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just previewing what i need to see

Boston, MA
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just previewing what i need to see

hi,

i am from boston and looking for a fun, cheap way to see, hike and enjoy the grand canyon. i will prob rent a car to make it easier...but am willing to use public transportation. i a, planning on coming in july as i am a teacher and that is vacation. i want to hike all over. i am going alone, so it needs to be safe too.

what are some must sees and what is the easiest way to get to everything.

Sedona, AZ
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for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
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1. Re: just previewing what i need to see

http://www.nps.gov/grca/index.htm

For practical purposes there is no public transportation to the GCNP. using shuttles would be more costly and time consuming than simply renting a car.

Use the park website to learn your options for visiting and hiking in the park. Doing day hikes from the rim is easy to plan and relatively simple. Camping below the rim requires permits that are issued 4 months in advance on a lottery system. You would need to book right now for any remaining campsites on the rim. Park lodging also generally books as much as a year in advance.

I'm not trying to discourage you. Just letting you know that you will have a hard time finding accommodations for July at this late date. Do the research and try though, because people do book and then cancel. You might catch an opening.

I suggest that you plan a visit to the GCNP along with time in Sedona. Sedona is half way between PHX and the GCNP and a great compliment to the GCNP, especially for hiking.

www.visitsedona.com

tucson az
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for Tucson, Arizona, Northern Mexico
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2. Re: just previewing what i need to see

I recommend that you explore the information here in the Top Questions at right in this forum. Also explore the park web site: http://www.nps.gov/grca

It would be best to use a rental car to get to GCNP as RedRox has told you. Once at the park, you can use shuttles to get around in the central GC Village area and the west rim road to Hermit's Rest. You can use your car to travel along the east rim. The park is very safe.

The only viable public transportation modes to the GCNP area are bus and Amtrak train. Both require some careful planning to get to the park and do require using private shuttle services or the GCRR tourist train to get to the park.

Toronto, Canada
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for Algonquin Provincial Park
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3. Re: just previewing what i need to see

Lots of great hikes in Sedona and Flagstaff area, although temperatures will affect how far you can go. We loved hiking down part way into the canyon (we were there in January however) which gives you a unique look different than from the rim. As above find accommodation first and work from there.

Ann Arbor, Michigan
Destination Expert
for Grand Canyon National Park
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4. Re: just previewing what i need to see

>> i am from boston and looking for a fun, cheap way to see, hike and enjoy the grand canyon.

As RedRox indicated, lodging reservations for July may take some work. I would call Xanterra directly (888-297-2757) instead of relying on their website for up-to-date availability. Also, ask specifically about Bright Angel Lodge rooms (note to inquire about "lodge rooms", not the cabins.) These are the least expensive rooms in the Grand Canyon and, in my opinion, perfect for budget solo visitors. Rooms are rustic but perfectly fine and are in a great location. Rooms with shared and private baths are available for well under $100.

Also, a great cheap option is to camp. Mather Campground takes reservations (recreation.gov) and I'm seeing lots of availability for July (so far.) July on the South Rim should be very pleasant for camping. You can rent camping equipment at the General Store, which has a very decent gear department.

My recommendation would be to fly into Las Vegas and rent a car. Browse the internet (as well as Costco, AAA, etc.) for rental car "promo codes" and you should be able to rent a car pretty reasonably. I generally pay $80-120 per week for a rental car (that's total with all the fees, taxes, etc.) The roads are fine and you don't need any special cars, clearance, etc. I always reserve the smallest car with Alamo but I don't think I've ever been given one... usually end up with a midsize. Speed limits are high and, with the new Hoover Dam bypass bridge on 93, I can get there in about 4-1/2 hours *with* a short stop for food.

"I want to hike all over" in the Grand Canyon is a pretty tall order! You'll have to tell us what kind of hiking you're interested in doing. Hiking in the Grand Canyon can be anything from casual to very strenuous.

Shreveport...
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5. Re: just previewing what i need to see

Definitely take the recommendations and call Xanterra directly. The website showed us no options for our stay in June the first day I checked, then one room option the next day that I wasn't too sure about (no AC which concerned me although I've since read its not really necessary).

In any case I called the direct reservation line and got a room at Thunderbird with view. Definitely worth the phone call! Their cancellation policy is so fantastic that I'm sure things change often.

6. Re: just previewing what i need to see

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