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Grand Canyon National Park: Exploring the North and South Rims

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7 Days | 6 Nights
Road Scholar has thousands of educational adventures to choose from. A good way to narrow down our list is to browse our collection of "Most Popular" programs.
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EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Mary from Partlow, VA Number of programs attended: 5
Date attended: 10/07/14 - 10/13/14
The fact that this program took us to both rims was great. Our guide was knowlegable and very familiar with the area, and told us to feel free to deviate from the program if we wanted (however, I feel the program presentations are a large part of what we're paying for). The airplane flight was spectacular! However - a couple things to know before you choose this program. The interpretive aspect was about 95% about geology. If you are more interested in the biology of the area, you will get little of that and may well be disappointed. Secondly, although the description of the program indicates you will have free time, it is in such small chunks as to be pretty useless. This is especially true at the south rim, where you have to factor in shuttle bus times before doing anything. Lastly, this is a large group - 36 people in our case. If you have been used to smaller groups (as we were), you may find the the length of time just to get off the bus, and the long line at restrooms, etc. not to be to your liking.

Sherrie from Alhambra, CA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 10/07/14 - 10/13/14
The Grand Canyon was one of the most spectacular sights I have ever seen! Our group leader, Jennifer, was knowledgeable, organized and funny. All of the people on our trip were kind and easy to get along with. I signed up for a double room, even though I was traveling solo. My roommate and I got along from the moment we met! This was a week I will never forget!

Bonnie from Redmond, WA Number of programs attended: 6
Date attended: 10/07/14 - 10/13/14
This North and South Rim Grand Canyon trip was just spectacular! Jennifer Belz is an outstanding leader and guide who knows the Canyon first hand as someone who has lived and worked within the Canyon and has vast knowledge of the geology, the River, the history of the people who came and established themselves. The cabins on the Rims are small and adequate, but the North Rim has been updated and is a little more comfortable. Sound of neighbors in cabins at both Rims can be a little challenging. Views at North Rim are tremendous! But, South Rim views are great, as well. Three of us decided to take a three hour mule ride on the North Rim to Supai Tunnel in the afternoon of our full day and absolutely loved the experience--this was not part of the Road Scholar Program and we did this on our own, but we very much enjoyed the experience! All that we had learned about this Rim and the Canyon could be experienced on the mule ride. Keep in mind, that the ride is certainly at your own expense and is not for everyone. Food at North Rim Lodge was the best, but no matter where we ate there was always more than we needed, of course. Sunsets, sunrises, nature walks, viewpoints, tour of the Village all brought excitement and wonder. What a great trip this was! People in our group were friendly, thoughtful, and just plain fun!

Neil from Rockton, IL Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 10/07/14 - 10/13/14
If you are going to see the Grand Canyon for the first time. OR if you want to really see it in the best way possible. This program (trip) is a definite must. The sights are unbelievable . Leave the driving and planning to Road Scholar. They do an outstanding job and your best interests come first. Have been to the Grand Canyon prior to this trip..But this trip was a real eye opener. A person can describe it, but until you see it yourself not imaginable . Made a number of Road Scholar trips , all good . But this was the best one and the guide (Jen) was an individual who made the trip extremely enjoyable. Thank you Road Scholar... Until the next program...

Paula from Falls Church, VA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 10/07/14 - 10/13/14
Our trip leader from Northern Arizona University helped us to fully experience the Grand Canyon -- its history, geology, flora and fauna -- and she made it fun! We kept a steady pace but never felt rushed, and there was plenty of time to do the things that interested us individually, whether that was hiking, taking pictures, or shopping for souvenirs. There were nature walks and group-led hikes, but we were also encouraged to break off and do our own thing. On long travel days we made interesting stops along the way to break up the trip. Overall, it couldn't have been better!

Cheryl from Oskaloosa, IA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 10/07/14 - 10/13/14
You cannot go wrong with this trip! While most of our time was filled with activities, many of them are optional, so you can go off on your own if you want. Everything is planned for you--meals and accommodations--and the educational portion enhances the experience ten-fold.

Newell from Coon Rapids, MN Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 09/06/14 - 09/12/14
The Grand Canyon is breathtaking. You have to see it to believe it. Photos and film cannot do justice to this great attraction. With Road Scholar all details are taken care of, and all you have to do is just enjoy the trip.

Gloridel from Snellville, GA Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 09/06/14 - 09/12/14
This is a terrific program. If you want to experience the Grand Canyon in all its grandeur, this is the one to choose.

Claire from Rustin, WA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 09/06/14 - 09/12/14
This was our first with RS and we will be back. Bruce was a sensitive and fun leader and extremely knowledgable. His technical competence as a geologist explaining things to a non- scientific audience was great. The plane trip on the South Rim and the North Rim Lodge were highlights of this amazing natural wonder. The accommodations at Maswik are adequate, but worn, and the cabins on the North Rim are cute, but baths need updating. Food was generally good, but treat yourself to a night at the steakhouse at the South Rim. The Carlton Canyon (Arizona) Sangiovese was very good! Skip the lousy prime rib at the North Rim Lodge, but other NAU menu items are good for dinner and the breakfast buffet is great! Enjoying the beauty on the decks of the Lodge in an Adirondack chair is heavenly.

James from Brockton, MA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 09/06/14 - 09/12/14
Great trip. Our knowledgeable guide, Bruce, our skilled driver, George and our considerate fellow travelers combined with good food, comfortable accommodations and other-worldly vistas to give us a lifetime of memories. Many thanks to Road Scholars. This was our second trip...many more to come!

Sylvia from Cumberland, MD Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 09/06/14 - 09/12/14
Wonderful program! Bruce, our fearless leader, was well-informed, kind and patient with the endlesss needs of 38 people. Highlights were flight over canyon and the circa 1930 lodge and cabins on the North Rim. Our driver, George was also patient and helpful and always upbeat! Food good with the exception of poor quality wraps and salads at Best Western. Give this program a 9 out of 10!

June W. from Boone, NC Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 09/06/14 - 09/12/14
Stunning and awesome!!

Patricia from Albany, NY Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 05/31/14 - 06/06/14
What a wonderful adventure. Bruce our coordinator was outstanding. His knowledge, humor, & over all caring was wonderful. George,our driver, made our long time on the road safe & as comfortable as he could. Both were great men to share one on one time. I couldn't begin to pick which was my best experience, everything was different & exciting. Even better than my imagination could conjure up. The people I had a chance to meet & exchange stories with were warm & inviting. Thank you to all for making my life a little better. P.S. Claire, I want to send out a special "Thanks" to you. You are a special lady!

Amy from Harwich, MA Number of programs attended: 5
Date attended: 05/31/14 - 06/06/14
The Grand Canyon had been on our bucket list, and this was our first trip to the Southwest. What a wonderful introduction to both with Bruce as our tour guide! Bus trips were long, but Bruce's geological & historical knowledge coupled with his ability at storytelling more than made up for it. The added stops along the way not only made up for the ride, but were exceptional. Since the South Rim & North Rim are so different, visiting both is a must with keeping the order as is. It is difficult to choose one or two experiences that were standouts because each was well planned to add to the experience. Spending time with people from all over the U.S. made the trip more enjoyable. Accommodations were fine with cabins at the North Rim being less spacious, but more comfortable. A special thank you for taking such good care in meeting our dietary needs. A friend asked, "So how was it?" Our quick, unison response, "Awesome!"

Allene from Cincinnati, OH Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 05/31/14 - 06/06/14
The Grand Canyon trip should be on everyone's "bucket list". The Grand Canyon is so beautiful and inspiring to see how these rocks have been carved out and maintained by nature.

Joan from Plano, TX Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 05/31/14 - 06/06/14
Our leader, Bruce, was instrumental in making this a great trip during our early June trip. He was adaptable, entertaining, knowledgeable about many topics and was able to share that knowledge in an understandable way. The South Rim is much more 'commercial' than the North and with warmer temperatures. The cabins are older and not as pleasant as well as being hot during the day. The food was so-so and available in a kind of 'food court' situation...entrees, pasta, grill etc in different areas of the dining hall. The airplane ride was great as well as the sunset viewing. The North Rim dining was very good.It had a great buffet breakfast The seating was by maitre'd for the meals. The cabins were small (don't need a lot of room) and recently updated so everything was clean and fresh. The North Rim had more trees and wooded paths and a great lodge to relax in. Glad this was the 2nd location..a better way to close the vacation. You were able to do as much or as little as you wanted with sufficient free time at both rims. Note: it is very dry at these high altitudes so be sure to have a refillable water bottle as well as saline solution for eyes and/or nose. The cabins do have some great lotions for dry skin. Hand wash only as laundry facilities not available. Visiting both rims was good as both had their highlights which shouldn't be missed.

Linda from Lilburn, GA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 05/18/14 - 05/24/14
This was a great introduction to the Grand Canyon. The South Rim had lots to see, and another day there would have permitted the ability to see more of the sites. The North Rim offered different views and a wonderful lodge. Information provided by Matt was helpful in learning about the area. He also spotted a condor at the Navajo Bridge! Enjoyed the short airplane ride over the canyon. This was my first Road Scholar trip, and it was a fun traveling group.

Eleanor from Davis, CA Number of programs attended: 9
Date attended: 05/18/14 - 05/24/14
A great way to see both the South and North rims. Excellent leader who helped me understand the eons of geological life which resulted in the beauty before us. I also liked the optional leisure time for just enjoying it all. Highly recommended!

Susan from Memphis, TN Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 05/18/14 - 05/24/14
This was an interesting adventure - met lots of nice people, explored both the North & South rims, & took a slightly shortened airplane ride! This was my 3rd RS adventure! I was introduced enough that I want to go back to further explore the South Rim and Bryce Canyon.

Ellen from Chicago, IL Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 08/18/13 - 08/24/13
This was our first Road Scholar tour. Our group was small, we traveled in one 13 passenger van. The other travelers in our group were friendly and fun to be with. Our guide, Bruce Banker was amazing. He knows the Grand Canyon so well, and took a lot of care to ensure that every single person had a good time. This was a great tour to start with, we felt that we really got to see the Grand Canyon from many perspectives. The North Rim was our favorite part of the trip, but there were so many good experiences. Marble Canyon and Lee's Ferry were spectacular. We would highly recommend the Northern Arizona University Program Provider, Road Scholar and Bruce Banker. We definitely plan to do more Road Scholar trips in the future.

Shirl from Green Valley, AZ Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 10/01/13 - 10/07/13
The Road Scholar staff and the Northern Arizona University Program Provider and Program Leader did an outstanding job in providing me with a high quality program and exciting program despite the fact that the Grand Canyon was closed (due to the government shutdown). I was able to tour the Grand Canyon via a plane fly over, helicopter flight , and rafting down the Colorado river! Several other points of interested were added to this program as well making this a very educational and outstanding trip. Since this was an October 1, 2013 trip the changes were made at short notice and at a difficult time. The above mentioned professional staff handled the situation with excellent decision making and flawless. Thank you so very much for this excellent adventure! Shirl Schultz 10/08/2013

Joan from Monessen, PA Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 09/13/13 - 09/19/13
A wonderful experience with the most gracious of all groups. I had the opportunity to visit the North, South, East, and West rims along with rafting on the Colorado River by combining back-to-back trips. And, I am so glad for the opportunity since it gave me a chance to experience the Canyon from both perspectives--looking up and looking down. I am humbled by the magnitude of it all. Although I would urge everyone to visit the South Rim for all the history that took place there, I feel so fortunate to have had the opportunity to indulge in the serenity and beauty of the North Rim. My mind shall return there often. You were the best of groups to travel with. Mike, Amy, Lonnie--thank you for your humor, knowledge, camaraderie, and patience. We couldn't have expected better.

Carl from Cape Coral, FL Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 09/08/13 - 09/14/13
This was my first Road Scholar trip and as a solo traveler and I never felt like a third wheel. My group travelers were great and were a large part of making it one fantastic trip. It was like a group of friends. Our guide, Jeff Strang & Dave Hall were terrific too, and perfect for the job, They were a great at making it fun for everyone. There was never a dull moment in the vans(or the entire trip). Our group traveled in two vans & I switched to the other van during the stops. It gave me a different perspective & knowledge of every aspect of the canyon - geology, botany, etc. I was impressive how Jeff & Dave could get as detailed as you wanted on any topic. It was a amazing adventure.

Margaret from Miromar Lakes, FL Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 09/13/13 - 09/19/13
My husband and I loved the trip. The Guide Mike knows everything. He is fun, kind and attentive. The Guide Amy was a wonderful partner bringing her own humor and graciousness to all encounters. I loved that we stayed in the park at both north and south rims. The group of 36 other travels were fun, friendly and interesting to get to know. That being said, I don't know if I would travel with Road Scholar again as our first night accommodations at the Scottsdale Cottonwood was horrendous. I have posted pictures on Trip Advisor. Mike gave us his room for the last night, the second night at Cottonwood and it was better but I would never stay in this hotel again. RS says it is a 4 star hotel but if you read the reviews on Trip Advisor, many people had similar experiences as my husband and I. I was also disappointed about the food on the trip. In the parks, it was OK. Just to be in the parks is worth anything. WE had one stop at a restaurant that had a recent fire and they made homemade fresh food that was very good. Food is very important to us, so I don't know if RS is for us. Glad we went to this one.

Richard from West Chester, OH Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 09/13/13 - 09/19/13
What a wonderful experience! The group leaders, Mike and Amy, were tremendous. We looked forward to this trip for a long time and it was everything we expected.

Carolyn from Rocky Mount, NC Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 09/13/13 - 09/19/13
My husband and I celebrated our 49th wedding anniversary by going to the South and North Rim of the Grand Canyon with Road Scholar. Wow, w3hat a wonderful trip we had! We are now ready for the next 50 years of our life, and planning a new trip with Road Scholar!

Marcia from New Auburn, WI Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 09/08/13 - 09/14/13
This trip was wonderful, it activities were varied. We rode in the NAU vans, which were comfortable and had big windows. The guides/drives (Jeff & Dave) took great care of us and our needs. It is a well organized trip, with much to see and do. We not only got to see the Canyon but many other sites along the way. We even ate lunch at The Resurrection Restaurant. All the food was wonderful, and there was plenty, you will not go hungry. If you had special diet needs they were accommodated as much as possible. My favorite was the North Rim with its huge lodge and patios overlooking the canyon. If you are looking for a place to "veg" out, with the beauty of creation surrounding you, try the North Rim. This trip is well worth the cost, it was a trip of a lifetime!

Martha from Vancouver, WA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 09/08/13 - 09/14/13
The program seeing the North and South Rim was wonderful. The views take your breath away. We also got to see and experience other places and see more going up and coming back from the Grand Canyon. The guides were absolutely wonderful. We all learned a lot. It is very much worth going on. Sun rises and sunset are beautiful. Go and enjoy the beauty.

Kathleen from Bellingham, WA Number of programs attended: 7
Date attended: 09/08/13 - 09/14/13
Whether you've been to the Grand Canyon on your own, seriously consider selecting a Road Scholar program. Having just returned from a visit that included the South and the North Rims, I can say with confidence that I learned more, saw more, enjoyed more, and generally came away with a renewed respect for our wonderful earth and the ways in which it has changed and been changed by something so simple as water. I know really understand the Canyon as the DUDE* it is (*created by deposition, uplift, down-churning, and erosion. Many thanks to our two leaders and to the new friends I made on this trip!

Joanna from Wilmington, NC Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 06/09/13 - 06/15/13
I just returned from a Road Scholar trip to the north and south rims of the Grand Canyon and it was the experience of a lifetime! Of course, the scenery at the canyon is majestic and unforgettable, but our group leader made the whole experience more meaningful by teaching us to look more deeply into the geology, history, pre-history, local flora and fauna of this region. Lest you think such a trip is too much lecture and not enough action, let me reassure you that the hikes down the Bright Angel Trail and to Overlook Point went through some beautiful country below the rim of the canyon and were vigorous workouts as well. There were so many fascinating and breathtaking things to see that I really hope to come back again soon.

Loretta from Eastlake, OH Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 06/09/13 - 06/15/13
Great opportunity to visit both the South and North Rim of the spectacular Grand Canyon with a chance to dip your feet into the Colorado River at Lee's Ferry. Learned lots about the geology and history of the GC thanks to a great group leader/instructor. Highly recommend this trip to everyone. What a majestic place the Grand Canyon is!!!

Margaret from Centennial, CO Number of programs attended: 26
Date attended: 05/21/13 - 05/27/13
This is an excellent trip for both the first timer or one returning to a favorite place. There is time for both individual exploration or contemplation as well as group activities. The drives from Phoenix to the Canyon and its environs are an opportunity to see some spectacular scenery and to learn about those areas from expert guides in van-sized groups. And, sleeping in a cozy National Park cabin is an added treat.

Jacqueline from New Milford, CT Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 05/21/13 - 05/27/13
I just attended the May 21-27 tour of the North and South Rims. All I can say is "Wow!" I am grateful to have had the opportunity to view the canyon not only from both rims but also from below the rim. This was my first Road Scholar tour, but it won't be my last. Our leader, Stewart Lasseter, was among the most knowledgeable guides I have met. The depth of information he shared with us about the geology and natural history of the canyon areas was surpassed only by his enthusiasm for the area and passion for protecting it. And the other members of the group always made this solo traveler feel welcome. If you haven't seen the Grand Canyon with Road Scholar, you need to put it on your wishlist. (And make sure you go to the North Rim!)

Linda Wallace from Saint Louis, MO Number of programs attended: 6
Date attended: 05/21/13 - 05/27/13
Visiting both the South and North Rims of the Grand Canyon gave us a variety of unique perspectives on the grandeur and vastness of the canyon. We were able to experience sunrises, sunsets, hikes "below the rim" and splendid overviews on both sides. Our leader, Stewart Lasseter was outstanding, giving articulate, fascinating, in-depth commentary about geology, history, indigenous people, etc., throughout the trip, and communicating his strong advocacy for preserving the canyon and its environment. Traveling with a very congenial small group (18) made the experience thoroughly enjoyable. I highly recommend this program!

Elizabeth from Mandeville, LA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 05/21/13 - 05/27/13
What a wonderful trip to the Grand Canyon visiting both the South and North Rim. Felt like I was in another world with nothing but beauty and history surrounding me. Could have spent a month there easily. Was impressed with Mary Elizabeth Jane Colter and what she envisioned and built. Great group of people to share this beauty with. Great work Road Scholar.

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"Looking down on the Colorado River from our plane." Uploaded By: Sherrie
"Looking down on the Colorado River from our plane." Uploaded By: Sherrie

"This condor was under the Navajo Bridge" Uploaded By: Patricia

"Flying high" Uploaded By: Patricia

"The photo of this beautiful California Condor was taken on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon." Uploaded By: Nancy

"Bruce Banker took us to enjoy the glorious sunset on the South Rim " Uploaded By: Nancy

"North Rim Grand Canyon" Uploaded By: Linda

"South Rim Grand Canyon" Uploaded By: Linda

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"Driving to the North Rim in Marble Canyon" Uploaded By: Carl

"Traveling during monsoon session gave me an new view of the Grand Canyon." Uploaded By: Carl

"Transept Trail - North Rim" Uploaded By: Lisa

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"Sunrise - North Rim" Uploaded By: Lisa

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at no additional cost on this date ...
6 nights of accommodations
17 meals: 6 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 6 dinners
3 Expert-led lectures
9 Field trips


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