Havasu Falls, the Grand Canyon Skywalk and several other popular attractions bring in millions of tourists to the Grand Canyon National Park each year. The Grand Canyon offers dozens of unique activities and memorable attractions to provide a once-in-a-lifetime experience to sightseers, hikers and more. The Grand Canyon is one of the Seven Wonders of the World for many reasons, including is scenic views, majestic beauty and outdoor entertainment.
Many of these attractions and activities are available year-round. However, you can often experience smaller crowds and a more moderate temperature during the spring and fall seasons. By learning about the top attractions of the Grand Canyon, you will be better prepared to plan your trip and ensure that you visit each monumental location throughout the expansive and breathtaking landscape that the Grand Canyon has to offer.
Hiking to the Havasu Falls
The Havasu Falls are located within the Havasupai Indian Reservation, which lies on the south side of the Colorado River and is inaccessible by road. Each year, thousands of visitors explore the spectacular waterfalls and isolated tribal community located within the Reservation.
This unique hiking experience begins at the Hualapai Hilltop and is only available by reservation. This hiking experience is not a day hike. In fact, an overnight reservation is required and a three-day reservation is recommended in order to experience all that the area has to offer. The hike from the Hualapai Hill to the campgrounds is 10 miles alone.
Discover the Breathtaking View of the Grand Canyon Skywalk
The Grand Canyon Skywalk is by far the most famous attraction on the west side of the Grand Canyon. The Skywalk features a horseshoe-shaped, glass-floored walkway that projects about 70 feet from the rim of the canyon. The Skywalk offers breathtaking views of the Grand Canyon as well as a unique experience.
The Grand Canyon Skywalk is managed by the Hualapai Tribe and managed on tribal lands. The Skywalk lays near Peach Springs, which also offer lodging, a restaurant and gift shop. As the Skywalk is one of the most famous attractions within the Grand Canyon, tickets for the Skywalk are sold both individually and as part of several packages and tours.
Experiencing Antelope Canyon Tours
Antelope Canyon Navajo tours offer visitors the opportunity to experience the Grand Canyon in a unique way. Most tours offer a guided tour through either the upper or lower antelope canyon, so it is worth learning more about each tour in order to maximize your experience.
Upper Antelope Canyon Tours feature iconic light beams, offering unique photographic opportunities. Additionally, upper tours offer an easier trek compared to the lower canyon tours. However, upper canyon tours are generally the most popular and can, therefore, be crowded and more expensive.
The lower canyon tours do not feature the iconic light beams that are featured within the upper canyons. Additionally, the trail through the canyons include stairs, upward climbs and narrower walkways that can make it difficult for individuals that are claustrophobic or have mobility limitations. Yet lower canyon tours still offer a memorable and unique experience, are generally more affordable and are often far less crowded.
Take a Ride on the Grand Canyon Railway
Operational since 1901, the Grand Canyon Railway offers passengers a distinctive journey into the Grand Canyon National Park. The railway offers transportation to the heart of the canyons and additional accommodations, including meals, baggage transfers and entertainment as well as lodging once you have reached your destination.
In addition to the sightseeing wonders the Grand Canyon Railway offers, the Polar Express offers a nighttime journey through the wilderness of Williams, Arizona to reach the “North Pole”, a winter wonderland complete with reindeer, presents, storytelling and Santa Claus. Available only during the winter season, this holiday tradition has limited space and reservations are often booked far in advance.
Explore the Grand Canyon Village
The Grand Canyon Village is a historic village that offers some of the best scenic overlooks of the Grand Canyon National Park, including the must-see Yavapai Point. Both guided and self-guided tours offer a more in-depth look at the village as well as the history of the canyon with tour highlights that include the Bright Angel Lodge, Lookout Studio, Kolb Studio, Hopi House and more.
In addition to tours, the Grand Canyon Village features a unique shopping experience and helicopter tours, scenic train rides and horseback riding opportunities. If you are interested in hiking within the Grand Canyon, then you can find several trails near the village, including the Bright Angel Trail, South Kaibab Trail, Rim Trail and the Hermit Trail.
While lodging is available within the village, a reservation is strongly recommended. In addition to lodging inside of the historic village, there are numerous camping opportunities within the area. A backcountry permit must be obtained should you intend to camp overnight.
Visit the Mather Point Grand Canyon Overlook
The Mather Point Grand Canyon overlook offers a breathtaking view of the canyon and has become a popular attraction due to its views and proximity to the south rim entrance of the Grand Canyon National Park. A short walk from the south rim visitor center, the Mather Point viewing area offers several railed overlooks that were built upon projecting rocks as well as the Rim Trail, which offers even more spectacular views while hiking on the way to Yavapai Point.
Learn Something New at the Yavapai Museum of Geology
If you intend to visit the south rim of the Grand Canyon, then it is worth taking the time to visit the Yavapai Observation Station and Museum. Here, you can learn more about the Grand Canyon and the geological events that caused the formation of the canyon.
In addition to a wealth of information about the canyon and the geology behind it, you can gain a unique view of the Grand Canyon as the museum offers a three-dimensional nature and scale of the Grand Canyon. The museum also features other three-dimensional models, interpretive panels, powerful photographs and stunning handcrafted artwork.