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The Grand Canyon Rim Trail

A flat walk with stunning views of the canyon. Up to 12 miles, mostly paved.
Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Easy
Length: 12 miles
Duration: Unknown
Family Friendly

Overview :  For great views of the Grand Canyon along a flat path, this is the hike for you. It offers a great introduction to the Grand Canyon, ... more »

Tips:  Bring water and good walking shoes, and don't forget your camera. Take the free NPS shuttle to one of the stops along the trail.

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Points of Interest

1. Pipe Creek Vista

Take the free NPS shuttle to this stop, snap some photos of the view, and head west on the paved path along the rim towards the village.

For many visitors, this is their first view of the Grand Canyon (and it's a pretty good one). It is the closest viewpoint from the park entrance, even though there are better views further along the rim trail, where you can see more of the canyon. If you look down and to the northeast you will see O'Neill butte down below (it's hard to miss).

... More

3. Yavapai Point

Here you will have some great views in all directions--even down! That's right, you can walk over the glass observation area and look straight down and few thousand feet the the canyon below. There is a store where you can see various displays explaining the geology and history of the canyon, or buy souvenirs and books.

4. Grandeur Point

A short distance after Yavapai point, this lookout is only accessible on foot (which means it will be less crowded). From here you can see the entire Bright Angel Trail leading down into the Canyon below.

5. Verkamp's Visitor Center

Here you will find restaurants, a visitor center, shops, shuttles, a photograph studio, and the start of the Bright Angel trail down to the Colorado River below.

6. Trailview Overlook

As the name implies, you will have some great views of the Bright Angel trail winding down the rock walls, eventually ending at the Colorado river, about 4000 feet below.

More great views await you here, as well as a shuttle stop where you can catch a shuttle to further along the trail or back to the village for a snack after a long hike. To the East, you will see the work of erosion on the red canyon walls.

8. Powell Point

The paved road stops here and becomes a dirt road for a while. If you prefer to walk on a paved road, take the next shuttle to Monument Creek Vista where it starts up again. This is a great place stop to watch the sunset, and it was the point where the dedication ceremony was held for the park in 1920.

As it is the northernmost point of the entire South Rim, you are sure have some great views in both directions. Below, Salt Creek runs along one side while Monument Creek runs on the other. To the west, you can see into the canyon as far as 20 miles away. Because of the far-stretching, unobstructed views, Hopi point is the most popular spot for ... More

Another worthwhile point with some spectacular views to the west. The shuttle stops here and will take you further along the Rim Trail before heading back to the main village. There are several different overlooks here, which makes this area less crowded than Hopi Point during sunset.

11. Monument Creek Vista

The dirt path ends here and becomes a paved road for the rest of the rim trail. You can take the shuttle to the final stop here, or ride it back to the village.

12. Pima Point

This is the last viewpoint on the Rim trail (although there are still more views, don't worry). There is fairly dense tree cover near the edge, but the unrestricted views allow you to see for over 40 miles. You will also be able to see parts of the Hermit Trail below, winding through the canyon.

13. Hermits Rest

The last stop along the rim trail, and the final shuttle stop. If you have made it this far, you have seen some amazing views and are likely ready for some refreshments. There is a small gift shop and snack bar here, or you can catch the shuttle back to the village where you can sit down, grab an ice cream cone, and look though the hundreds of... More