Other Important Things To Know
- If you go to Rainbow Bridge from Bullfrog, youll have to get gas at Dangling Rope before you head back.
- Make sure you drink enough water and wear plenty of sunscreen. I promise you want to do both.
- There are bathrooms on the dock.
- Ask the park ranger about the dinosaur track near the bridge and they can point it out for you.
- It wont be as busy if you go earlier in the day, but that might be tough if you arent already out on the lake nearby, like on a houseboat.
- You dont need fancy hiking shoes if you go by boat. Most people do the hike in a swimsuit and flip flops. If you do want good hiking/water shoes, consider Chacos.
Things To See Near The Lake
The largest city near the southern part of Lake Powell is Page, which can be reached via US-89. Around Page, there is a myriad of beautiful places to visit. Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend are the most famous, but certainly not the only ones. To learn more, read our article about what to see in Page.
Closest Airports To Rainbow Bridge
The closest airport to this isolated area is in the city of Page, but the only way to get to the monument is by boat, or by foot. The Page municipal airport has flights to Denver and Phoenix, as well several companies that run scenic flights over Rainbow Bridge. The closest major airports are Phoenix and Las Vegas International Airports, both of which are about 5 hours away from Page. Flagstaff Arizona has a small airport with daily flights and a drive time of about 2.5 hours from Page. St George Utah also has daily flights and is a little over 3 hours away from Page.
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Navajo Canyon Boat Tour
Spend half of a day on Lake Powell exploring the richness of color found in this region by taking a tour of the Lake’s “Navajo Tapestry”. This tour leaves Wahweap Bay, following the original path of the mighty Colorado River to Navajo Canyon, located on the Navajo Nation.
During your journey to the side canyons, your US Coast Guard licensed crew will share with you, via public address system and personal discussions, many compelling stories rich in the cultural and natural history of this region. You will pass a number of famous landmarks, including Glen Canyon Dam.
Approximately four miles past the Dam your crew will point out the entrance to Antelope Canyon by water. This high-walled Navajo Sandstone side-arm of Lake Powell is famous for not only its coloration but also for its slot canyons, found at its head, about two miles east. During heavy summer rain, this canyon is known to experience flash flooding, due to its narrow width and high walls. Antelope Canyon has become a popular kayak destination!
You will sail another 6 miles up the lake to Navajo Canyon, an exciting example of “Navajo Tapestry”, the mix of colors found on its sandstone walls. Deep purples, burnt reds & oranges, and shiny blues are created by a natural mineral process, resulting in a “tapestry” of visual experience. This special patina takes centuries to form and is in a constant state of change.
Rainbow Bridge Is A Sacred Place
Rainbow Bridge is sacred to five Native American Nations in the Southwest the Navajo, Hopi, San Juan Southern Paiute, Kaibab Paiute, and White Mesa Ute.
When visiting, it is important to acknowledge and be respectful of the cultural significance Rainbow Bridge has on tribes of the Southwest.
In 1910, Rainbow Bridge became a National Monument. According to the National Park Service, the monument receives around 85,000 visitors a year. Before Glen Canyon National Recreation Area was artificially created, Rainbow Bridge was only accessible via foot traffic.
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Air Tours Of Lake Powell And The Surrounding Area
While it is true that many people visit the lake by boat, there are other types of equally fascinating tours, particularly helicopter and airplane tours, which can offer a totally new perspective of Lake Powell. Many of these also allow you to fly over the beautiful surroundings of the lake, offering a unique view of, for example, Horseshoe Bend. Others include access to Antelope Canyon in the price.
Best Time Of Year To Visit Rainbow Bridge
The best times of the year to visit Rainbow Bridge are March through November.
If you are boating there, it will pair well with lake activities during warmer months. Daily temperatures during the summer are easily 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you are hiking in from the North or South backcountry trails, it is recommended to hike during the spring and fall only. The summers are scorching hot in Utah.
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Wahweap Boat Tours 2017 Proposed Rates
There are no refreshments on the boat, but you may bring a small cooler or food with you. Boxed lunches may be purchased at the restaurant at Lake Powell Resort.
Adult — , half-day $122.00 – AAA 10% discount
Child — half-day $77 plus tax AAA 10% discount
One way Rainbow Bridge Tours are available please for information, and do no include lunch.
PRICES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE AT ANY TIME WITH NATIONAL PARK SERVICE APPROVAL.
Utahs Canyon Country Lodging
As you start getting further to the east, away from the lake, you can find a variety of great lodging options in the main communities of Utahs Canyon Country. These lodging options are great for those who would like to visit Lake Powell but would prefer to lodge in-town with more service and other attractions available.
The communities along Highway 191 such as Blanding, Bluff, and Monticello also offer a variety of dining options, shopping, and other services.
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Rainbow Bridge And Lake Powell Aerial Tour
Already did Antelope Canyon? An aerial tour of Lake Powell and Rainbow bridge is a great way to see the rest of the area. Like the Grand Canyon, the lake is simply too large to see from a single viewpoint. The best way to grasp the scale and beauty of the area is to be above it.
In addition to Lake Powell, you will fly over Rainbow Bridge. This is the largest natural bridge in the world, and a United States national monument. It takes about 2 hour to get there by boat, and then you have to hike about a mile with how low the water is.
Highly recommended tour. Its a great way to spend 25-30 minutes.
We are looking at arriving in Page on Jan 10 and staying until the 13th, then going to the Grand Canyon on the 13th, stay in Sedona 13th through 16th. Do you know if The wave/vermillion cliffs, Horse shoe bend, marble canyon are accessible/open now? In the Sedona area how about Devils Bridge, Bell rock loop trail, Boynton Canyon trail, Soldier Pass cave? My daughter has researched these using the All Trails app and she said they are open. Thank you for your comments and advice in advance
MoabSalt Lake city
Wed like to do some guided tours as well as quad rides, tubing/rafting, fishing, rock climbing.
Places along the way weve talked about , dead horse point, balanced rock, arches national park , skill arches, fiery furnace trail)the list could go on. . Can you help organize and book some of our tours and excursions, please?Julie
Rainbow Bridge National Monument Tour Options
The main activity at Rainbow Bridge National Monument is visiting the Bridge, but the area around the Monument offers boating, fishing and hiking, canyoneering and much more. You can see some recommended tours in Page, AZ and Lake Powell below if you want to go on a guided tour, or check Grand Canyon Tours if you’re visiting the canyon during your vacation and want a complete guide to tourist attractions in Grand Canyon National Park.
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What To Bring To Rainbow Bridge
Sunscreen You definitely need to wear sunscreen out on the lake. Trust me. Ive seen plenty of bad burns come through the lobby.
Water Drink a ton of water, especially if youre out in the sun a lot or hiking. You dont want to be the one flying out because of dehydration.
Snacks My preferred boat snack is Doritos. Its really almost the only time I eat them. Beef jerky and trail mix might be healthier and more energizing.
Sunglasses Its bright an will help with the wind in your face.
Chums These will keep your glasses from falling off into the lake.
Boaters Guide to Lake Powell This is a great guide if youll be spending a lot of time on the lake and want to get a better idea of what you can do. The print is small and close together but it is very helpful.
Lake Powell map This is a must for any Lake Powell trip.
Rainbow Bridge To Grand Canyon Road Trip
Rainbow Bride is located near the shores of Lake Powell in Southern Utah. Although Rainbow Bridge is a separate National Monument, it is run by Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, which also manages Lake Powell. If you want to include a visit to Rainbow Bridge on your Grand Canyon road trip, your best option is to drive to Page, AZ where you can take a boat ride across Lake Powell and hike about a mile to the observation area, or do a multi-day backpacking trip. This monument was of course created to protect Rainbow Bridge, the largest natural bridge in the world. The massive size and beautiful colors of this formation make it one of the most popular sites in canyon country. Over 90,000 visitors will make their way to Rainbow Bridge each year. If you plan on taking a boat to the bridge, Mid-May to Mid-September is your best bet. People wanting to backpack to the Rainbow Bridge will find the best weather in the late spring and fall seasons. Rainbow Bridge is also a sacred site to locative native people who have inhabited this area for thousands of years. Read the guide below to learn more about travel from Rainbow Bridge to the Grand Canyon, or check out our Rainbow Bridge National Monument map to see all the nearby destinations and attractions.
Grand Canyon Guru is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Thanks.
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Area Car Rental Options
Rainbow Bridge Car Rentals: There are several car rental agencies in Page, Arizona which is the closest city of any size to Rainbow Bridge, or you can pick one up at any major airport you fly into. If you want to find a rental car go to our Car Reservations page.
Rainbow Bridge Shuttles: There are a few companies that offer shuttles to Page, but the only real shuttles to Rainbow Bridge are boat tours.
Rainbow Bridge Tours At Lake Powell
Most boats are handicap accessible, but please give us advanced notice as some are not and the tour boat manager will want to be sure to schedule a boat that has handicap access for your tour. All boats have an interior seating area that is heated in the colder months with comfortable seating, restrooms and complimentary beverages. There is also outdoor setting available for full viewing and photographic opportunities on the top level. These boats do offer railings on the upper decks, but children must to be watched at all times. You are free to walk around the boat as you like. All children under 12 are not required to wear a life jacket, but if you want one, they are available. Infant life jackets are not a standard item on the tour boats, you should bring your own.
YOU MUST CANCEL UP TO 24 HOURS OR MORE PRIOR TO DEPARTURE TO AVOID BEING CHARGED AS A NO SHOW!
YOU CANNOT SWIM FROM THE TOUR BOATS.
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Best Hotels Near Rainbow Bridge
The closest thing you can get to lodging at Rainbow Bridge is a houseboat you brought out from one of Lake Powells Marinas. Most nearby lodging is in Page, AZ and you can some some popular hotels below. Backpackers who hike into the area, have the option of camping near the Bridge. Aside from the houseboats, hotels in Glen Canyon NRA are available at Wahweap and Bullfrog marinas, while Bullfrog, Wahweap, and Halls Crossing have RV parks and campgrounds. Outside of the NRA the town of Page has many lodging options as well as RV parks and campgrounds. Dispersed camping along the shores of Lake Powell and the NRA is free.
Where To Stay In Lake Powell
If you want to sleep right on the lake, we recommend the Lake Powell Resort , which is located near the Wahweap Marina. You can imagine that this is a very charming location. The hotel has rooms with a view of the lake and campsites for those who want to be in nature even when they sleep!
At Lake Powell Resort, it will be hard to find availability. In any case, it will not be difficult for you to find accommodations in Page or in the immediate vicinity, because there is no shortage of the most popular and reliable American motels and also some accommodations of higher quality. Book in advance, because Page is a very popular place! Below you will find our tips for finding accommodations in the city.
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Over The Rainbow & Lake Powell
The Southwests most intimate air tour. You will get down into Glen Canyon and see Lake Powell with magnificent Rainbow Bridge. Dont miss this opportunity to see the worlds largest natural bridge carved in stone. Book Online today for the best price!
In 1910, Rainbow Bridge was designated a National Monument by President William Taft. In the years that followed, a few more rugged individuals made the arduous trek to view Rainbow Bridge, including author Zane Grey and President Theodore Roosevelt. As recently as the 1950s, the trip to Rainbow Bridge still wasnt easy: back then, it could be made by taking a jet boat up the Colorado River through Glen Canyon, followed by a 3-day hike into Aztec Canyon.Southern Utah, August 14th, 1909.
After a grueling journey on horseback through a sun-scorched labyrinth of cliffs and canyons, a dozen men gazed upon the subject of legend: a sandstone arch in a nearly perfect parabolic shape, stretching almost three hundred feet wide, soaring nearly three hundred feet into the air. It truly deserved the name the nearby Navajo Indians had given it: Nonnezoshi a rainbow turned to stone.
When Lake Powell was at its highest point, half-day and full-day trips to Rainbow Bridge were available. As the waters of Lake Powell receded in the late 1990s, Rainbow Bridge remained accessible by boat, but requiring a full day tour, and a 1.5 mile walk each way in order to see the bridge.
Renting A Boat On Lake Powell
If youre just passing through as part of a bigger Utah road trip, this is going to be the best option for you. Whether youre in Bullfrog or Wahweap, you can see Rainbow Bridge in a day, but you wont have much time to see anything else.
If you dont feel comfortable driving a boat or just dont want to rent one, they can be a little pricey, then consider a boat tour to Rainbow Bridge.
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Notes Regarding All Boat Tours:
- Boat tours are operated by Lake Powell Resorts & Marinas, managed by Aramark, which is an authorized concessioner of the National Park Service, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area.
- NPS entry fee to the recreation area is NOT included in tour prices.
- Restrooms/toilets are available on board all tour boats.
- 48 hrs. notice is needed for all confirmations or cancellations for refunds.
- Child prices are for ages 3 to 12 years old.
- Children aged 2 and under are free but require a boarding pass.
- No pets allowed unless registered aid training animals with papers.
- There is NO Air Conditioning on any of the tour boats.
- All trips include complimentary water, coffee, and lemonade
- First come, first served on all seating
- Individual audio sets are included with every tour and are available in English, Spanish, German, French, Italian, Mandarin and Japanese.
- Boat trips depart on AZ Mountain Standard time
- Check in at tour desk 30 minutes prior to departure time to pick up boarding pass cards.
- Required minimum of 15 adult fares on all trips for boat tour to go
- “No shows” are charged the full amount of the tour
Canyon Princess Dinner Cruise
While relaxing on the Canyon Princess guests enjoy the breathtaking sunset on Lake Powell in the Captain’s choice of Wahweap Bay and surrounding areas. Guests have a choice of pan seared chicken breast, marinated beef tenderloin, honey bbq grilled salmon or roasted heriloom carrots with cauliflower mash. Entrees are chosen by the guest during the dinner cruise. Premium cash bar on hand. Call Lake Powell Resorts & Marinas to book your Canyon Princess Dinner Cruise at 928-645-1150.
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Rainbow Bridge National Monument Custom Tours
We offer escorted tours by boat to Rainbow Bridge National Monument, the largest and most beautiful natural bridge in the world. Depending on the water level and boat used, this is a 3 to 6 hour boat tour. This custom tour is uaually part of one of our “Custom Day Tours” or part of a longer multi-day Custom Tour. Our escorted Rainbow Bridge tour can be part of a larger group tour on a large size boat or it can be on a smaller size speed boat. When the lake is high, very little or no walking is require to get to the bridge by boat. In very low water years a one way hike of up to 3/4 of a mile is required. But the walk is more than worth the effort. It is a spectacular span of sandstone perfectly carved into an elegant natural bridge.
Located in an isolated canyon at the feet of Navajo Mountain, Rainbow Bridge was known for centuries by the ancient Pueblo people, who considered the bridge to be sacred. Much later, Paiute and Navajo groups named the bridge Nonnezoshe or “rainbow turned to stone.” Several Native American families still reside somewhat near the area.