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  1. Default North vs South Rim

    hey guys - i'm new here! planning a 4 week trip - chicago to west coast and back trip. very overwhelmed by the choices in the national parks - reading a ton!

    right now i'm working on the grand canyon. should we stay/ visit the north or south rim? we're (son 13, daughter 10) not huge hikers but want to see what we can - safely! i see the north gets much less visitors -

    also- after GC, we're off to Vegas via Hoover Dam. Looks like an easier drive from the south rim.

    i'm toying with the idea of going to north rim for a nite (we'll be coming from Page, AZ) then going to S rim before heading to Vegas.

    i would love any feedback and advice as to the above - also - how long should we allow at Hoover Dam??

    thanks so much!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Welcome!

    Welcome to the RoadTrip America Forum!

    With its higher elevation, the area surrounding the North Rim of the Grand Canyon has a different feel than the South Rim. Since the North Rim is harder to get to, less visitors travel there. However, that isn't to say that the views aren't as spectacular.

    Having four weeks gives you time to visit both, though if you are looking for other things to do in the area that are easy to get to, the South Rim and its proximity to Flagstaff would win out.

  3. Default

    thanks - are entire trip is four weeks - we'll be in the grand canyon area about 3 nites. we're doing a rafting trip out of Page, AZ very early one AM then going to the Grand Canyon, where we plan on 2 more nites. Any particular recommendations for where to stay and where to go - giving the fact we're really not experienced hikers?

    thanks again!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default As Always

    The best advice for hikes that will meet your needs and style will be gotten from the park rangers at the visitor centers. They know their park far better than anyone else, and will have the latest information on any trail closures. But in general, the Rim Trail on the south rim is relatively easy and spectacular, and you can take any of the trails down into the for as far as you're comfortable with. Just remember, you'll have to hike out.


  5. Default

    thanks - i'm looking to make a room reservation at either the north or the south rim - so i'm trying to learn which may be best for our situation. then once we decide on a place we'll figure out where to hike, etc. does one side have more activities than the other?

    i'm just looking for opinion as to who likes which rim and why - also recommendations on where to stay.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default differences

    Tim has already summed up the differences between the two sides, after that, it really just depends upon what you are looking for.

    If you are looking for activities, then the South Rim will probably be your better bet. The south rim sees far more tourist, and has far more services to cater to those travelers. It also has more lodging choices, both inside the park, just outside the park, and in towns like Flagstaff and Williams a longer drive away.

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

    Default Hoover dam ?

    If the Hoover dam is a must on your list and you are not planning on stopping overnight between G/C and Vegas then I would opt for South rim as travelling from the North rim to Vegas and stopping at the Dam would be a very long day.
    If the Dam wasn't a priority then you can get to Vegas via I-15 from the North rim and then you could consider spending a night in Zion NP which is also a pretty incredible place.

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