Is It Better to Drive From Las Vegas or Phoenix To Grand Canyon?

Last Update on May 30, 2022 by Matthew Meier
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Visiting the Grand Canyon is an absolute must for anyone who will be touring the southwest. But what’s the best way to get there? Is it a difficult drive from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon,  but is it any easier to take a trip from Phoenix?

Short Answer: It is shorter to drive to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon from Phoenix.

Long Answer: Las Vegas is a bit further, but offers travelers more options for visiting the Grand Canyon and other nearby destinations. It is better to Drive from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon for longer trips.

With all the sights to see in Vegas, many people would choose this option, and it’s only two-and-a-half hours from Las Vegas to the West Rim of the canyon, while it’s four and a half hours from Las Vegas to the South Rim.  For most travelers, the South Rim

Road Trips In The Southwest are the Best

Driving From Phoenix to the Grand Canyon

The drive from Phoenix to the Grand Canyon can be done in less than 4 hours and clocks in at 229 miles. There is really only one section of the Grand Canyon that is accessible from Phoenix, and that is the South Rim. Luckily, the South Rim is the most spectacular and most popular section of the Grand Canyon.

On the drive up to the Grand Canyon from Phoenix, there aren't a lot of things to see, but you will have the chance to take a detour through Sedona and see the fun local towns of Flagstaff and Williams.

Related Reading: The 5 Best Restaurants in Williams Arizona

In the end, Phoenix is a great place to start your trip to the Grand Canyon from. If you plan is to visit the Grand Canyon, and only the Grand Canyon, I would say Phoenix is the best major city to depart from. If you plan on seeing more of the amazing attractions in the area, Las Vegas may be a better choice.

Driving from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon

When driving to the Grand Canyon from Las Vegas, you have many options. The West Rim of the Grand Canyon is a little more than 2 hours away or 127 miles, the South Rim is less than 4.5 hours or 276 miles away, and the North Rim also about 4.5 hours or 267 miles away from Sin City.

The North Rim Of The Grand Canyon

Not only does Las Vegas offer access to all 3 rims, but it also makes the perfect starting and ending point for a road trip to the Grand Canyon and the surrounding parks. You can do a huge loop, spending anywhere from 2 days to 2 weeks exploring world-famous locations like the Hoover Dam, Horseshoe Bend, Antelope Canyon, Monument Valley, Arches National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, Zion National Park, and much much more.

In fact, this is exactly what we do on our longer Grand Canyon tours. We start from Las Vegas, and drive a big loop around the Grand Canyon, hitting many of the parks listed above.

Backpacks At Antelope Canyon
If you are visiting the Grand Canyon South or North, it is only 2 more hours to Antelope Canyon. It's not to be missed!

What About Other Cities?

While there are other airports in the area, including St. George, Flagstaff, and Page, flights to these locations are usually infrequent and expensive. Flying to a major city like Phoenix or Las Vegas will give you the best flight, car, and hotel options.

Bottom Line

While it may be a bit shorter to get to the South Rim from Phoenix, travelers looking to spend more than a quick day there should strongly consider Las Vegas as their starting point for their Grand Canyon road trip as it offers more options to see the Grand Canyon and surrounding parks. If a day trip to Grand Canyon National Park is what you are after, departing from Phoenix makes the most sense.

FAQs about Is It Better to Drive From Las Vegas or Phoenix To Grand Canyon?

  1. Is it better to fly into Las Vegas or Phoenix to go to the Grand Canyon?

    As we mentioned above, for a quick day trip to Grand Canyon National Park, it is better to fly into Phoenix. For longer trips to the Grand Canyon and beyond, or to visit the West or North Rim, you should fly into Las Vegas.

  2. What's closer to the Grand Canyon Phoenix or Las Vegas?

    Las Vegas is closer to the Grand Canyon at only 128 miles to the West Rim vs 222 miles from Phoenix to its closest rim, the South Rim.

  3. Is Grand Canyon closer to Arizona or Las Vegas?

    Easy answer 🙂 The Grand Canyon is inside Arizona (all 277 miles of it), so it is technically closer.

  4. Is it hard to drive from Phoenix to Grand Canyon?

    It isn't hard to drive from Phoenix to the Grand Canyon. It can be done in less than 4 hours, and most of the driving is done on large interstate highways.

  5. How long does it take to drive from Phoenix to Grand Canyon?

    It takes 3 hours 27 minutes to drive from Phoenix to the Grand Canyon.

  6. Is Phoenix or Las Vegas closer to South Rim Grand Canyon?

    Phoenix is 53 miles closer than Las Vegas to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

  7. What major city is closest to Grand Canyon?

    Phoenix is the closest major city to the Grand Canyon National Park, Las Vegas is the closest major city to the West Rim of the Grand Canyon.

  8. What state is the best place to see the Grand Canyon?

    Considering Arizona is named the Grand Canyon State, we will go with Arizona as the best state to see the Grand Canyon.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Matthew Meier

World Traveler. Mandarin Speaker. Founder of MaxTour.
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