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On the 1 – 1.5hr drive towards the Grand Canyon South Rim, listen to fascinating stories and a plan for exploring the Park.
We’ll make a quick geology recap interesting, share the achievements of a woman who shined in the male dominated field of architecture, tell you about some of the local wildlife, recount the drama of some unscrupulous entrepreneurs and direct you to where you can learn more about local Native American tribes.
Once inside the Park, we tour straight to the best viewpoints of Mather and Yavapai on a loop around Grand Canyon Village. Then our drive extends along Desert View Drive, to the many recommended viewpoints including Grandview, Lipan, Duck Rock, culminating with a visit to Desert View Watchtower.
Most of these viewpoints provide very easy and comfortable access to enjoy the changing colors as light and shadow play across crevices throughout the day.
Williams, Flagstaff or Cameron
It is possible to see the Grand Canyon sites in a single day. But it’s much more enjoyable if you can spend a couple of days so you can view the changes in light, hike or bike along rim or even down into the canyon
170 – 190 miles if you are driving from Williams or Flagstaff and completing it as a loop
Though the straight line distance from the South Rim to the North Rim is only about 10 miles, the driving distance is about 220 miles, and takes around 4 hours! If arriving from the North Rim, you will join the tour commentary at Cameron, AZ.
Hiking to the bottom of the Canyon in and back in one day is a very strenuous, usually hot and very exposed hike that often takes hikers more than 10 hours to complete. Unless you are in excellent shape and well equipped, NPS urges you not to attempt it.
But, it is a nice feeling, and a change of perspective to get “below the rim” and there are several hiking opportunities that allow you to hike into the canyon without going all the way to the bottom.
Grand Canyon West Rim is located on the tribal land of the Hualapai Nation. It is located about 2.5 hours drive from Las Vegas.
It depends how much driving you want to do. It takes 4.5 -5 hours driving each way from Las Vegas to reach the Grand Canyon South Rim. If you don’t mind the idea of 10 hours driving with only 1-2 hours at enjoy the Canyon, then you may choose this option.
The West Rim only requires 2.5 hours driving each way – so approximately half the driving time. Though not the “traditional” Grand Canyon views, the West Rim views are just as immense and spectacular. This is the location of the Glass SkyWalk.
Grand Canyon West is operated by the Hualapai Nation, not by the NPS. They charge a legacy fee for entry to the site, but that includes free shuttle bus transfers between different viewpoints.
Its really your choice, but choices offer advantages. The West Rim is included in the Las Vegas Driving Tour. The South Rim tour does not have commentary all the way from Las Vegas.