Grand Canyon trip planning Enlightened

Hance Rapid Grand Canyon NPS photo by Carl Bowman

101 Things to do at the Grand Canyon

Everyone loves a good 101 Things to Do Guide, so we thought we’d post our eBook on the Grand Canyon Guru blog. Grand Canyon National Park and the surrounding areas are huge and you could spend a lifetime exploring them, but with this guide you’ll get a head start.  From tours and hotels, to in depth information for more independent travelers the Grand Canyon Guru will enlighten your Grand Canyon adventure. We hope you enjoy learning more about the world’s grandest canyon!

The Best Activities

1 Enjoy the View- The Grand Canyon has some of the most amazing vistas in the World.  The best access and some say the best views are from the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park.  Access to this part of the park is open year round from the Desert View or Tusayan entrance stations. 

If you want a little more solitude the North Rim is the place to be.  There are several viewpoints on both paved roads and 4x4 roads on the rim of the canyon.  Open from mid-May though mid-October you can find a view to yourself.

2 Take a Hike- Hiking the Grand Canyon is an activity almost anyone can enjoy.  From a short stroll along the rim to an all-day adventure hiking is one of the best ways to experience this awesome place.  For those of you who want more than a day below the rim, grab your backpack and set off on a multi-day adventure.  What a local expert to take you on a hike, no problem contact one of the local outfitters to do all the planning for you.

3 Go on a leisurely float down the River- Although the Grand Canyon is known for its thrilling whitewater rafting trips, the Colorado River also offers up a great smooth water float just upriver from the park for families and people who want a more relaxing experience. 

4 One Day Whitewater Adventure- Get your adrenaline fix with the only one day whitewater rafting trip through the Grand Canyon.  This trip is run by the Hualapai Tribe in the western Grand Canyon and even includes a helicopter ride up to the rim at the end of the trip.  Be ready for a full day and possible cancelations if summer monsoons close the road.

5 Embark on a Rafting Expedition- Running the Grand is one of the premier whitewater trips in the world.  Exciting rapids, amazing views and a wilderness experience will make this an adventure you will never forget.  From 3 days to two weeks the Grand’s Certified Guides offer several options for the adventure of a lifetime.  For those of you with the experience to run the Grand Canyon on your own, sign up for the National Park Lottery and cross your fingers.

6 Take a Scenic Drive- Feel like staying in your car.  The Grand Canyon is full of opportunities for scenic drives.  From the South Rim’s paved viewpoints to jeep roads along the North Rim and even roads down to the Colorado River you can explore a lot of Canyon from the comfort of your car.

7 Hop on a Bus- From the free Grand Canyon shuttles, to Grand Canyon Bus tours of all shapes and sizes you can let someone else do the driving for you and just soak in the views on your Grand Canyon Vacation.

8 Get a Birdseye View on a Scenic Plane or Helicopter Flight- One of the areas most popular tours are the Helicopter and Plane flights that soar above the world’s grandest canyon.   Several tour operators offer scenic flights over the canyon with departures from various destinations around Grand Canyon National Park.

9 Saddle up for a Mule Ride- Mule rides into the Grand Canyon are another way to get below the rim, and one of the Grand Canyons most popular tours.  Most of the trips depart from the South Rim, but there are outfitters in several other parts of the Canyon including the North Rim and Havasu Falls.

10 Explore the Hidden Paradise of Havasu Falls-  There are no roads to Havasu Falls so hiking or horseback are usually your only options to access these turquoise waterfalls, unless you make it on one of the occasional helicopter flights.  Located on the Havasupai Reservation deep within the western Grand Canyon this is a must see destination for the adventurous traveler.   Experienced hiker can do the trip on their own, but there are also some great backcountry guides to take care of everything for you.

11 Hike to Grand Canyon’s secret waterfalls- If you’re a seasoned Grand Canyon hiker, Havasu Falls is not the only waterfall in the Grand Canyon.  Elves chasm, Deer Creek and Thunder River are a few of the backcountry waterfalls that dot the Canyon’s desert landscape. 

12 Walk the Skywalk-  In the Western Grand Canyon on the Hualapai Indian Reservation is a glass bridge called the Skywalk, that stretches over the canyon rim for a truly unique view looking straight down.  This one of a kind attraction is a great stop if you have the time to head to this part of the Grand Canyon.

13 Stop by a Visitor Center- Want to get some free travel advice and save a lot of time and money on your Grand Canyon Vacation?  Stop by one of several visitor centers located within Grand Canyon National Park and the surrounding public lands.

14 Find a swimming hole- You won’t find much water on the Grand Canyon Rim, but for those of you willing to do a longer hike, or multi-day backpack the Grand Canyon has some awesome spots to cool off in the hot desert sun.

15 Take a Class with GCFI- The more you know and understand a place the better your experience will be.  From short day hikes to muti-day backcountry courses the Grand Canyon Field Institute will help enhance your Grand Canyon experience.

16 Ride the Grand Canyon Railway-  Go back in time and take a train into Grand Canyon Village.  From William, Arizona the Grand Canyon Railway offers a unique way to get to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, complete with a mock train robbery!

17 Go to a Guided Ranger Talk- The National Park Service offers free guided walks and talks with some very knowledgeable Park Rangers to teach you all kinds of cool Grand Canyon facts.  These are offered on the North and South Rim and also include junior ranger programs for the kids.

18 Observe an endangered species-  The Grand Canyon is probably the best place in the country to observe the California Condor, a bird with a 9 ½ foot wing span that not long ago was nearly extinct!  The South Rim near Grand Canyon Village is one of the best spots, but you never know where you’ll see these majestic creatures.

19 Jeep Tours- If your into 4X4 vehicles there are several jeep tours offered both inside and outside the National Park.  If you’re a little more adventurous, renting a 4wd vehicle will give you access to rarely visited viewpoints along the rim of the canyon that offer up a real adventure.   Check out Point Sublime, South Bass and Toroweap to get started and be sure to have the proper maps, equipment and supplies, these places are far away from any help!

20 You’d rather be Fishing-  Most access for fishing is only available to backcountry hikers and rafters along the Colorado River and it’s tributaries, but Lee’s Ferry has some good access close to parking areas and some world class fly fishing with local guides a short boat ride up the river.

21 Visit Ancient Ruins- the Tusayan Ruins and museum on the South rim of the Grand Canyon is an awesome place to learn about the Canyons earliest inhabitants and see some of their architecture and historical artifacts first hand.  For experienced hikers and rafters there are many archeological sites below the canyon rim!

22 Visit a Native American Reservation- the Hualapai, Havasupai, Hopi, Navajo, Zuni and Paiute Tribes live in and around Grand Canyon National Park.   The Grand Canyon is a sacred place to all the tribes and they have a wealth of history, art and culture to learn about that will greatly enhance your visit to the Grand Canyon.

23 Go Camping- the Grand Canyon is a great place to camp!  Aside from backcountry hiking and backpacking, there are several campgrounds on the North and South rim of the Grand Canyon.  Many of these campgrounds need to be reserved in advance, but there are some there are some great campsites along the rim that require no permit and offer a lot of solitude if you have high clearance and a bit of time.

24 Take a backpacking trip- What can we say about backpacking the Grand Canyon, well it’s a mecca!  With hundreds of miles of trails and even more off trail routes people have dedicated their lives to hiking and backing the Grand Canyon.  From designated campgrounds with water and flush toilets, to backcountry sites where the only other hikers will be Big Horn Sheep this is truly a world class destination!   When you step below the rim, be ready for a steep, awe inspiring and sometimes unforgiving desert landscape!

25 Grand Canyon Rock Climbing- It’s not Yosemite, but the Grand Canyon still has some rock climbing available.  There’s several sport climbing routes along the South Rim, as well as some bouldering near the rim and along the canyon floor.  For more experienced climbers there are multi-pitch trade routes deep within the canyon and almost certainly some 1st ascents available for the taking.  Just be selective when climbing in the canyon as it’s mostly made up of soft sedimentary rock.

26 Rent a bike on the South Rim- Most people don’t bring their bikes with them on vacation, but riding a bike is a great way to see the South Rim.  Bike rentals are available at Mather Point and offer a good option to park your vehicle, be eco-friendly and avoid the sometimes maddening traffic at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

27 Mountain Bike the Rainbow Rim Trail- A little known single track trail along the North Rim of the Grand Canyon is an awesome way to explore the park.  This trial is actually in Kaibab National Forest along the canyon rim and is the only single track bike trail along the Grand Canyon.  You’ll need high clearance and a map to get there, but it’s well worth the drive.

28 Explore a Cave- Most people don’t know that the Grand Canyon is full of caves.  Although most of them are not legal to enter, Cave of the Domes off Horseshoe Mesa is accessible.  It’s a strenuous trail to get there and there are no signs so you’ll have to do your research to find it, but it’s a great experience if you do.  Remember you are on your own down here and there is no water, food stands or elevator to get you out.  If this doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, try Grand Canyon Caverns outside of the park near Seligman for a nice guided tour in the largest cave in the area. 

29 Grand Canyon Skiing- You can ski in the desert?  That’s right the Grand Canyon gets snow.  The South Rim is 7,000 feet above sea level and can get snow into April.  Although it usually melts off pretty quickly, time it right and you can do some great cross country skiing on Forest Service Roads and some other trails along the rim.  The North with around 8,000 feet in elevation actually closes down due to the heavy snow pack it receives in the winter and offer single day and muti-day trips along the Canyon Rim and on the snowed in road to North Rim Village.  Just keep in mind there are no services out this way in the winter.

30 Grand Canyon RVing- Whether you’re traveling the country in an RV, or just going on a family vacation the Grand Canyon can be a great place to visit.  Camper village on the South Rim is the only place in the park with hook ups, but there are other RV options outside the National Park and if you can dry camp there’s some amazing and well graded dirt roads in Kaibab National Forest where you can find your own spot.

31 Get off the beaten path at Toroweap- In the far western Grand Canyon off the North rim is a seldom visited area called Toroweap (also known as Tuweap).  From Kanab, UT several hours down a dirt road will offer a rustic campground, a rugged trail to the Colorado River, small Ranger Station and a lot of Solitude.  This is an area best enjoyed during the cooler seasons for travelers who are not on a tight schedule.

32 Trophy Elk Hunting- Nope you absolutely cannot hunt in the National Park, but just outside its boundaries in Kaibab National Forest and several Native American Reservations some of the largest Elk in the country are taken every year.  You can get in a lottery for a permit on public lands, or pay for a guide from a local tribe.  Either way don’t forget to stop by the worlds grandest canyon on the way to your hunt to take in some world class views.

33 Wildlife Viewing- Huge Elk, mule deer, coyotes, big horn sheep, mountain lions, bobcats, tons of reptiles, the previously mentioned California Condor and much more can all be spotted on your Grand Canyon trip.  With over one million acres of wilderness the Grand Canyon is still full of wildlife.

34 Grand Canyon Imax- The truth is you just can’t see it all, but the Grand Canyon Imax near the South Rim in Tusayan, AZ can help.  This is a great Imax movie specific to the Grand Canyon and since most visitors spend less than a day in the park, this will show you all kinds of activities and hidden places you probably won’t have the time to see for yourself in a realistic Imax format.  It’s also a great way to escape bad weather or just relax with the kids after a busy day hiking and exploring.

35 Go Bowling- Hey sometimes the weather is bad or you just want to do something different when you get back to your hotel.  Well the Best Western Grand Canyon Squire Inn actually has a bowling lane as well as game room so you can stay busy even after an exciting day in Grand Canyon National Park.

36 Shoot some Photos- Don’t have so much fun on your Grand Canyon Vacation you can’t prove you were there.  Photographs make great memories and the Grand Canyon is very photogenic.  Professional photographers from around the globe would love to spend a day at the Canyon.  From endangered wildlife and scenic vistas, to whitewater rapids and glorious sunsets be sure to save some of those memories in digital format to show the friends and family when you have to go back home.

37 Drive to the Colorado River- Most people only get a glimpse of the Colorado River from afar unless they’re lucky enough to hike to the bottom or go rafting, but there are other ways to see the mighty Colorado.  Lee’s Ferry at the eastern boundary of the park has a paved road right to the river and for those of you with a 4X4 you can actually drive through the canyon along diamond creek on the Hualapai Indian Reservation right to the banks of the mighty Colorado.

38 Watch the Snow Fly- It’s usually sunny at the Grand Canyon, especially during the peak summer season, but there are other sides to this busy tourist destination.  Winter is quiet and usually fairly mild, but there are huge snow storm that blanket the Canyon Rim and turn the park into a winter wonderland if only for a little while.

39 Get Married at the Grand Canyon- Destination weddings are quite popular these days and the Grand Canyon has several options to tie the knot.  Within Grand Canyon National Park visitors can acquire a Special Use Permit from the park for specific locations along the rim where weddings are permitted by the park service.  There are also helicopter flights from Las Vegas to the West Rim, weddings along the river and even weddings in the backcountry if you bring along someone to marry you. 

40 Fly your plane to the South Rim- Right outside Grand Canyon Village is the town of Tusayan, AZ where there is a public airport.  Although most visitors there are heading out on commercially operated scenic flights, if you’re lucky enough to have your own plane the Tusayan Airport is one of several in the Grand Canyon area that will provide you with a base to explore the region.

41 Relax at the Spa-  Well Sedona might be a better option is you really want a spa, but there is a Salon with Spa services in the Best Western Squire Hotel in Tusayan so you can look your best before heading out for a nice dinner on the rim.

42 Get a job and stay a while- Although there are some awesome jobs with the National Park Service it is definitely easier to get a job with one of the private businesses operating in the Grand Canyon.  Xanterra Parks and Resorts is the biggest employer after the park and they run almost all of the hotels, restaurants and shops.  There are also a lot of tour operators that have some great guiding jobs for the outdoor enthusiast.

43 Find hidden treasure- Legend has it that there is an Egyptian Treasure hidden in a cave deep within the Grand Canyon.  No proof has ever been found and nothing can be removed form a National Park, but that doesn’t stop some people from trying.

44 Grand Canyon Geocaching- Geocaching is a great way to learn about the Grand Canyon.  Although you can’t cache physical objects, the park has a virtual geocaching program.  You can download the Earthcache Program from the parks website, or grab a copy when you arrive at the park.

45 Check out Rock Art- The Grand Canyon Area has a treasure trove of archeological resources including some great pictographs and petroglyphs.  Although most of the locations are not given to the public do a little exploring and you can easily find these links to the past.  Just a few hundred yards down the Bright Angel trail on the cliff faces to your left is a good place to start.

46 Go Off-Roading- Grand Canyon National Park and the surrounding Federal and Tribal Lands are full of 4X4 roads!  Just get a map, do a little preparation and research, and you can have a canyon vista all to yourself!

47 Catch a Sunrise or Sunset- You’d be surprised to see how few people take advantage of a Grand Canyon sunrise or Sunset.  With thousands of spots to choose from, this is definitely the most amazing time to watch the canyon in all its glory!  So grab a bottle of wine, make a picnic for the kids and enjoy one of the most awe inspiring sunrises or sunsets of your life.

48 Drive to Point Sublime- Aptly named Point Sublime is one of the best views in the canyon.  Located in an isolated part of the North Rim you’ll need time and high clearance to get here, but it’s well worth the trip.  You can even grab a permit from the backcountry office to camp there over night!

49 Have a campfire on the Rim- Few people know that along the North Rim of the Grand Canyon with high clearance and a sense of adventure you can drive right out to the rim and have your own campsite, campfire and all!  This is best done early in the season as fire restrictions won’t allow campfires once the fire danger is to high.  So stop in the Kaibab National Forest Visitor Center in Jacob Lake, get yourself a map and a fire permit and head to the North Rim for some hotdogs and smores’.

50 Hike to Historic Phantom Ranch- Located at the bottom of the Grand Canyon next to Bright Angel Campground is the historic Phantom Ranch.  The only way to get here is by hiking close to 10 miles, or getting on a mule.  There are both dorm style and private cabins as well as meals, but call in early because space is limited and reservations are hard to come by!

51 Volunteer to Help Out- There are all kinds of volunteer programs at the Grand Canyon and they can always use your help!  The National Park has its own Volunteers in Parks program, but the SCA, Americorp, YCC and many other groups do great work to help the Grand Canyon stay Grand!

52 Paint a Picture-The Grand Canyon loves to strike a pose for artists who want to capture it on canvas, or any other medium for that matter.  Whether you’re aspiring artist or work is being shown at Kolb Studio the Grand Canyon will inspire you!  If you want to learn how to paint, there are also classes with the Grand Canyon Field Institute to get you started.

53 See the Fall Colors- Because of its high elevation the North Rim of the Grand Canyon has some beautiful Aspen Groves.  Head up early in the fall season and you can enjoy few other tourists and the amazing gold colors all along the Rim!

54 Kolb Studio Exhibits- Originally the home of the Kolb brothers, Kolb Studio studio has various Grand Canyon related exhibits throughout the year  and is a great place to stop and visit if you enjoy art.

55 Lookout Studios- One of several building in Grand Canyon National Park designed by architect Mary Jane Colter Lookout Studios was originally a photography studio built to compete with nearby Kolb Studio.

56 Native American Craft Fairs- Just outside the south entrance to Grand Canyon National Park the town of Tusayan hosts Native American Craft fairs during the summertime high season.  If you want to do a little shopping you may be able to find some good deals here.

57 Native American Dances - There are several places to see Native American Dances in and around Grand Canyon National Park.  The annual Native American Heritage Days on the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park takes places every summer, usually in August.  Hopi House gift shop on the South Rim also hosts various Native American Dances.  Outside the park at Grand Canyon West the Hualapai Tribe also puts on dances for visitors to the area.

58 Grand Canyon Music Festival- This annual music festival that takes place for several weeks from the end of August into September, this is an opportunity to see world class musicians at a very inspiring destination.  Find out more at

59 Grand Canyon Star Party- Another great event held every June on the North and South Rims of the Grand Canyon is the annual star party.  Tucson Amateur Astronomy Association and on the Saguaro Astronomy Club of Phoenix set up telescopes and educate visitors about the wonders of the night sky at this free event.

60 Echoes from the Canyon- In this theatrical presentation held in late summer on the South Rim characters from the past come alive on stage telling tales of Grand Canyon’s rich history of adventure, struggle and exploration.

61 Check out the Grand Canyon Book Store- This is the best place to find books about everything Grand Canyon.  The bookstore is located across from the visitor on the South Rim and is run by the Grand Canyon Association, so part of the proceeds go towards helping the park.

62 Get your Grocery Order- Market Plaza on Grand Canyon’s South Rim has a full on grocery store to get all your supplies for exploring the Grand Canyon.  The North Rim has a market, but it’s quite a bit smaller.

63 Buy Native American Artwork- Hopi House located on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon is the best bet inside the park.  Outside the park in the small town of Cameron on the Navajo Indian Reservation is the Cameron Trading Post, where you can find anything from postcards to $100,000 authentic Navajo Rugs.  There are a million places in and around the Grand Canyon to buy Native American Artwork, but be careful where you buy if you’re getting something expensive that is supposed to be authentic. 

64 Purchase Grand Canyon Photos and Fine Art- Both Kolb Studio and Hopi House on the South Rim are good places to start if you’re looking for a nice piece to bring back home.   Fine art photographs, paintings, hand woven rugs and pottery are some of the more popular types of artwork at the canyon.

65 Pick-up Outdoor Gear- If you forget your backpack or didn’t realize it can snow on the rim of the Grand Canyon and want a warmer sleeping bag Market Plaza is the place to go.  Although the market on the North Rim has a few camping and hiking items Market Plaza on the South Rim is the only place with any real selection for outdoor gear.

66 Postcards and Trinkets-  This is an easy one, just drive through, past, towards or around the Grand Canyon and you will find all sorts of souvenir shops!

Grand Canyon Hotels and Lodging

67 Stay at one of 6 Lodges at Grand Canyon National Park’s South Rim- The lodges below run by Xanterra Parks and Resorts are inside the Park on or near the South Rim.  South Rim Lodging ranges from rustic cabins to historic rooms with a view.

1.     El Tovar Lodge-On the Rim

2.     Bright Angel Lodge- On the Rim

3.     Maswick Lodge- In the Park

4.     Thunderbird Lodge- On the Rim

5.     Kachina Lodge- In the Park

6.     Yavapai Lodge- In the Park

68 Stay at the Historic North Rim Lodge- The North Rim offers one lodge and this is at.  Situated right on the rim this historic lodge has loads of character and a great breakfast buffet!  The North Rim Lodge also has quite a few detached cabins located close by.

69 Stay below the Rim at Phantom Ranch- Hiking or riding a mule are the only ways to get to this unique lodge below the rim of the Grand Canyon.  Phantom Ranch has dorm style rooms and cabins, but make your reservation early, space goes quick!

70 Stay in Supai Village- This is another lodge located deep within the Grand Canyon on the Havasupai Indian Reservation.  The Havasupai Lodge is only accessible by an 8 mile hike or mule ride, unless you can get one of the few first come first serve helicopter flights.

71 Grand Canyon Ranch- On the way to Grand Canyon West and the Skywalk is the Grand Canyon Ranch.  If you are into checking a working ranch on your Grand Canyon Adventure this is the Dude Ranch for you!

72 Marble Canyon Lodging

1.     Marble Canyon Lodge- This small lodge is the closest to Lee’s Ferry.  It has a restaurant, gift shop and even an airstrip if you have a private plane or charter flight.  They’re known for having a great breakfast.

2.     Vermilion Cliffs Lodge- Next in the Marble Canyon lineup is Vermillion Cliffs.  This is a great place to eat, drink and be merry!  They also have a great selection of quality beers and a pool table.

3.     Cliff Dwellers Lodge- The last lodge along the Vermillion Cliffs makes a great burger and has an outfitter for the great fly fishing available right down the road.

Restaurants and Food

73 Grab a Navajo Taco- A southwest favorite the Navajo Taco is a piece of fry bread covered with taco meat, lettuce, tomato, onion, cheese and salsa.  Found at restaurants and road side stands all over the Grand Canyon they are guaranteed to single handedly ruin your diet!

74 Have a glass of wine for sunset- What better way to enjoy a Grand Canyon sunset than with a nice glass of wine.  Just walk along the rim until you find a quiet spot, have a seat and pour.

75 Picnic lunch on the Rim- The Grand Canyon is full of adventure, but sometimes it nice to relax and take in the view.  So put together a little lunch and head for the rim on your Grand Canyon visit.

76 Make some s’mores-  What camping trip would be complete without making some s’mores.  Head on over to the store for chocolate, marshmallows and graham crackers and get that campfire goin!

77 Breakfast at the El Tovar- Not only is breakfast at the El Tovar the best meal of the day, it’s also the most affordable.  There are lots of great options, but the smoked salmon eggs benedict with fresh squeezed OJ and coffee is definitely at the top of the list.

78 BBQ and Beer at Vermillion Cliffs- The Vermillion Cliffs Lodge located along (you guessed it) Vermillion Cliffs has some great ribs and a huge selection of quality beers to make that desert sunset even better.

79 Cookies at Jacob Lake- Jacob Lake Lodge in between the North Rim and Vermillion cliffs has some of the best cookies this side of the Mississippi!  Try out the Lemon Zucchini and throw in a nice thick chocolate shake and you’ll be a happy camper!

80 Ice cream at Hermits Rest- The South Rim of the Grand Canyon can be downright hot in the summer.  Take the scenic ride out to Hermits Rest and get yourself an ice cream cone, you deserve it!

81 Try some Prickly Pear Syrup-  This sweet treat is available at many of the local gift shops and is actually made from the fruit of the prickly pear cactus.  Don’t worry though, all the spines are removed!

82 Grab a bite on the South Rim

Maswick Cafeteria: located in the Maswick Lodge they serve fair quality cafeteria-style food at a fairly high price.

Maswick Lounge and Sports Bar: also located in the Maswick lodge this is a pretty good place to get a drink and watch a game.  Drinks are reasonably priced and you can order food.  The Mas has darts and a few video games as well as a pool table if you want to shoot some stick.

Canyon Village Market Place: Located in Market Plaza they serve good sandwiches, as well as some other lunch options.

Canyon Cafe: located near the Lobby of the Yavapai Lodge they serve cafeteria-style food.

Bright Angel Restaurant: located in the Bright Angel Lodge, the grill is your best bet for a good moderately priced meal in Grand Canyon Village.  They serve Southwest and American style meals such as fajitas, burgers, and Navajo Tacos a local favorite.

Arizona Room:  Also located in the Bright Angel lodge the Arizona Room is a nice 4 star restaurant with great food.  They are open for dinner and there is usually a fairly long wait during the busy season.

Bright Angel Bar/Canyon Coffee House: The place to get a drink in the Bright Angel Lodge, this cozy little bar also gets some good live music from time to time.   Aside from reasonably priced drinks, there is an espresso bar that a good stop for your morning caffeine fix and a pastry.   

Bright Angel Fountain:  Located on the backside of the Bright Angel Lodge only a few yards from the rim this is a great place for some gourmet ice cream on hot summer day.  They also have pre-made hot dogs, sandwiches, and drinks.

El Tovar Restaurant:  The Grand Canyons 5 star restaurant located in the El Tovar Lodge serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day.  Dinner usually requires a reservation, and both dinner and lunch are fairly pricey.  Breakfast is the best bargain, and if you get there early you can get a canyon view table.   Try out the eggs Benedict with smoked salmon, and a glass of fresh squeezed OJ and grade A coffee.

El Tovar Lounge: The ET Lounge is probably the best place to get a drink on the South Rim.  They make top-notch cocktails, have some great beers on tap, and they serve some good quality bar food.  The best part of this water hole however is the back porch where you can enjoy your beverage with a Canyon View.

Hermits Rest Snack Shack:  Like the name says this small store is located at Hermits Rest and sells snacks and some souvenirs.

Desertview Market Place: located near the Desertview Watchtower, they serve fair quality cafeteria-style food at a fairly high price, as well as a small general store.

83 Grab a bite in Tusayan

Tusayan Cafe:  The Tusayan Cafe is basically like a Denneys and has a variety of Diner type meals for breakfast lunch and dinner.

Wendys: Located on highway 64 in Tusayan

McDonalds: Located on highway 64 in Tusayan

RVs Stage Stop: RVs has Coffee, Pastries, and good sandwiches along with a good variety of souvenirs.

We Cook Pizza and Pasta: They serve pizza, pasta and other Italian dishes as well as several types of beer.  This is one of the more popular places to eat in Tusayan.

The Explorers Cafe: Serves hot dogs, fries, and other cafeteria-style food.
Pizza Hut:  Also located in the Imax explorers cafe

Spaghetti Western: Spaghetti Western serves pasta and other dinners

Sophies Mexican Restaurant: A small Mexican restaurant in Tusayan

Carvel Ice Cream:  This Carvel is next to We Cook Pizza and is open seasonally

Yippee-Ei-O Steakhouse: Western style Steak house located in Tusayan

The Grand Hotel

Canyon Star Saloon: Small bar next to the restaurant

Canyon Star Restaurant: Serves breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as buffet style meals for tour buses.

Grand Canyon Quality Inn

JJKs Restaurant: Serves a variety of different meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Best Western Squire

The Canyon Cafe: The cafe serves sandwiches and burgers

The Coronado Room: The Coronado Room is a fine dining restaurant 

The Saguaro Lounge: A sports bar with a pool table and the option to order food

The Fireside Lounge: A nice cocktail bar.

84 Grab a bite on the North Rim

North Rim Lodge

Lodge Dining Room: Serves breakfast, lunch and dinner with a great breakfast buffet for hungry hikers.
Rough Riders Saloon: The North Rims only bar.
The Coffee Shop: The place to get your espresso fix on the North Rim
Deli in the Pines: Deli and Sandwich shop on the North Rim

Kaibab Lodge Restaurant (Near the North Rim): Restaurant in the Kaibab lodge about 10 miles from the North Rim entrance station

Jacob lake Lodge: On the way to the North Rim this is a great family style restaurant with an assortment of meals.

85 Grab a bite on the West Rim

Skywalk Restaurant Coming Soon: The Hualapai tribe is planning on opening a new restaurant at the Skywalk, but for now there is only a snack shop.

86 Grab a bite along Marble Canyon

Marble Canyon Lodge: The closest lodge to Lees Ferry serves breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Cliff Dwellers Lodge: Serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  This lodge is known for its ribs, beer selection, and local celebrity Charlie.

Vermillion Cliffs Lodge:  Serves lunch and dinner as well as a good drink selection.

Parks near the Grand Canyon

87 Sedona- Land of red rocks, spas and vortexes Sedona, AZ is a great place to visit just down the road from Grand Canyon’s South Rim.  Mountain biking, jeep tours, art galleries and fine dining Sedona has a lot of activities for everyone to enjoy.  

88 Zion- One of Southern Utah’s amazing National Parks Zion has amazing rock formations and beautiful Canyon’s waiting to be explored.  This is a great place for hiking and canyoneering, or just going for a scenic drive. 

89 Bryce Canyon- The spectacular hoodoo formations of Bryce Canyon National Park are well worth the trip to another of Southern Utah’s amazing destinations.  The park is located at a higher elevation so it’s a great place to get away from the summer heat and there are some great trails below the rim is you really want to get out and explore. 

90 Grand Staircase Escalante- Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument straddles the border of Northern Arizona and Southern Utah.  This little known land of rock, canyon’s and wilderness is a must see for the more adventurous traveler and a place you can really get out and explore. 

91 Capitol Reef- Head past Bryce Canyon and the Grand Staircase on Highway 12 and you’ll come to Capitol Reef National Park.  This is yet another amazing Southern Utah park with more amazing rock formations and outdoor adventures to enjoy. 

92 Lake Powell- Lake Powell is a well know boating destination with a very picturesque backdrop of colorful cliffs.  Although fishing and houseboats are among the more popular activities Glen Canyon National Recreation Area which Lake Powell is located within also has some great hiking, kayaking and history. 

93 Rainbow Bridge- A massive natural bridge, Rainbow Bridge located on the edge of Lake Powell on the Navajo Indian Reservation.  It is usually accessed via boat and a short hike. 

94 Antelope Canyon-  One of the most beautiful and easily accessible slot canyons in the world Antelope Canyon is located near Lake Powell on the Navajo Indian Reservation and well worth the trip is you’re in the area. 

95 Horseshoe Bend-This aptly named viewpoint of the Colorado River is near Page, AZ and well worth the short detour of highway 89. 

96 Monument Valley- In the far northern reaches of Arizona on the Navajo Indian Reservation is a land of deep red natural stone monuments towering high into the sky alongside ancient and modern Native American heritage. 

97 Vermilion Cliffs- Located in between Grand Canyon’s North and South Rim’s above Marble Canyon are the spectacular Vermillion Cliffs.  This is a great place to explore, fish, hike and access the Colorado River. 

98 Petrified Forest- Another aptly named National Park, Petrified Forest near flagstaff Arizona is full of petrified trees as well as some colorful desert landscapes. 

99 Lake Mead-The Grand Canyon ends at Grand Wash Cliffs where the Colorado River flows into Lake Mead National Recreation Area.  This is a great oasis in a dry and colorless landscape where you can fish, hike, or go for a swim. 

100 Walnut Canyon- A short drive from Flagstaff Arizona is Walnut Canyon National Monument.  This is a great little monument and the closest place to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon to see a large area of Ancestral Puebloan Cliff Dwellings. 

101 Wupatki and Sunset Crater-  Also a short drive from Flagstaff, Wupatki and Sunset Crater are actually two National Monuments consisting of some awesome archeological sites, as well as volcanic cinder cones and lava flows.  

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