Your important questions about the Grand Canyon answered
If you’re thinking about visiting the Grand Canyon and you have a few burning questions that need answers then read on below to find out more.
What is there to do there?
There are endless activity options at the Grand Canyon and there’s something for everyone. If you’re travelling in from Las Vegas then a Grand Canyon helicopter tour of the West Rim is a great activity to try. Whether you’re a couple or with the kids seeing the Grand Canyon from above is an exhilarating experience. You can even finish your day off with a champagne lunch at the base of the Grand Canyon, giving you the chance to see the national park from both angles.
Other fun activities that are popular in the area include mule rides through the steep trails of the national park, fishing, camping and white water rafting along the Colorado River. Visitors who enjoy this type of outdoor activity are in for a treat because it’s also possible to take part in activities such as boating and water sports, or ziplining 500 feet about the floor.
For those visitors looking to take part in cultural activities there are plenty of museums, galleries and historically significant landmarks and attractions in the area. Take a historical train ride through the national park abroad one of the restored railcars, or take part in traditional Native American learning experience.
There’s also great sightseeing opportunities such as the Skywalk which has views over Eagle Point and the West Rim.
Whatever it is that you want to do, whether it be adventure, relaxing, learning or a combination of everything, it’s on offer at the national park.
How big is the Grand Canyon?
This is a common question of first time visitors. Before you see it is difficult to grasp the sheer size and magnitude of the national park, although the title does give a little bit away about what to expect at the ‘Grand’ Canyon.
The national park covers an area of about 1900 square miles in total, with it being about 100 miles deep in most places. Covering the area from point to point between the different rims takes about 4 hours.
Many people underestimate the size of the national park and believe that they can see it all in a day trip from Las Vegas, consequentially they spend all day driving from one point to another trying to get photos at the main sightseeing spots.
The truth is that to do the Grand Canyon well and to really get a chance to appreciate everything that it has to offer visitors should set aside at least a few times.
If you’re really under a time crunch and just can’t stay any longer than a day then seeing everything from above is the best way to cover off as much ground as possible and avoid fighting with the crowds all day.
How can I get there?
If you’re travelling from Las Vegas then the best way to reach the Grand Canyon is by travelling out along old parts of route 66. If you’re travelling from Phoenix, Arizona then take the 1-17 north to the 1-40 is the shortest way to get there.
If you don’t have a car with you then many tour operators will run shuttles from the hotels, this can be an easy way to get there. There are also regular bus tours that run from the cities and can be both a great and very comfortable way to travel as well as being an informative and fun way to see the Grand Canyon.
Should I see the floor of the Grand Canyon?
Many people only ever look over the rim of the national park, or see it from above and never descend to floor. Whilst the view over the national park from above is certainly impressive, it is also well worth it to travel down and see everything from a different perspective.
The national park looks completely different when looking at it from below and many visitors find that the hikes down into the park are the highlight of their trip.
The Colorado River is also beautiful and one of the most enjoyable parts of the Grand Canyon experience so it’s well worth seeing. The national park is a mile deep in most areas so it’s quite a trip to reach the bottom, if you’re not able to proceed on foot then a mule trip down to the bottom is a great alternative.
What is the weather like?
Weather in the national park can be extreme, during the summer it can easily reach the high thirties to early forties Celsius, In the winter it can be very cold, and certain parts of the park will be closed because of extreme weather and snowfall.