For outdoor enthusiasts and national park visitors, Flastaff is an prime location for travels across Northern Arizona. With its close proximity to the Grand Canyon along with Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument, it’s ideal for travelers who want to day trip to national park sites then enjoy city conveniences. With an large collection of outdoor activities, travelers can enjoy their time outside throughout the year. As the first official Dark Sky city, the night sky is also a draw. Here’s the top things to do in Flagstaff Arizona.
Top Things to do in Flagstaff Arizona
Grand Canyon National Park
As a top destination in the U.S., the Grand Canyon is a sight that most yearn to see. The South Rim can feel like Grand Central with visitors from all corners of the globe, though there’s plenty of room to explore. As a year-round destination, its sparkles in the summer and it glitters in the winter with a fall color season as well. Find lodging, dining and activities on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.
For a difference point-of-view, head to the seaonal North Rim for a greener and cooler version of the Grand Canyon. Find lodging, hiking, dining and mule rides on this side of the park, open from May until October.
Grand Canyon Railroad
For those who want to make a grand entrance to the Grand Canyon, take the scenic train. Departing from Williams, Arizona, west of Flagstaff, guests can board the train for a a day trip or an extended trip at the South Rim.
Most trains depart at 9:45 a.m. and return at 5:45 p.m. with three hours at the Grand Canyon. Though for passengers who want to stay longer, they can book a room on the South Rim.
Located at 280 N. Grand Canyon Blvd. in Williams. Fares start at $16 each way and riders must have reservations.
A mathematician opened the observatory in 1894 for solar system exploration. In 1930, the Lowell Observatory discovered Pluto.
The Lowell Observatory is a National Historic Landmark. It’s home to the 24-inch (61-cm) Clark Refracting Telescope and the 13-inch (33-cm) Pluto Discovery Telescope.
Visitors get access to the facility for entire day and can attend talks and tours, like the Lowell Tour. Another popular activity is stargazing from the Giovale Open Deck Observatory (weather permitting).
Located at 1400 W. Mars Hill Rd. Open Wednesday to Monday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Adult admission is $25 and kids (5 to 17) enter for $16 from Wednesday to Monday. Tuesday’s admission is $18 for adults and $12 for kids.
Arizona Snowbowl Ski Resort
On the western slope of Mt. Humphreys, find an all-season mountain resort on the tallest point in Arizona. Arizona Snowbowl offers 777 skiable acres with 55 runs from green to black. Find six aerial lifts including a 6-person high speed lift along with two surface lifts.
Ski season runs from late November until the end of April. The scenic chair lift transports hikers and mountain bikers from the summer through October for fall color.
Located at 9300 North Snowbowl Rd. Open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Lift tickets required and find lessons and equipment rental onsite.
Walnut Canyon National Monument
See how people lived in the area from AD 600 to 1400. Explore the cliff dwellings along Island Trail to see 25 cliff dwellings of the Sinagua people. They farmed corn, squash and beans below the cliff.
The area became a national monument in 1915. The Civilian Conservation Corps stabilized the site in the 1930s as a part of President Roosevelt’s Works Progress program that put young men to work in parks across the U.S.
Located on Interstate 40 at Exit 204, Flagstaff. Open daily from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Adult admission (15+) is $15 and kids (15 and under) are free.
Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument
The area around Flagstaff is volcanic, including Mt. Humphreys. See a cinder cone along with lava fields at Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument. Several of the trails remain closed along with the visitor center, though the Sunset Crater Loop Road is open.
Located at 6082 Sunset Crater Rd., Flagstaff. A 7-day private vehicle pass is $25 for neighboring Sunset Crater and Wapatki national monuments.
Wapatki National Monument
Explore the ancient pueblos of the Wupatki that built multi-level structures 900 years ago, including the 104-room Wupatki Pueblo. Find several short hiking trails to explore partially preserved pueblos.
Located at 25137 N. Wupatki Ln., Flagstaff. Open sunrise to sunset. A 7-day private vehicle pass is $25 for neighboring Sunset Crater and Wapatki national monuments.
Explore a 200-acre property to see the native trees and plants of northern Arizona. With 750 different plant species, learn how plants adapt to the Colorado Plateau.
Located at 4001 S. Woody Mountain Rd. Open from mid-April until November 1 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Adult admission (18+) is $10 and kids (4 to 17) are $7. Dog-friendly.
Located south of Grand Canyon National Park, this 160-acre drive through wildlife park. As visitors drive through the ponderosa pine forest, they can see several types of bears along with badgers, bison, bighorn sheep and more.
Located at 1500 E. Route 66 in Williams. Open daily year-round from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. with the last car admitted at 4 p.m. Admission starts at $20 and depends on day and age.
Meteor Crater Natural Landmark
See where a meteor crashed into the earth 50,000 years ago. Considered to be one of the best preserved meteor impact craters in the world. It’s 3,900 feet (1,200 m) across and 560 feet (170 m) deep and includes an interpretive center and rim tours.
Located on Interstate 40 at Exit 233, Winslow. Open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Adult admission (12+) is $22 and kids (6 to 12) are $13.
Take a drive down fabled Route 66, one of the original routes across the U.S. before the interstate system. For the best driving experience, nearby Williams, Arizona offers an excellent section with lots of shopping and dining.