Arizona

ARIZONA USA

Arizona was magical! We arrived soon after Halloween in 2020 and stayed until week before Christmas in 2020. We stayed in Sedona, Tolleson and Goldenshores/Topock area

THINGS TO SEE AND DO IN ARIZONA

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Hoover Dam is a major sightseeing destination located on the border between Nevada and Arizona and the 2 nd tallest dam in the U.S
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Grand Canyon National Park is home to the Grand Canyon (1 of the 7 wonders of the world) and you can also check out the Colorado river.
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Sedona Vortex Area is an area that offers gorgeous views of the red rock and also known as a site with energy centers.
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London bridge in Lake Havasu City is a bridge that was brought to Lake Havasu city from London City by someone named Robert McCulloch. They used a boat to get it from London to Long Beach, California and then they put it on a truck and brought it to Havasu. How cool!
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Oatman is a fun stop along historic Route 66, it used to be a Gold mining spot as Gold was mined in the Black Mountains but now it is a living ghost town as there are more Burros than people. Oatman is located on historic Route 66 and you can take a tour of this iconic ghost town

TRIP HIGHLIGHT

Our Grand Canyon trip kicked off with a 2hr drive from Topock (where we were staying at an Airbnb rental) to Hoover dam. Our goal was to visit the dam, and then drive to the glass skywalk before heading to the Grand Canyon area where we planned to stay overnight at the Grand Canyon inn and spend the day at the national park then head back home.

DAY 1

We left Topock early in the morning and parked on the Arizona side once we arrived at Hoover dam. Due to
COVID pandemic, the visitor center was closed and there were no guided tours but we enjoyed walking from one side of the dam to the other side soaking in the breath taking views of the dam and Colorado river.
After our self-guided walking tour, we had some French fries at the café and re-evaluated our plans to go to the glass skywalk; We realized we were short on time as it would take 2hrs to drive to the skywalk, and another 1hr to get through parking and registration etc and we still wanted to make the drive to the national park which was another 4hr drive. We wanted a good night’s rest for the hike at the Grand Canyon National park, therefore, we skipped the Skywalk and hit the road for the overnight stay at the Grand Canyon inn. We enjoyed our stay at this basic inn, it was close enough to the national park-south rim entrance, they have great parking options, friendly staff, and a restaurant.

DAY 2

We arrived at the Grand Canyon National Park shortly after 9:30 MST, the place was already busy at this time of the morning. We hiked the South Rim trail starting at Mather point which offers the most scenic views of this natural wonder. Overall, we had an amazing time, spectacular views each with its own uniqueness, nice long walk on a trail that we share with others who were there to hike and soak in the amazing views of the Canyon. After our amazing hike, we spent about 30minutes looking for our car!!!Given that we had arrived at the park in the morning, it was less busy compared to when we left (shortly after noon). There are many parking lots and they were each parked with people, cars, buses, RVs so it took us a while to retrace our steps and determine the parking lot in which we had parked our vehicle. We were thankful enough when we found it, we were just happy it was not towed as we thought perhaps, we may have parked in a non-designated spot and got towed!!! Anyway, once you park your vehicle, b mindful of the name of the parking area or any visual markers that you can easily identify and remember.
From the park, we drove to another open park and had a mini picnic. We had packed a cooler of food that is easy to cook (white basmati rice and seasoned chicken breast, some lemons, sugar and water to make some
lemonade). Our kids enjoyed playing while dad and mom fired up the camping stove and prepared a quick meal. After eating, we went to the Raptor Ranch and learned a little bit about the Flintstones, there were lots of cool things for kids to play on, we saw some cool birds and all for $5 woohoo!
For a one-of-a-kind experience, Raptor ranch was an incredible surprise visit in the middle of the desert.
We hit the road to return to Topock shortly after 5MST, we drove on portions of the famous Route 66 on the way to Topock; In Arizona, Route 66 starts in Lupton passes through Flagstaff, Williams (home to the grand canyon railway), Oatman (formerly a gold-mining town before it became a ghost town and now it’s a tourist spot) and Topock

TIPS

Kids
It’s going to be busy, so keep a close eye on your kids and never let them wander off on their own. Do not let them explore beyond the fenced area, EVER!! Your kids will get hungry so bring snacks and water so you can save up on your money as food is expensive at the park and you have to be prepared to tolerate long lines. If possible, ditch the stroller and encourage them to walk or be prepared to carry them.

Services
Self-sufficiency while at the park allows you to maximize your time at the park, bring enough food and water for the day as services are limited.

Pictures/Videos
Take as much as you can but be mindful of where, there are a lot of markings/fencing to ensure you are within the appropriate boundary, don’t risk dropping your phone (or yourself) for that picture perfect selfie. The Grand Canyon National park has many great areas where you can take pictures and videos and maintain safety. Peak Hours

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