Written by 6:29 pm National Park Guides, Travel

National Park Guides

A Campers Guide to Arizona’s Best National Parks


Arizona is a filled with amazing natural wonders. With ecosystems ranging from alpine to desert, there are many magnificent spots to enjoy. The National Parks of Arizona preserve and celebrate some of the state’s most amazing spots. Here is some information on some of these amazing destinations that every visitor to the state should try to explore.

Canyon De Chelly National Monument, Chinle

The Canyon de Chelly National Monument is one of Arizona’s true gems.Visitors will discover a vast amount of information about the landscape that has been one of the longest continually inhabited in North America. The monument preserves rock art, artifacts, architecture and much more. Canyon de Chelly also has a living community of Navajo people.

Casa Grande Ruins National Monument, Coolidge

This National Monument preserves some ruins of an Ancient Sonoran Desert People’s community. In addition to being a wonderful archeological site, it is also the first site preserved by the federal government. Visitors can spend time learning all about the site and the culture. There is a museum at the visitor center, and visitors can also take a self-guided or guided tour of the site.

Chiricahua National Monument, Willcox

Chiricahua National Monument is a “Wonderland of Rocks.” Visitors to this site have a variety of options for exploring the natural wonders preserved here. While driving on the scenic drive, or hiking on the miles of hiking trails, visitors can enjoy wildlife viewing and more. The real wonder of this park is the rock pinnacles that are balanced amazingly. These geologic wonders are one of the hidden treasures of Arizona’s national parks.

Grand Canyon National Park, Grand Canyon

One of the most amazing natural wonders you may ever see, the Grand Canyon is a true must-see canyon destination. The enormous canyon at its widest is 18 miles wide and at its deepest is a mile deep. During the summer months both the South and North Rim are open. The South Rim is busier, but the lodges and other sights along this side are worth the time to explore. The North Rim is much more rural, and offers some great backcountry options. The Desert View Drive is a great car tour option, the 26 miles of road travel between the Grand Canyon Village and the parks east entrance. You can enjoy hiking, Mule trips, scenic drives, and for those that planned well in advance rafting trips on the Colorado River through the inspiring vistas of the Grand Canyon.

Montezuma Castle National Monument, Camp Verde

Montezuma Castle National Monument allows visitors to see and explore one of the best examples of cliff dwellings on the continent. There is a loop, that all visitors can enjoy, which passes around Montezuma’s Castle and is a great self-guided tour. In addition, for those that want a longer program, the park rangers offer daily programs to learn about the amazing cliff dwelling.

Navajo National Monument, Black Mesa

This Monument preserves some amazing prehistoric Puebloan villages. These villages were built in the walls of the sandstone canyons in the region, and many of the features of these structures remains today. Visitors can see the roof beams, rock art and much more of these ancient villages. One great way to enjoy the features of this park is to take a guided tour of the various structures. Not only do you get to see and hear about the monument, but you also get to enjoy some fantastic hiking.

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, Ajo

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument is an amazing destination to enjoy the beauty of the Sonoran Desert. There are many ways to enjoy the features of this park, including scenic drives and plenty of hiking. Both of these activities are fantastic opportunities to enjoy the beauty of the desert. Named after the Organ Pipe Cactus dotting the landscape, the Sonoran Desert is a unique landscape, filled with interesting flora and fauna. This National Monument is a great destination to enjoy the warmth and beauty of this unique landscape.

Petrified Forest National Park

Arizona has excellent examples of some of the ancient history the Americas. One place to learn about this and see it in person is at Petrified Forest National Park. This park has an amazing concentration of petrified wood, giving visitors the chance to envision the forests that once covered the land. The park also has beautiful scenery, archeological sites and a collection of fossils.

Pipe Spring National Monument, Fredonia

The Pipe Springs have been an important of desert survival for many groups. This water has been used by animals, American Indians and pioneers. Visitors can learn all about the important role this spring has played at the monument. There is a museum, as well as historic buildings including a fort, cabins, orchard and more. Another great feature of this park is the living history demonstrations.

Saguaro National Park, Tucson

Saguaro National Park is dedicated to the preservation of the stunning Saguaro cactus. The amazing, towering cactus only grows in a select part of the world. Visitors to the Saguaro National Park will have the opportunity to see much more than just the Saguaro. There are guided programs and many opportunities for recreation within the park. Saguaro National Park is an especially good location for wilderness hiking.

Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument, Flagstaff

This park protects the remnants of a series of volcanic eruptions that occurred sometime around 1000. Visitors to this park can enjoy the lava flows, the cinders and much more. In addition, you can enjoy seeing how the flora and fauna return to the landscape. Now, you can enjoy the flowers, wildlife and much more.

Tonto National Monument, Roosevelt

Tonto National Monument is a wonderful example of a cliff dwelling. Located in the northeaster Sonoran Desert, this is a great destination to explore. This park has less crowds than some of the others in the state, which means visitors can spend time enjoying the historic dwellings. In the spring visitors can enjoy the wildflowers, and throughout the year there are great views and much more.

Tuzigoot National Monument, Clarkdale

Visitors to this monument can enjoy the perspective from the top of this historic pueblo. From this monument visitors have the opportunity to enjoy seeing the remains of the ancient dwellings. Travelers can learn about the monument by hiking the various trails, which take visitors on a tour of the pueblo and enjoying the area as well.

Walnut Canyon National Monument, Flagstaff

Walnut Canyon is another amazing example of ancient cliff dwellings. Not only does this monument have amazing geological formations, it also has excellent examples of ancient homes. Visitors can enjoy these formations by hiking along the trails. These trails take visitors along ancient paths followed by many before and give an opportunity to see how life was for those that lived in the area.

Wupatki National Monument, Flagstaff

Wupatki National Monument is located on the Colorado Plateau, where there is very little water or food. Here visitors will discover an ancient pueblo. While exploring this monument visitors can learn about the people that lived here and the trade that took place here. Examples of trade items from across the region have been found here. Visitors can learn all about the history of this area on the trails and through exploring the five pueblos within the monument.

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