Scottsdale To Las Vegas Road Trip: The 10 Best Stops

road trip: 10 best stops

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Embark on an unforgettable Scottsdale to Las Vegas road trip, where the stunning desert landscapes and vibrant city vibes await you. This iconic journey offers a perfect blend of natural beauty and urban excitement, making it a must-do adventure for any travel enthusiast.

The route from Scottsdale to Las Vegas offers a variety of top stops for road trippers to explore along the way. Start your journey by heading north on I-17, where you can make a pit stop at the scenic Red Rock State Park near Sedona. Continue on to Flagstaff, a charming mountain town known for its outdoor recreation opportunities and historic Route 66 vibes. As you approach the Nevada border, be sure to visit the Hoover Dam for a fascinating glimpse into engineering marvels.

With a distance of approximately 300 miles, the Scottsdale to Las Vegas road trip can be completed in around 4-5 hours, depending on traffic conditions. It’s recommended to check for any road closures or construction updates before hitting the road to ensure a smooth travel experience. While traffic can be heavier during peak travel times, the scenic views and exciting destinations along the way make the journey well worth it.

Whether you’re seeking outdoor adventures, cultural experiences, or simply a fun-filled road trip with friends, the Scottsdale to Las Vegas route offers something for everyone. So pack your bags, hit the road, and get ready for an unforgettable adventure through the heart of the Southwest.

Sedona, Arizona

Essential Information

– Route Options: Take the scenic route via AZ-179 N for breathtaking views.
– Opening Hours: Most attractions are open daily from 9 am to 5 pm.
– Fee: Some hiking trails are free, while others may require a Red Rock Pass.
– Visit Duration: Plan for at least a half-day to explore the main attractions.
– Ideal For: Nature lovers, outdoor enthusiasts, and photography enthusiasts.

Why is it a must stop

Sedona, Arizona, is a must-stop on your road trip for its stunning red rock formations that offer a unique backdrop for outdoor adventures. Start your day with a hike at Bell Rock, known for its energy vortex and panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. For a more leisurely experience, take a scenic drive along Oak Creek Canyon, where you can stop at various viewpoints to capture the beauty of the red rocks.

Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Chapel of the Holy Cross, a striking architectural marvel built into the red rocks, offering a peaceful sanctuary with sweeping views. If you’re feeling adventurous, embark on a jeep tour to explore off-the-beaten-path locations and learn about the area’s rich history and geology.

After a day of exploration, unwind with a visit to Tlaquepaque Arts & Crafts Village, where you can browse unique shops, art galleries, and enjoy a meal at one of the charming restaurants. End your day by watching the sunset at Airport Mesa, a popular spot for its panoramic views of the red rock formations bathed in golden light.

Sedona, Arizona, promises a memorable stop on your road trip with its natural beauty, outdoor activities, and spiritual charm that will leave you in awe of the wonders of the American Southwest.

Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

Essential Information

– Route Options: Take US-93 N from Scottsdale to I-40 W, then head north on AZ-64 to the park.
– Opening Hours: 24/7, year-round.
– Fee: $35 per vehicle for a 7-day pass.
– Visit Duration: Recommended at least half a day.
– Ideal for: Nature lovers, outdoor enthusiasts, families.

Why is it a must stop

Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona is a must-stop on your road trip from Scottsdale to Las Vegas. The sheer magnitude and breathtaking beauty of the Grand Canyon make it a natural wonder that captivates visitors from around the world. As you stand at the rim, the vast expanse of the canyon stretches out before you, showcasing millions of years of geological history.

One of the most popular activities at the Grand Canyon is hiking along the rim or descending into the canyon itself. Trails like the South Kaibab Trail and Bright Angel Trail offer stunning views and a chance to experience the canyon up close. For those seeking a more leisurely experience, the park also offers scenic drives along Desert View Drive and Hermit Road, with numerous viewpoints to stop and admire the canyon.

Photography enthusiasts will find endless opportunities to capture the ever-changing colors and shadows that dance across the canyon walls, especially during sunrise and sunset. Don’t forget to visit the Grand Canyon Skywalk for a unique perspective and thrilling experience of walking on a glass bridge suspended over the canyon.

Whether you’re a nature lover, adventure seeker, or simply in awe of the wonders of the natural world, the Grand Canyon National Park is a destination that will leave you with memories to last a lifetime. So, make sure to include this iconic stop on your road trip itinerary for an unforgettable experience.

Route 66 in Kingman, Arizona

Essential Information

  • Route Options: Historic Route 66
  • Fee: Free
  • Visit Duration: 1-2 hours
  • Ideal For: Road trip enthusiasts, history buffs

Why is it a must stop

Route 66 in Kingman, Arizona is a must-stop on your road trip for its iconic Americana charm and rich history. As you cruise along this historic highway, make sure to visit the Route 66 Museum to delve into the fascinating past of this legendary route. Take a stroll down the vibrant streets lined with retro diners, antique shops, and quirky roadside attractions that offer a glimpse into the golden era of American road travel.

Don’t miss the chance to snap photos with the famous Route 66 sign and vintage cars that dot the landscape, creating a nostalgic atmosphere that transports you back in time. Grab a classic milkshake at a 1950s-style diner or savor a hearty meal at a traditional roadside cafe, immersing yourself in the flavors of the American West.

For a dose of adrenaline, hop on a guided tour of the nearby desert terrain in a rugged off-road vehicle, exploring the rugged landscapes and hidden gems that lie off the beaten path. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a photography buff, or simply a traveler seeking an authentic taste of Americana, Route 66 in Kingman, Arizona promises a memorable stop on your road trip adventure.

Hoover Dam, Nevada

Essential Information

– Route Options: From Scottsdale to Las Vegas
– Opening Hours: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
– Fee: $10 per vehicle
– Visit Duration: 1-2 hours
– Ideal for: Road trippers and history enthusiasts

Why is it a must stop

Hoover Dam, Nevada, is a must-stop on your road trip from Scottsdale to Las Vegas. This iconic engineering marvel offers a unique blend of history, stunning views, and recreational activities. Start your visit by marveling at the massive concrete structure that holds back the mighty Colorado River. Take a guided tour to learn about the dam’s construction and its role in providing power and water to the region.

For the adventurous road tripper, Hoover Dam offers opportunities for outdoor exploration. Walk along the top of the dam for panoramic views of Lake Mead and the surrounding desert landscape. Capture memorable photos at the famous Hoover Dam sign or enjoy a leisurely picnic overlooking the reservoir.

If you’re looking for a bit of adrenaline, consider taking a helicopter tour for a bird’s eye view of the dam and its surroundings. For those interested in history, the visitor center showcases exhibits on the dam’s construction and its impact on the region.

Before you continue your journey to Las Vegas, don’t forget to stop by the gift shop to pick up souvenirs and snacks for the road. Hoover Dam, Nevada, is a must-see attraction that offers a mix of educational insights and scenic beauty, making it a memorable stop on your road trip itinerary.

Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, Nevada

Essential Information

– Route Options: Take the Scenic Loop Drive for the best views.
– Opening Hours: Open daily from 6 AM to 8 PM.
– Fee: $15 per vehicle for a day pass.
– Visit Duration: Plan for at least half a day.
– Ideal For: Nature lovers, hikers, and photographers.

Why is it a must stop

Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area is a must-stop on your road trip for its stunning natural beauty and outdoor activities. Hiking enthusiasts will be thrilled with the numerous trails offering breathtaking views of the red sandstone cliffs and unique rock formations. Don’t miss the popular Calico Tanks Trail, known for its scenic vistas and hidden water pools.

For those seeking adventure, rock climbing opportunities abound in Red Rock Canyon, catering to both beginners and experienced climbers. The area’s diverse wildlife and plant species make it a paradise for nature photographers, with opportunities to capture the beauty of the desert landscape.

If you’re looking for a more leisurely experience, the Scenic Loop Drive provides a relaxing way to soak in the majestic scenery from the comfort of your car. Keep an eye out for wildlife such as desert tortoises and bighorn sheep along the way.

Whether you’re an outdoor enthusiast or simply appreciate the wonders of nature, Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area offers a memorable stop on your road trip from Scottsdale to Las Vegas.

Valley of Fire State Park, Nevada

Essential Information

– Route Options: Take I-15 N from Scottsdale to Las Vegas, then exit onto Valley of Fire Hwy.
– Opening Hours: 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM daily
– Fee: $10 per vehicle
– Visit Duration: 2-4 hours
– Ideal for: Nature lovers, photographers, road trippers

Why is it a must stop

When embarking on a road trip from Scottsdale to Las Vegas, a stop at Valley of Fire State Park is a must for nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers alike. The park’s unique red sandstone formations, ancient petroglyphs, and stunning desert landscapes offer a captivating experience that is sure to leave a lasting impression.

One of the main attractions at Valley of Fire is the Fire Wave, a mesmerizing striped sandstone formation that is a favorite among photographers. The vibrant colors and intricate patterns of the rock formations provide endless opportunities for capturing stunning images.

For those looking to stretch their legs and explore the park on foot, the White Domes Trail offers a scenic hike through a canyon with towering cliffs and unique rock formations. The trail provides a glimpse into the park’s diverse geology and offers panoramic views of the surrounding desert landscape.

Visitors can also marvel at the ancient petroglyphs etched into the rocks by the Native American tribes that once inhabited the area. These intricate carvings offer a glimpse into the rich history and cultural significance of the region.

Whether you’re seeking a peaceful retreat in nature, a photography adventure, or a chance to explore ancient history, Valley of Fire State Park is a must-stop destination on your road trip from Scottsdale to Las Vegas.

Zion National Park, Utah

Essential Information

– Route Options: From Scottsdale to Las Vegas
– Opening Hours: 24/7
– Fee: $35 per vehicle
– Visit Duration: 1-2 days
– Ideal for: Nature lovers, hikers, photographers

Why is it a must stop

Zion National Park in Utah is a must-stop on your road trip from Scottsdale to Las Vegas for its breathtaking landscapes and outdoor activities. The park offers a variety of attractions that cater to all types of travelers. Hiking enthusiasts will be thrilled to explore the famous Angel’s Landing trail, known for its stunning views and challenging terrain. For a more leisurely experience, take a scenic drive through the park and marvel at the towering red rock formations.

Photographers will find endless opportunities to capture the beauty of Zion, from the iconic Zion Canyon to the picturesque Emerald Pools. Wildlife enthusiasts can keep an eye out for bighorn sheep, deer, and a variety of bird species that call the park home. Don’t miss the chance to experience the thrill of canyoneering in Zion, a unique adventure that combines hiking, climbing, and rappelling through narrow slot canyons.

Whether you’re seeking adventure or simply want to soak in the natural beauty, Zion National Park is a destination that promises unforgettable experiences for road trippers passing through Utah.

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah

Essential Information

– Route Options: From Scottsdale, take I-17 N to I-40 W, then US-89 N to Bryce Canyon.
– Opening Hours: Open year-round, 24 hours a day.
– Fee: $35 per vehicle for a 7-day pass.
– Visit Duration: 1-2 days.
– Ideal For: Nature lovers, hikers, photographers.

Why is it a must stop

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah is a must-stop on your road trip for its stunning natural beauty and unique rock formations. The park is famous for its hoodoos, tall spire-shaped rock formations that create a mesmerizing landscape. Visitors can enjoy scenic drives along the park’s rim, offering breathtaking views of the amphitheaters below. For the more adventurous, hiking trails like the Navajo Loop and Queen’s Garden Trail provide an up-close experience with the hoodoos. Don’t miss the opportunity to stargaze at night, as Bryce Canyon is designated as an International Dark Sky Park, offering unparalleled views of the night sky. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a photographer, or simply looking for a memorable stop on your road trip, Bryce Canyon National Park is sure to leave you in awe.

Antelope Canyon, Arizona

Essential Information

– Route Options: From Scottsdale to Antelope Canyon, take US-93 N and US-89 N. From Antelope Canyon to Las Vegas, take US-89 S and I-15 N.
– Opening Hours: Varies by tour operator, typically from early morning to late afternoon.
– Fee: Entrance fee for guided tours, prices vary.
– Visit Duration: 1-2 hours.
– Ideal For: Photography enthusiasts, nature lovers, road trippers.

Why is it a must stop

Antelope Canyon in Arizona is a must-stop on your road trip for its mesmerizing natural beauty and unique rock formations. The main attraction here is the stunning play of light and shadows created by the sunbeams filtering through the narrow sandstone walls. This creates a photographer’s paradise, offering endless opportunities for capturing breathtaking shots.

Guided tours are available to explore the canyon, allowing you to witness the magical interplay of light and rock formations up close. The knowledgeable guides will lead you through the narrow passageways, pointing out interesting features and providing insights into the geological history of the canyon.

For adventure seekers, Antelope Canyon offers a thrilling experience of navigating through the narrow slots and climbing over the smooth sandstone surfaces. The ever-changing colors and textures of the canyon walls make it a truly unique and unforgettable destination for travelers seeking a taste of the natural wonders of the American Southwest.

Don’t miss the chance to add Antelope Canyon to your road trip itinerary, where you can witness nature’s artistry at its finest and create lasting memories of this extraordinary place.

Lake Mead National Recreation Area, Nevada

Essential Information

– Route Options: Accessible from Scottsdale to Las Vegas
– Opening Hours: 24/7
– Fee: Entrance fee required
– Visit Duration: Half-day to full-day
– Ideal for: Nature lovers, outdoor enthusiasts

Why is it a must stop

When embarking on a road trip from Scottsdale to Las Vegas, a stop at Lake Mead National Recreation Area is a must for nature enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers alike. This stunning destination offers a variety of activities that are sure to captivate travelers seeking a break from the road.

One of the main draws of Lake Mead is its vast expanse of water, perfect for boating and fishing enthusiasts. Visitors can rent a boat or bring their own to explore the crystal-clear waters of the lake, surrounded by the breathtaking desert landscape. Fishing opportunities abound, with the chance to catch a variety of fish species that inhabit the lake.

For those looking to stretch their legs and take in the scenic beauty of the area, hiking trails offer a chance to explore the unique desert terrain. From easy strolls to more challenging hikes, there is a trail for every level of hiker. Be sure to bring plenty of water and sunscreen, as the desert sun can be intense.

Photography enthusiasts will find endless opportunities to capture the beauty of Lake Mead, from the striking contrast of the blue waters against the desert backdrop to the diverse wildlife that calls the area home. Keep an eye out for bighorn sheep, coyotes, and a variety of bird species that inhabit the region.

Whether you’re looking to relax by the water, explore the desert landscape, or simply take in the natural beauty of the area, Lake Mead National Recreation Area is a must-stop destination on your road trip from Scottsdale to Las Vegas. Plan to spend a half-day or full-day immersing yourself in the outdoor wonders that this stunning location has to offer.

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