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Las Vegas to Grand Canyon Route

The glitz and glam of Las Vegas, Nevada make it known as ‘Sin City.' As the saying goes, “Whatever happens here, stays here” doesn’t mean that you’re confined to the boundaries of Las Vegas. The surrounding area in the Nevada desert has many natural beauties and all-American landmarks. By taking Interstate 15 outbound towards the Valley of Fire State Park, weaving through the desert route towards the Grand Canyon, you’ll be mesmerized by the vastness of this state. Marked with National Parks, historical landmarks, epic viewpoints, and endless sandstone canyons, get ready to embark on your Desert Route from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon.


Route info

  • Route name: Las Vegas to Grand Canyon Route
  • Distance: 378 KM
  • Start and end point: Las Vegas to Grand Canyon, Arizona
  • Best by car
  • Suggested duration: 2-3 Days
  • Best time to visit: September through November. March until May. Avoid summer months since it is a desert.
  • Highlights: Las Vegas, Springs Preserve, Valley of Fire State Park, Lake Mead and Grand Canyon.


To find out more about Las Vegas, download “Verrassend Las Vegas” (NL) guide by Harmke Kraak for € 4.99 with offline maps, restaurant recommendations, hotspots, attractions, accommodations and practical tips.



LAS VEGAS – SPRINGS PRESERVE (6 KM)

Las Vegas is unlike any other city; the Stripe is always bustling with things to do - even in the early hours. Start your Vegas exploration at the 'Welcome to Vegas' sign, nearby the Mandalay Bay in the center of the Strip. You can enjoy a tour of the Shark Reef Aquarium, or stop by the Luxor to witness the impeccable glass pyramid and one of the oldest casinos in the city. When in Vegas, you have to go all out and roll out the red carpet for your dining experience. You can choose from a long list of all-you-can-eat-buffets (from the Bacchanal Buffet, Bellagio Buffet, The Buffet at the Wynn), or indulge in fine dining at the famous Nobu Restaurant. Of course, the surrounding casinos may entice you to gamble your luck against the house (but the house always wins). Or if that’s not to your liking, then catch one of the many famous shows along the Stripe, such as Cirque du Soleil, Blue Man Group, Penn & Teller or Zumanity. Leaving behind the hustle and bustle of Las Vegas, you’ll arrive at Springs Preserve, an oasis in the middle of the desert.




Las Vegas Strip


SPRINGS PRESERVE – VALLEY OF FIRE STATE PARK (33 KM)

Your next destination on your route is Springs Preserve, a botanical garden that has the largest collection of cacti and succulent plants, displaying more than 110 acres of Mojave desert habitat and natural wildlife. On the property, you’ll find that it’s not just a garden, but is the locale for a concert hall, museums, open-air event area, galleries, and intertwining trailheads that lead into the Wetlands. Find tranquility in this desert haven, as you take your time exploring the hiking trails. After getting lost in this pristine oasis, make your way to the Valley of Fire State Park.

VALLEY OF FIRE STATE PARK – LAKE MEAD (99 KM)

Just 95 kilometers east of Las Vegas is the Valley of Fire State Park, known for its brilliantly red Aztec sandstone outcrop. The route to the state park will bring you through the desolate part of the Nevada landscape on Interstate 15. It is one of the oldest and largest national parks in the state, where some of the ancient remains of trees and rock formations date back to 2000 years ago and spanning across 46.000 acres. Entering the park will cost $10 per vehicles. Discover the petroglyphs (carvings and etchings left on rock surfaces depicting parietal art) at Atlatl Rock, admire the rock formation at Arch Rock, or start a desert trail at Mouse’s Tank. Have you ever wanted to camp in the desert, you can do that here in the Valley of Fire.




Valley of Fire State Park



LAKE MEAD - HOOVER DAM (13 KM)

Your Nevada adventure has brought you to the flashy city of Las Vegas, and the brightly lit Valley of Fire State Park, now it’s time to unwind with the surrounding nature at Lake Mead. Winding through the desert road will take you up to Lake Mead National Recreational Area, the locale is center to Lake Mead and Lake Mojave. There is plenty to offer regarding sports fishing, boating, panicking, camping, and desert hikes. One of these famous hikes is at Pipe Spring, where you can uncover the geological spectacles that is granite peaks. For a quintessential desert scenery, you’ll need to head to Redstone, just off Northshore Road, where you’ll be surrounded by ancient dunes and outcrops. Rent a kayak and travel down the Black Canyon to view the awe-inspiring wildlife and scenery. There are more than 500 species and 900 plant life that inhabit the park, so keep an eye out for any desert residents.

HOOVER DAM - GRAND CANYON SKYWALK (157 KM)

One of the United State’s most impressive ingenuity of the 20th century is the Hoover Dam. The gargantuan project was completed in 1936 with the idea to produce hydroelectric power from the Colorado River. Every year, the 726-foot dam draws one million travelers to Black Canyon, which includes tours of the Powerplant, where you can visit part of the facilities and take an elevator up to a panoramic platform. Admire the “Winged Figures of the Republic” bronze status from the Visitor Center, or cruise down the Colorado River on a canoe, kayak or raft to indulge your adventurous side.




Hoover Dam


GRAND CANYON SKYWALK

The Skywalk is one of the most picturesque attractions of the Grand Canyon. The 4.000-foot high glass bridge will trick your mind into thinking that you're walking on air – not for the faint of heart. It extends in a horseshoe shape over 70 feet off the edge of the Western Rim of the Grand Canyon. The Skywalk is located on American Native reserve land and operated by the Hualapai Tribe, who have inhabited the Southwest for generations and are known as the “People of the Tall Pines.” The tribe also operates a hotel, restaurant, gift shop in Peach Springs on Highway 66. You can take a self-guided tour of the Hualapai village, which displays traditional houses, sweat lodges, and architectural styles that have been adapted to withstand the harsh desert environment for generations. After your harrowing walk on the Skywalk, head over to Guano Point, where you can enjoy a quick cafeteria-style eatery with the Grand Canyon scenery as your backdrop.




Skywalk


To find out more about Las Vegas, download “Verrassend Las Vegas” (NL) guide by Harmke Kraak for € 4.99 with offline maps, restaurant recommendations, hotspots, attractions, accommodations and practical tips.





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This post was in collaboration with ThumbRides, a peer-to-peer rideshare platform for travel in the United States. Their community of riders and drivers make cross-country roadtrips simple and cost effective.






Mojave Desert





Camping in the Desert





Las Vegas





Canyon Outcrop in Valley of Fire State Park


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