Visit one of the world’s most incredible natural wonders: the Grand Canyon. More than 277 miles long, 18 miles wide, and one mile deep this landscape offers so much beauty 🤯. The Grand Canyon, in Arizona, gets over 4 million visitors a year! Read below how the ultimate one day Grand Canyon itinerary.
There are two separate portions of the park: the North Rim and the South Rim. The North Rim is closed for a majority of the year, only has three major viewpoints, and is a smaller park, so most visitors go to the South Rim. I have focused this day on the South Rim.
You could spend many days in the Grand Canyon hiking, rafting the Colorado River, and exploring, but you can see plenty of the park in a short amount of time. However, I have been to the Grand Canyon three times. Each time has been a day trip and I have felt completely satisfied. Below you will find my suggested schedule for one day in the park.
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Table of Contents
One Day Grand Canyon Itinerary
Sunrise Over the Park
Get up early to avoid the crowds and watch a magical sunrise over the canyon 🌄. There’s nothing better than watching the colors reflect and transform. It’s a spectacle that you will not want to miss! If you want to get further away from people, you can walk away from a lookout point. Find your own secluded spot to witness the show.
Best Places to Watch Sunrise:
Trek down the Canyon Walls
There is no better way to see the canyon, then to go on a hike 🥾. Luckily, there are many great hikes that you can fit in your one day Grand Canyon adventure! You will get to see it from a different perspective. Just remember, most hikes begin by going down, and hiking back up the canyon is no joke!
While you can walk all the way down to the bottom of the canyon, they recommend that you don’t go down and up in one day. You’ll see plenty of signs warning against this along the hike. If you hike all the way down, you should find a spot to camp for the night. For any hike, remember that it can get extremely hot, so bring your sunscreen 🧴, hat 🧢, sunglasses 🕶, and plenty of water 💦!
Best Day Hikes in the Grand Canyon:
- Skeleton Point Trail (6 miles)
- Bright Angel Trail (8.2 miles) – You can stop and turn around earlier!
- Kaibab Trail (3 miles to Cedar Ridge)– Ooh Ahh Point is a great stopping point!
- Rim Trail (12.3) – The Rim trail is a flat walkway that runs along the majority of the canyon’s rim, so you can do as little or as much as you’d like
Drive & Stop at Scenic Overlooks
One of the best parts of the park is its accessibility. You can easily drive through, park at the scenic lookouts, and take in the amazing scenery. If you only have a short period of time this is perfect. You can spend your time taking in the scenery at these stops. I loved seeing the canyon from all of the different angles. You could stop and stare at this natural wonder for hours!
Admire the Sunset
If you only have time for one thing, then make sure you get to watch a sunset 🌅.. The best place in the park to watch a sunset is Hopi Point. In order to get to Hopi Point, you have to take the red shuttle from Bright Angel Lodge.
Once you get to the point, you will probably see a lot of other people there. Walk a little bit away and you can find a nice, secluded spot. As the sun goes down, the rocks transform from orange to red to purple. It’s truly astounding. This was my favorite part of our trip into the park and you should not miss it!
Looking out at the Grand Canyon is awe-inspiring and it makes you appreciate the true beauty of planet earth. Everyone should go there at least once in their life to see this vast wonder.
Let me know if you found this itinerary helpful in the comments!
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