The Grand Canyon is perhaps one of the most famous and iconic national parks in the world. It’s a large natural gorge that has been carved out by the Colorado River for millions of years, and today draws tourists from all over to visit this amazing landmark. You can find lots of information on how to plan a trip and see this amazing park, but what if you’re looking for some last minute tips on where to stay at the Grand Canyon?
But if you’re planning a vacation in the area, there are some things you should know before even coming here. Or at least if you want to stay overnight. Where should you stay when visiting the Grand Canyon? Is it better to stay inside the park or outside? Which cities near the park are ideal for an overnight stay? Our favorite place to sleep is the town Sedona which is 40 minutes away from the park.
Lodging Inside the Canyon
The south rim of the grand canyon is the most visited part compared to the north rim. There are convenient hotels located in the south rim. However when you see the word hotel, these are what you typically think of. They are rustic cabins and older structures on the outside.
- Yavapai Lodge
- El Tovar Hotel
- Bright Angel Lodge
- Kachina Lodge
- Thunderbird Lodge
- Maswik Lodge
The north rim of the Grand Canyon doesn’t offer as many places to stay. Especially because the north rim is closed off during some of the year (It’s open between May 15th-October 15th). So if you want to stay in the places listed below make sure you book in advance.
- The Grand Canyon Lodge
- Phantom Ranch – This is located at the bottom of the Canyon and reservations can only be made through a lottery
The West Rim of the Grand Canyon is where the Skywalk is and is managed by the Hualapai Tribe. Because it is managed and run by the Hualapai Tribe there aren’t as many options for lodging inside or around the park itself. Hualapai Ranch is the only place inside the park but there is also Hualapai Lodge 90 minutes outside of the West Rim. The last option of places to stay on the West Rim of the Grand Canyon is a real ranch called Grand Canyon Western Ranch Resort. It is about 2 miles from the West Rim.
Lodging Outside the Canyon
Finally on to accommodations outside the South Rim. The best options when wanting to stay in the South Rim of the grand Canyon are to look at surrounding cities. Flagstaff is a great option as it’s a college town so there is a lot going on. You can also visit our favorite place Sedona if you stay in Flagstaff! There are plenty of hotel options that you can choose from based on your plans. If you want something a little closer and less crowded head to the town of Williams. If you want the authentic Route 66 vibes consider staying in the Canyon Motel.
- Page, Arizona (Perfect if your plans including visiting Antelope Canyon)
- Kanab, Utah
- St. George, Utah
- Hurricane, Utah (Great if you are also visiting Zion National Park)
Those who visit the West Rim are typically going for a day trip. If you are visiting from out of town and have a rental car here are a few of the best places to stay after your visit to the West Rim and the Skywalk:
- Las Vegas, Nevada
- Kingman, Arizona
Things to see at the Grand Canyon
Whether you are staying for a few days or only coming for a day trip here is a list of spots you cannot miss!
This is located on the West Rim. It is a horseshoe glass shaped bridge that gives you a clear view 4,000 feet down to the Canyon floor. Professionals are there for you to get great picture taking experience.
Staying in Las Vegas but don’t have access to a car to get to the Grand Canyon? This is the perfect excursion for you. You can take a helicopter ride from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon. They will pick you up from your Las Vegas hotel and drop you off after your ride. The helicopter has panoramic windows so you won’t miss any view. After landing at the bottom of the Grand Canyon you are allowed to explore until it is time to head back! Throughout the tour you will see the following:
- Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam
- Grand Wash Cliffs
- Grapevine Mesa
- Guano Point and Eagle Point (Grand Canyon Skywalk)
If you want to actually go into the Grand Canyon instead of just viewing from the top head over to the South Rim. Here you can take a guided mule tour down into the Canyon. There are two options: an overnight trip where you will stay the night in Phantom Ranch (Listed above) or a 3 hour round trip along the rim. These are offered year round at the South Rim!
Overall Best Hotel Picks Near the Grand Canyon
- La Quinta by Wyndham Flagstaff
- Residence Inn by Marriott Flagstaff
- La Quinta by Wyndham Williams
- Quality Inn near Grand Canyon
- Holiday Inn Express Grand Canyon
- Best Western Premier Grand Canyon Squire Inn
Fortunately, there is a variety of lodging options from which to choose as you plan your Grand Canyon vacation, from the stylish and luxurious to more rustic and budget-friendly accommodations. Wherever you stay, make sure to visit the Grand Canyon itself. It may be one of the most popular destinations in the world, but it’s also one of the most unique and awe-inspiring. And the views are just as impressive at sunrise or sunset as they are during the prime daytime hours. We hope the article above assists you in planning an unforgettable vacation to one of America’s most beautiful natural landmarks.