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Overview

The Colorado River has carved the Grand Canyon, a masterpiece that stretches 277 river miles across northern Arizona. Rock layers exposed in the great chasm, up to 18 miles wide and a mile deep, tell a geologic story that began more than a billion years ago. Most visitors head first for Grand Canyon Village on the South Rim. Here you'll find the easy Rim Trail, two scenic drives, historic architecture, places to stay and eat, and, of course, spectacular views. Across the canyon lies Bright Angel Point on the North Rim, 1,400 feet higher and a five-hour, 215-mile drive away. A scenic drive on the North Rim leads to other dramatic ...

The Colorado River has carved the Grand Canyon, a masterpiece that stretches 277 river miles across northern Arizona. Rock layers exposed in the great chasm, up to 18 miles wide and a mile deep, tell a geologic story that began more than a billion years ago. Most visitors head first for Grand Canyon Village on the South Rim. Here you'll find the easy Rim Trail, two scenic drives, historic architecture, places to stay and eat, and, of course, spectacular views. Across the canyon lies Bright Angel Point on the North Rim, 1,400 feet higher and a five-hour, 215-mile drive away. A scenic drive on the North Rim leads to other dramatic viewpoints, all very different from those on the South Rim.

Adventurous drivers with a taste for lonely back roads will enjoy a trip to Toroweap, also on the North Rim, but here the cliffs plunge in a single sheer drop all the way to the river. To experience the inner canyon worlds, head down a trail or sign up for a river rafting expedition. Not all of the Grand Canyon lies within its namesake park — you can also venture into the canyon along the blue-green waters within the Havasupai Indian Reservation or admire views of the lower Grand Canyon in the Hualapai Indian Reservation.

Bill Weir
About the Expert

Bill Weir is the author of Moon Handbooks on Arizona, Utah and the Grand Canyon.

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Bill Weir for Triporati

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Now Happening in Grand Canyon

Facts at a Glance

  • Location: The Grand Canyon is a steep-sided canyon carved by the Colorado River in the state of Arizona. It is considered one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is one of the great tourist attractions in the USA.
  • Research: Grand Canyon | Wikitravel
  • Weather: Rainfall | Daylight
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Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    All year for the South Rim; late spring to early fall for the North Rim