Sunset over Grand Canyon, Arizona
Sunset over Grand Canyon, Arizona
Monument Valley Views
Monument Valley Views
Moab & The Canyonlands, Utah
Moab & The Canyonlands, Utah
Monument Valley & Capitol Reef National Park
Monument Valley & Capitol Reef National Park
The Virgin River in Zion National Park
The Virgin River in Zion National Park

Self-Drive Grand Canyon, Monument Valley & the Mighty Five of Utah

10 nights from €1,699 per person Including Flights

Overview

This self-drive holiday loops you through the most spectacular national parks in western USA. Start big with the first stop at the famous Grand Canyon – truly a magnificent sight to begin any holiday! Then it’s onto another world famous landscape – Monument Valley with its distinctive sandstone towers located in the ancient Navajo Territory and backdrop to many Westerns. Don’t worry, you haven’t peaked too early because then you have the “Mighty Five” national parks of Utah – each with its own amazing geological wonders. Arches with its 2,000 natural sandstone arches and Canyonlands – a dramatic desert landscape carved by the Colorado River and filled with sculpted pinnacles and buttes. Zion is Utah’s first national park and here the Virgin River runs through the lush valley surrounded by soaring canyon walls. Capitol Reef is just 20 miles wide but runs 100 miles along the “Waterpocket Fold” – an incredible S-shaped warp in the earth’s crust. Finally Bryce is filled with astonishing spire-shaped rock formations.

This is a tailormade itinerary, so we will adapt this to fit your timings, perhaps adding more nights into places you’d like to explore.

Highlights

  • Marvel at the spectacular sight of the Grand Canyon with the mighty Colorado River thousands of feet below
  • Discover the dramatic landscape of Monument Valley – with its iconic sandstone pillars forming the backdrop of many Western movies
  • Hike through the amazing rock formations of Canyonlands National Park and the beautiful natural stone arches in Arches National Park
  • Explore the lush valleys of Zion National Park and the fascinating “hoodoos”of Bryce Canyon – myriad of spire-shaped rocks


Itinerary Overview

Fly to Las Vegas 2 nights – Grand Canyon – Williams 1 night – Monument Valley 1 night – Moab 3 nights – Canyonlands National Park – Arches National Park – Capitol Reef National Park – Bryce Canyon 2 nights – Zion National Park – Springdale 1 night – Fly home from Las Vegas
 

Our holidays include
  • Flights & taxes
  • Accommodation
  • Checked baggage
  • CAR licensed & bonded
  • In resort assistance & 24 hour contact centre
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  • No amendment fees
  • Low deposits
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Days 1 and 2

Fly to Las Vegas

Arrive into Las Vegas and transfer independently to your hotel. We’ve included two nights in Vegas on this itinerary to have some fun at the start of your holiday. But if you’d rather head straight out into the spectacular national parks, then we can simply book you a hotel near the airport so that you head off straightaway on Day 2.

Overnight: Luxor Resort & Casino or similar

Day 3

Las Vegas – Grand Canyon (286 miles)

You’re likely to be up early due to the time difference, so take advantage of this and head west to the magnificent Grand Canyon before the crowds. Decide how you want to see the Grand Canyon – you can hike along the rim to a variety of vantage points within the national park or perhaps book tickets for the seemingly-precarious glass Skywalk. Your overnight location will be Williams.

Overnight: Grand Canyon Railway Hotel, Williams or similar

Day 4

Williams – Monument Valley (206 miles)

It’s about a three hour drive north to the Utah border and the dramatic landscape of Monument Valley where you will find the iconic sandstone pillars which provided the backdrop to many Westerns. We’ve included one night here, but if time permits then it would be worth adding an additional night as there are some fun activities to book in the area such as a 4x4 tour of Monument Valley.

Overnight: Gouldings Lodge Monument Valley

Day 5

Monument Valley – Natural Bridges National Monument - Moab (186 miles)

Head north for 60 miles to the Natural Bridges National Monument. On arrival it’s best to visit the visitor centre for a map and information and then drive the loop with stops at the natural bridges – at each of these you can pick up hiking trails of varying length and difficulty. Horse Collar Ruin is also worth a visit, which is a well preserved ancestral Puebloan site that was inhabited over 700 years ago. Continue onto Moab – gateway to the Canyonlands and Arches National Parks – which will be your base for the next three nights.

Overnight: Hotel Moab Downtown or similar

Days 6 and 7

Canyonlands and Arches National Parks

You have two full days to explore this gorgeous region. The national parks are fantastic for hiking and have well-marked trails which vary in difficulty – there are lovely short strolls to various beauty spots and vantage points ranging through to medium rated walks for an hour or two ranging up to full-on day-long hikes. You can find details either at the national park visitor centres or on their website. In Moab there are also lots of places for you to hire bikes, book a kayaking tour or brave a white-water rafting trip.

Day 8

Moab – Capitol Reef National Pak – Bryce (266 miles)

Back onto the road and a two hour drive to your next National Park – Capitol Reef. This park was created along the 100 mile “Waterpocket Fold” – also known as a geologic monocline or a wrinkle on the earth. Here you will find wonderful trails to discover the natural stone domes, bridges, canyons and cliffs. It’s then a two and a half hour drive to your home for the next two nights – Bryce.

Overnight: Best Western Plus Ruby's Inn, Bryce or similar

Day 9

Bryce Canyon National Park

A full day to explore the beauty and splendour of Bryce Canyon - characterised by its crimson coloured “hoodoos” – spire-shaped rock formations. Depending on whether you’re an early bird or a night owl, you can hike to Sunrise Point or Sunset Point linked by the Rim Trail.

Day 10

Bryce – Zion National Park (87 miles)

It’s the final full day of your holiday and your final national park – Zion. You can drive to the Visitor Centre then pick up the shuttle to take you into the interior this lush park. The shuttle loop takes three hours giving you amazing views, but you’ll also want to get off at various points to pick up some of the beautiful trails and see the park at close quarters. At the end of the day make the short drive into the town of Springdale for your overnight stay.

Overnight: La Quinta by Wyndham at Zion Park/Springdale or similar

Day 11

Springdale – Las Vegas International Airport (165 miles) – fly home

It will take you two to three hours to drive back to Las Vegas airport so depending on the time of your flight home, you might want to stop off in the Valley of Fire State Park with its petrified wood and sandstone formations. Then drop off your hire car and fly home.

 

  • International flights
  • 10 nights hotel accommodation on a room only basis as described above or similar
  • Car hire with fully comprehensive insurance


What’s Not Included
Entrance to national parks and attractions

Jenn O'Neill
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