Last October, I finally got to visit the most magical place on Earth: Havasu Falls in Arizona. I was sold on going from the moment I saw a video of turquoise blue waterfalls plummeting deep down in the Grand Canyon. I’ve never seen anything more beautiful in my life, and I want to share with you everything I know on how to plan a visit here. The journey wasn’t easy but it was WORTH IT. There is a lot involved in paying this beautiful oasis a visit, and I have to admit it was one of the hardest vacations I have ever planned. I believe it is a once in a lifetime trip and if you’re thinking about going here, DO IT. You will not regret it, I promise! Make sure you subscribe to my blog below for a detailed packing list I will be sending out in the next month.

Where is Havasu Falls

Havasu Falls is located in the Havasu Canyon, home to the Havasupai Indian Tribe whose name is translated to “people of the blue green water.” There is some confusion on how to get there. Havasu is its own location, it’s not considered the North Rim or the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. You will need to purchase permits from the Havasupai Tribe that lives and owns the land in this part of the Grand Canyon. There are 5 waterfalls in the Havasu Canyon: Havasu Falls, Mooney Falls, Beaver Falls, Fifty Foot Falls, & Navajo Falls. Havasu Falls is the most popular waterfall within the canyon, but the other four are equally as beautiful and unique. There is also the option to hike to Confluence, where the Colorado River meets Havasu Creek!

Scoring Permits

February 1st is the day permits go on sale, 8 AM Arizona time. Make sure you don’t miss it! That’s 7 AM Pacific time & 10 AM Eastern time. My first tip to you is to go on their website and register for an account login PRIOR to February 1st. This will ensure all of your information is in the system and you’ll have a better chance at scoring permits for the dates you want. Permits sell out FAST within minutes so you must do this in order to get through checkout fast enough. Make sure you input the credit card you will be using for all charges when registering so it is on file for when you checkout.

One person (trip leader) will want to buy permits for your entire group and you can only use one credit or debit card on your reservation. Campground reservations are priced per person and you can include up to 12 people in total per camping reservation. Make sure you list alternative trip leaders in your account setup because of the trip leader can’t make it to Havasupai, the reservation name can be transferred to another alternative trip leader listed free of charge. Just keep in mind that once a reservation has been made, you can’t make changes to that list so make sure you have it right before you reserve. 

You cannot make a camping reservation over the phone. The only way to make a camping reservation is on havasupaireservations.com.

It took me two hours on the website to finally get permits. My advice to you is don’t give up. Obsessively keep going in and starting over when the website crashes for your dates, because it will probably do so again this year like it did to me last year. I must have tried 15 times in those two hours before I finally scored permits! They weren’t the dates I wanted but close enough. If you are impatient, you should have someone else try to get the permits in your group because patience is key.

Camping or Lodge

There are two options for visiting Havasu Canyon: Camping or Lodge. The online reservation system that opens up February 1st is for making a camping reservation. You can only make a lodge reservation over the phone. You have a much better chance of getting a camping reservation than staying at the lodge.

The website has not yet been updated for pricing for 2020, but in 2019 the prices for camping were $100 per person per weekday night and $125 per person per weekend night (Friday, Saturday, Sunday nights). This includes all taxes and fees. You MUST buy a 3 night stay, no more or no less. This means that a 3 Night / 4 Day stay will be a total of between $300 and $375 per person (depending upon how many weekend nights are included). Prices are subject to change according to the Havasupai website.

Lodge Reservations become available on June 1st. The cost for the lodge last year was $440 per room per night and rooms can accommodate up to 4 people. A $110 entrance/environmental fee is charged per person in addition to this, but all of these prices are subject to change this year. There are only 24 rooms available and they tend to book up really quick. The tricky part about getting a lodge reservation is that you can only make one over the phone, whereas camping reservations can only be made online. All Lodge reservations are made by calling (928)448-2111 or (928)448-2201. These phone numbers are for the Lodge ONLY and when I tried calling I couldn’t get through to anyone. You may have better luck than I did, but I truly believe you should plan on camping.

Can anyone in your group check-in at Havasupai

No. There is only on trip leader per reservation and a reservation is only valid if the trip leader is present at the Tourist Check-in Office in the Village of Supai (on the way to the campground) with photo ID. If that person is not present, then the reservation will not be honored. Essentially you will be screwed out of proceeding to the campground and will have to turn around. This is why its important to list alternative trip leaders in your reservation, and I believe you can list them in your account before you go on to buy permits. Everybody in your party should have their state ID or passport with them and I also recommend bringing your medical card if you have one.

ALL visitors (even if they are not a Trip Leader) must have an account created on HavasupaiReservations.com PRIOR to arrival so that they have confirmed their understanding of, and agreement with, Havasupai Rules and Laws. On their website it says ALL visitors must have proof of their account (a printout or screenshot of their Account Information Page), proof of their Campground Reservation (a printout or screenshot of the Campground Reservation that they are visiting under), and their photo ID available at all times while on Havasupai lands. I also reccommend that everyone brings their medical insurance cards & travel insurance papers if purchased.

Pack Mules: Should you reserve one

When you make your reservation online, you will notice that there’s an option to add a pack mule for $400 total. I remember it saying “become waitlisted for a pack mule.” I didn’t realize there would be an option for this so I added it to our reservation thinking I’d be notified whether or not we would be able to add that to our reservation later. A few months down the road my credit card was instantly charged for this pack mule. So what did we sign up for? A mule to carry up to 4 of our bags with a maximum weight of 32 pounds per bag. The maximum baggage size had to be 36 inches long, 19 inches wide, 19 inches tall. It also had to be a soft duffel without wheels. We threw our duffels into large laundry bags for added protection from dirt and the mule. You drop your bags off at the start of the trailhead and they are transported 10 miles to the campground.

There has been a lot of controversy over these mules which I didn’t realize when I added one to our reservation. Many animal rights advocates advise people against using them because has been reported that they were mistreated in the past. The Havasupai Tribe took these claims to heart and have significantly changed the way they operate their mule transport and tightened the rules on weight in order to prevent any claims of abuse.

All of the pack mules we saw on the trail seemed very well attended to and happy. We didn’t witness any animal abuse and the tribe relies heavily on these mules to transport everything from mail to packaged goods to their village. We kept our bags way under the weight limit and only put our tents and sleeping bags in the duffels. My honest opinion is don’t add a pack mule to your reservation. Save yourself the $400 and backpack everything into camp. There are many services out there to rent everything from backpacks to lightweight tents & sleeping bags which I will discuss further into this post. You will feel way more accomplished bringing everything without the use of a mule and it’ll force you to pack less of things that are unnecessary.

Best time to visit Havasu Falls

One of the biggest decisions of your trip will be what time of year to go. I would say the best time to visit Havasu Falls is either early spring or late autumn. After speaking to locals, I was told that October is the absolute perfect time to visit Arizona because the weather is just right. In my opinion, late May or early October would be best. If you decide to go in the summer, it will still be enjoyable and the best swimming weather however you will want to start your hike in and out SUPER early to avoid the heat.

July, August, and September fall under monsoon season, and that brings unpredictable rainstorms. I avoided making reservations for these months for this reason. It is quite scary and dangerous to be stuck in the Canyon if a monsoon was to strike and I didn’t want to take that chance. Its also SUPER hot in Arizona those months. You really need to start your hike as early as possible to beat the heat.

You should be very flexible on when to visit the falls because reservations go QUICK. We ended up with reservations for late October even though I wanted beginning. Even though it was late October, I still spent my days in shorts and my bathing suit swimming in the falls. The weather stays roughly 70 degrees year round, so you don’t have to worry about the falls freezing over any time of the year.

Hotels to stay in before and after your hike

Our first two days we stayed in Vegas and turned it into a mini vacation. We had many options for cheap hotel rooms, and I was able to get us comped rooms at the Luxor Casino playing the MyVegas slot app for weeks on my phone (free to play). You can win comped rooms for certain dates! We left Vegas and had reservations at the Hualapai Lodge the night before our hike, which is the closest hotel to the trailhead. It’s located about 70 miles from the start of the trail. We really liked our hotel room, it was simple but very clean. The food at the restaurant hotel was very good as well. Grand Caverns Canyon Inn is another hotel close to the start of the trail. I recommend booking hotel rooms at one of these two hotels for the night before your hike and possibly the night after depending on your flight. We only stayed the night before, but we were all exhausted driving 4 hours back to Vegas after our hike. It would have been nice to just sleep and relax at that hotel. Make sure you book a room as soon as you know your dates for Havasupai so you don’t run the risk of them selling out.

How to get to the Havasupai Trailhead

The Havasu Falls trailhead is located at Hualapai Hilltop. Click here for detailed directions depending on which airport you’re coming from. You have two options of getting here: Fly into Las Vegas or fly into Phoenix. If you fly into Vegas, you will be 4 hours away from the trailhead as opposed to 5 hours from Phoenix. We chose to fly into Vegas because it was closer and we wanted to do some exploring in Vegas.

If you’re coming in from Las Vegas, take 93 South towards Kingman, Arizona and then head east on Route 66. After about 57 miles, you will turn left on Indian Road 18. After driving for approximately 60 miles, you will reach the end of the road. Before this, you will be stopped at a checkpoint where you must have confirmation of your reservation along with an ID or passport. Your car will be searched for any items strictly prohibited from Havasupai. That includes alcohol, drugs & drones. For a full list of items prohibited, check HavasupaiReservations.com.

Once you get to the trailhead, you will see a large parking lot with bathrooms at the start of the trail. There is also a place to camp just below the bathrooms, but there is no water at the trailhead. Keep this in mind because you will not be able to fill your hydration bags with water at the trailhead. Plan to do this before back at your hotel or at a convenience store on your way to the trailhead. Peach Springs, Arizona is the nearest town to the trailhead with things like gas, food, and water.

What time should you start your hike

The 8 mile section of trail between the Hilltop Trailhead and the Village of Supai is closed each night between sunset and 4:00 a.m. Our goal was to be at the trailhead by 6am to start our hike, so we left the hotel at 4:45 AM. The drive from the Hualapai Lodge to the parking lot for Hualapai Hilltop is an hour and 15 minutes. We ended up starting at 7am because of check in and having our car searched before being allowed to drive to the parking lot for the trailhead. I reccomend getting up as early as possible and getting to your lodge closest to the trailhead as early as you can the night before. Get some rest, you are going to need the energy for your 10 mile hike in. Make sure you don’t bring any alcohol in your car and no drones allowed. Your car will be searched and alcohol will be confiscated if found.

How hard is the hike

The hike to Havasupai campground is 20 miles (32 km) roundtrip from the Hilltop Trailhead in/down to the Campground entrance and then back out/up to the Hilltop Trailhead. As per the Havasupai Reservations website, it’s described as a rocky and sandy desert trail with a total roundtrip elevation change of nearly one mile. That is TWO Empire State Buildings (meaning it is like climbing down the Empire State Building from the top to the bottom TWICE in a row – and then doing the same thing back up).

For us, the hike to the campground was relatively easy just very LONG. We had hiking sticks and plenty of water in our hydration packs, and most of us conditioned and ran at the gym to build endurance. When you first start your hike, you are walking downhill the entire time. That first section of the hike is the hardest when you’re hiking BACK from your trip. It is a STEEP incline with switchbacks when you’re coming back. As much as you don’t want to leave the campground early your final day, you absolutely should leave AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE. Buy your souveniers at the Village shop when you first hike into Havasupai so you don’t get sucked in there when you’re leaving like we did. It started getting hot on our hike back right as we were approaching the switchbacks, which was pretty brutal on us. It wouldn’t have been as bad if the sun wasn’t out in full force.

Can you get there by helicopter

There is Helicopter travel provided by Airwest Helicopters, but it is weather dependent and runs on a scheudule only on certain days. Cost for a helicopter ride into the canyon is $85 per person each way. Each person is allowed 1 carry-on bag. Any additional luggage is charged by the weight. Children 2 years and younger fly free. You cannot make reservations for the helicopter prior to your visit. The way to try and get in by helicopter is to show up at the Hualapai Hilltop and sign in before 10am. The Native Americans receive priority boarding, so you may be waiting in line for hours before possibly being put on a helicopter. Tourists are boarded on a first come, first served basis & it takes about 15 minutes to fly from Havasupai Hilltop to the Supai village. You will still need to hike 2+ miles from the village in order to see any of the waterfalls. For more information, call Airwest Helicopters (623) 516- 2790.

Last I checked, the schedule for the helicopter was as follows:

March 15 to October 15

  • Sunday: 10 am to 1pm*
  • Monday: 10 am to 1pm*
  • Thursday: 10 am to 1pm*
  • Friday: 10 am to 1pm*

October 16 to March 14:

  • Sunday: 10 am to 1pm*
  • Friday: 10 am to 1pm*

As we were leaving Havasupai, we spoke to a few people waiting for the helicopter who said they’ve been waiting for at least 5 hours and still haven’t gotten on one. Be prepared to patiently wait for a helicopter if you choose to leave the canyon this way. I would also recommend having your carry-on be a backpack that you can hike out with even if you plan on taking the helicopter, just in case you can’t get on one.

Should you bring money to Havasupai

I say yes. Make sure you take cash with you to Havasupai in addition to credit/debit cards. The convenience store accepts cards, but if the electric was to go out you want to be prepared with cash on you. I brought enough money to cover a helicopter ride as well which is $85, just in case I had to leave the Canyon for whatever reason quickly. The natives sell yummy Indian bread and sodas at little stands throughout the reservation that you can only purchase with cash. The Indian bread was so delicious!! The stands aren’t always open but most days you are able to buy some. I personally brought $300 cash with me on this trip. You can bring more or less depending on your circumstances.

Do you need a rental car for the trip

I say yes you will need a car to drive yourself to the trailhead. There is no bus transportation to the Hualapai Hilltop Trailhead and the drive from Vegas or Phoenix will take 4-5 hours. We kept everything we didn’t bring on our hike in our trunk and had no issues. There were no break-ins that we heard of at the parking lot and there is an office there that is open every morning with bathrooms. The parking lot seems to be very safe, you are even allowed to camp there before you start your hike. I’m not sure whether you’d have to arrive after midnight though the day your reservation starts in order to be able to do this. Something to keep in mind. One place to check for car rentals is www.carrentals.com. This is what I use whenever I travel.

Can you cancel your Havasupai Reservation

Reservations are paid in full at the time of purchase and are non-refundable. You can’t change the dates on your reservation either. There is one way to transfer your permits if you are unable to go for whatever reason, but the only way to do so is through the Official Transfer System at HavasupaiReservations.com. When you first register for an account, make sure you add all of the people in your party to the reservation as alternate trip leaders. It helps with the transfer process if your original trip leader doesn’t end up going.

Are there bathrooms at the campground

There are two well maintained bathrooms on either side of the campground, but no showers. Don’t let this scare you, there are many ways around this if you’re like me and shower almost every day. They make body wipes for camping, which is basically a shower in a wipe. We hung up a sheet and made our own mini changing and “shower” station. You cannot put chemicals into the water at Havasupai. I can’t stress enough that you may not use any soaps even if they are biodegradable. You can fill a collapsible bucket with water and rinse yourself off with biodegradable soap as long as you’re at least 200 feet away from a body of water due to environmental reasons. This will be kind of hard because you are surrounded by water at the campsite, so just buy body wipes! The bathrooms have plenty of toilet paper, but they say to bring wipes just in case they run out.

Is there water at the campground

There is fresh water once you reach your campground at the fern spring, but make sure to fill your hydration packs BEFORE you get to the trailhead for your hike. We had 3-liter hydration packs and drank almost all of that water on our hike in. You can fill them at your hotel or the town of Peach Springs the night before your hike. There is no water station at the start of the hike & none on the trail until you’ve hiked 8 miles to the Havasupai village. Once you’ve make it to the campground which is another 2 miles from the Village, there will be a freshwater spring that you call use whenever. We also had life straw water bottles that filters water just in case. It was so clean that most people didn’t have these, but for emergency purposes we made sure to buy them. If you want to be on the safe side, then you may filter your water using life straw or any other filtration product available on the market.

Should you purchase travel insurance

I say yes. I bought my travel insurance from Travel Guard & because I have Insurance coverage already I only purchased the option that gave me security evacuation coverage. The reason I got this was because god forbid anything happens in the Canyon, there is only one way out and thats by helicopter. This was the exact coverage recommended to me through another forum I found, and if you don’t already have medical insurance you may want to see what other coverage options you may need. If you do have insurance, call them and check your Emergency evacuation coverage.

Do you keep the same campsite all 4 days

There is no designated camping spot per group, so you are free to camp whenever and move if you’d like. When you first arrive to the campsite, you may notice that a lot of the prime spots are taken. You can set up camp whenever, and then when certain people leave the following day you can snag a different camp spot. Once you set up camp, plan on staying in one spot. This will be your home base after every hike. We noticed that the further we walked down the campground, the better the camping spots got. We planned on moving our spot after day one but decided against it after how much work it took to set up our canpsite.

Regulations for Havasupai:

Be respectful and follow the rules when visiting Havasupai. There is:

  • NO cliff jumping allowed
  • NO rock climbing
  • NO alcohol/drugs/smoking
  • NO littering
  • NO drones
  • NO nudity or inappropriate clothing
  • NO photos allowed in the village or of the Natives
  • NO harsh chemicals allowed in the water (soaps, shampoo etc.)
  • NO pets allowed
  • NO feeding animals on the reservation
  • NO taking rocks as souveniers from the Grand Canyon

Everything you pack in, you MUST pack out. We were disgusted by the amount of trash we saw people leave behind. If you have leftover food, you can ask other campers if they’d like to have some. People were happy to get our leftover food and fuel canisters. Respect nature and keep it clean! The Havasupai tribe asks that you learn and practice Leave No Trace Principles before your trip (lnt.org/learn/7-principles)

Packing List

For a detailed packing list for Havasupai, subscribe to my blog mailing list below with your name and e-mail address. I will send out a packing list by the end of February. There is a lot of items you will need to pack for this trip and I’m writing a detailed list with links included!

11 Responses

  1. Hellooo!!
    Thank you so much for taking the time to post all this info.. Havasu Falls has been on my bucket list for years!! We are looking to relocate to AZ from NY in 2 years. This is all new to me regarding permits etc. and I so appreciate you. I am older and I love watching how you get out there and just do it. If I ever had a do over it would be to do exactly what you are doing. Keep following your dreams 💖🌸 -Lori

    1. Lori I’m happy I could help!! I’m so passionate about this place, it stole a piece of my heart ❤️ Let me know if you have any other questions about visiting there! Arizona is beautiful you will not regret moving.

  2. Great information and love looking at your photos. This has been on my bucket list for years! My girlfriend and I snagged a spot in early July. Our husbands didn’t want to go so we decided to just go on our own.

    1. Would love your packing list . I just stalked your insta and all your videos. GOALS girl GOALS! me and my girlfriend are going in august ! Prayers for good weather ! We took what we could get for reservations . SO EXCITED it’s been a buck list of mine for years ! Any information with photography and well if you would like to provide ? Also how did you get so lucky getting pictures without anyone else around ?

  3. Would love your packing list . I just stalked your insta and all your videos. GOALS girl GOALS! me and my girlfriend are going in august ! Prayers for good weather ! We took what we could get for reservations . SO EXCITED it’s been a buck list of mine for years ! Any information with photography and well if you would like to provide ? Also how did you get so lucky getting pictures without anyone else around ?

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Before I begin this post, I want to recall a time I brought my close friend Wendy skiing for the first time. She wore whatever she could scramble together in her closet and quit on the slopes 5 minutes into her run. She said “the cold ain’t for me” and she retreated to the lodge until I had my fair share of runs. This could have been avoided if Wendy had the proper ski attire. I hope this post is helpful for all of the Wendys out there.


Base Layer Long Sleeve– I always start layering with a long tee that is quick dry and thin. I use this Columbia Midweight Stretch Baselayer Long Sleeve Shirt as my base layer. Columbia is a great company for outerwear and I’m always happy with the quality and price! It has thermal reflective lining to trap heat and won’t be super thick.

Base Layer Tights– You’re going to want to wear a base layer under your snow pants. I love these Columbia Midweight Stretch Baselayer Tights. They retain your body heat and keep you super warm on the slopes. I own 2 pairs that I bring with me on every ski trip.

Half-Zip Fleece– After putting on my long sleeve base layer, I layer up with this Columbia Glacial IV half-zip fleece. It isn’t too bulky and thick, but it’s super soft and keeps me warm. I own about 5 of these in different prints because I got them on sale at the Columbia Outlet. When the weather is warmer, I’ll just wear my baselayer long sleeve and this type of fleece under my shell jacket.

Full-Zip Fleece– Now if it’s snowing and the weather is colder, I add a third layer. At that point I recommend one that zips all the way down, like this Women’s Columbia Benton Springs Zip-Front Fleece Jacket. If you start to feel like you’re getting warm again, you can just put this to the side easily. Better safe than sorry so I always bring mine.

Boot Socks– In order to keep those feet warm and avoid getting blisters in your boots, you will need the proper socks for skiing. I personally use these Eurosock Graphic OTC Socks made by the company Turtle Fur. I have been wearing their products for years and was recently approached by them to represent their brand, which I was more than happy to do because their products for skiing are amazing. Use promo code “BLONDEINTRANSIT10” for 10% off your order with Turtle Fur.

Bandana Neck Warmer– Trust me when I say you need this. It is going to keep your face and neck warm while also preventing wind burn. My first choice is this Bandana Face Shield Neck Warmer made by Turtle Fur. It is not fleece lined, which is perfect for me because its so comfortable to breathe through. It keeps my face warm while also protecting me from sun and wind burn. Feel free to use promo code “BLONDEINTRANSIT10” for 10% off your order with Turtle Fur.

Fleece-Lined Neck and Headwear– When its snowing and colder on the slopes, I use this Long Tail Totally Tubular Headwear also made by Turtle Fur instead of the bandana listed above. This one is lined with fleece for extra warmth, and can be worn as a neck, a balaclava, a headband and more. Either of these are perfect to tuck under your goggles to cover your face from the wind and cold. Use promo code “BLONDEINTRANSIT10” for 10% off your order with Turtle Fur.

Snow Goggles– A pair of goggles are a must. They will protect your eyes from the wind and the cold while also protecting your eyes from the sun. An inexpensive choice would be these Smith Riot Goggles. They have great reviews and you have a few colors to choose from. This year I purchased a pair of these Blenders Goggles that come in a variety of colors and designs. I like that the lenses detach magnetically and each purchase comes with two interchangeable lenses, one for cloudy conditons and one for sunny.

Gloves– I swear by these North Face Montana E-Tip Gore-Tex Mittens. My favorite thing about these mittens is that they have a wrist strap. I LOVE this because it makes it impossible to lose your gloves. They are easy to take on and off because of this strap. They are also super comfortable, warm and stay dry all day. I splurged on these gloves and don’t regret it.

Jacket– There are many different options for jackets out there, some heavier than others. I prefer to buy a shell jacket for riding because it gives me full control over layering my clothing underneath based on the weather. It is just as uncomfortable to be too hot on the slopes as it is to be too cold. I have been using a jacket similar to this Oakley Snow Insulated 10K/2L Womens jacket which is a GREAT price right now at under $120. I prefer a black jacket because it’s easier to style. You can match any color pant to it and also play around with fun neck warmer prints without it looking tacky.

Snow Pants– You will definitely need to buy snow pants for skiing. Please don’t wear jeans or leggings on the slopes, you will end up soaking wet and freezing. I swear by these Columbia On the Slope II Ski pants. They are insulated, super affordable and very comfortable for riding. I also like these Volcom Species Stretch pants. I wore my Volcom pants for over 5 years and they held up very well. I always wear my base layer leggings underneath my snow pants for extra warmth and comfort.

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1.Explore Bushkill Falls :

This is a beautiful place to witness the leaves changing colors. The hiking trails around the park are relatively easy & you pass 8 beautiful waterfalls along the way. I recommend good hiking sneakers as it can get slippery on the wooden planks surrounding the waterfalls. You can easily spend a few hours here taking in the fall foliage. You can purchase tickets for the park once you’re there or click here to purchase tickets in advance.

2. Glamping at the Shawnee Inn Resort :

Stay in a luxurious tent at the Shawnee Inn in East Stroudsburg! It is a beautiful place to view fall foliage & you have access to all of their resort amenities. There is also a brewery on site called the ShawneeCraft Brewing Company. You can easily get to Bushkill Falls & Mount Tammany from this hotel and you will be right on the Delaware River which is easily one of my favorite places to kayak in the area. Shawnee offers kayak & canoe rentals on their property at a discount. Riverside glamping is available until October 26th, click here for more info on glamping with them.

3. Visit the Bates Motel & Haunted Hayride :

I have a feeling this will be the year I finally make it to this haunted attraction in Glen Mills, PA. I’ve heard it is amazing from so many people & it will really get you into the halloween spirit. Tickets start going on sale Fri. Sept 20, 2019 and run until Thurs. Oct 31st. It is consistently rated as one of the best haunted attractions in the United States & has been awarded Best Haunt in America by CNN travel in 2018. They are currently running a deal on this with Groupon, click here for the deal.

4. Terror Behind the Walls at Eastern State Penitentiary :

It’s not everyday that you can walk through a massive haunted prison. This attraction is one of my favorites & is located right in the center of Philadelphia. Terror Behind the Walls goes from Sept. 20th until November 9th & consists of six attractions inside the cell blocks that will scare the living hell out of you (if you’re a big baby like I am). Click here to purchase tickets from their website.

5. Hike up Mount Tammany :

If you are up for a challenge, hike up to this fantastic overlook of the Delaware Water Gap. You will be blown away by the views, especially during fall foliage. This hike is easily accessible from PA & it is considered to be in NJ. It can be a bit steep at times but it was totally worth it for the views of the river from the top. I recommend staying at the Shawnee Inn in East Strousburg, PA which is a short drive away from the trailhead. Click here for more details on the hike & exact location.

6. Visit Blue Ridge Estate Vineyard & Winery :

If you are planning on hiking Mount Tammany or visiting Bushkill falls in the Delaware Water Gap area, the Blue Ridge Estate Vineyard & Winery is a beautiful spot to visit. It was recommended to me by a local & I was so happy I checked it out. You’ll be treated to 360 degree views of the vineyards & mountains from the tasting room. Wine tastings are only $7 & you’ll be able to try 5 of their delicious wines. For more information, click here to check out their website.

7. Visit one of Philly’s Harvest Festivals :

I stumbled upon an article that sums up 20+ festivals going on this fall in Philly. This is a perfect opportunity to enjoy pumpkin picking, hayrides, cornfield mazes & more during the entire fall season. Click here for a summary of all upcoming festivals!

8. Visit Ricketts Glen State Park :

This was one of my favorite hikes I ever did in the fall. A 3.2 mile walk along the trail takes you past 21 waterfalls ranging in heights from 11 feet to 94 feet. I did this hike on a day it was raining but it made the waterfalls that much more beautiful. You can do this hike by going on Highland Trail and the Glen Leigh and Ganoga Glen sides of the trail. 

 

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Just as the world finished catching their breath from Beyonce’s jaw-dropping Coachella performance last April, Coachella pre-sale for weekend 2 starts this Monday for 2020! Weekend 1 passes are sold out but you still have a chance to snag some for weekend 2.

I went to Coachella for the first time April 2018 & I had the best time ever!The festival lineup is usually announced just three months before the festival, but that doesn’t stop everyone from buying their tickets well in advance.

Before you buy tickets, I want to share with you everything I learned from MONTHS of planning for Coachella. There are so many things you may overlook that could throw off your entire trip, so here’s a beginners guide to one of the best music festivals in the world. 

What is Coachella?

Coachella is a Music and Arts Festival that takes place in Indo, California at the Empire Polo Grounds every April over the course of two separate weekends. Some of the world’s most famous artists and bands perform at this festival every year across five main stages. Coachella makes it a point to represent all musical genres. 

The festivalis locatedapproximately 2.5 hours east of Los Angeles Airport. Thousands of people make their way to Coachella every year, and tickets always sell out.The location of this festival is very unique which adds to the whole experience. Not many people can say they went to a music festival in the desert! 

Purchasing Tickets: General Admission or VIP 

General admission tickets go for $399. If you buy during the pre-sale, you will be able to pay off your tickets in 7 monthly payments. The sooner you start paying for your trip, the better because things will start adding up. Tickets usually sell out within a few hours, so make sure you log in quick and know what you want.

There is also an option of buying a Festival Pass/Shuttle Combo for $474. You can find out the drop off locations for the shuttle on Coachella’s website. If your hotel or campground is one of them, I highly recommend purchasing the combination pass.

If you’re feeling fancy, a VIP Coachella ticket will cost you $929. There were certain instances that we wished we had bought VIP tickets. Having the VIP wristband allowed you access into designated VIP areas with clean bathrooms and certain beer gardens/restaurants that were inaccessible to those with General Admission wristbands. The lines for the bathrooms and food there were significantly shorter.

If you end up buying general admission, make sure to plan ahead when you want to eat between sets. Give yourself at least an hour to get food or drinks because of the lines. If you forget to eat, you will get hungry at the worst possible times. I definitely missed at least three artists I really wanted to see because I was stuck waiting in line for food. Make sure you bring an empty water bottle into the festival. There are free water refill stations all over the festival grounds and you will want to stay hydrated.  

Avoid ticket Reseller viagogo 

Last year I got on Coachella’s website just as their tickets sold out, which led me to my first mistake of purchasing tickets from a reseller called Viagogo. We ended up paying $650 each for General Admission tickets when it should have been just $430. The amount of hidden fees they tack on at checkout is disgusting. I’m not really sure how they are still in business. To top it all off, two of our tickets didn’t arrive until a week before the festival!

Viagogo tricked me into thinking their site was the last resort for buying tickets. They (obnoxiously) showed a meter on their site indicating that their ticket stock for Coachella was rapidly decreasing (which wasn’t true because I lurked on their site daily & they NEVER sold out). This was before I realized Coachella would be having another ticket sale closer to the date of the festival, so I hurried through the checkout process and bought the tickets. I could go on and on about the stress they caused me but just read the horror stories about them online.

 The reason I will never trust buying Coachella tickets from viagogo again is that you might not get your tickets until 3 days before the festival. The person selling you their ticket has to wait to get theirs first, and Coachella doesn’t mail out their official tickets until a month before the festival. You are at the mercy of your seller to put their ticket in the mail in time for you to get it.  They also have practically no customer service. For months I tried calling them and there was never an answer.  After spending tons of money on flights, campsites, rental cars, etc., you do not want to worry about not having your ticket in time for the festival. 

Weekend 1 or Weekend 2?

If you didn’t already know, there are two weekends of Coachella. The performers for both weekends are the same, so you can pick whichever weekend works best for you. Last year I went to Weekend 2 and had no complaints.

There are a lot more celebrity sightings during the first weekend. It is definitely more crowded the first weekend with people who want to be “seen”. Coachella live streams online during Weekend 1, so you see all of the huge surprise guests and performers before attending Weekend 2. You still get some elements of surprise during Weekend 2, like when Kygo brought out Ariana Grande for his set. 

Almost all of the exclusive parties happen during Weekend 1 (Revolve Festival & Neon Carnival), but unless you’re a “somebody” you are not going to get into them. If you survive being out in 95 degree weather from noon until midnight, don’t get ahead of yourself and think you’d also survive partying your ass off till the morning. We were so tired after each day of Coachella that we couldn’t even imagine going anywhere besides home base. 

Camping at Coachella

Don’t get me wrong, I love camping and being outdoors. However, just the thought of camping outside with thousands of people side by side in 95 degree weather made me pass out. I knew I would want my own space, a bed and air conditioning after being out in the desert heat all day so camping was out of the picture for me. I will say, however, that car camping on the festival grounds is the cheapest way to go.

Car camping costs $125 total per campsite for your entire weekend, and from what I hear one campsite has enough space to comfortably fit 4-5 people with all of your gear, tents and up to one vehicle (additional car can be added for a fee). Once you’re all settled in, you will not be able to drive in and out of the festival. 

When buying tickets, make sure at least one person in your group purchases a car camping pass with their ticket in the same order on the Coachella website. If you have a bigger group, you may purchase multiple parking passes amongst yourselves and combine campsites. Keep in mind, if you buy your tickets from a reseller without a car camping pass together in the same order, you will not be able to go on Coachella’s website and buy just a camping pass.

A lot of people we met said that camping adds to the entire experience of Coachella. It definitely seemed like a great way to meet new friends since you’re all camping so close to each other (literally back to back camping). Being really close to the festival entrance is also a perk of car camping, however I have to warn you that it gets very HOT in the desert and you have to be able to tolerate a lot of noise/heat/people to get through a weekend camping at Coachella

Why we chose to stay at Indian Waters RV Resort

If you’re like me and you’re willing to spend a little bit more for comfort, you will DEFINITELY want to stay atIndian Waters RV Resort. This will be the best decision of your life. Don’t have an RV or refuse to rent one to drive? No worries, there is a company I found calledStar RV Rentals that will drop off & hook up a huge RV for you upon arrival at Indian Waters.

Indian Waters RV Resort is less than 5 miles away from the festival. The crowd at the RV resort were festival goers in their mid 20’s to upper 30’s. Nobody was disrespectful or obnoxious and we had no problems falling asleep at night. Every morning we walked down to the pool house for free continental breakfast. Afterwards, there was a DJ spinning all day at the pool and we would hang out there with everyone else before making our way to the festival.  

We only paid a total of $300 each for our four night stay after splitting the cost four ways. That included the RV rental and campsite costs. The RV came to $200 per night and the campsite was a little less than $100 per night. Our RV came equipped with a TV, dining table with couch seating, kitchen with a decent sized fridge, bathroom, shower, separate bedroom with queen size bed, a couch, two full bunk beds, and the ability to turn the dining room into another pull out bed. We also had air conditioning that worked great and was much needed because temperatures reached 100 degrees over the weekend.

Indian Waters offers a shuttle to and from the festival for $75 per person total for the whole weekend. The shuttle runs every 15 minutes and we never had an issue getting to the festival. If you plan on staying at Indian Waters, DO NOT buy the  shuttle pass directly from Coachella‘s website. Their shuttle does not stop at Indian Waters, which is why Indian Waters has their own shuttle they provide.

Coachella was an unforgettableexperience & I would do it again in a heartbeat. As long as you plan it right, you will not regret it! Feel free to leave any comments below. I don’t mind answering any questions you may have in regards to Coachella. This post will be updated regularly with more tips in the upcoming months as the festival approaches!

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Wanderer. Learner