People all over the globe are aware of the sinful paradise called Las Vegas and the natural beauty of a majestic stretch of land known as the Grand Canyon, but few realize that the contrasting regions are only a few hundred miles away from one another. While each certainly stands alone as a magnet for vacationers and thrill-seekers all over the world, visiting both in one trip is a rare chance to blend the awe-inspiring bounties of nature and topography with the bold and impressive drive of mankind and modern commerce. Here are the available options for folks looking to travel from Sin City to the Grand Canyon National Park.
Massive expanses of desert terrain separates Las Vegas from the Grand Canyon, and highways are few and far between. No direct route exists, but one popular option is to take Interstate 15 up through the northwest corner of Arizona and into the state of Utah until you get to the town of Washington. At that point you’ll begin to weave south down Highway 389 until you trek back into Arizona and reach a turnoff for Mount Trumble Road. You will find yourself in the midst of the Grand Canyon National Park after a 20 mile jaunt on a narrow unpaved road that jets through the middle of hundreds of square miles of dry flats.
Drivers also have the option of taking the southern route, which involves Highway 93 and Interstate 40. Provided that you have ample gasoline, water and stimulation such as the conversation of a good friend or the soothing sounds of your favourite band, either drive can be quite enjoyable.
A bevy of companies offer all-inclusive tours of the Grand Canyon that originate and end in Las Vegas and can be experienced over the course of one day. Many large and lavish buses shuttle hundreds of folks who have gotten their fill of casino games toward the Grand Canyon each and every day. As a passenger, you will be able to soak up the sights, sounds and smells of the surrounding land without the hassle or worry of following speed limits or directions. Cameras can be taken out and used at your leisure, and the 5-hour ride won’t seem long at all.
People who don’t care about spending a few extra dollars as much as they care about saving precious time can book a flight from Las Vegas to Flagstaff, Arizona, which often takes less than an hour from gate to gate. Flagstaff is the closest commercial airport to the Grand Canyon, and a car ride of about an hour is required in order to access Grand Canyon Village, which is the epicentre of the region’s commerce and activity. For people who like their vacations packed full of as many locations and fun as possible, a flight to and from Flagstaff and several hours of exploring the Grand Canyon can actually be wedged into one long day.
Image credits: Grand Canyon NPS,
John is a travel writer currently working on a new Las Vegas travel site which will contain lots of ideas for things to do in and around Las Vegas.