havasu fallsGRAND CANYON

Havasu Falls Grand Canyon

Havasu Falls Grand Canyon

Havasu Falls is one of four major waterfalls in Havasu Canyon located on the Havasupai Indian Reservation, west of Grand Canyon National Park. These waterfalls are world famous for their beautiful turquoise color and Havasupai actually means ‘people of the blue green water.’  The Havasupai Tribe is the only group of Native Americans who still live inside Grand Canyon, and their home is one of the most amazing destinations in the world. The waterfalls of Havasupai are one of the Grand Canyon's most unique and amazing destinations.

Many national park visitors do not know about Havasu Falls. The waterfalls of Havasu Canyon rival any tropical paradise in the world, and they are truly an anomaly in the desert southwest. The water from Havasu Creek that spills over these magnificent falls eventually makes its way to the Colorado River. Havasu is world-renowned for the unique color of its water, a captivating blue-green that is the result of high levels of travertine, a type of limestone.  Travertine is also responsible for the myriad pools all along the creek and at the base of the falls, which make excellent swimming holes. Read the guide below to learn more.

Havasu Falls Travel Guide

While it is a strenuous hike, Havasu Falls offers year-round adventure for all types of people. Families, experienced hikers, and novices can experience the magic of Havasu with some advanced trip planning. The weather from March through November is best, but winter trips offer the most solitude. The most popular option is hiking in to Havasu (with pack mules to carry your gear) and camping at beautiful Havasu Campground. You can also acquire transport via helicopter for an additional fee and if camping under the stars is not your cup of tea, the Lodge is a quick two-mile hike from the falls.

You get to Havasu Falls by heading west on Historic Route 66 from Seligman, Arizona or east on Route 66 from Peach Springs, AZ and then taking Indian Route 18, a 60-mile dirt road that dead ends at Hualapai Hilltop (the Havasu Falls trailhead). From the trailhead, it is an 8-mile, downhill hike to Supai Village (where the tribe resides), and another 2 miles to Havasu Falls and the campground. This beautiful hike can be done with or without the assistance of pack mules and you must book a campground or pack mule permit online before you can hike in. There are also limited first come, first serve helicopter flights from Hualapai Hilltop to Supai Village. It is important to know that if the helicopter can't fly you must be prepared to hike out on your own since accommodations are limited and may not be available.

Camping Permits and Reservations

Making a campground or pack mule reservation

  • All reservations for the campground and pack mules must now be made online at the official Havasupai Reservations website. They no longer accept phone calls for these reservations, even to check for last minute cancellations.
  • Reservations always sell out fast. All 2019 reservations were made available on the website on February 1, 2019 at 8:00am.
  • All campground reservations are made per person, per night and are for 3 night/4 days.
  • With the required 3 night/4 day reservation, it will cost between $300 and $375 per person to camp.
  • No, it is a "camp wherever you want" campground running for over a mile on both sides of Havasu Creek between Havasu Falls and Mooney Fall. This means there are no assigned camping sites and you are welcome to set up camp anywhere within the campground area that is safe and respectful of the land and your fellow campers.

Pack Mules and Mule Rides to Havasupai

  • Pack Mules are $400 round trip and one pack mule can carry 4 bags (bags can be up to 32 pounds each). Mules will not carry ice chests/coolers.
  • The Havasupai Tribe no longer offers mules rides in and out of Havasu Canyon; they transport gear only, not people. Your only non-hiking option is to ride the first come, first serve helicopter.
  • If you want to learn more about Grand Canyon mules rides, check out our page on guided mule rides.

Maps and Directions

The hike or flight to Havasu Falls starts at Hualapai Hilltop. To learn more about getting to Hualapai Hilltop check out our Havasu Falls Maps and Directions page to get information on the best way to travel to Havasupai from various nearby cities.

Hualapai Hilltop

Hualapai Hilltop is the trailhead for all hikers heading to Havasu Falls and is also where helicopters fly in and out of Supai Village. This part of the Grand Canyon’s West Rim is not as scenic as other areas so you might not have the same jaw-dropping impression at this dusty trailhead that you have at other Grand Canyon destinations. This is one of those trips where it is more about the destination than the journey. Along the trail, shortly before you reach Supai Village, you'll get your first glimpse of the blue green waters of Havasu Creek. 

Supai Village

Supai Village is home to the Havasupai Tribe, and you'll see homes, horses, a post office, a café, and a store. This is also the location of the permit office where hikers need to check in before heading to the campground below Havasu Falls. If you have a Lodge reservation, it is located in Supai Village.

There are no roads to Supai and everything is either carried down by pack mules or via helicopter. Provisions are both sparse and pricey, so don't plan on stocking up on gear and food for your trip here. You should definitely bring both a credit card and cash in case you need anything or just want to buy a cold drink in the middle of a hot day.

The Waterfalls

When you leave Supai Village the scenery starts to change quickly, and it's a flat 2-mile hike to the campground and Havasu Falls. As you follow the trail out of Supai Village it won't be long until you reach your first Havasu Canyon waterfalls. After the flood of 2008, Havasu Canyon went through some major changes. Two new waterfalls were formed from the flood, 50 Foot Falls and New Navajo Falls (the original Navajo Falls is no longer around). These are the first major waterfalls you'll see before you reach Havasu Falls. Below Havasu is the campground which stretches for about a mile until you reach the next major waterfall, Mooney Falls. Mooney Falls is the tallest waterfall in Havasu Canyon and the end of the developed area. From the top of Mooney Falls there is a steep climb (that involves using chains drilled into the canyon walls) to got to the base of the waterfall. From there, you can continue hiking to the least visited waterfall of Havasu Canyon, Beaver Falls. Below Beaver Falls Havasu Creek continues on its long journey to the Colorado River.

Weather and Conditions

Starting from the West Rim at Hualapai Hilltop and traveling to Supai Village and Havasu Falls in the inner Grand Canyon you'll experience quite a bit of variation in weather. The Grand Canyon also has very different conditions depending on which season you travel to Havasu Falls. Make sure you're prepared for your trip by learning more about Havasu Falls weather before you travel.

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Havasu Falls Services

The Havsuapai Tribe has a map of Supai Village including the services that they offer. In Supai Village you will find a post office, store, café, lodge, Tourist Office and clinic. You won’t find much more than postcards for purchase at the Store. Regardless, you should bring a credit card and some cash in case you need to buy extra food or something that you forgot.

For more nearby shopping options, go to our Grand Canyon Shopping page.

There are many more services on the canyon’s rim and you can find them on our Grand Canyon Services page.

Havasupai Lodge

Havasupai Lodge is the only lodging at the bottom of Havasu Canyon. Reservations sell out fast and must be made as soon as they are available {All 2020 Lodge reservations were made available on June 1, 2019 at 8:00am}. Unlike the campground, all Lodge reservations must be made over the phone by calling (928) 448-2111 or (928) 448-2201. You cannot reserve Lodge rooms online.

Most Havasu Falls hikers choose to stay in a nearby hotel in either Peach Springs, AZ or Seligman, AZ the nights before and after their trip. To find the best hotels, check out our West Rim hotels and lodging page.

Supai Restaurants

The only restaurant at Havasu Falls is the Café in Supai Village. The Café is open from 8am-5pm and sells basic diner food like eggs and toast and burgers and fries. Try the Indian Taco, which is served on fry bread. Cash, credit and debit cards accepted. 

The Store is open 7am-5:30pm, Monday-Friday, and 8am- 5pm Saturday & Sunday. They carry basic food items such as sodas, fruit, canned goods, meat, and bread. They also have travel size toiletries. Expect to pay more for items than you would at home since they account for the unusual transportation costs in their prices. Cash, credit and debit cards accepted. 

To find the best restaurant options on the rim, go to our Grand Canyon Restaurants page.

Havasu Falls Guided Tours

In 2019, the Havasupai Tribe stopped allowing guided trips onto Reservation land. In the past, many people chose to take a guided trip because of the difficult logistics of Havasu Falls trip planning.

But don’t let this stop you from visiting the beautiful turquoise waterfalls of Havasu Canyon! Grand Canyon Guru has all of the trip planning information you need, whether you want to hike, ride a helicopter, stay in a hotel, or camp next to the waterfalls. On our site, you’ll find all of the information you need to plan out all of the necessary logistics, so you are prepared for the adventure of a lifetime! If you want to learn more about guided tours in the canyon, check out our Grand Canyon Tours page.

Havasupai Tribe

The Havasupai people of world-renowned Havasu Falls have lived in the Grand Canyon for over 800 years. Arriving circa 1300 AD, the Havasupai are known for being the only permanent, continuous inhabitants of Grand Canyon. You can learn more about The Havasupai Tribe here.

Remember that you are a visitor on the Havasupai’s sacred homeland, and you must follow their rules and regulations, including:

  • No alcohol
  • No drugs
  • No drones
  • No weapons
  • No rock climbing
  • No jumping
  • No diving
  • No nudity
  • Appropriate clothing is required throughout the Reservation

Havasu Falls FAQs

Not sure where to begin planning your trip to Havasu Falls? Doing some planning before your trip will help ensure you have a safe and enjoyable experience. Check out our comprehensive FAQs below to find everything you need to know to have the adventure of a lifetime!

Location

Where is Havasu Falls located?

Havasu Falls is located in the western part of Grand Canyon, about 60 miles north of Peach Springs, Arizona.

Is Havasu Falls in Grand Canyon National Park?

Havasu Falls is on the Havasupai Reservation and is in the Grand Canyon but is not part of Grand Canyon National Park.

How do I get to Havasu Falls?

All trips into Supai and the Havasu Falls area start at the Hualupai Hilltop trailhead on the Havasupai Reservation. You access the trailhead off of Old Route 66 by driving about 60 miles down Indian Route 18. Indian Route 18 is unpaved but is usually kept in good condition for regular passenger vehicles.

Once I’m at Hualupai Hilltop (the trailhead) how do I get into the canyon?

From the Havasu Falls trailhead you can hike or take a helicopter. There are no guaranteed helicopter rides and all visitors staying at the Lodge or campground must make a reservation beforehand.

Camping Permits & Pack Mules Reservations

How do I make a campground or pack mule reservation?

All reservations for the campground and pack mules must now be made online at the official Havasupai Reservations website. They no longer accept phone calls for these reservations, even to check for last minute cancellations.

How far in advance should I make my campground or pack mule reservation?

Reservations always sell out fast. All 2019 reservations were made available on the website on February 1, 2019 at 8:00am.

What is the minimum stay for a campground reservation?

All campground reservations are made per person, per night and are for 3 night/4 days.

How much does it cost to camp?

With the required 3 night/4 day reservation, it will cost between $300 and $375 per person to camp.

Does my campground reservation include a designated campsite?

No, it is a "camp wherever you want" campground running for over a mile on both sides of Havasu Creek between Havasu Falls and Mooney Fall. This means there are no assigned camping sites and you are welcome to set up camp anywhere within the campground area that is safe and respectful of the land and your fellow campers.

I would prefer to not carry my camping gear. How much is a pack mule?

Mules are $400 round trip and one pack mule can carry 4 bags (bags can be up to 32 pounds each). Mules will not carry ice chests/coolers.

I prefer not to hike and want to ride a mule instead. How do I make a reservation?

The Havasupai Tribe no longer offers mules rides in and out of Havasu Canyon; they transport gear only, not people. Your only non-hiking option is to ride the first come, first serve helicopter.

Helicopter Filghts to Havasupai

I’m not up for the adventure of hiking to Havasu Falls. How do I make a helicopter reservation?

The helicopter company (AirWest) does not fly every day and is first come, first serve only. Tribal members always have priority so regardless of when you get in line you might have to wait for hours, if you get a ride at all. Because of this, it is essential that you are prepared for the possibility that you might have to hike both into and out of the canyon, if needed.

Where does the helicopter drop you off?

The helicopter lands in Supai Village so you will still need to hike the last two miles to the waterfalls.

How much does the helicopter cost?

It is $85 each way and includes one bag up to 40lbs.

Havasupai Lodging

I’m not into camping.  Is there a hotel at Havasu Falls?

Yes, there is one small Lodge in Supai Village, two miles from Havasu Falls.

How do I make a reservation for the Lodge?

Unlike the campground, all Lodge reservations must be made over the phone by calling (928) 448-2111 or (928) 448-2201. You cannot reserve Lodge rooms online.

How far in advance should I make my Lodge reservation?

Rooms sell out fast. All 2020 Lodge reservations were made available on June 1, 2019 at 8:00am.

How much does it cost to stay in the Lodge?

Rooms are $440 per room, per night and can accommodate up to 4 people per room. In addition, there is a $100 entrance/environmental fee per person, as well as a $100 deposit per room, per night.

Where will I eat when I stay at the Lodge?

The only options for food in Supai Village are the Store or the Café. The Store sells cold drinks, ice cream, fruit and canned goods. The café is open from 8am-5pm and sells basic diner food like eggs and toast and burgers and fries. People enjoy the Indian Taco, which is served on fry bread.

Where should I stay the night before and after my trip to Havasu?

Since it is recommended that you start your hike (or get in line for the helicopter) by 7:30am at the latest, most people choose to stay in the closest hotels to the trailhead. You’ll find basic hotels in Peach Springs, AZ (1 hr from trailhead) and Seligman, AZ (1hr 20min from trailhead).

Hiking to Havasu Falls

How far is the hike into Havasu Falls?

It is 8 miles from Hualupai Hilltop to the village of Supai (where the Lodge is located) and the campground and waterfalls are an additional 2 miles from Supai.

Is the hike difficult?

While thousands of people do the hike every year, it is a strenuous hike that is made much more difficult because of the remote desert conditions of the trail. Temperatures can soar to 115 degrees during the heat of the day so it is important to hike early, carry and drink plenty of water, and to know your limits.

I would like to do Havasu Falls as a long day hike. Can I do that?

No. Hiking anywhere on the Havasupai Reservation is by permit only and hiking permits are only issued with an existing campground or Lodge reservation. You may not hike into the canyon for a day hike.

Since the trailhead is remote, where should I stay the night before and after my trip to Havasu?

Since it is recommended that you hit the trail by 7:30am at the latest, most people choose to stay close by so they can get an early start. You’ll find basic hotels in both Peach Springs, AZ (1 hr from trailhed) and Seligman, AZ (1hr 20mins from trailhead).

The Waterfalls of Havasu Canyon

How tall is Havasu Falls?

About 100 feet tall

Are there other waterfalls?

Yes, there are several other turquoise waterfalls nearby including New Navajo Falls, Fifty Foot Falls, Mooney Falls and Beaver Falls.

Why are the waterfalls turquoise?

The waters that feed the falls come from underground springs that include high levels of dissolved magnesium and calcium. As the water percolates through the local limestone, it becomes saturated with precipitated calcium carbonate (also found in chalk, snail shells and eggshells). Together, the magnesium, calcium, and calcium carbonate reflect sunlight in such a way that it creates the brilliant turquoise color. The white limestone rocks that line the creek amplify the color and make it appear even brighter.

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