The Best Time To Visit The Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon National Park is a majestic natural wonder located in Arizona that’s known for its stunning views. Despite its grandeur, it can get really crowded, very quickly. When you visit in the off season, you’ll be putting less strain on the environment and creating a better experience for yourself. Here’s our advice on the best time to visit the Grand Canyon, where you’ll miss the crowds and still get amazing weather.

Travel during the off season

The Grand Canyon has four distinct seasons: snowy winters, variable springs, hot summers, and mild falls. 

The best time to visit is March through May and September through November. This is when crowds are minimal and heat is bearable. If you do decide to go in the summer, be prepared for hundred degree weather and loads of tourists. If you go in the winter, hotel prices will be discounted, but snow might cause park closures. 

Events

If you choose to visit in April, you just might be visiting during National Park Week. Parks all over the country hold various events to promote the beauty and importance of National Parks. They even start the week off with free entrance, making this the best time to visit the Grand Canyon (or one of the best, at least).

best time to visit the Grand Canyon
View from Lipan Point on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon | MICHELLE MARTIN

Trails to hike

Not sure exactly what to do at the Grand Canyon? One of the best ways to take in the canyon’s beauty is by taking a hiking tour to the bottom. You will see things such as gorges, ridges, and rock formations. 

A popular route is called the Bright Angel Trail. Even though it’s beautiful, this steep 6 mile hike can be pretty long. It is NOT recommended to do the entire hike in one day (especially between May and September due to heat). Plan on bringing a tent and extra water if you plan on going all the way to the bottom. 

An easier trail is called the Rim Trail, one of the Grand Canyon’s most popular trails. It is one of the best ways to see the attractions on the South Rim. The trail is 12 miles long but a free shuttle can take you back if you get too tired. 

CARLI CUTHBERTSON