This is less of a hike than a challenge, a grueling test of will and a badge of honor for the most experienced and well fit of hikers who are able to accomplish hiking over 24 miles from Rim-to-Rim and all the elevation descent and gain that comes in between. Finishing this bucket list experience is just as worthwhile in a single day excursion as it is camping in one way and out the other, but either way will require months of planning and training in advance if you want to be in shape for this experience.
If you want to hike from the South Rim to the North (or vice versa, or a Rim-to-Rim-to-Rim if you’re feeling particularly nutty) there are two main ways to accomplish it. In either case you’ll be taking the North Kaibab and all it has to offer, but your experience on the South Rim will depend on if you’re taking Bright Angel or South Kaibab. We’d go with a similar recommendation as before — South Kaibab if you’re going down, Bright Angel if you’re coming up. If you’re day hiking, there are lodgings on either rim to collapse into at the end of your hiking day and shuttles that connect both sides of the canyon if you don’t have other transportation back to where you started. If you’re backpacking, tackle one half at a time by camping at Bright Angel Campground or secure those lodgings at Phantom Ranch before heading out the other end the next day. While hiking the full measure in one day is what most to care to brag for, don’t be shy about taking credit for backpacking in and out— carrying all your equipment in and out is just a different layer of challenge to pat yourself on the back for completing, after all.