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Old 02-28-2011, 01:06 PM   #1
lukenick1
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Disneyland>Vegas>Grand Canyon>Phoenix

Flying into LAX for the start of our 2 weeks vacation. Planning to rent a car and hit Vegas, Hoover Dam, Grand Canyon, Phoenix and whatever else interests us on the way. Two families travelling with 5 kids total ranging in age from 8-16. Any tips on where to stay, what to do, routes to take etc?
Thanks

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Old 02-28-2011, 02:15 PM   #2
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Vegas has a lot of kids things, or at least that kids will enjoy. Aim for a hotel with a fun pool preferably center strip. I would spend two days, maybe 3 if you want a lot of pool time, in the city. Probably pick up the cars the second or third day and go to Freemont Street that evening.

See Hoover dam on the way out of LV going to the GC. Plan on 2-3 hours there. The Hard Hat tour is great, much better than the basic tour.

You can see some of the GC that night. Overall you can visit the south rim in a full day, but if you want to do some hikes into the canyon add a day for each hiking day.

From there it's about a solid days drive to Anaheim, but you might want to stop at a ghost town somewhere.

For DL 3-5 days. Stay on Harbor so you can walk to the parks.

Out of 14 days you will have some left over, so perhaps spend some time in Hollywood, Universal, Knotts, the beaches, Seaworld, SD zoo or Safari Park.

So for
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Old 02-28-2011, 02:35 PM   #3
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Vegas has a lot of kids things, or at least that kids will enjoy. Aim for a hotel with a fun pool preferably center strip. I would spend two days, maybe 3 if you want a lot of pool time, in the city. Probably pick up the cars the second or third day and go to Freemont Street that evening.

See Hoover dam on the way out of LV going to the GC. Plan on 2-3 hours there. The Hard Hat tour is great, much better than the basic tour.

You can see some of the GC that night. Overall you can visit the south rim in a full day, but if you want to do some hikes into the canyon add a day for each hiking day.

From there it's about a solid days drive to Anaheim, but you might want to stop at a ghost town somewhere.


Wow thank for all the help. We will probably only have about 12 days total for our trip. So we will have to time it perfectly. We figured we would only spend one night at GC anyway. One day at Disneyland as we have been to Disney World a bunch of times so been there done that. I am excited for our trip. I think due to cost of airfare we will start in LA then to Vegas then to Hoover Dam and GC. Then fly home out of Phoenix.
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Old 02-28-2011, 03:04 PM   #4
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You didn't say when you were flying out west. Even though you've been to WDW, DL is really a much different experience, and one frankly, that you really can't do in one day. I would really try to squeeze another day in DL to your itinerary.

On the way back to Phoenix from the Grand Canyon, it will be worth your while to make a side trip through Oak Creek Canyon and into Sedona. The vistas are amazingly beautiful. Are you going to have any time in Phoenix? Again, depending on what time of year you are here, there are a few things to do that your kids might enjoy.
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Old 02-28-2011, 03:42 PM   #5
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We will be travelling the first 2 weeks of July.....still looking at the cheapest route for airfare. Yikes its expensive! Maybe we should skip CA and just focus on AZ and LV???
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Old 02-28-2011, 03:56 PM   #6
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Do you have your accommodations at the canyon yet? Lodges within the park usually book out about a year in advance. There are places in Tusyan, just outside the park.

July is going to be the hottest time of year here in Phoenix. Northern Arizona should be nice.
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Old 02-28-2011, 03:59 PM   #7
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We have no plane tickets or hotels booked yet. We are in the process of shopping around and figuring it all out.
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Old 02-28-2011, 05:31 PM   #8
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We have no plane tickets or hotels booked yet. We are in the process of shopping around and figuring it all out.
First to reiterate DLR 3-5 days. You really haven't seen that and done it. It's very different.

If you are price sensitve try to make Anahiem and Vegas hotel night on Sunday through Thursday. In both location they are much higher on Friday and Saturday night.

It's really good advice above to book well ahead for the GC. As back up you might consider getting a room in Williams or Flagstaff. Not near the GC at all but you will go through them either coming to or going from the GC.
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Old 03-01-2011, 07:50 AM   #9
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I would stay in Flagstaff rather than at the canyon. Spend the day at the south rim then head to Flagstaff for the evening. Numerous hotel choices for any budget.

If time permits stop at the Arizona Snowbowl ski area and ride the chairlift to the top. Great views from up there. They run the chair all summer and into October.

Disneyland takes 3 days to really see it all. It is possible to go on all major rides and see all shows in 2 days but you would feel rushed. Disneyland has 80% of the rides and attractions of Disneyworlds 4 parks packed into two parks.

Are you flying into LAX and out of PHX? That would help time wise but I would think costs more for airfare and car rental.
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Old 03-01-2011, 04:40 PM   #10
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Ok so budget isn't looking too good for hitting Disneyland on this trip We are now thinking to fly into Vegas, then out of Phoenix. So this vacation will only consist of a few days in Vegas, Grand Canyon then the rest of the trip in AZ. I am open to suggestions for fun in AZ? Thinking the Sedona area. Are we crazy to be in AZ in July?
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Old 03-01-2011, 05:21 PM   #11
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How many days did you want to spend in Phoenix? I would recommend spending most of your time in Arizona in the Northern part. You could visit Meteor Crater. Spend some time in Flagstaff, they have Lowell Observatory and the sky ride at Snow Bowl. There are also some interesting national monuments very near to Flagstaff. And, of course, Sedona will be beautiful. There is an Out of Africa Wild Animal Park near Sedona you could check out.

In Phoenix, it will be hot. You can look at the Arizona Grand Hotel. It boasts a water park of sorts to cool off. You could take in a Diamondback's game. There is a very cool Science Center in downtown Phoenix as well. The zoo is really great, but you want to get there early in the morning before it gets too hot during the day.
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Old 03-01-2011, 09:18 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by lukenick1 View Post
Ok so budget isn't looking too good for hitting Disneyland on this trip We are now thinking to fly into Vegas, then out of Phoenix. So this vacation will only consist of a few days in Vegas, Grand Canyon then the rest of the trip in AZ. I am open to suggestions for fun in AZ? Thinking the Sedona area. Are we crazy to be in AZ in July?

Vegas and Phoenix will be blazing hot in July. Grand Canyon, Williams, Flagstaff will be great weather.

In Williams visit Bear Country. Its a drive through park with lots of bears and other animals to see. Theres a visitor center with exhibits of bear and wolf cubs. Just east of Williams is the Deer petting zoo. Great for kids and adults as dozens of deer come up that you can feed. Also near Williams are several mountain lakes for trout fishing. For fun rent a cabin at the Circle Pines KOA and enjoy campfires, hay rides etc.

In Flagstaff the horses will be racing over July 4th weekend at an old fashioned country mountain track in the pines.

Drive Route 66 from Kingman to Ash Fork skipping the boredom of I-40 and go back in history for a bit.

Visit Sunset Crater and Wapatki Indian Ruins. At the crater there is a very easy 1 mile hike along the lava fields.

Drive south from Flagstaff through Oak Creek Canyon. Stop at the vista just before the highway drops into the canyon. Indians often sell their arts and crafts there and the views over Oak Creeks rim are beautiful. Continue on the highway to Sedona and on to I-17 and Phoenix.

Montezuma's Well and nearby Montezumas Castle are more Indian Ruins worth the stop.
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Old 03-03-2011, 04:26 PM   #13
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any good ghost town reccomendations?
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Old 03-04-2011, 01:21 PM   #15
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any good ghost town reccomendations?
Most of the ghost towns in Arizona are in the southern part. As noted Jerome may be of interest. Its no longer a ghost town as its been revived by the artists and musicians that have moved in. But there are still numerous old buildings, many abandoned long ago that are still standing.
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