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  1. Default North Rim, South Rim, Sedona in a week?

    I am just beginning to research visiting the Canyon in October 08. Would it be too ambitious to consider starting at the North Rim, going to the South Rim, then visiting Sedona in a week? Where would be the best place to fly in and out of if I did this plan? Also would you prefer Zion or Sedona-for scenery.
    Thanks! Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default How Long a Week?

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    I think that I'd be hesitant to try this if I really only had 7 days and needed two of them to fly to/from my home/destination. But if I had a week plus a long weekend (fly in on a Saturday and out on a Sunday, then it might actually be enjoyable. You have a choice (assuming you don't want to pay the leg on top of the arm) of two places to fly into to make this trip work, Phoenix and Las Vegas. For the sake of argument, let's assume Phoenix. You could then drive up to Sedona and take a day hiking around the Red Rock Country and then drive up through Oak Creek Canyon to Flagstaff for the night. That would set you up for a drive into the South Rim of the Canyon. It is pretty much another full days's drive (209 miles) to go from the South Rim to the North Rim, then yet another full day to get to Zion and sample what it has to offer. Your fifth driving/sight seeing day would take you down to Las Vegas by way of the Valley of Fire and Lake Mead, and a sixth day to get from Las Vegas back to Phoenix over Hoover Dam and maybe seeing some of the old Route 66 around Kingman. So six days minimum, not counting flying days. But those are relatively easy days, maybe half a day on the road, half a day hiking around enjoying the scenery.


  3. Default North Rim, South Rim, Sedona in a week?

    Thanks AZ Buck! This sounds definitely do-able. Will this schedule give me enough time at each location to see everything and not feel stressed trying to do too much? A day at each location is amble time to see what we need to? If
    Thanks again very much!

  4. Default One more question!

    Is it worth going to both the south and north rim? Thanks!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula

    Default Yes and yes!

    AZBuck's suggested itinerary should work out just fine for seeing everything without feeling rushed if you have the six days he recommends.

    Phoenix-Sedona: 115 mi
    Sedona-Flagstaff: 30 mi
    Flagstaff-South Rim: 85 mi
    South Rim-North Rim: 209 mi
    North Rim-Zion: 78 mi
    Zion-Vegas: 161 mi
    Vegas-Phoenix: 294 mi

    This map should help you visualize this better.

    You can see that most days, you're driving is very minimal. But even on the days when you drive more, the miles are low. Many of us do about 500 miles/day on our trips and still have time for some stops and exploration so you will have plenty of time to do things even on the longer days. And the drive itself is taking you through some of the most amazing scenery!! So the driving will be very enjoyable.

    The views and perspective from the South Rim is very different from the North Rim. Yes, I think that everyone should see it from both sides.

    If you can get lodging in or as near to the South Rim, North Rim, and Zion as possible, you will be all set for a terrific trip!

  6. Default If you had a choice

    Okay I've narrowed it down to either fly into Vegas, to Zion, to South Rim, then Sedona
    or Vegas, Hoover Dam/Mead, South Rim, Sedona ---I'd like to make it a more relaxing trip and not spending most of our time in the car (yet see the best sites). We only have 8 days an two of those are generally travel days.,
    If I were to the Hoover Dam route, I just wondered if the Dam/Mead area is someplace we'd just "drive thru" or if you stay there then move onto the South Rim. Your mileage and map helped out a lot, that's why I decided to not fly out of Vegas but fly out of Phoenix. Thanks
    I'm finding this planning much more difficult than i thought not knowing the area and knowing there's a chance I might not be back!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.


    if i had a choice,it would definately be the first one and try and find time to visit bryce canyon after zion,both are amazing places,and if your not sure if you can revisit then zion is a must in my opinion.i'd say the dam is a drive through place with maybe an hour or 2 stop but at the moment theres a lot of construction work going on and it gets very busy.

  8. Default If you had a choice

    thanks! When looking at the pictures, Zion looks amazing! I think this is the route I need to do. This is such a wonderful, helpful website, I thank all who have helped me!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula

    Default My choice

    Love Zion. Love Bryce. Of the two, I'd go to Bryce first. That place is hauntingly beautiful. (Zion is cool, too, but in a different way.) I just think Bryce is more unique.

    Hope this doesn't throw a wrench in your planning, Kathy! Sometimes when time is a factor, you just have to go with your gut or flip a coin when it's time to narrow down your choices. But I still think with 6 days to roadtrip, that you can find time to do both.

    Bryce can be done quickly if you don't do any hiking and just enjoy the sights from the overlooks. We had limited time there. I think it took us about 3 hours to do all the overlooks, a couple of very short hikes, and a stop at the visitor center. It's about 90 miles from Zion to Bryce, so figure about 1-3/4 hours travel time one way. This could be a daytrip from Zion area, for example. You won't find a cooler place to stay than Ruby's Inn.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    The Netherlands


    Hi Kathy
    Don't know what dates in october you are coming but north rim will be closed from oct. 15. In 8 days you can make a loop Las Vegas-Las Vegas or start Las Vegas, make a loop and end in Phoenix or in reverse. This probably will add drop off charges, Carrental tend to be cheaper in Las Vegas. I would not advice to visit both north and south rim. South rim is better accessible with more overlooks and far more lodging. Make your reservations asa possible at North rim is gorgeous as well though but there are many more places worth a visit.
    This is a often traveled itinerary:
    Day 1: Arrive Las Vegas. Stay Las Vegas
    Day 2: Las Vegas to GCNP south rim. It's a 5 hours drive without stops but is can be busy at Hoover Dam. With a short stop at Hoover Dam, count on 6 hours. Parking at the Az side is free.
    Day 3:Take all day for GCNP. Try a hotel at the rim. 4 hotels right there: El Tovar, Kacina, Thunderbird and Bright Angel. Close to the rim are Maswik and Yavapai. If all booked try Tusayan at the south entrance for lodging. Unfortunately the shuttle to Hermits rest (west rim) will not be in action till december this year.
    Day 4: See east rim and esp. the Watchtower at Desert View. Drive to Cameron for some food and shopping. Then drive to Page and visit Antelope Canyon. The sunbeams won't reach the canyonfloor after oct. 7 anymore but it's still a great place. Also in Page is Glen Canyon Dam. As impressive as Hoover Dam and with better views imo. And a tour is free. The direct non stop drive from GC Village to Page is 3 hours the most.
    Day 5: Visit to Horseshoe bend overlook just south of Page first. Park your car at the lot and walk to the rim app. 20 minutes one way. Fantastic views on Colorado River. Be careful, no fence. You also can do this the day before. Then drive to Bryce via us89 and Kanab. Stop at Red Canyon on ut12 just before Bryce. Spend the rest of the day in Bryce. Page-Bryce app. is 3 hours.
    Stay Bryce for the night. Ruby's Inn is an option. It's just outside the entrance.
    Day 6: Drive from Bryce to Zion early in the morning and visit Zion. Bryce-Zion is 2 hours if no delays at the tunnel. Just before the tunnel is a short trail (Canyon Overlook Trail) with great views and an easy walk. In Zion take the shuttle and make a loop. No cars allowed in Zion Canyon in summer.
    Day 7: Drive to Las Vegas, visiting Valley of Fire SP on your way and enter Las vegas via North Shore Drive more or less along Lake Mead. Directly from Zion to Las Vegas takes 3 hours but you'll gain one hour because of time difference. (You'll lose that hour between Page and Bryce. Az does not observe daylight saving time.)
    Day 8: Home, planning your next trip
    Many more options like Sedona and Monument Valley but time.... If you decide to make it a one way trip (LV-Phx-Phx-LV) please let us know and we can provide you with another route. Some more driving times: Phoenix-Sedona is 2 hours. Sedona-GC Village: 2.5 hours. Las Vegas-Phoenix 5-6 hours and not a very scenic drive. You also can do this loop in reverse of course.
    Happy planning

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