Petrified Forest National Park is a beautiful destination in the heart of Arizona, known for its stunning petrified wood and colorful badlands. You can easily reach the park by car or bus, but unfortunately, there is no airport directly serving Petrified Forest National Park.
However, there are several airports within driving distance that provide access to the park and surrounding areas. In this article, we’ll explore the options for getting to Petrified Forest National Park by air and provide information on the nearest airports and their distances from the park.
Closest Airports To Petrified Forest National Park
The closest airports to Petrified Forest National Park are Show Low Regional Airport (SOW) and Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ).
Show Low Regional Airport is located about 80 miles from the park. The airport has limited flight options – served by Boutique Air, but it is a good option if you’re planning to rent a car to explore the park.
- Distance From Petrified Forest National Park: 80 miles
- Driving Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
- Airlines Served: Boutique Air
Albuquerque International Sunport is located about 220 miles from Petrified Forest National Park. The airport is larger than Show Low Regional Airport and has more flight options, including international flights.
- Distance From Petrified Forest National Park: 220 miles
- Driving Time: 3.5 hours
- Airlines Served: American Airlines, Delta, Southwest, United, and more.
For most, the best option here will be Albuquerque Airport. Although it’s a longer drive, the flight options are much greater and more convenient than Show Low Airport.
How To Get To Petrified Forest National Park From The Airport
The drive from Albuquerque International Sunport to Petrified Forest National Park is a picturesque drive that spans across the high desert of New Mexico and the expansive landscapes of eastern Arizona. The route takes you through historic towns, rugged terrain, and awe-inspiring vistas that are sure to take your breath away.
After leaving the airport, take the I-25 North towards Santa Fe and continue until you reach the I-40 East. The drive on I-40 is long and straight, but the views are breathtaking. You will pass through small towns and vast open lands dotted with mesas, cactus, and rock formations. As you approach the Arizona border, the terrain becomes more rugged and mountainous, and you will pass through the Petrified Forest National Park.
The park itself is located off exit 311 on I-40 and is about 26 miles east of Holbrook, Arizona. Once you exit the highway, the park entrance is a short drive away. The roads inside the park are well-maintained and offer access to several viewpoints and hiking trails that showcase the park’s unique geology and ancient history.
The drive from Albuquerque to Petrified Forest National Park takes around 3 to 4 hours and covers a distance of approximately 285 miles. Make sure to pack plenty of water and snacks for the journey, as services are limited along the way. It’s also important to note that weather conditions can vary, so it’s always a good idea to check the weather forecast and road conditions before embarking on the journey.
Where To Stay?
For a fun stay near Petrified Forest, you can’t go wrong with Brad’s Desert Inn. Located just 18 miles from the park, this motel offers everything you’d expect from a big-budget hotel, for a fraction of the price.
What Is the Closest City to Petrified Forest National Park?
The closest city to Petrified Forest National Park is Holbrook, Arizona. Holbrook is a small town located about 25 miles west of the park. It’s the perfect basecamp for exploring the park and the surrounding area.
Holbrook offers a range of accommodations, from hotels to RV parks, so you can find the perfect place to stay during your visit. If you’re looking for things to do, you can explore the historic downtown area, visit the Wigwam Motel (a Route 66 icon, and one of our favorites), or take a trip to the nearby Meteor Crater.
There are also several restaurants in Holbrook where you can grab a bite to eat. Some popular options include Joe and Aggie’s Cafe (known for their Navajo tacos), The Butterfield Stage Company Steakhouse, and the Globetrotter Lodge (which has a diner on-site).