One of the many features of Sedona Arizona is its close proximity to the Grand Canyon. In fact, Oak Creek Canyon, just to the north of Sedona is a part of the same geological wonder, that the Grand Canyon is. A local saying that God may have created the Grand Canyon but he lives in Sedona may not be far from the truth.
When visiting Sedona, AZ one of the many things to do is to take a trip to the Grand Canyon. These majestic rock formations are a mere two hours north of Sedona, along a stretch of highway through Oak Creek Canyon that has been called one of the most beautiful drives in North America. And what a destination point.
The Grand Canyon rightly claims it place amongst the seven natural wonders of the world for there is nothing else that is comparable. Back in 1901, the government established the Grand Canyon National Park, an area of over a million acres designated to the protection and management of this great monument. This includes the 277 miles of Colorado River rushing through the bottom of the canyon, still slowly eroding the sandstone layers as it has for millions of years. On average the Canyon measures approximately 10 miles across but it can be as far as 18 miles across and about a mile deep although that too varies depending on where you are. (photo courtesy of stephmbs/shutterstock.com)
There are several different points to view the canyon, each offering a different perspective of the amazing power of water and the geology of the ages.
The South Rim is the most popular and accessible destination and offers accommodation and amenities in the Grand Canyon Village as well as the history of the area. The Grand Canyon Railway also arrives and departs from this area and is an excellent way to enter the park and avoid the confusion and congestion in the perpetually busy parking lots.
The North Rim is very different in that the view is not so much that of looking down into the canyon as it is that of looking across the vastness of the region. The three main points of interest from this view are Point Imperial, Cape Royal and Point Sublime. Excellent views of the volcanic action responsible for shaping parts of this area are available.
The Inner Canyon is for those adventurous spirits who choose to either undertake the minimum two day hiking journey to the canyon floor, or perhaps ride a mule down or even ride the white water of the Colorado river on one of the many rafting tours available. Plenty of people seek camping permits for the Grand Canyon backcountry but the number issued each year is finite, so plan ahead.
Whatever your choice, a visit to the Grand Canyon is guaranteed to enhance your stay in Sedona and the Northern Arizona area. It is truly one of the most magnificent combinations of power and beauty to be seen.