About 4.5 million annual visitors venture to the southern rim of the Grand Canyon National Park. The numbers continue to impress: visitors come to peer into a 1.6-kilometre-deep abyss, where the Colorado River rushes through rocks that date back 1.8 billion years.
A day-long hike down the Bright Angel or South Kaibab trails affords visitors ample opportunity to appreciate the rugged sandstone surfaces, but nearly 40,000 people every year opt to extend their journey overnight and rest up for the challenging ascent. Still, even those who remain at the rim can soak up the sweeping desert plateaus, which become even more stunning as the sun goes down.
Circumnavigate the Grand Canyon by taking a tour around its edges. You can tour the canyon on two wheels on a mountain bike – two popular trails are the Hermit Road and Greenway Trails.
Alternatively, take an open-top Jeep tour where a professional driver will guide you through the Grand Canyon National Park, whisking you to an array of different viewpoints. You could also take part in the famous Grand Canyon tradition of taking a mule ride from Grand Canyon Village down the Bright Angel Trail.
Let’s not forget the endless hiking trails – there are kilometres of caves to explore and over 1,500 unique plants to discover. The most popular track as mentioned before is the Bright Angel Trail; a comfortable and safe two-day trip encompassing just over 30 kilometres.
Last but not least, why not try rafting in the canyon? Exploring the Colorado River is a unique and exciting way to get to know Arizona’s great natural wonder. Motorised and oar-powered rafting trips are available, with motorised trips taking around six to eight days and oar-powered typically 10 to 14 days.