3-Day Family Adventure and Sightseeing at Grand Canyon, Arizona

Grand Canyon, Arizona

3 days

Horseshoe Bend
Clouds over the rocky slopes
Bald eagle flying over the canyon
Visitor gazing at the view from the edge of a cliff
Tourists watching the sunset from a viewpoint

About Grand Canyon, Arizona

Experience the breathtaking beauty of Grand Canyon, Arizona, one of the world's natural wonders. This awe-inspiring destination offers a plethora of activities for all ages and interests. Hike the rugged trails, raft the Colorado River, or simply marvel at the panoramic views from the canyon's edge. Explore the rich history and culture of the Native American tribes that have called this area home for centuries. Take a scenic helicopter tour for a bird's eye view of the canyon's majestic landscapes. Whether you're seeking adventure, relaxation, or a bit of both, Grand Canyon, Arizona promises an unforgettable travel experience. Let us help you plan your perfect Grand Canyon getaway.

3-Day Itinerary

Day 1

Exploring the South Rim

Morning

Start your day with a guided tour of the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. This area offers the most comprehensive views of the canyon. The tour will take you to several viewpoints, each offering a unique perspective of the canyon's vastness and beauty.

Lunch

Enjoy a picnic lunch at one of the many designated picnic areas along the South Rim. These areas offer stunning views of the canyon, making for a memorable dining experience.

Afternoon

After lunch, embark on a Mule ride down into the canyon. This unique experience allows you to see the canyon from a different perspective and offers a thrilling adventure for the whole family.

Dinner

Have dinner at a restaurant with views of the canyon. Enjoy a variety of dishes while watching the sun set over the canyon, painting the sky with vibrant colors.

Evening

End your day with a peaceful walk along the Rim Trail. This trail offers breathtaking views of the canyon under the starlit sky.

Morning

Start your second day with a visit to the Grand Canyon Skywalk. This glass bridge extends out over the canyon, providing a thrilling and unique view of the canyon below.

Lunch

Have lunch at a restaurant located near the Skywalk. Enjoy a variety of dishes while taking in the panoramic views of the canyon.

Afternoon

After lunch, take a Helicopter Tour of the canyon. This tour offers an aerial view of the canyon, providing a unique perspective of its vastness and beauty.

Dinner

Enjoy dinner at a restaurant with views of the canyon. As the sun sets, the canyon walls are illuminated with a warm, golden glow, creating a magical dining atmosphere.

Evening

End your day with a stargazing session. The Grand Canyon is known for its clear, dark skies, making it an ideal location for stargazing.

Morning

On your final day, visit the North Rim. This area is less crowded than the South Rim and offers a more tranquil experience. Take a guided tour to learn about the canyon's geology and history.

Lunch

Have lunch at a restaurant with views of the canyon. Enjoy a variety of dishes while taking in the stunning scenery.

Afternoon

After lunch, take a leisurely hike along the North Kaibab Trail. This trail offers stunning views of the canyon and its diverse flora and fauna.

Dinner

Enjoy your final dinner at a restaurant with views of the canyon. As the sun sets, reflect on the unforgettable experiences you've had during your trip.

Evening

End your trip with a peaceful walk along the Rim Trail. As you walk, take in the breathtaking views of the canyon under the starlit sky one last time.

Attractions in Itinerary (6)

South Rim

1
South Rim

The South Rim is the most visited part of the Grand Canyon, offering breathtaking views and a variety of hiking trails.

Attractions
Landmarks
Parks
Mule ride

2
Mule ride

A unique way to explore the Grand Canyon, offering a different perspective than hiking or driving.

Tours
Cultural Experiences
Grand Canyon Skywalk

3
Grand Canyon Skywalk

A glass bridge that extends 70 feet over the rim of the Grand Canyon, providing a view 4,000 feet down to the Colorado River.

Attractions
Landmarks
Tours
Helicopter Tour

4
Helicopter Tour

Experience the Grand Canyon from a unique aerial perspective with a helicopter tour. This tour offers breathtaking views of the canyon's most iconic landmarks, including the Colorado River and the North Rim. It's an unforgettable adventure that provides a comprehensive overview of the Grand Canyon's vast expanse.

Attractions
Tours
North Rim

5
North Rim

The less visited part of the Grand Canyon, offering a more secluded experience.

Attractions
Landmarks
North Kaibab Trail

6
North Kaibab Trail

The North Kaibab Trail is the least visited but most difficult of the three maintained trails at Grand Canyon National Park. It offers a unique view of the canyon, and is a must-see for any hiking enthusiast.

Attractions
Parks
Tours

Local Food and Drinks (12)

Navajo Taco

A popular dish in Arizona, Navajo Taco is made with Indian fry bread topped with beans, meat, cheese, and other toppings. It's a must-try for its unique blend of flavors and its connection to the local Navajo culture.

Chimichanga

Chimichanga

A deep-fried burrito that is a common dish in Arizona. It's typically filled with rice, cheese, and meat, and served with salsa, guacamole, and sour cream. This dish reflects the strong Mexican influence in Arizona's cuisine.

Sonoran Hot Dog

Sonoran Hot Dog

A unique style of hot dog that originated in the Sonora region of Mexico and is now popular in Arizona. It's wrapped in bacon and grilled, then topped with beans, onions, tomatoes, mayonnaise, mustard, and jalapeno salsa.

Prickly Pear Margarita

Prickly Pear Margarita

A refreshing cocktail made with the juice of the prickly pear cactus, which grows abundantly in the Grand Canyon area. This drink is a unique taste of the local flora.

Sopaipilla

Sopaipilla

A type of fried pastry that is a common dessert in Southwestern cuisine. It's often served with honey or powdered sugar. This sweet treat is a testament to the region's Spanish colonial influence.

Chiles Rellenos

Chiles Rellenos

A dish made of large chili peppers stuffed with cheese or meat, battered and fried, and often served with salsa or a spicy tomato sauce. This is another example of the Mexican culinary influence in Arizona.

Mesquite Grilled Steak

Mesquite Grilled Steak

Steaks grilled over mesquite wood, which is native to the Southwest, have a distinct, smoky flavor that is a must-try for meat lovers visiting the Grand Canyon.

Posole

Posole

A traditional Mexican soup made with hominy (dried corn kernels), meat, and garnished with shredded lettuce, chili peppers, radish, onion, lime, and oregano. It's a hearty and comforting dish, perfect after a day of exploring the Grand Canyon.

Churro

Churro

A sweet fried-dough pastry, often dusted with sugar and served with chocolate dipping sauce. Churros are a popular dessert in Arizona, reflecting the state's Mexican culinary heritage.

Tequila Sunrise

Tequila Sunrise

A cocktail made of tequila, orange juice, and grenadine syrup, which gives it a colorful sunrise effect. The drink was reportedly first served in Arizona, making it a must-try local specialty.

Blue Corn Pancakes

Blue Corn Pancakes

Pancakes made with blue cornmeal, a staple in Southwestern Native American cuisine. They have a sweet, nutty flavor and are often served with maple syrup or honey.

Agave Wine

A wine made from the fermented juice of the agave plant, which is native to the Southwestern United States. It's a unique local drink that offers a taste of the Arizona desert.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit the Grand Canyon, Arizona, is during the spring (March through May) and fall (September through November) when the weather is most pleasant and the park is less crowded. During these periods, daytime temperatures are comfortable, and the lower visitor numbers make for a more peaceful exploration of the park. However, if you're interested in white-water rafting, the summer months are the best time. Please note that winter visits can also be beautiful, but snowfall can affect access to parts of the park.

National holidays

Here you can find the national calendar of all public holidays for the year. These dates are subject to change as official changes are announced, so check back regularly for updates.

DateDayHoliday Name

January 1

Mon

New Year's Day

January 15

Mon

Martin Luther King Jr. Day

February 19

Mon

Presidents' Day

May 27

Mon

Memorial Day

June 19

Wed

Juneteenth

July 4

Thu

Independence Day

September 2

Mon

Labor Day

October 14

Mon

Columbus Day

November 11

Mon

Veterans Day

November 28

Thu

Thanksgiving Day

December 25

Wed

Christmas Day

Please note that during national and public holidays, opening hours for establishments, museums, etc. may vary. Don't forget to check in advance!

How to get around

The Grand Canyon is accessible by car via the South Rim and North Rim entrances. The South Rim entrance is open all year round, while the North Rim entrance is only open from mid-May to mid-October due to weather conditions. There are parking lots available at both entrances.

The National Park Service provides free shuttle bus service within the Grand Canyon National Park. There are four different routes that take visitors to various viewpoints, trailheads, and facilities. The shuttle buses are wheelchair accessible and run at regular intervals throughout the day.

The Grand Canyon Railway operates a daily train service from Williams, Arizona to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. The journey takes approximately 2 hours and 15 minutes each way. The train offers a unique and scenic way to travel to the Grand Canyon.

Bicycles are a popular way to get around the Grand Canyon. There are bike rental services available at the South Rim. The park has a number of bike-friendly trails and roads, including the 13-mile Hermit Road Greenway Trail.

Hiking is a great way to explore the Grand Canyon at your own pace. There are numerous trails that range in difficulty from easy to strenuous. Some of the most popular trails include the Bright Angel Trail, the South Kaibab Trail, and the Rim Trail.

Ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft are available in the Grand Canyon area. However, availability can be limited due to the remote location. Ridesharing can be a convenient option for getting to and from the Grand Canyon from nearby cities like Flagstaff or Phoenix.

Mule rides are a traditional and unique way to explore the Grand Canyon. There are several guided mule ride tours available that take visitors into the canyon or along the rim. Mule rides must be booked in advance and have weight and age restrictions.

Helicopter tours offer a unique and breathtaking perspective of the Grand Canyon. There are several companies that offer helicopter tours, with various routes and durations available. Some tours even include a landing in the canyon.

Rafting is a popular way to explore the Colorado River, which runs through the Grand Canyon. There are a variety of rafting trips available, ranging from half-day trips to multi-day expeditions. Rafting trips often include opportunities for hiking and camping.

While we strive for accuracy in our "How to get around" section, the information may not always be up-to-date or 100% accurate; we highly recommend cross-checking with local resources before your travel.

Important information

Currency$ USD

Time zoneUTC-5

Driving sideRight

Emergency phone911

Drinking waterYes

Power sockets

Power socket type APower socket type B

Voltage120 V

Things to know about Grand Canyon, Arizona as a first time visitor

1

The Grand Canyon is located in the state of Arizona, in the southwestern region of the United States.

2

The Grand Canyon National Park is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

3

The weather can be extremely variable, with summer temperatures on the rim ranging from 70°F to 85°F (21°C to 29°C) and inner canyon temperatures reaching up to 120°F (49°C).

4

Winter weather can be harsh, with heavy snowfall and temperatures often dropping below freezing on the rim.

5

It is important to stay hydrated, especially during the summer months. Carry plenty of water with you at all times.

6

Wear appropriate clothing. Layered clothing is recommended due to the fluctuating temperatures.

7

Wear sturdy, comfortable shoes, especially if you plan on hiking.

8

The park offers a free shuttle bus service that can take you to various viewpoints and trailheads.

9

There are several visitor centers throughout the park, including the South Rim Visitor Center and the North Rim Visitor Center.

10

There are several lodging options available within the park, including hotels, lodges, and campgrounds.

11

There are also several dining options within the park, ranging from casual cafeterias to fine dining restaurants.

12

Pets are allowed in the park, but they must be kept on a leash at all times and are not allowed on most trails.

13

There are several hiking trails throughout the park, ranging from easy walks to strenuous hikes.

14

The park offers a variety of ranger-led programs, including guided hikes and talks.

15

Wildlife is abundant in the park, including elk, mule deer, and a variety of bird species.

16

The park is home to several Native American tribes, and there are several cultural and historical sites within the park.

17

There are several rules and regulations in place to protect the park's natural and cultural resources. Be sure to familiarize yourself with these before your visit.

18

Cell phone service is limited within the park, especially in remote areas.

19

The park has several gift shops where you can purchase souvenirs, books, and other items.

20

Remember to leave no trace. Pack out all trash and respect the park's natural and cultural resources.

Packing List

  • Clothing

  • Hiking boots

  • Lightweight clothing

  • Warm clothing for cool nights

  • Rain jacket

  • Swimsuit (for hotel pool)

  • Underwear and socks

  • Hat for sun protection

  • Sunglasses

  • Gloves

  • Toiletries

  • Toothbrush and toothpaste

  • Shampoo and conditioner

  • Soap or body wash

  • Deodorant

  • Sunscreen

  • Lip balm with SPF

  • First aid kit

  • Prescription medications

  • Insect repellent

  • Travel documents and essentials

  • Driver's license or ID card

  • Credit and debit cards

  • Cash

  • Health insurance card

  • Hotel booking confirmation

  • Car rental confirmation

  • National Park pass

  • Electronics and gadgets

  • Smartphone

  • Charger for smartphone

  • Camera

  • Charger for camera

  • Portable power bank

  • Headphones

  • Flashlight or headlamp

  • Miscellaneous items

  • Reusable water bottle

  • Snacks

  • Backpack for hiking

  • Maps and guidebooks

  • Binoculars

  • Travel pillow and blanket

  • Travel-size laundry detergent

  • Plastic bags for trash

Weather Conditions

Visiting the Grand Canyon in Arizona is a breathtaking experience, but it's essential to be prepared for the weather conditions you might encounter. The Grand Canyon experiences a variety of weather conditions throughout the year, with temperatures varying greatly depending on the season and the time of day. During the summer months, temperatures at the bottom of the canyon can reach as high as 120°F (49°C), while the rim remains cooler, averaging around 70-85°F (21-29°C). It's crucial to stay hydrated and avoid strenuous activity during the peak heat of the day. In contrast, winter can be quite chilly, especially at the rim where temperatures can drop to around 20°F (-6°C) or lower. Snowfall is common, so be prepared with warm clothing and appropriate footwear if you plan to hike. Spring and fall offer milder temperatures, but weather can change rapidly, so it's always a good idea to pack layers. Rainstorms can occur, particularly in late summer, so waterproof gear is recommended. Regardless of when you visit, remember that the Grand Canyon's high elevation can make the sun's rays particularly strong. Always wear sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses to protect yourself from sunburn. Also, keep in mind that weather conditions can change rapidly in the Grand Canyon. It's always a good idea to check the forecast before setting out for the day and be prepared for a variety of conditions. Lastly, remember that the Grand Canyon is a desert environment. Even if the temperature doesn't seem too high, the dry air can dehydrate you quickly. Always carry plenty of water, especially if you plan to hike into the canyon. Enjoy your visit to this magnificent natural wonder, but always respect the power of nature and stay safe.

MonthHi / Lo (°C)Weather Overview

January

8° / -6°

January is the coldest month in Grand Canyon, with occasional snowfall. It's a great time for winter hiking and photography.

February

10° / -5°

February is still quite cold with a chance of snow. The park is less crowded, offering a peaceful visit.

March

13° / -3°

March sees a slight increase in temperature. The snow begins to melt, making trails more accessible.

April

17° / 0°

April brings warmer weather, but nights can still be chilly. It's a great time for camping and hiking.

May

22° / 4°

May is a pleasant month with mild temperatures. It's perfect for outdoor activities and wildlife viewing.

June

27° / 8°

June is the start of summer with hot days. Early morning or late evening hikes are recommended.

July

31° / 12°

July is the hottest month in Grand Canyon. Stay hydrated and avoid strenuous activities during peak hours.

August

29° / 11°

August is still hot, but afternoon thunderstorms can bring relief. Be prepared for sudden weather changes.

September

24° / 8°

September brings cooler temperatures. It's a great time to visit for comfortable hiking and sightseeing.

October

18° / 3°

October offers beautiful fall colors and cooler temperatures. It's an ideal time for photography and long hikes.

November

12° / -1°

November is a transition into winter with cooler temperatures. It's a quiet time to visit with fewer tourists.

December

8° / -5°

December is a cold month with potential snowfall. It's a magical time to see the Grand Canyon covered in snow.

Did you know?

Did you know that the Grand Canyon is around 277 miles long?

1 of 10

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