After we packed our stuff up and left Monument Valley (if you haven’t gotten the chance to check out my post about the Valley, click here) we headed out on the 2.5 hour drive to Page. If you’re stopping through northern Arizona and have the time to stop by, there are two star attractions in Page that will blow you away.
Where to stay:
We wanted to give ourselves ample time when exploring so we decided it best to stay the night in Page to ensure we had time to see everything we wanted to see. When researching lodging, we looked at both airbnbs and hotels and we opted for a hotel right on Lake Powell. The Lake Powell Resort is located right on the water within Glen Canyon National Park. We lucked out and didn’t have to pay for the park entrance fee (normally $25 per vehicle) due to the fact that it was the weekend of a national holiday. Tip: If you’re planning on going to a national park, try to schedule it when entrance fees are waved. The dates and parks that participate are listed here. This will save you 20-30 dollars per park. But anywhooo…
We’ve all heard that hotels recommend checking in at 4. Well at this particular resort, they aren’t kidding. We got to the resort around 2 o’clock and were not allowed to check in until 4 on the dot. This meant we were stuck in the lobby for 2 hours with pretty much nothing to do. Now I did overhear others try to check in and I believe they do offer a temporary key card to use the pool while you wait, however we didn’t try to ask. It’s always worth the shot. Luckily, we were able to persuade the front desk agent to give us a room at about 3:30-3:45 but the sitting around part wasn’t exactly my favorite. If you are able to get there later, save yourself the trouble and wait and do so.
The best part about this hotel however is the views and the amenities. They have boat and hiking tours going out almost every hour which are some of the best ways to experience Lake Powell. Unfortunately we did not have time to book a tour because we had to leave early the following morning but I would definitely return and spend a bit more time on the water. We were able to walk around the hotel a bit to look at the views and they were pretty incredible.
Where to eat:
Okay, I’m not gonna lie, by the time we got to Page, we were in dire need of some food that didn’t come from a fast food chain or small dumpy restaurant. With a little research we stumbled upon a restaurant that ended up being one of my favorites of the entire trip.
It’s got 4/5 stars on yelp so we decided this was our best option and that we were just going to go for it. If you like beer, I think you’ll be pretty happy. They’ve also got a pretty good cocktail menu. The menu is pretty extensive and includes things such as sandwiches, salads, burgers, steaks, and pastas. I got the carne aside tacos and I was pretty dang impressed which is hard to do because I’m a Mexican food snob. Adam ended up picking the kimchi ruben, one of their most popular menu items, and loved it. The service was good and the atmosphere is very laid back. They are only open for dinner Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. They are closed on Tuesdays and open early on Saturday and Sunday so be sure to check their hours before you head down there.
So I’m mentioning this one despite the fact that we didn’t eat here because I’ve heard nothing but good things and when we drove by, it looked like everyone there was having the time of their lives. They’re open from 11 AM to 10 PM every day and they’ve got your typical BBQ menu consisting of brisket, pulled pork, ribs, etc. We were passing by on a Sunday night and they had line dancing out front and live music. We almost pulled off right then and there to join but I’m not quite a BBQ fan (oops).
What to do:
Okay, now the fun part. With Page being such a small town, you wouldn’t expect that there’d be much to do. In a way, this is true. That’s why I said if you have one day to stop by do so because this gives you plenty of time to see the two main attractions.
I feel like Horseshoe Bend has got to be one of the most photographed spots in the country at this point. And for good reason. Right off of Highway 89 lies a giant canyon with unbelievable views. You will see a dirt parking lot on the side of the road where you can pull over and find a spot (there are plenty of spots). The hike into the canyon is about 3/4 mile and consists of a dirt pathway. It can be somewhat steep to some so be sure to bring water because it can get pretty warm depending on the time of year you go. They say to wear comfortable shoes but if you’re not wearing hiking boots, don’t sweat. I wore regular booties and had no problem. The big question is: when is the best time to go? Some say during the day, others say at sunrise/sunset.
When we got to Page, we knew we wanted to see it at sunset. I had always pictured it as having the best lighting. So we got there about 5 minute before the sun was setting (we ran a little behind but hey, still got the money shots). It was pretty busy and we busted our butts trying to get to the bottom in time but we succeeded. I will say, the crowds are busier at night. This makes for getting pictures harder. But the lighting is to die for. Exhibit A:
On our way to Williams, we decided to stop by one more time. This time it was about noon. The park was a lot less busy however you did have that sun beating down on you more so it was a bit warmer. We were able to casually stroll this time rather than run which made it more relaxing and easier. When we got to the bottom, the canyon was just as alluring as the night before. I think one thing that worked our favor was the fact that it was a bit cloudy so we weren’t getting the harsh sun.
I think both are pretty spectacular so I guess it’s up to you to decide which one is better.
Like Horseshoe Bend, I think this is probably is one of the most instagrammed spots to date. Because Antelope Canyon is a navajo park, you are required to have a tour guide to go in. The tour that we took was about 40 dollars a person which includes the tour and the park entrance fee. I believe there are a lot of different companies that run tours but we just picked one of the first we found on google which ending up being a sightseeing tour of the upper canyon. The tour we took lasted about 90 minutes and it was phenomenal. We chose to go for the 9:30 AM time slot because that is supposedly when you get the best lighting and it’s emptiest. Our tour guide, I really wish I could remember her name, did an amazing job at making sure we got the pictures where the canyon was empty. She also took multiple pictures for us and showed where the magic shots are.
I think Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend were my two favorite stops we made on the entire roadtrip and I hope this guide helps a bit. Have you been to Antelope Canyon or Horseshoe Bend? How’d you like it? Did I miss any tips or tricks that you can think of? I’d love to hear from you. XO8