Grand Canyon - FURTHER INFORMATION
Grand Canyon - Grand Canyon visitor guide showing a virtual tour of 'Grand Canyon' linked to an interactive map with local and travel information. 360° panoramas from Arizona.
The Grand Canyon. It is vast, some 10 miles across and over 100 miles long, forming a boundary between Arizona and Utah in the USA. Carved over millennia by the Colorado River as it threads it's way down the bottom, through rock that is over 1,840 million years old.
The most accessible, and most popular, part of the Grand Canyon in the South Rim section of the Grand Canyon National Park. Hundreds of thousands of people visit annually to take part in everything from hiking, camping, white water rafting, camping, helicopter trips, a 'sky walk' over a side canyon. Fly over trips in helicopters and day trips are a popular excursion from Las Vegas, but many stay in the hotels just south of the southern entrance to the park, or in Williams and Flagstaff, two nearby alpine villages.
Grand Canyon Viewpoints
The South Rim scenic route has a number of dramatic panoramic viewing points from which to see parts of the Grand Canyon. This guide has 360 panoramas taken from a number of points on the South Rim. These panoramas include images from the Grand Canyon Village viewpoint next to the hotels, Yavapai Point, Mather Point and Yaki Point. These points are all served by free buses that depart from Grand Canyon Village and hotels. The viewpoints further east of Yaki Point are along Desert View Drive, which traverses about 20 miles of the Grand Canyon's South Rim and can only be accessed by car. These viewpoints include (from west to east)Grandview Point, Moran Point, Lipan Point and Desert View near the Eastern Entrance of Grand Canyon National Park, a favorite spot to watch the sun set over the Grand Canyon.
Hiking the Grand Canyon
Thousands come each year to hike into the Grand Canyon. there are several trails beginning on the South Rim. The westernmost one is Hermit Trail starting west of the Grand Canyon Village at Hermits Rest. Bright Angel Trail begins within Grand Canyon Village itself. A little to the east of this is the South Kaibab Trail starting near to Yaki Point. These trails are all serviced by the park's buses. Further east on the Desert View Drive is the Grandview Trail, starting at Grandview Point.
The South Kaibab Trail is one of the more popular trails for day visitors as it descends rapidly into the Grand Canyon down a dramatic path to the famous, and aptly named Ooh-Aah Point offering a stunning vista inside the canyon. From here the path continues down to the first Staging Point before continuing down to Skeleton Point, the first place where hikers get a glimpse of the Colorado River at the bottom of the Grand Canyon.
Day trips are an easy option, giving walkers dramatic views from within the canyon itself. Walkers must take care to carry all the water they need, as there is none available within the Grand Canyon itself. At some times of the year parts of the path may be covered in snow and ice. Appropriate footwear is a must though some insist on hiking into the Grand Canyon wearing only sandles. While some of the paths are maintained, they are all steep in places, with long drop offs and uneven. However, the rewards, as shown in these images, are worth the effort.
Grand Canyon Tours
Several companies offer a variety of trips into the Grand Canyon. Many of these are hugely popular and often need booking up to a year in advance. There are regular mule trips down the South Kaibab Trail, and information about these can be found at either Bright Angel Lodge of the Canterra Park and Resorts. Different companies also offer helicopter or fixed wing flights over the Grand Canyon providing dramatic air tours. Very high in demand are the river trips, which can last from one day to 2 weeks, providing smooth water or white water rafting with camping and guides. These must be booked well in advance.
Grand Canyon National Park
P.O. Box 129
Grand Canyon, AZ 86023
Grand Canyon National Park Website
TRAVEL DIRECTIONS AND GETTING THERE
Car: The Grand Canyon Village is about 55 miles from Williams (64 and US180 north) and 78 miles from Flagstaff (US180 north). These are the most popular nearby destinations with numerous hotels. Just outside the Grand Canyon National Park is Tusayan, a small strip village made mostly of hotels and motels.
Flight: Grand Canyon National Park Airport next to Tusayan