Planning the Grand Canyon Itinerary- the most famous canyon in the world

Planning the Grand Canyon Itinerary- the most famous canyon in the world

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When we talk about canyons, for most travelers, the first image that comes to mind is the Grand Canyon of the Colorado River. This is the most famous and the most visited canyon in the world, the “standard” of the canyons. Although it is not the largest one, it is still in the Top 10. And the best way to explore it is to taste everything of its nature. So, let’s build your Grand Canyon itinerary for your best experience of this spectacular phenomenon!

Basic facts about the Grand Canyon

Everything starts from a plateau, and a river (with its tributaries). The plateau is called Colorado Plateau, and the river is the Colorado River. It is considered that this land has been slowly rising for hundreds of millions of years, and the river gradually cut its valley through it, forming the spectacular phenomenon, called Grand Canyon.

Grand Canyon landscape
Grand Canyon landscape

Colorado River

The “birthplace” of the Colorado River is La Poudre Pass (3104 m), deep in the Never Summer Mountains. From its source, it gradually flows to the south-southwest, through mountain valleys, plains, a lake (Grand Lake), and small (not “Grand”) canyons, with countless curves.

The river descends from the Rocky Mountains to the large artificial Lake Powel. Naturally, this is the beginning of the Grand Canyon, but its “official” starting point is called Lee’s Ferry, where the river enters Grand Canyon National Park.

Lee’s Ferry is located at 980 m altitude. The whole Grand Canyon is actually a series of several canyon sections: Glen Canyon (from Lake Powel to Lee’s Ferry), Marble Canyon (from Lee’s Ferry to the merging point with Little Colorado River), and Granite Gorge, divided itself into Upper, Middle and Lower part.

The end of the Grand Canyon is at 390 m altitude, where the river reaches Lake Mead. After that, it leaves the Colorado Plateau and flows through its lowest section on the Lower Colorado River Valley, until finally reaches the Pacific Ocean, at Baja California, Mexico.

The canyon and its nature

But let’s focus on the Grand Canyon- the most spectacular section of the Colorado River. From Lee’s Ferry to Lake Mead, it is 446 km (277 miles) long. Its maximum depth is 1857 m (6093 feet). The canyon features well-formed rims, some of the best on Earth. The North Rim is about 300 m higher than the South Rim.

The Colorado Plateau is also divided into several parts. The highest one along the Grand Canyon is Kaibab Plateau, at the North Rim. West of it, there are the lower Kanab Plateau and Coconino Plateau. And the most spectacular part of the Grand Canyon is the Upper Granite Gorge.

Angel's Window at the North Rim
Angel’s Window at the North Rim

Local history and culture

Various indigenous peoples have inhabited the area around the Grand Canyon for more than 3500 years. Even today, we still can see some of their remains, like Ancestral Pueblan granaries, and more. The first Europeans saw the canyon in the 16th century, but only at the beginning of the 19th century, they started to explore it actively and settle in the area.

Today, many modern Native American people live around the Colorado River- Navajo, Pueblo, Yuman, Havasupai, and Hualapai. They are descendants of the ancient peoples and their cultures. The other modern Americans have settled the area too, anyway, due to its terrains, it remains sparsely populated.

Grand Canyon protected areas

Although not too many people live here constantly, the fantastic beauty of the Grand Canyon attracts millions of tourists. So, the whole area is arranged as a cluster of protected areas with different statuses.

The main of them is Grand Canyon National Park, established primarily along the Grand Canyon. It includes most of the South Rim, the whole North Rim, and Marble Canyon to Lee’s Ferry. The other large protected area is the Hualapai Indian Reservation, called also Grand Canyon West, established on the western part of the South Rim.

There are three additional protected areas, established on the plateaus and side canyons north and south of the Grand Canyon. Havasupai Falls is a reservation of the local Havasupai tribe, and on the north are Tuweep and Grand Canyon Parashant National Monument.

Tusayan Ruins, South Rim
Tusayan Ruins, South Rim

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How to explore the Grand Canyon

Shortly, this is what the Grand Canyon looks like. You can explore it in various ways. They depend mainly on your time and your style (only sightseeing, or also hiking, and other adventures).

To build your Grand Canyon itinerary better, let’s first identify the points of interest in the area, and the scenic routes worth visiting. They can be divided into four groups: at the bottom of the canyon, at the North Rim, at the South Rim, and beyond the rims.

On the bottom of the Grand Canyon

The bottom of the Grand Canyon is like an endless corridor, starting from the dam wall of Lake Powel to Lake Mead. The closest slopes from both sides often prevent you to see the rims, but the landscape is magnificent in a specific way.

This part of the canyon is almost entirely within the borders of Grand Canyon National Park or borders the other neighboring protected areas. Besides some grottoes and waterfalls, there are no other specific points of interest. In fact, there is only one “point” of interest, and it is not a point but the whole section.

Horseshoe Bend

This is an iconic place, one of the most famous natural sights in the United States. It is just one of the two bends of the Colorado River (there is one more in Marble Canyon, but Horseshoe Bend is more spectacular). Interestingly, the rest of the Grand Canyon is almost straight, without significant bends.

The famous Horseshoe Bend
The famous Horseshoe Bend

Horseshoe Bend is located in Glen Canyon- the uppermost section of the Grand Canyon, out of the national park. Here the canyon is still not too deep, but the high-bending cliffs in this place are spectacular. So again- Horseshoe Bend is physically a part of the Grand Canyon, but not in the Grand Canyon National Park.

Activities at the bottom of the Grand Canyon

There are three main activities you can do here: hiking, mule riding, and rafting. Some trails partially follow the river banks, higher above the river or lower, right beside the river- Beamer Trail, Tronto Trail, Bright Angel Trail. Other trails only descend to the bottom and end there.

There are two bridges, not far from each other that cross the river and connect the South with the North Rims. Bright Angel and South Kaibab trails descend to the river, cross it on these two bridges and ascend to the North Rim. Besides these, there is only one bridge (Historic Navajo Bridge) on the Marble Canyon- the only automobile bridge on the canyon that connects the two rims.

But if you want to follow the river at the bottom of the canyon, from end to end, the best way is by rafting. There are rafting boats that travel from Lee’s Ferry to the West Boat Ramp.

Colorado River rafting
Colorado River rafting

Side canyons

Dozens of side canyons descend to the Colorado River, and there are hiking trails at the bottom of most of them. These sub-canyons have the same structure as the main canyon. The largest ones are Little Colorado Canyon, Cataract Canyon, National Canyon, and Mohawk Canyon from the south, and Paria Canyon (with its tributary- the Buckskin Gulch slot canyon), Kanab Canyon, Tuckup Canyon, Parashant Canyon, and Surprise Canyon from the north.

In general, these side canyons just “sink” from the rims of the main canyon, so these rims are clearly exposed. They offer great panoramic views of the Grand Canyon, and there are many trails and panoramic viewpoints established on them.

South Rim

This is the most accessible and most popular part of the Grand Canyon. Here is the center and the traditional starting point for exploring the whole canyon area, with parking lots, Grand Canyon Visitor Center, lodges, cafes, a campsite, and more. From here, you can choose three directions- following the rim to the west, following the rim to the east, or descending to the bottom on Bright Angel or South Kaibab trails.

Points of interest

Only about 200 m from the Visitor Center, you can see the first point of interest. This is Mather Point– a viewpoint, where you can get the first impression of the Grand Canyon.

About a mile west of Mather Point is the Yavapai Geology Museum, with a topographic model of the Grand Canyon. I would strongly advise visiting this museum to get a better image of the canyon’s nature.

The Trail of Time (about 2,5 miles long) starts from Yavapai Geology Museum and follows the Rim Trail. It is a paved alley like the other alleys along the South Rim. However, it is designed as a museum. It follows a timeline of 2 billion years, exposing some rocks and explanations.

Not far from the end of the Trail of Time is Grand Canyon Village– a small town with more than a century of history. It is a residential area, with some historical buildings. Today, it is the main accommodation area for the tourists.

El Tovar Restaurant Lodge, Grand Canyon Village
El Tovar Restaurant Lodge, Grand Canyon Village

To the west

From there to the west is Hermit Road (a paved road). It follows the canyon rim westward. Another, paved alley follows the road in the same direction. Hermit Road is about 7 miles long, with a lot of panoramic viewpoints of the canyon. Finally, the road ends at Hermits Rest. Hermit Trail starts from there and descends to the bottom of the canyon.

To the east

Here is Desert View Drive– a road that starts from Williams town, reaches the South Rim of the canyon, turns eastward, and follows the rim. At Desert View Watchtower it leaves the rim and finally reaches Highway 89. Its rim section is 21 miles long.

Ooh Aah Point is the first worth visiting place on this route. It provides one of the best views of the Grand Canyon. Here is also the starting point of the South Kaibab trail that crosses the Colorado River and leads to the North Rim.

The next viewpoints on this route are located on your left, allowing you to observe the canyon from various angles. Among them are Shoshone Point, Duck a Rock Viewpoint, Grand View Point, Moran Point, and Navajo Point. But there is more to see here.

Ooh Aah Point, South Rim
Ooh Aah Point, South Rim
Tusayan Ruin and Museum

Tusayan is an ancient ancestral Pueblo village, about 800 years old. But to get a better understanding of the weird stone structures scattered around, there is a small museum. So, first visit it, to be well-informed about observing these stones and their purpose.

Desert View Watchtower

This is a historical landmark built in 1932 by architect Mary Colter. Its purpose was to recreate a traditional ancestral Pueblo watchtower. Its walls inside are painted with Pueblo-themed murals. You can ascend to the top of the tower and enjoy breathtaking views of the Grand Canyon, even the distant Marble Canyon.

Desert View Point, South Rim
Desert View Watchtower, South Rim

North Rim

This area includes the North side of the Grand Canyon. As mentioned above, it is higher than the South Rim and consists of the eastern and the South edge of the Kaibab Plateau, as well as the North slopes of the canyon west of Kanab Creek.

The North Rim is less visited due to its remoteness. But it is still a part of Grand Canyon National Park and can be accessed from Road 67, or by the South Kaibab and Bright Angel Trails that cross the Colorado River from the South Rim.

Here is also the North part of the Kaibab National Forest. The Kaibab Plateau is covered by lush coniferous forests and meadows, offering a different landscape than the semi-arid South. This forest ends at the rim of the canyon.

Points of interest

The main starting point of the North Rim is the end of Road 67- Grand Canyon Lodge. It is located about 13 miles south of North Entrance Station (the entrance to the North Rim). Several hiking trails through the forest start from this section of the road and lead to some points with spectacular views of the canyon.

Bright Angel Point is the first place in the north where you can see the fantastic landscape of the Grand Canyon. It is located only about 400 m from the Visitor Center.

Point Imperial is on the east. From this point, you can see the end of Marble Canyon, and the beginning of the Granite Canyon.

The southeastern tip of the Kaibab Plateau marks the big turn of the Colorado River from the South to the western direction. Here you can find Cape Royal, Valhalla Overlook, and the amazing Angel’s Window– a hole in the cliff over the canyon.

The edge of the North Rim
The edge of the North Rim

Other trails, west of Grand Canyon Lodge lead to more viewpoints. They are less visited, a bit off-the-beaten, and provide various angles for observation of the canyon from the north. So, you can look for Widforss Point, Tiyo Point, and the southwest tip of the Kaibab Plateau- Point Sublime.

There is another small plateau, adjacent to Kaibab. This is Powell Plateau. It is quite remote and its South tip is Wheeler Point– a completely off-the-beaten and difficult-to-access place. Beyond that is Kanab Creek, with Tuweep and Grand Canyon Parashant National Monument behind it.

Grand Canyon West

Let’s back to the South Rim and turn west. Beyond the boundary of the Grand Canyon National Park, another protected area starts, called Hualapai Reservation, or Grand Canyon West. It includes the South slope of the Lower Granite Gorge and the plateau behind it.

Most of this area consists of the land of the Hualapai people. Only a small portion of Grand Canyon West is developed for tourists. You enter the area and soon reach the center.

The first and most popular place here is the Grand Canyon Skywalk– a glass round bridge over the abyss of the canyon. Here you can also enjoy some ziplining, and helicopter tours.

Several short trails lead you to Guano Point, and Eagle Point– places with great views of the canyons. And if you are interested in the local culture, you can go to Hualapai Point (Hualapai Ranch), to learn more about the local Hualapai people and their life.

Grand Canyon West Skywalk
Grand Canyon West Skywalk


Tuweep (called also Toroweap) is a small area sandwiched between the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park and Grand Canyon Parashant National Monument. It is considered “one of the remotest places in the USA”, accessible only by dirt roads. Here, you are in a complete wilderness, a great place for adventures.

Except for the dirt roads, the only other sign of human presence is a primitive campsite. The area is dominated by Mount Trumbull and features some volcanic formations. The roads end at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, and narrow wild trails descend to the bottom.

Grand Canyon Parashant National Monument

This is another wild area, not developed for tourism, only for adventurers. It consists of segmented plateaus and mountains, cut by side canyons. The plateau is partly covered by forests, and today it is uninhabited.

There was a Mormon settlement here, called Oak Grove, but now it is abandoned and you can see its ruins. So, if you go there, you have to be well-prepared, because the area is large and far from assistance facilities. The South boundaries of Parashant follows the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.

Havasupai Falls

This place is the most beautiful area outside of the Grand Canyon. It is located between the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park and Grand Canyon West. The area is a reservation of Havasupai people.

The center of this area is Supai, the main settlement of the Havasupai tribe. A spectacular trail starts from here, following Havasu Creek, the bottom of the Havasu sub-canyon. The highlight here is a series of waterfalls- Little Navajo Falls, Fifty Foot Falls, Chutes Havasu Falls (the most beautiful), Mooney Falls, and Beaver Falls. Finally, the trail descends to the Colorado River.

Havasu Falls
Havasu Falls

Activities in the Grand Canyon

Now that we have already identified the points and the routes, let’s mention the ways to reach and explore them:


This is the main way to move from one area to another.

Walking and hiking

This is the best way to experience the beauty of the Grand Canyon. There are several types of trails:

  • Rim trails: trails that follow the rim or short walks from paved roads to nearby viewpoints. Some of the trails are paved alleys.
  • Descending trails: trails that descend from rim to bottom.
  • Crossing trails: these are South Kaibab and Bright Angel that descend from South Rim to the river and ascend by North Kaibab trail to the North Rim.
  • Canyon bottom trails: these are mostly short walks along the Colorado River.

Mule riding

Today, there are short mule riding tours in South Rim. And there is only one mule riding tour for 10 persons per day that travels from South to North rims, crossing the river.

Grand Canyon mule riding
Grand Canyon mule riding

Bicycle riding

This is an additional and refreshing experience, possible only on the paved roads and valleys on the rims.


There is 277 miles rafting area (from Lee’s Ferry to Pearce Ferry). It can be done by various types of boats. The shorter tours cover only a section of the canyon, and the longest tours travel on the bottom of the whole canyon.

There are a lot of rafting options, but let’s see some of them:

Helicopter flying

This is a short (usually 45 min to 1 hour), relatively expensive, but very exciting experience, allowing you to see the canyon from above and from different points of view. Here are some helicopter tours from South Rim:

And some helicopter tours from Grand Canyon West:

There are other activities, such as ziplining (in Grand Canyon West), museums exploring, and more.

Planning your Grand Canyon itinerary

There are a lot of Grand Canyon itinerary versions. You can visit the Grand Canyon just for one day and try 3-4 activities. At the same time, you can stay for several days and enjoy only one activity. Now, we suggest ideas for itineraries, from 1 to 7 days. They are focused starting from the most essential of the Grand Canyon.

One-day Grand Canyon itinerary

Let’s say you have only one day to visit Grand Canyon- arriving in the morning and leaving in the evening. Or, arriving in the afternoon, staying one night, and leaving at noon on the next day.

Obviously, this time is too limited. I would recommend one of these three options:

  • Arrive at the South Rim Center. Visit the Grand Canyon Museum, and walk to the nearby viewpoints to the east, and the west. Take a shuttle (if you come in the summer) to the Hermit’s Rest. Drive to the Desert View Tower.
  • Visit Grand Canyon West. Try the Grand Canyon Skywalk. Walk to the nearby viewpoints of the canyon and the native Hualapai Point.
  • Visit the North Rim. One-day activities would involve more driving to several points and a short walk to the nearby viewpoints. So, first, walk from Grand Canyon Lodge to Bright Angel Point. Then drive (follow the road signs or GPS) on Road 67, turn right on Cape Royal Road, and explore Point Imperial Road, and again Cape Royal Road to their ends. In this way, you can visit Point Imperial Point, Roosevelt Point, Valhalla Ruins, Angel’s Window, and Cape Royal Point. Don’t hurry, just enjoy!
Hermits Rest
Hermits Rest

Two-days Grand Canyon itinerary

Adding one more day is much better. In this way, you can combine options 1 and 3 from above, by driving through Navajo Bridge (driving from South Rim to North Rim is about 4 hours).

Or, we can add a new option- descending to the bottom of the canyon. There are two ways to do it: you choose any hiking trail to the bottom and back, or you do a Rim-to-Rim crossing, on South Kaibab and Bright Angel trails.

You can do it by hiking, or by mule riding, available only on the Rim-to-Rim route (however, descending to the bottom by mule is highly limited- there are only 10 mules available, so you have to book it in advance by calling 1-888-297-2757 or (303) 297-2757).

No matter which way you would choose, you will spend the night at the bottom of the canyon. By hiking, you can choose whatever trail you want, but for mule riding, you will stay in Phantom Ranch.

Trans-canyon shuttle

For Rim-to-Rim crossing for only two days, you have to consider your transport (if you want to start and end your itinerary at the same point). In this case, the best option is to arrive by your car at the North Rim on the previous day (not included in the itinerary), and on Day 1, 7:00 to depart by shuttle from Grand Canyon Lodge to the South Rim. You will arrive at the South Rim Bright Angel Lodge at noon, and you can start hiking.

In this case, you will arrive at Phantom Ranch on time, you will sleep there, and on Day 2 you can ascend to your car that will be waiting for you in the North Rim.

Silver Bridge over the Colorado River
Silver Bridge over the Colorado River

Three-days Grand Canyon itinerary

Now, you have enough time to complete the Rim-to-Rim trail in two directions (preferably North-South-North), with spending two nights in a campsite at the bottom of the canyon. In this case, you don’t need to use a trans-canyon shuttle. This option is easier, however, it is a bit waste of time.

So, a better option would be to complete Rim-to-Rim hike for 2 days as described above, and to leave one more day for other activities. For example, you can stop your car again in the North Rim and take a shuttle to the South Rim.

You will arrive in the South Rim at noon, and you can spend the rest of the first day visiting Yavapai Geology Museum, Tusayan Ruins, and Museum, short walks to the viewpoints, and more (in the South Rim). You would even have time to join a helicopter tour from Tusayan Airport. Then, you can do your Rim-to-Rim hike in the Day 2 and 3.

An exciting option is to join a short tour to the best points where you can watch the sunset over the Grand Canyon. The scenic views and the colors you can see are fantastic (if the weather is good). So, you can try Grand Canyon National Park: Guided Sunset Hummer Tour.

Four-days Grand Canyon itinerary

Now, I would complete the three-day itinerary described above, and I would dedicate the fourth day to the cool forests in the Kaibab Plateau. It would be a great time to relax after the heavy hiking on days 2 and 3. And I would still enjoy the Grand Canyon, combining the relaxation time with visiting some viewpoints, easily accessible by car.

Forests, meadows, and bizons in Kaibab Plateau
Forests, meadows, and bizons in Kaibab Plateau

Five-days Grand Canyon itinerary

For a five-day itinerary, I would do what is described in the four-day itinerary, but just more slowly and relaxing, adding a bit more viewpoints to see, and more walking in the forests of the Kaibab Plateau.

But another option is to complete the four-day itinerary and leave the fifth day for one of the following: a trip to Horseshoe Bend, or Grand Canyon West, with visiting Hualapai Point and Grand Canyon Skywalk. Yes, in this case, you would “waste” your 7-day Grand Canyon National Park entrance fee, but you would see other geographical features of the canyon that can’t be seen in the national park.

Six-days Grand Canyon itinerary

In this itinerary version, I would include some rafting on the Colorado River. There are 1 or 2-day rafting tours in the Lower Granite Gorge, from Diamond Creek to Pearce Ferry (for more details see here).

So, I would add 2-day rafting, or 1-day rafting and 1-day Grand Canyon West visiting. Or, 1-day Grand Canyon West plus Horseshoe Bend.

Seven-day Grand Canyon itinerary

Building a seven-day Grand Canyon itinerary would allow you to enjoy all of the above, from Horseshoe Bend to Lake Mead.

Have in mind that in winter some of the itineraries (mostly in the North Rim) are unavailable due to the winter closures of Road 67.

But, as described above, there is more. How about Havasupai Falls, Tuweep, and Grand Canyon Parashant? And how about full Grand Canyon Rafting?

Visiting Havasupai Falls requires 3 nights and 4 days. Full Grand Canyon rafting (from Lee’s Ferry to Pearce Ferry), 277 miles long, requires at least 8 days by motor boat, or up to 16-18 days by slower types of boats. And visiting the wild areas of Tuweep and Parashant requires an additional itinerary, for at least 3-4 days. So, these can be considered “Second Level” itineraries, definitely proper for more adventurous people.

In other words, you need a full month to complete basically everything, and even more, if you want to dive into more details (more trails, more viewpoints, more rocks, cliffs, peaks, valleys, etc.).

South Kaibab trail
South Kaibab trail

How to get to the Grand Canyon

Now, when I describe the Grand Canyon itineraries, I don’t include the transport to your starting point. So, first, you have to get there, and there are only three options: by car, by train, or by joining a tour.

By car

If you travel by car (as most visitors do), you have to choose your destination- South Rim or North Rim. For the South Rim, you have to drive on Road 64 which connects Williams with Cameron, passing through the Grand Canyon National Park (entrance and exit).

And for the North Rim, you have to drive on Road 89 and 89A, connecting Flagstaff with Fredonia, then turn on Road 67. This is also the route connecting the South and North rims.

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For Grand Canyon West, you have to drive on roads 25, 261, and 7. It is located 128 miles (2 h 10 min) from Las Vegas, and 241 miles (about 4 hours) from the Visitor Center in the South Rim.

For Havasupai Falls, you have to travel on Indian Rd 18 to reach Supai Village. And for the wilderness of Parashant and Tuweep, they are accessible by dirt roads from Colorado City and other settlements around the border between Utah and Arizona.

By train

There is a train, designed for tourists (with an old-style machine and cars), connecting Williams with Colorado Village. You can’t see the Grand Canyon from the train, but it is just a way to reach the South Rim. The whole train ride is 2 hours 30 min.

By joining a tour

A lot of tours guide you to the Grand Canyon and provide some of the experiences described above. They are designed as a part of a longer itinerary, or focused exclusively on the Grand Canyon. Here are some tours:

  • Las Vegas: Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, Lunch, Skywalk Option. This is an 11-hour tour with Las Vegas as a starting and ending point. You spend 4 hours in Hualapai Reservation (Grand Canyon West), visiting the Skywalk, Hualapai Ranch, Eagle Point, and Guano Point. On the way, you stop at some points of interest like Hoover Dam, Hemenway Park, and more.
  • Las Vegas: Grand Canyon West Bus Tour with Hoover Dam Stop. This is similar as the first tour, but can be a bit longer, and a bit more expensive. Anyway, you can try it as another option.
  • Williams, AZ: The Grand Canyon Railway Round Trip Experience. This is a train ride to the Grand Canyon. The difference from the “normal”, non-organized train ride is that this one is designed to bring a specific “Wild West” atmosphere, with music and more. The tour is 9 hours long, of which you spend 4 hours in the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

And let’s take a look at some longer itineraries:

  • Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, and Rocky Mountain Trails. This is a 14-day tour, focused on some of the best national parks in the Rocky Mountains: Yellowstone, Grand Teton, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon, and more, with some hiking. Its Grand Canyon part consists of a day and a half exploring the South Rim.
  • Wild Western USA. This is an 11-day tour. It follows a different route and visits other national parks: Joshua Tree, Grand Canyon, Yosemite, and a few more destinations. The Grand Canyon part includes a 2-day exploration of the South Rim. The time in the South Rim is free, and you can use one of the 2-day itinerary ideas described above.

Fees and permits

You have to pay a fee when you enter Grand Canyon National Park (South or North rims, the fee is the same), and Hualapai Indian Reservation (Grand Canyon West). These are different fees (Grand Canyon West doesn’t apply to the National Park and vice versa).

For Grand Canyon National Park: 35 USD for a vehicle; 30 USD for a motorcycle; 20 USD for a person on foot or with a bicycle. All fees are valid for 7 days. You can also use Annual Pass (70 USD).

For Grand Canyon West: the General Entrance fee: 39 USD; for the Skywalk- an additional entrance fee: from 26 USD; for the zipline- 39 USD.

Havasupai Falls: this area has a limit on the number of visitors. You must make a reservation from here ( in advance. When I say in advance, I mean one year earlier! The reservation is for 4 days and 3 nights. Price: 125 USD per person per night.

Horseshoe Bend, Tuweep, and Grand Canyon Parashant Monument are free to access.

Hualapai Tent
Hualapai Tent


Spending the night in the Grand Canyon is possible in lodges and ranches, and campsites. The lodges and ranches require additional fees, as well as some campsites. Some places like Phantom Ranch require reservation much earlier in advance (1 year in advance!) due to its strategic location on one of the most visited routes in the Grand Canyon. Other places can be booked on Booking or Agoda.

Check for accommodation in the Grand Canyon on Booking!

Check for accommodations in the Grand Canyon on Agoda!


The best season to visit the Grand Canyon is summer. All of the mentioned itineraries are possible in this season. Winter is the low season, and the activities are limited. For example, Road 67 to the North Rim can be closed when covered by snow. On the other hand, in July and August, the weather is hot and often rainy.

So, the best time to visit the Grand is the “shoulder seasons”- April or September-October. During these months, everything is open, weather is not too hot, it is sunnier, and not too crowded.

This is the Grand Canyon- one of the most famous natural destinations in the world. It is visited by millions of tourists every year and the whole area of the canyon is one of the best-developed places for tourism in our planet. Although it is too touristy, the most essential of the Grand Canyon remains the fantastic nature. So, enjoy your journey to this amazing place and to your pre-historic time travel!

Take a look at this video for more impressions from the Grand Canyon:

Check some travel books about the Grand Canyon:

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This is an essential guide to the Grand Canyon, with options to plan your itinerary, including some geography, useful tips, and more. This is an essential guide to the Grand Canyon, with options to plan your itinerary, including some geography, useful tips, and more.

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