Arizona National Parks pack in visitors from every corner of the U.S. and from other countries as well. We know this because when my family went to the Grand Canyon there were people from many other countries. This helped make the trip more enjoyable.
The Grand Canyon and Painted Desert are among our favorite vacations. Each time you go the scenery looks different. We love visiting there.
There are other Arizona National Parks as well. A guide of top national parks is listed below. There are a few things that you should know when visiting.
First, Arizona National Parks do participate in the National Park Passes programs. This means that if you have an America the Beautiful pass ($80), Senior pass ($10) or an Access Pass (Free) or Volunteer Pass (Free) you can enjoy free admission for a full year.
Another thing that you need to know is that you are visiting the desert. With any trip of this nature you must plan accordingly. The park rangers at the Grand Canyon suggested carrying water with you and sipping it throughout your walk or hike. Powerade and Gatorade were also recommended.
The parks are remote and cell phone coverage may be nonexistent. Keep your car in top running order. Obey all signs at all times. Other tips are listed on the website for each park. Click on the name of the park to go to their website.
Here is a list of the top Arizona National Parks.
Grand Canyon National Park
Grand Canyon, Arizona
General Phone: (928) 638-7888
Backcountry Permits: (928) 638-7875
Annually, 5 million people visit this Arizona National Park. The views are spectacular.
There are 2 rims; the North Rim and the South Rim. Both are different and provide different services. Visitors are advised to research their visit and plan accordingly.
Cabins, hiking, picnic areas, visitor centers, a small store, bookstore and ranger led programs are available. Your cell phone may not get a signal. People with lung and heart problems are advised that activity at this altitude can be difficult. A complimentary shuttle runs during the summer months. Pets allowed if on a leash. Take desert precautions. Contact the park for details.
Petrified Forest National Park
Petrified Forest, Arizona 86028
Phone: (928) 524-6228
Visitors can enjoy seeing petrified wood, the striped badlands of Arizona, archaeological sites, historic structures and more. Pets are allowed if on a leash. This is a desert so precautions should be taken for both people and animals.
My family thought the scenery was just as striking here as it was at the Grand Canyon. If you are driving through Arizona you won’t want to miss this National Park.
Casa Grande Ruins National Monument
1100 W. Ruins Dr.
Coolidge, AZ 85228
Phone: (520) 723-3172
This is one of the largest prehistoric structures on the continent. Experts debate as to what it was used for. In about 1450 the place was abandoned along with whoever built the structure. Throughout the centuries numerous archaeologists have visited the site and render their opinions. There is still much to be learned. Visitors can enjoy seeing parts of the ruins, interpretive programs, walks, a visitor center and exhibits.
Saguaro National Park
3693 South Old Spanish Trail
Tucson, AZ 85730-5601
Rincon Mountain District Phone: (520) 733-5153
Tuscon Mountain District Phone: (520) 733-5158
This Arizona National Park is named for the famous cactus that dots much of the southwest. The park is divided in half by the city of Tuscon, Arizona. Visitors can enjoy wildlife watching, hikes, biking, guided interpretive programs and more.
There are other Arizona National Parks and Monuments. Many are in remote areas where getting there is difficult. Click here for a map of all National Parks in Arizona.
Click this link for more articles by this author about parks in other states.
National Park Service
The American Southwest