Many people stop off at Grand Canyon for an hour or two, then hop back in their bus and head back to Vegas.  That will definitely give you a chance to see the canyon, but it’s worth spending at least several days, if you can, to fully enjoy the canyon and surrounding area.   

If you’re not sure what to do at the Grand Canyon, this guide is for you. It features all the best things to do at Grand Canyon South Rim (arguably the best side of Grand Canyon National Park, and the most popular by far) – and some at the West Rim, too. 

No time to read about the best things to do in Grand Canyon South Rim now?  Pin It and save it for later: 

30 Epic Things to Do Grand Canyon National Park
Best Things To Do in Grand Canyon National Park

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Best Things To Do in Grand Canyon

Things To Do At The South Rim, Grand Canyon  

First up, let’s look at things to do around South Rim, Grand Canyon.  

1. Take a Tour

Grand Canyon from helicopter Grand Canyon

What is the best way to see the Grand Canyon?  For many people, it’s to travel there independently. 

If you are planning to visit Grand Canyon National Park by yourself, make your planning easy and stress free with a detailed itinerary. I have 1-, 2-, and 3-day itineraries for the South Rim of Grand Canyon that include all the park highlights, give you choices based on your preferred activity level, and take all the stress out of planning your trip. 

Check out the three Grand Canyon itinerary options

However, for many others, the best way to see Grand Canyon National Park is is on a tour.  These have the advantage of being easier to arrange and having an expert guide with you at all times. 

Here are a some of the best tours of Grand Canyon National Park. 

6-Hour Tour from Tusayan 

If you think that the best way to visit Grand Canyon National Park is with a guide, then this tour is for you. Visit all of the main viewpoints along the South Rim, with an expert guide to explain the history, geology and ecology of the canyon and national park.  It includes pickup from Tusayan and accommodations in Grand Canyon Village.  Maximum 9 people. 

>> BOOK A 6-HOUR TOUR FROM TUSAYAN OR GRAND CANYON VILLAGE 

10-Hour Private Tour of the West Rim From Las Vegas 

If you’re in Vegas and want to visit Grand Canyon at your own pace, then the best way to visit the Grand Canyon (West Rim) is on a private tour.  Whether you’re a solo traveler or couple, or have a group of friends and/ or family, they can accommodate you.  You’ll spend six hours at the Canyon.  It includes pickup from your Las Vegas hotel. 

>> BOOK A FULL-DAY PRIVATE GRAND CANYON TOUR FROM LAS VEGAS 

2-Day Tour of Grand Canyon and Route 66 from Las Vegas 

An overnight trip from Vegas will give you more time at the canyon.  One of the best tours of the Grand Canyon, this two-day tour includes an optional helicopter tour, plus time to visit several viewpoints and hike below the rim.  It also includes a photo stop at Hoover dam, a quick visit to the historic town of William, and a drive along part of legendary Route 66. 

>> BOOK AN OVERNIGHT 2-DAY GRAND CANYON TOUR FRM LAS VEGAS 

7-Day National Parks Tour from Las Vegas 

Take a small group tour from Las Vegas to Grand Canyon, Zion, Bryce, Arches, and Canyonlands National Parks as well as Monument Valley. Grand Canyon vacations packages don’t get much better this. 

>> BOOK A 7-DAY TRIP TO GRAND CANYON, 4 UTAH PARKS AND MONUMENT VALLEY 

Self-Guided Driving/Walking/ Shuttle Tour 

If you prefer to travel independently, but want some expert information about the major viewpoints and sites, then this downloadable app is the perfect solution.  It includes all the main viewpoints and trails. 

>> GET A DOWNLOADABLE SELF-GUIDED SOUTH RIM TOUR 


2. Enjoy the Views

Grandview Point Grand Canyon

The highlight of any trip to Grand Canyon is, for sure, the views.  Nothing can quite prepare for just how awe-inspiring and immense it is.  The views vary depending on where you are.  There are dozens of viewpoints along and below the south rim, and it is worth seeing the canyon from different vantage points. 

For all the best places to see Grand Canyon, read my guide to the Best Grand Canyon Viewpoints


3. Take a Hike 

1.5-mile bright-angel-trail grand canyon

One of the other best things to do at the Grand Canyon South Rim is to hike.  From an easy stroll along the rim, to a challenging overnight trek down to the Colorado River and back, there are several truly amazing hikes to do.  Highlights include: 

Rim Trail 

The Rim Trail is exactly that – a well-defined and easy, mostly flat, trail along a 13-mile stretch of the South Rim.  It starts at the South Kaibab Trailhead east of Grand Canyon Village and goes all the way to Hermit’s Rest west of Grand Canyon Village.  Most of the trail is paved and wheelchair accessible.  You can walk the entire length, but it is easy to hop on and off the shuttle bus and walk part(s) of the rim. 

Read more about the Rim Trail here 

Greenway along south rim Grand Canyon
Greenway on Grand Canyon’s South Rim

Bright Angel Trail 

This is the most famous and most popular trail from the South Rim down to Phantom Ranch at the bottom of the canyon.

To do the full 9.9 miles each way out-and-back hike, you should stay overnight in the canyon, either at a primitive campground or at Phantom Ranch.  However, you can hike half way as far and Indian Garden and back in a day. 

Other places to turn back sooner include a tunnel about 0.75 miles in, 1.5-mile Resthouse and 3-mile Resthouse. A slightly longer day hike (strenuous, but doable if you’re fit) is the side spur to Plateau Point, where you can see the Colorado River below. 

For a full trail description, tread my Guide to Hiking Bright Angel Trail

If you prefer not to hike alone, you can book a couple of guided hiking trips: 

Bright Angel Trail Guided Day Hike 

Hike with a guide to any of the turnaround points, depending on your comfort and fitness level. 

>> BOOK A GUIDED DAY HIKE ON BRIGHT ANGEL TRAIL HERE 

3-Day South Kaibab – Bright Angel Trail Guided Hike 

This 3-day guided trip includes the 2 main trails from the South Rim spread over three days.  It starts with a transfer from Scottsdale before you head down below the rim on the South Kaibab trail to the bottom of the canyon. 

The first night is spent camping at Bright Angel Campground.  The second day includes a hike up the first half of the Bright Angel Trail, with a side trip to Plateau Point, camping at Indian Garden, half way up the trail.  The third day is the second half of Bright Angel Trail and then a transfer back to Scottsdale. 

>> BOOK THIS AWESOME 3–DAY GUIDED RIM-TO-RIVER HIKE WITH CAMPING HERE 

South Kaibab Trail 

This is the other main trail from South Rim to the Colorado River.  The trail was blasted out of the canyon walls back in the 1920’s. At 7.1 miles each way, it is shorter, but also steeper, than Bright Angel Trail.  Popular turning back points for day hikers include Ooh Ahh Point (0.9 miles each way), Cedar Ridge (1.5 miles each way) and Skeleton Point (3 miles each way and the farthest point recommended for a day hike).   

If you plan to hike all the way to the river and overnight in the canyon, many people choose to hike down South Kaibab and up Bright Angel. 

There are several guided options for South Kaibab if you prefer to hike with a guide: 

Guided Day Hike on South Kaibab Trail 

Head down as far as Skeleton Point (or a shorter hike depending on your fitness level) with a guide who can explain the history and geology of the canyon along the way.  Includes lunch. 

>> BOOK A FULL-DAY GUIDED HIKE ON SOUTH KAIBAB TRAIL 

Day Tour Including Hike to Ooh Aah Point on South Kaibab Trail 

If you aren’t up for a full-day hike, but would like to experience the South Kaibab Trail, this tour is perfect for you.  It includes a guided hike down to Ooh Aah Point (1.8 miles return), then an afternoon spent visiting several viewpoints along the South Rim. 

>> BOOK A DAY SOUTH RIM TOUR INCLUDING HIKE TO OOH AAH POINT HERE 


4. See the Sunrise

Grand Canyon sunrise Grand Canyon
Sunrise Grand Canyon

The canyon is especially beautiful at sunrise.  See the sun peak over the top and then slowly bathe the canyon’s outcroppings in a gorgeous soft golden glow of early morning light.   

Some of the best spots to see the sunrise over Grand Canyon include Maricopa Point and Hopi Point along Hermit Road.   

What’s the best place to see sunrise at Grand Canyon South Rim? 

The most popular place to see the sunrise at Grand Canyon is Mather Point. It’s an outcropping with expansive views in all directions, so it gives you a great view of the sunrise and early morning views.  


5. Soak In the Sunset

Grand Canyon sunset Grand Canyon
Sunset Grand Canyon

The other best time to view the canyon is at Golden Hour (the hour before sunset), when the light is soft and glowing, and the sunset itself.   

What’s the best place to see sunset at Grand Canyon South Rim? 

The most popular place is also Mather Point.  However, this is also the most crowded and definitely not the only place to see the sunset. 

Other best sunset Grand Canyon spots include: 

  • Lookout Studio  
  • Hopi Point 
  • Yaki Point 
  • Yavapai Point / the Geology Museum 
  • Lipan Point 
  • Grandview Point 
  • Desert View Watch Tower 

Want to take a tour? 

Off-Road Sunset Safari to Sunset Spot

This tour leaves Tusayan 2 hours before sunset and enters the national park via a backroad entrance.  Stop off at Yavapai Point, Pipe Creek Canyon, and Duck on a Rock Overlook before ending up at the stunning Grandview Point to see the sunset. 

>> BOOK A 3-HOUR GRAND CANYON OFFROAD SUNSET TOUR 


6. Get On A Bike

Bicycles and shuttle Grand Canyon

One of the most fun things to do at the Grand Canyon National Park is to rent a bicycle and cycle along the South Rim, stopping off at viewpoints along the way.  Faster than walking, more convenient than the schedule and healthier than driving, it’s a great way to spend an hour or a day enjoying the canyon’s views.  

Bicycles and e-bikes are allowed on all paved and unpaved roads on the South Rim.  There are 13 miles of roads and Greenway Trails along the rim. You can hop on and off a shuttle bus at any of the stops (they take bicycles and e-bikes) so you don’t need to cycle the whole way.   

Highlights include the 7-mile Hermit Road and especially the Hermit Road Greenway Trail, a 2.8-mile bicycle path between Monument Creek Vista and Hermit’s Rest away from the road and, in some places, along the rim of Grand Canyon. In the other direction, there’s a paved Greenway Trail from the Visitor Center to the South Kaibab Trailhead. 

You can rent bicycles and e-bikes and book bicycle tours with Bright Angel Bicycles.


7. Take a Mule Ride

Mule Ride Grand Canyon

Since they were first offered in 1887, more than 600,000 people have taken a Grand Canyon mule ride and it remains one of the most fun things to do in Grand Canyon, Arizona. There are two types of trips.  One goes into the canyon along Bright Angel Trail, with an overnight stay at Phantom Ranch.  The other is a shorter Canyon Vista Rim Ride. 

The Canyon Vista ride is three hours (four miles), with two hours in the saddle.  You ride one hour through a ponderosa pine forest, spend an hour at a viewpoint overlooking the canyon, and then another hour riding back.  Wranglers accompany you and stop at least six times to provide information about the canyon’s geology, history, fire ecology, etc. 

If you’re not used to riding, two hours in the saddle is probably enough!  

There are age and weight restrictions.  Book a mule ride here.


8. Drive Desert View Drive

Tusayan Ruin Grand Canyon
Tusayan Ruins

Another of the top things to do in Grand Canyon National Park is Desert View Drive.  The 23-mile scenic drive extends from the East Entrance of the national park along the South Rim to Grand Canyon Village.  Along the way, there are six developed viewpoints (with parking), five unmarked pullouts, four picnic areas and the Tusayan Museum. 

Tusayan is the remains of a small Ancestral Puebloan village. A short 0.1-mile trail goes around the ruins.  There are interpretative signs explaining about the people who lived there.


9. Climb the Desert View Watchtower

Desert View Tower Grand Canyon

One of the premier Grand Canyon sightseeing spots, Desert View Watchtower is a four-story, 70-foot-tall stone tower.  There are stunning views of the canyon from the top. There are 85 steps. 

The tower was designed by Mary Colter in 1932 to resemble an Ancestral Puebloan watchtower.  The stone tower is built in what is designed to look like the rubble of old ruins.   

Inside, the main space is the Kiva Room, a large circular room with a (false) ceiling built from logs salvaged from the old Grandview Hotel, and with a fireplace and large picture window.  There is a shop inside the room these days. 

The watchtower isn’t the only thing at Desert View.  There’s a campground, large parking area, gas station, deli, bookstore, and a Trading Post selling Native American crafts, coffee and ice cream. 


10. Walk the Trail of Time

Trail of Time Grand Canyon

If you’re interested in geology and natural history, one of the best things to do in South Rim Grand Canyon is to walk the Trail of Time.  

The Trail of Time is an interpretive walking trail along the rim that’s designed to be a geologic timeline. In addition to providing frequent views of the canyon itself, each meter walked on the timeline trail signifies one million years of Grand Canyon’s geologic history. Along the timeline trail are a series of rocks and exhibits that explain how Grand Canyon and its rock formed. 

The Trail starts at Yavapai Geology Museum and goes back in time as you head towards Grand Canyon Village.  First up is the “Million Year Trail”, which transitions from human time scales to geologic ones. This is immediately followed by the main Trail of Time where each meter equals one million years of Grand Canyon’s geologic history. It’s 1.3 miles to Grand Canyon Village and then another 1.5 miles further long.  

The trail is paved, mostly flat, and wheelchair accessible.  

Guided Walking Tour of the Trail of Time 

While it’s possible to walk the Trail of Time on your own, reading the signs along the way, if you’d prefer to go with a guide to help explain it, then you can take a tour.  Start with a visit to the Yavapai Geology Museum before heading on the Trail of Time for a 2-hour guided walk.  It includes pickup and drop off in Tusayan and IMAX movie tickets. 

>> BOOK A GUIDED WALKING TOUR OF THE TRAIL OF TIME 


11. Rest at Hermit’s Rest

Hermits rest Fireplace Grand Canyon

Visiting Hermit’s Rest is another of the iconic things to do on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.  It lies at the end of Hermit Road and the western section of the Rim Trail. 

Designed by Mary Colter in 1914 to resemble an old miner’s cabin, it uses local stones and has a front porch.  The most impressive thing, though, is the enormous alcove fireplace – it’s big enough to stand inside.  

Today, there’s a giftshop and snack bar (open 9:00AM – 5:00PM), as well as restrooms and drinkable water to fill your water bottles.  It’s also the trailhead for the Hermit Trail.


12. Get Your Photo Taken

portrait grand Canyon Grand Canyon

What can you do at the Grand Canyon to keep your memories alive? If your trip to Grand Canyon National Park is for a special occasion, then having professional photos taken with the canyon as a backdrop is the perfect way to permanently capture the occasion.   

Book a professional photographer here. Rates vary by length of shoot/ how many photos you get.


Things to Do in Grand Canyon Village 

There is actually a lot to do in Grand Canyon National Park away from the canyon.  If you’re not sure what to do in Grand Canyon Village, here are some highlights. 

13. Explore the History Room

Geological Fireplace Bright Angel Lodge Grand Canyon

Bright Angel Lodge was designed by architect Mary Colter and built in 1935.  The History Room at Bright Angel Lodge is one of the most famous Grand Canyon attractions.  There are photos and other displays highlighting the history of the lodge and the canyon.   

The highlight, however, is the “Geologic Fireplace”, also designed by Mary Colter. The fireplace is built of rocks and stones from all of the major layers of the canyon. Starting with rocks from the Colorado River and culminating at the top with the youngest rocks from the canyon’s rim.


14. Learn Geology at the Geological Museum

Yavapai Geological Museum Grand Canyon

To learn more about the layers of the canyon and how it was formed, one of the best things to do at South Rim Grand Canyon is to visit the Yavapai Museum of Geology (formerly called the Yavapai Observation Station).  There are 3-D models, photos, artwork and a large topographic relief map, so you can learn all about the canyon’s creation.   

The museum is perched right on the edge of the canyon, and another highlight is the large picture window with stunning canyon views.  You can also look through viewfinders and spot Phantom Ranch at the bottom of the canyon. 

There’s also a gift shop.


15. Go Shopping at Hopi House

Hopi House Grand Canyon

For more things to do, Grand Canyon Village also has Hopi House – THE place for shopping.  It was designed by Mary Colter in 1905 to reflect the design of a Hopi Pueblo.  The rectangular shape and multiple roofs are stepped at various levels to give the impression of Puebloan architecture from the outside.  Inside, small wall niches, corner fireplaces, and a mud-plaster wall finish are all typical of Hopi interiors. 

It was designed to house the sales rooms for Fred Harvey Indian Arts and it is still one of the best places to buy Native American art.  It’s open 9:00AM – 5:00PM.


16. Relax on the porch of the El Tovar hotel

El Tovar Grand Canyon

Possibly the best place to see Grand Canyon and the views is from the porch of the El Tovar Hotel.  El Tovar is the grandest of the Grand Canyon National Park lodges and is often considered the finest of the historic national park lodges.   

The hotel was built in 1905 for the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railway and was owned and operated by the famous Fred Harvey Company.  Inside are rustic Oregon pine log beams, native stonework and plush furniture, but the back porch, with views of Grand Canyon, is hard to beat. 

If you want to stay there, you can book a room at the El Tovar here


17. Dine in the Grand Dining Room at the El Tovar

El Tovar Hotel Grand Canyon

The El Tovar isn’t just about accommodations and the porch.  Like many of the classic national park inns and lodges, the grand dining room is spectacular, and having lunch or dinner there is another of the best things to do. Grand Canyon South Rim ‘s premier lodge has murals on the walls depicting the customs of the Hopi, the Apache, the Mojave and the Navajo people.  

You don’t need to be a guest to dine there, but reservations are required for lunch and dinner and can be made up to 30-days in advance for non-guests and further out if you have an accommodation booking. 


18. Discover Kolb Studio

Kolb Studio Grand Canyon

Also perched on the edge of the canyon, at the start of the Bright Angel Trail, Kolb Studio is another of the national historic landmarks in Grand Canyon Village.  It was built in 1904 by the Kolb brothers as a home, photography studio, and theater for their slideshows and films.  It was the first permanent commercial photographers’ studio at the canyon and one of the earliest commercial tourist businesses there. 

Today, there’s an art gallery, bookstore and information booth operated by the Grand Canyon Conservancy inside the historic building. There are also great views of Grand Canyon from the studio.


19. Look Out Over the Canyon at Lookout Studio

Lookout Studio Grand Canyon

Designed by – you guessed it – Mary Colter, this studio dates from 1914 and is built from local limestone to blend in with the canyon.  Even back then, one of the most popular things to do on South Rim of Grand Canyon was to gaze at and photograph the views.  Which is why Colter designed the building as a place from which to view and photograph the canyon.   

The views here are amazing.  There are several small terraces on different levels, so you can take a photo of your friends or family from above, with the canyon behind and below.  You can also clearly see Bright Angel’s Trail’s switchbacks zigzagging down into the canyon.


20. Step back in Time at Grand Canyon Railway Depot

Grand Canyon Depot

Built in 1920, the Grand Canyon Depot is a National Historic Landmark and another of the many Grand Canyon tourist attractions. 

This was NOT designed by Mary Colter!  The two-story log and wood-frame building was designed by Californian architect Francis W. Wilson to serve as the main station for the Grand Canyon and it still serves that function today.  There were only ever 14 log railway depots built in the United States, and this is one of only three still standing.


Best Things To Do in Grand Canyon 

If you’re up for the adventure, I recommend heading below the canyon’s rim.  In addition to the hikes described above, some of the other best things to do in the Grand Canyon are: 

21. Stay Overnight at Phantom Ranch

Phantom Ranch Lodge Grand Canyon

Phantom Ranch is the only (non-camping) lodging inside the canyon itself and staying there is one of the most unique things to do in the Grand Canyon.  Accommodations aren’t fancy – there are hiker dorms and rustic cabins with bunk beds, set amongst trees. 

There’s a large central hall for dining, plus a small shop and post office.  Meals are family-style with shared tables. There are free ranger-led activities in the Grand Canyon including afternoon and evening talks and story-telling. 

To get there, you’ll either need to hike, take a river trip, or ride a mule. 

Phantom Ranch is extremely popular and beds are limited, so there is a lottery system to make a reservation – 15 months in advance.  Read my Guide to Phantom Ranch Reservations for more information. 


22. Ride the River Rapids

tiny boat surrounded by towering cliffs of grand canyon on river rafting trip through grand canyon

If you’ve done the South Rim and are wondering what to do in the Grand Canyon now, then why not ride the river rapids through the canyon? 

There is no greater thrill than navigating multiple rapids and there is no greater way to really get a feel for the canyon as you see all of the layers up close.  You’ll also see parts of the canyon that can only be visited from the river, do hikes into side canyons, and camp on sandy beaches overnight. 

There are multi-day trips through the upper canyon and lower canyon, or both.  One-day trips are also available in the western canyon.  You can take a motorized raft (faster and smoother), a traditional whitewater raft, or even a wooden dory and traverse the river like the early western explorers did.  

Read my Guide to Grand Canyon River for more details.

One-Day White Water Rafting Grand Canyon Trip 

If you don’t have time for a multi-day trip, then can still experience the thrill of rafting through Grand Canyon. A one-day trip includes 40 miles on the river through the Western Canyon and a side trip to a beautiful travertine waterfall.   

>> BOOK A ONE-DAY GRAND CANYON WHITE-WATER RAFTING TRIP 


What to Do Around the Grand Canyon 

If you’re looking for something to do away from the rim and aren’t sure what to do around Grand Canyon National Park besides the rim and below the rim, then read on. Whether you’re looking for something easy to do or looking for adventure activities, Grand Canyon National Park has something for you.   

23. Take The Train

Grand Canyon Train Grand Canyon

If you have just on day, the best way to travel to Grand Canyon National Park is the train!  Follow in the footsteps of hundreds of thousands of travelers since 1901 and ride in a vintage rail car from William, through high desert, prairies and pine forests to Grand Canyon Depot.  

However, the train is more than just a mode of transportation – it’s also one of the most fun activities at the Grand Canyon.  The day starts with the Cataract Creek Gang and the Marshal squaring off at the Williams Depot. There’s a good chance you’ll see those cowboys again on the train later as well!  There are also musicians roaming the train playing Western tunes, and your carriage attendant will share stories about the area with you. 

The trip takes 2 hours and 15 minutes each way. You get 3 hours and 45 minutes at the South Rim. 

>> BOOK A RETURN TRAIN TRIP FROM WILLIAM TO GRAND CANYON 


24. Take a Jeep tour

One of the more fun Grand Canyon activities for the whole family is to take a sightseeing tour in an open-air (in summer; closed sides in winter) Hummer.  The two-hour tour stops off at several viewpoints for photos and includes commentary from an experienced guide. 

>> BOOK A HUMMER GRAND CANYON SIGHTSEEING TOUR 


25. Soar Over the Canyon

Grand Canyon aerial view Grand Canyon
View of Grand Canyon from a small plane

Taking a scenic flight is probably on your Grand Canyon bucket list.  It’s hard to beat the views of the canyon from the air. 40-minute flights in a fixed-wing plane with extra-large windows leave from nearby Tusayan Airport.   

Fly over the eastern part of the Grand Canyon and see Horseshoe Bend and Zuni Point, before zooming over the Painted Desert, and returning via the North Rim and the Kaibab National Forest.  Along the way, you’ll learn about Grand Canyon’s natural history, geology and human history. 

There are maximum 9 passengers. 

>> BOOK A SCENIC FLIGHT OVER THE GRAND CANYON 


26. Take a Helicopter Flight 

helicopter Grand Canyon

The other way to fly over the Grand Canyon is in a helicopter. You can fly from Tusayan (just south of the national park) or from Las Vegas. 

Best helicopter tour of Grand Canyon from Tusayan 

Take a luxe helicopter with wraparound panoramic windows.  Fly over Kaibab National Forest and the largest ponderosa pines in the world before zooming over the eastern canyon and Colorado River.  You’ll also see the Painted Desert, Desert View Watchtower, Marble Canyon, and Point Imperial before returning through the dramatic Dragon Corridor, the widest and deepest section of the Grand Canyon. 

There are multiple departure times daily.  Maximum 7 travelers per flight. 

>> BOOK A 45-MINUTE GRAND CANYON HELICOPTER FLIGHT FROM TUSAYAN

Best helicopter tour Grand Canyon from Las Vegas

If you’re in Vegas and want to fly over Grand Canyon, then this is for you.  You’ll fly over Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam, the Black Mountains, Grapevine Mesa, and the Mojave Desert before seeing the Grand Wash Cliffs as you enter Grand Canyon West. You’ll see the Skywalk and the Colorado River as you fly below the rim of the West Canyon. 

>> BOOK A 75-MINUTE GRAND CANYON HELICOPTER FLIGHT FROM LAS VEGAS


27. Go Skydiving

tandem skydive Grand Canyon

If you’re an adventure lover/ adrenaline junkie, the this is a clear choice for one of the best things to do.  South Rim Grand Canyon has tandem sky dives available. 

The jump is not over the canyon itself, but you’ll have great views of the canyon as you jump, attached to an experienced skydiver, out of a small plane nearby, freefall for a few crazy seconds, then float slowly down, with ample time to soak in the Grand Canyon views. 

>> BOOK A GRAND CANYON SKY DIVE


28. See Grand Canyon in IMAX

Tusayan Imax Grand Canyon

If you don’t want to actually brave the river rapids or hop in a plane, you can still experience the best of Grand Canyon National Park on a 6-story IMAX screen.  In nearby Tusayan, there’s an IMAX theater showing “Grand Canyon: The Movie.” Fly over the canyon, swoop down into its depths, ride the river rapids, discover the canyon’s hidden secrets, and learn all about the its history.  

>> SKIP THE LINE WITH PRE-BOUGHT IMAX TICKETS


29. Live Out Your Cowboy Fantasies

western horse ride Grand Canyon

If you’ve had enough of the views and hikes and are looking for other things to do near Grand Canyon South Rim, then a ranch experience might be exactly what you need.  

This is one of the most fun things to do near the Grand Canyon.  Live like a cowboy – take a horseback ride through a Joshua Tree Forest or covered wagon ride; campout overnight or stay in a comfortable cabin; roast marshmallows, listen to Western songs and cowboy stories around a campfire; and see the resident herd of bison.  You can even add a helicopter ride over the Grand Canyon. This is truly one of the most unique things to do around the Grand Canyon. 

>> BOOK A NIGHT AT THE HISTORIC GRAND CANYON WESTERN RANCH WITH OPTIONAL ADD ONS


30. Walk Out Over the Canyon’s Edge at Skywalk

Skywalk Grand Canyon

One of the top things to do Grand Canyon West Rim is the Skywalk.  This is a walkway with a glass bottom that extends from the rim over the canyon, so you can look straight down to the canyon floor.   

Day tour from Las Vegas to Skywalk 

The West Rim is not easily accessible from the South Rim, so most people visit from Vegas.  An easy option is a one-day coach tour that stops at Hoover Dam for photos before heading to the West Rim and the Skywalk.  On the return trip, you go through a Joshua Tree forest.  

>> BOOK DAY TOUR FROM LAS VEGAS TO GRAND CANYON SKYWALK


If you are planning to visit Grand Canyon National Park, make your planning easy and stress free with a detailed itinerary. I have 1-, 2-, and 3-day itineraries for the South Rim of Grand Canyon that include all the park highlights, give you choices based on your preferred activity level, and take all the stress out of planning your trip. 

Check out the three Grand Canyon itinerary options

Travel Insurance for Grand Canyon 

In addition to answering “What is there to do at the Grand Canyon?”, you should also get travel insurance.  This is true whenever you travel, but especially when visiting national parks.  If you hike, you will want to make sure your insurance covers medical repatriation in case you get injured on a remote trail.  But even if your trip just includes more relaxing things to do at Grand Canyon National Park, travel insurance can cover trip cancelation, loss or theft of property, etc. 

 A great insurance option is World Nomads.  You can book it here  or get a quote right here: 

Enjoy Grand Canyon National Park! 

What are your top Grand Canyon things to do?    I’d love to know.  Join my private Facebook group National Parks Collectors and comment and let me know (you can also pick up extra planning tips, share your photos and stories with other national park lovers and more).   

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Best Things To Do in Grand Canyon

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Best Things To Do in Grand Canyon National Park
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About the Author

James Ian Yosemite

James Ian has traveled to 82 countries and all 7 continents.  He has visited all of the main national parks in the United States, as well as many national monuments and state parks.

He has rafted through the Grand Canyon; rappelled down slot canyons near Zion and Arches; hiked among the hoodoos in Bryce and the enormous trees in Sequoia; admired the waterfalls in Yosemite and the colored hot springs in Yellowstone; seen moose in Grand Tetons and seals in the Channel Islands, and much more.

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