Visiting Route 66 and Monument Valley–ARIZONA
Arizona is a hidden treasure which is worth a visit!!!
There aren´t airports around, neither public transport, so renting a car is the best option to begin the adventure.
Starting the road trip at the west of Historic Route 66 and driving through and stopping by classic towns like Kingman, Peach Springs, Seligman, Williams and Flagstaff. As you can imagine, this route is full of bikers with huge adapted motorbikes that most of the time travel in groups, shout and wave at you. Very good vibes! The towns along the route look as the time had stopped in the past century and they are full of diners and shops where you can buy very cool cowboy boots and hats for reasonable prices.
The food in Arizona is very Old West and greasy, but the environment at the restaurants and diners is just amazing; usually with live country music and tons of people clapping with every new chord.
Leaving the Route 66 and heading north to Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park just in the border Arizona-Utah is a good option to get amazed with desert-like nature. It is very advisable to spend the night in one of the few hotels in the park. From the Goulding´s Lodge or View Inn you can admire the sunrise or sunset sitting at your own terrace in the room, and from there you will be able to see the very well-known huge pinnacles of Monument Valley with this special light.
You should take your car inside the park (and pay a small fee to enter) to do the 17 mile loop dirty road inside. You can do as many stops as you want and take your time to appreciate how big and cool these rocks are. In your way you will find Navajo women selling jewelry, arrows and other Navajo instruments. People that live in the reservation are very kind and welcoming.
The only hike allowed in the reservation is the Wildcat Trail, with no shade and with and strenuous uphill way back, but absolutely worth it for a closer look to the pinnacles.
Vaipa by Paula Barros for Pplaza