Grand Canyon Getaway: an All-American Road Trip From Vegas

Visiting the Grand Canyon is a memory you’ll never forget
Visiting the Grand Canyon is a memory you’ll never forget | © Marianne A. Campolongo / Alamy Stock Photo
Lucy Thackray

Head out on the highway and hit up the Grand Canyon – one of the seven natural wonders of the world – with scenic tours and a stylish Wild West hotel.

With national parks and a natural wonder nearby, Las Vegas couldn’t be better suited for an all-American road trip.

“Vegas is uniquely positioned – within one day, you can visit so many different parts of the country,” says Steve Jones of local supercar experience Dream Racing. “You can be in urban LA or at the beach in Malibu within four hours; along the way, you could stop in Joshua Tree or Palm Springs to soak up the desert lifestyle. Or head about six hours north to the mountainscapes and redwood forests of Yosemite and Sequoia National Parks.”

However, at the top of most hit lists is the Grand Canyon, a two-and-a-half-hour drive through Wild West scenery from Sin City – assuming you don’t stop (frequently) at one of many natural beauties along the way. Here, set yourself up in a chic little Arizonan inn – packed with Americana charm – and take yourself to heart-lifting hiking spots and dramatic canyon safaris along the way, all bookable right here on Culture Trip.

 Few sights in the world are as spectacular as the Grand Canyon |
 The South Rim is the most popular viewpoint for first-time visitors |
 The Bright Angel Trail offers amazing vistas over the canyon |

Where to Stay: the Hotel…

1. Little America Hotel

Resort, Hotel

Courtesy of Little America Hotel / Expedia
Drawing on the russet-and-stone palette of the desert landscape, pepped up with textiles and prints inspired by 12,000 years of local Native American culture, Little America Hotel is a rustic-chic treat of a stay. Family friendly but stylish enough for couples traveling alone, it’s just off Interstate 40 in Flagstaff, Arizona – a hub of adventurous excursions and handily located for iconic drives, including Route 66. Snuggle down in cozy suites with sofas and fireplaces, or chill by the pool before setting off on hikes or drives through the nearby Kaibab National Forest and Grand Canyon National Park (each within a 90-minute drive). You’re also neatly placed for day trips to and from Wild West hotspots Sedona and Phoenix.

What to Do: the Experiences…

2. South Kaibab Day Hike Tour

Tours

Rainbow-striped rock in shades of olive, rust and ochre, plunging cliffs and stacked rock formations – the South Rim of the Grand Canyon is home to most of those much-photographed viewpoints of which you’ve been dreaming, and this hiking excursion takes you along the South Kaibab Trail to some of the most dizzying spots. It’s not hard to see how Ooh Aah Point got the name, but the favorite picnic patch on this tour, gazing down to the Colorado River, is pretty special too.

3. Off-Road Sunset Safari

Activities, Tours

Nevada, Arizona, Utah and Colorado are some of the most scenic states to put the pedal to the metal, and all are centered around the inimitable Grand Canyon. “One of my favorite driving routes is up through Utah, to Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon, then into Colorado, through the Rockies to Denver,” says Steve Jones. “You can then head south and loop around via the Grand Canyon.” If you want to be shuttled around the latter in style, consider this sunset safari in a specially converted vehicle with big panoramic windows.

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