Two Great Destinations, One Great Experience McDowell Sonoron Preserve Grand Canyon West Rim
Tonto National Forest
Grand Canyon West Rim

CLOSE BY - WORLDS AWAY

The Grand Canyon is one of the most iconic locations in America. Every year, more than 4 million visitors stand on her precipitous rim to marvel at nature's artistry. You can do the same on your next trip to Scottsdale! The Grand Canyon's South Rim is a smooth 3 1/2 hour drive north of Scottsdale, which makes it easy to go from city life to remote relaxation on a full-day or leisurely overnight trip. Looking for a quicker way to get there? Air tours depart from Scottsdale Airport and provide plenty of time to explore the Canyon rim and still be back in Scottsdale in time for dinner. Scottsdale's lush Sonoran Desert and the Grand Canyon's water- and wind-carved geologic formations' is a magical combination you won't want to miss!

Scottsdale the Destination

Scottsdale

The Magical Sonoran Desert

Scottsdale’s sun-drenched Sonoran Desert setting provides a rugged and breathtaking backdrop for the city’s posh resorts and spas, championship golf courses, and vibrant arts, dining and nightlife scenes.
Scottsdale Stay in Style

Room with a View

Accommodations in Scottsdale run the gamut from five-star luxury resorts in the scenic Sonoran Desert foothills to chic boutique hotels in the heart of the city's vibrant downtown. You'll also find romantic hideaways ideal for two, a luxurious downtown B&B, and family-friendly options that will maximize your travel budget. No matter what your style or budget, Scottsdale has the ideal accommodations for you!

 

Scottsdale Play Outdoors

Play Outdoors

Scottsdale's McDowell Sonoran Preserve boasts more than 100 miles of trails for hiking, biking and horseback riding. Hot air balloon flights, seaplane adventures and guided tours by Jeep, Hummer and horseback provide spectacular desert views. And eight nearby lakes and rivers are perfect for fishing, rafting and water sports.
Scottsdale Wildife

Check out the Wildlife

The Sonoran Desert is the lushest, most biologically diverse desert in North America. Thousands of species of plants and animals thrive in the desert's warm, dry climate, including the giant saguaro cactus, lacy mesquite trees, coyotes, javelina (collared peccaries), Gambel's quail, mule deer, bobcats and hummingbirds.
Scottsdale Photo Ops

Photo Ops

Scottsdale's stunning Sonoran Desert setting is a photographer's dream of vivid seasonal blossoms, unusual cacti and towering mountains. During the late summer monsoon, billowing clouds glow during Technicolor sunsets. And you'll also find plenty of photo ops in the city, from public art installations and distinctive architecture to sun-dappled parks and public gardens.
Sedona the Destination

GRAND CANYON

America's Natural Wonder

Considered by some to be one of the world's Seven Natural Wonders, the Grand Canyon is an outdoor enthusiast's paradise of stunning scenic views, miles of pristine trails and tour options by helicopter, river raft and shuttle bus.
Grand Canyon Stay in Style

Room With a View

The historic El Tovar hotel, rustic lodges and cozy campgrounds are among your lodging options at the Grand Canyon's popular South Rim. On the more secluded North Rim, choose from camp grounds or the Grand Canyon Lodge (both seasonal). And for hearty souls that hike to the Canyon floor, there are three rustic campgrounds as well as Phantom Ranch, which offers cabins and dormitory-style rooms.

 

Grand Canyon Play Outdoors

Play Outdoors

For breathtaking views, take a walk along the well-defined and mostly level Rim Trail, which is accessible from any viewpoint in Grand Canyon Village. Feeling more adventurous? Try a day hike into or around the canyon or sign up for a helicopter tour. Mule trips and river rafting are other popular Canyon adventure options.
Check out Grand Canyon Wildlife

Check out the Wildlife

Five of North America's seven life zones are represented at the Grand Canyon and provide habitats for hundreds of species of birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians. Antelope, elk, bighorn sheep, bald and golden eagles, coyotes, bobcats, and black bears are just some of the local residents you might see in the park.
Grand Canyon Photo Ops

Photo Ops

The Grand Canyon provides breathtaking photo ops at practically every turn. Established viewpoints on both rims are natural choices because they are on points of land that jut out into the canyon. Favorite viewpoints include Lipan, Hopi, Mather and Powell Memorial on the South Rim and Cape Royal and Point Imperial on the North Rim.

Driving With the Pros

Professional ground tour operators offer fun and easy day trips from Scottsdale to the Grand Canyon's South Rim. Luxury vans, professional drivers and expert guides will take you from place to place while you sit back, relax and enjoy the scenery.
Prescott North Scottsdale Phoenix SCOTTSDALE SOUTH RIM SOUTH RIM 180 Sedona GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK NORTH RIM NORTH RIM Flagstaff Kingman WEST / SKYWALK WEST / SKYWALK SOUTH RIM NORTH RIM WEST / SKYWALK GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK 93 89 89A 89A 89A 179 89 64 64 89 89A 67 69 101 51 101 202 10 17 17 17 17 40 40

DIY (Drive it Yourself)

The roads connecting Scottsdale and the Grand Canyon are smooth, open and easy to navigate. All Driving distances and times are approximate.

NORTH RIM
101 North > 17 North > 89 North > 89A West > 67 South
Approx Drive Time: 5 h 19 min
Approx Distance: 316 miles

SOUTH RIM
101 North > 17 North > 40 West > 64 North > 180 North
Approx Drive Time: 3 h 34 min
Approx Distance: 238 miles

WEST / SKYWALK
101 North > 69 North > 89 North > 450 West > 93 West >Stockton Hill Rd > Diamond Bar Rd > Airport Service Rd.
Approx Drive Time: 5 h 17 min
Approx Distance: 316 miles

*Rest stops, gas stations and convenience stores are available along I-17.

 


Things to do Along the Way

If you have some time to spare, there are several fascinating things to see along the way to the Grand Canyon's South and North rims.

Sunset Crater (20 miles north of Flagstaff on US-89)

Roughly 900 years ago, the eruption of this now-dormant volcano reshaped the surrounding landscape. Hike the trail through the hardened lava flow and cinders to see colorful geological features.

Flagstaff Extreme Adventure Course (exit 337 from I-17)

This elevated obstacle course offers an exciting tree-top experience for the whole family (ages 7 and up). Course features include suspended bridges, swings, slides and zip lines.

Wupatki National Monument (6 miles north of Flagstaff on US-89)

The ancient pueblo ruins at Wupatki have been home to numerous groups of people over thousands of years. An easy, self-guided trail will take you past several ruins as well as the blowhole, a fascinating geologic feature.

San Francisco Peaks (14 miles north of Flagstaff on US-180)

Located seven miles north of Flagstaff, the San Francisco Peaks range is home to Humphreys Peak, the tallest mountain in Arizona. There are a variety of hiking trails in the area that offer excellent views of the peaks, meadows and surrounding forest.