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The Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument is located less than 20 miles north and east of Flagstaff, AZ, which is in the north-central portion of the state. This is one of the larger towns in the local area. The next closest, larger, city is also the state's capital, Phoenix, at more than 150 miles to the south.
Outside of the larger cities, this part of the country is quite rural. Unlike the drier, desert regions found in the southern portion of the state, this area is far greener, consisting mostly of pine-covered mountains. The park offers many fun activities to enjoy, from hiking trails and ranger programs to historical sites and stargazing. There's something fun for everyone in this part of the country!
Renting an RV at this park will allow you to enjoy all the outdoor activities available nearby. There are a number of hiking trails at Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument. They vary in how long and difficult they are. Some of the harder ones traverse local mountains while the easier options stick more to the forest floor. Many of these also take visitors through old lava fields. These remain from when the extinct volcanoes that the park was named for were active.
The Coconino National Forest is found near the park. There are fun activities available here throughout the year. During the summer, there are hiking, biking, horseback riding, and camping options. Scenic drives are offered, as well. During the winter, this mountainous part of the state actually receives snowfall, so you can participate in activities such as snowshoeing. Some of the local roads can also be used by snowmobilers if the snow level is deep enough.
There are a number of ranger-led activities available in the park. These include guided hikes into the backcountry that offer in-depth information on the geology of the area, as well as the animals and plants that live here. For people who may not be up for a lengthy hike, there are also educational programs and exhibits offered at the park's amphitheater and visitor center. Some of these also give the history of the ancient people who first settled in this wild land, thousands of years ago.
There are no options for camping with an RV within Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument itself. However, there is a national forest campground located just outside the park boundaries, as well as plenty of other RV parks situated closer to town.
Bonito Campground is managed by the National Forest Service and is found very near the park's visitor center. These types of camping options are usually quite rustic, often offering only bathrooms and potable water. Reservations are not available here, so the sites are distributed on a first-come-first-served basis. This campground is also not open during the winter months.
J and H RV Park is in town. This campground offers WiFi, bathrooms, a laundry facility, and showers. There is also a small store, on-site, and the camp can accommodate both short and lengthy reservations. As there is so much to do in this area, many people enjoy RV camping near the Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument, so any services you need should be easy to find.
When you book an RV in Coconino County, you will find many unique places to visit nearby. This part of the country was originally settled by American Indian tribes. You can learn about these ancient cultures at several nearby locations. At the Elden Pueblo, you can view the ruins of some structures that were built by these tribes. The Wupatki National Monument is another archeological site where you can learn about these ancient people. National Monument RV camping makes it easy to explore these and other local attractions.
There are many museums in Flagstaff for you to learn about this area. The Pioneer Museum and Museum of Northern Arizona focus on the history and cultures that have shaped this region. The Fort Tuthill Military Museum features details of the nation's military dating back to the 1860s. Some guided tours are also available. This attraction is part of a park, so those grounds can be explored, as well.
There are also several historical sites found locally. There are self-guided walking tours available from the town's visitor center of the Historic Downtown and Railroad District. This area features many buildings from the earliest days after the town was established. At the Riordan Mansion State Historic Park, you can tour an old mansion built in the early 1900s and the grounds surrounding it. Another unique find is the Lowell Observatory that highlights the night sky. This area is known for its stargazing opportunities due to its elevation and low levels of light pollution.
When you've been looking for a fun, scenic place to visit that offers a wide variety of activities to enjoy, consider camping at the Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument. Go for a hike through some lava fields, tour the remains of an ancient culture, or take a scenic drive through a local forest. Camp in an RV near Flagstaff, AZ, and enjoy your time in northern Arizona.