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Visiting the Grand Canyon with Kids

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As an Arizona native, I have been to the Grand Canyon countless times. There are so many ways to see the canyon, but with kids in tow, there are some considerations that should be made. Here are my tips for visiting the Grand Canyon with kids.

Rent Bikes

We all know kids have a limited amount of patience for staying in one spot. For a fun experience, we rented bicycles to ride along the Rim Trail. The Rim Trail goes along the top of the canyon and is the quickest way to to see the most views. Bright Angel Bicycles is located by the main visitor center and has bikes to suit any family. There are all sizes of bikes available as well as baby seats, bicycle trailers, tag-a-longs and even adult tricycles. My family was quickly fitted with bicycles and helmets and were on our way.

Bright Angel Bicycles supplies riders with a map of the trail system. We chose the orange trail which goes to Yaki Point. The ride is easy and can be completed in about an hour. There are also longer trails that can be combined with shuttles if you wish to go further. I brought a backpack with snacks and water. Don’t forget your camera! The ride will provide amazing views from all different angles. It was the perfect way to see the canyon.

Visiting the Grand Canyon with kids - riding bikes

Hiking

The trail system is easy to navigate and there are park rangers available for questions. Remember how long it takes you to go down because it might take you twice as long to go up. Choose a short distance like the first part of Bright Angel Trail. It will engage but not overwhelm the kids. Don’t forget to bring water! The shuttle can connect you between points, but try not to stay on it too long. It can be slow and crowded.

Facilites

A tour of the Grand Canyon is not complete without a stop at the lodge, El Tovar. The historic site is beautiful and there are lots of activities going on around the hotel. We saw Native American dancing and park ranger talks. Make time for the Junior Ranger Program. Kids learn about the park and can earn a badge to become Junior Park Rangers. There are food options in the lodges at the Grand Canyon, but I suggest packing a picnic. It will be a lunch with a view that you will never forget!

Where to Stay

The park is very quiet at night, so stay somewhere where there are more activities. Hilton Sedona Resort & Spa is convenient to the park and makes a great home base for exploring all of the wonders of Arizona.

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Tricia lives in Phoenix with her husband, 12 year-old daughter and 10 year-old son. She is a special education teacher for elementary students. Her family’s favorite memories…

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