Phoenix With Kids

Tonto Natural Bridge State Park With Kids

Kim Gudykunst Ollerhead
Tonto Natural Bridge

We visited Tonto Natural Bridge State Park with kids, and the natural bridge is a must see in Arizona! We visited in the summer, during an extreme heat warning, and while I do not recommend this, I definitely recommend visiting!

Trails

The main trail is strenuous and steep. We had multiple Rangers remind us to drink water and advised is to dip out hats in the cool water under the bridge. We took their advice and even stayed in a cool spot under the bridge and had some snacks and cool off time. A complete list of trails can be found here. All trails are short, but strenuous, bring water and if you’re hiking with kids, don’t forget patience. My kids were 5 and did fine. I was exhausted at the end of the day.

What is said to be the world’s largest travertine bridge can be seen from many angles within the park. Pictures and videos do not do this place justice!

Fun facts about this natural bridge:

  • Height of the bridge is 183 feet
  • Width of the tunnel is 150 feet
  • Length of the tunnel is 393 feet
  • Thickness of travertine above the tunnel is 60 feet

Waterfall Trail

The Waterfall Trail was about 300 steep feet to a beautiful but tiny waterfall. Definitely worth doing if you’re there. Maybe even go to get wet before hiking!

The Historic Lodge

The Goodfellow Lodge is a three story one of a kind cabin built in the 1920’s has 10 rooms, a kitchen and was once fully available. While you can not stay there, you can book a tour on Sundays and Wednesdays here. This limited space tour is about 45 minutes long and guided by a park ranger.

Tonto Natural Bridge State Park With Kids

Junior Ranger Badge

The kids completed their Junior Ranger Badges and took their pledge to protect the park. This state park also offers Activity Sheets for kids. Be sure to check them out here and print before heading out.

Pack out what you pack in and Leave No Trace. Carry lots of drinking water while hiking these trails. All trails are steep and strenuous.

Getting There

The bridge is located just north west of Payson, and just south of Pine if you are looking for a place to stay nearby.

Park Fees: Adult (14+): $7.00 Youth (7–13): $4.00 Child (0–6): FREE

Nf-583A

Pine, AZ 85544

More reviews on state parks can be found here!

Author

  • Kim Gudykunst Ollerhead

    Kim is a chef, dishwasher, dry cleaner, housekeeper, landscaper, snack fetcher, photographer and personal assistant to toddler twins. Curently homeschooling her three year olds and loving teaching preschool. She loves exploring everything with her kids and photographing every minute of it. Follow her on Instagram @phoenixwithtwins.

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