Guess what? It’s winter and there are still a lot of people at the Grand Canyon. And after a long day at the canyon a lot of these folks get hungry. Almost all, in fact. There are not that many places to eat and you won’t have the luxury of flitting from spot to spot checking menus to decide where to dine. Before you just hop on the end of a long line to eat you may want to know what is in store when you get a table in the park…
Mather Point Cafe (next door to the Visitor Center at 10 South Entrance Road)
Winter Hours: December-March, 7:00 am – 7:00 pm
Specializes in healthy options from local sustainable suppliers. Fare includes gourmet sandwiches, wraps, burritos, soups and salads with a full line of on-the-go eats. Especially proud of its FireCreek Coffee Company brews.
Arizona Room (Bright Angel Lodge on the South Rim)
Winter Hours: Lunch: 11:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (no lunch in November and December); Dinner: 4:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
You can see the North Rim from this dining room. Serves casual Southwestern fare from buffalo burgers to hand-cut steaks. Beer, wine and cocktails are available. No reservations accepted and the line starts forming at least a half-hour ahead of opening.
Bright Angel Restaurant (Bright Angel Lodge on the South Rim)
Winter Hours: Lunch: 11:15 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; Dinner: 4:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.; no breakfast in winter
Family favorites served up in the classic style of the Harvey House, the original Grand Canyon concessionaire. Casual attire and first come, first served inside the mosaic-lined dining room. For the two weeks around Christmas and New Year’s the Bright Angel Fountain out front will serve popular to-go food if the weather is agreeable.
El Tovar Dining Room (El Tovar Hotel on the South Rim)
Winter Hours: Lunch: Breakfast – 6:30am to 10:45am; Lunch – 11:15am to 2:00pm; no winter dinner
Enjoy fine dining Grand Canyon style – this is the top-of-the-line eatery in the park. Reservations are a must – taken 30 days in advance and up to six months ahead for lodge guests. Southwestern fare in a lodge setting that pays tribute to the four Native American tribes whose cultures intersect with the canyon. Note: renovations are taking place at the El Tovar dining room through April of 2017.
Phantom Ranch Canteen (bottom of the Grand Canyon)
Winter Hours: 5:30 a.m. and 7:00 am seatings for breakfast; 5:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m seatings for dinner
After descending down the Bright Angel Trail (9.6 miles) or the Kaibib Trail (7.8 miles) on foot or on the back of a mule a meal is waiting at the Phantom Ranch on the canyon floor. Reservations are required and do not be late for your seating. Grub includes steak dinner, hiker’s stew or vegetarian chili dinner.
Maswik Food Court (Maswik Lodge on the South Rim)
Winter Hours: 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
Family-friendly fuel with four feeding stations of familiar dishes. Casual seating or lunches prepared in “to go” containers for Grand Canyon explorers. The Pizza Pub is open an hour later and offers a sports bar atmosphere, including beer.
Canyon Village Deli (Canyon Village Market)
Winter Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
There are tables to relax and enjoy a deli sandwich or a salad or you can get trail food to go. The market has fresh vegetables and cheeses as well. If the weather is warm enough to set up Village Dogs out front you can sample a Straight Shooter Dog or the Grand Canyon Dog which is a tube steak smothered with grilled onions, bacon, pinto beans, Fresno onions, tomato, mayonnaise, and jalapeno salsa.
Yavapai Cafeteria (Yavapai Lodge across from Market Plaza)
Winter Hours: Closed save for Thanksgiving weekend and Christmas week; then open 6:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
To help ease the overflow of holiday visitors this cafeteria roars to life for all three meals. You can get your burgers and pizza pies and also stick-to-your-ribs favorites like pot pies and fried chicken. No reservations needed. Casual all the way.