Visiting The Grand Canyon With Kids: Tips For Parents

Seeing the Grand Canyon really puts the beauty of nature into perspective and allows you to enjoy one of the most brilliant natural wonders of the world. Visiting the Grand Canyon with your kids allows them to enjoy this beauty, which they will remember for the rest of their life. But traveling with little ones can be tough. How do you keep everyone's needs met, ensure they're entertained, and make sure you still have time to enjoy the Grand Canyon yourself? Follow these tips.

1. Don't let the kids wander. 

The developed South Rim area of the Grand Canyon is well-traveled and well-marked to avoid accidents. However, kids do not always mind fences and stay back when signs tell them to do so. Even adults have fallen into the Grand Canyon when acting foolishly, so do not assume your child -- even if they are a teen -- will have enough sense to play it safe. Keep all of your kids under close supervision all of the time while near the canyon's edge. If you have several children, consider asking another adult friend to accompany you on your Grand Canyon trip so that you have extra adult eyes on the kids.

2. Take a tour.

You want to ensure the trip to the Grand Canyon is an educational experience for your kids, but trying to explain everything about the canyon while also supervising the kids can be overwhelming. Consider taking a tour with an official tour group. This way, the kids will be safe in an enclosed space -- usually a bus -- and a tour guide will tell them all they need to know about the canyon. You can relax and listen, too, which makes the experience more enjoyable on your end.

Do make sure you find a tour group that is kid-friendly. Check the age restrictions before booking. Some offer family packages, so you can pay one price and have the whole family join you.

3. Bring water bottles along.

Make sure each kid has their own water bottle -- preferably one that secures to their wrist or body in some way. This way, you won't have to rush to find them a drink every time they are thirsty, which can get expensive in the park. You can also be ensured that they have water to drink and don't suffer from dehydration, which can be a real risk in the Arizona heat! The Grand Canyon National Park has water bottle refill stations, so keeping those bottles full of clean water should not be a problem.

4. When you see a bathroom, use it.

Bathrooms are scarce in some areas of the South Rim. When you do come across the bathroom, make sure everyone in your crew uses it. This will keep you from wasting all of your time looking for a bathroom, only to have another kid then need a bathroom 20 minutes later. Make sure the kids know that bathrooms are scarce so they go when needed.

5. Choose your hikes carefully.

If you have older kids, you may want to hike when you're at the Grand Canyon, but keep in mind that not every trail is suited for youngsters. Your best bet is probably the Rim Trail. It offers some great views, is not too treacherous, and has fencing along most, though not all, of the trail. Kids ages 10 and older should have no trouble hiking this trail.

To learn more about visiting the Grand Canyon with kids, reach out to local tour groups. They can tell you which Grand Canyon tours are best to book.