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Las Vegas to Grand Canyon Road Trip - The Ultimate Guide in 2022

What to Expect on Your Road Trip to Arizona

A road trip is a journey that allows you to explore a wide range of tourist attractions along the way.

Road trips have become increasingly popular in America since the COVID-19 pandemic has seen a downward trend. A recent Priceline Survey by OnePoll revealed that nine in 10 Americans have taken a road trip at least once in the past year.

There are several popular road trips you can journey along in the USA. Among them is the Las Vegas to Grand Canyon road trip.

The distance between Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon is 274.8 miles. It is a 4.5-hour drive strip if you don’t stop anywhere in between. However, we all know that is not what a road trip is.

You want to stop at popular tourist spots, enjoy delicious food, embark on hike trails, shop for your favorite items, and learn more about the history of each tourist spot.

In this article, we’ll provide an in-depth overview of these top 10 tourist spots and activities you can do or attractions you can visit at each tourist spot.

Your Road Trip from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon

Here is the list of the top ten tourist spots you absolutely cannot miss during your road trip between Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon (the list is in order from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon):

  1. Lake Mead

  2. Hoover Dam

  3. Kingman

  4. Route 66

  5. Seligman

  6. Williams

  7. Flagstaff

  8. Kaibab National Forest

  9. Tusayan

  10. South Rim

If you follow a route like the one outlined below, you’re sure to hit all the spots! 


1. Lake Mead

Lake Mead, a reservoir formed by the Hoover Dam and Colorado River, is located 24 miles east of Las Vegas. The largest reservoir in the country in terms of the water capacity, Lake Mead serves the drinking water needs of around 20 million people across the states, including Arizona, California, Nevada, and a few parts of Mexico.

The main places to visit at Lake Mead are:

  • Recreational Activities: Boating is the primary recreational activity at Lake Mead. You can also enjoy swimming, sunbathing, camping, kayaking, water skiing, and fishing at the lake.

  • Alan Bible Botanical Garden: This tourist hot spot is a desert botanical garden covered with cactus, desert trees, and shrubs.

  • Hiking Trails: There are over 13 hike trails around Lake Mead. These trails provide breathtaking views of Lakeshore, North Shore, and Lake Mohave.

2. Hoover Dam

The Hoover Dam is a concrete arch-gravity dam constructed on the Colorado River between 1931 and 1936. It is located near Boulder City, Nevada. You may need to travel around 30 miles southwest of Las Vegas to reach the dam. Over a million tourists visit the Hoover Dam every year.

The main activities you can do at the Hoover Dam include:

  • Kayaking: Many tourists take the Las Vegas kayak tour of Hoover Dam to explore the natural areas of Las Vegas.

  • Guided dam tour: This helps you learn more about the dam's history. The minimum age requirement for the guided tour is eight years.

  • Cross the memorial bridge: Mike O’Callaghan-Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge is another engineering marvel that connects the dam on the Nevada and Colorado sides. Visiting the bridge will be a thrilling experience for first-time visitors.

Other attractions you should not miss when you visit the Hoover Dam are Eagle Point and Grand Canyon Skywalk.

3. Kingman

Kingman is a city located along Route 66 in Arizona. It is the common stop for tourists traveling from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon. With over 60 famous restaurants, Kingman offers a wide variety of food options. Many restaurants offer homemade root beet, including the famous Mr. D’z Route 66 Diner.

The main tourist attractions at Kingman are:

  • The Arizona Route 66 Museum: Visiting Route 66 Museum can be a great experience as it features photos and stories of Dust Bowl survivors.

  • Route 66 map: It is the world’s longest route map painted onto the side of the El Trovatore Motel.

4. Route 66

U.S. Route 66, also known as Will Rogers Highway or the Mother Road, was established in 1926. Starting in Chicago, it covers several states and cities, including Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona.

On your Las Vegas to Grand Canyon road trip, you will enter Route 66 at Kingman and take the exit 165 toward AZ-64 to reach Grand Canyon. You can take a halt at cities such as Seligman, Williams, and Flagstaff along Route 66, as they have several tourist attractions, restaurants, and gift shops.

5. Seligman

Seligman is a census-designated place located on the historic Route 66. Seligman is particularly popular for gift shops and restaurants.

The main tourist attractions at Seligman include:

  • Return to the 50s: It is a little shop that sells memorabilia from the '50s and Route 66 souvenirs at an affordable price.

  • Rt 66 Hippie Cricket: It is another quirky shop that sells gifts, collectibles, jewelry, clothes, and antique products. If you are interested in hand-crafted items, you should not miss Rt 66 Hippie Cricket.

  • Angel & Vilma Delgadillo's Route 66 Gift Shop & Visitor's Center: It is a one-stop platform where you can find a museum, visitor center, barbershop, and gift shop.

6. Williams

Williams is one of the major tourist cities in Arizona. It is home to numerous restaurants, motels, gas stations, and inns to cater to the needs of both domestic and international tourists. The inflow of tourists would be high during the summer and long weekends.

The main tourist attractions you’ll find at Williams are:

  • Bearizona Wildlife Park: It is a wildlife and conservational park that enables you to have a glimpse of animals like bison, antelopes, black bears, and mountain goats.

  • NightLife and Gift Shops: The city comes alive at night with many original neon signs and busy streets. You can find numerous gift shops along Route 66 in Williams.

  • Grand Canyon Deer Farm: If you are traveling with the family, you should not miss Grand Canyon Deer Farm, which gives a glimpse of various animals, including deers, peacocks, bison, wallabies, and Llamas.

7. Flagstaff

Flagstaff is an attractive tourist destination in Northern Arizona. It is located just over 30 miles East of Williams. This city is surrounded by mountains, pine forests, and deserts.  

The main tourist attractions at  Flagstaff are:

  • Walnut Canyon National Monument: If you are looking for a hiking spot along Route 66, Walnut Canyon National Monument could be a perfect choice.

  • Arizona Snowbowl:  If you are traveling through Flagstaff in winter, you should not miss Arizona Snowbowl. Whether you are a beginner or an expert in skiing, you will enjoy the best skiing experience ever at Arizona Snowbowl. 

  • Flagstaff Extreme: It is a treetop adventure course that provides a thrilling experience to tourists. Suspended bridges, slides, swings, and ziplines between Ponderosa Pines will allow you to climb, balance, and walk through the trees.

8. Kaibab National Forest

Kaibab National Forest shares its borders with both the north and south rims of the Grand Canyon. This forest, spread across 1.6 million acres, is a recreational tourist hub. It allows you to do several activities, including snow playing, fishing, camping, and hiking.

The main tourist attractions at  Kaibab National Park are:

  • Grand Canyon North Rim: This is yet another hiking trail for travelers during the Las Vegas to Grand Canyon road trip. Typically a less crowded area, the north rim enables you to completely view the Canyon. Avoid hiking the north rim during peak winters because the snow will completely cover the scenic spots.

  • Bright Angel Point: Bright Angel Point is a short hiking trail that covers a distance of about 0.8-kilometer round-trip walk. It offers spectacular views and steep sections, which provide a thrilling experience to visitors. Avoid taking this trail when there are thunderstorms and lightning.

9. Tusayan

Tusayan is another census-designated place located in Arizona. It is located just two miles away from the south entrance of the Grand Canyon National Park. It is the last stop on the road trip from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon. Two routes, including Route 180 coming from Flagstaff and Route 64 coming from Williams, travel through Tusayan and help you reach the Grand Canyon.

The main tourist attractions at Tusayan are:

  • Hermit Trail: A beautiful hiking trail, it offers several spectacular views of the Grand Canyon. It may take around one and a half hours to go to the top and come back. Take the Hermit Trail early in the morning to avoid the crowd and enjoy a pleasant climate.

  • Grand Canyon Jeep Tours and Safaris: Don't miss taking Jeep Tours and Safaris if you visit Tusayan. Operated by Grand Canyon’s Original Jeep Company, these guided off-road tours provide spectacular views from Yavapai Point, Pipe Creek Canyon, and Duck on a Rock Overlook.

Other attractions at Tusayan include Mather Point, Maverick Helicopters, Hualapai Road, and Grand Canyon Skydive. 

10. South Rim

The south rim of the Grand Canyon has several breathtaking hiking trails, restaurants, and viewpoints. It is open for tourists throughout the year, 24/7. If you are looking for a national park experience with all amenities and visitor services, you should not miss the south rim of the Grand Canyon. Shuttle buses are available to give you an immersive bus tour experience of the South Rim. 

The main tourist attractions at Grand Canyon South Rim are:

  • Grand Canyon Visitors Center: The visitor center has several gift shops, a museum, and restaurants. You can rent bikes here to ride around the south rim of the Grand Canyon.

  • Grand Canyon IMAX: Located at the south rim entrance, this IMAX theater tells some hidden truths about the Grand Canyon in about 34 minutes. If you want to learn more about the Grand Canyon Village, this would be the best opportunity.

Other attractions at South Rim are Desert View WatchTower, Grand Canyon West Rim, Grand Canyon Railway, Lookout Studio, Rim Trail, and Helicopter Tours.

Start Your Road Trip to Grand Canyon National Park by Renting with AVR

The road trip from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon will be a thrilling experience irrespective of whether you are traveling with your family or friends. Don’t forget to stop at various recreation areas, hiking trails, gift shops, restaurants, state parks, national parks, natural wonders, and museums along the way, and make the most out of your road trip. 

Never miss the experience of shining casinos and the view of the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area on the Las Vegas strip. You can also visit Zion National Park, Monument Valley, Bryce Canyon, and Peach Springs during this road trip if you have time.

Around 59% of Americans prefer renting a car for their road trips because they don’t want to put the mileage on their cars. Moreover, they want to enjoy the convenience and fun ride offered by convertibles. 

Airport Van Rental (AVR) is an American leading car rental company that offers different types of vehicles, including SUVs, convertibles, minivans, and passenger vans for road trips. It has over 12 years of experience in renting vehicles for family vacations, weekend getaways, and road trips. With over a dozen rental locations coast to coast, AVR increases the convenience for you to pick up and drop off the vehicle. 

Book a rental car with AVR for your Las Vegas to Grand Canyon road trip at an affordable price. 

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