Ain't She Grand? Tips For Visiting The Grand Canyon With Kids #familytravel

My family and I just returned from a two week road trip across the United States, and boy, are we exhausted! The first leg of our journey to Disneyland was very uneventful, but I did pick up some excellent family road trip tips along the way that I will share with you later this week! In contrast, our return trip was packed with fun and adventure. We stopped in Las Vegas, explored some of Route 66, shopped near the outskirts of the Petrified Forest, and even visited the Grand Canyon National Park.

Danger at the Grand Canyon: #familytravel on the Classic Mommy Blog

When our original plan of driving through Hoover Dam didn't work out (dam bypass!) we decided to spend some more time exploring the Grand Canyon and the area surrounding it. 

Danger really enjoyed looking over the edge at the world below. It amazed her that we were so high up (she even commented that we were on top of the world!) 

Danger at the Grand Canyon: #familytravel on the Classic Mommy Blog

I got a little concerned that she would trip and plunge through the rust-covered fence, but thankfully, this visit was rather uneventful. Danger did manage to trip on the sidewalk, but I happened to be standing between her and an untimely fate.

Danger at the Grand Canyon: #familytravel on the Classic Mommy Blog

The wildlife is fairly abundant, even in the more crowded areas. We saw some new-to-us squirrels, butterflies, and mule deer up close. Check out my Grand Canyon Google+ Album for more details of our trip (and make sure to circle me while you're there!) 

Tips For Visiting The Grand Canyon With Children

  • Bring your own water and snacks. It's easy to get dehydrated, especially when you spend a lot of time hiking outdoors. And on that note -
  • Wear comfortable shoes. You will walk a lot, and not always on smooth pavement.
  • Bring sunscreen and reapply every two hours. It seems so basic, but sun protection can be easy to forget.
  • Know how to read a map, and follow the map that you are given upon arrival to the park. It lists the best spots to stop and gaze at the canyon, as well as shuttle stops and restrooms.
  • Scope out some of the less-traveled spots before your trip. Lots of people take pictures at the South Rim's Mather Point due to it's proximity to the nearby cities of Flagstaff and Williams. Wouldn't it be unique (and less crowded!) to find a new location to photograph?
  • Bring money to pay for parking. It cost $25 per car when we visited April 2014. The parking fee was a little more than we are accustomed to spending to visit our local Atlanta and Georgia parks, but it was a reasonable price to pay to visit this expansive national landmark.
  • Smaller children might need to be tethered to you for safety. I kept a good grip on Danger's hand, hoodie, or shoulder the entire time. The uneven ground and large drop-offs are definitely something to take note of.
  • Plan to NOT have phone service at the Grand Canyon. Follow the tips that I outlined above, and have a backup plan just in case something goes wrong. You won't know that someone will go missing or get injured until it happens, so be prepared. Something that I found odd: I had full phone service with T-Mobile at the Grand Canyon, while my mother had no service whatsoever with AT&T. We spent the rest of the 2 weeks of our road trip the other way around.

Have you visited the Grand Canyon National Park? If not, is it on your 'bucket list' of family travel destinations?