National Parks Near Phoenix

Brilliant sunshine and a favorable climate are two of the main reasons Phoenix’s population has grown nearly 4% per year for the past 40 years. Luckily, with national park destinations only hours away, there is also ample opportunity for people to soak up the sun outside of the city limits. 

Photo By: John Mulloy

Photo By: John Mulloy

Photo By: John Mulloy

Photo By: John Gillanders

Photo By: Jamie Abart

Photo By: Kelly Smith Trimble

Photo By: John Mulloy

Photo By: Whitney North

Photo By: Whitney North

Grand Canyon National Park

A new option for Grand Canyon visitors with adequate cell phone service is listening to the free audio tours offered through the National Park Service. On this web application, park rangers give two-minute narrations on topics including the park'€™s unique geology and Native American history.

Grand View

Seen from even its best viewpoints, the unexpected grandeur of the Grand Canyon is so impressive in scale that viewers can see only a fraction of the gorge's 227 miles from any one viewpoint on the plateau

Canyonlands National Park

The Island In The Sky, the Needles, the Maze, and the combined Green and Colorado Rivers make up the four districts of Canyonlands National Park, which author Edward Abbey described as "€œthe most weird, wonderful, magical place on earth."

Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

Glen Canyon NRA is a recreation and conservation area that encompasses 1.25 million acres and offers limitless water recreation and camping opportunities around Lake Powell and lower Cataract Canyon.

Joshua Tree National Park

The junction between the rugged Colorado Desert and the 3,000 feet higher, wetter and more vegetated Mojave Desert at Joshua Tree National Park makes for a stark and striking contrast.

Cholla Gardens

Though from far away the gardens of cholla (pronounce choya) cacti in Joshua Tree appear soft and fuzzy, these distinctive succulents are actually covered by barbed spines that have a reputation for easily detaching and sticking to skin, fur and clothing.

Bryce Canyon National Park

Eroded and weathered by water, the orange, red and white spires (called hoodoos) of Bryce Canyon will give the most spectacular views during sunrise and sunset.

Zion National Park

Zion National Park is about a six-hour drive from Phoenix, but visitors can make it seven if they choose to take the longer route through Las Vegas to roll some dice.


Zion is one of the premier national parks for canyoneering. Not for the claustrophobic or faint of heart, this outdoor activity combines hiking, navigation, swimming, caving and sometimes rappelling.

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