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South Rim - Open All Year

Grand Canyon Village is the center of activity and the transportation hub for the South Rim of the park. The village is the only place where the railroad reaches the rim of Grand Canyon.
 
Grand Canyon village parking map shows parking lots 1-4 at the visitor center (right) and Lots A-B in Market Plaza (middle) and Lots C-D in the Historic District of the village.
Grand Canyon Village Zones. (right) Visitor Center and Mather Point.  (middle) Market Plaza, store, bank, post office, campgrounds.  (left) Historic District: railroad depot, historic lodges, shops.  Parking lots are shown in red.
 

Within Grand Canyon Village, are 3 main "zones," or districts.

  1. The Visitor Center / Mather Point, where most visitors park and get their first look at Grand Canyon. Four large parking areas are located here as well as the main transit center for the park's free shuttle buses.
  2. Market Plaza - the business center where the general store, bank and US Post Office are located. This zone is adjacent to Mather Campground, and Trailer Village RV park.
  3. The Historic District, where the Grand Canyon Village started back in the pioneer days, around 120 years ago. This is where the railroad depot is located, as well as the historic lodges and livery operation.

To get around the village, the Village Loop Shuttle Bus (Blue Route) connects the Visitor Center parking areas with Market Plaza, and the Historic district lodges, campground, restaurants, and shops.
 
 
Grand Canyon Visitor Center
Grand Canyon Visitor Center

Grand Canyon Visitor Center (South Rim)

Is located just South of Mather Point. Outdoor exhibits provide a variety of information about Grand Canyon National Park and what to do once you are here.

The visitor center is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily. You can park in one of the visitor center's four parking lots, or arrive by riding the free Village Loop Shuttle Bus from the Village Historic District or Market Plaza

Watch the film, Grand Canyon: A Journey of Wonder, in the theater. The movie is 20 minutes long and starts on the hour and the half-hour.

Walk to the canyon rim and Mather Point by following the signed pedestrian paths leading from the Visitor Center Area to the Rim Trail.

From the Visitor Center, the easiest and fastest way to get out and see more of Grand Canyon is to take the scenic Kaibab Rim Shuttle Bus (orange route) The bus leaves from the nearby Transit Center, and the it provides the only access to the South Kaibab Trailhead, and Yaki Point.


 
historic train depot
Historic train depot with El Tovar Hotel beyond
The Village Historic District, is the heart of development on the South Rim, constructed mostly by the Santa Fe Railroad during the first half of the 20th Century.

Several of the buildings date from the early 1900s, including Lookout Studio and Hopi House, designed by Mary Colter.

Stop by the Train Depot, take one of the walking tours, and imagine yourself back in the day when President Teddy Roosevelt and artist Thomas Moran spent time here at the canyon. Trains arrive at the Grand Canyon Depot at least once a day.
 
verkamps visitor center
Verkamps Visitor Center

Visit Verkamp's Visitor Center, formerly a curio shop, to learn to learn more of the history of this community. A Grand Canyon Association bookstore within this visitor center is a great place to browse for gifts.

Kolb Studio cascades down the side of the canyon and features art exhibits in the auditorium of a building that was once the home of the canyon's pioneering photographers. A Grand Canyon Association bookstore within Kolb Studio is a great place to browse for gifts, with all proceeds going directly to the upkeep of the studio itself.

Just west of Kolb Studio, in the Historic District, is the Hermit Road Interchage, where the Hermit Road Shuttle (Red Route) picks up passengers for a breathtaking trip along the scenic 7 mile (11 km) Hermit Road - with stops at 9 spectacular canyon overlooks. Between March 1 and November 30, Hermit Road is closed to private vehicles, so the riding the bus, walking or riding a bicycle is the only access.

During the winter, between December 1, and February 28, Hermit Road is open to private vehicles.

 
greenway from historic district to market plaza
Paved Greenway Trail
Greenway Trail

Across the street from the depot, above the Xanterra South Rim General Offices begins another segment of the Greenway Trail.

This segment of the Greenway, away from the rim, takes walkers and bicyclists from Grand Canyon Village to Market Plaza. For bicyclists the Greenway provides a much safer route than the park's busy narrow roads.
 
visitors approaching the south rim general store.
General Store at Market Plaza

Market Plaza
is the Business Center of Grand Canyon Village. Here you will find Park Headquarters, the General Store and Deli, Chase Bank, a US Post Office, and the cafeteria, gift shop and front desk of Yavapai Lodge. Market Plaza is within walking distance from Mather Campground and adjacent Trailer Village RV Park.

Market Plaza has Parking lot (B) a large lot in a central location, and a good place to park, and then ride the park's free Village Loop (Blue Route) shuttle bus.

 
Yavapai Museum of Geology perched on the canyon rim.
Yavapai Museum of Geology
Yavapai Museum of Geology (Yavapai Observation Station)
is located one mile east (1.6 km) of Market Plaza and features spectacular views of Grand Canyon. Geological displays include three-dimensional models, powerful photographs, and interpretive exhibits that describe the complicated geologic story of the area.

The Yavapai Museum exhibits explain the deposition of rock layers, the uplift of the Colorado Plateau, and the carving of Grand Canyon. A Grand Canyon Association bookstore within the museum is a great place to browse for gifts.
 

 
Photo from Desert View Point by Kristen M Caldon
View from Desert View Point

NPS Photo by Kristen M. Caldon

Desert View - Open All Year

Desert View is a small settlement located 25 miles/ 41 km east of Grand Canyon Village, near the eastern edge of Grand Canyon National Park. At Desert View, the Colorado River makes a turn to the north while the Painted Desert extends toward the Navaho and Hopi Indian Reservations. On a clear day, one can see well over 100 miles. (161 km)

The historic Desert View Watchtower, designed by Mary Colter, is located here, as well as a general store, gas station, park ranger programs, and cultural demonstrators. There is also a first-come, first-served seasonal campground (open April 13, through October 13, 2019.) Lodging is not available at Desert View, the only option for overnighters is the campground.
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More about Desert View facilities and hours of operation

 

 
view from grand canyon lodge, north rim
Grand Canyon Lodge Veranda

North Rim - Open for the Season

Lodging, restaurants and shops are open May 15 through Oct. 15 of each year. During winter months, the North Rim is closed by snow.

A worthwhile trip for those who enjoy the road less traveled, the North Rim, or "other side" of the Grand Canyon is visited by only 10% of all Grand Canyon visitors. There is one lodge, Grand Canyon Lodge (managed by Forever Resorts) and one campground on the North Rim operated by the NPS.

The hike across the canyon from South Rim to North Rim is 21 miles (34 km). However, traveling from the South Rim to the North Rim by automobile requires a five-hour drive of 220 miles (354 km). Driving directions to the North Rim...

Learn how to make North Rim lodging and campground reservations during the 2019 season.


 

 
view of colorado river from toroweap overlook
3,000 ft above river

Remote Tuweep

The view from Toroweap Overlook, 3000 vertical feet (914 meters) above the Colorado River, is a breathtaking sheer drop. This remote and primitive area, known as both Tuweep and Toroweap, is on the northwest rim of the Grand Canyon on the Arizona Strip. A visit to this area can be challenging, but rewarding.

Since the National Park Service manages the area for its primitive values, improvements and services are minimal.

Learn more about remote Tuweep

Last updated: May 15, 2019

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 129
Grand Canyon, AZ 86023

Phone:

928-638-7888

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