South Rim - Open All YearGrand 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.
Within Grand Canyon Village, are 3 main "zones," or districts.
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 (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 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.
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.
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.
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.
Desert View - Open All YearDesert 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.
North Rim - Open for the SeasonLodging, 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 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.
Last updated: May 15, 2019