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Thinking of taking the boys, ages 9,7 & 7 to see the Grand Canyon over spring break in April.
Havenâ€™t been there in 45 years so would appreciate advice on where to stay and what to do/see.
Also thinking of taking a side trip to either Zion in Utah or Mesa Verde in Colorado. Thoughts?
Mesa Verde allows us to stop at four corners
We did a tent camping family vacation to Mesa Verde, Four Corners, Grand Canyon 20 years ago. Mesa Verde is/was very rustic. The cliff dwellings are pretty interesting with the tours explaining how they lived. You will see more stars at night then you probably ever have, mule deer wandering around close by. Four Corners, meh. One of the most memorable things I've ever done was hike the Bright Angel trail down to the river and back (7 hours). Too far and hot (upper 90's on top, over 110 on the bottom) for our kids but they hiked down a mile or so. One night a pack of coyotes must have been after something, howling up a storm, waking us all up, scaring the shit out of our daughter. Great trip.
Don't piss down my back and tell me it's raining
We took a trip to the GC last year for spring break. My kiddos are 13,11 and 7. We flew in to Vegas and drove to the South Rim. Stayed the first night at the Bright Angel lodge. We had a permit to spend a night at Bright Angel campground, so my wife and I and our oldest 2 backpacked in and spent the 2nd night there. Our youngest stayed on the south rim with grandma, and they took the bus to all the visitors centers. We hiked out the next day and drove up to Utah. We spent a day at Zion and another day at Bryce Canyon. We flew home from SLC. The Grand Canyon was the highlight of the trip. My boys are just dying to go back. Camping at the bottom was an amazing experience! I highly recommend it,if you can get a permit.
North Rim won't be open by April so that settles that.
South Rim....take your pick of hotels within the park assuming you are not planning to camp or backpack. You can rent bikes there and ride out to Hermit's Rest as far as you can get the kids to go (tell them there is ice cream at Hermit's Rest if they make it, and you can always take the bus back). It can be a little bit of a challenge up the first hill. You can hike down Bright Angel as far as you want to go. You can drive around to the other viewpoints...Desert Watchtower is great as long as it's on the way to where you are heading anyway.
Four Corners isn't worth the stop even if you are going by it.
Zion is more impressive than Mesa Verde, but also a lot more crowded. Mesa Verde is pretty cool from an educational standpoint...it's a nice park but doesn't compare to Zion for impressive landscapes and great hiking opportunities.
Consider visiting Page and Lake Powell. Antelope Canyon is a truly unique experience.....well there are many slot canyons actually but Antelope Canyon is the most common. You can also see Horseshoe Bend, or take a boat to Rainbow Bridge, etc. It ties together with the Grand Canyon for a "Colorado River" theme.
Or consider Escalante National Monument. We took the kids (younger than that) through Peek-a-boo slot canyon and it was awesome. Very remote = very few people....although Peek-a-boo/Spooky are very popular.
Or Moab is in the general area.