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Jan 16

Top 10 Things to See or Do in Grand Canyon National Park

Grand Canyon National Park is one of the crown jewels in America’s National Park System.  I have been fortunate enough to have been there twice, and Karen and I are currently debating going there again this spring or next fall.  We try to go in the non-peak season to miss some of the crowd which is still hard to do because around 5 million people visit the Grand Canyon every year.  Karen and I highly recommend putting the Grand Canyon on your bucket list if you have not seen it.  The Grand Canyon has over a million acres of land so there are lots of things to see or do.  Whenever Karen and I planning a trip of this scale we also like to make a list of things that we would want to see while we are there.  So, the next time we are there Karen and I are going to try to check off as many things on our top 10 list as we can.

Top 10 Things to see or do in Grand Canyon National Park

10. Grand Canyon Railway

Grand Canyon Railway 2007via
Is it practical probably not, is it value friendly certainly not, but if you are going to have a once in a lifetime experience when traveling to the Grand Canyon then this is the way to do it.  The Grand Canyon Railway began its service in 1901 and stop in 1968.  Fortunately it was revived in 1989 and now you can travel the rails to the Grand Canyon like past generations did.

9. Grand Canyon Village

Grand Canyon Villagevia
What will be the most packed area of the park and despite the crowds especially in the summer, it is a do not miss.  The popular Bright Angel Trail is there along with the scenic overlook Yavapai Point.  There is also lodging, souvenir shops, and other areas to explore.

8. Cape Royal Drive

Cape Royal-Grand Canyonvia
A north rim drive that makes it worth traveling all that way for.  Cape Royal Drive is not nearly as crowded as the south rim with several wonderful view points of the Grand Canyon.

7. Rim Trail

Grand Canyon National Park Active Trails Program 4638via
Probably the flattest trail at the Grand Canyon the Rim Trail offers one wondrous view after another along the South rim.  The Rim Trail traces the canyon’s edge and offers a chance to see a lot more of the canyon without the pain of taking the more strenuous hikes like Bright Angel Trail or the Kaibab Trail.

6. Rafting the Grand Canyon

Raft Trip Through Grand Canyon on Colorado Rivervia
What better way to see the Grand Canyon then getting to know the river that created it. Whether it is a daytrip or multiple-day-trip down the Colorado a rafting trip will give you a different perspective of why this national park is so grand.

5. Havasu Falls

Havasu Fallsvia
Havasu Falls, while not a part of the Grand Canyon National Park, is must see if you are in the area.  If you are planning on seeing the most beautiful falls in the Grand Canyon make sure you plan ahead knowing what reservations you need to make and permits you must receive because the falls are on Havasupai Tribal Land.

4. Bright Angel Trail

Bright Angel Trailvia
Bright Angel Trail is one of the two trails that take hikers from the south rim down to the Colorado River. The trailhead is easy to get to from the Grand Canyon Village.  This is the premier trail of the Grand Canyon and is just one of the hikes that even non-hikers will know about and be impressed when you tell them you hiked it.

3. Toroweap Point

Toroweap Point, Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona, USAvia
Arguably the most breathtaking view of the Grand Canyon, but the really rough road will make most visitors think twice about venturing to see it.  This place is not a last minute destination planning and having the right equipment will go a long way to making this worthwhile.  If you are not into that check local touring companies to see what they have to offer.

2. South Kaibab Trail

South Kaibab Trailvia
South Kaibab Trail is one of the two trails that take hikers from the south rim down to the Colorado River.  Less crowded then the Bright Angel Trail because it requires a shuttle to the trailhead part of the year.  It is a steep trail so be prepared with walking sticks to help save your knees, but the views are worth it.

1. Desert View Drive

Lipan Point, Grand Canyon, Arizona, USAvia
The main park road of the South Rim of the Grand Canyon extends from the Grand Canyon Village area to the east entrance of the park offers one scenic viewpoint after another.  If you are a traveler that cannot or does not want to go far from your car then this road will help you see why the Grand Canyon is a crown jewel of the American National Park System.

We hope you enjoyed our list of the top 10 things to see or do in Grand Canyon National Park. Let us know what you think of our list, is there anything that you think we left off or if you disagree with our top 10 sound off by leaving a comment.  Please check out our other top ten lists by clicking here.  Happy Travels!

For more information about Grand Canyon National Park visit their website at http://www.nps.gov/grca/index.htm

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