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Utah is home to some of the best parks in the country. Utah is a nature lover’s paradise, from Zion National Park to Bryce Canyon National Park. Knowing which one to visit can be challenging with so many amazing parks. Here are some of the best parks in Utah that you won’t want to miss.
- Best Parks in Utah to Visit
- 1. Zion National Park
- 2. Bryce Canyon National Park
- 3. Arches National Park
- 4. Canyonlands National Park
- 5. Dead Horse Point State Park
- 6. Capitol Reef National Park
- 7. Antelope Island State Park
- 8. Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park
- 9. Kodachrome Basin State Park
- 10. Goblin Valley State Park
- 11. Sand Hollow State Park
- 12. Cedar Breaks National Monument
- 13. Snow Canyon State Park
- 14. Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park
- 15. Goosenecks State Park
- 16. Natural Bridges National Monument
- 17. Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area
- 18. Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument
- 19. Dinosaur National Monument
- How many parks are there in Utah?
- What is the most famous park in Utah?
Best Parks in Utah to Visit
1. Zion National Park
Zion National Park is one of Utah’s most popular parks due to the stunning, unworldly red rock formations and the incredible hiking trails. April to October is the best time to visit because the weather is perfect.
You can hike all day and then relax in your hotel room at night. And if you’re looking for something to do, plenty of restaurants and bars are in town. There are many great tours to take in Zion National Park, but some of the best include the following:
- The Narrows: This hiking tour takes you through one of the park’s most narrow and spectacular canyons. You’ll need to be prepared for a little bit of hiking, but it’s well worth it for the views.
- The Emerald Pools: This tour takes you to some of the most beautiful pools in the park, which are fed by waterfalls. It’s a great way to cool off on a hot day.
- Angels Landing: This is one of the most popular trails in Zion. The views from the top are incredible, and it’s a great workout. Be prepared for some steep hiking, though.
- Canyon Overlook: It is one of the best parks in Utah to visit. The views from the overlook are incredible, and there are plenty of hiking trails to explore.
If you’re looking for something less strenuous, there are plenty of other options in Zion National Park., even short hikes offer stunning views, and you can also take river rafting tours or horseback rides.
Plenty of hotels near Zion National Park, so you won’t have to worry about finding a place to stay. Including the Zion Lodge, located right inside the park, offering stunning views and easy access to all the best hiking trails and attractions.
Zion National Park Springdale Upscale Villa, located just outside the park, offers a more relaxed atmosphere and easy access to all the best restaurants and shops in town. The Best Western Zion Park Inn, right in the heart of Springdale, offers easy access to all the best parks and attractions.
See Related: Things to Know Before Going to Zion National Park
2. Bryce Canyon National Park
Bryce Canyon National Park is an otherworldly place best known for its hoodoos. These unique rock formations were created over time by erosion, making for a landscape like no other. Bryce Canyon is busiest from May to September when the weather is warm and pleasant.
Book your lodging in advance if you’re planning a visit during this time. Bryce Canyon is a popular destination even outside of peak season, so it’s always a good idea to have a plan.
The best way to experience Bryce Canyon is to hike through it. There are trails of all difficulty levels, so whether you’re a seasoned hiker or a beginner, there’s a perfect path. Bryce Canyon is truly one of the most beautiful places on Earth. There are many great tours to take in Bryce Canyon National Park, but some of the best include the following:
- The Rim Trail: This trail takes you along the canyon’s edge, offering stunning views of the hoodoos below. It’s an excellent option for all levels of hikers.
- The Fairyland Loop Trail: This trail is a bit more challenging, but it takes you through some of the most beautiful parts of the park. Be prepared for a bit of uphill hiking.
- The Queens Garden Trail: This is a shorter and easier trail that takes you to some of the most popular hoodoos in the park. It’s a great option if you’re short on time or energy.
Hotels near Bryce Canyon National Park include the Ruby’s Inn, located right outside the park, and offers easy access to all the best trails and attractions. The Best Western Plus Bryce Canyon Grand Hotel is another great option, located in the heart of Bryce Canyon City, with easy access to all the shops and restaurants.
See Related: Where to Stay in Bryce Canyon
3. Arches National Park
The best time to visit Arches National Park is from April to October. The weather is warm and dry during this time, making it ideal for hiking and exploring the park.
The park is an impressive sight, even during the winter months. The snow-capped rocks, Ice Age fossils, and formations create a unique and otherworldly landscape. Arches National Park will impress you no matter what time of year you visit. If you’re planning a trip to Arches National Park, be sure to add some of these tours to your itinerary:
- The Fiery Furnace: This tour takes you into the park’s heart, where you’ll see some of the most fantastic rock formations up close.
- The Delicate Arch Viewpoint: From this vantage point, you’ll get a stunning view of the Delicate Arch, one of the most iconic symbols of Utah.
- The Windows Section: This part of the park is home to some of the most beautiful views in Arches National Park. Be sure to bring your camera!
- The Devils Garden: The Devils Garden is a must-see for any visitor to the park. Here, you’ll find a variety of impressive rock formations.
The best hotels to book near the national park in Utah are La Quinta Inn & Suites Moab, Holiday Inn Express Moab, and The Gonzo Inn. Arches National Park is one of the most popular parks in Utah, and for a good reason – it is home to over 2,000 natural arches.
The park can be hot during summer, so bring plenty of water and sunscreen. Wearing sturdy shoes is also a great idea, as several hiking trails are available.
See Related: Where To Stay In Moab, Utah: Best Areas & Places
4. Canyonlands National Park
Canyonlands National Park is best known for its canyons and rivers. The best time to visit Canyonlands is from April to October. Canyonlands are a great place to explore the outdoors and experience natural beauty. There are many hiking trails and opportunities for camping, bird watching, and photography.
Canyonlands are also a popular destination for rafting and kayaking. The park is home to three different rivers – the Green River, the Colorado River, and the San Juan River. Each river has its unique character and offers another rafting or kayaking experience.
There are many great tours to book in Canyonlands National Park. The best include hiking, camping, jeep, and river rafting tours. Whatever your interests, there will surely be a perfect tour for you.
Hotels near Canyonlands National Park were the Best Western Plus Canyonlands Inn, Hotel Comfort Suites Moab near Arches National Park, and Quality Inn Moab.
Sunscreen, water, hats, and snacks should be brought while visiting Canyonlands National Park.
See Related: Things to Do in Provo, Utah
5. Dead Horse Point State Park
Dead Horse Point State Park is one of the best parks in Utah to visit. It offers stunning views of the Colorado River and Canyonlands National Park. There are a variety of activities to enjoy at the park, including hiking, biking, and camping. Dead Horse Point is named after the practice of corralling wild mustangs on the plateau and letting them die of thirst.
The views from Dead Horse Point are some of the most dramatic and beautiful in the world. On a clear day, you can see for miles in all directions. The park is also home to wildlife, including bighorn sheep, deer, eagles, and hawks. If you’re looking for an unforgettable way to experience Utah’s natural beauty, Dead Horse Point State Park is a must-see.
Several tour companies offer jeep and ATV tours of the park, a great way to see more terrain. Dead Horse Point State Park is also home to one of the best stargazing spots in Utah, so be sure to bring your telescope!
There are also several different hotels and resorts located near the park. Some of the best hotels near the Dead Horse Point State Park include the Marriott Courtyard Moab, the Hilton Inn Moab, and the Residence Inn by Marriott Moab. These hotels offer various amenities, including swimming pools, restaurants, and fitness centers.
6. Capitol Reef National Park
Capitol Reef National Park is worth checking out if you’re looking for a beautiful park and place to visit in Utah. Capitol Reef is known for its stunning red rock cliffs and canyons and its abundance of wildlife.
Some animals you might see while visiting Capitol Reef include bighorn sheep, mountain lions, and mule deer. There are also a variety of birds that call Capitol Reef homes, such as eagles, hawks, and owls.
Capitol Reef is also home to some of the most extensive petroglyphs in North America. The Fremont people who once lived in the area created these ancient rock art panels.
Today, Capitol Reef is a popular destination for hikers, climbers, and campers. Capitol Reef National Park is worth visiting whether you want to explore the great outdoors or appreciate the beautiful scenery.
There are many great hotels near Capitol Reef National Park. The following are some of the best ones: The Burr Trail Lodge is a beautiful hotel with amazing views of the red rocks and canyon country.
When visiting Capitol Reef National Park, it is important to bring adequate supplies for hiking and exploration. Some essentials include sunscreen, hats, water bottles, snacks, and binoculars. It is also essential to dress in layers, as the weather can be unpredictable in this area.
See Related: Things to Do in Kanab, Utah
7. Antelope Island State Park
Antelope Island State Park is one of the best parks in Utah to visit. It’s an excellent place for hiking, biking, bird watching, and fishing. The visitor center is a great place to start your visit.
Then, you can explore the miles of trails or head down to Syracuse Lake for some fishing. The park’s campground is also an excellent option for a few days. Antelope Island State Park is a great place to get away from it all and enjoy the beauty of nature.
There are several excellent hotels near Antelope Island State Park, so you can easily find a place to stay that fits your budget and needs. If you want to see things at the park, check out the Great Salt Lake, the Antelope Island Causeway, and the Fielding Garr Ranch. There are also plenty of great hiking and biking trails to explore.
Bring sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, and water to make the most of your visit. Snacks or a picnic lunch are also a good idea, as there are no restaurants on the island. With some planning, you will have a great time at Antelope Island State Park.
See Related: Grand Canyon National Park Itinerary
8. Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park
Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park is one of Utah’s best parks. It’s well known for its beautiful pink sand, resulting from the high iron concentration in the surrounding rocks. The park is also home to wildlife, including deer, coyotes, and lizards. Visitors can enjoy hiking, camping, and ATV riding in the park.
Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park is located in Kanab, Utah. It’s about a three-hour drive from Salt Lake City, Utah, and a five-hour drive from Las Vegas, Nevada. The best time to visit the park is from April to October. The weather is warm during these months, and the dunes are open for recreation.
If you’re looking for a place to stay near the park, here are some of the best hotels to book. The Best Western Plus Ruby’s Inn is less than 10 minutes from Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park and offers comfortable accommodations and a variety of amenities.
The Holiday Inn Express & Suites Kanab is about 30 minutes from the park and offers a complimentary hot breakfast buffet and an outdoor pool. And the Comfort Inn & Suites Zion National Park South Entrance, about an hour from Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park, offers complimentary hot breakfast and convenient access to Zion National Park.
9. Kodachrome Basin State Park
Kodachrome Basin State Park is a beautiful place to visit in southern Utah. The park is best known for its stunning red rock formations and panoramic views. Some of the best hiking trails in the area can be found here and with several picnic areas and campgrounds.
Kodachrome Basin is the perfect place to explore if you want an outdoor adventure. The park is located near the town of Cannonville, which is about an hour from Bryce Canyon National Park. Kodachrome Basin is a great place to hike, camp, and enjoy the outdoors.
10. Goblin Valley State Park
Goblin Valley State Park is one of Utah’s most unique and visually stunning parks. The park is located in the San Rafael Swell and is best known for its extraordinary Goblin-like rock formations. Hiking is one of the most popular activities in the park, as numerous trails wind through the picturesque landscape.
Camping is also popular, as several campgrounds are within the park’s boundaries. Fishing is another popular pastime, as Goblin Valley State Park has several ponds and streams. Regardless of how you spend your time, Goblin Valley State Park will create lasting memories.
Goblin Valley State Park is located in Emery County, Utah. It is known for its unusual rock formations and as a haven for hikers, campers, and nature lovers. The park offers a variety of tours, including the Goblin Valley Tour, the Hoodoos Tour, the Waterfall Tour, and the Comb Ridge Tour.
The Hampton Inn & Suites Moab is one of the nearby hotels to book. It is only a short drive from the park and offers comfortable accommodations and a variety of amenities. The Best Western Plus Ruby’s Inn in Bryce is another excellent option for lodging near Goblin Valley State Park.
This hotel offers an on-site restaurant, fitness center, and complimentary breakfast. For a more luxurious stay, the Red Mountain Resort in Utah is just a short drive from Goblin Valley State Park and offers beautiful views of the nearby red rock.
Goblin Valley State Park is a great place to explore, but you should remember a few things when packing for your visit. First, bring plenty of water and snacks, as the park lacks services. Wear comfortable shoes as you will be doing a lot of walking and bring a hat and sunscreen as little shade is within the park.
See Related: Cheap Places to Travel
11. Sand Hollow State Park
Sand Hollow State Park is a great place to visit if you want to get away from it all and enjoy some time in nature. The park is in Hurricane and features a beautiful lake perfect for swimming, fishing, or boating.
There are also plenty of hiking and biking trails to explore the area and several camping options if you want to make a weekend of it. No matter your interests, Sand Hollow State Park is sure to have something for everyone. So be sure to check it out the next time you’re in Utah.
There are several excellent hotels near Sand Hollow State Park in Utah. Some of the best include the Holiday Inn Express in Hurricane, the Hampton Inn in St. George, and Springdale’s Best Western Zion Park Inn.
Sand Hollow State Park is a great place to spend a day, but it can get boiling, so bring plenty of water, sunscreen, and hats. No food options are inside the park, so bring your snacks and lunch. And since you’ll be spending most of your time outdoors, wearing comfortable shoes is a good idea.
12. Cedar Breaks National Monument
Cedar Breaks National Monument is a beautiful park located in Utah. It offers stunning views of the red rock canyon and is a great place to visit for a nature hike or picnic. Cedar Breaks is especially lovely in the fall when the leaves of the aspen trees turn golden.
There are also several campsites available if you want to stay overnight. The grounds are first-come, first-serve, so arrive early if you plan to spend the night. Cedar Breaks is a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and enjoy time surrounded by nature. The best hotels near Cedar Breaks National Monument are the Holiday Inn Express, the Comfort Inn, and the Best Western.
See Related: Things to Do in St. George, Utah
13. Snow Canyon State Park
Snow Canyon State Park is one of the best parks in Utah to visit. It offers beautiful landscapes and plenty of activities for visitors to enjoy. Some of the activities available at Snow Canyon State Park include hiking, biking, horseback riding, and camping.
The park is also home to wildlife, including deer, rabbits, and lizards. Snow Canyon State Park is a great place to visit to enjoy the outdoors and beautiful scenery. So if you’re ever in Utah, add Snow Canyon State Park to your list of places to see.
Visitors to the park can enjoy hiking, biking, and camping. Several tours are available, including the dinosaur tracks, Lava Tubes, and geology tours.
Snow Canyon State Park is a beautiful place to explore, and there are a few things you should bring with you to make the most of your visit! First, sunscreen is necessary – the sun can be deceptively intense at high altitudes. Second, hats and sunglasses will help keep you comfortable in the bright sunlight.
Third, water bottles are essential for staying hydrated – plenty of water fountains around the park, but having your supply is always good. Fourth, snacks are crucial for keeping your energy levels up as you hike and explore. And finally, comfortable shoes are a must – you’ll be doing a lot of walking.
Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is a must-see for anyone visiting Utah. The park is located on the Utah-Arizona border and is known for its impressive sandstone buttes and mesas. Hiking and photography are popular activities in the park, and visitors can also take guided tours of the area.
Monument Valley is one of Utah’s most popular tourist destinations, and it’s easy to see why. Regardless of how you plan to explore Monument Valley, there are a few things that you should always bring with you.
Make sure to wear comfortable shoes. Monument Valley is full of sand and rocks, so flip-flops are not recommended. By following these tips, you can ensure that your visit to Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is safe and enjoyable.
There are several great hotel options near Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. The View Hotel and Campground is an excellent option, with incredible valley views. The Goulding’s Lodge is another popular choice, offering guests access to cultural events and traditional Navajo cuisine.
See Related: Best Things to Do in Nephi Utah
15. Goosenecks State Park
Goosenecks State Park is located in the San Juan County of southeastern Utah. The park is best known for its highly winding and steep-sided canyons. The park was established in 1996 and covered an area of 4,717 acres. The park’s namesake feature is a series of tight bends in the San Juan River known as the gooseneck popular.
Goosenecks State Park is great for hiking, camping, picnicking, stargazing, and wildlife viewing. The park also has several interesting geological features, such as the Goosenecks Overlook and the Mexican Hat Rock Formation. Visitors to Goosenecks State Park will be amazed by its stunning landscape and unique geology.
There are plenty of fantastic hotels near Goosenecks State Park in Utah. Our favorites include the Hotel Rodeway Inn & Suites in Blanding, the Holiday Inn Express in Mexican Hat, and The Inn of Escalante.
16. Natural Bridges National Monument
Natural Bridges National Monument is one of the best parks in Utah to visit. It is home to some of the most beautiful natural bridges globally. The park is also great for hiking, camping, and biking. Natural Bridges National Monument is located in southeastern Utah, near Monticello.
The monument is open year-round, and there are no entrance fees. Hiking is one of the most popular activities in the monument, and there are several trails of varying lengths and difficulty levels. Camping is also allowed in the memorial, and there are two developed campgrounds with flush toilets and showers.
Biking is another excellent way to explore the monument, and bikes are permitted on all roads except for the bridge viewing areas. Some of the best hotels near the monument include the Hampton Inn & Suites in Monticello and the Super 8 in Fruita.
You can also find some great camping spots near the monument, so if you’re looking to get away from it all for a while, this is the place to go.
See Related: How to Pack For a Camping Trip
17. Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area
Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area is one of the best parks in Utah to visit. It’s well known for its stunning red rock cliffs and excellent fishing opportunities.
You can also enjoy kayaking, hiking, and camping here. Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area is in northeastern Utah, adjacent to the Flaming Gorge Reservoir.
The reservoir is a popular spot for boating and fishing, and the park has several boat ramps and marinas. The hiking trails offer stunning views of the gorge, and the camping sites are well-equipped and spacious.
If you’re looking for a breathtaking place to explore, Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area is worth visiting. The best hotels near Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area are The Redstone Inn & Suites, The Lodge at Red Canyon, and The Canyons Boutique Hotel.
18. Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument is one of the best parks in Utah to visit. The park is known for its stunning scenery and abundance of outdoor activities.
Visitors can explore the vast landscape on foot, by bike, or in a vehicle. Many hiking trails lead through the park’s varied terrain, including canyons, deserts, and forests. If you’re looking for a place to stay near the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument, check out some of the best hotels in the area.
The Best Western Bryce Canyon Inn is excellent for comfortable and affordable accommodations. The inn offers guests a variety of amenities, including a heated pool, hot tub, and free Wi-Fi.
If you’re looking for something a little more luxurious, the Amangiri Resort is a great option. The resort offers stunning views of the canyon and a variety of amenities, including a spa, fitness center, and pool.
See Related: Best Day Trips from Salt Lake City, Utah
19. Dinosaur National Monument
Dinosaur National Monument is a U.S. National Monument located on the Colorado-Utah border. The monument is world-renowned for its fossils, dating back to the Late Cretaceous period. In addition to its fossil collections, the memorial contains a wealth of other geological and archaeological resources.
The monument is adjacent to the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument, which protects some of the most remote and pristine areas of the American West. Visitors to Dinosaur National Monument can hike, camp, fish, and enjoy various other outdoor activities. The monument also offers several educational programs about geology, paleontology, and history.
When visiting Dinosaur National Monument in Utah, some things to bring include sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, snacks, water, and comfortable walking shoes.
How many parks are there in Utah?
There are 5 Utah national parks and 43 state parks and recreation areas.
What is the most famous park in Utah?
Zion National Park – it’s also the most popular tourist attraction in the state.
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- About the Author
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Kyle Kroeger is the Founder and Owner of ViaTravelers.com. He is a full-time traveler and entrepreneur. Kyle started ViaTravelers.com to help travelers experience a fully immersive cultural experience as he did initially living in Italy. He’s a converted finance nerd and Excel jockey turned world wanderer (and may try to get lost on purpose). After visiting 12 countries and 13 national parks in a year, he was devoted to creating and telling stories like he’d heard.
Plus, after spending more time on airplanes and packing, he’s learned some incredible travel hacks over time as he earned over 1 million Chase Ultimate Rewards points in under a year, helping him maximize experiences as much as possible to discover the true meaning of travel.
He loves listening to local stories from around the world and sharing his experiences traveling the globe. He loves travel so much that he moved from his hometown of Minneapolis to Amsterdam with his small family to travel Europe full-time.