Wondermondo 🢖 World 🢖 Wonders of North America 🢖 Wonders of the United States 🢖 Wonders of Arizona


Wonders of Arizona

Spider Rock, Canyon de Chelly
Spider Rock, Canyon de Chelly./ Larry Lamsa, Flickr / CC BY 2.0

WorldBlue  Highlights

Some of the world’s most impressive sights are located in Arizona. This American state has such landmarks of world fame as Grand Canyon and Monument Valley. The most amazing wonders of Arizona are:

  • Canyons and cliff formations. Grand Canyon is by far the largest canyon not only in Arizona but in whole America and one of the most prominent natural landmarks in the world. But there are many more impressive canyons – some are wide and majestic, some – very narrow, dark. Arizona is very rich with amazing rock formations – hoodoos, colored cliffs, beautiful natural arches.
  • Ancient cliff dwellings. The majestic natural setting of Arizona and hostilities between the people of Arizona approximately one thousand years ago inspired the unique design of settlements which were built in cliff overhangs.

Map with the described wonders

Travelers' Map is loading...
If you see this after your page is loaded completely, leafletJS files are missing.

WorldViolet Top 25 wonders of Arizona

Geological wonders

Grand Canyon

Possibly the most impressive canyon in the world. This 446 km long canyon is up to 1,800 m deep and has rugged, nearly vertical walls.

Grand Canyon, Arizona
Grand Canyon / Catron S., CC-BY-SA-3.0
Meteor Crater (Barringer crater)

Visually the most impressive meteorite impact crater on Earth. The diameter of the crater is about 1,180 m, depth is 170 m. The outer side of the rim rises 45 m high above the surrounding plains. The bottom is covered with a 210 – 240 m thick layer of rubble. The impact took place some 49,000 years ago.

Meteor Crater from the south
Meteor Crater, view from the rim / Graeme Churchard, Flickr / CC BY 2.0
The Wave in Arizona

Unusual sandstone formation with colorful, undulating forms.

The Wave, Arizona
The Wave / Greg Mote, / CC BY 2.0
Monument Valley

Monumental desert landscape with enormous, up to 300 m tall sandstone buttes. Numerous magnificent natural arches, rock stacks, and other formations.

Monument Valley, Arizona
Monument Valley / Wolfgang Staudt, / CC BY 2.0
Upper Antelope Canyon

Approximately 200 m long slot canyon that provides numerous grand sights. This is the more popular part of the Antelope Canyon because it does not require climbing and sunlight shines in it fairly frequently.

Upper Antelope Canyon
Upper Antelope Canyon. / Yogendra Joshi, Flickr / CC BY 2.0
Kartchner Caverns

This gorgeous cave was discovered in 1974. The cave contains amazing and even unique cave formations, and the process of their formation continues. Here is located one of the world’s longest soda straws: 647 cm long! The length of the cave passages is some 3.9 – 4 km.

Kartchner Caverns, Big Room
Kartchner Caverns, Big Room./ Mike Lewis, Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0
Tonto Natural Bridge

Possibly the largest natural bridge from the travertine. The bridge represents a 120 m long tunnel, up to 46 m wide and 56 m high.

Tonto Natural Bridge
Tonto Natural Bridge./ ksblack99, Flickr / public domain
Havasu Canyon

A side canyon of the tributary of the Grand Canyon. Havasu canyon is very spectacular due to the light blue color of calcium carbonate-rich spring water, which contrasts with the red color of the cliffs. Numerous limestone terraces, and large waterfalls.

Havasu Canyon
Havasu Canyon./ Richard, Flickr / CC BY 2.0
Oak Creek Canyon

Enormous canyon – gorge, approximately 19 km long. Depth is up to 600 m.

Oak Creek Canyon
Oak Creek Canyon./ Marcus Winter, Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0
Mooney Falls

Approximately 58 m tall waterfall in Havasu canyon. Around the falls are interesting tufa formations, and below the falls have formed terraces.

Mooney Falls
Mooney Falls./ Mark Reed, Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 2.5
Grand Canyon Caverns

Cave with enormous cave rooms. Contains remnants of some extinct animals, e.g. ground sloth. Caves can be accessed through a 64 m deep shaft while the natural entrance has been sealed off as it is a sacred place to the Hualapai people.

Grand Canyon Caverns - former fallout shelter
Grand Canyon Caverns – former fallout shelter./ Lauri Väin, Flickr / CC BY 2.0
Grand Falls in Arizona

An enormous waterfall. Grand Falls are 56 m tall and, at high water – more than 150 m wide. Muddy water flows over the falls. For the most part of the year, only small trickles fall, but at snowmelt and rain, the sight here is spectacular.

Grand Falls, Arizona
Grand Falls, Arizona./ Richard Hurd, Flickr / CC BY 2.0
Chiricahua National Monument

Site with a large number of spectacular vertical rock formations, including impressive balancing rocks.

Chiricahua National Monument, Big Balanced Rock
Chiricahua National Monument, Big Balanced Rock./ jb10okie, Flickr / CC BY-ND 2.0
Lower Antelope Canyon

Very impressive slot canyon that is 407 m long and some 37 m deep. This is a bit less popular tourist destination than the Upper Antelope Canyon nearby.

Lower Antelope Canyon
Lower Antelope Canyon./ Anna Irene, Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Biological wonders

Saguaro National Park, West

One of the best locations to see the unique saguaro cactus (Carnegia gigantea) stands with thousands of these giant cacti. One of the most biologically diverse deserts in the world.

Saguaro National Park, Arizona
Saguaro National Park / , Flickr / CC BY 2.0

Archaeological wonders

Montezuma Castle

Very well preserved cliff dwelling, built by the Sinagua people around 700 AD and occupied until 1400 AD. Occasional religious ceremonies take place here up to this day. Access to the site requires a long ladder or very good climbing skills.

Montezuma Castle
Montezuma Castle./ Robert Montgomery, Flickr / CC BY 2.0
Antelope House

Impressive ruins of Anasazi settlement under cliff overhang. Abandoned around 1260. Nearby was the Tomb of Weaver which contained a mummified body of an old man.

Antelope House
Antelope House./ James St. John, Flickr / CC BY 2.0
White House Ruins

Ruins of Anasazi settlements under a rock overhang. Ruins of a once large building with 80 rooms that were inhabited in 1040 – 1275 AD. Numerous petroglyphs are nearby.

White House Ruins, Arizona
White House Ruins / Ronnie Macdonald, / CC BY 2.0
Keet Seel

Abandoned Anasazi cliff dwelling, occupied in 1250, abandoned around 1300 AD. Here lived up to 150 people. Contains a circular tower, one of the most prominent cliff dwellings in the United States. Located under a cliff overhang.

Keet Seel
Keet Seel./ Alan English CPA, Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0
Palatki Pueblo

Ruins of Sinagua settlement from 1100 – 1400 AD and rich finds of petroglyphs from 4000 BC – 1400 AD.

Palatki Pueblo
Palatki Pueblo./ Coconino National Forest, Ariz., Flickr / public domain

Abandoned Anasazi cliff dwelling that once had up to 120 rooms for up to 125 people, now some 80 rooms remain. Located under a spectacular cliff overhang.

Betatakin./ Ken Lund, Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0
Tonto Upper Cliff Dwelling

The largest ancient cliff dwelling in Tonto National Monument. An ancient structure with some 40 rooms in a natural alcove. It was developed and inhabited by Salado culture around 1300 – 1350 AD.

Tonto Upper Cliff Dwelling
Tonto Upper Cliff Dwelling./ JB Wright Photo, Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

Architecture wonders

Hoover Dam

Comparatively old and enormous dam for the hydropower station, 221 m high. The structure is adorned with details in Art Deco style and was constructed in 1931 – 1936.

Hoover Dam
Hoover Dam./ Airwolfhound, Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0
Large Binocular Telescope

One of the most sophisticated optical telescopes in the world with two 8.4 m large mirrors. Constructed in 1996 – 2004.

Large Binocular Telescope
Large Binocular Telescope./ NASA, Wikimedia Commons / public domain

One of the oldest continuously inhabited settlements in the United States. Founded before 1100 AD. Stronghold of Hopi culture and traditions, with traditional architecture.

WorldYellow Recommended books

Fodor’s Arizona & The Grand Canyon

From the vastness of the Grand Canyon to Sedona’s red rocks and the living Sonoran Desert, Arizona’s landscapes are awe-inspiring. The state’s spectacular canyons, blooming deserts, raging rivers, petrified forests, and scenic mountains enthrall lovers of the outdoors in pursuit of hiking, rafting, golf, or picturesque spots to watch the sunset. In full color throughout, Fodor’s Arizona and the Grand Canyon helps travelers take advantage of the state’s myriad pleasures, including outstanding museums and galleries, Navajo and Hopi cultural experiences, three national parks, and world-renowned spas.

Overlooked Arizona

From the towering saguaro cacti of her deserts to the pine-covered mountains of the Mogollon Rim, Arizona is filled with wonderful attractions that most visitors never get to see. Frontier forts, ghost towns, Spanish missions, historical museums, canyons, and winding mountain roads are all waiting for you, with adventure along every mile of the way. Come explore with this handy guidebook!

5 1 vote
Article Rating
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments