The canyon is contained within and managed by Grand Canyon National Park, the Hualapai Tribal Nation, the Havasupai Tribe and the Navajo Nation. The Grand Canyon National Park is the United States’ 15th oldest national park and was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979. Although first afforded Federal protection in 1893 as a Forest Reserve and later as a National Monument, it did not achieve National Park status until 1919, three years after the creation of the National Park Service.
Viewpoints include Mather Point, Yavapai Observation Station and architect Mary Colter’s Lookout Studio and her Desert View Watchtower. Lipan Point, with wide views of the canyon and Colorado River, is a popular, especially at sunrise and sunset.
Weather in the Grand Canyon varies according to elevation. The forested rims are high enough to receive winter snowfall, but along the Colorado River in the Inner Gorge, temperatures are similar to those found in Tucson and other low elevation desert locations in Arizona.
Although usually very clear, at times, the air quality can be considerably affected by events such as forest fires and dust storms in the Southwest. Luckily the air quality was fine as was the weather during our visit.
We were fortunate during our visit, we stayed inside the park itself at one of the several hotels and cabins available to visitors. Some of closest to the rim are: The Yavari Lodge, a simple cabin style offers East and West accommodations. El Tovar Hotel, also inside the park, offers more elegant charm and surroundings with a log lodge feel. Bright Angel Lodge & Cabins offer a more contemporary feel.
There is a railway inside the canyon as well as mule rides down the steep trails of the canyon to reach the bottom and the other side. If you’re brave you might want to try it!
There are also free buses you can ride from one viewing area of the canyon to another.
Regardless of the length of your visit to the Grand Canyon, whether you stay right in the park, spend a couple days or visit for just a day, you will leave with a sense of wonder. Most definitely a dream vacation location to enjoy, right here in the USA.