Learn more about Grand Canyon Village
The hub of action in Grand Canyon Village is the Grand Canyon Visitor Center Plaza, which is the first stop for most visitors coming from the South Entrance/Tusayan. The Visitor Centers features educational exhibits and the park’s free movie and there are always rangers on staff to answer questions and give advice. Also in the plaza you will find a Grand Canyon Association Park Store (gift shop) and Bright Angel Bicycles where you rent a bike on your own or join a two-wheeled tour of the canyon rim. The Shuttle Bus Plaza is also here and you can catch the Village/Blue Route, Kaibab Rim/Orange Route, or Tusayan/Purple Route every 15-30 minutes, depending on time of day. The famous Mather Point Overlook is a short 10-minute walk from the Plaza.
The two Grand Canyon hiking trails in this area are popular and crowded, but for good reason: they are the only two “maintained” trails on the South Rim which means that they offer better footing and more forgiving, switch-backed grades. The Bright Angel Trail starts in the historic Grand Canyon Village area and is popular because it has seasonal water bottle filling stations every 1.5 miles as well as shaded rest stops. The South Kaibab Trail, however, offers better views than the Bright Angel but its hot, exposed trail and lack of water stations make it more challenging on hot summer days. On both trails you might have to stop and give way to some of the most famous Grand Canyon celebrities, the mules, as they haul visitors and supplies between the rim and Phantom Ranch.
Guru Tips for Exploring Grand Canyon Village
Grand Canyon Village offers hotels, tours, restaurants, visitor centers and more right at your finger tips. Here’s a couple tips for visiting Grand Canyon Village and the South Rim.
Reserve your hotel or campground in advance
- Lodging in Grand Canyon Village and the South Rim can be booked up a year or more in advance. Check out our South Rim Hotels guide to learn more or make reservations.
- For car camping reservations at Mather Campground near Grand Canyon Village go to recreation.gov. If the campsites you want are booked, we love Campnab to help find reservations at sold-out campgrounds.
Book a tour or ticket before you get to the canyon
- A guided tour is a great way to really experience the Grand Canyon and having a reservation means you won't have to worry about finding activities when your on vacation.
- Learn more about tours with our complete list of Grand Canyon Guided Tours.
More tips for visiting Grand Canyon Village
- It always a good idea to have travel insurance for your trip. Check out rates and get travel insurance before you head to the canyon.
- If you need more booking options for hotels, rental cars, flights, tours and tickets just check out our Grand Canyon reservations page.
- Take a look at our featured tour and recommended Grand Canyon Village lodging below and check out our shuttles guide to help you navigate the canyon and find the best services and attractions.