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Grand Canyon tourism still hasn't returned to pre-pandemic numbers

The National Park Service reports visitors to the Grand Canyon brought about $1 billion to Arizona’s economy last year. But visitation is still not back up to pre-pandemic levels.

Last year, 4.7 million visitors came to Grand Canyon National Park. That’s an improvement from the previous year, but still nearly 30% below 2018 numbers.

“Grand Canyon National Park, pre-pandemic heavily relied on international visitors, so we haven’t quite seen the return of international visitation like we did pre-pandemic,” said Joelle Baird, park spokesperson.

So far in 2023, Baird said visitation numbers are down about 10% from last year. Baird said that’s in part because of heavy snow this winter.

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Katherine Davis-Young is a senior field correspondent. She has produced work for NPR, New England Public Radio, Southern California Public Radio, PRI's The World, Washington Post, Reuters and more.She has a master’s degree in radio journalism from the USC Annenberg School of Journalism.She lives in central Phoenix with her husband, two daughters, and ill-behaved cat and dog. Her side-passions include photography, crosswords and hot sauce.