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Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

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Baltimore
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Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

I am coming from San Diego to Phoenix for a night, then onto the Grand Canyon for two nights. Should I stay in Williams or nearer to the canyon? How far is it from Williams to the GC? Will it be a pain to drive that two days in a row? I'd like things to do at night after the canyon is dark which is why I don't really want to stay in the canyon. Let me know if Williams is best or if I should stay in Tuscaya, I think that was the name of the town nearer to the GC.

Tucson, Arizona
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1. Re: Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

If you are looking for nightlife, Neither Williams or Tusayan will have much of anything. The attraction is the Grand Canyon and, if you do it right, you will be too tired to do much of anything at night.

Stay inside the park, if at all possible. Next best would be Tusayan. Yes, it would be a pain driving back and forth from Williams and more so from Flagstaff, which is where you will find the only real nightlife in the area.

Uden, The...
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2. Re: Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

I agree with Mike. Williams to south rim is a one hour drive. Tusayan just is at the south entrance of GCNP. Best would be to stay inside the NP and make a reservation at www.grandcanyonlodges.com

Baltimore
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3. Re: Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

Just to clarify, it wasn't that I was looking for "nightlife", just that I want a restaurant to be able to eat dinner at both nights. My other problem is that my plane leaves from Phoenix at 1:30 which means I'd have to be there at 11:30 and so the drive from the GC being four hours would make us have to get up awfully early whereas if we stayed in Williams, I'm told it's only about a 2.5 hour drive to Phoenix, can anyone clarify?

Also, what should I do in the GC for two days? I wouldn't mind some light hiking, I like to exercise, but are there trail maps or anything? Most people I know have only gone once, seen it and left! I'd like to see what else there is to do.

Tucson, Arizona
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4. Re: Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

There are 3 sit down restaurants inside the park:

El Tovar

The Arizona Room

Bright Angel Restaurant.

From the south rim, it would be around 3 1/2 hours to PHX. IMO, worth getting up a bit earlier. Besides, you get to see the canyon at sunrise.

Sedona, AZ
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for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
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5. Re: Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

Stay inside the park if you can get a room. That's the place to be. Commuting from Williams takes over an hour each way. that's 4 hours of wasted time in your visit, not to mention the hassle of parking and getting oriented each time you enter and exit the park.

wilkes-barre,pa
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6. Re: Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

Thinking of taking the train tour of GCNP. Is it better in the spring or fall? We are thinking of taking a group tour. Is it better to book yourself for train and hotels? We are in our young 50's but don't want much hassel of doing everything. Plus any ideas, deals, what not to do, car rentals, will go a long way with us.

Sedona, AZ
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7. Re: Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

The train will only get you to the GCNP. You will not see the GC at any time from the train. It will be very expensive and time consuming for a large group. Plus it will limit your time and abilities to get around and enjoy the park itself.

Fort Worth, Texas
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8. Re: Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

ksigns1, you could also try what we did. We drove to GCNP and spent the first night inside the park. We spent most of the next day touring the park, then stayed in Williams our second night, arriving before dinner time. We enjoyed staying inside the park, and also enjoyed Williams and the Route 66 experience. Keep in mind that the GCNP lodges are usually booked full, but if you call regularly, they will often have cancellations and you can get in. Staying inside the park the first night will allow you to enjoy a sunset and sunrise the next day, and staying the second night in Williams will put you closer to Phoenix. And you will avoid "back and forth" driving time.

9. Re: Where to stay when visiting Grand Canyon

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