View of the Grand Canyon from the south rim.

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7-Day Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, Sedona Itinerary

If you’re considering a 7-day trip to Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, and Sedona, you’re in for an unforgettable adventure! To make the most of your tour of the American Southwest, here’s a detailed guide that covers the best attractions, activities, and experiences in these three destinations. Here is the best 7-day Itinerary from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon and then on to Sedona.

Las Vegas Skyline at night.
Photo by Julian Paefgen from Unsplash

The Perfect 7-Day Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, Sedona Itinerary

Day 1: Las Vegas

Make sure you spend your first day exploring the famous Las Vegas Strip. There are many iconic casinos, high-end shopping malls, and world-class restaurants. Don’t miss the chance to catch a show in the evening. Some of the top attractions you should visit include:

  • Bellagio Fountains — Every late afternoon and evening, the Bellagio Fountains put on a free water and light show. 
  • High Roller Observation Wheel— The wheel soars 550 feet above the Vegas strip and offers thrilling views. Check out the Happy Half-Hour in the evening with an open bar in the cabin.
  • Neon Museum— Neon is what everyone thinks of when they think of the strip. Here, you can find an entire museum dedicated to the old signs that have lit up the Vegas night over the years.
  • Valley of Fire State Park — This is an excellent choice for exploring Las Vegas’s outdoors. The park is known for its red rock formations and petroglyphs. You can hike, camp, and enjoy scenic drives here.

You can also try your luck at the numerous casinos and indulge in some fine dining and shopping. Try not to party too much; it’s an early start tomorrow for the Grand Canyon.

The best places to stay in Las Vegas can be divided into two groups: hotels with and without casinos. In the first group, two top places include the Bellagio, which sits right in the heart of the stip and is perfect for those looking to be in the center of the action. If you are looking for a hotel without a casino, look into the Four Seasons Las Vegas and the Waldorf Astoria; both are luxury options with lobbies that don’t have a casino.

Grand Canyon sunset from the south rim
Photo by Jennifer Rogalla from Unsplash

Day 2: Grand Canyon

On our first travel day on our 7-day itinerary from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon and Sedona, it is a 5-hour drive to the south rim of the Grand Canyon. Once you arrive, make your first stop at one of the many overlooks and marvel at one of the world’s most breathtaking natural wonders. But there is much more to do here than stand on the rim and take pictures. 

You can hike down into the canyon, take a scenic helicopter ride, or explore the rim on foot. You can also visit the Grand Canyon Skywalk, a glass bridge that extends over the canyon, providing a thrilling view of the canyon below. But be warned, although Grand Canyon West is the closest point to Las Vegas, a stop at the Skywalk is out of the way for our planned itinerary. Plus, the views are frankly better at the south rim of the Grand Canyon.

Where To Stay At The Grand Canyon

Your first big decision is where to stay at the Grand Canyon. The closest and most fantastic location is right in the Park itself. Here, there are two main options: the Bright Angel Lodge, which is a bit lower in cost, and the El Tovar, the bigger high-end lodge in the Park.

Bright Angel has rooms with either private bathrooms or shared baths. This choice will be the more economical option in the Park. El Tovar will have larger rooms with private baths and more amenities. But you need to book either option well in advance, and by well in advance, I mean around a year ahead of time.

The best options outside the Park are in Tusayan or Grand Canyon Junction. Both have several chain hotels and some more unique options. Check out Under Canvas Grand Canyon for a glamping adventure. The Squire Resort at the Grand Canyon is a more traditional hotel option worth considering.

Day 3: Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon National Park is huge, thousands of acres, and you can visit four rims of the canyon. But on our journey, we are sticking to the south rim. It offers 32 miles of access to the rim with lots of hiking, biking, and photo-taking opportunities. It also provides the most amenities for visitors. 

There are three sections to the south rim: the Grand Canyon Village, Hermit Road, and Desert View Drive. Start your adventure with a tour of a few of the most famous viewpoints. They include:

  • Mather Point – This is, without a doubt, the most popular viewpoint at the Grand Canyon. You will get decent views and huge crowds. 
  • Yavapai Point – A little less crowded with panoramic views.
  • Ooh Aah Point – This overlook is located on the South Kaibab Trail and is one of the best viewpoints.

All these can be reached using the park shuttle; take the Kaibab Rim Route (orange line). Using the shuttles is the easiest way to get around the more crowded areas of the south rim. It can also be easily combined with walking the rim.

Top Hikes In The Grand Canyon

Rim Trail: This is the most straightforward and most accessible trail at the Grand Canyon. It runs 13 miles along the South Rim and offers stunning canyon views. You can hike as much or as little of the trail as you like, and it’s suitable for all fitness levels.

Hermit Road Trail: This trail is a 7.8-mile roundtrip hike that follows the canyon’s rim. It offers some of the best canyon views, including the famous Hopi Point. The trail is mostly flat and easy, making it an excellent option for families with children.

Bright Angel Trail: This trail is considered one of the most popular hiking trails in the Park, allowing you to go below the canyon’s rim. Most people hike a short portion of the trail, often turning around at the 1.5-mile and 3-mile marker. The entire length of the trail is 9.5 miles one way.

Trail sign for the Bright Angel trail at the Grand Canyon
Take a Helicopter Ride

Taking a Helicopter ride over the canyon is an incredible way to see this massive place. Getting a helicopter tour from the south rim is easy and will cost around $300+. The tour lasts just under an hour and offers excellent views of this unique natural wonder. 

Watch The Sunset Over The Canyon

One of the most memorable things to do on a Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, Sedona road trip is catch every sunset you can. Starting here on the rim of the Grand Canyon, you won’t find anything more spectacular. The top sunset viewpoints on the South Rim are Mather Point, Hopi Point, and Yavapai Point. If you want to rise early the following day, catch the sunrise from the rim, it’s a great way to start your day.

Day 4: Sedona via Flagstaff

Our next stop on our 7-day itinerary from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon and Sedona is a stop in Flagstaff. This mountain town is an otherworldly location from what you think of in Arizona. Amidst a ponderosa pine forest, this quirky town offers much to those who want to stop and explore. 

Want to explore the outdoors here? Check out Walnut Canyon National Monument, a one-mile trail descending 185 feet down steps along the trail, where you can slip into 25 cliff dwelling rooms that the Native people once inhabited.

Walking around Flagstaff is like visiting a gallery with over forty public art pieces. The historic district features over 20 colorful murals and sculptures. It also offers a chance to explore shops with Native American crafts and great gift ideas. If you are looking for other artsy towns to explore in the US, check out my post, A Guide to 9 Artsy Towns For Art Lovers In America.

After you finish in Flagstaff, continue your journey to Sedona. You will arrive just before sunset and head to Airport Mesa, the perfect place to catch another stunning sunset.

Where To Stay In Sedona

When you reach Sedona, here are a few options for places to stay. My favorites are Amara Resort & Spa, located right in the heart of “downtown” Sedona. So walking to restaurants and shopping is very convenient. The hotel’s setting along the creek is still peaceful, with amazing views.  

My other recommendation is the Enchantment Resort, situated beautifully in Boyton Canyon. You will find nearby trails leading into the canyon and a very peaceful setting here. And the Mii amo is a world-class destination spa located steps from Enchantment Resort. It is one of my favorite spa experiences I have ever had! 

If you want a true luxury experience, check out the new Ambiente, Sedona. It is a fantastic hotel that has raised the bar in this town.

The town of Sedona set against the red rocks during sunset
Photo by Jared Johnson from Unsplash

Day 5: Sedona

Now that you are ready to experience your first full day in Sedona, you can hike in the nearby Coconino National Forest, take a jeep tour to explore the rugged terrain, or relax and enjoy the stunning views. Visit popular attractions like Cathedral Rock, Bell Rock, and Slide Rock State Park.

My suggested day would start with one of these fantastic hikes. Some short hikes are relatively easy, and a few that will take a better part of the morning are a real workout.

Top Hikes In Sedona

Cathedral Rock Loop: You will find a short hike of the 1.2-mile loop that offers awe-inspiring views and provides an excellent introduction to Red Rock hiking. Arriving early at Cathedral Rock trailhead is recommended, as finding a parking spot can be challenging.

Boyton Canyon: A beautiful hiking trail located in Sedona, Arizona, the Boyton Canyon trail is a moderate hike with a roundtrip distance of approximately 6.4 miles. The trail offers stunning views of the surrounding red rocks and is an excellent place to experience the natural beauty of Sedona. 

The trailhead is located at the Boynton Canyon parking lot. The hike can take anywhere from 2-4 hours, depending on your pace and time spent taking in the scenery. 

Bear Mountain: If you’re looking for a challenging hiking experience in Sedona, “Bear Mountain” is the perfect trail. This trail is longer and more strenuous than most other trails in the area, but it offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes. The trail is approximately 5 miles long and has an elevation gain of about 2,000 feet. The hike can take 3 to 5 hours, depending on your pace and fitness level. Just bring plenty of water and wear appropriate hiking gear, as the trail can be rocky and steep in some areas.

Tlaquepaque cobblestone courtyard with stores and restaurant
Tlaquepaque Photo by Taven Diorio from Unsplash
Other Sedona Activities

During the afternoon, take it easy. Try one of the following activities:

Explore Tlaquepaque Village and start by grabbing some lunch. Try El Rincon Restaurante Mexicano, it has great food. Or you could head to The Oak Creek Brewery if something other than Mexican appeals to you. Then, explore the beautiful art galleries and shops offering a wide range of unique and handmade items. Additionally, there are often live music performances and other events in the village, so check the calendar before you go. 

If shopping isn’t your thing, a Pink Jeep tour would be an excellent way to spend the afternoon. You will see these iconic pink jeeps all over Sedona. I suggest booking the Broken Arrow tour or the Scenic Rim tour; both provide a thrilling ride and take you to areas of Sedona you can’t reach by car.

If you’re searching for a way to spend a relaxing afternoon, consider taking a scenic drive through the stunning landscapes of Sedona and Oak Creek. As you wind through the picturesque roads, you’ll be treated to breathtaking views of towering red rock formations, lush forests, and sparkling streams. The two best routes to explore are the Red Rock Scenic Byway, which is 7.5 miles and has been designated both a National Scenic Byway and an All-American Road, and the Oak Creek Canyon Scenic Road (SR 89A) north of Sedona, which is one of the most beautiful drives in Arizona.

Devil's Bridge in Sedona Arizona
Photo by Justin Wolff from Unsplash

A late afternoon hike is a great way to finish your Sedona day. We saved the Devil’s Bridge hike for the end of the day for two reasons. One because the crowds should be less. Devil’s Bridge is the most popular hike in Sedona and can be very crowded during the day. The second reason is the late-day sun is the perfect lighting on the Red Rock Bridge and makes for a great time to take photos.

Day 6: Return to Las Vegas via Hoover Dam and Lake Mead

Today starts with a 4-hour drive to Hoover Dam. The dam is a fantastic feat of engineering, constructed in the 1930s. It created Lake Mead, a vast reservoir home to many recreational options.

Take a tour of the power plant and dam. It’s a great way to learn more about Hoover Dam. Tours run daily from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. The tour lasts about an hour. You can get more information about tours at the visitor center, but booking your tickets in advance is recommended.

Then, you can spend the afternoon exploring Lake Mead, a prime spot for kayaking and other water activities. Check out one of the area’s many kayak and stand-up paddle rental companies. You can also visit one of the many beaches along the lake and take a dip in the water. Boulder Beach is one of the closest options to the dam on your way to Las Vegas.

Aerial view of Hoover Dam
Photo by Christian Lendl from Unsplash

Day 7: Las Vegas Our Final Day of the 7-day Itinerary to the Grand Canyon and Sedona

Your last day can be spent exploring Las Vegas before you return home or continue your journey. You will find so many things to do in Las Vegas your day will be full. 

If you want to continue with a tour of the Southwest and Las Vegas isn’t your final stop, head north to Utah. Check out my post 5-Day Itinerary of Utah National Parks From Las Vegas. It’s a short drive from Las Vegas to Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon National Park. Other extensions in the area include visiting Monument Valley and Antelope Canyon. Many locations in the Southwest are on my USA bucket list post; if you want more destinations in the United States, check it out here.

The 7-day itinerary from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon and Sedona is a perfect way to explore the Southwest’s natural beauty and cultural diversity. From hiking to helicopter tours, there are plenty of activities and sights to see in each location. So, pack your bags and get ready to embark on another adventure.

The Best Time To Visit Las Vegas, Grand Canyon and Sedona

The best time to visit Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, and Sedona depends on what you want to do and see. Generally, the best time to visit these destinations is during the spring and fall seasons when the temperatures are moderate and the crowds are smaller. However, if you want to enjoy the hot summer sun and take advantage of the many activities available, summer might be the best time. On the other hand, winter is great to explore if you want to avoid the crowds. But remember, it does snow in northern Arizona, and some things may be closed or have limited hours during the winter months.

The Best Way To Make This Journey

Visiting any of these locations will require a rental car. Las Vegas is the closest city to pick up your vehicle for this amazing Arizona road trip. If driving isn’t possible, there are tours you can book leaving from Las Vegas that will cover much of what is outlined in this post. Explore the options below. 

Two lane road through Arizona red rocks
Drive Through Red Rocks Photo by Frankie Lopez from Unsplash
Below are links and resources to help you plan The perfect trip

Travel Resources

  • HOTELS
    Booking.com and Expedia.com are great resources for accommodations around the world. Book almost any hotel directly from these links.
  • TOURS
    The best places to book tours and activities are Viator or Get Your Guide . From great food tours to guided hiking adventures to local walking tours, you will find great experiences to add to your travels here.
  • FOOD EXPERIENCES
    EatWith is a great resource for authentic culinary experiences with passionate locals worldwide. Connecting travelers with hosts in over 130 countries, providing unique, intimate, and immersive experiences in private homes and exclusive venues.
  • TRAINS
    Trainline is Europe’s leading train and coach app. They work with over 210 rail and coach companies to help their customers travel to thousands of destinations across 45 countries. 

The links above contain product affiliate links. We may receive a commission at no additional cost to you if you make a purchase after clicking on one of these links. But your support of Fork & Wander is greatly appreciated!

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