Good morning travelers, or should I say, “and the beat goes on!” Seems as though our TripAdvisor friend ‘daruwala’ (“And Yet Another Las Vegas to Grand Canyon Question“) is now seriously considering the panel’s recommendation to stay overnight at the Grand Canyon, but he/she is still a bit dubious as to whether there will be enough to do at Grand Canyon National Park to occupy their 6- and 8- year old kids. So ‘daruwala’ posted another query, eloquently titled “A Dumb Question:”
So we are staying in Las Vegas. Planning a day trip to Grand Canyon. From the forum, it seems like an overnight stay is recommended at the park. Now here is the question: if we decide to stay a night at Grand Canyon National Park, what is there to do? Sounds like a loaded Grand Canyon question! There are 4 adults and 2 kids (6 & 8) in our party. We are all scared of heights, will not go on the Grand Canyon tour, no Grand Canyon rafting tours for us…you get the idea. I want to see the park, take some nice pics from a distance. Stay with a day trip? How about this: leave LV at 6am. Arrive at park 12 noon. Spend 3 hours. Leave by 3-4pm.
‘dez40,’ the Destination Expert for Zion National Park and a frequent Grand Canyon forum contributor opines:
The best time to see the Grand Canyon is sunset and sunrise. And the dark night skies are great for seeing stars. Full moons are awesome too. Given the option of staying overnight, not sure why you would want to drive 9-10 hours round trip just to see the canyon for a few hours and a quick look.
Here’s a snippet of my own response to ‘daruwala:’
With all due respect if you do this: <<leave LV at 6am. Arrive at park 12 noon. Spend 3 hours. Leave by 3-4pm>> you might as well just take a Las Vegas Grand Canyon bus tour. Aside from a few variances in timeframe, that’s pretty much what they do: drive to the park, maybe a little photo stop at Hoover Dam, lunch on the way, about 3 hours in the park then turn around and head back. Enough to get a small taste of the views at Grand Canyon, but a very small one. … If you’re still open to spending the night, I strongly recommend you do so!
Indeed, my sentiments were re-affirmed by ‘josh71:’
Another recommendation for an overnight. We were at the Grand Canyon in June with 6 and 8 year old kids, and there’s definitely plenty to occupy you for an afternoon and morning. Within the park, everything from the Junior Ranger program (highly recommended) to ranger talks, to a short walk down the Bright Angel or South Kaibab Trail. I’m not a fan of heights, but was okay on these trails…with a tight grip on the 6yo’s hand 🙂
I was so glad to see this gentleman post because not only had he traveled to the Grand Canyon with kids the same age as ‘daruwala,’ he had some great recommendations for things they could do:
One thing that was recommended to us was to be at the Bright Angel Corral before 8am to watch the Grand Canyon mule riders mount and start their descent. We didn’t make it, because we hiked down South Kaibab trail to Ooh Aah point after sunrise, and didn’t get back quite in time. Desert View Drive and the watchtower, the Visitor Centers, the Hermit’s Rest shuttles, walking along the rim near the village, eating a picnic meal or ice cream behind the lodges; all of those can fill 2 partial days and more. We didn’t get to the IMAX theater for “Grand Canyon: The Hidden Secrets,” but I hear that’s really good also.
So hopefully ‘daruwala’ is reassured that their kids won’t get bored. Now what he/she needs to do is book a Grand Canyon hotel since their visit is right around the corner and rooms fill up fast.
One more thought and we’ll wrap this up: folks, please please please please please don’t ever be afraid to ask any Grand Canyon question at all! Yes, chances are we’ve heard yours before, but I promise you we won’t roll our eyes and sigh heavily at the prospect of repeating a particular fact for the 100,000th time. Hey you never know: your Grand Canyon question might be a real stumper [and we may publish it here :)] We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: “the only dumb Grand Canyon questions are the ones that never get asked!” The point is that the happiest Grand Canyon traveler is the one who is best informed, and that is invariably the kind of person who isn’t afraid to ask those off-the-wall Grand Canyon questions. Besides, remember what your elementary school teacher said about the word “assume?” Break it down and it means “make an @ss of u and me!”
’til next time, make this day a “grand” one!