After a long day of driving through the Utah and Arizona countryside through Monument Valley we made it to the entrance of the Grand Canyon National Park. It happened to be a long weekend when we arrived so there was a wait to get through the toll booth but only around 45 minutes. We were entering on Desert View Drive after turning off just after Cameron and it takes about 35 minutes to get to the East Entrance Station.
Just past the toll booth is the first eastern lookout for the Southern Rim. I was so excited to finally see THE Grand Canyon, and was ready to have my breath taken away by the view and well.. it was super disappointing! It was jam packed I felt like I was in a tin of sardines and I could barely even get close to the edge to see anything. I also think I may have ruined it for myself by having really really high expectations that this lookout just wasn’t meeting and the a long day of driving didn’t help, so we decided to leave this lookout and see if there was another one a bit quieter with a better view.
Thankfully there are a lot of lookouts so we drove a short way down the road and found a few lookouts with far less people and were able to actually take in the beauty of the site. Once we got here I could really feel how spectacular the view was and it finally sunk in that I was visiting this beautiful landmark.
There are only a few (expensive!) accommodation options right at the Grand Canyon so we stayed at the Red Feather Hotel in the Grand Canyon Village which is about 15 minutes out from the south rim. We arrived so late in the day there was not much time for exploring although it is really just hotels and food options. We paid an exorbitant amount for pizza I would compare food prices in the village to Zurich Switzerland! but it was really tasty and there had no been a lot of options for food or drink on the drive so it was much appreciated.
We set our alarms super early and drove out to Grandview Point to watch the sunrise an it was so worth it! So many tourist attractions end up being overrated and that’s sort of how I felt the day before but watching the sunrise was so majestic and calm, it absolutely exceeded my expectations. We were lucky that only a few other people were at our lookout so we could easily walk around and embrace the serenity. The coolest part for me was how the shadows and lighting over the canyon changed quickly as the sun was coming up, I literally could not stop taking photos.
Once the sun was up it was time to head on back to the village and pack our bags as we were headed to Vegas!
Great photos, on my bucket list for sure! I usually have high expectations too! I’m trying to lower them…a lot ! lol
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It’s an amazing place. I always think photos don’t do it justice and to be honest I was preparing myself to be disappointed. I think it’s so much better in real life! It’s a shame you didn’t have a great experience at the first viewpoint, but at least you got to enjoy it after!
It is definitely an amazing place that can’t properly be captured in a photo!
Awesome photos! A friend hiked the Grand Canyon 2 months ago.
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Thank you, I bet they had a wonderful time!