The beautiful Grand Canyon, widely regarded as one of the natural wonders of the world, needs no introduction. If you want to drive from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon, you might be tempted to fly to Phoenix, but you should consider driving instead.
The journey from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon takes about 8 hours non-stop. Extend your trip by at least two days and visit attractions such as Joshua Tri-State Park, Beanizon and parts of the historic Route 66 in Kingman and Williams.
Along the way you have something to see and do, so read on for your itinerary.
How far is the Grand Canyon of Los Angeles and how long does it take to get there?
The journey from Los Angeles to Grand Canyon National Park is about 510 miles and takes about 8 hours. The route starts along the I-10 and eventually reaches the I-40 at the border with Arizona.
One of the main characteristics of this route is the absence of traffic: as soon as you leave Los Angeles, you usually drive in the desert and even the big cities you pass should not be overcrowded.
You can leave Los Angeles just outside the I-40 and shave for about 45 minutes, but this makes the first part of the trip much less picturesque and doesn’t save you enough time to justify a trip on this road.
In theory you can reach the Grand Canyon in one day if you leave early and take your breaks. However, it is better to enjoy the beautiful nature for a few days along the way. Despite the domination of the desert area, the route described below leads through truly unique places.
Best route from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon
The best route from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon is fairly short, with incredibly beautiful scenery and some remarkable cities.
You will never regret taking this beautiful road in Joshua National Park on your way to the Grand Canyon from Los Angeles.
If you leave Los Angeles on the I-10, expand the road a little and skip Mojave National Park to see the Salton Sea and Joshua National Park trees up close – no problem, you can easily retreat a few miles into the reserve once you’ve joined the I-40 on the road.
Directions from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon
Take the I-10 from Los Angeles, past Mount San Jacinto State Park and along the outskirts of Palm Springs. Continue through Coachella Valley Reserve and Joshua Tree National Park and then leave Park 192 for SR 177.
From this route split up into SR 62 and follow it eastbound to Vital Junction, then take US 95 northbound on the I-40. From there you either follow the Interstate Highway a few kilometres to the west to explore Mojave National Park, or continue east through Havasu National Park and along the border with Arizona.
Shortly after that you will encounter Highway 66 for the first time – take the historic road through Kingman and return to the I-40. After passing Ash Fork and entering Williams, return to Highway 66 and follow the road through Bearizona Wildlife Park – from there you can either head east to Flagstaff or stay on the road and head north on SR 64.
Continue on the public road along the campsite on Lake Kaibab – you only have to walk north through the valley and eventually reach the Kaibab National Forest and the Grand Canyon village.
Best stops between Los Angeles and the Grand Canyon
You should probably split the trip into at least a few days, so you don’t have to travel in one day. You can use your hotel or rental car as a base for planning missions, what a beautiful landscape in the area you want to explore. Below is a list of the best hotels in the area to visit:
Explore and relax at the mast
Although Flag Point may be a little off your route, it is a popular stopover for Grand Canyon visitors and has good connections to the Grand Canyon. There are also a lot of interesting things in the city and its surroundings, so it’s worth thinking about finding a hotel there – the best of which should be the Flagstaff Little America Hotel.
With a fashionable lounge, a large outdoor pool and an incredible restaurant and bar on site, this hotel is a gift that will always be a pleasure to give. Prepare for a long day’s walk through 500 acres of pandemic forest, and if you don’t have the courage, go to the gym where a real challenge awaits you.
If you just want to relax, have a cup of coffee or a board game in a gift shop and sit down in a common room in the open air. Speaking of the outdoors, that view of the sunset and the surrounding greenery from the comfort of the jacuzzi will never grow old!
It’s certainly more expensive than your usual hotel in a small town, but given the quality of the accommodation and the proximity to the Grand Canyon (and other attractions) it’s worth it.
A historic city centre, something not to be missed during a stop at Flagstaff.
Make the most of your visit to the Grand Canyon
You want to make your stay in the Grand Canyon as comfortable as possible so that you can relax and unwind. The Grand Canyon Grand Hotel is by far the best resort in the area.
When it comes to design, everything about this hotel is amazing. The beautifully furnished and decorated living room exudes character and atmosphere, while the beautiful bedrooms are equipped with everything you could possibly need (and in style as well).
Charge your batteries for the big day at the bar or restaurant and relax after a long day with tired feet in the pool or whirlpool. If you still have some energy left at the end of the day, get in shape or search the gift shop for a useful souvenir of the Grand Canyon.
The hotel is located in Tusayan, which means you are about 7 miles from Grand Canyon Village and the Bright Angel Trail. This is an expensive aspect, but given the quality of service and the high demand for apartments in the Grand Canyon, it is to be expected.
What to see on a trip from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon
To really appreciate every attraction on this route, you should try to spend at least a week on it. In the Grand Canyon National Park alone there are countless places that deserve your attention, but these are just a few of the places worth seeing along the way:
- San Jacinto State Park – This beautiful park is home to the San Jacinto Peak, at 10,000 feet, one of the most remarkable peaks in America.
- Yeshua Trees National Park – The stony landscape of the park and the beautiful Yeshua trees make it a popular hiking destination.
- Salt Lake – with more salt water than the Pacific Ocean, this increasingly smaller lake distinguishes itself as one of the largest ecological anomalies in America.
- Mojave National Park – Characterized by wild flowers, Yeshua trees and countless sand dunes and canyons.
- Lake Mead (South Section) – This reservoir offers an elusive combination of water and desert and is ideal for outdoor water fun.
- Havasu National Park – is a beautiful nature with many rare or endangered animals.
- Kingman – This city is called the heart of the Historic Route 66 because it is the largest remaining stretch of the original inner city road.
- Delgagillo Snowpack – , located in Seligman, this road attraction is built with scrap metal and represents a time capsule of the main road.
- Bearizona Wildlife Park is a pandemic forest where many wild animals can be seen.
- Grand Canyon Farm Deer – is exactly what it says on the box – 10 acres of cute animals that have grown up since childhood, and they’re all yours to pet.
- Flagstaff – is the nearest big city on the southern edge of the Grand Canyon, surrounded by mountains, forests and monuments on all sides.
- Kaibab National Forest – spectacular forest of pines, aspen and a variety of wildlife.
- Grand Canyon National Park – – the main attraction of the trip – Experts believe that the Colorado River has been cutting these canyons for millions of years.
No matter how many hours you drive, this view of the Grand Canyon is worth it.
Best time to travel from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon
You can drive from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon at any time between early spring and late autumn – you’ll want the weather to be as pleasant as possible as you’ll usually hike, camp, cycle or ride in the park.
The first thing to consider is driving – since most of the California area is in the desert, it can be difficult to drive in the summer when temperatures peak in July and August.
As for the Grand Canyon itself, a visit in winter will guarantee you a lot of peace and quiet, but the north side will be completely blocked by heavy snowfall (an average of almost 3 metres of snow a year!), and temperatures will be extremely low. Therefore, visits in winter are usually not well thought out.
In the high summer, the temperature in the lower part of the canyon can often exceed 100 degrees, making it almost impossible to hike here. If you’re not planning on hiking, the temperature on the southern slope generally drops to a pleasant 80 degrees.
The selection of the best visiting months is a trekking – March to May and September to November – an excellent option. Despite the fact that the park is always subject to fluctuations, the temperature is on average warmer than in summer and it is less crowded in spring and autumn.
In this context, autumn hardly outweighs spring. Due to sudden changes in terrain and climatic variations in spring, some areas will often experience prolonged snowfall, which may mean that the northern edge is inaccessible.
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