Winding road trip through Zion National Park

2-Day Road Trip: Bryce Canyon, North Rim, Zion & Antelope

Take an EPIC canyon road trip! Even in only two days, you can have an incredible road trip seeing 4 famous US canyons: Bryce Canyon, Zion Canyon, Grand Canyon North Rim and Antelope Canyon. This packed GUIDE has all you need to know, whether visiting southern Utah and northern Arizona from Las Vegas, Salt Lake City, Denver, Phoenix or Albuquerque.

If you want to visit Antelope Canyon, be sure to check my post that compares 4 excellent Antelope Slot Canyon hikes. Two are busy; two are not. All are stunning.

2-day canyon road trip: Zion Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Grand Canyon North Rim, and Antelope Canyon
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Each of these canyons is uniquely stunning; none are “meh” or similar to another. This 2-day canyon road trip will give you a quick but varied and vivid appreciation for this amazing area.

My first experience with Bryce Canyon, Zion Canyon and Grand Canyon North Rim was with my retired parents, who love driving. But hiking? Not so much. They’re snowbirds and I tagged along for the ride. For us, this was an amazing 2-day stop between Salt Lake City and Las Vegas. So, I’ll share a simple itinerary to get the most of this area, plus easy hikes and important visitor information, too.

Note: If you’re coming from the south or east, like Phoenix, Denver or Albuquerque, I suggest swapping the Day 1 and Day 2 itineraries.


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Here we go!

Road Trip Day 1: ZION Canyon and BRYCE Canyon

Zion Canyon and Bryce Canyon are about 2 hours apart, so it’s pretty common to see these two canyons on the same day of your road trip. Another reason why these two are so great to see together is that they’re very different from each other and both so incredibly beautiful. Each one will take your breath away, but for different reasons.

How to plan Day 1 of your canyon road trip:

    • Morning: Zion Canyon
    • Afternoon: Bryce Canyon
    • Evening: Stay near Bryce Canyon, or drive to Page or Grand Canyon North Rim

I recommend visiting Zion Canyon right away in the morning and then Bryce Canyon in the afternoon. Zion Canyon is much busier than Bryce Canyon (4.5 million visitors every year compared to 2.6 million at Bryce) and it gets much hotter in the summer. So, it’s smart to visit Zion Canyon in the morning before the rush and before the heat of the day. Also, Bryce Canyon will treat you to a beautiful sunset.

After you experience these two remarkable canyons, you have a few options for the evening. You could stay at Bryce Canyon and take in the full moon hike. Maybe you’d like to drive to Page or Grand Canyon North Rim (depending on which one you’re seeing first on day 2), but you’ll be driving in the dark. Or, stay somewhere in between (I found a fabulous place for you to consider! Don’t miss the “Where to Stay” section!).

We went back to our RV spot near Zion Canyon, but detoured through the scenic Dixie National Forest.

Key driving distances and driving times for day 1:

  • ZION Canyon Visitor Center to BRYCE Canyon Visitor Center: 1 hour 50 minutes (85 miles/137 km)
  • ZION Canyon Visitor Center to PAGE: 2 hours 20 minutes (116 miles/187 km)
  • ZION Canyon Visitor Center to Grand Canyon NORTH RIM: 2.75 hours (122 miles/196 km)
  • BRYCE Canyon Visitor Center to PAGE: 2 hours 40 minutes (152 miles/245 km)
  • BRYCE Canyon Visitor Center to Grand Canyon NORTH RIM: 3 hours (157 miles/253 km)

ZION National Park: Easy Hikes and Visitor Information

Canyon road trip takes you into Zion Canyon, Utah
Winding Virgin River at Riverside Park, Zion Canyon

Zion Canyon is a fantastic first canyon to see on your road trip because you’re immediately engulfed as you enter at the canyon floor. The thousand-foot red walls shoot straight up all around you and swallow you up. A single road takes you deep inside, with the option of continuing on by foot into a deep, narrow chasm (aka “The Narrows”). Or, you can go vertical!

Zion Canyon gave me an immediate and lasting impression of what it feels like to be a bug. Yup, a tiny little insect. But in a good, this-world-is-so-big-and-amazing sort of way.

Here’s what you need to know to have an easy and fun visit to Zion Canyon.

Three easy hikes in Zion Canyon:

  • Pa’rus Trail (Visitor Center to Canyon Junction): It’s an hour of paved trail along the Virgin River. Once you get to the Junction, hop on a shuttle to see the rest of the canyon.
  • Lower Emerald Pool Trail (Zion Lodge to Lower Emerald Pool): This 1 hour round-trip trail is paved with “minor” drop-offs. You’re rewarded with some lovely waterfalls.
  • Riverside Walk (Temple of Sinawava to The Narrows): This 1.5 hour round-trip trail is also paved. It starts at the last shuttle stop and follows the Virgin River where the cliffs narrow above you.

Key visitor information for Zion Canyon:

  • Season: Open year-round (shuttle from March to late-November)
  • Park Hours: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (but not facilities)
  • Visitor Center Hours: Daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Spring/Fall), 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Summer), and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Winter); closed Christmas
  • Fees (all valid for 7 days): $20/person or $35/vehicle with all of its occupants

The Zion National Park website is a fantastic resource for important information like weather warnings, trail closures, shuttle how-to, and park maps.

March to Late November: Park in Springdale and take the shuttle

When the shuttle is running, you’re not allowed to take your car into the canyon.

Parking fills up quickly in the morning but you can try the Visitor Center; if there isn’t space, there’s lots of parking in Springdale along the free shuttle route. The Springdale shuttle runs past many hotels and takes you to the Visitor’s Center, where you hop aboard the Park shuttle. Shuttles run every 7-10 minutes (depending on the season).

Parking is available throughout Springdale along Highway 9 (the main road through town), which is also the route of the free Zion Canyon shuttle. Easy-peasy.

There are 9 shuttle stops heading into Zion Canyon (starting at the south end of town, heading north):

  • Majestic View Lodge
  • Park House Cafe/Silver Bear Enterprises
  • Quality Inn & Suites Montclair/Driftwood Lodge
  • Bit & Spur/Hampton Inn/Holiday Inn Express
  • Zion Pizza & Noodle Co/Bumbleberry Inn
  • Desert Pearl Inn
  • Flanigan’s Inn/Whiptail Grill
  • Cafe Soleil/Thai Sapa/Cliffrose
  • Zion Canyon Village
Late November to February: Scenic Drive Road Trip!

From late November through February, you can take your own vehicle along the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive. I’ve never done this so I have no idea how it’d be. While the scenery would be stunning, I’m thinking that a shorter all-wheel drive vehicle would be best for easy turning and dealing with snow.

Have you driven the Scenic Drive in winter? I’d love to hear your experience in the comments below.

USA National Parks Explorer

USA National Parks Explorer

Explore all the natural and urban beauty that western US offers. Spend time in the big parks of the States’ Yosemite, Lake Tahoe, Zion, Bryce Canyon, the Grand Canyon and more. Discover a new landscape around every corner: from huge sculpted cliffs and monster trees to alien deserts filled with strange rocks and massive sand dunes. Sip wine in Sonoma, spend time with a Native America tribe and giddy up on a horse ride through the Old West. Overload your senses in Las Vegas and relax in the city of Angels.

BRYCE Canyon National Park: Easy Hikes and Visitor Information

Canyon road trip takes you into Bryce Canyon, Utah
Path through Bryce Canyon hoodoos

Descending into Bryce Canyon made me feel like a giddy child again; it’s like entering a wonderland. The Bryce Canyon Amphitheater is filled with a massive maze of hoodoos that deliver “wow” moments around every corner. I LOVED this place.

I’ve seen hoodoos before, but not like this. Apparently Bryce Canyon has the largest concentration of hoodoos in the world. It’s the ideal game of hide and seek for adults!

If you’re going to pick ONE canyon to explore a bit more on your road trip, I recommend Bryce Canyon.

Easy hikes and other activities in Bryce Canyon:

The hikes at Bryce Canyon are generally pretty easy to tailor to how far you want to go, because the bigger hikes are combinations of smaller ones. You can stay on top of the canyon and enjoy the views from above, or descend into the canyon to get up close and personal with the hoodoos. Keep in mind, though, that what goes down must come up! Another option is to drive the scenic route to the end and try a hike there.

Here are three fairly easy hikes to try at Bryce Canyon:

  • Rim Trail (access at any point between Fairyland Point in the north and Bryce Point in the south): From 1 to 7.5 hours, you can pick how far to go along the rim overlooking Bryce Amphitheater. The trail is paved between Sunrise and Sunset points. Or, join a daily ranger-led, 1.5 hour rim walk (call ahead for times).
  • Queen’s Garden (access from Sunrise Point): From 1 to 2 hours, this is the easiest trail that descends into the hoodoos.
  • Combine Queen’s Garden and Navajo Loop (access from Sunrise or Sunset points): This popular 2-3 hour loop takes you into the canyon and past notable formations like Thor’s Hammer, Two Bridges and Wall Street (steep sections).

TIPS for hiking in Bryce Canyon: Keep in mind that the elevation is high (9000 feet), so take it easier than usual. And horses and mules have the right-of-way on the trails; if you don’t want to see them, you’re best hiking in a clockwise direction. (Although, who doesn’t love horses and mules??)

Find a very helpful map and guide at the bottom of the canyon’s Maps page.

Horseback ride in Bryce Canyon!

How cool is it that you can wander along these stunning hoodoos on the back of a horse?! Take a 2- or 3-hour guided tour. This is especially great for anyone a little worried about hiking in higher elevations or climbing back out.

Tours by horseback run April through October as follows:

  • 2-hour ride to the canyon floor and back ($65/person): leaves at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. Must be 7 years or older and 220 lbs or lighter.
  • 3-hour ride along the Peek-a-boo loop trail ($90/person): leaves at 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. Must be 10 years or older and 220 lbs or lighter.

Key visitor information for Bryce Canyon:

  • Season: Open year-round (shuttle from mid April to late October)
  • Park Hours: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (but not facilities)
  • Visitor Center Hours: Daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (May to September), 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. (April and October), and 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (November to March); closed Thanksgiving and Christmas
  • Fees (all valid for 7 days): $20/person (15 and under are free) without a car, $30/motorbike (regardless of one or two passengers) or $35/vehicle with all its passengers

Visit the Bryce Canyon National Park website for information like trail closures, shuttle how-to and park maps.

Mid April to late October: Free optional shuttle

An optional shuttle is included with your park admission and removes the hassle of fighting for a space inside the park. During the summer, there’s only one parking spot for every four cars that enter Bryce Canyon Park.

You can park at the Shuttle Station near Ruby’s Inn (on the left side of the road before you enter the park). Buses run every 15 minutes and stop at all the fantastic lookout points.

A shuttle also runs south to Rainbow Point, right at the end. It runs twice a day, at 9 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., and is a 3.5 hour round-trip ride with a maximum of 40 people. Reserve your spot (recommended) seven days in advance by calling 435-834-5290. You can also use this shuttle to access the backcountry trailheads.

Road Trip Day 2: ANTELOPE Canyon and GRAND CANYON North Rim

For Day 2 of your canyon road trip, you’ll likely want to plan your itinerary around Antelope Canyon. Driving time between Antelope Canyon and Grand Canyon North Rim is about 2.5 hours.

To see Antelope Canyon, you must reserve a guided tour … sometimes up to six months in advance, depending on the tour and your timing (more information on this below).

How to plan Day 2 of your canyon road trip:

  • If your Antelope Canyon tour is in the MORNING: tour Antelope Canyon first, stop at Horseshoe Bend, and finish with a sunset view at Grand Canyon North Rim.
  • If your Antelope Canyon tour is LATER: go to Grand Canyon North Rim first, then tour Antelope Canyon, and finish with a sunset view at Horseshoe Bend.

Most of the Antelope Slot Canyon guided tours leave from Page, Arizona.

Key driving distances and driving times for Day 2:

  • ZION Canyon Visitor Center to PAGE: 2 hours 20 minutes (116 miles/187 km)
  • ZION Canyon Visitor Center to NORTH RIM: 2.75 hours (122 miles/196 km)
  • BRYCE Canyon Visitor Center to PAGE: 2 hours 40 minutes (152 miles/245 km)
  • BRYCE Canyon Visitor Center to NORTH RIM: 3 hours (157 miles/253 km)
  • PAGE to HORSESHOE BEND parking lot: 10 minutes (5 miles/8 km)
  • PAGE to NORTH RIM: 2 hours 20 minutes (123 miles/198 km)

Where you go after Day 2 of your canyon road trip will depend on where you’re … er, going. My parents and I completed the loop back to I-15 and continued on to Las Vegas.

But another great option would be to circle around the southeast end of the Grand Canyon. Head south on US-89, detour on US-64 to visit Grand Canyon Village (there’s a suspension bridge here! SO fun), and continue west on I-40/US-93 to see the South Rim.

ANTELOPE Canyon: Easy Hikes and Visitor Information

Canyon road trip takes you to Antelope Slot Canyon, Arizona
Photo credit: Jelle de Gier from Unsplash.

Antelope Canyon is certainly one of the most picturesque, most photographed slot canyons in the world. Most of the 4 million annual visitors to Antelope Canyon go to Upper Antelope Canyon and Lower Antelope Canyon. But, there are two less busy options you might prefer: the aptly-named Secret Canyon (also called Horseshoe Bend Slot Canyon) and Canyon X.

Tours of Antelope Canyon are only allowed with a Navajo guide. Given the popularity of Antelope Canyon, reserve your spot as soon as you know when you’ll be in the area (some can book up six months in advance!). Many tour operators only accept cash.

Also be aware that this area is prone to flash floods that completely fill Antelope Canyon. Watch weather reports and pay close attention to warnings from your guide.

Easy-moderate hikes in Antelope Canyon:

There are 4 pretty easy hikes to consider in Antelope Canyon. All of these hikes have the brilliant reddish orange sandstone swirls you’re looking for. Two have the iconic sunbeam photo op. Two are easy; two are a bit tougher. Two are popular and busy; two are much less so. All main tours are 1 hour inside the canyon, plus travel from the meetup point.

Here are the 4 easier hikes in Antelope Canyon:

  • UPPER Antelope Canyon (or The Crack): The deepest, most popular hike with the famous sunbeam photo op. Also the easiest, as you enter on the ground level. Upper Antelope Canyon has an “A” formation, with a wider floor to skirt around tourists. (Note: As of 2020, photography tours are no longer available in Upper Antelope Canyon.)
  • LOWER Antelope Canyon (or The Corkscrew): Possibly the most fun, with a steep 5-storey descent and the tight, windy passageways. Lower Antelope Canyon has a “V” shape, with narrow paths and unsure footing at the bottom and more sunlight near the top. It’s the second most popular.
  • SECRET Antelope Canyon (or Horseshoe Bend Slot Canyon): The most exclusive Antelope Canyon tour, with only 25 people allowed in at one time and only 2 or 3 tours per day. Children under 6 years are not allowed on this tour. Secret Canyon is the only main hike in Antelope Canyon that allows tripods.
  • Antelope Canyon X: Possibly the best value for price, second deepest, and experiencing both the “A” and “V” formations. It also offers the iconic sunbeam picture. However, there’s a fairly steep 150-foot hill at the start/end. Canyon X is the ONLY Antelope Canyon hike that allows service pets and offers a photography tour.

Key visitor information for Antelope Canyon:

  • Season: Open year-round (high-season is late May to September; especially crazy on holiday weekends)
  • Tour Hours: Typically 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cost: $40-100/adult for 1 hour in canyon (most tours are 1.5 hours with travel); $90/person for smaller group in Lower Canyon; $110/person for 3-hour photography tour in Canyon X

For more details, check out my post comparing these 4 hikes in Antelope Slot Canyon. Includes VIDEO TOURS, a TABLE comparison and 2020 tour info.

Quick Stops for Road Trip Day 2: Horseshoe Bend and Marble Canyon

The epic canyons you see on this 2-day canyon road trip take you right past two other great lookouts: Horseshoe Bend and Marble Canyon. The Colorado River winds south from Lake Powell, around Horseshoe Bend, through Marble Canyon and into the mighty Grand Canyon.

1. Horseshoe Bend

Canyon road trip takes you to Horseshoe Bend, Arizona
Photo credit: Madeline Pere from Unsplash

Horseshoe Bend is where the Colorado River winds in a very cool horseshoe shape.

Since the lookout is on the east side of the bend, you get fantastic sunset photos. But be warned: everyone who shares their experience of catching that perfect shot complains about the zillion tourists trying to do the same. If the perfect shot is important to you, consider booking with Horseshoe Bend Tours to get access to their private viewpoint.

2. Marble Canyon

Canyon road trip takes you to Marble Canyon, Arizona
View of Marble Canyon from Navajo Bridge

The Colorado River flows through Marble Canyon before reaching the Grand Canyon.

On your way to Grand Canyon North Rim, you’ll cross Marble Canyon on Navajo Bridge. There’s a bit of parking on the east side of the bridge so you can snap a few great photos. Although no marble actually exists in this canyon, the height and reflection off these sheer cliffs is still awesome.

GRAND CANYON NORTH RIM: Easy Hikes and Visitor Information

Canyon road trip takes you to Grand Canyon North Rim, Arizona
View from Bright Angel Point

The Grand Canyon North Rim is majestic and serene. It’s made up of many rugged side canyons and ridges with viewpoints that offer near-360 views that make you feel like you’re right in the canyon. The many ridges and side canyons, however, make it tough to see the Colorado River. I found it tough to grasp how deep the canyon actually is.

I won’t lie: getting to North Rim feels like quite a trek. This trek out to Grand Canyon North Rim is a big reason why it sees only 10% of all Grand Canyon visitors. 

Grand Canyon North Rim also doesn’t have a lot of facilities or extra attractions. But, it has enough to be comfortable on your canyon road trip. And this rustic, remote vibe adds to the charm of Grand Canyon North Rim for those who love camping and the smell of pine. Ah … pine. There’s nothing like it. And the view! It’s truly breathtaking … just as grand as you’d expect.

Easy hikes and other activities in Grand Canyon North Rim:

Grand Canyon North Rim is great for both hikers and non-hikers. The North Rim Scenic Drive is a short drive along the ridge that takes you along a number of beautiful viewpoints. These viewpoints are generally at the end of a ridge, with drop-offs and brilliant, near-360 views.

I recommend taking Cape Royal Road right to the end (23 miles/37 km from North Rim Visitor Center) and then backtracking to stop at viewpoints along the way. (Then they’ll all be on your right-hand side.) Note that Cape Royal Road isn’t recommended for vehicles longer than 30 feet/9 meters. End with Bright Angel Point near the visitor center and Lodge, where you can eat or spend your evening (if you’re planning to stay here).

Key viewpoints and easy hikes at Grand Canyon North Rim:

All of the viewpoints and hikes below are along Cape Royal Road, except for Bright Angel Point (which is right at the visitor center).

  • Cape Royal/Angels Window (.8 miles/1.3 km roundtrip; 1 hour): At the end of Cape Royal Road you’ll find an easy hike on a flat, paved trail with interpretive signs and two lookouts. This is a great sunrise and sunset spot, as you get panoramic views east, west and south across the canyon. Angels Window frames Unkar Delta as the Colorado turns west.
  • Walhalla Overlook: Starting your way back from Cape Royal, this will be your first stop on the right. Walhalla Overlook is a super-short walk from the parking lot for another spectacular view.
  • Roosevelt Point (.2 miles/.3 km; 20 minutes): This loop takes you through the lovely woodlands, offering more fantastic views of the canyon and benches to relax a bit.
  • Point Imperial: When you get to the “Y,” make a right and head to the end (2.6 miles/4.2 km) for the highest overlook in the park (8803 feet/2683 meters). Your view is the most eastern end of Grand Canyon, where the narrow Marble Canyon walls dramatically give way to the Grand. Picnic tables and toilets are available here.
  • Bright Angel Point (.5 miles/.8 km roundtrip; 30-45 minutes): Just past the North Rim Visitor Center and Grand Canyon Lodge is access to Bright Angel Point. This is a short but steep climb up a paved trail to a stunning view of the main Grand Canyon as it winds sourthwest, with Roaring Springs and Bright Angel canyons on either side. There are also a couple of short side trails you can explore for other fantastic views.
Mule rides at Grand Canyon North Rim!

If you have more time to spend at Grand Canyon North Rim (i.e. if you don’t plan to see Antelope Canyon), explore on the back of a mule!

Three tours are available by mule:

  • $45/person (7+ years) for a 1 hour rim tour between 8:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., or
  • $90/person (10+ years) for a 3-hour tour to either Supai Tunnel or Uncle Jimmy Owen’s Point (7:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. departures).

Key visitor information for Grand Canyon North Rim:

  • Season: Open 24 hours from May 15 to October 15;
    day use only (no lodging or restaurants) from October 15 to November 30 (Highway 67 access may close earlier due to snow)
  • Park Hours: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (but not facilities)
  • Visitor Center Hours: Daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. (May 15 to October 15) and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (October 16-31)
  • Fees (all valid for 7 days): $12/person (by motorbike) or $25/vehicle with all its passengers*
    *See website for discounts for US seniors, military families and persons with disabilities; free entrance on certain US holidays

There’s one lodge and one campground at North Rim. Reservations are strongly encouraged (especially since it’s so remote and at the end of a loooong road). See more information in the “Where to Stay” section.

Visit the national park website for more details.

WHEN to Go: 2-Day Canyon Road Trip

Canyon road trip, autumn colors in Zion National Park, Utah
Fall colors in Zion National Park

The busiest season for the Zion Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Antelope Canyon and Grand Canyon North Rim is obviously June to September when the weather is warmest.

The main timing consideration for your canyon road trip is Grand Canyon North Rim CLOSING from October 16 through May 14. Day use is an option until November 30, but without lodging or a restaurant.

We did this canyon road trip in early October, after the leaves changed colors and the tourists mostly left but before the winter weather arrived. This timing and our weather ended up being ideal, but going this late can be a bit risky because the road is a little sketchy for smaller vehicles. This is also true for early spring.

WHERE to Stay: 2-Day Canyon Road Trip

Where you choose to stay along this 2-day canyon road trip will mostly depend on the route you decide to take. Here are some great options near all four canyons.

This area is set up well for different types of travellers. From basic and pretty cool campgrounds, to budget hotels with great reviews, and even to luxury, you can find it on this epic 2-day canyon road trip. No matter where you stay, you can’t beat the surroundings.

Places to stay near ZION Canyon and BRYCE Canyon:

  • Zion Canyon Lodge and Restaurant: This is a fantastic place to stay for your first night so you can get in a morning hike on Day 1 of your road trip … or just enjoy the brilliant view of massive sandstone walls towering above you. Onsite Red Rock Grill and free parking (including RV), but don’t expect high-speed wifi inside the canyon.
  • Zion Canyon Campground & RV Resort: There are many campgrounds in the area, but this one is right on the Springdale shuttle to the Zion Visitor Center (or, really, within walking distance) and has a pool and BBQ grills.
  • Bryce Canyon Lodge and Restaurant: This lodge is a great spot to stay for your second night to see the brilliant sunset and sunrise at Bryce Canyon. It’s a short walk to the iconic Bryce Amphitheater with the stunning hoodoos and has an onsite restaurant, pizzeria and coffee shop.
  • Camping at Bryce Canyon: There are two campgrounds within the park. Both are near the Visitor Center and Bryce Amphitheater and surrounded by a thick pine forest. That pine scent makes camping awesome.
  • East Zion Resort: This gorgeous resort will up the epic factor on this incredible 2-day canyon road trip! Conveniently located 1 hour south of Bryce (so you’ve given yourself a head start on Day 2), you can choose to stay in a tiny house, tree house, yurt or glamping tent. Awesome! East Zion Resort has fantastic reviews.

Places to stay near ANTELOPE Canyon and GRAND CANYON North Rim:

  • Lake Powell Resort: There are a number of recognized hotel brands in Page with strong reviews, but this hotel is right on the lake (beach!) and isn’t a typical hotel brand. It has free parking, two pools and onsite restaurant. Wifi is shoddy, though. Reviews are hit or miss: some say the rooms are clean and nice, the food is good, and the location and view are wonderful; others don’t like the food and say the rooms need an update. You’ll pay an additional $25 to stay in the park, but renting a kayak for the morning on Lake Powell would be incredible.
  • Page Lake Powell Campground: This campground has free wifi, an indoor pool and hot tub, and covered wagon glamping! I LOVE it.
  • Amangiri: I’m mostly including this to prove that you can find a luxury resort out here. Wow. Tucked into a mountain and overlooking the desert and Grand Staircase-Escalante to the north, this spa resort is 25 minutes west of Page.
  • Grand Canyon North Rim Lodge and Restaurant: You can’t beat the sunset view from the veranda of this historical lodge, and the lodge itself is a beautiful tribute to the charm of the early 1900’s (but a lot more comfortable). Choose a cabin or the motel.*
  • North Rim Campground: Open May 15 to October 31, with tent and RV camping facilities (no hook-ups but has dump and water refill stations); coin laundry and showers.*

*Be sure to reserve in advance at Grand Canyon North Rim. It’s very remote and at the end of a very long road, so you definitely don’t want to be scrambling for a place to stay.

Road Trip Driving Times and MAPS: Suggested Route and Getting Here

Here are two maps to help you plan your 2-day canyon road trip:

  1. Recommended route for your 2-day canyon road trip
  2. How to get here from nearby major cities

1. MAP of Recommended Route for 2-Day Canyon Road Trip

This map shows the canyons, hotel options and travel routes to see Zion Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Grand Canyon North Rim and Antelope Canyon.

To use the map below: Use the buttons at the top to access map details, to share it (i.e. with yourself to modify it for your own trip) or view a larger version.

2. MAP and Driving Times: Getting Here from Nearby Major Cities

i. Getting to ZION Canyon

The approximate driving times and distances to Zion Canyon Visitor Center from (relatively) nearby major cities using the most direct routes:

  • Las Vegas: 2.75 hours (164 miles/264 km).
  • Salt Lake City: 4.5 hours (308 miles/496 km) on I-15; you can also detour on US-89 to see Bryce first, which would be a more efficient route.
  • Denver: 9.5 hours (637 miles/1025 km).
  • Phoenix: 6.5 hours (389 miles/626 km) for the easterly route via Page (near Antelope Canyon) or 7.25 hours (460 miles/740 km) for the westerly route via Las Vegas.
  • Albuquerque: 8.5 hours (505 miles/813 km or 508 miles/818 km depending on route) via Page.

ii. Getting to Page (near ANTELOPE Canyon)

Here are the approximate driving distances to Page (where many of the Antelope Canyon tours start) from (relatively) nearby major cities using the most direct routes:

  • Las Vegas: 4 hours 20 minutes (276 miles/444 km); takes you just south of Zion.
  • Salt Lake City: 6 hours (386 miles/622 km); takes you past Bryce.
  • Denver: 10 hours (626 miles/1008 km), if you go the fastest route.
  • Phoenix: 4.25 hours (273 miles/439 km).
  • Albuquerque: 5.25 hours (392 miles/631 km).

As you can see, your 2-day canyon road trip itinerary will depend on which direction you come from. If you’re coming from Salt Lake City, you might decide to see Bryce Canyon first. If you’re coming from Phoenix or Albuquerque, you might decide to see the Grand Canyon North Rim and Antelope Canyon first.

To use the map below: Use the buttons at the top to access map details, to share it (i.e. with yourself to modify it for your own trip) or view a larger version.

Whew! These are two intense days. If you like driving, you’ll love this road trip because the scenery between spots is beautiful. And if you don’t like driving, well, you’ll also love it because you’ll see four amazing, very unique canyons!

Wanna do this trip, but not the driving? Check out Intrepid Travel’s small group tours, like this one from Vegas to LA. I LOVE this company.

For more details, check out my post comparing these 4 hikes in Antelope Slot Canyon – includes VIDEO TOURS, a TABLE comparison and 2020 tour info.

Looking for something a little more relaxed? Check out these other ideas:

2-day canyon road trip: Zion Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Grand Canyon North Rim, and Antelope Canyon

Remember to SHARE this post with your TRAVEL COMPANIONS!


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