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Hotels in Williams, Arizona

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Best Williams hotels

Williams Introduction

Williams, Arizona is a magnet for visitors not just for the city’s own attractions but also for the journey itself—this charming community lies on Historic Route 66, and marks the southern terminus of the Grand Canyon Railway. The ‘Gateway to the Grand Canyon’ has been thriving on tourism for over a hundred years, welcoming all comers from bandana-wearing bikers to steam enthusiasts and winter sports lovers. Vintage gas stations, Art Deco storefronts, and neon-lit diners recapture the heyday of the iconic east-west road trip, while the historic locomotives that ply the Grand Canyon route recall the glory days of rail travel.

Hotels in Williams

With such a long and robust history of tourism, it comes as no surprise to discover a diverse and plentiful supply of hotels in Williams. From retro-style motels full of quirky memorabilia to cozy mountain lodges with nature as your neighbor, this offbeat city encourages you to step out of your comfort zone and try something new. Check into a country inn to explore off the beaten path, enjoy the personal touch in a quaint family-run B&B, savor the taste of the great outdoors in a well-appointed RV park, or lose yourself in nostalgia at one of the refurbished luxury hotels in Williams downtown.

Where to stay

If it’s your first visit to Williams, you’ll appreciate the special privilege of staying in the heart of its atmospheric downtown. Explore the heritage landmarks that chronicle its early days as a trapper settlement and pioneering railroad town and enjoy the dime stores and diners lining Route 66 as it passes through the city center. Some Williams hotel deals include a trip to the Grand Canyon—the major must-see attraction of any visit—as part of the package. Alternatively, stay in a scenic mountain lodge and enjoy the nature trails that have put Williams on the ecotourism map in recent years.

Things to see

Williams was the final town on Route 66 to be bypassed by the building of Interstate 40, and its success in retaining much of the historic highway’s authentic charm was swiftly rewarded with a prestigious listing on the National Register of Historic Places. The Historic Business District encompasses 6 blocks of downtown Williams, showcasing many examples of vernacular architecture from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Highlights include the Fray Marcos Hotel, dating back to the heyday of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway, and the Sultana Theater, where the first ‘talkie’ in Northern Arizona was shown in 1930. Next to the Fray Marcos is another legacy of the Santa Fe Railway, the Williams Depot, which now serves the popular tourist line to the Grand Canyon. The journey time between Williams and this natural wonder of the world is 2 hours 15 minutes, traveling through some spectacular scenery en route.

How to get to Williams

Williams is around 4 hours’ drive from Las Vegas and 3 hours from Phoenix, with both cities’ airports offering a wide choice of domestic and international flight connections. Amtrak’s Southwest Chief train route from Chicago to Los Angeles stops at Williams Junction, 3 miles east of downtown, with shuttle coaches to the Grand Canyon Railway terminus. Travel in Williams, other than to the Grand Canyon itself, is limited to local taxicabs, so if you want to explore further afield it's a good idea to hire a car or bring your own transportation.