is a great place to stay near the Grand Canyon.

Grand Canyon Tusayan

Tusayan Grand Canyon South Entrance

Tusayan is located at the south entrance of the Grand Canyon and is another good place to make a base when visiting Grand Canyon. There are plenty of hotels and restaurants, you can book Grand Canyon Tours here and you can visit the National Geographic Visitor Center where you can watch an IMAX Movie. This is a fun thing to do when you need a break with the whole family.

What You Need to Know About the Grand Canyon

Facts about the Grand Canyon

Much of the Grand Canyon is within a national park and has an entrance fee. The cost to enter the Grand Canyon is $35 per vehicle or $30 per motorcycle, for a seven-day pass. An annual park pass costs $70.

The Grand Canyon is a national park located in the state of Arizona. It was designated a National Park in 1919. It is a whopping one mile deep, 277 miles long, and 18 miles wide. (1600 meters, 445 km, 29 km)

The Grand Canyon can be enjoyed from the North Rim, West Rim, and Grand Canyon East but the South Rim is the most visited and has the most attractions, accommodations, and viewpoints. Make sure to read our in-depth post Facts About The Grand Canyon, for more information.

Getting Around the Grand Canyon

Getting Around the Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon Shuttle Bus

If hiking isn’t your thing don’t worry, the Grand Canyon Shuttle bus offers free shuttles along the south rim. There are different shuttle buses: The Orange Route (Kaibab Rim Eastbound) shuttle begins at Grand Canyon Visitor Center with service to the South Kaibab Trailhead, Yaki Point, and Pipe Creek Overlook. There is also a Hiker’s Express shuttle that will take you out early in the morning. You can take the bus to different stops and pick is up every 15 minutes.

When to go to the Grand Canyon

When to go to the Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon is a year-round destination with summer (obviously) being the peak season. This is when prices are highest, but it is also crowded and hot. Like many travel destinations around the world, shoulder season is the best time to visit for better rates, fewer crowds, and less traffic.

Plan for Spring and Fall as the weather is still quite pleasant. It’s actually great for hiking in the fall with dry conditions and cooler temperatures.

The North Rim of the Grand Canyon is only seasonal. It is closed in the winter and open in the spring from mid-May to mid-October.

Where to Stay in Grand Canyon National Park

things to do at the grand canyon national park where to stay

We have an entire article dedicated to Where to Stay at the Grand Canyon at the Best Grand Canyon accommodations. This comprehensive guide will help you decide which accommodation works for you.

Trailer Village RV Park: For RVers The Trailer Village RV Park takes vehicles up to 50 feet long. It’s located within the park and the good news is the bus line stops right in front of it. Read our How to Live In An RV on $2000 Per Month

There are several campgrounds in Grand Canyon National Park that make for a more affordable option. Hikers will want to look into Bright Angel Campground and Indian Garden Campground. Camping at the village includes Mather Campground. See our Ultimate Camping Gear List

Where to Stay Near the Grand Canyon

things to do in the grand canyon

When staying at the Grand Canyon the best place to stay is at the Grand Canyon Village which we mentioned above. But it is pricey and you don’t get what you pay for accommodation-wise, but it is within walking distance to the south rim and all of the Grand Canyon viewpoints and attractions. However, to save money we suggest staying out of the Grand Canyon Village (unless you decide to splurge for a night or two). these are a few suggestions but we recommend checking out our full detailed article on Where to Stay At The Grand Canyon for a more in-depth breakdown.

South Entrance

The South Entrance of the Grand Canyon is just 13 minutes from Grand Canyon Village. There are plenty of restaurants, and a visitor center and it is close to the airport.

Williams Arizona

Grand Canyon Railway Hotel was designed to resemble the century-old train depot and is a fun place for families to hop aboard the Grand Canyon Railway. You can have your luggage forwarded to the Grand Canyon so you can take the railway one-way to the South Rim of the Canyon.

If you are looking for a cabin away from it all, check out Elk Meadow Cottage located 1 hour from the Grand Canyon. It borders the Kaibab National Forest and is 20 minutes from Flagstaff. Sleeps 8.

Why Should You Visit the Grand Canyon?

Why should you visit the Grand Canyon

And these are some of the best things to do at the Grand Canyon and Grand Canyon National Park. This is definitely one of those bucket list destinations so be sure to add it to your road trip in America or simply create an itinerary around an entire stay at Grand Canyon National Park.

Travel Planning Resources

Looking to book your next trip? Why not use these resources that are tried and tested by yours truly.

Book Your Flights: Start planning your trip by finding the best flight deals on Skyscanner. We have used them for years and have found that they have the best flight deals.

Book your Hotel: Find the best prices on hotels with these two providers. If you are located in Europe use Booking.com and if you are anywhere else use TripAdvisor.

Find Apartment Rentals: You will find the cheapest prices on apartment rentals with VRBO

Travel Insurance: Don't leave home without it. Here is what we recommend:

  • Safety Wing - Occasional Travelers.
  • Medjet - Global air medical transport and travel security.

Book Your Activities: Looking for walking tours, skip-the-line tickets, private guides, and more? Then we recommend Get Your Guide.

Need more help planning your trip? Make sure to check out our Resources Page where we highlight all the great companies that we trust when we are traveling.

About The Planet D

Dave Bouskill and Debra Corbeil are the owners and founders of The Planet D. After traveling to 115 countries, on all 7 continents over the past 13 years they have become one of the foremost experts in travel. Being recognized as top travel bloggers and influencers by the likes of Forbes Magazine, the Society of American Travel Writers and USA Today has allowed them to become leaders in their field.

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