Just a short drive Northeast of Flagstaff, Arizona lies a rugged land atop the vast Colorado Plateau. Here you can find what remains of an ancient Puebloan people. Wupatki National Monument protects numerous ancient dwellings of peoples who have long since moved on. Perhaps the main highlight of the Wupatki National Monument is the self-guided tour of the Wupatki Pueblo. As the largest dwelling in the region, it provides a great example of what life might have been like for someone living in such a village.
Be sure to check out the visitor center before you head out on your self-guided tour…and don’t miss out on the blowhole and ball court not too far from the main pueblo structure.
Wupatki National Monument houses several other archeological sites which include: Lomaki Pueblo, Citadel and Nalakihu pueblos, and Wukoki Pueblo. Be sure to spend some time enjoying the nuances of these unique structures. And, as always, visit with care to ensure future visitors are able to equally enjoy these fragile resources.
Visitor Center: open daily (except Dec 25th); specific hours vary by season
Trails are open during daylight hours
Fees: *Please note Wupatki and Sunset Crater Volcano National Monuments are connected by a 35-mile loop road and both monuments are covered by one fee.
- Private Vehicle: $25 for 7-days
- Bicyclist/Pedestrian: $15 for 7-days
- Motorcycle: $20 for 7-days
Other accommodations: No lodging, gas stations, or restaurants are located in either of the monuments. The closest major services are located in Flagstaff.
The South Rim of The Grand Canyon National Park is the most visited of all the rims. Think of it like your Mom’s favorite kid. She says she doesn’t have one, but we all know who she visits most. The West Grand Canyon is where you will find the Grand Canyon Skywalk. This famous glass walkout makes parents everywhere clench up tight enough to squeeze out a diamond. The East Grand Canyon is quickly gaining popularity due to Antelope Canyon & Horseshoe Bend. The North Rim is seasonally limited from May 15th to October 15th.
The Grand Canyon is often viewed as a single destination, but there are four main places to visit and tour. If you aren’t sure what to do, when to do it, or how to make it epic, we recommend hiring one of Arizona’s guides and outfitters.
Hopi guides lead members of the Coronado Expedition (the first Europeans) to the Canyon.
Major John Wesley Powell leads the first successful expedition down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon.
Senator Benjamin Harrison introduced the first of several unsuccessful bills to establish the Grand Canyon National Park.
John Hance, the first non-native settler, starts to promote mining and other ventures.
The Grand Canyon was first set aside as a forest reserve by President Benjamin Harrison.
The first automobile, a Toledo Eight Horse, made it to the Canyon.
President Theodore Roosevelt proclaimed the Grand Canyon Game Preserve.
President Theodore Roosevelt established the Grand Canyon National Monument.
Arizona becomes a state.
The gates of the dam were closed, flooding the area upstream of the dam; forming Lake Powell.
The park doubled in size by the Grand Canyon National Park Enlargement Act, passed by President Gerald Ford.
Some questions you should ask as you plan your Grand Canyon National Park vacation:
- What time of year are you wanting to travel?
- Who you are traveling with and what are their interests?
- How much time do you have to spend?
- What kind of activities do you want to experience?
When contemplating a visit to The Grand Canyon National Park, priority #1 should be to book your lodging and book it ASAP.
Hotels and Lodging in the Grand Canyon are known to sell out months, or even a year or more in advance, depending on your planned destination and season.
The Grand Canyon National Park hotels and lodges run the gamut from ultra-modern, with all the amenities modern travelers expect, to bare-bones rustic cabins that offer a clean place to lay your head and not much more.
Vacation rental homes, bed and breakfasts, and glamping resorts also warrant consideration for larger traveling parties, individuals who prefer to cook their own meals, and those who wish to experience their destination on a deeper cultural and personal level.
Either way, the Grand Canyon should top your must-see list.
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