Horseshoe Bend Parking Lot Reopens, Entrance Fees Implemented

Effective Saturday, April 13th, the newly expanded visitor parking area at the Horseshoe Bend Overlook South of Page, AZ, will be open to the public. The parking lot had been closed during the daytime hours since January 30th to facilitate completion of the project before peak tourist season in Northern Arizona. 

Visitors to the Horseshoe Bend Overlook will also be required to pay entrance fees determined by City of Page Resolution #1224-19, effective immediately, as follows:

  • Motorcycle: $5
  • Passenger vehicles (car, truck, SUV, RV, motorhome): $10
  • Commercial vans with passenger capacity of 14 or less: $35*
  • Mid-sized commercial and tour buses with passenger capacity of 15-35: $70*
  • Full-size buses with passenger capacity of 35 or more: $140*

*commercial and touring vehicle fees are determined by vehicle size, not number of passengers it is carrying

The above fees may be subject to change without notice.

“Those planning trips to Page, AZ, and Horseshoe Bend are reminded that if they find all official parking areas to be full at the time of their visit, they will be required to return at another time when they can find available space. Parking on the side of US89 is strictly prohibited.

You're So Close to This Instagram Classic

You're just 7 miles from Antelope Canyon! Take this opportunity to check it off your bucket list!

Those planning trips to Page, AZ, and Horseshoe Bend are reminded that if they find all official parking areas to be full at the time of their visit, they will be required to return at another time when they can find available space. Parking on the side of US89 is strictly prohibited. Those who do so risk having their vehicle towed and incurring fines. The Horseshoe Bend Overlook is busiest between the hours of 9:00 AM and 6:00 PM when day visitors from Las Vegas, Phoenix, Flagstaff, and other gateway communities are arriving and departing.

Should you prefer not to deal with the potential inconvenience and expense of the new arrangements at Horseshoe Bend, other means of seeing this unique curve of the Colorado River include:

Advance reservations are strongly recommended for all guided tours to Horseshoe Bend, Antelope Canyon, and Lake Powell.

544 Responses

  1. Thanks for sharing these amazing travel alert hacks with us… Keep sharing the good work ahead…Bookmarked for the future read.

  2. Is there oversized parking? We will be pulling our travel trailer from Zion to the Grand Canyon the day we visit so need parking for a camper.

    1. Hi Kristen,
      There are spaces designated for buses and other large and/or long vehicles, but they are first-come/first-served. They are usually full by 9:00 AM, so try to get to Horseshoe Bend as early as possible. If for some reason this is not feasible, you might consider going to Horseshoe Bend with a guided tour out of Page, AZ. Horseshoe Bend Tours goes to the rim via a private access road on Navajo land, which means a shorter walk to the overlook, and not having to hassle with parking.
      Hope that helps. Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Hi, my wife and I are planning on visiting the beginning of August. Can you tell me if a standard electric scooter (Pride type) can make it up the trail to horseshoe bend overlook. She is a photographer but I believe that is the only way to get her to the lookout, correct? She cannot walk the 3/4 mile
        trail.

        1. Hey Ralph,
          You are correct that the only way to get out to the overlook is to navigate the .7 mile trail from the parking lot to the rim.
          As to whether your wife’s scooter can make it, I cannot answer that from personal experience. Complicating matters is that second-hand reports of the trail vary from “yes, it’s wheelchair accessible,” to “are you kidding me?”
          My suggestion would be to look to YouTube. People post videos of their visits to Horseshoe Bend all the time, and some will invariably devote some time to the actual hike on the trail. If you forward to the 2:45 mark on this video by Look Who’s Blogging, for example, you’ll see that the trail is partially chip-sealed, but half of it still remains unpaved. As you might be able to see also, the chip-sealed portion of the trail is slightly rough, which again, may not be the best surface for a scooter.
          Only you can make the decision as to whether to attempt the Horseshoe Bend Overlook trail. If you decide against it, you might consider other ways of seeing it, namely, flying over it in a fixed-wing airplane or helicopter. These depart daily out of the Page Municipal Airport, weather permitting, and possibly contingent on a certain number of passengers traveling. Yes, it’s a pricey way to go, but physical exertion required on the part of the passenger is minimal.
          Hope that helps. Please feel free to write me directly at [email protected] if you have further questions.
          Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

          1. Can you tell me approximate address of parking lot? We will be driving from Grand Canyon tomorrow.

          2. Hi Lynn,
            The Horseshoe Bend parking lot is near mile marker 545 of US Highway 89, approximately 5 miles South of Page, AZ. It is very clearly signed and easy to see from the highway!
            Good luck and safe travels,
            Alley 🙂

      2. Hi Alley! Thanks for your useful insights. Would you say that Horseshoe Bend would be crowded for RV parking still by mid September, is arriving by 11am? Alternatively, how much one needs to budget to take the RV to Page and arrange with LPowell Tourism a visit to the bend?

        1. Hi Javier,
          Tourism numbers in Page, AZ, are nowhere near what they were pre-COVID; not yet, anyway. So whether or not you would have trouble finding parking for your RV in September can’t be accurately predicted. As for what you need to budget, here again, that depends on gas prices, which are notoriously unpredictable. Currently in Flagstaff, AZ (the cheapest place to get gas in Northern AZ typically), gas is going for $3.02/gallon (US dollars). RV’s typically consume a lot of gas, so that must be factored in.
          If you opt to take some kind of tour or transit to Horseshoe Bend from Page, AZ, Horseshoe Bend Tours offers shuttles 3x daily, at 10:30 AM, 12:30 PM, and 2:30 PM, for $59 + tax per ticket.
          Hope that helps. Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

      3. Alley, do you know if there is any help for handicap people to get from the Horseshoe Bend parking lot down to the boats. We are booking a tour but I understand it is a trek from parking to the raft.

        1. Hi Doug,
          It would be a trek for an able-bodied individual to travel from the Horseshoe Bend parking lot down to the river! There is no tour that requires this.
          The only access to the Colorado River in the vicinity of Page, AZ, is at the base of the Glen Canyon Dam, or Lees Ferry, 15 miles downstream. To get to the base of the dam, one must take a short motorcoach ride, then get off at a short ramp that leads down to the rafts that float through Horseshoe Bend. At Lees Ferry, there is also a launch ramp for kayaks, white water river rafts, and other motorized watercraft.
          If you are asking this because you are taking a commercial tour, such as the Horseshoe Bend Float Trip, or a kayak trip from Lees Ferry, you should call your tour company to discuss this matter. If you are taking the Horseshoe Bend Float Trip, Wilderness River Adventures is who you should contact, at 928-645-3296. If you were doing a kayak rental and backhaul, there are several companies that offer this, in which case you would need to find out who your tour company is by name, and look up their contact information.
          Hope that helps. Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

          1. Understood. We will book through the tour company you recommend

            I did have one other question. We have one other day that we were planning on renting a pontoon and just exploring from Wahweap where we are staying. Aarmark states that there are no pontoons available for the period 10/28-11/01. Trying to book one on line I find that only power boats are available. It got me to thinking, are there any other tours that you would recommend that we could take and get a flavor for the lake as opposed to a dedicated tour to the dam or a specific area. There are 8 of us. Thanks so much!

          2. Hi again, Doug –
            Any motorized boating activities on Lake Powell are going to be few and far between for the foreseeable future due to historically low water levels. National Park Service and ARAMARK are scrambling to get an auxiliary boat ramp up and running so smaller boats can launch, but it remains to be seen if that will even work. In the meantime, ARAMARK is offering private boat charters, but the maximum number of passengers they can carry is 6. Your group would probably need 2 boats. At any rate, this service must be booked by phone at 928-645-1027. Should such a thing be cost-prohibitive for your group, another excellent way to get a ‘flavor’ for the lake would be to fly over it. Fixed wing airplanes depart from the Page Municipal Airport daily, weather permitting. Some aircraft, namely the Cessna Caravan, can seat up to 8 people, depending on individual passenger weights. Air tours would not land anywhere on the lake, but you would get a truer sense of the size and scope of Lake Powell (even with low water level) by getting up above it. For more information on a scenic air tour, contact Grand Canyon Airlines at 928-645-0246 or 928-638-2407.
            If the prospect of flying doesn’t appeal, another option worth considering is to take a 4×4 tour to Alstrom Point. While this tour wouldn’t get you on the water, it would get you to a stunning viewpoint that, by virtue of its altitude, takes in a good chunk of Lake Powell. Plus you’d get to see it from a vantage point experienced by only a small fraction of Page, AZ, visitors! Alstrom Point Tours
            Have fun,
            Alley 🙂

  3. Hi there!
    We plan to drive from South rim Grand Canyon do the bus tour and then drive to Horseshoe bend. Do we have to hike to get to the top of horseshoe bend or is there an area to park and walk to the view?

    1. Hey Danielle,
      It depends on what you define as a “hike.” 😉
      Horseshoe Bend is located 5 miles South of the town of Page, Arizona. Page, AZ, is about a 3-3.5 hour drive from Grand Canyon South Rim. While the distance is only ~140 miles, which can be driven in 2.5 hours or less, that’s “wheels turning, no stops.” That rarely happens because the drive is very scenic and you will be stopping to take photos more than you realize. This is especially true of the section of AZ64 between Grand Canyon Village and Desert View Point, where there is over half a dozen named Grand Canyon viewpoints, all with varying perspectives and different features. You’ll want to stop at as many as possible.
      Upon arrival at Horseshoe Bend, you pay your $10/vehicle entrance fee, then walk to the rim via a .7-mile (one way) trail. The trail itself is partially paved and graded. It has some mild uphill/downhill movement, but if everyone in your party is reasonably healthy, you should be able to manage it. Here’s a video of it you might watch to determine whether it’s appropriate for your group. Finley Holidays Horseshoe Bend Be sure to bring enough water for all members of your traveling party, wear sun protection, and appropriate shoes for walking.
      Should you decide that one or more members of your party would not be able to manage the walk to Horseshoe Bend, you might consider flying over it. Fixed wing airplanes and helicopters depart from the Page Municipal Airport daily, weather permitting and contingent on a certain number of passengers flying. Morning is the best time to fly for lighting and lack of wind.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  4. I understand that National Park, Monument or Recreation passes can’t be used for parking fees. It sounds to me like that’s the entrance fee anyway. Why? It’s within Vermilion Cliffs National Monument isn’t it? I’m a senior with a lifetime pass.

    1. Hey Rick,
      This is a really good question!
      Although Horseshoe Bend technically falls partially within Glen Canyon National Recreation Area and the Navajo Indian Reservation, the area where the parking lot is located falls under the jurisdiction of the City of Page, Arizona. Therefore, the parking lot is managed as a separate entity from the park, with its own fee structure, which unfortunately doesn’t include the National Park Senior Pass.
      You are by no means the first person to express some frustration with this system, and we encourage you to make your concerns known to the City of Page by contacting them directly. For more information, visit http://www.cityofpage.org
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  5. Hi Alley,
    Me and my boyfriend are planning a last minute road trip and would like your advice. The rough plan is to visit Phoenix, Sedona, Grand Canyon (Not sure which rim, possibly East Rim?), Bryce Canyon, and Zion. Will be in Phoenix on Saturday night, May 22, and would need to head back to California from Utah on Friday May 28th. Our dilemma is how many nights we should spend at each place or whether we should cut out some destinations. Your help is appreciated. Also, any other must see recommendations along the way?
    Thanks!

    1. Hey Annie!
      From Phoenix, Grand Canyon South Rim would be the easiest area of the Grand Canyon to visit, but you will end up seeing part of the East Rim on the drive up to Utah.
      In light of your timeframe, here’s what I’d recommend:
      May 23rd: Drive from Phoenix to Sedona, AZ (~2 hours), overnight in Sedona
      May 24th: 2nd day/night in Sedona
      May 25th: Drive from Sedona, AZ to Grand Canyon South Rim (~2.5 hours), overnight at the Grand Canyon
      May 26th: Drive from Grand Canyon South Rim to Bryce (~5.5 hour drive, stop at Horseshoe Bend in Page, AZ, if desired), overnight in Bryce
      May 27th: Drive from Bryce to Zion (~2 hours), overnight in Zion
      May 28th: Leave Zion for CA
      RE: the South Rim vs. East Rim, the drive from GC South Rim to Page, Bryce, or Zion will take you along the East Rim/Desert View Drive of the park, where there are over half a dozen named Grand Canyon viewpoints you can stop at if you want. That will add time to an already long drive, so you might rethink your plan and drop a night in Sedona, and instead of driving from GC straight to Bryce, spend the night in Page, AZ, in between. That way you can stop at Horseshoe Bend and enjoy a few other sights in the area before heading to your next destination.
      Custom Trip Map
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  6. Hi Alley,
    We will be staying in Page for the 4th of July. Can you see the fireworks from Wawheap RV Park? If not, is there a convenient place nearby to view?
    Thank you!

    1. Hey Jill!
      This is a really good question. Typically, the 4th of July Fireworks in Page, AZ, are held at the Lake Powell National Golf Course. I believe that is the plan this year, too.
      The Wahweap RV Park is situated in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area behind a ridge, so your view of the fireworks from there would be obstructed. I would recommend making the drive into Page, AZ (~20 minutes from the RV park), and trying to find a seat near the golf course, Rim View drive, or the area behind the National Park Service building.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  7. Planning a trip to Horseshoe Bend and other areas to see the Grand Canyon. Driving up from Phoenix, will probably overnight in Page and then venture out to Vegas. What areas are available to sightsee?

    1. Hey Keith!
      Not trying to be sarcastic, but how long have you got?
      Using Phoenix as your starting point and Vegas as your ending point, you could easily make an unforgettable 7-10 day trip that includes:
      – Sedona
      – Grand Canyon South Rim
      – Horseshoe Bend
      – Lake Powell
      – Bryce Canyon
      – Zion National Park
      – Valley of Fire State Park
      The Ultimate 7-Day Grand Circle Tour
      If you want, write me directly at [email protected] and be more specific about your timeframe, time of year you’re traveling, who you’re traveling with (kids? seniors? both?), etc.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  8. Alley
    In Sept, we will spend three days in Zion and Bryce, then have booked a few nights in Sedona (instead of Page & all the Canyon closures) before heading to El Tovar/Grand Canyon for several days on our 10day loop from LV. My question is about fitting in Horseshoe Bend. I know we have a full day of driving from Bryce, but do you think it is worth a tour of Horseshoe Bend or doing something in the Lake Powell area before heading south to Sedona?

    1. Hi Gail!
      It’s ~a 5-hour drive from Zion National Park to Sedona, AZ. You pretty much have to pass through Page, AZ, anyway, so a visit to Horseshoe Bend would be a perfectly good way to break up the drive. A tour is not required to visit Horseshoe Bend, you simply go at your leisure between the hours of sunrise and sunset. You should allot 90 minutes to 2 hours to visit Horseshoe Bend, including parking your vehicle ($10-$35 parking fee depending on type of vehicle), walking to the rim, taking photos, then walking back to the parking lot.
      Not sure when exactly in September your trip is, but in mid-September, sunrise occurs at 6:09 am and sunset takes place at 6:32 pm. You’ll want to allow ~3 hours to drive from Page, AZ, to Sedona, and you want to be sure you do the entire drive in daylight. Nighttime driving is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to local roads being very dimly lit and possibly having deer, elk, and other wildlife around. A collision with a large animal is not something you want to risk in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, cold (nighttime lows can be chilly in the higher altitude areas), where cell service is spotty (IF you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. The stretch of road between Flagstaff, AZ, and Sedona is particularly narrow and windy, and quite disconcerting to drive at night (I know, I’ve done it, and won’t do it again!). Be sure you hit the road out of Page, AZ, by 3:30-3:45 PM at the latest.
      Hope that helps! Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  9. Hi Alley,

    Thank you for all of your great comments here! My wife and I are going to be coming through Page AZ in June on a road trip and I am hoping you can give us some pointers for how to get the most out of our time in Page since it will be our first visit to the area. We will be hiking Bryce Canyon on the morning of Sun June 13 and then driving to Page in the afternoon. We will stay over that night and spend all day June 14 in Page and then we will leave early morning June 15 to drive east through Monument Valley and back into Colorado. We of course want to see Horseshoe Bend and I haven’t decided when makes the most sense to do that … possibly at sunrise on June 15 before leaving town? Some things I am considering doing with our full day in Page is a tour to the White Pocket, hiking Cathedral Wash and/or Toadstool Hoodoos trails and maybe a tour of Antelope Canyon if the sections on tribal lands happen to open by mid June. Do you know if there is any local talk of when Antelope Canyon may reopen? Any thoughts you have for us as we plan our time in Page would be great! We did Zion and Grand Canyon on a trip last fall so we are planning to skip those this time around.

    Thanks!
    David

    1. Hey David!
      I wish we knew for sure when the Antelope Canyons were going to reopen, but the Navajo Tribe has given no indication as to when that might be. All they’ve done thus far is reiterate that Tribal Parks are still closed. The best thing to do is to monitor the official website of the Navajo Nation Parks & Recreation Department for current updates. In the meantime, consider upgrading any “plan B” options as “plan A” status. A popular alternative through all this has been to kayak into the waterside of Antelope Canyon, then hike into the “pre-slot” portion of the Lower Canyon, which is on Federal and not Tribal land. This activity is best done first thing in the morning for lack of wind and minimal chop from large boat wakes.
      Another popular option — which is something you might do on the way from Bryce to Page — is to hike Wire Pass Canyon and Buckskin Gulch. This photogenic two-part slot canyon is a relatively easy hike that people of most ages and physical fitness levels can manage. The trailhead is located down the House Rock Valley Road, which is unpaved. While it is manageable by 2WD vehicles most of the time, if recent weather has brought any rain or snow, it will turn into a red clay slip-n-slide, in which case, you probably should pass on this activity. The Paria Rimrocks/Toadstool Hoodoos can easily be piggy-backed onto a hike into Wire Pass, like this young family did in this video. Again, both area conveniently located between Bryce Canyon and Page, AZ.
      White Pocket is a stunning area, you won’t regret visiting that area at all! A guided tour is strongly recommended due to the access route being very sandy, people get stuck out there all the time. Be sure you reserve your seats ahead of time, this area has become very popular as an alternate to The Wave. Wave/White Pocket Guides In your case, Horseshoe Bend would be best visited on your way out of town as you head to Monument Valley. Custom Trip Map
      You might want to pass on Cathedral Wash this time around as it would be somewhat out of your way. Or, set aside another day to visit it, as well as other sites nearby such as Navajo Bridge, Lees Ferry & Lonely Dell Ranch, Marble Canyon, and Cliff Dweller’s.
      Hope that helps! Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  10. Alley,
    A slightly different question for you than most have posted. I’m looking to propose to my girlfriend while in Page. Horseshoe Bend would be my fallback spot, but are there any not super busy, sandy beaches around Lake Powell where you can watch a good sunset? Will be there on a Wednesday and I’m staying at the Lake Powell Resort & Marina.

    1. Hi Dan,
      OMG what a wonderful idea!
      Unfortunately, it’s kind of hard to find anyplace near Page, AZ, that isn’t crowded, especially those within easy vehicular access. If you want to avoid crowds, be at your chosen spot first thing in the morning. There will be people there, but not as many as what you’d find later on in the day. Lone Rock Beach and Wahweap Swim Beach are both nice, the latter will be closest in proximity to Lake Powell Resort. You might also consider reserving a table with a view at the Rainbow Room!
      If you don’t mind doing a little driving or spending a little $$$ for a moment you’ll remember for a lifetime, you might consider going to Alstrom Point. This is a stunning viewpoint, not a beach, but more of a cliffside perspective with a 270 degree panorama of Lake Powell and the surrounding area. It is possible to drive yourself to Alstrom Point, but the road is unpaved and is best navigated by 4WD vehicles, a lot of patience, and a good map. To be on the safe side, going with a guided tour company is the best bet. Alstrom Point Tours
      Then there’s this
      Good luck, safe travels, and happy hopeful nuptials,
      Alley 🙂

  11. I’m staying at the Wahweap Lake Powell RV park but would like to visit Horse Shoe Bend one early morning for sunrise. However I want to avoid driving my RV there. Are Uber’s relatively easy to come by for this distance between parks or do they have to pay in order to get into the Lake Powell park? If Uber’s aren’t an option, what would you suggest as my means for getting to Horse shoe bend early morning?

    1. Hey Jessica,
      I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but Uber and Lyft have yet to make inroads into Page, AZ, at least not on a reliable basis. Supposedly there is an individual working with Lyft, but from what I heard, their availability is spotty. The only taxi service I’m aware of is a company called Buggy Taxi, and their ratings are also inconsistent at best.
      Long story short, you need to be prepared to drive your RV to Horseshoe Bend. For the least difficulty in parking, I would strongly recommend getting there when the parking lot opens, right at sunrise. If you remain patently opposed to doing that — which I wouldn’t blame you for one bit — I’d recommend calling the Page/Lake Powell Tourism Hub at 928-608-5749 and see what guidance they may be able to provide.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  12. Hi Alley,

    I had a plan of 2 days to GC and PAGE from Las Vegas.
    Day1: Start from Las vegas at 10 AM .. visit hoover dam and then to Horse Shoe Bend.
    Stay and look around till sunset at horse shoe bend.
    Antelope canyons ( upper, lower) – BOTH are closed now.
    So, i will drive back to South Rim at 8 PM and then stay at SOUTH RIM, Grand Canyon.

    Day2: Look all the scenic spots at South Rim and then start to PHX airport my return flight at 10 PM.

    Need an advise on my plan.

    Thank You.

    1. Hi Pavan,
      Sorry friend but I can’t endorse this plan.
      For one, it doesn’t look as though you are fully aware of where things are actually located, or how long it takes to get there.
      For example, Hoover Dam is located about 40 miles, one way, Southeast of Las Vegas. Then, you’d have to go back to Las Vegas to start the 4.5-hour drive to Page, AZ, to visit Horseshoe Bend. Then, you’re proposing to make the 3-hour or so drive to Grand Canyon South Rim after dark? Driving at night is discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to area roads being very dimly lit, and populated by deer, elk, and other wildlife that can elevate your risk of an auto accident. Plus you’re proposing to do 9-10 hours of driving in one day. Not my idea of a vacation.
      If 2 days is truly all you have to work with, and you’ve never been to the Grand Canyon, I recommend prioritizing it over everything else. As a UNESCO World Heritage site, and one of the 7 Natural Wonders of the World, it’s a must-see at some point in one’s lifetime! With the Antelope Canyons closed, and other limitations in place, a visit to Page, AZ, is best scheduled for the future when things reopen to tourists.
      The drive from Las Vegas to Grand Canyon South Rim would naturally take you past Hoover Dam, so no huge deal including that in your itinerary should you cross Page, AZ, off the list. The drive would take ~4.5-5 hours. Stay overnight at Grand Canyon South Rim, then head to Phoenix the following day. That drive will also take ~4 hours, longer if you decide to stop off at some scenic spots, or perhaps detour through Sedona. Revised Trip Map
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

    1. Hi Dan,
      In theory, yes, but in practice, it’s not that simple.
      I would recommend getting to the parking lot right at sunrise so you don’t have as many visitors to contend with for parking space. Another option, if you plan on staying at one of Page, AZ’s local RV parks or campgrounds, would be to park your 5th wheel, then unhitch your tow vehicle and head on down to Horseshoe Bend at your leisure. The parking lot is open from sunrise to sunset.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  13. Hi Alley,

    I am taking a trip from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon. We are flying in May 6th and staying in Vegas for the day. The morning of the 7th I plan on driving from Vegas to Zion for the scenic drive and head to page shortly after to hike Horseshoe bend. Afterwards, we will be heading to Williams to which we are staying. Any tips on that drive or road closures? We are eager to see the Antelope Canyons but i doubt they will be open.

    Thank you!

    1. Hi Louis,
      The closure of the Antelope Canyons aside, this plan is not realistic. If a day/night is all you have to work with, you need to pick one place to go: Zion and Horseshoe Bend, or the Grand Canyon.
      I’ll break it down into smaller chunks: the drive from Las Vegas to Zion will take ~3 hours. Even if you just drive through the park, you’re then looking at 2 hours’ drive to Horseshoe Bend. I take it you also wanted to visit the Grand Canyon somewhere on this trip? If so, that will take 2.5-3 hours from Page, AZ (where Horseshoe Bend is located), then Williams will be 1 hour South of Grand Canyon South Rim. So if you add it up, 3 + 2 + 3 + 1 = 9 hours behind the wheel, and that’s not even factoring in any stops to do any sightseeing, meals, fueling, etc.
      Even though all roads along these routes are open and passable (the Navajo Tribe still discourages stopping on reservation lands), you should take two full days, bare minimum to accomplish all the goals on your list.
      If you’ve never been to the Grand Canyon, you should prioritize it over everything else in the area. As a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the 7 Natural Wonders of the World, it shouldn’t be treated as an afterthought. It takes ~4.5 hours to drive from Las Vegas to Grand Canyon South Rim, then 1 hour back to Williams. The return trip to Las Vegas from Williams would then be ~3.5 hours.
      Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but you’re supposed to be on vacation, and your present plan sounds more like a race against the clock than relaxation.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  14. I want to do some night Milky Way photography at horseshoe bend in May. Is this possible given the parking lot hours? I’ve seen some beautiful shots in the past.

    1. Hey Joel!
      In the past, Horseshoe Bend was accessible 24 hours a day. That was before Instagram propelled it to bucket list status for just about every traveler to Northern Arizona. Today, the parking lot is open from sunrise to sunset. To my knowledge, they do allow folks to linger a bit after dusk, but not to stay all night. Overnight parking and/or camping is expressly prohibited. Since the parking lot is managed by the City of Page, AZ, you might contact them to see if you can possibly arrange to stay longer. The Economic Development/Tourism department can be reached at (928) 645-4310. If that doesn’t work, don’t worry: there are plenty of good places for night photography around here! One of my personal favorites just a short distance over the border of Utah is “The Moon” in the small town of Big Water. The drive to Big Water, UT, is also worthwhile for the opportunity to visit the local Visitors Center and Dinosaur Museum!
      One word of caution: normally we do not recommend driving after sunset, and the area around The Moon warrants an extra degree of care NOT to drive too far off-road. If you get stuck or lost, help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  15. Hi Alley, Been searching through all your responses, Thanks so much. Thought I’d go ahead and ask for your assistance and or suggestions while in Flagstaff. Will arrive June 1st, 2021 leaving the 4th for Bryce Canyon, had scheduled Antelope and Horseshoe guided tour but Covid stopped that one. I see from your answers we can still see Horseshoe, what else would you suggest til the 4th when we leave?
    Thank you again

    1. Hey Barbara!
      Instead of visiting Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon (yes, they are ‘technically’ closed, but there’s a potential workaround… more on that in a minute 😉 as a day trip from Flagstaff, AZ, I’d recommend overnighting in Page, AZ. For one, it’s a 2.5 hour drive, each way, from Flagstaff, AZ. Secondly, you have to pass through Page, AZ, anyway on the way to Bryce Canyon, so an overnight there would help you avoid a crapload (oops, pardon my French) of backtracking.
      Another advantage to doing it that way would be that you could hit Horseshoe Bend on the way into town, then take a kayak tour into the waterside of Antelope Canyon the following morning (that’s the workaround). The waterside of Antelope Canyon, as well as the pre-slot section on the shoreline of Lake Powell, is on Federal and not Tribal land, so it is still accessible. However, kayaking is best done first thing in the morning for less wind and minimal chop from larger tour boat traffic.
      Yet another advantage to scheduling an overnight in Page, AZ, is that you could take your time on the drive up and enjoy a cool little detour: the Wupatki/Sunset Crater Scenic Loop Drive. This will take you by a Sinagua Indian Pueblo complex (a rather sophisticated one that that) and a dormant volcano. That will add a couple of hours onto your drive time, but most who take me up on the suggestion count it as time well spent!
      The drive to Bryce from Page, AZ, would then be ~3 hours, and on the way, you might stop to hike the very cool Paria Rimrocks/Toadstool Hoodoos Trail!
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  16. We are planning a visit in August 2021 with our kids. Do you have any suggestions for other slot canyons since Antelope Canyon is closed?

    1. Hey Kelly,
      We’re crossing fingers and toes that the Antelope Canyons can reopen by August, but in the event they don’t, good alternatives would be:
      – Kayaking into the waterside of Antelope Canyon from Antelope Point Marina, which includes some hiking into the pre-slot portion of the Lower canyon, on Federal and not Tribal Land. This activity is best done in the earlier morning hours for less wind and minimal chop from larger boat traffic. There are several companies offering this service, the one we’re most familiar with is Lake Powell/Hidden Canyon Kayak.
      – Wire Pass Canyon/Buckskin Gulch: a photogenic two-part slot canyon that is short enough for intermediate-level hikers to enjoy, yet offers the option to delve further into Buckskin Gulch for those wanting more of a challenge. The walk to the entrance of the initial slot is via a typically dry streambed full of deep sand (usually). An 8-10’ drop a short distance into the slot canyon is one reason why Wire Pass Canyon may not be appropriate for those traveling with young children, the elderly, or individuals afraid of heights, but a ladder placed there recently has made this obstacle easier to manage. As the canyon walls become higher and closer together, they suddenly open up as the second slot connects with the Buckskin Gulch. If you’ve had enough at this point, you can simply turn around and head back to your vehicle. If you’d like to explore further, you can easily make a half-day hike out of the immediate area around the confluence with the Buckskin. Access to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch is off US89 between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT, on the House Rock Valley Road. Hikers are required to pay a self-permitting fee either in advance or at the kiosk by the trailhead. The House Rock Valley Road is unpaved! While it is accessible to 2WD vehicles much of the time, if recent weather has brought any moisture whatsoever, the HRVR can turn into a muddy, impassable mess. Parties in rental cars should think twice about attempting this road since off-road driving is strictly prohibited by most rental car companies. A guided tour will get your family to Wire Pass Canyon and back in one piece, and turn you onto features you might have missed trying to find your own way. Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT based companies offering guided tours to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch include:
      *Detours American West, 480-633-9013, http://www.detoursamericanwest.com
      *Paria Outpost & Outfitters, 928-691-1047, http://www.paria.com
      *Grand Staircase Discovery Tours, 928-614-4099, http://www.grandstaircasediscoverytours.com
      – Red Canyon aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon: a family-friendly slot canyon located between Kanab and Mt. Carmel Junction, Utah, approximately 90 minutes from Page, AZ. With twists and turns on par with the Antelope Canyons, this short but memorable walk features classic slot canyon scenery, including occasional light beams in the summertime. While a guided tour is not required to get to Peek-A-Boo, we strongly recommend that you consider taking one, because while the walk through the canyon itself is usually not difficult, the drive to get there can be. 4WD vehicles with adequate clearance are a definite must, with tire pressure lowered to accommodate potentially deep sand. If you’re driving a rental car, You will void your insurance the minute your tires part with the pavement, which means you’d be on the hook for a very expensive rescue, should you need one, and have to foot the bill for any damage you’d sustain. Reputable tour companies are:
      *Dreamland Safari Tours, (435) 412-1790, http://www.dreamlandtours.net
      *TC Tours, (435) 668-5262, http://www.slotcanyontourskanab.com
      *Kanab Tour Company, (435) 644-5525, http://www.kanabtourcompany.com
      *Forever Adventure Tours, 435-644-5700, http://www.foreveradventuretours.com
      *Grand Circle Tours, (928) 691-0166, http://www.vermilioncliffs.net
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  17. Hi there!
    First, I’d like to say how appreciative I am of the dialogue happening here and the helpful information getting passed on through your comments. My family and I are planning a trip on 4/10 and have never been to Page or the GC! If Horseshoe bend is only going to take us a couple of hours on Saturday morning, are there other spots that you recommend nearby or other activities that are not too expensive for us to get the most out of our day?

    Thanks in advance! ☺️

    1. Hi Bri,
      Horseshoe Bend is indeed lovely, but only a small fraction of the myriad sightseeing opportunities the Page, AZ, area has to offer! Other sights you might explore include, but is not limited to:
      Page Rim View Trail
      Glen Canyon Dam/Steel Arch Bridge
      Hanging Garden Trail & The Chains
      Glen Canyon Dam/White House Overlook
      Grand View Overlook Park
      The “New” Wave and Radio Tower Rock
      Gunfighter Canyon
      Wahweap Overlook
      Wahweap Swim Beach and/or Lone Rock Beach (located in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, which requires a $30/vehicle entrance fee, good for one week’s time)
      If you have the time and/or inclination to venture a short distance into Utah, there’s also:
      Big Water Visitors Center & Dinosaur Museum
      Paria Rimrocks/Toadstool Hoodoos Trail
      Sure you can’t stay with us another day? 😉
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley

      1. Hi Alley,

        All your posts are super insightful. We will be in page on April 1-15th. It is my understanding the northern rim is closed until mid May as roads are sometimes covered in snow this time of year. Do you happen to know if that is correct? I would prefer to visit northern rim as opposed to taking the long route to southern rim due to the closure of east drive.

        1. Hey Ryan,
          You are correct that the North Rim of the Grand Canyon is closed through May 15th, and I totally get wanting to visit that side of the canyon vs. the South Rim in light of that very inconvenient road closure.
          Aside from pushing your trip back another month, there still might be a way for you to “have your cake and eat it too:” fly over the Grand Canyon! Fixed-wing airplanes depart daily out of the Page Municipal Airport (PGA), weather permitting and possibly contingent on a certain number of people traveling. While aerial tours do not land at the Grand Canyon, they’ll still show you a ton of incredible scenery in addition to the Grand Canyon, in the course of just 90 minutes. For more information, visit Westwind Air Service: Page-Grand Canyon Flights
          Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

  18. I have a flight into Las Vegas booked for May 2 and am picking up a campervan about 1pm. Need to return campervan by May 10 at 11am. Here’s my plan:
    May 2 – Fly in, pickup camper, drive to Sedona, sunset hike?
    May 3 – Hot air balloon in Sedona at sunrise, explore Sedona, drive to GC South Rim. Suggestions on where to stay?
    May 4 – Experience the Grand Canyon. Stay near Grand Canyon.
    May 5 – Drive to Page, Antelope canyon (boat or kayak tour), horseshoe bend, time for something else? Stay in Page
    May 6 – Drive to Bryce Canyon, explore for the day.
    May 7 – Bryce Canyon exploring again. Drive to Zion.
    May 8 – Explore Zion. Stay in Zion
    May 9 – Explore Zion. Stay in Zion.
    May 10 – Leave Zion early to Las Vegas.

    Do you have any thoughts or suggestions? Am I leaving something out I could include or not giving a certain place enough time?

    1. Hey Dan,
      Your trip plan looks really fun!
      The only thing I’d recommend changing is the timing of your Antelope Canyon kayak tour: afternoons on Lake Powell tend to be very windy, and by noon, private watercraft and tour boats are out in large numbers, creating a lot of “chop” on the lake. Most of the waterside of Antelope Canyon is also a wake zone, so you’ll feel every single wave in a kayak. If possible, scoot your kayak tour reservation for first thing the next morning, then drive to Bryce (~3 hours), maybe stopping to enjoy the hike to the Paria Rimrocks and Toadstool Hoodoos on the way.
      One thing I need to forewarn you about: at the moment, a critical component of the shortest travel route from Grand Canyon South Rim to Page, AZ (AZ64 East from Desert View Point to Cameron, AZ) is closed due to COVID-19. It is not expected to open by the time you arrive. This means you’ll have to make a rather long detour through Flagstaff, AZ, to get from one place to the other. This has turned what used to be ~a 3-hour drive into more along the lines of 5 hours. Hit Horseshoe Bend on your way into town, maybe hike part of the Page Rim View Trail or hit the Glen Canyon Dam Steel Arch Bridge and Hanging Garden Trail.
      In Zion, be aware that you’ll have to use the Zion Canyon Shuttle to access the main sightseeing area, and you’ll have to purchase tickets in advance for it.
      On the way back to Las Vegas, get an early start so you can make the short detour through the stunning Valley of Fire State Park when the weather is still relatively pleasant.
      Whatever you decide, be sure to make all hotel and guided tour reservations in advance, if you haven’t done so already.
      Good luck and safe travels!
      Alley 🙂

      1. Alley,

        Thank you so much! This is really great info and that road closure is a real pain. We’re going to move the kayaking to the next morning. Would you suggest doing a guided kayak tour or just rent kayaks on our own and explore the canyon that way?

        1. Hey Dan,
          Guess what? As of yesterday, that road closure on Grand Canyon’s East Rim has since been lifted, woot woot! Nevertheless, I think it’s a good call moving the kayak activity to the following morning. As to whether a tour or rental is better, if it’s your first time at Lake Powell, I’d go with a tour. A guide can turn you onto features you might otherwise miss while your mind is occupied trying to find your way.
          Have fun,
          Alley 🙂

  19. Hi Alley,

    I’m driving to Zion from Phoenix and on our way back we wanted to stop at horseshoe bend. Are there any road closures? Also do you have any other hikes you recommend by horseshoe bend?

    1. Hi Desiree,
      The drive from Zion National Park to Phoenix, AZ, will take ~6.5-7 hours, not including the 90 minutes-2 hours you should allot to visiting Horseshoe Bend. If you’re planning on doing all that in a day, and want to make it to Phoenix by nightfall, you really don’t have time to do any other hikes around Horseshoe Bend unless you can alter your plans to include an overnight stay in Page, AZ. If you can do that, then there’s all kinds of opportunities to enjoy and explore this area, including, but not limited to:
      Page Rim View Trail
      Glen Canyon Dam/Steel Arch Bridge
      Hanging Garden Trail & The Chains
      Glen Canyon Dam/White House Overlook
      Grand View Overlook Park
      The “New” Wave and Radio Tower Rock
      Wahweap Overlook
      – Wahweap Swim Beach and/or Lone Rock Beach (located in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, which requires a $30/vehicle entrance fee, good for one week’s time)
      On the way to Page, AZ, from Zion, there’s also:
      Big Water Visitors Center & Dinosaur Museum
      Paria Rimrocks/Toadstool Hoodoos Trail
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

        1. Hey again Desiree!
          IIRC, you’re planning on driving from Zion to Phoenix, in which case, you will not be affected by any road closures. You will, however, be driving through Navajo Indian Reservation Lands, and the tribe wishes to minimize or eliminate contact between tribe members and outsiders due to COVID-19. Therefore, be prepared to drive straight through, no stops, between Page, AZ, and Flagstaff, AZ. Be sure your vehicle is fully fueled, and that you have adequate water and snacks to tide you over on this part of the drive (~2-2.5 hours).
          Have a great trip,
          Alley 🙂

  20. Hello. I am planning to go to Page from Phoenix tomorrow 1st april 2021.
    Is Horseshoebend open to tourist?. Can I park in the lot parking and walk to the horseshoebend?
    My planned is to drive (starting 7:30am from phoenix) to Page, visit all I can around Page (Horseshoebend, Glen Canyon Dam, Antelope is closed right?).
    How can I get to Paria Canyon? do you recommend it?
    Friday 2 april drive back to phoenix. Stop in South Rim and the Sedona too.
    Do you think it is doable?
    Thanks

    1. David,
      Sorry, this isn’t realistic.
      It takes ~4.5 hours to drive from Phoenix to Page, AZ to visit Horseshoe Bend. You don’t have enough time to visit Paria Canyon, and the Antelope Canyons are closed.
      Normally it takes ~3 hours to drive from Page, AZ, to Grand Canyon South Rim, but due to COVID-19, a critical component of the shortest travel route is closed to all traffic. This means you’ll have to detour all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then resume heading North on US180/AZ46N or I-40/AZ64N. This has turned what used to be about a 3-hour drive into more like 5 hours. Then you’re proposing to drive another 5+ hours back to Phoenix through Sedona? It won’t work.
      If 2 days is all you have, as much as I hate to say it, I’d recommend skipping Page, AZ, and going to Grand Canyon South Rim. Again, that’s ~a 4.5 hour drive from Phoenix. If you wanted to go back to Phoenix through Sedona, that will add another 90 minutes, bare minimum onto your drive time. For that reason alone, you might also skip Sedona. It’s a big area, with lots to see and do, and really warrants 3-4 days time to fully enjoy and explore.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Hello Alley,

        I’ll be in Page & Sedona from April 21-26.

        In your opinion, what is the best time of day to visit Horseshoe bend for a photographer? I’ve heard sunrise and midday (so the river can be in the sunlight). I’ll be in Page for 2 days before heading to Sedona for 3 days.
        Second question: is the drive save from south rim GC to Sedona after sunset? I plan on doing a pink jeep sunset tour and driving back to my hotel in Sedona.

        Thank you in advance! 🙂

        1. Hi Alex,
          Apologies for the delay in response to your inquiry!
          There is no such thing as a “bad” time to photograph Horseshoe Bend. In fact, one photographer actually took the time to sit at Horseshoe Bend for a full day and photograph it. As you can hopefully see, every time slot has its merits and drawbacks, visually speaking. Logistically speaking, we’ve found that just after sunrise is when you can enjoy cooler temperatures and smaller crowds.
          RE driving from GC South Rim to Sedona after sunset, this we have an actual opinion on: avoid it if at all possible. Nighttime driving is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to local roads being very dimly lit, and the possible presence of deer, elk, and other wildlife that can hike up your risk of an auto accident. That’s not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. The stretch of road from Flagstaff, AZ, to Sedona, AZ, in particular is very narrow and windy. I’ve personally driven it in the dark, and will never do it again.
          One thing I feel the need to tell you is that, from your comment, I’m inferring that you’re planning on driving from Page, AZ, to GC South Rim for your sunset tour, then back to Sedona in the same day. This is going to take longer than you think. Due to COVID-19, a critical component of the shortest travel route from Grand Canyon South Rim to Page, AZ (AZ64 East from Cameron, AZ, to Desert View Point) is closed, necessitating a rather long detour through Flagstaff, AZ. This has turned what used to be ~a 3-hour drive into more along the lines of 5 hours. Then you’d be facing ~a 2.5 hour drive back to Sedona? No thanks. A better plan would be to stay overnight at Grand Canyon South Rim, or cancel that sunset tour so you can hit the park earlier and get back to Sedona by nightfall, which occurs just after 7:00 PM at the time of your visit.
          Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

  21. Hi Alley,

    I saw that the Navajo parks and roads are closed until further notice. Are the major highways through the reservation open though? We want to drive from Page to Moab, UT via Kayenta and Blanding (AZ 98, U.S. 160, U.S. 163, U.S. 191). And how much time should we allow for that drive?

    1. Hi Pieter,
      This is a really good question!
      You are able to drive through from Page, AZ, to Moab, UT, even though some of these roads are on Navajo Indian Tribal Lands. The tribe just asks that outsiders avoid stopping while on reservation land, so make sure your vehicle is fully fueled and that you have adequate food and water to tide you over, at least until you get to Bluff, UT.
      We recommend allowing 5-6 hours to make the trip. You might take advantage of the opportunity to visit Goosenecks of the San Juan State Park just outside of Mexican Hat. There are no services there and it’s a $5/per vehicle entrance fee, but a super neat view!
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

    2. We drove all through Kayenta yesterday, and the roads are open. The highways you mentioned are open.

    1. Hey Ray,
      This is a really great question, and I’d say “it depends on who you ask.” This video, for example, depicts a family with a wheelchair passenger navigating the trail with relative ease. However, a recent first-hand report indicates that a gentleman came perilously close to accidentally dumping his wife out of her chair trying to navigate the ups and downs of the trail. ‘
      Naturally, only you can decide if this activity is appropriate for you and your family. If you decide that the walk (which is 1.4 miles round-trip BTW) is too much for you to handle, another way you might see Horseshoe Bend is to fly over it. Fixed-wing airplanes and helicopters depart from the Page Municipal Airport daily, weather permitting, and usually contingent on a certain number of passengers traveling. Mornings are the best time to fly for best light and lack of wind.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  22. Hi, my boyfriend and I are planning to drive from Las Vegas to Horseshoe Bend, my question is, do I have to book a tour, or is this a place we can visit on our own. I only have 1 day to make it to Horseshoe Bend, and have rented a car. Any help will be greatly appreciated. 🙂

    1. Hi Millie,
      You can visit Horseshoe Bend at your leisure, anytime during operating hours of the parking lot, which are sunrise to sunset. No need to get a tour.
      It takes ~4.5 hours — one way — to drive from Las Vegas, NV, to Page, AZ. You should allot anywhere from 90 minutes to 2 hours to park your vehicle ($10/standard passenger vehicles), walk to the rim, take photos, then walk back to your vehicle. Time permitting, you might also visit the Glen Canyon Dam Steel Arch Bridge and the Hanging Gardens Trail.
      One thing that’s very important is that the majority of the drive back to Las Vegas, NV be done during daylight hours. Roads in the more rural areas of Northern Arizona and Southern Utah are very dimly lit, and surrounded by deer, elk, and other wildlife that could ratchet up your risk of a collision. That’s not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, possibly cold, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive.
      Between St. George, UT, and Las Vegas, NV is a pretty good-sized light dome, but the roads between Page, AZ, and St. George, UT, are definitely on the dark side. I would be sure that you time your arrival in St. George for at sunset, or before.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  23. To visit Horseshoe Bend, do we need to buy a $30 Glen Canyon Park Pass? Or is it just the $10 to park? TIA, Barbara

    1. Hey Barbara,
      This is a really good question!
      Since Horseshoe Bend is currently managed as a City Park by the town of Page, AZ, it does not fall under the same jurisdiction as the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. Therefore, you need not pay the $30/vehicle Glen Canyon park fee, just the one-time $10 fee for standard passenger vehicles. Light commercial vehicles such as camper vans, etc. may be subject to a $35/vehicle fee.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  24. Hi Alley, great orientations. Can you recommend a route with quick visits from Page to Flagstaff enough for one day? I will plan to be there first days of April and will departure home from Flagstaff.

    1. Hi Jorge,
      If by “quick visits,” you mean stops you can make between Flagstaff and Page, there are several possibilities for detours to make the drive more fun!
      Just North of Flagstaff, AZ, you can take the Wupatki/Sunset Crater Scenic Loop Drive, which will take you past a dormant volcano and an Ancestral Puebloan ruin complex (a rather sophisticated one at that).
      About 1 hour South of Page, AZ, you can take a short detour off US89 to Lees Ferry, where you can actually drive down to the banks of the Colorado River and dip your feet in, plus explore the Lonely Dell Ranch Historic District, or walk across Navajo Bridge, where you might spot some California Condors sunning themselves on the bridge struts below. Should you arrive around dinnertime, Cliff Dweller’s Restaurant has amazing food and a beautiful view!
      Driving straight through, the trip from Flagstaff, AZ, to Page, AZ, typically takes ~2.5 hours. The Wupatki/Sunset Crater loop will add another 2 hours onto that. The stop at Lees Ferry/Marble Canyon area could add anywhere from 2-5 hours depending on how much time you spend exploring. Trip map
      Whatever you do, make sure that you arrive at your day’s destination by sundown. You should driving at night around here, especially in the more rural areas of Northern Arizona and Southern Utah, where roads are very dimly lit, and populated by deer, elk, and other wildlife that can elevate your risk of a collision. That’s definitely not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, possibly quite cold, where cell service is going to be spotty (if you can get any bars at all) and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. During the early part of April, sunrise takes place just after 6:00 AM and sunset occurs shortly before 7:00 PM.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Thanks Alley, I will travel the other way, from Page to Flagstaff, but I will follow your recommendation as much as possible. Do you think I can visit the Grand Falls or the Meteor Crater in that route? Or need another day?

        1. Hi Jorge,
          Grand Falls is on Navajo Indian Tribal Lands, which are closed to outsiders due to COVID-19.
          Meteor Crater needs another day. It’s located ~1 hour East of Flagstaff, AZ, on I-40. If you visit Meteor Crater, you should also take the opportunity to visit Petrified Forest and Painted Desert, another hour further East. You might stop for lunch in Winslow, AZ, at the Historic La Posada Hotel and take a selfie at “Standing On A Corner” Park.
          Trip map
          Have a great trip!
          Alley 🙂

  25. Hi!
    We are traveling to Grand Canyon on March 27th coming from Flagstaff. The idea we had was to stay on March 26th in Flagstaff, go on the 27th to Grand Canyon and from there drive to Page and stay there on the 27th, google maps says it takes ~2.5 hours, but I have seen in some of the comments that the road is closed due to covid and that it takes longer than that. Can you please let me know if that is still the case? Is it better then to return to Flagstaff and stay there and drive the next day up to Page or that area?

    1. Hi Dianaly,
      Unfortunately, the road closure I’ve been speaking of remains in effect, rendering what used to be a 2.5 hour drive into a 4-5 hour drive. So you might prefer to return to Flagstaff, AZ, after your Grand Canyon visit and simply make the drive to Page, AZ, and Horseshoe Bend the following day.
      It’s ~a 2.5 hour drive from Flagstaff, AZ, to Page, AZ, one way. If you visit as a day trip, be sure you time your sightseeing so that you leave Page, AZ, no later than 4:30 PM. You want to avoid driving at night in Northern AZ, especially between Page and Flag (that’s what we call it around here) due to the bulk of the drive taking you through the Navajo Indian Reservation, and that section of US89 being very dimly lit. At night, you also run an elevated risk of colliding with a deer, elk, sheep, or feral horse, which is not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, freezing cold, where cell service is iffy (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive.
      Hope that helps! Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  26. Hi Alley,

    If we happened to have surplus time going from Page to Bryce with time for zion covered, would you rather spend the extra time possibly going to Capitol Reef or the North Rim?

    We plan on going in late July and my wife and i are going with two daughters aged 6 and 4.

    Thanks!

    Jon

    1. Hi Jon!
      Capitol Reef would be quite a long swing out your way, but a visit to Grand Canyon North Rim could fit in quite nicely between Page, AZ, and Bryce. With days in July still being relatively long (sunrise around 5:30 AM, sunset approximately 7:45 PM), a day trip is still feasible at that time of year. The drive from Page, AZ, to Grand Canyon North Rim takes ~2.5 hours one way. Get an early start on the trip so you can stop at Navajo Bridge and possibly see some California Condors hanging around in the steel arch infrastructure. A visit to the bakery at the Jacob Lake Inn is a definite must for a bagful of their world famous home-made cookies! Upon arrival at the park, tour the historic Grand Canyon Lodge, then take the scenic drive to Cape Royal and Point Imperial. Plan your visit to the North Rim
      Be sure that you plan your return trip to Page, AZ, so that you’re doing all of the drive during daylight hours. Local roads, as with the most roads in Northern AZ and Southern UT, are very dimly lit and populated by deer, elk, and other wildlife that pose a collision risk after dusk. That’s not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, where cell service is spotty, if you can get any bars at all, and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. You might consider overnighting in Kanab, UT on this part of the trip, since it is only ~90 minutes drive (one way) from Grand Canyon North Rim, and Bryce Canyon. Trip map
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  27. Hi!! I’m visiting Las Vegas March 25 and I want to visit Bryce and Horshoebend in 2 days or one day (sunday 28- monday -29) and then return to LV! How do you recommend do plan it? Is there any other places to visit in Page? Thanks

    1. Hey Kevin,
      One day to visit Bryce Canyon and Horseshoe Bend is definitely not enough time, and two days is even pushing it.
      It takes approximately 5 hours to drive from Las Vegas, NV, to Horseshoe Bend. The drive from Page, AZ (the nearest town to Horseshoe Bend) to Bryce Canyon is ~3 hours, then the return drive to Las Vegas, NV, would be approximately 4 hours. Trip map
      Another thing working against you at the time of year you’re visiting is daylength. In March, it’s still relatively short with sunrise occurring at 6:15 AM and sunset taking place at around 6:45 PM. That’s 12.5 hours of daylight, and believe me, it goes by fast in this part of the US! What’s more, nighttime driving is strongly discouraged in the American Southwest due to local roads being very dimly lit, plus the possible presence of deer, elk, and other wildlife that could hike up your risk of an auto accident. Trust me, that’s not something you want to risk in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, very cold (nighttime temps are still hovering around freezing on occasion), where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive!
      If two days is all you can truly spare, I would recommend taking Bryce Canyon off the table this time around. Drive to Page, AZ, taking a detour through Zion National Park (~6 hours), then overnight in Page, AZ.
      Visit Horseshoe Bend the following morning, then head back to Las Vegas, NV, with an optional detour through the stunning Valley of Fire State Park. Trip map
      As for other places to visit in Page, AZ, there’s no shortage of sights to enjoy! Check out:
      Page Rim View Trail
      Glen Canyon Dam/Steel Arch Bridge
      Hanging Garden Trail & The Chains
      Glen Canyon Dam/White House Overlook
      Grand View Overlook Park
      The “New” Wave and Radio Tower Rock
      Gunfighter Canyon
      Wahweap Swim Beach and/or Lone Rock Beach (located in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, which requires a $30/vehicle entrance fee, good for one week’s time)
      If you have the inclination to venture a ways into Utah, you might also hit the Big Water Visitors Center & Dinosaur Museum or the Paria Rimrocks/Toadstool Hoodoos Trail
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  28. Hello! My mom and I are planning to go to the Grand Canyon for two days and then on the third day, plan on stopping by Horseshoe Bend before driving down to New Mexico. We are staying near the Grand Canyon Junction. I know that the Desert Drive to the East entrance of the Grand Canyon is closed and saw that you were advising people to go through Flagstaff. Is HWY 180 closed as well? I looked up on Google Maps and it said that the drive from GC Junction to Horseshoe Bend, even going through Flagstaff, would be 3 1/2 Hours. Is there a lot of traffic that you accounted five hours?

    In terms of driving in the area of Grand Canyon and Horseshoe Bend, I wanted to leave before sunrise to try to get to GC and Horseshoe Bend to catch the sunrise. I also wanted to try to see the stars at night. Is that not a good idea to drive around 5AM or after 9PM?

    Thank you SO much for taking the time to read my email and help with travel plans.

    1. Hey Becky,
      If I’m understanding you correctly, you’re wanting to drive from Grand Canyon Junction (aka Valle, AZ) to Horseshoe Bend, then down to New Mexico in the same day? If so, that will not work. Unfortunately, you will be affected by a road closure on Navajo Tribal Land. Due to the inaccessibility of AZ64 East from Desert View Point to Cameron, AZ, it is necessary to drive all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then continue North on US89 to get to Page, AZ. This has turned what is normally ~a 3-hour drive into more along the lines of a 5-hour trip. US180 is still open (which is a beautiful drive, you should definitely take it), and I know that Google maps quotes the drive time including the detour as 3.5 hours, but that’s wheels turning, no stops. That rarely happens. It doesn’t factor in typical road hazards of the area such as getting stuck behind slow-moving RV’s or semis, variable speed limits in mountain areas, and the inevitable “ooh, look at that!” moment that you should indulge. If you’re of a mind to “make lemonade out of lemons,” you might take advantage of the opportunity to visit Wupatki and Sunset Crater National Monuments, whose highlights are a Ancestral Indian Pueblo (quite a sophisticated one at that), and a dormant volcano. The two monuments are connected via a convenient and scenic loop drive. That would add more time to your trip, but the option is there for you 😉
      A better plan so you can see sunrise and sunset at Horseshoe Bend would be to overnight in Page, AZ. Nighttime driving is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to local roads being very dimly lit, plus the possible presence of deer, elk, and other wildlife that could hike up your risk of an auto accident. Trust me, that’s not something you want to risk in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive!
      Hope that helps. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news in some regards, but we’d rather surprises that pop up on vacation be pleasant ones.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  29. First, thank you for all of your help and tips. I too am planning to spring break my girls, 15 and 17 through Zion, Bryce, Horseshoe, Grand Canyon, Winslow (because I have to stand on a corner) and then to Phoenix before heading back to NorCal. We plan on being in Mt. Carmel Junction on Sunday, 3/28 and then leaving Phoenix on Saturday morning 4/3. I really liked Kanab the last time I came through there (before kids) I know we will only have one day for Zion, one day for Bryce, a pass by Horseshoe, two days in Williams (GC) before rolling down to Phoenix. I will be toting a 32 ft 5th wheel and wonder about the parking lot at Horseshoe, can I get in there or would it work better to do the bus from Page? If so, who would you recommend. Once in a lifetime for my girls might mean helicopter, is that worthwhile? Does the helicopter also do North Rim? Thank you Jeffrey from Sacramento

    1. Hi Jeffrey,
      Camping in a 5th wheel at the time of year you’re visiting, you should definitely plan on staying at developed RV parks with electrical hook-ups. Nighttime temperatures are still dipping down around freezing in some areas, so you’ll want access to reliable heat, or you’ll have two cranky teenage girls come morning!
      If by “NorCal,” you mean around the San Francisco Bay area, you should plan on two days driving to get to Mt. Carmel Junction, UT. Maybe stop over in Barstow, CA, for the night, or Las Vegas, NV. Just don’t stop in Baker, CA, that town’s hinky.
      RE: the parking lot at Horseshoe Bend, if you don’t get there right at sunrise, when crowds are smallest, you might have a heckuva time jockeying a 5th wheel around that parking lot. Unfortunately, the shuttle service is not running due to COVID-19, so here, you might disconnect your tow vehicle in order to get there.
      As for helicopter flights, they’re a blast! Helicopter flights that depart from Grand Canyon National Park Airport do make a pass over the North Rim, so you can get a sense of how different it is from the South Rim. They do not land at the North Rim (no place for it), but if you book the 40-45 minute flight, that will give you the most time over it. If possible, book your flight first thing in the morning for best light and lack of wind, on the Eco-Star EC-130 helicopter.
      One thing I have to point out is that Winslow, AZ, is going to be a long swing out of your way. If you have your heart set on visiting it, you should also take the opportunity to hit Meteor Crater, and Petrified Forest/Painted Desert National Park.
      With these considerations in mind, you could do something like this:
      March 28th: Arrive in Mt. Carmel Junction after sightseeing in Zion, overnight
      March 29th: Drive to Bryce Canyon (~90 minutes from Mt. Carmel Jct), overnight in Bryce Canyon area
      March 30th: Drive to Page, AZ (~2 hours from Mt. Carmel Jct), overnight in Page, AZ
      March 31st: Visit Horseshoe Bend first thing in AM en route to Williams (~3 hour drive from Page, AZ). Park RV, visit Grand Canyon National Park (~1 hour from Williams), overnight in Williams.
      April 1st: 2nd day/night in Williams
      April 2nd: Drive to Petrified Forest/Painted Desert (~2 hours from Williams), Standin’ On A Corner Park, Meteor Crater (~90 minutes from PEFO), overnight in Winslow, AZ area (there’s an RV park at Meteor Crater, never been there, but you might consider it)
      April 3rd: Drive to Phoenix, AZ (~3 hours from Winslow, AZ)
      Custom trip map
      Whatever you decide, be sure to book overnight stays and guided tours in advance. Even with some attractions closed due to COVID-19, people are chomping at the bit to travel and we’re expecting a busy month.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. ~tip of the hat to you.
        We are goin to skip the Winslow jaunt and do it another time. I will be coming out of Mt. Carmel Junction when we come upon Horseshoe Bend, so parking the 5th wheel in the parking lot might be tough? I will heed your advise and look for a place I can unhitch for a couple of hours to get into Horseshoe Bend. One other question, can you do the Slot Canyons there alone or do we need to book a tour guide to get there.

        thank you greatly. wanting to give my girls to get out of their normal routine and a spring break to remember.
        Jeffrey

        1. Hi Jeffrey,
          Probably a good call to skip Winslow this time around. It tends to hold more appeal to *ahem* people of a certain age (of which I’m one, thank you very much!) rather than younger folks, so … maybe a good destination for an adults-only trip in the future.
          As for the slot canyons on Navajo Tribal Land, you absolutely MUST go with a guided tour. If you try to get there on your own, that constitutes trespassing and all that that implies. Slot Canyons that are not on Tribal land and therefore not subject to the closure that affects Navajo sites are Wire Pass Canyon/Buckskin Gulch near Paria, UT, and Red Canyon aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon in Kanab, UT. While a guided tour is not required to visit these, we strongly recommend you take one, especially to Peek-A-Boo, because while the walk through the slot is not hard, the drive to get there is. It goes through a lot of deep sand, so a 4WD vehicle with tire pressure lowered is a must. Even then, people get stuck out there all the time. List of authorized tour guides
          Have fun, and be safe!
          Alley 🙂

    1. Hey Bob,
      The parking lot at Horseshoe Bend is quite large, and what with COVID-19 still putting a bit of a damper on travel, you shouldn’t have too big of a problem finding a place to park. The parking lot is open from sunrise to sunset. We recommend sunrise for smaller crowds 😉
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley

      1. Hi Alley,

        Thank you for all the advise on the questions. Apart from seeing the horseshoe bend, what are some other places I can visit with kids on March 23? I wanted to do the canyon x tour but looks like they are closed

        1. Hey again, Viks 😉
          You are correct that Antelope Canyon X, along with the other branches of the Antelope Canyons remain closed at this time. Fortunately, there is no shortage of things to see and do in Page, AZ, and the surrounding areas!
          One piece of information I wish you’d supplied is the ages of the children you’re traveling with. If they’re over the age of 5, you might consider touring Antelope Canyon from the waterside by kayak. These depart from Antelope Point Marina, take approximately half a day, and include hiking into the “pre-slot canyon” portion of Lower Antelope on the shoreline of Lake Powell, which is Federal and not Tribal Land. There are several companies offering this type of tour, but the one we’re most familiar with is Hidden Canyon Kayak’s Antelope Canyon Tour.
          If this sort of activity does not appeal, another good alternative to Antelope Canyon is Wire Pass Canyon & Buckskin Gulch. The trailhead is approximately 1 hour’s drive from Page, AZ. You must travel a short distance down the House Rock Valley Road, which you should not attempt if recent weather has been wet. You should also think twice if you’re in a rental car, and go with a guided tour. To get a first-hand look at Wire Pass Canyon, watch this video Look Who’s Blogging | Wire Pass Canyon | Paria Rimrocks Toadstool Hoodoos Trail Note that this video depicts a second hike you might take, time/inclination permitting.
          Other sites open for visitation in the Page/Lake Powell area include, but are not limited to:
          – Page Rim View Trail
          – Glen Canyon Dam/Steel Arch Bridge
          – Hanging Garden Trail & The Chains
          – Glen Canyon Dam/White House Overlook
          – Grand View Overlook Park
          – The “New” Wave and Radio Tower Rock
          – Gunfighter Canyon
          – Wahweap Swim Beach and/or Lone Rock Beach (these are located in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, which requires a $30/vehicle entrance fee, good for one week’s time)
          If you have the time or inclination to venture a short way into Utah, ~20 minutes drive from Page, AZ, you might also hit up the Big Water, UT, Visitors Center & Dinosaur Museum (or you can do this on the way to or from Wire Pass or the Toadstools).
          Hope that helps — good luck and safe travels!
          Alley 🙂

          1. Thank you so much, Alley for your quick response and suggestions/recommendations. Much Appreciated.

          2. Thank you so much, Alley for your quick response and suggestions/recommendations. Much Appreciated. This was very helpful.

      2. Hi Alley, one more question. I’m in Page on 3/22 and am wondering how many hours drive is to see the Grand Canyon as I will be leaving Page on 3/23. I’m staying in flagstaff on 3/23. Do you have other suggestions for accommodations? Also, is Grand Canyon open? Thanks much in advance as it will help me lot of plan my trip.

        1. Hey again, Viks 😉
          First of all, Grand Canyon South Rim is open. For the best quality experience, it is best if you were to stay either at Grand Canyon Village, inside the park, or Tusayan, AZ, ~7 miles outside the park. Flagstaff is OK, but it’s a 90 minute drive each way from there to GC, at a time of year when your days are still relatively short (sunrise 6:25 AM, sunset 6:40 PM).
          The biggest inconvenience right now is going to be the drive from Page, AZ, to the Grand Canyon. Due to the COVID-19 related closure of a critical component of the shortest travel route (AZ64 East from Cameron to Desert View Point), it is now mandatory to drive all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then back up North to GC via US180/AZ64N or I-40/AZ64N. This has turned what is normally ~a 3-hour drive into more along the lines of 5 hours. Seeing as though almost half of your usable daylight hours are going to be consumed by the drive, it makes even more sense to choose accommodations for that night closer to the park so you’re not driving at after sunset. Nighttime driving is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to local roads being very dimly lit, plus the possible presence of deer, elk, and other wildlife that could hike up your risk of an auto accident. Trust me, that’s not something you want to risk in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, freezing cold, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive!
          Hope that helps. Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

          1. Hi Alley,

            I am planning to visit South Rim of GC from Page,AZ on 10th April. Just want to make sure that, when shortest travel route (AZ64 East from Cameron to Desert View Point) is going to open?

          2. Hi Poonam,
            So sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but AZ64 East from Cameron, AZ, to Desert View is expected to remain closed until further notice. Local officials are pushing for it to reopen, but whether their pleas will be heeded remains to be seen.
            Long story short, count on having to detour down through Flagstaff, AZ, then proceed North to the Grand Canyon via US180/AZ64 North or I-40/AZ64 North. That will be ~a 4.5 hour drive for you. I know — yuck.
            If you’re of a mind to “make lemonade out of lemons,” you might take advantage of the opportunity to enjoy the Wupatki/Sunset Crater Scenic Loop Drive just North of Flagstaff, AZ. This will take you past an ancient Sinaguan Pueblo complex (a rather sophisticated one at that!), and a dormant volcano. This will add some time onto an already long trip, but the option is there for you.
            Trip map
            Good luck and safe travels,
            Alley 🙂

    1. Hi Carolyn,
      The parking lot expansion referred to in this article took place over a year ago! So yes, the parking lot is open from sunrise to sunset, which, on April 13th will be 5:50 AM and 7:00 PM respectively. Sorry for the confusion.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  30. Hi Alley,

    Really appreciate your effort in responding with all our questions.

    We are a family of 8 adults and planning to visit Las Vegas from Southern CA for 3 days and another 3 days to see Horshoebend. I’m looking a hotel or airbnb accommodation in Page AZ. I am hoping that you can advise me on what other sceneries we can see without too much hiking as my parents are old. Want to be sure too that our way to Page AZ from Vegas then back to SoCal are all open. Thank you.

    1. Hi Joahna,
      You might encounter some road construction on I-15 through the Virgin River Gorge between Mesquite, NV, and St. George, UT.
      The only road closure that might affect your family significantly is between Page, AZ, and Grand Canyon South Rim. Normally, the drive takes approximately 3 hours, but due to COVID-19, a critical component of the shortest travel route between Page, AZ, and Grand Canyon Village (AZ64 East from Cameron, AZ, to Desert View Point) is closed. This will require you to drive all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then back up North via US180/AZ64N or I-40/AZ64N. This has turned a 3-hour drive into more along the lines of 5 hours. If you are not going to the Grand Canyon, you should be good, but if you’ve never been there, you should at least set aside a day to go there. Everyone should at least once in their lifetime!
      As for activities in the Page, AZ, area that don’t require a lot of high-intensity hiking, there’s
      Glen Canyon Dam/Steel Arch Bridge
      Hanging Garden Trail (~1 mile, relatively flat)
      Grand View Overlook Park
      Gunfighter Canyon
      Wahweap Swim Beach and/or Lone Rock Beach (located in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, which requires a $30/vehicle entrance fee, good for one week’s time)
      Glen Canyon Conservancy Museum
      Big Water Visitors Center & Dinosaur Museum
      If you determine that the Horseshoe Bend Overlook Trail is too much for your parents to manage, you might consider flying over it in a fixed-wing airplane or helicopter. Horseshoe Bend flights depart out of the Page Municipal Airport, weather permitting, and typically in the early morning hours for best light and lack of wind.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Do you think it will be a better idea to maybe spend a night in Flagstaff to see grandcanyon from Las Vegas then drive to Page,AZ for horsehoebend then back to Socal or vice versa? Again,thank you for your advices and patience.

        1. Hi again, Joahna,
          In March, I wouldn’t normally recommend using Flagstaff, AZ, as a “base camp” for visiting the Grand Canyon, but under the current circumstances, I can see why that may appeal. It’s about a 90-minute drive, one way from Flagstaff, AZ, to Grand Canyon South Rim. In mid-March, sunrise occurs just after 6:30 AM and sunset takes place at around 6:30 PM. That gives you roughly 12 hours of daylight to work with. The main priority is ensuring that you do all your driving during daylight hours. Nighttime driving is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to local roads being very dimly lit, and the possible presence of deer, elk, and other wildlife that can ratchet up your risk of an auto accident. You don’t want to risk a collision with a large animal in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, freezing cold, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. Which means that if you’re staying in Flagstaff, AZ, after visiting the Grand Canyon, you’ll need to be sure you’re on the road no later than 5:00 PM. However, staying in Flagstaff, AZ, the night prior to visiting Page, AZ, does offer the advantage of cutting the drive time to the latter down to ~3 hours.
          Hope that helps. Have a wonderful time!
          Alley 🙂

  31. Hi Alley!
    I am thrilled to have found this page. I am needing help with my itinerary, I think. I am seeing road closures but I am unsure if that will affect my trip.
    So, here are our plans in a nutshell…
    Day 1.Arrive early in Las Vegas, rent car, drive to Zion. Spend one night
    Day 2. Either explore Zion a bit and leave by noon, or leave in the morning and go to Bryce for a while. Depart Bryce by 3pm and drive to Page, Az. for the night.
    Day 3. Booked with Hidden Canyon Kayak in Page…depart when tour is over for Grand Canyon (south entrance). Arrive to GC, check in our room and relax/rest of evening.
    Day 4. Explore GC. Spend one more night
    Day 5. Depart GC and head to Las Vegas
    Are there road closures within our itinerary? Do you have other suggestions?
    Thank you so much!

    1. Hi Brenda,
      The one piece of information I really needed is when you were planning to travel. If your trip date is anytime before May 21st, you will encounter a road closure between Page, AZ, and Grand Canyon South Rim. Normally, this drive is about 3 hours, but due to a closure of a critical component of the shortest travel route (AZ64 East from Cameron, AZ, to Desert View Point – COVID-19, ’nuff said), it is currently necessary to detour down to Flagstaff, AZ, then back up North via US180/AZ64N or I-40/AZ64N. This has turned a 3-hour drive into more like a 5-hour drive. Grand Canyon National Park Service is currently planning (meaning wishing, hoping, and praying) that they can convince the Navajo Tribe (on whose land that section of AZ64 sits) to get the road back open by May 21st.
      Otherwise, your trip looks pretty fun, and mostly feasible. The only glaring thing(s) I can point out are:
      1. you’ll probably wish you’d allotted more time for Zion National Park. That’s a huge and beautiful park with lots to see and do. Most visitors prefer to stay in that area for 3-4 days, and still come away feeling as though they’d only scratched the surface. I can pretty much guarantee that you’ll be planning a return trip, which isn’t such a bad thing!
      2. Visiting Bryce as a “pop-by” between Zion and Page is less than ideal. If that’s all you can manage, then I recommend spending the night prior in Kanab, UT, which will put you closer to Bryce (~90 minutes) that morning. The drive to Page, AZ, will then be 2.5 hours. Be sure you are aware of when sunset is that evening because you need to be sure that you’re doing that drive (and all others if possible) when it’s still light out. Nighttime driving is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to local roads being very dimly lit, and the possible presence of deer, elk, and other wildlife that can ratchet up your risk of an auto accident. Between Kanab, UT, and Page, AZ, is particularly bad for that, and you don’t want to risk a collision with a large animal in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive.
      Hope that helps! Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Hi Ally,
        This is my draft plan for the trip from 3/28-4/3. Ideally is to make a circle.
        Is anything we need to revise the plan?
        I originally planned to go to the wave and antelope. But antelope is closed and the wave requires 4 month in advance.:(
        Thank you so much.
        3/29 Vegas to Zion
        3/30 horseshoe bend
        3/31 arches
        4/1 canyon land
        4/2 Bryce
        4/3 home

        1. Hey Stella,
          That itinerary looks pretty fun, and well-planned, but just a trifle rushed.
          Zion, for example, is a huge park that really commands 3-5 days to fully explore and enjoy. I can pretty much guarantee that you’ll be planning a return trip someday, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing 😉 But if you can possibly squeeze in an extra day to spend there, you wouldn’t regret it. Unfortunately, the most logical area to trim some time off would be Moab, UT (Arches/Canyonlands). Here again, 2 days is good, but 4-5 would be better! By taking Moab, UT, off the table this time around, that would free up time to maybe try your hand at the walk-in lottery for The Wave (takes place every morning in Kanab, UT, the day prior to when you wish to hike). Should you strike out on getting a permit, you could still enjoy the day by exploring one of many alternative areas around The Wave that are just as beautiful, but don’t require a permit. White Pocket is the most popular, and for good reason, it’s an absolutely stunning area, but hard to get to. A guided tour comes highly recommended for enjoying and exploring this area in safety. There are about a dozen companies offering such services, but the ones we are most familiar with are Paria Outpost & Outfitters, Dreamland Safari Tours, and Vermilion Adventures.
          So a basic revised itinerary would look like this:
          03/29 Vegas to Zion
          03/30 Horseshoe Bend
          03/31 Try for Wave permit
          04/01 If successful: hike The Wave; if unsuccessful, tour White Pocket or alternate area
          04/02 Bryce
          04/03 Home
          Revised trip map
          Again, just a suggestion. But if you were to leave your trip plan as is, I know you’ll still have a great time! Just keep an eye on the weather (it can still snow that time of year, especially in Bryce) be prepared for drives to be longer than they say on Google maps, and be sure to reserve all hotels and guided tours ASAP.
          Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

          1. You are welcome, Stella 🙂 Have a wonderful trip, and if you get a minute when you return home, write in again and let us know how it went!

  32. Hi Alley,
    Our family( 4 adults & 2 kids 17 & 8) have 3 days ( 3/8 to 3/10) to visit Horseshoe Bend & Grand Canyon NP through South Rim entrance from Phoenix by car.
    Probably add on Flagstaff as well ( to replace the closing of Antelope)
    I did a quick read of other comments and just realize there are issues with road closing.
    Can you please advise a best route for our short road trip, we will leave Phoenix on Monday 3/8 by early afternoon and driving back to Phoenix by Thursday afternoon.
    We’re thinking of overnight @ either Page or Flagstaff and heading out to the Grand Canyon NP early morning & stay there 2 nights.
    This is our first visit to these places, so not sure if the time frame for visit are doable along with the drive.
    TIA!

    1. Hi Tracy,
      Glad you’ve heard about the closure of AZ64 from Desert View Point to Cameron, AZ. We would have hated to see that be an unpleasant surprise as you made your way around!
      As to whether you have sufficient time to see the Grand Canyon and Horseshoe Bend on this trip, the answer is “yes,” but be prepared for some long drives.
      Assuming that 3/8 and 3/10 are not travel days, here’s what I’d recommend:
      March 8th: Drive from Phoenix AZ to Page, AZ (~5 hours), visit Horseshoe Bend on the way into town, overnight in Page
      March 9th: Drive to Grand Canyon South Rim (~5 hours due to the necessity of detouring through Flagstaff), if desired, take Wupatki/Sunset Crater scenic loop drive just North of Flagstaff, that will add ~2 hours onto your drive time, overnight at Grand Canyon South Rim
      March 10th: 2nd day/night at Grand Canyon South Rim (or drive back to PHX in the afternoon)
      March 11th: Drive back to Phoenix (~4.5 hours), fly home Trip map
      If that sounds like too much driving to properly call it a vacation, I don’t blame you a bit. As much as I hate to suggest it, you might save Page, AZ, for a future trip when the Antelope Canyons reopen (we’re wishing, hoping, and praying it will happen by summertime!), and use the extra time to explore Sedona, AZ. That’s a stunning area with lots to see and do, and being only ~2.5 hours from Phoenix, makes for a good last stop for a little chill time on your tour. If you take me up on that suggestion, then plan to hit Grand Canyon South Rim that first day, spend 1 night there, then head down to Sedona, AZ (~2.5 hours from GC South Rim) for 2 nights, then back to Phoenix. Revised Trip Map
      Priority #1 at this point should be getting your lodging booked. Your chosen timeframe is Spring Break for many US schools, so things will be busy, even with the COVID-19 restrictions.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Hi Alley.

        My husband and I will be visiting Horseshoe Bend next week on a week day. This is the week of our school’s Spring Break. What time of day would you say that the parking gets full?

        1. Hi Beth,
          In years past, it’s filled up between 9:00 AM-10:00 AM. Don’t know if that will hold true this year, hopefully you won’t have any problem when you visit!
          Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

        2. Hi Beth, how was experience during your visit to horseshoe bend? I’m traveling with 2 kids on March 22 and am wondering what time is good? Can we walk and take some good pictures by horseshoe bend?

          1. Hi Viks!
            Beth has probably already traveled and is most likely no longer monitoring this site. I can tell you, however, that Horseshoe Bend will be open for visitation on March 22nd (barring some totally bizarre occurrence LOL). Operational hours for the parking lot are sunrise to sunset, which are 6:24 AM and 6:40 PM respectively.
            Allow approximately 2 hours to park your vehicle, walk out to the rim, take photos, then walk back to your vehicle.
            Good luck and safe travels,
            Alley 🙂

      2. Hi!
        My father and I are coming from California the week of March 21st with the hopes of being able to see Horseshoe Bend. I know that parking can be tricky so any recommendations would be greatly appreciated. I don’t want to miss out on this opportunity if possible. Thank you in advance.

        1. Hey Andrea!
          Coming from California, hopefully, you and your Dad are planning on spending a night or two in Page, AZ. If so, then I would recommend visiting in the hours just after sunrise. That timeframe typically has fewer people to contend with. Otherwise, simply go when it’s convenient for you. Operating hours of the parking lot are sunrise to sunset. With the parking lot expanded last year, and people still a bit wary of travel due to COVID-19, I doubt you’ll have much of a problem finding a spot.
          Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

  33. Hi there! I plan on visiting Horseshoe Bend on March 21st, driving from Zion to the Grand Canyon. Just wondering how parking has been recently and how busy it has been with COVID? Can you please let me know if there are a few ideal times of day to try and visit in order to get a parking spot in later March? Also, in the case that there are no parking spots, it looks like all the shuttle services/tour operators in Page are indefinitely suspended. Are there any other options to get to Horseshoe bend if the lot is full? Maybe a parking lot that’s further away where we can walk a farther distance? Thank you!

    1. Hi Lindsay,
      Since we are still in shoulder season, the parking lot at Horseshoe Bend has not been so busy that people have trouble finding a parking space. That could be a different story in late March what with that being the beginning of Spring Break, but if you time your visit for the hours just after sunrise, you shouldn’t have a problem.
      As for the tour operators and shuttle services, you are correct that they are on temporary hiatus due to COVID-19. Unfortunately we don’t know when they should reopen, so if on the off-chance you find the Horseshoe Bend parking lot full, you’ll simply need to come back and try again.
      Sorry I couldn’t be more specific than that.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  34. Hello, your information is incredible, thank you very much! Based on your website, I have learned of a few more stops we need to take!

    You seem to be closely tied into the area, any insight or rumors on when the Navajo Nation will reopen? We are visiting first week of July 2021 and Page, Monuments Valley, and Four Corners are all on the list. I am wondering if you think it’ll be open by the Summer?

    1. Hey Mark,
      I am indeed closely tied to the tourism industry in Northern Arizona/Southern Utah, including the Navajo Tribe, which means I’ve heard the same rumors you have. The operative word being “rumors.” Official word maintains that the Antelope Canyons, Monument Valley, and the Four Corners will stay closed until further notice. Unofficially, our associates in the Navajo tourism community are crossing fingers and toes that they can get back to business by mid-April.
      I would suggest monitoring the official website of the Navajo Nation Parks & Recreation Department. You might also visit our companion site, http://www.AntelopeCanyon.AZ and request to be place on our priority e-mail list so you can be notified the minute the decision to reopen comes down!
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  35. Hi Alley, I’ve been reading all your fantastic advice and hope that you may be able to help. We will be doing a 1-week trip at the end of March, arriving in Vegas and heading out to the Grand Canyon South Rim for 2 days and then we are looking to drive north to the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park with a stop at either Red Canyon or Wire Pass Canyon. I’ve been reading that AR64 is closed through the Indian reservations, but I haven’t been able to confirm that via other sites. Is this still the case?
    I appreciate all your help!

    1. Hi Rebecca!
      Thanks for your compliments, I am sorry for the delay in responding, I was on an out-of-town work assignment over the weekend.
      You are correct in that AZ64 from Desert View Point to Cameron, AZ, is closed at this time, and is expected to remain closed at the time of your visit. Projected opening date is late May, and that’s being optimistic.
      Therefore, to drive from Grand Canyon South Rim to the Kanab, UT, area, you will need to drive all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then bounce back up North via US89. This has turned what is normally about a 4-hour drive into more like 6 hours.
      In light of this, I would recommend modifying your plans slightly: drive as far as Page, AZ, hit Horseshoe Bend on the way into town (it’s still open), spend the night in Page, AZ, then hit Wire Pass or Red Canyon and Coral Pink Sand Dunes the following day. The drive from Page, AZ, to Kanab, UT, is an hour and change in length.
      Due to the access roads to Wire Pass and Red Canyon being unpaved, I would recommend you consider taking a guided tour to these areas. Many Kanab, UT, tour companies offer combination tours which include the Coral Pink Sand Dunes.
      Hope that helps! Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  36. Hello there – I wanted to be at Horseshoe Bend before sunrise/be able to stay after sunset. Is that possible or are there limited hours with the paid parking? If I get there pre-sunrise will there be gates that are open?
    Thank you!

    1. Hey Glenn,
      The “official” operating hours of the Horseshoe Bend parking lot are sunrise to sunset. If you were to arrive before sunrise, it’s very likely you would not be able to access the overlook because the gates of the parking lot would be closed. To be 100% certain that this would be the case, I’d recommend contacting the City of Page, who are contracted to oversee the parking lot and fee collection. Their phone # is (928) 645-8861.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

        1. Glen, were you able to get in before sunset on your trip? We are here now and want to try. It is my favorite time of day there.

          1. Hey Andy,
            I imagine Glenn has already traveled, but we’d be interested in hearing about your experience!
            Alley 🙂

  37. We will be traveling from Grand Canyon South rim toward Zion National Park on June 2.. We plan to stop by Horseshoe Bend. We will be in 2 RVs.. one is 30′ and the other is 45′ plus towing a car. Can parking accommodate the larger RV? What time does it open? I understand that AZ64 is closed. Any hope it will open by June? We also would like to visit Antelope Canyon. I do know that it is currently closed also. If it is open, how far away is it from Horseshoe Bend? Do you know if they have adequate parking for the larger RV?

    1. Hi Alva,
      Both Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon tour companies have space to accommodate larger RV’s, but you’ll find that you’ll have an easier time of it by getting there early, maybe ditch the dinghy. Horseshoe Bend is open from sunrise to sunset, and in June, it’s a good idea to try and hit the overlook right at sunrise to take advantage of cooler temperatures and smaller crowds.
      As for whether the Antelope Canyons will be open by June, we honestly don’t know. We’re hoping so, but in your case, you should have a “Plan B” in mind in the event the closure continues through the summer. The alternatives we recommend that are not affected by the closure of Navajo Reservation lands are Red Canyon/aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon and Wire Pass Canyon/Buckskin Gulch.
      With twists and turns on par with the Antelope Canyons, Peek-A-Boo is a short but memorable walk offering up classic slot canyon scenery, and some unique geological features. Red/Peek-A-Boo is the also one of the most family-friendly slot canyons open to visitation right now. While a guided tour is not required to get to Peek-A-Boo, we strongly recommend that you take one, because while the walk through the canyon itself is not difficult, the drive to get there is. Even experienced 4×4 drivers get stuck out there on a daily basis, and if you’re in an RV, forget it. That would leave you on the hook for a very expensive rescue, should you need one, and having to foot the bill for any damage you’d sustain. Tour companies in Kanab, UT, that can get you to Peek-A-Boo Canyon are:
      – Dreamland Safari Tours, (435) 412-1790, http://www.dreamlandtours.net
      – TC Tours, (435) 668-5262, http://www.slotcanyontourskanab.com
      – Kanab Tour Company, (435) 644-5525, http://www.kanabtourcompany.com
      – Forever Adventure Tours, 435-644-5700, http://www.foreveradventuretours.com
      – Grand Circle Tours, (928) 691-0166, http://www.vermilioncliffs.net
      Tour of Peek-A-Boo Canyon last approximately 4 hours.
      If you think you’d be up for something a little more rugged, Wire Pass Canyon & Buckskin Gulch would definitely fill the bill. Wire Pass Canyon is a photogenic two-part slot canyon that is short enough for intermediate-level hikers to enjoy, yet offers the option to delve further into Buckskin Gulch for those wanting more of a challenge. The walk to the entrance of the initial slot is via a typically dry streambed, which is usually full of deep sand. An 8-10’ drop a short distance into the slot canyon is one reason why Wire Pass Canyon usually deters parties traveling with young children, the elderly, or individuals afraid of heights, however, a makeshift ladder was recently placed there to aid in navigating this obstacle. As the canyon walls become higher and closer together, they suddenly open up as the second slot connects with the Buckskin Gulch. If you’ve had enough at this point, you can simply turn around and head back to your vehicle. If you’d like to explore further, you can easily make a half-day hike out of the immediate area around the confluence with the Buckskin. Access to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch is off US89 between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT, on the House Rock Valley Road, an unpaved road that is not recommended for RV’s to travel on. Here again, a guided tour will get your family to Wire Pass Canyon and back in one piece, and turn you onto features you might have missed trying to find your own way. Companies offering guided tours to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch include:
      – Detours American West, 480-633-9013, http://www.detoursamericanwest.com
      – Paria Outpost & Outfitters, 928-691-1047, http://www.paria.com
      – Grand Staircase Discovery Tours, 928-614-4099, http://www.grandstaircasediscoverytours.com
      Hope that helps! Good luck, safe travels, and Happy New Year!
      Alley 🙂

    2. I want to come up this week. Will it be slow time of year and easy to park? Will I see snow around the bend from the recent snow storms?

      1. Hey Rod!
        You shouldn’t have any trouble parking at Horseshoe Bend, but it’s unlikely that you’ll see much snow. Weather in the next few days is predicted to rise up into the 50’s, which will melt most of the snow that occurred with last week’s storms.
        East Canyon weather
        Good luck and safe travels,
        Alley 🙂

  38. Hi Alley,

    Thank you for your help to us all on this thread! Your time and effort here is greatly appreciated.

    I am currently visiting the Grand Canyon (got here Wednesday), and I am deciding on whether to come by to spend a day in the Page, AZ area before heading back to Los Angeles.

    Is the Monument valley scenic drive route open? If it is i think ill come by! Im just not sure if it is cos I read that it is on Navajo tribal lands and they currently observing a lockdown on all their national parks and the like.

    Thank you !
    Tolu

    1. Hi Tolu!
      Hope you’re having a great time at the Grand Canyon.
      Unfortunately, the Monument Valley Scenic Drive remains closed by order of the Navajo Tribe. You can still see many of Monument Valley’s beautiful rock formations driving through on US163, but I still wouldn’t recommend going all the way there from the Grand Canyon at this time. You see, a critical component of the shortest travel route between the Grand Canyon and Monument Valley, AZ64 from Desert View Point to Cameron, is also closed by the Navajo Tribe. This means that to go from Grand Canyon South Rim to Monument Valley, you’d have to travel all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then back North on US89 to US160 and US163. This has turned what is normally a 3.5 hour drive to more like 5.5-6 hours. Another important consideration is the Navajo Tribe wishes to minimize or eliminate all interaction between outsiders and reservation residents, so this means, no stopping at any restaurants, gas stations, hotels, or grocery stores.
      If you are looking for another place to spend an extra day, we would love to see you in Page, AZ. Even with the Antelope Canyons closed, there is still plenty to see and do, plus Horseshoe Bend remains open. Bear in mind that you’d have to take the same detour through Flagstaff, which turns a 2.5-3 hour drive into more like a 4.5-5 hour drive, and part of it would take you through the Navajo Reservation (just North of Flagstaff to just South of Page), so you want to make sure your vehicle is fully fueled and that you have adequate snacks and water to tide you over until you get to Page, AZ. If you were to spend the night in Page, AZ, the drive back to LA the following day would take anywhere from 9-10 hours. If that doesn’t appeal, Las Vegas, NV, would be a good spot to break up the drive. If you take me up on that, you could make the short detour through the stunning Valley of Fire State Park just North of town. The drive to LA from Las Vegas would be ~4-5 hours. Trip map
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  39. Hi there! My husband surprised me with a trip to the Grand Canyon from Feb 5-7. However, we will be flying into Vegas, then driving over to AZ. We know it will be a short, adventure packed, loads of driving trip! But I wanted to ask about your current COVID restrictions… will we be able to visit the Grand Canyon South Rim (cause we are bringing dogs), and then head over to Horseshoe Bend without any park/road closures? *We are renting an SUV … thank you so much for all your help!! We visited AZ in late 2019 and early 2020, but didn’t make it up to the Grand Canyon, so hoping we will for this trip!!

    1. Hi Laura,
      What a wonderful surprise! Unfortunately I do have a bit of bad news: there is a significant road closure and some other restrictions in effect that might affect your plans somewhat. More on that in a minute.
      So it takes ~5 hours to drive from Las Vegas, NV, to Grand Canyon South Rim. The only lodge in the park that is pet-friendly is Yavapai Lodge. They do have some restrictions regarding leaving pets in the room unattended, etc., so be sure you are familiar with those before committing. Normally, if pet-friendly lodging weren’t available, I’d say call the Grand Canyon Kennel, but unfortunately, that’s closed due to COVID0-19. Otherwise, the only pet boarding facility somewhat nearby, should you need it, is the Grand Canyon Railway Pet Resort in Williams, AZ, 60 miles South of the park. To utilize this service, your dogs’ vaccines must be current.
      Otherwise, there are some restrictions on food services, tours, and other facilities due to COVID-19. To familiarize yourself with these fully, suggest you read the NPS website on Grand Canyon National Park.
      Not knowing if 02/05-02/07 includes your fly-in/fly-out dates, I’m not certain if you will have sufficient time to visit Horseshoe Bend this time around. Page, AZ, the community where Horseshoe Bend is nearest to, is ~150 miles from Grand Canyon South Rim. Normally, the drive from GCSR to Page, AZ, takes ~3 hours. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, a key component of the shortest travel route — AZ64 from Desert View Point to Cameron, AZ — has been closed by order of the Navajo Indian Tribe. That means to get from GCSR to Page, AZ, requires that you drive all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then slingshot back North on US89 to Page, AZ. This has turn what is normally a 3-hour drive into more like a 5-hour drive. The drive back to Las Vegas, NV, would then take roughly 5 hours. Trip map
      If you can spend 2 nights at the Grand Canyon and at least 1 night in Page, AZ, that would be ideal. Page, AZ, does have several pet-friendly hotels. If you don’t have that much time to give, then prioritize the Grand Canyon, enjoy your stay there, and save Page, AZ, for another trip, preferably one when the Antelope Canyons (which are also closed) reopen and you can spend 1 week or more and really enjoy all that Northern Arizona and Southern Utah have to offer! Ultimate 7-Day Itinerary in Northern Arizona & Southern Utah
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy New Year!
      Alley 🙂

  40. Hi Alley ! I’m planning a visit with a few friends in the middle of January . My plan was to visit horseshoe bend and antelope canyon but I heard antelope canyon is closed .any other place around horseshoe bend that you will recommend? Do I need to make reservations? .thank you

    1. Hey Marvin,
      You are correct that the Antelope Canyons remain closed due to COVID-19. Horseshoe Bend has stayed open, and can be visited without prior arrangement. Simply arrive at your convenience during normal business hours (sunrise to sunset), pay the one-time $10/vehicle parking fee, and enjoy at your leisure.
      If seeing a slot canyon remains high on your priority list — and we wouldn’t blame you a bit if it does! — there are alternatives nearby that are not subject to the closure of the Navajo Reservation: Wire Pass Canyon & Buckskin Gulch near Paria, UT, and Red Canyon/aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon near Kanab, UT.
      Wire Pass Canyon is a photogenic two-part slot canyon that is short enough for intermediate-level hikers to enjoy, yet offers the option to delve further into Buckskin Gulch for those wanting more of a challenge. After paying your self-permitting fee at a well-marked kiosk, the walk to the entrance of the initial slot is via a typically dry streambed, through deep sand. An 8-10’ makeshift ladder a short distance into the slot canyon is one reason why Wire Pass Canyon may not be appropriate for those traveling with young children, the elderly, or individuals afraid of heights. As the canyon walls become higher and closer together, they suddenly open up as the second slot connects with the Buckskin Gulch. If you’ve had enough at this point, you can simply turn around and head back to your vehicle. If you’d like to explore further, you can easily make a half-day hike out of the immediate area around the confluence with the Buckskin. Look for some bighorn sheep petroglyphs dating back hundreds, maybe thousands of years! Access to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch is off US89 between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT, on the House Rock Valley Road, which is unpaved. While it is accessible to 2WD vehicles much of the time, if recent weather has brought any moisture whatsoever, the HRVR can turn into a muddy, impassable mess. Parties in rental cars should think twice about attempting this road since off-road driving is strictly prohibited by most rental car companies. A guided tour will get your family to Wire Pass Canyon and back in one piece, and turn you onto features you might have missed trying to find your own way. Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT based companies offering guided tours to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch include:
      – Detours American West, 480-633-9013, http://www.detoursamericanwest.com
      – Paria Outpost & Outfitters, 928-691-1047, http://www.paria.com
      – Grand Staircase Discovery Tours, 928-614-4099, http://www.grandstaircasediscoverytours.com
      Located between Kanab and Mt. Carmel Junction, Utah, approximately 90 minutes from Page, AZ, Red Canyon/aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon has twists and turns on par with the Antelope Canyons. This short but memorable walk features classic slot canyon scenery (including the occasional light beams in the summertime), as well as some unique geological features found nowhere else. While a guided tour is not required to get to Peek-A-Boo, we strongly recommend that you consider taking one, because while the walk through the canyon itself is usually not difficult, the drive to get there can be. 4WD vehicles with adequate clearance are a definite must, with tire pressure lowered to accommodate potentially deep sand. Even then, people get stuck out there on a daily basis. If you’re driving a rental car, forget it! You will void your insurance the minute your tires part with the pavement, which means you’d be on the hook for a very expensive rescue, should you need one, and have to foot the bill for any damage you’d sustain. There are several reputable companies to choose from in Kanab, UT, that can get you to Peek-A-Boo Canyon, including:
      – Dreamland Safari Tours, (435) 412-1790, http://www.dreamlandtours.net
      – TC Tours, (435) 668-5262, http://www.slotcanyontourskanab.com
      – Kanab Tour Company, (435) 644-5525, http://www.kanabtourcompany.com
      – Forever Adventure Tours, 435-644-5700, http://www.foreveradventuretours.com
      – Grand Circle Tours, (928) 691-0166, http://www.vermilioncliffs.net
      Other activities you can pursue near Horseshoe Bend and Page, AZ, include, but are not limited to:
      – Page Rim View Trail
      – Glen Canyon Dam/Steel Arch Bridge
      – Hanging Garden Trail & The Chains
      – Glen Canyon Dam/White House Overlook
      – Grand View Overlook Park
      – The “New” Wave and Radio Tower Rock
      – Wahweap Swim Beach and/or Lone Rock Beach (located in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, which requires a $30/vehicle entrance fee, good for one week’s time)
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy New Year!
      Alley 🙂

  41. Hello,

    When will Antelope Canyon be open this year? I was hoping to visit Antelope and Horse Shoe bend sometime in February of this year.

    1. Hi Romana,
      The good news: Horseshoe Bend is open. It’s one of a few Northern Arizona attractions that never closed during the COVID-19 pandemic.
      The short answer to the question about Antelope Canyon’s reopening is, we don’t know. According to one of the local tour outfitters, Spring 2021 is being optimistic, so I wouldn’t count on being able to visit in February 🙁
      If seeing a slot canyon remains high on your priority list — and we wouldn’t blame you a bit if it does! — there are alternatives nearby that are not subject to the closure of the Navajo Reservation: Wire Pass Canyon & Buckskin Gulch, and Red Canyon/aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon.
      Wire Pass Canyon is a photogenic two-part slot canyon that is short enough for intermediate-level hikers to enjoy, yet offers the option to delve further into Buckskin Gulch for those wanting more of a challenge. The walk to the entrance of the initial slot is via a typically dry streambed, which may feature deep sand. An 8-10’ ladder a short distance into the slot canyon is one reason why Wire Pass Canyon may not be appropriate for those traveling with young children, the elderly, or individuals afraid of heights. As the canyon walls become higher and closer together, they suddenly open up as the second slot connects with the Buckskin Gulch. If you’ve had enough at this point, you can simply turn around and head back to your vehicle. If you’d like to explore further, you can easily make a half-day hike out of the immediate area around the confluence with the Buckskin. Look for some bighorn sheep petroglyphs dating back hundreds, maybe thousands of years! Access to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch is off US89 between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT, on the House Rock Valley Road. Hikers are required to pay a self-permitting fee at the kiosk by the trailhead. Fair warning: the House Rock Valley Road is unpaved! While it is accessible to 2WD vehicles much of the time, if recent weather has brought any moisture whatsoever, the HRVR can turn into a muddy, impassable mess. Parties in rental cars should think twice about attempting this road since off-road driving is strictly prohibited by most rental car companies. A guided tour will get your family to Wire Pass Canyon and back in one piece, and turn you onto features you might have missed trying to find your own way. Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT based companies offering guided tours to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch include:
      – Detours American West, 480-633-9013, http://www.detoursamericanwest.com
      – Paria Outpost & Outfitters, 928-691-1047, http://www.paria.com
      – Grand Staircase Discovery Tours, 928-614-4099, http://www.grandstaircasediscoverytours.com
      Located between Kanab and Mt. Carmel Junction, Utah, approximately 90 minutes from Page, AZ, Red Canyon/aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon has twists and turns on par with the Antelope Canyons. This short but memorable walk features classic slot canyon scenery (including the occasional light beams in the summertime), as well as some unique geological features found nowhere else. While a guided tour is not required to get to Peek-A-Boo, we strongly recommend that you consider taking one, because while the walk through the canyon itself is usually not difficult, the drive to get there can be. 4WD vehicles with adequate clearance are a definite must, with tire pressure lowered to accommodate potentially deep sand. Even then, people get stuck out there on a daily basis. If you’re driving a rental car, forget it! You will void your insurance the minute your tires part with the pavement, which means you’d be on the hook for a very expensive rescue, should you need one, and have to foot the bill for any damage you’d sustain. There are several reputable companies to choose from in Kanab, UT, that can get you to Peek-A-Boo Canyon, including:
      – Dreamland Safari Tours, (435) 412-1790, http://www.dreamlandtours.net
      – TC Tours, (435) 668-5262, http://www.slotcanyontourskanab.com
      – Kanab Tour Company, (435) 644-5525, http://www.kanabtourcompany.com
      – Forever Adventure Tours, 435-644-5700, http://www.foreveradventuretours.com
      – Grand Circle Tours, (928) 691-0166, http://www.vermilioncliffs.net
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy New Year!
      Alley 🙂

  42. Alley, you seem to be the resident expert for this part of the world. I have a few questions for you.

    We have a week long trip planned for this spring through Southern Utah and Northern AZ and I understand that some of the places we hoped to visit are closed due to Covid…Monument Valley and Canyon de Chelly. But I am curious to see if the highways are still open. The last few days of our trip go through Navajo Reservation areas and I want to make sure my plans are viable.

    We plan to be driving up 191 from I-40 to Blanding, Utah, is that highway open? What about any services along the way on Navajo lands? Gas/restroom/food?

    We then plan to drive from Blanding to Page via 163 to 160 or 98. I know Monument Valley is closed, but 163 is open, correct? Gas/restroom/food open? If all these roads are open, which would be the better choice to Page, 160 or 98? 160 looks to be a bit longer, but I am curious which might be more scenic and safer.

    And lastly, are both the Utah and AZ route of highway 89 between Page and Kanab open? I think maybe the AZ route would be a bit more scenic, although a few miles out of the way from Page. Just want to make sure it is open.

    Thanks

    1. Hi Patricia and thanks for the compliments 🙂
      The only road that’s closed to through traffic is AZ64 from Desert View Point at Grand Canyon South Rim to Cameron, AZ. All the roads you’re proposing to take are open and passable. As for whether gas, restrooms, and food service will be accessible on the reservation, don’t count on that. In fact the Navajo Tribe is discouraging outsiders from stopping on Navajo Tribal Lands at all if they can help it, so make sure your vehicle is fully fueled, and that you have some food and water to tide you over until you get to your off-reservation destination.
      It will take you approximately 3.5 hours to drive from I-40 to Blanding, UT, via US191. The drive from Blanding to Page, AZ, via US163/160 to AZ98 will take roughly the same amount of time. I would not recommend going all the way around via US160/US89 to Page, AZ. That would tack an extra hour onto your drive.
      Both routes between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT, are open, and if you wanted to go around via the AZ route, be sure to stop at Lees Ferry and enjoy the short hike to the Lonely Dell Ranch, and grab lunch at Cliff Dweller’s Restaurant. The food is amazing, and so is the view! For dessert, pick up some made-from-scratch cookies at the Jacob Lake Inn. Time/inclination permitting, you might also visit the fascinating Pipe Springs National Monument. Trip map
      One last suggestion: things could change between now and Spring depending on how well COVID-19 gets contained, and what sort of weather we might get. Before you get ready to travel, be sure to check the status of all roads just to be on the safe side.
      Whatever you decide, be sure to book all hotels and guided tours well in advance of your arrival.
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy New Year!
      Alley 🙂

      1. Thanks so much Alley. Our trip is planned for the first week of May for our 30th anniversary. Since we can’t go on a South Pacific island vacation as originally planned because of Covid…we will just head off to one of our favorite places…the Desert South West. I have already made the hotel reservations and all can be cancelled up to the day before if Covid or weather issues arise. Although we are disappointed that a few of our planned stops (Canyon de Chelly and Monument Valley, both of which we have visited on previous trips) will be unavailable due to Covid, there is still plenty to see and do in the area. I wasn’t worried at all about the roads being closed until I read here that AZ 64 was closed. That lead to a minor panic that maybe others would be as well…hence my questions. Thanks again for your assistance.

        1. Hi Patricia,
          You’re welcome! Hope you have a wonderful time. Feel free to write in again if you need to bounce any more ideas off us.
          Take care,
          Alley 🙂

  43. Hi Alley,

    Thank you so much for the detailed responses and helpful information! I wanted to ask for your opinion. My husband and I plan to go to Las Vegas January 14-January 17 and planned to take a day trip to either the Grand Canyon or Horshoe Bend and maybe stop by or drive by a couple of other beautiful places. Due to AZ64 being closed, would it affect the drive from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon or Las Vegas to Horshoe Bend? Please let me know what you think the best option would be, we have never been to Arizona before.

    Thank you,

    Katy

    1. Hi Katy,
      With one day to work with, and seeing as though you’ve never been to Arizona before, I would recommend visiting the Grand Canyon this time around. The trip takes ~4.5 hours, one way. The drive would take you past Hoover Dam, as well as Route 66 towns of Kingman, Seligman (the real-life inspiration for the town of Radiator Springs in the “Cars” movie), and Williams, home of the Grand Canyon Railway.
      The closure of AZ64 from Desert View Point to Cameron, AZ, wouldn’t affect you, per se, but one thing that you do have working against you is daylength, or lack thereof. Sunrise in Las Vegas occurs shortly before 7:00 AM and sunset takes place at around 4:45 PM (Arizona time is one hour ahead of Nevada). As you can see, that’s less than 10 hours of daylight, and you’re already proposing to spend that long behind the wheel of your car. That doesn’t give you much time for sightseeing, and you want to at least make it as far as Kingman, AZ, by sundown. Driving at night around the immediate vicinity of the Grand Canyon is strongly discouraged due to local roads being very dimly lit and the possible presence of deer, elk, and other wildlife that could increase your risk of an accident. Trust me, that’s not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, freezing cold, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. Once you get as far as Kingman, AZ, there’s a fairly sizeable light dome emanating from the Las Vegas metro area.
      Long story short, if a day trip is your only alternative, you really don’t have time to “stop by or drive by a couple of other beautiful places.” You need to concentrate on getting to the Grand Canyon and making the most of your time there.
      A better idea? Spend the night so you can experience a sunset and/or sunrise at the canyon! Grand Canyon hotels
      If your time is limited as you indicate, the Grand Canyon should take priority over Horseshoe Bend. It’s one of the “Big Three” National Parks, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and a “bucket list” attraction. Save Horseshoe Bend for another trip when you have more time to spend, and COVID-19 is no longer making travel difficult.
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy New Year!
      Alley 🙂

      1. Thank you so much for the response! Would you see the south rim is the best to visit if it is out first time?

  44. Hello. What time does the parking lot entrance open? We are planning to enjoy the sunrise at horseshoe bend tomorrow morning!

  45. Hi Alley,

    I am planning 2 day trip outside of Las Vegas. My current itinerary is: dec 27th morning drive from Las Vegas to Hoover dam -> Grand Canyon-> drive to the hotel near horseshoe bend.
    Dec 28th: sunrise at horseshoe bend and then drive to Zion national park(no
    Hikes) After that stay near Zion national park.

    29th morning : drive towards Las Vegas visiting valley of fire

    Do you think this is doable. I read few of your comments and you have explained very well. It would be much appreciated if you could guide me.

    1. Hi Swati,
      Unfortunately, your plan for day 1 is not realistic.
      It takes approximately 5 hours to drive from Las Vegas to Grand Canyon South Rim. Normally, it would take you ~3 hours to drive from Grand Canyon South Rim to Horseshoe Bend, but because of COVID-19, a critical section of the normal travel route, which lies on Navajo Indian Reservation land, is closed to outsiders. It is therefore necessary to drive from Grand Canyon South Rim all the way down to Flagstaff, then proceed North on US89 to Page, AZ (where Horseshoe Bend is located). This rather long detour has turned a 3-hour drive into more like a 5-hour drive. Not something most of us would want to face after having made a drive of equal distance already.
      Another factor working against you at the time of year you’re visiting is daylength. In late December, it’s very short, with sunrise in Las Vegas, NV, taking place at around 6:30 PM and sunset in Arizona occurring at ~5:15 PM. That’s less than 11 hours of daylight, and you’re already proposing to eat up 9-10 hours of it driving. If you’re thinking “I’ll just do the rest of the drive at night,” please think again. Driving at night is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to the fact that local roads are very dimly lit, and you might encounter deer, elk, or other wildlife, which can hike up your risk of an accident. That’s not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, freezing cold, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive.
      A better plan would be to stay overnight at the Grand Canyon on your first day’s travels, then head to Page, AZ, on the 28th. Unfortunately, that doesn’t give you any time to hit Zion, which is just as well, because Zion is a huge park which really deserves at least 3-4 days to do it justice. Save it for another time, preferably when it’s warmer and you can enjoy more hikes.
      The drive from Page, AZ, back to Las Vegas, NV, going direct would be ~4.5-5 hours. Add another 90 minutes to 2 hours onto your drive time to do the loop through Valley of Fire.
      Trip map
      Sorry to be the bearer of some bad news here, but we’d rather see you enjoy your trip rather than make it a constant death march to get to your next destination. Whatever you decide, be sure to book all hotels and guided tours in advance of your arrival.
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Hi Alley,

        Thank you so much for such a detailed response. One more question. 28th : Grand Canyon to horseshoe bend and then Zion national park( spend little time) and stay near Zion on that night.

        29th morning drive around monument valley and then go to Vegas?

        We have a check-in to a hotel in Las Vegas on 29th.

        Let me know if this is doable ?

        Thank you.

        1. Hey again, Swati!
          Sorry to be a buzz kill again, but your plan for the 29th is a no-can-do.
          If you’re going to stay at Zion on the night of the 28th (which I don’t recommend per my previous reply), you’d be facing a 5-hour drive to get to Monument Valley. Right now, the Navajo Indian Tribe (on whose land Monument Valley sits) is actively discouraging people, namely outsiders, from traveling on the reservation. Their citizens have been affected in disproportionately high numbers by COVID-19 and the don’t want to risk further exposure through tourists. Even if the Navajo Tribal Parks were not closed, you would then be facing a 7-hour drive back to Las Vegas, here again, on a day when you don’t have much daylight to work with. Trip map
          There might still be a way you can see Monument Valley without actually going there: fly over it out of Page, AZ. Fixed-wing airplanes depart out of the Page, AZ, Municipal Airport (another reason why you might want to stay there and not Zion), contingent on good weather and a certain number of passengers traveling. Aerial sightseeing tours (no landing) take approximately 90 minutes and morning is the best time to fly for optimal light and the least amount of wind. For more information, visit Westwind Air Service or call 480-991-5557, or 1-888-869-0866.
          Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

      2. Hi. Is Horseshoebend open New Years Day? On website it says it is closed for Christmas and New Years day. Thanks!

        1. Hey Thomas,
          I sure wish I knew what website you were referring to, because the “semi-official” Horseshoe Bend website, run by the City of Page, AZ, makes no mention of holiday closures. In fact, they imply quite the opposite:

          “Holidays are very busy at Horseshoe Bend! During these busy times, should the parking lot fill to capacity, the entrance to the Horseshoe Bend parking lot will be closed. Visitors will be directed to return at a later time to see if the lot has been reopened. Though we have a nice, large lot which can usually accommodate even the busiest of days, there may still have an occasional day where we have more visitors than parking.”

          You should be able to visit without a problem during the normal parking lot opening hours, between sunrise and sunset.
          Good luck, safe travels, and Happy New Year,
          Alley 🙂

      1. Hey Swati,
        You absolutely can make a nice leisurely drive and see some interesting sights between Horseshoe Bend and Las Vegas!
        A short distance over the border of Utah, in the town of Big Water (~20 minutes from Page, AZ), you’ll find the Big Water Visitors Center and Dinosaur Museum . If anyone in your party is interested in paleontology, they’ll love the exhibits of dinosaur specimens unearthed in the local area.
        Further up US89 between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT, is the Paria Rimrocks/Toadstool Hoodoos Trail. The trailhead is located at Mile Marker 19, and a relatively easy hike (with a slight scramble) takes you to some gravity-defying rock formations. The second half of this YouTube video details what’s involved, plus the little boy narrating is just SO cute 😉
        A short distance West of the town of Fredonia is Pipe Springs National Monument, an interesting glimpse into the lives of early settlers, including LDS missionaries and Native Americans, and the conditions they overcame to eke out a life in a rather hostile environment.
        Trip map
        Hope that helps! Have a wonderful trip,
        Alley 🙂

  46. Hi Alley,

    Wow! Your comments have been very helpful! Thank you so much.

    I am planning a trip where I leave Grand Canyon on December 28th and head to Page for 2 days. Is it still true that the 64 is closed so I should assume this will be a 5 hour drive instead of a 3 hour drive? I have been looking at your recommendations for what to do in Page since Antelope Canyon is closed. We plan on going to Horseshoe Bend, any other recommendations would be amazing!

    Thanks again!

    Corinne

    1. Hey Corinne, thank you for visiting, and thanks for your compliments!
      Unfortunately, that section of AZ64 is still closed from Desert View to Cameron, AZ, so that 3-hour drive is still a 5-hour drive 🙁
      Horseshoe Bend, fortunately, is one of a few attractions that never closed during this whole COVID-19 mess, so you won’t have any problem visiting this spectacular overlook of the Colorado River! The parking lot is open from sunrise to sunset, and you pay a one-time $10 parking fee for standard passenger vehicles.
      As for other places you might visit, check out:
      Page Rim View Trail
      Glen Canyon Dam/Steel Arch Bridge
      Hanging Garden Trail & The Chains
      Glen Canyon Dam/White House Overlook
      Grand View Overlook Park
      The “New” Wave and Radio Tower Rock
      Wahweap Swim Beach and/or Lone Rock Beach (located in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, which requires a $30/vehicle entrance fee, good for one week’s time; or the National Park Pass works)
      Big Water Visitors Center & Dinosaur Museum
      Naturally, the above is a small sampling of what you might enjoy, but is by no means an exhaustive list. For more recommendations, visit the Page/Lake Powell Tourism Hub upon arrival. If you talk to Gordon, tell him that Alley from Horseshoe Bend sent you 🙂
      Have a wonderful visit, and a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
      Alley

    1. Hi Leah!
      Barring super-bad weather or any other extreme circumstances, Horseshoe Bend will be open on New Year’s Day 🙂
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley

  47. Hi Alley,

    We are planning to visit Horshoe Bend on December 31st or Jan 1st, not certain yet, from Springdale, UT on a day’s visit and then return back to Springdale. We are primarily here for Zion National Park and want to include Horshoe Bend as a day’s visit. Do you think it is feasible to do a round trip without staying over at Page, AZ? Would parking be a problem on these dates at the parking lot? I know it’s hard to answer definitively but wanted to know your thoughts on it. We are primarily interested in the overlook only since the canyons down below are closed.

    Thanks,

    1. Hey Dan,
      Visiting Horseshoe Bend as a day trip out of Springdale, UT, is possible, but less than ideal at the time of year you’re visiting.
      It takes ~2.5 hours, each way, to drive from Springdale, UT, to Page, AZ. You should allot at least 90 minutes to 2 hours to park at Horseshoe Bend, walk to the rim, take photos, then walk back to your vehicle. As for how full (or not) the parking lot will be, that remains to be seen, but generally, just after sunrise is when you’ll have the least problem finding a spot. Although the Antelope Canyons, another popular Page, AZ, attraction, are closed, there are other sites you might want to visit while there, including, but not limited to:
      Page Rim View Trail
      Glen Canyon Dam/Steel Arch Bridge
      Hanging Garden Trail & The Chains
      Glen Canyon Dam/White House Overlook
      Grand View Overlook Park
      The “New” Wave and Radio Tower Rock
      Wahweap Swim Beach and/or Lone Rock Beach (located in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, which requires a $30/vehicle entrance fee, good for one week’s time)
      Big Water Visitors Center & Dinosaur Museum
      Another fun little stop you might want to take advantage of on the way to or from Page, AZ, is the Paria Rimrocks and Toadstool Hoodoos. Situated between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT, on US89, the trailhead is near mile marker 19. This is a relatively easy hike to some cool rock formations. Here again, this could use up about 2-3 hours of your time, but most find it time well spent.
      Long story short, if you could spend the night in Page, AZ, that would free up more time to explore. If you are locked into your room reservations in Springdale, UT, the key to making a day trip work will be keeping an eye on the time and being aware of when sunset occurs. Driving at night is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to the fact that local roads are very dimly lit, and you might encounter deer, elk, or other wildlife, which can hike up your risk of an accident. That’s not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, freezing cold, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. Around the New Year’s holiday period, sunrise occurs at ~7:45 AM and sunset takes place just after 5:00 PM.
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays!
      Alley 🙂

      1. Hi Alley,

        I have been reading all your comments, suggestions, and recommendations, and found them to be wonderful. We are currently in Page and following some of your go to sites. How and where can we do some star gazing?

        1. Hey Abel,
          Apologies for not replying to your inquiry sooner, I was on an out-of-town work assignment over the weekend!
          For optimal star gazing, it is best to get outside of Page, AZ’s surprisingly sizeable artificial light dome. About a 20 minute drive West on US89 over the border of Utah, you’ll find a small town called Big Water. A short distance down an unpaved road across a small creek bed, which is usually passable to 2WD vehicles provided recent weather has been dry, is an area locals affectionately refer to as “The Moon” because of its predominantly gray rock formations and desolate, other-worldly appearance. Click here to view a rough map of how to get there from Page, AZ, and word of warning, NP230 is NOT in Kanab! If you’ve gone that far, you’ve definitely gone too far.
          If you’d prefer to stay a little closer to civilization, Lone Rock Beach, just on the border of Arizona and Utah, is a good spot also. Just be careful not to drive too far into the sand so you don’t get stuck. “The Moon” is also pretty cool to see in the daytime, and has a fascinating history! You could piggy-back a drive there with a visit to the Big Water Visitors Center and Dinosaur Museum.
          Hope that helps! Have a great rest of your trip, and a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year,
          Alley 🙂

        1. Dan,
          You are welcome! Have a wonderful trip and if you get a minute when you return home, let us know how things went 🙂
          Merry Christmas and Happy New Year,
          Alley 🙂

  48. I’ll be in Page Dec 28th and 29th. Is it possible to park my e-bike at the Horseshoe Bend parking area? Will I just be charged the same fee as a motorcycle? Are there any bike racks there?

    thanks,

    mike

    1. Hi Mike,
      Yes, you may park your e-bike at Horseshoe Bend. You would simply be charged as if you were riding a motorcycle.
      There are bike racks at the Horseshoe Bend parking lot, which is open from sunrise to sunset.
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays,
      Alley 🙂

  49. Hello Alley !
    I was reading your recent answers and was so amazed by your detailed answers and kindness.
    My name is Joon, and I am a US ARMY soldier. My wife and I are trying to go on a short relaxing trip after COVID hit to las vegas and grand canyon.

    We will be staying in las vegas until 30th December and will depart in the early morning of that day and come back to las vegas at night of 31th.

    We booked a motel on 30th right next to the Horseshoe bend. We are trying to go to hoover dam, south rim and horseshoe bend at least and come back.

    Do you have any suggestion when to depart and how to make the schedule? is there another place you suggest that we should visit within that 2 day trip?

    I saw you mentioned also about road closing in Navajo Tribal Land area, could you kindly help us with a google trip map if you can along our trip?
    We don’t need to hike a lot or stay in one place long this time.

    Thank you so much and always be safe !!

    1. Hi Joon,
      Thanks so much for your service, and your compliments, both are much appreciated! Which is why it pains me to have to tell you that your plan is not realistic. You simply don’t have enough time to pull it all off.
      It takes ~5 hours to drive from Las Vegas, NV, to Page, AZ (for Horseshoe Bend), so that will occupy the better part of your day on the 30th.
      Normally, it would take you ~3 hours to drive from Page, AZ, to Grand Canyon South Rim. However, the closure of AZ64 from Cameron, AZ, to Desert View Point, an integral component of that route, is closed by order of the Navajo Tribe. Therefore, it is now necessary to travel from Page, AZ, all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then back up North to the Grand Canyon via US180/AZ64 or I-40/AZ64. This has turned what used to be a 3-hour drive into a 5-hour drive. You would then be facing a 4.5-5 hour drive back to Las Vegas, longer if you were to include a photo stop at Hoover Dam (I understand the visitor center and and exhibit halls are closed, but you can still drive over it). Not my idea of a “relaxing” vacation. Trip map
      The way I see it, you need to a. free up another day to do all this or b. choose between going to Horseshoe Bend or the Grand Canyon. If adding another day to your trip isn’t an option and you’ve never been to the Grand Canyon, then it should take priority over Horseshoe Bend. It is most desirable to stay inside the park, but I wouldn’t be surprised if those accommodations are all booked up. You might still be able to find availability in Tusayan (7 miles outside the park) or Williams (60 miles South of the park). Grand Canyon hotels
      If you’d rather not cancel your existing hotel reservation in Page, AZ, and you’re still locked into returning to Las Vegas by December 31st, you could return to Las Vegas via Zion National Park. That will add another 90 minutes-2 hours to your drive, and you’d be limited to seeing it as a “drive by,” but mileage-wise, it’s not too far a detour out of your way.
      Another option for a neat place to visit on your way back to Las Vegas would be the stunning Valley of Fire State Park. It’s just Northeast of Las Vegas near the town of Overton, NV, and winter is a nice time to visit since the weather isn’t ghastly hot like summertime!
      Trip map
      Sorry to be the bearer of bad news here, but I’d rather you go into your trip prepared rather than get hit with unpleasant surprises.
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays!
      Alley 🙂
      P.S. Oops! Almost forgot: whatever you decide as far as your trip route, overnight stays, etc., go, you need to make sure you do the majority of your driving during daylight hours. Driving at night is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to the fact that local roads are very dimly lit, and you might encounter deer, elk, or other wildlife, which can hike up your risk of an accident. That’s not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, freezing cold, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. At the time of your trip, sunrise occurs at around 7:45 AM, sunset takes place just before 5:30 PM (in Arizona/Utah; Nevada will be one hour behind).

  50. I’m staying in Sedona for two days, and have two days to make a trip to see something (anything!) beautiful. I was thinking of driving up to Horseshoe bend and staying the night. Is this advisable? Or is there somewhere closer to Sedona you’d recommend for a one night trip before going back to Sedona?

    1. Hi Elizabeth,
      Horseshoe Bend is located near the town of Page, AZ, which is ~a 3-hour drive, one-way, from Sedona. Assuming that you are visiting in the near future, you should be aware that the Antelope Slot Canyons are closed due to COVID-19, so these won’t be an option, but there is still enough to see and do in the area to fill up an overnight visit.
      Other areas you might consider are Grand Canyon South Rim, which is ~a 2.5 hour drive, each way from Sedona, or Petrified Forest/Painted Desert, which is also ~a 2.5 hour drive from Sedona.
      Another option? Simply remain in Sedona! Sedona is a huge and stunning area and many people report staying there for 4-5 days and still feeling as though they’d only sampled a small part of all the area has to offer.
      Hope that helps! Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays,
      Alley 🙂

  51. Hi Alley,
    I’m planning the following itinerary and would like your expert opinion due that it seems covid is affecting some of the driving routes
    Dec 26th: arriving to Las Vegas
    Dec 27th 1: driving early in the morning from Las Vegas to Zion National Park, doing the scenic route explore a couple hours and leave around 3 or 4 PM to Kanab or Page for 2 nights stays.
    Dec 28th: since Antelope Canyon is closed, we are planning to go to peek a boo in the morning hopefully the early morning tour and drive to visit horseshoe bend in the afternoon.
    Dec 29th: check out the hotel early morning and drive from to the Grand Canyon south rim, then after drive to Sedona for a 1 night stay.
    Dec 30th: spend the day in Sedona, still debating what to do from there (any suggestions are welcome) and late afternoon day drive to Phoenix.
    Dec 31st: leaving from Phoenix airport in the morning.

    open to do some itinerary changes , thank you!

    1. Hey Sergio,
      Your itinerary looks pretty fun and well-planned, except when you get to December 29th, where you plan to visit the Grand Canyon as a “drive-by” on the way to Sedona. That won’t work. Here’s why:
      Normally the drive from the drive from Page, AZ, to Grand Canyon South Rim takes ~3 hours. Unfortunately, that’s not the case right now, because an integral component of the shortest travel route (AZ64 from Cameron, AZ, to Desert View Point) is on Navajo Tribal Land, and it has been closed since COVID-19 hit. This means that all visitors are required to drive all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then back up North to the canyon via US180/AZ64 (or I40/AZ64). This has turned a 3-hour drive into a 5-hour drive. The drive from Grand Canyon South Rim to Sedona would then be another 2.5-3 hours. Another consideration: You’re also visiting at a time of year when your days are going to be very short: sunrise occurs just before 7:40 AM and sunset takes place at around 5:15 PM. That’s less than 10 hours of daylight, and you’re already proposing to use up 7-8 hours of it driving? Not my idea of a vacation.
      By the way, nighttime driving is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to the fact that local roads are very dimly lit, and you might encounter deer, elk, or other wildlife, which can hike up your risk of an accident. That’s not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, freezing cold, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive.
      I would recommend staying at the Grand Canyon on the evening of the 29th, then driving down to Sedona the following day.
      I know that seeing Sedona as a “drive by” on your way to Phoenix is less than ideal, in fact, as much as I hate to suggest it, you might even want to skip Sedona this time around. Sedona is a big and stunning area with lots to see and do. You really need 3 days bare minimum to do it justice, and even then, people report staying 5-7 days and still feeling as though they’d only scratched the surface of all the area has to offer. If you prefer to still include Sedona in your itinerary, know that 1. it takes ~3 hours to drive there from Grand Canyon South Rim, then ~2.5 hours to drive to Phoenix, AZ; and 2. I can pretty much guarantee that you will be planning a return trip to the area when you can spend more time!
      A couple of other tips: try to get lodging in Kanab, UT, on the night of December 27th. That will put you closer to Peek-A-Boo Canyon. If you were to stay in Page, AZ, you’d have to backtrack another ~80 miles back to Kanab to tour Peek-A-Boo. After touring Peek-A-Boo, drive down to Page, AZ, to stay overnight, then you could hit Horseshoe Bend bright and early the next morning before heading down to the canyon.
      At the time of year you’re visiting, the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive will be closed to private vehicles. To access that area, which is the main sightseeing area of the park, you have to use a shuttle. Due to COVID-19, the Zion Canyon Shuttle is operating at reduced capacity, which means you now have to purchase tickets in advance. I wouldn’t be surprised if tickets for your travel date are already sold out, but you can go to Recreation.gov to check for cancellations. If all that sounds like a pain in the backside, frankly it is, but the good news is there are still sights you can visit just by traversing the park on UT9 from Springdale to Kanab, including the visitors center, Watchman Trail, Pa’rus Trail, the long tunnel, Canyon Overlook Trail, Checkerboard Mesa, plus the chance to see the mountain sheep, and many pullouts along the way where you can stop for the view, or hike down into the washes.
      Trip map
      Whatever you decide, be sure to book all hotels and guided tours ASAP, you’re visiting during one of the most popular travel weeks in the winter season, COVID-19 notwithstanding.
      Hope that helps! Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays,
      Alley 🙂

      1. We are planning a trip to AZ from March 6-14, flying into and out of Phoenix. We will spend first and last night of our trip there. We want to go to Sedona, Horseshoe Bend, The Grand Canyon, Bryce and Zion. What would be the best way to do this trip as far as where to go first, etc.? We are driving. Of course we would love to go to Antelope Canyon, but I’m not going to hold my breath with the ongoing pandemic.

        1. Hey Denise!
          Good call not to count on the Antelope Canyons being open during your vacation, because chances are they won’t be. However, if seeing a slot canyon remains high on your wish list (which we wouldn’t blame you for one bit!), there might still be a way to salvage that part of your vacation. More on that in a minute…
          Using Phoenix, AZ, as your staging city, with the knowledge that the first and last days of your trip dates will be spent there, that gives you 7 full days to work with, which is great. As to what order you visit the parks in, I’d recommend getting the longer drive out of the way first, then landing in Sedona, AZ, for a couple days of “chill time” before heading back to reality.
          Here’s what I’d recommend:
          March 7th: Drive from Phoenix, AZ, to Kanab, UT (~6 hours), visit Horseshoe Bend in Page, AZ, on the way (time/desire permitting). Overnight in Kanab, UT
          March 8th: Day trip to Zion National Park (~30 minutes each way from Kanab, UT). ***FYI, at the time of year you’re visiting, the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive will be most likely be closed to private vehicles. To access that area, which is the main sightseeing area of the park, you have to ride a shuttle. Due to COVID-19, the Zion Canyon Shuttle is operating at reduced capacity, which means you now have to purchase tickets in advance. If that sounds like a pain in the backside, frankly it is, but the good news is there are still sights you can visit just by traversing the park on UT9 from Kanab, UT, to Springdale, UT, including Checkerboard Mesa, the Canyon Overlook Trail, the long tunnel, Watchman Trail, Pa’rus Trail, and the Visitors Center. Plus you might get a chance to see the mountain sheep, or stop at one of the many pullouts along the way where you can enjoy the view, or hike a ways down into the washes, weather and trail conditions permitting.*** Drive back to Kanab, UT, for the night
          March 9th: Drive to Bryce Canyon National Park (~90 minutes from Kanab, UT), overnight in Bryce Canyon area (or make it a day trip from Kanab, UT, if no lodging is available near the park) One Day In Bryce Canyon
          March 10th: Drive to Flagstaff, AZ (~5.5 hours) via Marble Canyon/Lees Ferry (avoids some backtracking), have lunch at Cliff Dwellers Lodge, the food there is amazing! Overnight in Flagstaff, AZ.
          March 11th: Day trip to Grand Canyon South Rim (~90 minute drive [one way] from Flagstaff), spend 2nd night in Flagstaff, AZ
          March 12th-13th: Drive to Sedona (~45 minutes from Flagstaff), spend 2 nights. Perfect two day itinerary in Sedona, AZ
          Trip map
          Should the Antelope Canyons remain closed at the time of your visit, one slot canyon not subject to the closure of Navajo Indian Tribal Parks is Red Canyon/aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon near Kanab, UT. With twists and turns on par with the Antelope Canyons, this short but memorable walk features classic slot canyon scenery, as well as some geological features unique to it. Technically, a guided tour is not required to get to Peek-A-Boo, however, we strongly recommend that you take one, because while the walk through the canyon itself is not difficult, the drive to get there can be. People get stuck on this route on a daily basis. Reputable tour companies who can help you get to Peek-A-Boo Canyon are:
          – Dreamland Safari Tours, (435) 412-1790, http://www.dreamlandtours.net
          – TC Tours, (435) 668-5262, http://www.slotcanyontourskanab.com
          – Kanab Tour Company, (435) 644-5525, http://www.kanabtourcompany.com
          – Forever Adventure Tours, 435-644-5700, http://www.foreveradventuretours.com
          – Grand Circle Tours, (928) 691-0166, http://www.vermilioncliffs.net
          Also, if you’re wondering why I’m suggesting you base yourself in Flagstaff, AZ, to visit the Grand Canyon, it’s because as of right now, an integral component of the shortest travel route to the South Rim (AZ64 from Cameron, AZ, to Desert View Point) is on Navajo Tribal Land, and it has been closed since COVID-19 hit. This means that all visitors are required to drive all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then back up North to the canyon via US180/AZ64 (or I40/AZ64). Coming from Bryce Canyon, this has turned what would have been a 5-hour drive into a 7-hour drive. You might as well just stay in Flagstaff, AZ, and visit the South Rim as a day trip. If by some miracle AZ64 from Cameron to Desert View reopens by the time you visit, you should plan on driving from Bryce to Grand Canyon South Rim, overnight in the park or Tusayan, then drive down to Sedona, AZ, from there the next day, which would take ~3 hours.
          I hope this helps. If you have more questions, feel free to write in again if you need to bounce more ideas off us!
          Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays,
          Alley 🙂
          P.S. Oops! Almost forgot: whatever you decide as far as your trip route, overnight stays, etc., go, you need to make sure you do the majority of your driving during daylight hours. Driving at night is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to the fact that local roads are very dimly lit, and you might encounter deer, elk, or other wildlife, which can hike up your risk of an accident. That’s not something you want to chance in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, freezing cold, where cell service is spotty (if you can get any bars at all), and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. At the time of your trip, sunrise occurs at around 6:45 AM, sunset takes place just before 6:30 PM.

          1. Good night Alley!

            We are a family that we’ll pass the Christmas break in Las Vegas, Great Canyon. We will in Las Vegas on Dec 23. till Dec 30. We want to visit Horseshoebend and area.
            Our plan it’s to stay 29-39 in Williams and Great Canyon but for the rest of the days we are looking for suggestions.
            Horseshoebend it’s open? Because I see that Antelope it’s close.
            Thank you in advance

          2. Good morning Rafael!
            Firstly, Horseshoe Bend is open; it is one of a few attractions in Northern Arizona that never closed during the COVID-19 pandemic. You are correct in that the Antelope Canyons are closed, but if you still want to see a slot canyon, there might still be a way for you to do so. More on that in a minute…
            To properly visit Horseshoe Bend and some of the other attractions in the immediate area that are still open, you should plan on spending the night in Page, AZ. Page, AZ, is approximately a 3-hour drive, one way, from Williams, AZ. Before you make the trip, make sure your vehicle is fully fueled and that you carry some snacks and water with you. The reason for this is because most of the drive will take you through the Navajo Indian Reservation, and they discourage outsiders from stopping on their lands or interracting with tribe members due to COVID-19.
            After visiting Page, AZ, you might plan a stop in Kanab, UT (~70 minutes from Page, AZ), so you can tour Red Canyon/aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon. With twists and turns on par with the Antelope Canyons, this short but memorable walk features classic slot canyon scenery, as well as some unique geological features. While a guided tour is not required to get to Peek-A-Boo, we strongly recommend that you take one. While the walk through the canyon itself is not difficult, the drive to get there can be. 4WD vehicles with adequate clearance are a definite must, with tire pressure lowered to accommodate potentially deep sand. Even then, people get stuck all the time, plus if you’re driving a rental car, you will void your insurance the minute your tires part with the pavement, which means you’d be on the hook for a very expensive rescue, should you need one, and have to foot the bill for any damage you’d sustain. Tour companies that can get you to Red Canyon are based in Kanab, UT:
            – Dreamland Safari Tours, (435) 412-1790, http://www.dreamlandtours.net
            – TC Tours, (435) 668-5262, http://www.slotcanyontourskanab.com
            – Kanab Tour Company, (435) 644-5525, http://www.kanabtourcompany.com
            – Forever Adventure Tours, 435-644-5700, http://www.foreveradventuretours.com
            – Grand Circle Tours, (928) 691-0166, http://www.vermilioncliffs.net
            Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays!
            Alley 🙂

      2. Thank You Alley so much!
        Definitely will be considered your advice and make some adjustments to our itinerary.
        Happy Holidays as well and stay safe.

        1. You are welcome, Sergio.
          Happy Holidays to you, too, and if you get a minute when you return home, write in again and let us know how things went!

    1. Hi Catherine,
      Horseshoe Bend is one of a few attractions in Northern Arizona that has never closed during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is open from sunrise to sunset. You pay a one-time $10 parking fee to visit.
      As for whether it’s been busy, yes, it has been relatively busy, but with some reduction in visitor numbers, which is to be expected at this time of year.
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Good morning! 1st time traveling to Horseshoe Bend and The Grand Canyon. Now that parking fees are required, where do we pay for the parking fee?

        1. Hi Mia!
          The Horseshoe Bend parking lot is located near mile marker 545 of highway US89 about 5 miles South of the town of Page, AZ. There is a small booth there that is very clearly signed and visible. It is open from sunrise to sunset.
          For Grand Canyon South Rim, you pay a $30 per vehicle entrance fee that is good for 1 week’s time at the NPS Fee station on AZ64, which again, is very easy to spot. The entrance gate there is also manned from sunrise to sunset, but the gates remain open 24/7.
          FYI, there is another entrance station on the Eastern border of the park, near Desert View Point, but that is closed due to COVID-19, along with the section of AZ64 on Navajo Indian Tribal Lands between DV and Cameron, AZ. This means that you have no option but to enter and exit the Grand Canyon via the Southern entrance gate. If you are driving from Grand Canyon South Rim to Horseshoe Bend (or vice versa), this means that you’ll have to drive all the way back to Flagstaff, AZ, then back up North via US89 (for Page) or I-40/AZ-64 (for the Grand Canyon). This has turned what used to be approximately a 3-hour drive into a 5-hour drive. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news if you weren’t aware, but we’d rather you not be blindsided by what would definitely be an unpleasant surprise.
          Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays,
          Alley 🙂

  52. Hi Alley,
    I am staying in Flagstaff arriving 11/20 and staying until 11/22. We will be coming from L.A. Is it feasible to visit the Grand Canyon and Horseshoe Bend within that time span considering changes due to Covid? Thank you.

    1. Hi Lauren,
      It takes ~1.5 hours, each way, to drive from Flagstaff, AZ, to Grand Canyon South Rim. It takes ~2.5 hours, again, that’s one way, to drive from Flagstaff, AZ, to Page, AZ, where Horseshoe Bend is located. If you were thinking you’d visit both attractions in one day, unfortunately, that’s not realistic in light of conditions in place due to COVID-19. Normally, the drive from Grand Canyon South Rim to Page, AZ, takes ~3 hours, but due to the closure of a critical component of the normal travel route, it is now necessary to detour all the way back to Flagstaff, then proceed North on US89 to get to Page, AZ. This has turned what used to be a 3-hour drive into a 5-hour drive. 1.5 (Flagstaff to GC) + 5 (GC to Page) + 2.5 (Page to Flagstaff) = 9 hours of driving on a day where you only have about 10 hours of daylight to work with in the first place. All driving in this part of the U.S. must be done during daylight hours if at all possible due to local roads being very dimly lit, plus the possible presence of large wildlife such as deer and elk, as well as free range livestock such as cattle and even wild horses, ratchets up your risk of an accident. You don’t want to chance a collision with a large animal in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, extremely cold (nighttime temps are dipping down below freezing in the higher elevations), where cell service is spotty, and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive.
      Long story short: you need to take two separate days to explore Grand Canyon South Rim and Horseshoe Bend. If one full day is all you’ll have, then prioritize the Grand Canyon and save Horseshoe Bend for another visit. Whatever you decide, be sure to book your lodging in advance.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  53. Hello

    Is there any hikes possible to do (3 miles or less, no more than 6) to see landscapes such as the ones we would see in Anteloppe canyons, cause i just learned that they are closed until end of year and I was planning to come next week to the area.
    Many thanks for your advices

    1. Hi Flore,
      Sorry that you’ve been hit with an unpleasant surprise regarding the closure of the Antelope Canyons. If you’re able to hike distances of 3-6 miles, an alternate you would probably enjoy is Wire Pass Canyon and/or the Buckskin Gulch.
      Wire Pass Canyon is a photogenic two-part slot canyon that is short enough for intermediate-level hikers to enjoy, yet offers the option to delve further into Buckskin Gulch for those wanting more of a challenge. The walk to the entrance of the initial slot is via a typically dry streambed, which may feature deep sand. An 8-10’ drop a short distance into the slot canyon is one reason why Wire Pass Canyon may not be appropriate for those traveling with young children, the elderly, or individuals afraid of heights. As the canyon walls become higher and closer together, they suddenly open up as the second slot connects with the Buckskin Gulch. If you’ve had enough at this point, you can simply turn around and head back to your vehicle. If you’d like to explore further, you can easily make a half-day hike out of the immediate area around the confluence with the Buckskin. Look for some bighorn sheep petroglyphs dating back hundreds, maybe thousands of years! Access to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch is off US89 between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT, on the House Rock Valley Road. Hikers are required to pay a self-permitting fee at the kiosk by the trailhead. Fair warning: the House Rock Valley Road is unpaved! While it is accessible to 2WD vehicles much of the time, if recent weather has brought any moisture whatsoever, the HRVR can turn into a muddy, impassable mess. Parties in rental cars should think twice about attempting this road since off-road driving is strictly prohibited by most rental car companies. A guided tour will get your family to Wire Pass Canyon and back in one piece, and turn you onto features you might have missed trying to find your own way. Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT based companies offering guided tours to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch include:
      – Detours American West, 480-633-9013, http://www.detoursamericanwest.com
      – Paria Outpost & Outfitters, 928-691-1047, http://www.paria.com
      – Grand Staircase Discovery Tours, 928-614-4099, http://www.grandstaircasediscoverytours.com
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Good morning, does horseshoe Bend remain open during the second wave of COVID-19? I live in Phoenix and was planning on coming up to horseshoe Bend on Monday, November 16.

  54. Hey Hey! Wanted to get your feedback on my trip idea with a friend coming up! We are flying into Phoenix (getting in around 10 am) and planning on getting a rental car and driving from the airport immediately to the Grand Canyon (at the south entrance) exploring for a while and staying in Williams for the night! We were then going to drive the next day to Horse shoe bend and stay out there for the day and stay in Page that night! We are prepared for some heavy driving, but I wanted to know if this sounded feasible and what type of park passes we should be buyiing ahead of time? Is the annual pass a good idea? Thank you!

    1. Hey Hey Lyndsey!
      First off, the Grand Canyon requires visitors to pay a $35/vehicle entrance fee, which is good for 1 week’s time. You can simply pay the fee upon arrival at the park, or purchase a digital pass through Recreation.gov. For Horseshoe Bend, a one-time $10/vehicle parking fee is assessed by the City of Page, and presently cannot be purchsed in advance. The annual National Park Pass does not work at this area, either, since fees are assessed by the local city government. The parking lot at Horseshoe Bend is open from sunrise to sunset. As for the America The Beautiful Federal Lands Acces Pass, at $80, it may not make much sense to purchase if the Grand Canyon and Horseshoe Bend were the only two parks on your “wish list” for this trip. If you were doing the typical week-long Grand Circle Loop trip that included other parks such as Zion, Bryce Canyon, Arches/Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, etc., then it would more than pay for itself under those circumstances. However, if you plan on visiting these or at least two other National Parks within one year’s time of purchasing the annual pass, then you might go ahead and pick that up on this trip. Here again, you can buy the ATB pass through Recreation.gov
      Assuming that your trip is coming up here in the next few days or weeks, you might need to make a few modifications to your trip plan. If your flight does arrive on time in Phoenix, you will still be looking at at least another hour to 90 minutes at the airport to collect your luggage and get your rental car. It will then take another half hour or so to make your way out of the city, so let’s say, you’ll be on the road in earnest by 11:30 AM, optimistically. You’re then facing about a 5-hour drive to Grand Canyon South Rim. While that may not sound so bad so far, if your trip is taking place in the near future, you have one significant factor working against you: daylength. In November, it’s short, with sunset occurring at about 5:15 PM on average. Even if you were to get on the road by 11:00 AM, that would put you at the Grand Canyon at 3:30-4:00 PM. That leaves a little over one hour of daylight left for sightseeing, then an hour’s drive back to Williams in the dark, when you risk running into a deer, elk, or other large nocturnal animal.
      IMO it would be better to just drive to Williams on the day of your arrival, relax for the evening, then drive to Grand Canyon South Rim the following morning so you have a good chunk of the day to spend sightseeing. The drive to Page, AZ, would normally take ~3 hours, but due to a critical component of the normal travel route being closed due to COVID-19, it is now necessary to detour all the way down to Flagstaff, AZ, then back up North on US89 to Page. This detour has turned a 3-hour drive into a 5-hour drive. In light of these issues, you might simply stay a 2nd night in Williams after sightseeing at the South Rim, then make the drive up to Page, AZ, the next morning when you’ve had a chance to rest. The drive from Williams, AZ, to Page, AZ, takes ~3 hours. The trip from Page, AZ, to Phoenix, AZ, takes ~5 hours.
      Hoep that helps. Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. hello Alley, im planning a roadtrip from Denver to las Vegas… with a few stops.
        first day: I´ll drive to Moab visiting Arches, deadhorse point and canyonland and stay there.
        second day: I was planning monumental valley, antilope but as is closed, I reorganized and I thing visiting capitol reef, peek A boo, bryce canyon and sleep at kanab.
        third day : thinking to visit horseshoe bend and then drive to the gran canyon. and finally around 3 pm take to Las Vegas
        *Every day I´ll be on the road aprox 630am . any advice? thanks !

        1. Hi Carolina,
          Sorry to have to tell you, but this plan is not realistic.
          It takes approximately 6 hours to drive from Denver, CO, to Moab, UT. You need at least 2 days there to even scratch the surface of Arches, Canyonlands, Dead Horse Point, etc.
          On that second day, you won’t have time to tour Red Canyon/Peek-A-Boo since it will take you at least 7 hours to drive from Moab, UT, to Kanab, UT, with stopovers at Capitol Reef and Bryce Canyon. Tours of Peek-A-Boo Canyon take ~4 hours.
          The third day, again, you’re seriously underestimating your drive times. It takes ~70 to drive from Kanab, UT, to Page, AZ. Normally, it takes ~3 hours to drive from Page, AZ, to Grand Canyon South Rim, but due to the closure of AZ64 from Cameron, AZ, to Desert View Point, it is now necessary to detour down through Flagstaff, AZ, then back up North via US180/AZ64 to Grand Canyon South Rim. This has turned a 3-hour drive into a 5-hour drive. You’re then facing another 5-hour drive from Grand Canyon South Rim to Las Vegas.
          If you want to accomplish your original trip plan, you’ll need to carve out more time to do it — at least another 2 days.
          If 3 days is truly all you have to spend driving from Denver to Las Vegas, your best bet is to get there via the quickest route possible, or as close as possible to it. Fortunately, you can still hit Moab, UT, if you want. You won’t be able to see all there is to see, so you’ll definitely want to plan a future visit when you can spend more time. Even though Monument Valley is closed, you can still drive through that way and get some good views, you’ll just need to do so without stopping as the Navajo Tribe want to discourage as much interraction with outsiders as possible. As much as I hate to say it, you’re better off skipping the Grand Canyon this time around due to that long detour being required, but there might still be a way for you to see it. More on that in a minute.
          So here’s what I would suggest:
          Day 1: Drive from Denver, CO, to Moab, UT (~6 hours), overnight in Moab
          Day 2: Drive from Moab, UT, to Page, AZ, via Monument Valley (~6 hours) ***You’ll need to do this portion of the drive without stopping at any time on the Navajo Indian Reservation, so be sure your vehicle is fully fueled and that you are carrying water and at least some snacks so you don’t have to stop for food until you get to Page, AZ*** Visit Horseshoe Bend, overnight in Page, AZ
          Day 3: Drive from Page, AZ, to Kanab, UT, take first AM tour of Peek-A-Boo Canyon (4 hours), drive on to Las Vegas (~4 hours from Kanab) ***OR*** take early morning fixed-wing airplane flight over the Grand Canyon from Page Municipal Airport, drive on to Las Vegas afterward (~5 hours)
          Map of the trip
          Whatever you decide, be sure to time all driving so that you’re doing the majority of it in daylight. Nighttime driving is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to local roads being very dimly lit, plus the possible presence of large wildlife such as deer and elk, as well as free range livestock such as cattle and even wild horses, ratchets up your risk of an accident. You don’t want to chance a collision with a large animal in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, extremely cold (nighttime temps are dipping down below freezing in the higher elevations), where cell service is spotty, and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. Driving back to Las Vegas, you can more easily get by doing the back half of it by night because the communities of St. George, UT, Mesquite, NV, and Las Vegas, NV, have pretty good sized light domes, plus the freeway is better lit over that stretch.
          Hope that helps. Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays!
          Alley 🙂

  55. Hi! Thank you so much for all of your information. I am trying to plan a Roadtrip currently for the first week or two of December. Unfortunately this is the only time I am able to make the trip. Initially I wanted to include Bryce Canyon and Kodachrome Basin, but I really do not want to end up caught in bad weather. My other options include: Valley of Fire, Horseshoe Bend/surrounding area, and Sedona. Do you think these other locations would be safe- driving/weather-wise- during these weeks? Also, we have a dog with us- which I know doesn’t fare well in Bryce Canyon. Any tips on other locations that may be better due to weather would be much appreciated! Thank you!! 🙂

    1. Hi Carly,
      Your chances of getting “caught up in bad weather” are certainly greater at Bryce Canyon and/or Kodachrome Basin, but you could just as easily encounter inclement weather in the Valley of Fire, Horseshoe Bend, or Sedona. While “White Christmases” are common in the higher elevations, it’s too soon to tell what this winter will be like in Northern Arizona and Southern Utah. Monitoring local weather about 2 weeks before you get set to travel will give you the best idea of what to expect. If you do encounter a snowstorm, your best bet is to stay put, wherever you happen to be, and wait it out.
      Meanwhile, I recommend that you make hotel reservations at all the sites on your “wish list.” If you end up having to cancel due to weather, the hotel management is usually pretty understanding under those circumstances and will let you do so with minimal to no penalty.
      RE: bringing a dog to Bryce Canyon, or any National Parks, they are typically allowed on paved trails only, and must be leashed at all times. Owners must also be prepared to pick up after them.
      Hope that helps! Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays,
      Alley 🙂

  56. Hi Alley,

    Me and my friend are planning a 3 day trip Nov 19-22 we plan to drive back on the 22nd. We are driving down from Los Angeles and wanted to stop at Grand Canyon, Horseshoe bend, and Zion? We wanted to do Antelope Canyon as well but we heard its closed.
    We originally planned to visit Grand Canyon first, arriving the 19th around noon. After visiting the GC we wanted to drive to Page, AZ and stay there that night. Then Friday the 20th visit horseshoe bend early morning, then not sure what else is there to do there before heading out to Zion that day. Saturday 21, we planned to visit Zion the narrows and im sure that takes the whole day. Most likely stay another night there, then Sunday head back.

    What recommendations do you have for us? Is our plan doable?

    1. Hi Maggie,
      Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but your plan is not realistic.
      First off, it takes approximately 8 hours to drive from LA to Grand Canyon South Rim. You would have to get a VERY early start out of LA in order to make it to GC by noon. The drive from Grand Canyon South Rim to Page, AZ, normally takes ~3 hours, but at the present time, a critical component of the shortest travel route (AZ64 from Desert View to Cameron, AZ) on the Navajo Reservation is closed due to COVID-19. This means that to get from GC South Rim to Page, AZ, you must drive all the way back to Flagstaff, AZ, then up North to Page, AZ, on US89. This has turned a 3-hour drive into more like a 5-hour drive, and you’re already proposing to spend 8 hours behind the wheel that day as it is. Map of trip
      Another factor working against you at that time of year is daylength; in late November, it’s short, with sunrise taking place just after 7:00 AM and sunset occurring around 5:15 PM. This barely gives you 10.5 hours of daylight to work with, and you’ll have already eaten up 8 of those hours driving over from LA. That doesn’t leave much time for sightseeing, plus you want to be sure that you do all driving in Northern Arizona during daylight hours. Nighttime driving is strongly discouraged in this part of the U.S. due to local roads being very dimly lit, plus the possible presence of large wildlife such as deer and elk, as well as free range livestock such as cattle and even wild horses ratchets up your risk of an accident. You don’t want to chance a collision with a large animal in an unfamiliar area that’s pitch black, freezing cold (nighttime temps will be quite low at the time of year you’re traveling), where cell service is spotty, and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive. Long story short, if you want to visit the Grand Canyon, best to spend the night there, then move on to Page, AZ, the following morning.
      You are correct that the Antelope Canyons are closed, so touring there won’t be an option. If seeing a slot canyon remained high on your wish list, a good alternative would be Red Canyon aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon in Kanab, UT, ~70 minutes from Page, AZ. This short but memorable walk features scenery comparable to the Antelope Canyons, and some rock formations and other attributes unique to it. Although the slot canyon walk isn’t that difficult, the drive to get there is, so we recommend again a guided tour to this area. Tour companies that can get you to Peek-A-Boo are:
      – Dreamland Safari Tours, (435) 412-1790, http://www.dreamlandtours.net
      – TC Tours, (435) 668-5262, http://www.slotcanyontourskanab.com
      – Kanab Tour Company, (435) 644-5525, http://www.kanabtourcompany.com
      – Grand Circle Tours, (928) 691-0166, http://www.vermilioncliffs.net
      Since tours of Peek-A-Boo Canyon take approximately 4 hours, you should plan on either hitting Horseshoe Bend en route to Kanab, UT (which will lengthen the drive from GC), touring Peek-A-Boo that afternoon and overnighting in Kanab, UT, or overnighting in Page, AZ, and touring Peek-A-Boo the following morning. That would mean taking the Narrows at Zion off the table, but you could still enjoy any number of good hikes at Zion that aren’t as labor-intensive. One word of warning: due to COVID-19, the Zion Canyon Shuttle (which must be used if you’re wanting to access the main scenic area of the park) has reduced its capacity by 50%, necessitating advance purchase of tickets. Some friends of mine were recently there and said it was a pain in the backside. For this reason, you may want to skip Zion this time around and maybe visit Snow Canyon State Park near St. George, UT. It’s a beautiful area often referred to as “Little Zion” due to the similarity of its rock formations. Another great area to visit during the cooler months of the year is Valley of Fire State Park just outside of Las Vegas, NV. The scenery there is just stunning, and in November, it won’t be so ghastly hot as it would be during the summer months.
      Trip map
      Hope that helps, I know it’s a hard choice!
      Good luck, safe travels, and Happy Holidays,
      Alley 🙂

  57. Alley! I’ve spent the last 2 hours reading all the wonderful tips you’ve given and am so grateful I did. My husband and I will be visiting page and gc for the first time Oct 23rd. We will be driving from Dallas, TX and we’re originally planning on staying in page. We will arrive that Friday, explore that night, wake up bright and early to see sunrise at horseshoe bend, drive to the GC Stay a few hours and drive back. My worry is leaving the gc by 3pm and that 5hr or so drive back up to page. Will it be too dark and dangerous back to page that evening.. say the last 1.5hrs of our journey back will be after sunset. Our hotel is off US89.

    1. Hi Serena,
      Thank you for your compliments. That makes it all the more difficult to have to tell you that your plan is not feasible or safe.
      Normally, the drive from Page, AZ, to Grand Canyon South Rim takes ~3 hours. Due to a critical component of the shortest trip route being closed (AZ64 from Cameron, AZ, to Desert View Point) by order of the Navajo Tribe, this necessitates a very long detour down to Flagstaff, AZ, then back North via US180/AZ64 or I40/AZ64 to Grand Canyon South Rim (see map). This means that a 3-hour drive is now more along the lines of 4.5-5 hours. BTW Google maps lists the drive as taking 3 hours and 40 minutes, but this is not realistic; that figure is wheels turning, no stops, which rarely happens in this neck of the woods. Trust me, I lived and drived these roads for 20+ years!
      In light of that fact alone, you should strongly consider spending the night at Grand Canyon South Rim instead of attempting to do this as a day trip from Page, AZ. Another mitigating factor: you’re dealing with days that area rapidly shortening. In late October, sunrise takes place at ~6:30 AM, sunset occurs just after 6:00 PM. That means you have about 12 hours of daylight to work with. With 9-10 hours of that eaten up by the drive to and from, that only leaves you a small window of opportunity for sightseeing, lunch, and other logistics.
      In answer to your specific question about US89 being too “dark and dangerous” in the hours after sunset, that’s affirmative! That particular area is very dimly lit, and can be populated by large wildlife such as deer and elk, as well as free range livestock such as cattle, goats, sheep, and even wild horses. You don’t want to risk a collision with one in an area that’s pitch black, possibly cold (nighttime temps can dip down around freezing this time of year), where cell service is spotty, and help will be a long time coming, not to mention VERY expensive.
      Again, for your safety and enjoyment, plan on spending a night at the Grand Canyon.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Hi,

        My friend and I will be hiking in Sedona and the Grand Canyon in November. I read that Antelope Canyon is closed due to the pandemic. Is Horseshoe Bend closed as well?

        Any information would be appreciated.

        Thanks!

        1. Hi Jane!
          You are correct that the Antelope Canyons are closed. However, Horseshoe Bend remains open! It is one of the few attractions in the Page, AZ, area that never closed through the pandemic.
          You mention that you will also be spending time in Sedona and Grand Canyon South Rim. Please note that it takes ~3 hours to drive from Sedona, AZ, to Page, AZ. It then takes ~5 hours to drive from Page, AZ, to Grand Canyon South Rim. Normally, the latter drive would only be ~3 hours, but the closure of Navajo Indian Tribal Lands to outsiders due to COVID-19, has resulted in the closure of an essential component of the shortest travel route. Therefore, it is necessary to detour through Flagstaff, AZ, to get from Page, AZ to Grand Canyon South Rim (or vice versa). Map Long story short, if you do wish to visit Horseshoe Bend, we would strongly recommend staying overnight in Page, AZ, so you’re not spending 6-8 hours behind the wheel of your car just to visit an attraction that takes at most 2 hours of your time.
          Hope that makes sense, and helps in your planning.
          Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

  58. Hi! Wow you are so informative.

    My siblings and I are planning on coming to the Grand Canyon on Nov1st. We are traveling to Phoenix and driving down to Page, AZ for the weekend and returning back on Monday. We have two full days there and were planning on visiting the horseshoe bend and the Navajo Nation but now that we know the Navajo Nation is closed there is so much that we can see but we just don’t know where to go in just the two days we are there.

    What would you recommend for a 2-day itinerary that would give us the best overall experience of the Grand Canyon? And which tickets should we purchase in advance?

    Thank you so much in advance

    1. Hi Minerva, and thank you for your compliments!
      Here’s the deal: Page, AZ, and the Grand Canyon are two separate areas. With the closure of the Navajo Nation, they are even more “separate” than they were before. If you only have two days to work with, seeing both areas is going to require a lot of time on the road. Time and desire permitting, you could do something like this:
      Day 1 – Drive from Phoenix, Page, AZ, ~a 5-hour drive. Overnight in Page, AZ.
      Day 2 – Visit Horseshoe Bend first thing in the morning (sunrise in early November occurs ~7:00 AM), then drive to Grand Canyon South Rim. **Normally, the trip to Grand Canyon South Rim would be ~3 hours, but due to the closure of the Navajo Nation, it is now necessary to take a detour through Flagstaff to get there. This has turned a 3-hour drive into more like a 5-hour drive.** Overnight at Grand Canyon South Rim
      Day 3 – Drive back to Phoenix, ~5 hours
      If the prospect of packing up and driving for 5 hours a day doesn’t appeal, you’ll have to either carve out more time for your trip, or eliminate one of the destinations on your wish list. If you haven’t been to the Grand Canyon, that should take priority over Page, AZ.
      Whatever you decide, all hotels and guided tours must be booked in advance. Just because COVID-19 has reduced traffic in the area somewhat, that doesn’t mean you’re free to “wing it.”
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Thank you so much.

        We are traveling on Friday and returning on Monday, therefore we have Saturday and Sunday to fully get to explore the area. Horseshoe bend on Saturday and Grand Canyon South Rim.

        Any suggestions for helicopter tours of the south rim? Or do you suggest a better type of helicopter tour?

        What suggestions do you have for the Sunday? I hear the Wire Pass Canyon may be open but we are not familiar with the area.

        Sorry for all the questions, we are just not familiar at all.

        1. Hey again, Minerva,
          For helicopter tours, Grand Canyon South Rim is the best place to do that. If possible, opt for the longer flight (40-45 minutes) on the Eco-Star EC-130 helicopter, and do it first thing in the morning for best light and lack of wind.
          Regarding Wire Pass Canyon, it is open, but a few things to consider before you go: it is a moderately strenuous hike, with an 8-10′ drop a short ways into the slot canyon. This may be a deterrent to inexperienced hikers, or individuals afraid of heights. Another consideration is that the trailhead to Wire Pass Canyon is off US89 between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT, on the House Rock Valley Road, an unpaved road. While it is regularly graded and accessible to 2WD vehicles much of the time, if recent weather has brought any moisture whatsoever, the HRVR can turn into a muddy, impassable mess. Parties in rental cars should think twice about attempting this road since off-road driving is strictly prohibited by most rental car companies. We strongly recommend looking into a guided tour that can get you to there and back in one piece, and turn you onto features you might have missed trying to find your own way. Reputable companies offering guided tours to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch include:
          – Detours American West, 480-633-9013, http://www.detoursamericanwest.com
          – Paria Outpost & Outfitters, 928-691-1047, http://www.paria.com
          – Grand Staircase Discovery Tours, 928-614-4099, http://www.grandstaircasediscoverytours.com
          Hope that helps and that you have a wonderful trip!
          Alley 🙂

      2. Thank you so much for your information. We are going to Page in early November also from Santa Fe and then to the Grand Canyon. It was good to learn that the 3 hour drive will now be a 5 hour drive.

        1. Hi Margarita,
          We know that vacations can be full of surprises, we’d rather they not be unpleasant ones!
          Have a good trip, and a happy holiday season.
          Alley:)

  59. Hi, I am planning a trip to Page, AZ in April 2021. We want to paddle the lake and horseshoe bend. Is there a launching site where we wont have to hike down with our paddle boards?

    1. Hi Trish,
      This is a great question!
      Stand-Up Paddleboarding (SUP) has grown in popularity at Lake Powell, and for good reason. Lots of room to get away from the crowds, and no shortage of amazing scenery! The best places to launch out of, in no particular order, are Lake Powell Resort & Marina, Antelope Point Marina, Wahweap Swim Beach, and Lone Rock Beach. Some of these might involve a short walk, but nothing that would qualify as a “hike.” For more information about SUPing on Lake Powell, visit Lake Powell Paddleboards
      Horseshoe Bend is a bit more complicated. To SUP through Horseshoe Bend, you must drive down to Lees Ferry, hire a backhaul service, get dropped off at the base of the Glen Canyon Dam, then paddle the 15-mile stretch through Glen Canyon back to Lees Ferry. For more information on this option, visit http://www.KayakHorseshoeBend.com
      Hope that helps! Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

  60. Hi. Planning on visiting oct 16-17
    Is the entrance ticket/parking fee first in first serve or can it be purchased in advance?

    Any other activities (relatively) Nearby you can recommend?

    1. Hi Maya,
      Parking at Horseshoe Bend is strictly first-come/first-serve. Advance reservations are not taken.
      As for other activities you can enjoy in the Page, AZ, area, there’s no shortage of them! Which one(s) you choose depend on your traveling party, how much time you have, and your trip budget, among other factors. These include but aren’t limited to:
      – Grandview Overlook Park
      – Wahweap Marina
      – Antelope Point Marina
      – The Chains & Hanging Garden Trail
      – Lone Rock Beach
      – Page Rim View Trail
      – The “New” Wave and Radio Tower Rock
      – Wahweap Overlook
      – Glen Canyon Dam Overlook
      – Alstrom Point
      – Skylight Arch
      – White Pocket
      – Wire Pass/Buckskin Gulch
      – Lees Ferry & Lonely Dell Ranch
      – Navajo Bridge & Interpretive Center
      – Glen Canyon Conservancy Flagship Store
      – Kayak Tours on Lake Powell & the Colorado River
      – Private Boat Charters
      – Airplane & Helicopter Tours
      – Glen Canyon Dam Steel Arch Bridge
      – Jeep/ATV Tours
      – Electric Mountain Bike Tours
      – Big Water, Utah, Visitors Center
      – “The Moon”, Big Water, Utah
      Whatever you decide, be sure to make advance reservations any and all hotels and guided tours.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

      1. Hello! I am very sorry to bother you. We are planning on renting a car and driving from Vegas to Horseshoe Bend at the end of October. Do we need some kind of sticker ( National Parks Sticker etc.)?
        Thank you very much!

        1. Hi Velina,
          Goodness gracious, it’s no bother at all 😉
          If you plan to just visit Horseshoe Bend while in Page, AZ, you do not need a National Parks Pass. The parking lot is administered by the City of Page, AZ, and a one-time fee of $10 is collected for standard passenger vehicles to park, walk to the rim, take photos, then walk back. Allot approximately 2 hours for this activity. Be aware that a construction project is taking place near Horseshoe Bend that may delay travel slightly.
          Now if you want to go down to the waterline of Lake Powell, that is located in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, and in that instance, you would be required to pay a $30/vehicle entrance fee (one exception: more on that in a minute), which is good for one week’s time. Simply hold on to your original receipt if you plan to stay in the area for more than 1 day.
          Regarding the exception to the entrance fee rule, that would be the Chains/Hanging Garden area, which is on the Eastern flank of the Glen Canyon Dam Steel Arch Bridge. There, you can park your vehicle and walk down to the water. It is a ways down, which means it’s a ways back up! At the end of October, the water may be too cold for swimming, but you can at least dip your feet in if you want.
          One last thing: it does take approximately 5 hours to drive from Las Vegas, NV, to Page, AZ. That’s one way. For this reason alone, you should strongly consider staying overnight in Page, AZ, for optimal safety and enjoyment.
          Good luck and safe travels,
          Alley 🙂

        1. Patty,
          You are welcome! Hope you have a wonderful time. If you get a minute when you return, write back in and let us know how things went!
          Take care,
          Alley 🙂

  61. Hey Alley! We are planning a camping tour of northern Arizona, starting October 16th. Do you have some campsites you would recommend and advice on closures? We are renting an RV and driving up from Phoenix. Thanks!

    1. Hey Manny,
      If you’re renting an RV, I’d advise staying at campgrounds/RV parks with full hook-ups. In mid-October, daytime temperatures are mostly comfortable, but nighttime temperatures can dip down around/below freezing. You’ll want to have access to reliable heat to ensure a good night’s sleep!
      Assuming you’re going to the Grand Canyon South Rim, developed RV parks in the immediate vicinity are Trailer Village inside the park, and Grand Canyon Camper Village in Tusayan, AZ, 7 miles outside the park.
      Near Horseshoe Bend, there is the Page/Lake Powell Campground in the town of Page, AZ, and the Wahweap Campground inside the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. There are other places to camp nearby, but they’re mostly dry camping. AntelopeCanyon.AZ: Camping & RV Options Near Antelope Canyon
      Closures to be aware of include, but are not limited to:
      – AZ64 from Desert View Point to Cameron, AZ, on the East Rim of the Grand Canyon; this means that if you go to the South Rim, you’ll then need to detour back through Flagstaff, AZ, before going to Page, AZ. This essentially turns a ~3 hour drive into a 4.5-5 hour drive.
      – The Antelope Canyons – slot canyons still open at this time are Wire Pass Canyon/Buckskin Gulch and Red Canyon, aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon, near Kanab, UT. For more information about touring these slot canyons, visit our companion site, http://www.AntelopeCanyon.AZ: Help! My Tour Got Cancelled
      – Monument Valley Tribal Park – with the exception of Goulding’s Lodge and Forrest Gump Point
      – Four Corners National Monument – completely closed until further notice
      Hope that helps. Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂

        1. Hi TL,
          We are very sorry to have to tell you that the Antelope Canyons are closed, and are expected to remain so for the remainder of 2020. If you wish, you can be placed on a priority e-mail list to be notified the minute Antelope Canyon reopens. Visit our companion site, http://www.AntelopeCanyon.AZ: Closure Alert E-mail
          If your visit is occurring in the near future, and you still wish to visit a slot canyon while you’re here, you’ll be happy to know that there are alternatives not affected by the closure of Navajo Indian Tribal Lands. The most “family-friendly” of these is Red Canyon, aka Peek-A-Boo Canyon in Kanab, UT. Kanab, UT, is ~1 hour drive from Page, AZ, and Red Canyon is a beautiful slot canyon, and an easy walk. The hard part about getting there is the access road in, which a lot of people get stuck on, therefore, a guided tour is strongly recommended. Reputable tour companies who can get you to Peek-A-Boo are:
          – Dreamland Safari Tours, (435) 412-1790, http://www.dreamlandtours.net
          – TC Tours, (435) 668-5262, http://www.slotcanyontourskanab.com
          – Kanab Tour Company, (435) 644-5525, http://www.kanabtourcompany.com
          – Forever Adventure Tours, 435-644-5700, http://www.foreveradventuretours.com
          – Grand Circle Tours, (928) 691-0166, http://www.vermilioncliffs.net
          If you’re up for something more rugged, Wire Pass Canyon is a photogenic two-part slot canyon that is short enough for intermediate-level hikers to enjoy, yet offers the option to delve further into Buckskin Gulch for those wanting more of a challenge. Located off US89 between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT, on the House Rock Valley Road, the walk to the entrance of the initial slot is via a typically dry streambed, which may be composed of rather deep sand. An 8-10’ drop a short distance into the slot canyon is one reason why Wire Pass Canyon may not be appropriate for those traveling with young children, the elderly, or individuals afraid of heights. As the canyon walls become higher and closer together, they suddenly open up as the second slot connects with the Buckskin Gulch. If you’ve had enough at this point, you can simply turn around and head back to your vehicle. If you’d like to explore further, you can easily make a half-day hike out of the immediate area around the confluence with the Buckskin. Look for some bighorn sheep petroglyphs dating back hundreds, maybe thousands of years! Access to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch is Hikers are required to pay a self-permitting fee at the kiosk by the trailhead. Since the House Rock Valley Road is also unpaved, and any moisture whatsoever can render it a muddy, impassable mess, a guided tour is recommended for getting your party there and back without incident. Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT based companies offering guided tours to Wire Pass Canyon and the Buckskin Gulch include:
          – Detours American West, 480-633-9013, http://www.detoursamericanwest.com
          – Paria Outpost & Outfitters, 928-691-1047, http://www.paria.com
          – Grand Staircase Discovery Tours, 928-614-4099, http://www.grandstaircasediscoverytours.com
          Hope that helps. Good luck and safe travels!
          Alley 🙂

  62. We are planning to visit horseshoe bend on 17th October 2020. We are not sure if it is open or not? Can anyone who recently. visited can help?

    1. Hey Sam,
      Horseshoe Bend is open, and barring anything completely bizarre, will be on the day of your visit! It was one of the few attractions in Northern Arizona that never closed because of COVID-19. One thing you should be aware of, however, is that there is a construction project taking place nearby, that could tack on an extra 15-30 minutes to your drive time. They are building a much-needed dedicated turn lane into the Horseshoe Bend parking lot. Traffic will be managed by flagmen/women in both directions.
      Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley 🙂