A road trip from Las Vegas to Phoenix has many opportunities for those looking to see some truly picturesque vistas. While you can get to the Valley of the Sun in under five hours, you’ll be well-rewarded if you took a route that included a few national and state parks. Your Las Vegas to Phoenix road trip could include stops at the Grand Canyon and Slide Rock State Park along the way. To do this, you start by going southeast on U.S. 93 until you reach I-40 in Kingman, Arizona; Interstate 40 will then take you to the Grand Canyon via State Route 64. After visiting the Grand Canyon, head down to Flagstaff, which will enable you to get to I-17; this will take you right into Phoenix.
There are a lot of national parks in this southwestern region of the U.S. Below are a couple of parks that are easy to visit during this road trip from Las Vegas to Phoenix.
Zion National Park
Zion National Park is home to a 15-mile long canyon that produces lots of unique ecosystems. While this park is located in Southern Utah, making it three hours north of Las Vegas, it's a great stop for an extended road trip. There are miles of trails to explore here, but the longest trail, which is named the Narrows, follows the Virgin River. Flash floods occasionally happen, so be careful as you hike.
Grand Canyon National Park
Grand Canyon National Park is one of the iconic must-see stops on your road trip itinerary from Las Vegas to Phoenix. The park is massive, with elevations as high as 8,000 feet. The Grand Canyon covers more than 1.2 million acres in Northern Arizona. Temperatures at the top of the canyon are fairly cool when compared to other parts of the area. In the park, you can go rafting down the Colorado River, take a multiple-day hiking adventure down into the canyon, or simply enjoy the amazing views from the top.
Don't forget about the wonderful state parks that you'll be near during your Las Vegas to Phoenix RV road trip. These amazing protected areas are generally less crowded than national parks.
Valley of Fire State Park
Located an hour northeast of Las Vegas, Valley of Fire State Park makes an excellent first stop for your road trip. The park is 46,000 acres in size, and it’s the oldest state park in Nevada. There are amazing sandstone formations throughout the area that came into existence about 150 million years ago. Wildlife is plentiful in the park, and you may even get the opportunity to see a desert tortoise.
Lake Havasu State Park
Along the Arizona/Nevada state line, you will find Lake Havasu State Park, which covers a nice chunk of shoreline. As you might imagine, the main attraction here is the lake, which is fed by the Colorado River. There are launches for motorized boats, and you'll find many places to rent kayaks, paddleboards, and other watercraft. If you prefer to stay on land, you can relax at the beach or go hiking along a lakeside trail. The Mohave Sunset Trail traverses 1.75 miles of lowland desert along the shoreline.
Slide Rock State Park
Once you get closer to central Arizona, make sure that you look for Slide Rock State Park. You'll find it about 7 miles north of Sedona. This is 43 acres of land that is filled with apple orchards, trails, and a nice creek to cool off. There is even a natural rock slide that you can enjoy; the slide is 80 feet with a gentle 7% slope.
The Hoover Dam, which you'll more or less pass over on your journey, is located in the Black Canyon on the Nevada/Arizona border. It impounds Lake Mead, which is one of the largest man-made lakes in the world. The dam has a hydroelectric plant at the base to create electric power for major cities in Arizona, Nevada, and California. Luckily for tourists, the Hoover Dam is very visitor-friendly. There are daily tours and a large gift shop.
Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
The Vermilion Cliffs National Monument is a 280,000-acre piece of land that is in Northern Arizona. The national monument is three times the size of Las Vegas, so it is an incredible stop to make. It's a more convenient stop if you're also heading to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. At Vermilion Cliffs, there are miles and miles of unspoiled wilderness to hike, take photos, and explore the wildlife. There are also small springs at the foot of the cliffs that are worth checking out.
Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument
If you're going to Phoenix by way of Flagstaff, be sure to stop at Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument. This is a volcano that erupted back in 1085, but the results of this eruption can be seen today. It’s a must-see point of interest that's about 20 miles north of Flagstaff. The red rim of the volcano is very picturesque, especially as the sun sets over the land. You can also hike through the ponderosa pines and see some of the wildlife that lives in the park.
Boulder City, Nevada
Boulder City has a unique history—it came into being as a place to rest for the first workers on the Hoover Dam. As a result, Boulder City had beginnings that established it as a “company town.” Today, the town is one of the few in Nevada where gambling is prohibited within the city limits. Boulder City has an expansive park and recreation department. Throughout the city limits, you’ll find golf courses, a city pool, and a full-fledged racquetball complex.
If you’re looking to relax at a campground in the area, consider Boulder Beach Campground. It’s on the Lake Mead shore, and it has plenty to do for families. This includes swimming, water sports, and fishing. The campground also has an on-premises dump station for you to use on your way to Phoenix.
Many travelers visit Flagstaff because of its proximity to the Walnut Canyon National Monument, but there are plenty of other reasons to come to this Arizona town. Flagstaff is the home to the Museum of Northern Arizona. By visiting this museum, you'll better understand the Native American history of the area. There are also several options for guided recreation throughout the city.
Flagstaff is a great city for RVing, too. Most campgrounds in the area have full hookups, dump stations, and entire sections dedicated to all RV types. The best Flagstaff campgrounds include options like Fort Tuthill County Park and Bonito Campground. Both of these have great amenities, and Bonito even allows pets.
Beautiful red rocks are part of what makes Sedona a must-see for anyone making a road trip from Las Vegas to Phoenix. Consider the Chapel of the Holy Cross; this scenic chapel is carved into the red rocks of the area and is quite the experience for visitors. The city also has its share of exploration opportunities. In fact, there are more than 400 miles of hiking and biking trails to consider while you’re in town. The town also has a vivid arts and culture scene, so take some time to get to know the local galleries and shops while you’re making a stop on your road trip.
The best Sedona campgrounds bring relaxed living to RV owners and renters alike, and there are several with extra amenities like hot tubs and pools. Nearby towns like Cornville and Camp Verde also have several options for just about any RVer.