Best Places To Visit in Utah

The best places to visit in Utah include cities, parks, gardens, zoos, and resorts. Utah also nicknamed the beehive state is located in the western United States. Utah has the most beautiful and spectacular sight to visit.

The name is derived from the Native American Ute tribe and it means people of the mountains. I can’t tell how we concluded about visiting Utah but I can tell you it is worth a visit.

Utah has incredible scenic beauty all around the year. The thing I loved most was the outdoor activities. Almost everything you need is there. The activities include horseback riding, camping, rock climbing, and hiking.

Water lovers are not left out either, boating, water skiing, snowboarding is all available in Utah.  Salt Lake is the capital city and the modern and historical sites are worth visiting.

Best Places To Visit In Utah

Utah loaded with high alpine scenery, campsite, hiking, and biking trails is a place hard to decide on. Utah has it all, theaters, museums, sports, shopping, and nightlife. To name but a few here are some of the best places to visit in Utah.

Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City is situated between the Wasatch and Oquirrh Mountain ranges. The city was founded in 1847.

There are many parks in Salt Lake City; they are the Place Heritage Park, Sugar House Park, and Liberty Park which is home to a large number of birds. 

Salt Lake City offers scenic beauty along with a wide variety of natural attractions. Some of the city’s popular attractions include the Natural History Museum, Hogle Zoo, and the living Planet Aquarium.

Hogle Zoo host a variety of animals like the lion, giraffes, bears, elephants, grizzlies, and many more. 

Red Butte Garden and Arboretum consists of a botanic garden and it is located in the foothills of Salt Lake City. It features many different exhibits and hosts many musical concerts.

You can also spend time exploring the temple square. The 3-block square has 20 attractions related to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 

Vernal and Dinosaur National Monument

Dinosaur National Monument is situated in Northeastern Utah. It’s in this place that geological and climatic forces tilted, warped, and eroded the earth’s crust. 

Dinosaur National Monument is known for its fossils. Dinosaur quarry alone contains 11 different species of dinosaurs.

Fossils have been found beside the Carnegie Quarry. The fossils are 149 million years old. You can start by seeing the dinosaur bones or even touch them.

Do a scenic drive by enjoying views of striped cliffs. Rafting is allowed in the two rivers inside the Monument. Take a hike on the two most scenic loop trails.

You can explore the historic buildings. Pretend to go Fossil hunting which we did and got nothing, but the fun was there.

A ride along the road from Island Park to Rainbow Park will do you good. Snowmobiling or cross-country Skiing was also one of the things we enjoyed doing.  

Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area

Flaming Gorge is a big reservoir. The Flaming Gorge Dam began in 1958. The reservoir provides varied recreational activities like swimming, fishing, power boating, water skiing, and windsurfing.

You don’t require a permit or commercial guide for rafting. You can rent a raft just nearby. There are hiking trails and campgrounds. The trail wind through meadows, tree-covered slopes, and mountain peaks.

All sorts of wildlife including black bears, bobcats, deer, elk, wild horses, and wintering bald eagles are found. The animals are seen in their natural habitat.

Salt Lake City

Salt Lake is the capital and most popular city in Utah. Salt Lake draws people who love art, culture, nature, and the outdoors. The city is surrounded by mountains. 

The valley was settled in 1847 by Mormon pioneers. Salt Lake has plenty of cultural offerings, numerous parks, and inspiring buildings.

Hogle Zoo and Tracy Aviary are delightful for wildlife lovers. Hogle zoo house several diverse exhibits. The Museum of Fine Arts has a beautifully wide range of works and performance landmarks. 

There are so many things you can do here, like watching a movie in the Redwood drive-in movie theater. Red Butte Garden is the largest botanic garden and has 5 miles of walking and hiking trails.

The family history library has the largest site collection of genealogical data. You can try to discover your family history, it’s open to the public.

At the Great Salt Lake Marina, you can go kayaking, paddle boarding, and sailing. The Bonneville Salt Flats are densely packed with salt and offer one of the most unique landscapes in the world. You can pedal around town with your bike. 

I was surprised to find a Social Axe Throwing where people were throwing real axes at bull’s eye targets. I was not brave enough to even try but you can give it a chance.

Visiting Lake Powell Utah

Lake Powell is located in southern Utah. It is also part of the Colorado River. Lake Powell is also a manmade reservoir. It is the second-largest man-made reservoir. There are incredible canyons and natural landscapes. 

There are so many things you can do at Lake Powell. The place has numerous species of fish, you can enjoy fishing. There are also off-trail hiking almost everywhere make sure you carry a lot of water and navigation tools.

You can rent a houseboat on Lake Powell. Your family or friends will enjoy an overnight vacation. These boats have complete amenities, like the kitchen, hot tub, bedroom, and more depending on the size of the boat rented.

After exploring the Lake, you can hike at the most popular spot at the national park. I could not miss the Rainbow Bridge. The bridge is known to be the largest in the world.

The lake is known to be an amazing venue for water sports. Water skiing and waterboarding, and camping are available. The area surrounding the lake has the nicest campground. They have amenities like showers, restrooms, and a laundry area. 

Visit Moab

Moab is a city west of Utah and south of the Colorado River. The city was founded in mid- 1855 as a Mormon mission. 

There is the Moab Museum of film and western heritage that tells a story of Utah’s rich film history. Visit the Dead Horse Point State Park and see where cowboys used to corral their horses.

You can take time at Moab Giants Dinosaur Park. While at Moab Giants you will walk among life-sized dinosaurs on the walking trails.      

Moab has a vast outdoor playground for hikers, mountain bikers, paddlers, and climbers. Arches National Park is in Moab. It is home to more than 2,000 sandstone arches, giant pinnacles, massive fins, and large balanced rocks.

Moab also hosts Canyonlands National Park. The Park offers hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, rafting, backpacking, and four-wheeling.  

Zion National Park 

Zion National Park was Utah’s 1st National Park. The Park is located in southwestern Utah. The purpose of the park is to preserve dramatic geology. 

The Park offers the most magnificent vistas and hiking opportunities. There are dramatic rock formations, beautiful waterfalls, deserts, a narrow slot canyon, and soaring cliffs.  

Zion National Park is the best in viewing the awe-inspiring night sky. Zion has also installed night lightings at buildings inside the park. This helps the skies optimal for night sky viewing.

Yoga classes are available. It’s a 2.5 hours class. Pa’rus trail allows bicycles. The trail is 3.5 miles. The Park also has a Zion Half Marathon. This popular marathon race runs adjacent to the park.

If you don’t want to get tired use the Zion helicopters for panoramic views of Zion’s steep red rock cliff.

If you have a good day, with enough energy, Rock Climbing can be an option. This will make you get closer to the landscape.    

Visiting Park City

Park City is located in Northern Utah. There are three resorts in the park. The 3 resorts are deer Valley Resort, Park City Mountain Resort, and Canyons Resort.

The resorts offer ice skating, tubing, snowshoeing, bobsledding, snowmobiling, and also have an Alpine Coaster.

The city has a major hub for the Sundance Film Festival. Biking and hiking in warmer months to explore. You can also shop at the factory outlet stores or enjoy the nightlife at the club and bars.

I enjoyed one of the evenings by catching a performance at the Egyptian Theater. You can also dine at River horse on Main. It is the best restaurant in park city and the whole country. 

If you are looking for relaxation, Spa Montage Deer Valley is loaded with a lap pool, steam rooms, and every amenity you need.

Visiting during the spring to fall will make you enjoy horseback riding. Park City boasts 15 golf courses. 7 golf courses are public and 8 are private. 

Bryce Canyon National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park is a sprawling reserve located in southwestern Utah. The place is a collection of giant natural amphitheaters.

Bryce is distinguishing due to geological structures called hoodoos. The forest has as many red rock hoodoos as trees. 

There are so many things you can do at Bryce Canyon. You can walk the rim of the main canyon and view Bryce from the top. Hike down into the main canyon using the Navajo Loop.

The early morning and dusk are best for wildlife sightings. You are advised not to feed the animals. Photo shooting is allowed in Bryce Canyon. Capture the goodies of sunrise and head to sunset.   

Visiting Antelope Island

Antelope Island is a 42 square mile island located in the Great Salt Lake west of Ogden Utah. The place was established as Utah State Park in 1969.

There are lots of activities at Antelope Island. You will also find Camping, stargazing, horseback riding, mountain biking, and swimming.

Antelope Island is the largest of ten islands in the Great Salt Lake. First, we started with the Visitors Centre. The rangers gave information about the bison herd. 

We later hike a 20 miles trail, I was confused between saying it’s an easy or hard one, can’t explain the views of the Great Salt Lake or the Wasatch Mountains. I loved it.

I could admire the bison, and wonder why the island is called Antelope Island. I spotted more bison than antelopes.

Other animals I saw were mule deer, bighorn sheep, pronghorn antelope, and coyotes. You can hail a horse to explore the park. 

Visiting Provo Utah

Provo is the 3rd largest city in Utah. It is 43 miles south of Salt Lake City and home to Brigham young university. Provo is known for its abundance of beauty and could not miss in this list of best places to visit in Utah. 

There are so many things you can do in Provo. Visit the Bridal Veil Falls. This fall is a 600-foot-tall waterfall. The spacious recreational area has picnic tables and barbecue grills. There are scenic walkways in front of the waterfall.

Provo Canyon is known for rock climbing, hiking, and biking trails. You can also visit the Covey Centre for the Arts. The center offers live art exhibits, dance classes, and live performances.

We didn’t get time to visit the BYU Museum of Paleontology but it is worth trying. The place was built in 1976 as a repository for rock and dinosaur fossils.

Monte L. Bean Life Science Museum was opened in 1978 and is worth a visit. The museum contains a vast collection of plans and taxidermies animals.

You can participate in the museum’s animal shows, drawing, reading activities, and group tours. If I had gone along with the kids am sure they would have enjoyed the Splash Summit Waterpark. The Park has waterslides, a pool, and hot tubs. 

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Final Thoughts

Utah is not only a fun place but the place has something for everyone. Utah has 5 national parks, 45 state parks, and 5 national historic sites. You can’t miss dozens of National monuments and recreation areas.

Utah will give you an amazing high adventure. Whether you had planned or not the guides will allow you to deeply experience the outdoors.

There are rails, buses, cars, and flights. Choose what is convenient and affordable to you. Enjoy your trip and don’t forget to follow me on Visitingtravelers Pinterest.

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