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Research

38
Hours of Research
36
Articles Reviewed
27079
Reviews Compiled

Contributors

Mackenzie Nia
Lead Writer
Pouya Nia
Photographer

The Page Guide: Best Places to Eat, Play, and Stay in Page, Arizona

Published
April 16, 2020

About Page, Arizona

Page, AZ is a small town with big adventures to be had. Located right on border of Arizona and Utah, Page is only a 2 hour drive from Grand Canyon National Park, making it a popular stop for many Arizona road trips. There’s a good chance that you’ve seen pictures from Page, Arizona on your Instagram feed since this town is home to some of the most photogenic natural wonders in the state. While it’s true that Horseshoe Bend and Lower Antelope Canyon are must-visit places, there are even more things to do in Page, Arizona than just these popular sites. After spending 35 hours compiling online data investigating this town in person, we determined the best places to eat, play, and stay in Page, Arizona.

Research

38
Hours of Research
36
Articles Reviewed 
27079
Reviews Compiled

Contributors

Mackenzie Nia
Lead Writer
Pouya Nia
Photographer

Places to Eat

About

LP Espresso is a community coffee stop in downtown Page, serving Arizona-roasted coffee to the locals and visitors of this tiny town. With its rustic homey decor, LP Espresso is hard to miss amongst the businesses it shares the space with. Offering classic espresso and tea drinks, you’re sure to find your caffeine-fix of choice at LP Espresso. Did I mention the pastries?! Keep reading

The Research

There are plenty of restaurants and gas stations where you can find your standard cup of coffee. However, if you're looking for a dedicated coffee shop, this is the only one in town! That's no reason to recommend something though. LP Espresso has strong ratings from its customers and its business hours make it the perfect place to grab a cup and share some good conversation. After our visit and field evaluations, we are confident in recommending LP Espresso.

Our Experience

When we arrived at LP Espresso, we made our way to the middle of the building to find this quaint coffee shop positioned between a tour company and wine bar. Given the setting, it was surprisingly cozy and inviting. We ordered lattes and fresh pastries (pumpkin bread and bread pudding) to enjoy in this cute shop. The beans were roasted darker than we usually have a taste for, but we enjoyed our drinks regardless. The pumpkin bread and bread pudding were both moist and rich in flavor, leaving us satisfied and ready to start our adventurous day.  

Tips & Recommendations

If you typically get your coffee from third-wave specialty coffee shops, LP Espresso might not live up to your expectations. The beans used at LP Espresso, at least when we visited, are a darker roast which is less customary for specialty coffee shops. Regardless, LP Espresso is clearly the best option for coffee in Page, and we still enjoyed our lattes even though we typically prefer lighter roasts.

The Competition

Even though there are not any other coffee shops in Page, Blue Wine & Coffee Bar, a bar that serves both wine and coffee, is the main competitor to LP Espresso. However, Blue Wine & Coffee Bar is only open in the evening so it would not suffice for your morning coffee run. Also, many hotels in Page serve a free continental breakfast, so some coffee drinkers may choose to drink the free coffee provided by their hotel.

About

Big John’s BBQ was founded to bring authentic Texas BBQ to Arizona, which was unheard of in 2006 when it first opened. Today, Big John’s BBQ attracts locals and tourists alike, all coming together to enjoy this unique spot. Big John’s BBQ is located in the center of town and gives customers the option to dine inside in booths, outside on picnic tables next to the smoker, or take their food to go. With its unmatched number of customer reviews, it is evident that Big John’s BBQ is a must-visit restaurant for anyone visiting Page.

The Research

There are over 10 restaurants in Page with exceptional customer reviews that were contenders for this guide, but Big John’s BBQ immediately stood out in our data collection process due to the sheer quantity of reviews it has. To put it in perspective, Big John’s BBQ has about 200% more online reviews than the average number of reviews for all the restaurants we were considering for our guide. It was also mentioned in 3 out of the 7 articles we found about food in Page, which is more than any other restaurant. Even with all of the data in its favor, we still visited Big John’s BBQ to determine that it was the best restaurant for most people.  

Our Experience

We visited Big John’s BBQ on a crisp November afternoon, but decided to sit outside since the patio is lined with propane heaters. We appreciated that Big John’s BBQ offered different seating options—including inside seating for guests who wanted something more formal and comfortable, and outdoor seating that was more casual and communal. The staff at Big John’s was exceptionally friendly and brought the food out promptly. Get ready to be transported to the south and treated to some authentic hospitality and delicious BBQ. It was clear to us why Big John’s BBQ was raved about online by many visitors.

Tips & Recommendations

Like many restaurants in Page, Big John’s BBQ closes for the winter (December and January)! You won’t be able to eat here, or many other restaurants, if you visit Page in these winter months. Solution? Visit our “Best Sport Bar” pick for year-round service.

The Competition

The strongest competitor to Big John’s BBQ is Birdhouse, a fried chicken restaurant with some of the best reviews we saw online—even though it is still fairly new to town. However, it was closed on the day we visited, despite it being listed as “open” online. To make matters even more confusing, a calendar was posted on their door which marked sporadic days of the month that they would be open, with our visit days as one of them. Unfortunately this information was not available online. We thought that sporadic closures (unlike Big John’s which was very clear and listed online) that were not listed online made Birdhouse not the best option for most people. However, the food looked delicious in pictures, so we hope that as they mature as a business, the disqualifiers will be ironed out.

About

State 48 Tavern is both a restaurant and a sports bar which are distinctly split on opposing sides of the restaurant. The restaurant side of the State 48 Tavern is classier and quieter, while the sport’s bar side is a bit louder and grungier. The sports bar has dining tables in addition to bar seating which means guests don’t necessarily have to sit at the bar to have their meal in this atmosphere. Their menu offers creatively crafted dishes at a higher quality than what you usually get at a sports bar. While most restaurants close for the winter in Page, State 48 Tavern stays open all year for guests visiting in the winter.

The Research

While it was easy to narrow down our choice for best restaurant overall, our second choice was a bit trickier since we wanted to include an option that was open all year. This required us to call and show up to quite a few restaurants to figure out if the close for the winter, since we learned that this is very common in Page. State 48 Tavern ranked the highest on our data points out of the restaurants that remain open in the winter.

Our Experience

We were a bit skeptical of State 48 Tavern at first since sports bars typically don’t have the best food. Regardless, we were eager to give it a shot since it had excellent reviews and mouth-watering photos of their food! Not only did the food present unique flavor combinations, but it was plated beautifully to match the care put into crafting the food dishes. We sat in the sports bar area because we arrived before dinner time, which is when they opened the more intimate and higher class restaurant space. Next time we look forward to sitting on the other side of the restaurant which is separated from the bar and TVs. Our biggest complaint about State 48 Tavern was the bathroom, which did not accurately reflect the level of care they put into their service and food.

Tips & Recommendations

Make sure you sit on the side of the restaurant that best fits your preferences. If you want the sports bar experience, the right side of the restaurant is where you want to go. However, if you want a more relaxing, sit-down dining experience, the left side of the restaurant is better suited for that. You should note that the restaurant side was only open for dinner during our visit. Though we can see this changing based on the number of guests.

The Competition

El Tapatio is a Mexican restaurant that is a strong competitor to State 48 Tavern, as both offer dining with a full bar and are almost indistinguishable between their online ratings. Even though El Tapatio is a great option, we liked that State 48 Tavern had a clean split between it’s bar area and restaurant, making it more versatile and therefore a better option for most people.

Places to Play

About

Lower Antelope Canyon is one of the most popular slot canyons in Page, attracting visitors year-round. A slot canyon is a narrow and deep canyon located beneath the ground that is created by erosion due to flash floods, which means they are always changing with every new flood. The slot canyons in Page are made of sandstone and are famous for their bright red canyon walls that become illuminated in the sun. Lower Antelope Canyon, like all slot canyons in Page, is only accessible by tour, which means visitors cannot enter the canyon without a reservation and tour guide. There are two touring companies, Ken’s Tours and Dixie Ellis’ Lower Antelope Canyon Tours, that offer tours of Lower Antelope Canyon; both tours are the same price (around $50), have high ratings, and offer nearly an identical experience. We did our tour with Ken’s Tours since it was recommended more than Dixie Ellis in articles about Page and had the time slot available that we wanted.

The Research

As we did our research on Page, it became clear that its slot canyons are a huge draw for tourists due to their natural wonder and being undeniable photogenic. Knowing that slot canyons are one of the most popular activities in Page, we were determined to find the best one for most visitors. After reading 30 articles about things to do in Page and cross referencing these activities with online reviews, Lower Antelope Canyon was a strong contender for our guide with over 20 article mentions and remarkably high internet hype. With most slot canyon tours costing between $40-$60 dollars, the Lower Antelope Canyon Tours are comparable to other slot canyons, which doesn’t give any slot canyon an edge over another when considering price. However, some may dislike that Lower Antelope Canyon is more crowded and touristy, which may sway them towards the less crowded slot canyon as described in “The Competition”.

Our Experience

We arrived to Ken’s Tours at our check-in time (30 minutes before our tour) and waited inside for our tour group number to be called. Once we met up with our tour guide, he took us and the rest of our tour group (8 of us total) to the entrance of Lower Antelope Canyon. The slot canyon is located underground and is only accessible by 6 flights of rather steep stairs which creates a natural bottleneck for groups waiting to enter. We only had to wait in line for about 5 minutes, but the guide informed us that visitors can wait in line for over an hour in the Summer season. We spent about an hour walking through the canyon led by our tour guide, who told us the history of how the canyon was formed and showed us where all the best photo opportunities were. There were many tours that go through Lower Antelope Canyon all day, and they all have to go one at a time due to the narrow canyons. This meant that we didn’t have the time to explore and take pictures at our leisure since there was always another group behind us, making it feel slightly rushed. Regardless, Lower Antelope Canyon was unlike anything we had ever explored, making it a fun and exciting experience.

Tips & Recommendations

Be careful when visiting Lower Antelope Canyon in the summer. Between the large summer crowds and the bottlenecked entrance to the canyon, wait times can exceed an hour in the summer heat, risking dehydration and heatstroke. If you want the best lighting in the canyon, you’ll want to schedule your tour at around noon when the sun is directly above and shines into the canyon.

The Competition

Upper Antelope Canyon is also very popular and is located right across the street from Lower Antelope Canyon. Unlike Lower Antelope Canyon which is narrow at the bottom and wide at the top, Upper Antelope Canyon is the opposite. The wider canyon floors do make it easier to get around, but the narrow openings at the top means there is less light entering the slot—which ultimately means your pictures may suffer.  To top it off, tours of Upper Antelope Canyon are around $15 more expensive than Lower Antelope Canyon. However, you may prefer Upper Antelope Canyon if you are less fond of tights spaces, or if you simply prefer the look of the wider canyon floor.

About

Horseshoe Bend, as its name suggests, is a horseshoe-shaped canyon that the Colorado River flows through—creating a stunning and unusual lookout point. To get to the Horseshoe Bend lookout area, you’ll have to hike about half a mile each way to get to where you can actually view the canyon. No rush beating the crowd to the lookout point—Horseshoe Bend provides many different vantage points, giving it a large capacity for visitors. The trailhead is on city property, so be prepared to pay a parking fee of $10 for visiting Horseshoe Bend.

The Research

When it comes to activities in Page, Horseshoe Bend takes first place as the most mentioned and reviewed attraction. In fact, it was mentioned in 28 of the 30 articles that we read about activities in Page! As if that data isn’t impressive enough, Horseshoe Bend has the most online reviews and highest ratings of all the activities we’ve mentioned in this article. Our data points leave little room to hate this majestic canyon, making Horseshoe Bend the star winner and a can't-miss, must-visit location on any trip to Page and for any Instagram feed.

Our Experience

We visited Horseshoe Bend in the late afternoon along with many others starting the hike around the same time. A fairly easy hike will quickly lead you down to the grand cliffs facing the bend. Unassuming and almost unidentifiable during hike, the canyon only reveals its awe and wonder to those who reach the very end. Having seen countless pictures of Horseshoe Bend still did not do it justice! Words cannot describe the sheer size and depth of the breathtaking phenomenon. The lookout area spans the length of the cliff so there is plenty of room for everyone to look out and take pictures. It was nice knowing that our parking was valid until the end of the day so we could spend as much time as possible enjoying the different vantage points, snapping photos, and spending time together in the backdrop of this grand landmark.

Tips & Recommendations

Don’t shy away from asking someone to take your picture. It’s common etiquette to ask someone to take your picture and offer to take theirs in return. Also, be mindful that there are very few railings at Horseshoe Bend, so please use discretion when viewing and posing for pictures. There are plenty of great perspectives that don’t require you to dangle your feet off the edge. It’s really not worth the ‘gram!

The Competition

Wahweap Overlook is another popular lookout point in Page, offering an overhead view of both Lake Powell and Wahweap Bay. This lookout is especially nice if you are looking for an easy and relaxing activity because it doesn’t require any hiking—instead, you can park right at the top of the lookout point. Regardless, Wahweap Overlook simply doesn’t compare to the grandeur of Horseshoe Bend, which we think is worth the hike.

About

Glen Canyon National Recreation Area is protected land run by the National Park Service that cradles the border of Arizona and Utah. While a majority of Glen Canyon National Recreation Area’s land is on the Utah side, our guide is covering the section of recreation area that is accessible from Page—specifically the area surrounding Lake Powell. From boating to camping to sightseeing, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area is an adventurous and beautiful place to explore. Depending on where you go inside Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, you may have to pay the $30 entrance fee or show your National Parks Pass. The Carl Hayden Visitor Center has a large museum, gift shop, and—most notably— one of the best views of the Glen Canyon Dam.

The Research

As we read articles about the top things to do in Page, Arizona, we soon realized that several of the top recommended activities are located in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area—including visiting Lake Powell, viewing the Glen Canyon Dam, and exploring the Carl Hayden Visitor Center. Even our choice for best campground is located inside the recreation area! With all of these activities so highly recommended, it became evident that Glen Canyon National Recreation Area was the place to visit in Page.

Our Experience

Our first stop at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area was the Carl Hayden Visitor Center. This visitor center is large compared to some other National Park Service sites we have been to, and we especially enjoyed the unique educational displays in their museum. However, the star of the visitor center are the panoramic windows which give an incredible view of Glen Canyon Dam. There is also a lookout deck right outside the visitor center with an even better view. Next, we drove down Lake Shore Drive, a scenic road running adjacent to Lake Powell with many places to pull off and enjoy the view. This is the part of the recreation area that requires an entrance fee, so be prepared! Finally, we drove down a gravel road that took us to a part of Glen Canyon that had beach access and lots of fun rocks to climb. The road to this area doesn’t have a name, but it’s accessible from a turn out on Highway 89, a half mile east of Glen Canyon Dam Bridge (36°56'02.1"N, 111°28'30.6"W). This was our favorite area that we explored in Glen Canyon because we had free reign to climb and wander.

Tips & Recommendations

If you want to do any tours or excursions, be sure to book ahead of time and plan to spend a whole day at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area instead of a few hours like we did. Information on guided tours in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area can be found here.

The Competition

The Rim View Trail is a beautiful, 9.8-mile trail that circles Page and boasts of an incredible view of Lake Powell. Hikers can get a decent view of Lake Powell from the Rim View Trail, but there are much better views inside Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, many of which don’t require an entrance fee. If you’re looking to take in the beauty of Lake Powell, you can do this from many places in Page but the best views are in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area.  

The Powell Museum rivals the Carl Hayden Visitor Center since both have historical and geological exhibits about Page and Lake Powell. Both provide visitors with great learning opportunities, but the Carl Hayden Visitor Center (inside Glen Canyon National Recreation Area) is open daily, while the Powell Museum is only open on the weekends, making it less accessible to visitors.

Places to Stay

About

Country Inn and Suites is a budget to mid-range hotel located in Page, Arizona. Offering a complimentary hot breakfast, gym, pool, and free cookies, coffee, and tea around the clock, Country Inn and Suites is a great home base for your trip to Page. Rooms at Country Inn and Suites start at around $95 on weekdays in the winter, but can go up quite a bit in price on the weekends and in spring, summer, and fall.

The Research

We analyzed the data on all of the hotels in Page, including customer reviews, amenities, and price, along with the “feel” of the hotel according to their pictures. Out of the 15 hotels we considered, we eliminated 6 on the onset due to something off-putting we found during our research—like the inability to reserve online or simply not looking as nice as our other options. With the 9 remaining hotels, most had similar ratings and price ranges so we looked to amenities and article recommendations to make our final choice. Out of the hotels that served a complimentary breakfast, Country Inn and Suites was one of the few that served a hot breakfast. It was also mentioned the most in articles written about lodging in Page.

Our Experience

We stayed at Country Inn and Suites for one night during our trip to Page, Arizona. Our room was impressive with its tall ceilings and top-of-the-line decor, and we felt at home right away. Breakfast opened promptly at 7AM the following morning, and was equipped with a solid mixture of typical continental breakfast staples, along with hot ingredients intended to make a breakfast sandwich. For only $110 per night, we felt like this hotel was a steal, though this price and even lower are typical in Page during this time of year.

Tips & Recommendations

The lobby of Country Inn and Suites is especially cozy and has two living areas with TVs for guests. If you’re going to be staying in for the night, you can eat your dinner in one of these lounge areas or simply enjoy the complimentary tea and coffee. If you want to change the channel, just ask the front desk.

The Competition

Baymont by Wyndham is also a great option, offering pretty much the same amenities as Country Inn and Suites with just about the same customer reviews. We felt that Country Inn had a slight edge in quality, but we’d happily stay at Baymont if Country Inn was not an option, or if there was a significant price different. We also liked La Quinta by Wyndham, which was also a very similar hotel. However, their breakfast was continental, not hot, which gave Country Inn and Suites a slight edge.

About

Wahweap RV & Campground is located right off of Lake Powell, offering a serene camping experience for RV and tent campers alike. These camp sites are located on a hill that cascades up, giving most sites a great view of Lake Powell. Unlike many campgrounds, Wahweap RV & Campground has a camp store, selling an array of food, supplies, and even souvenirs. In addition to the camp store, Wahweap RV & Campground has laundry services and showers, providing an even more comfortable experience for campers. This campground is open all year and is booked pretty far in advance during the warmer months. Sites at Wahweap RV & Campground start at $30 for tent sites and $68 for RV sites, and campers will also have to pay the $30 entrance fee to Glen Canyon National Recreation Area (or show their National Parks Annual Pass).

The Research

According to our research, there are are two campgrounds that are easily accessible by car, meaning that campers do not have to hike or backpack to reach the sites. We eliminated the other campgrounds in Page from the running for best campground because they are either not easily accessible or are not available all year. Overall, Wahweap RV & Campground had the strongest online reviews and stand-out amenities, making it a clear choice over the competition.

Our Experience

We didn’t stay in Wahweap RV & Campground during our trip to Page, but since the campground was largely vacant due to the cold weather, we were able to freely explore and investigate without disturbing other campers. We loved that this campground was set on a hill, which means that most sites had a great view of Lake Powell. The camp store was pretty big and added an element of luxury to Wahweap RV & Campground.

Tips & Recommendations

Out of all of the sites, we found that site 10 had the best view out of all the RV spots. For tent campers, we liked site 98 which also had a great view and had more space since it was located on the curve of the loop. Wahweap RV & Campground is located inside Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, so be prepared to pay the $30 entrance fee, or bring your National Parks pass!

The Competition

The main competitor for Wahweap RV & Campground was Page Lake Powell Campground. While its name indicates that it’s located near Lake Powell, campers actually have to drive about 10 minutes to get Lake Powell from this campground. We chose Wahweap RV & Campground due to its superior views, customer ratings, and extravagant camp store, but Page Lake Powell Campground is another good option if Wahweap is full, or if you don’t want to camp inside a National Park Service site.

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