If you’re looking for an exciting road trip, look no further than the route from Phoenix, AZ to Las Vegas, NV. This drive is filled with stunning scenery and interesting stops, making it a must-do for anyone who loves exploring new places. Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or a longer vacation, here’s what you need to know to make the most of your road trip from Phoenix to Las Vegas.
The best time to take a Phoenix to Las Vegas road trip is during the Spring or Fall when temperatures are cooler and more pleasant. We took our road trip at the end of September, and the weather was perfect! Both Arizona and Nevada are extremely HOT states! So avoid traveling during the summer months when temperatures can reach upwards of 110 degrees Fahrenheit. This will ensure that you can fully enjoy the drive and all the stops along the way without being overwhelmed by the heat.
And if you’re also looking for activities in Vegas, check out our Vegas Guide here.
There are two main routes to choose from when taking a road trip from Phoenix to Las Vegas.
The first route (400 miles) is via Interstate 10 West to Interstate 17 north, which will take you through Sedona and Flagstaff before connecting to Interstate 40 west. From there, you can take U.S. Route 93 north to Las Vegas. The first route takes a bit longer than the second one with 6 hours without any stops. This drive offers stunning stops through Sedona and Flagstaff – two fan favorites.
The second option (300 miles) is to take US. Route 60 northwest out of Phoenix, which will eventually connect with US Route 93 and take you directly to Las Vegas. This route takes around 5 hours, not including stops along the way. This is typically the quickest route, which we opted to go with on our road trip to Vegas. There are also really fun stops along this route, including small towns like Nothing, AZ, and Kingman.
Depending on which route you take, the drive from Phoenix to Las Vegas will take between 5 – 6 hours. That doesn’t include stops, so be prepared to add on time for stops along the way, eating, bathroom breaks, and charging/filling up gas.
One of the best parts of a road trip is the stops. And if you’re looking for a fun road trip, the route from Phoenix, AZ to Las Vegas, NV is filled with them. Here are some of the best stops on your Phoenix to Las Vegas road trip.
This stunning desert town is most well known for its red rock formations. But you can also take a stroll down Main Street, stop in at a local art gallery or restaurant, drive through Highway 89 or take a hike in one of the many incredible trails in this area. And here are some of the must-see red rock formations: Cathedral Rock, Bell Rock, Snoopy Rock, Crescent Moon, Chapel of the Holy Cross, and Courthouse Butte.
Hidden Gem. If you want a view of the entire Sedona landscape, head to the Sedona Airport, and right next to it is a scenic overlook with panoramic views of all the red rocks. Not too many people go there because it’s off the main route, but it’s a hidden gem for sure!
One of our favorite National Monuments in Arizona, it’s a great stop along the way to Las Vegas. And because it’s a smaller sight, you can see the entire area in about an hour – making it a perfect stop on a road trip. The walking loop is paved so it’s also a great stop for mobile impaired. There is also a picnic area, so if you want combine a stop with food, this is a great place to do it.
After leaving Sedona, make your way to Flagstaff. It’s such a charming mountain town home to Northern Arizona University and a gateway to the Grand Canyon. Explore the historic downtown area, check out the Lowell Observatory, and don’t forget Route 66. It’s also a HUGE ski hub, so if you’re taking this road trip during winter, add a ski trip stop here.
Although the Grand Canyon is a bit off the main route of this road trip, if you haven’t seen it yet – this is your chance! If you’re feeling adventurous, take a detour and one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. You won’t be disappointed! You can find our full guide to the Grand Canyon here.
Another great stop along the way is the town of Williams, located on historic Route 66. Take a stroll through the downtown area, grab a bite to eat, and check out the Route 66 Zipline for a unique view of the town. Williams is also home to the Grand Canyon Railway. Hop on board for scenic train rides to the Grand Canyon and the Polar Express during the holidays. And don’t forget a stop at Bearizona, a wildlife conservation park where you’ll have the opportunity to see and learn about wildlife in Arizona.
Wickenburg is a really cute little western town with quaint little shops and fun cowboy memorabilia all around. It’s a great stop to walk around and stretch your legs. There’s also a cool museum to visit, and don’t forget to stop into Nana’s Sandwich Shop for lunch or a snack.
One of the stops along the historic Route 66, Kingman is a great stop on this road trip. Check out the Locomotive Park, take a stroll in Downtown Kingman, and make sure to take a road trip photo and the famous Route 66 Kingman sign.
Just a few miles from the Hoover Dam, the Lake Mead National Recreation Area is a popular destination. Whether you want to hike, bike, or boat, there’s plenty to see and do in this gorgeous area. And if you’re looking to stay longer than just a stop, there’s camping options too!
Located on the border of Arizona and Nevada, this massive dam is one of those MUST-SEE items to add to your trip! You can take a tour of the dam or walk across the Hoover Dam Bridge for stunning views of the Colorado River. You can even make a quick stop and pop out to take in the stunning views!
This state park is located just outside of Las Vegas and is known for its stunning red rock formations and ancient petroglyphs. Take a hike through the park or stop in at the visitor center to learn more about the area’s history.
About 30 minutes outside Vegas, The Seven Magic Mountains are cool rock art sculptures and a great road trip stop on your trip. Considered land art, they colorful sculptures are more than 30ft. high in the Nevada Desert. According to the artist, the Seven Magic Mountains represent the meeting of artificial and natural, the passing highway traffic, and the surrounding mountains and lakes. Mia particularly loved this stop and making her own version of the art.
Just outside of Las Vegas, Red Rock Canyon is also a popular stop for outdoorsy adventurers. With lot of hiking trails, rock climbing opportunities, and even desert wildlife. Take a scenic drive through the park or go for a hike to experience the beauty of the Mojave Desert.
Want to the secret to a successful road trip with kids? Bring along your survival kit! Over the years, our kit has changed as Mia has gotten older, but the idea is the same. Find those awesome road trip gems – aka, must-brings for your car. And here are ours. From car organization to fun games and books, here’s what we don’t leave home without:
Our favorite Road Trip with Kids gems:
And once you get to Las Vegas, there are many things you can do with your family (don’t listen to people who tell you otherwise!) We have spent a lot of time in Vegas with and without kids, and had a great time in both situations. If you’re looking for family-friendly activities and hotels in Vegas, check out our Las Vegas Travel Guides. They will definitely get you started!
If you have an electric car and are planning a road trip from Phoenix, AZ to Las Vegas, NV, here are some tips to make your road trip the best one ever! Not only is it cheaper than gas, but it also adds a fun and unique element to your trip. Here’s everything you need to know to make the most of your Phoenix to Las Vegas road trip with an electric car, including interesting stops along the way.
Before setting off on your road trip, it’s important to plan your route and charging stops. Since electric cars have a limited range, it’s essential to plan out where you will charge your vehicle along the way. If you have a Tesla, it will automatically take care of this for you. This is one of the features I love about our Tesla. And if you have another electric car model, one of the best resources for planning your electric road trip is the PlugShare app. It allows you to search for charging stations along your route and provides real-time updates on their availability.
Fortunately, there are a number of charging stations located throughout Arizona and Nevada. This makes it quite easy to travel between Phoenix and Las Vegas. No need to worry about finding charging stations.
PRO TIP: It’s also a good idea to check with your hotel or accommodation to see if they offer charging facilities, as this can save you time and hassle. Many hotels in Vegas do, and are located in the best parking spots.
We’ve taken quite a long few road trips in our electric car, including Phoenix to Albuquerque, Phoenix to San Diego, and Phoenix to Los Angeles. And they’ve all been fantastic! We’ve also taken many shorter trips to Tucson, Flagstaff, and the Grand Canyon. Here are some tips to make your road trip smoother:
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