A natural phenomenon in a privately owned park 43 miles east of Flagstaff, Meteor Crater is impressive if for no other reason than its sheer size. A hole in the ground 600 feet deep, nearly 1 mile across, and more than 3 miles in circumference, Meteor Crater is large enough to accommodate the Washington Monument or 20 football fields. It was created by a meteorite crash 49,000 years ago. The area looks so much like the surface of the moon that NASA made it one of the official
training sites for the Project Apollo astronauts.
You can't descend into the crater because of the efforts of its owners to maintain its condition—scientists consider this to be the best-preserved crater on Earth—but guided rim tours give useful background information, and telescopes along the rim offer you a closer look. There's a sandwich shop on site, and the Rock Shop sells specimens from the area and jewelry made from native stones. Take Interstate 40 east of Flagstaff to Exit 233, then drive 6 miles south on Meteor Crater Road.
Interstate 40, Exit 233, Winslow, Arizona, 86047, United States