I’m bringing y’all to the good old U.S. of A. as Grand Canyon, Arizona is in this week’s spotlight. Seven years ago, I was fortunate enough to have a Las Vegas experience, but my only view of the Grand Canyon was the plane. I really wish I had taken the time to visit this majestic natural wonder carved out by the Colorado River.
Fifth stop: Grand Canyon, Arizona!
Nearly two billion years ago the Colorado River and its offshoots cut channels through layer after layer of rock while the Colorado Plateau uplifted to create what CNN called a natural wonder of the world in 1997. Today, the river continues to erode and form the magnificent Grand Canyon. The canyon was granted federal protection in 1893 but did not make National Park status until 1919.
The Colorado River creates a barrier parting the canyon into the South Rim and North Rim; most people visit the South Rim while the North Rim has a short season. With an average distance across of 10 miles, it takes five hours to drive the 215 miles between the South Rim and North Rim villages.
There are plenty of activities to do in this park, which receives almost five million visitors every year. There are free ranger programs, visitor centers, a museum, mule trips, view points, whitewater trips, bicycle rentals, and more. Audio tours via your cell phone and hiking are also popular.
For more information on planning a trip to the Grand Canyon, visit the National Park Service.