For visitors accessing the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park from the east—via Desert View Entrance Station—Navajo Point is the second vantage point along the way. Navajo Point is easily accessible from Desert View Drive; it even has its own dedicated parking area. It is the highest elevation found along the South Rim, offering breathtaking views of the Grand Canyon from a nearly unparalleled perspective. The Colorado River is visible from here, and the sunrises are legendary from this lovely spot.
Navajo Point History and Background
At approximately 7,500 feet, Navajo Point has the highest elevation of any natural viewing station along the South Rim. The only site in the entire region that offers a view of the Grand Canyon from a higher spot is the top-floor observation area of the seven-story stone structure known as the Desert View Watchtower. From Navajo Point’s vantage you can see a great deal of the western portion of the canyon, including the Colorado River and Tanner Canyon.
What’s at Navajo Point
Given its location at the eastern end of Grand Canyon National Park, the majority of the view from Navajo Point is to the west. This makes it an especially good place to visit during the morning hours. Looking westward, you will note a wide variety of notable landmarks. Large segments of the Colorado River and its associated rapids are visible, as well as such distant formations as Yaki Point and Shiva Temple.
There are plenty of hiking opportunities along the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. Of particular note near Navajo Point is Grandview Trail. Located just a twenty-minute drive to the west down Desert View Drive, this famous trailhead is found at Grandview Point. This steep, historic trail winds down the canyon walls across century-old cobblestones before winding up near the ruins of the old Last Chance Mine.
As for amenities, anything you could need or want while visiting the Grand Canyon is available just one mile east of Navajo Point at Desert View. There you will find various kinds of food and drink, a marketplace, a campground, a gas station, ample parking, and telephone services. There is even a gift shop on the premises.
Tips for Visiting Navajo Point
- Navajo Point is one of the best places in Grand Canyon National Park to watch the sunrise, so set your alarm and don’t forget your camera!
- If you have a limited amount of time to tour the Grand Canyon, consider skipping Grand Canyon Visitor Center (and the popular Hermits Road) and heading straight to Navajo Point. Navajo Point, Desert View, and Lipan Point are all located within three miles of each other, and they all feature views that rival anything found in busier parts of the Park!
- If you are a particular fan of Mary Colter’s acclaimed Desert View Watchtower, you will want to make certain to stop at Navajo Point. In addition to the remarkable natural sights visible from here, Navajo Point provides a unique glimpse of the Desert View Watchtower from a very unique angle.
- While Desert View is the nearest spot to Navajo Point that features extensive amenities, it can get quite busy and crowded during peak times. To avoid that kind of congestion, while at the same time creating a distinctive experience for yourself, consider taking your own food just one mile to the west and having a picnic near Navajo Point.