I have asked several groups of people recently about their favorite things to do in Utah. The answers were beautifully varied. In my family the answers included riding bikes on the cobblestone sidewalk outside the Lehi Legacy Center, paragliding at the Point of the Mountain, and swimming at Sand Hollow State Park. Followers on the A Local Wander Facebook page were reflective in their answers, sharing how getting up into the mountains or out to wander in the desert brings peace and reminds them that they are home.
As for me, I could not possible narrow my favorite activity in Utah down to just one thing. I am a transplant here and from Day 1 have been running from one unbelievable activity to the next with wild abandon and complete awe. Those of us lucky enough to call Utah home are beyond fortunate to have hundreds of bucket list worthy adventures right outside our front door. (Indeed, the inspiration behind "A Local Wander")
To help plan your next weekend excursion, fill the summer calendar, or give you ideas for an epic western vacation, here is a beginning list of 100 favorite things to do in Utah...
- The Pleasant Grove "G" Our first & favorite Mountain Letter hike.
- The Narrows at Zion Read here about the beauty, and also the drawbacks, of this excursion.
- Angel's Landing Backpacking Detours cautions to make sure you bring your common sense.
- The Wave Technically in AZ, but you do start on our side of the border-and it's AMAZING!
- And these 7 family-friendly hikes located near major tourist destinations.
Parks & Playgrounds (12-16)
- Neptune Park in Saratoga Springs
- Discovery Park in Pleasant Grove
- Pioneer Park in St. George
- Marble Park in Tremonton Iron farm implements aren't intended to be this cool!
- Highland Town Center Splash Pad Go at dinnertime and you'll have it all to yourself!
- Springville Splash Pad We are fans of the long stream splash pads.
- Diamond Hot Springs (Officially, Fifth Water Hot Springs)
- Lindon Aquatics Center It isn't the biggest Utah pool, but there is something for everyone in the family.
- Goblin Valley Take your frisbees, do some climbing and remember lots of water!
- Antelope Island Let Flashpacker Family show you 35 things you need to see there!
- Snow Canyon So much like Zion, without the crowds.
- Flight Park State Recreation Area Be brave and try tandem flying, or just spend an afternoon watching paragliders take off and land from the Point of the Mountain.
- Sand Hollow You can cliff jump while I watch the sailboats.
- Hike to Delicate Arch
- Fresh fruit pies at Capitol Reef
- Night Hiking at Bryce Canyon
- Cedar Breaks National Monument A GREAT alternative to it's big brother, Bryce Canyon
- Golden Spike National Historic Site
- Stand in the dark at Timp Caves
- Play Croquet (or go 4-Wheeling) in Little Sahara
Want to hit all 5 of Utah's National Park? Check out this road-trip itinerary.
These tips will help with avoiding the national park crowds.
|Photo credit: Troy Daniels|
- Stewart Falls on the Alpine Loop, Utah County
- Battle Creek Falls in Pleasant Grove
- Upper Provo River Falls on Mirror Lake Highway
- Kanarraville Falls Erin at Travel Thru History grew up in southern Utah & put this at the top of her list!
- Riding the train at This Is the Place Heritage Park
- Historic Re-enactments at Camp Floyd
- Pretending to be pioneers at Cove Fort
- Meeting your ancestors at the Family Search Discovery Center
- American West Heritage Center An interactive historical farm in northern Utah. Read about their blonde bison at Francia Benson Gone Wild.
- Listen to the roar of a prehistoric creature at Ogden Eccles Dinosaur Park
- Walk back in time at the Museum of Ancient Life, Thanksgiving Point
- Watch fossils being uncovered at the USU Eastern Prehistoric Museum, Price
- Get hands-on like paleontologists at the Utah Field House of Natural History, Vernal
- Watch a live animal show at the Monte L. Bean Life Science Museum
- See the lion cubs at Hogle Zoo
- Check out a Jr. Ranger Backpack at the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge
- Feed the pelicans at Tracy Aviary
- Walk the rope bridge at The Living Planet Aquarium
On the Water (58-62)
- Canoe the Green River SKJ Travel shares the ups & downs of a 5-day trip
- Float the Provo River
- Houseboat on Lake Powell
- Play in Caribbean blue water at Bear Lake. The Things I Love Most has shared great family vacation ideas.
- Pitch a tent in the sand (for free) at Swasey's Beach, Green River
- Stay in a yurt
- Camp for free on BLM & National Forest land.
- Sleep in a pioneer covered wagon at Conestoga Ranch
- Learn about Utah's changing landscape at the Natural History Museum of Utah
- Help print an old-time newspaper at the Crandall Historical Printing Press Museum
- Experience night at the museum at the Hutchings Museum, Lehi
- See first-hand important LDS Church artifacts at the Church History Museum
- Use your imagination at Discovery Gateway
- Crawl inside a monkey head at the Museum of Natural Curiosity
- Drive like it's speed week at K1 Speed
Rock Hounding & Fossil Hunting (77-82)
- Take a swing at cracking open a rock at the Dugway Geode Beds
- Find a jewel on Topaz Mountain
- Scoop up a handful of black rock on Obsidian Hill
- Find something shiny at the St. George Gypsum Mines
- Dig for ancient sea fossils in Delta
Fairs & Festivals (83-90)
- Explain a kilt to the kids at the Payson Scottish Festival
- Eat strawberries and cream, for free, for 6 days at Pleasant Grove Strawberry Days
- Wear your patriotism on your sleeve at the America's Freedom Festival
- Wave at an apostle at the Days of '47 Parade
- Chase a hot air balloon at Autumn Aloft, Park City
- People watch at Salt Lake Comic Con First-timer? Adrian's Crazy Life will put your nerves at ease.
- Stuff bags with candy at Payson Onion Days (the key is to sit in the 2 block stretch of old downtown)
Can't pick one favorite town festival?
Utah Mom Connection has put together a list of ALL of them!
Concerts, Movies, & Theatres (91-95)
- The Drive In. No idea we had these in Utah? Check out these Drive In Movie locations.
- Spread out a blanket and see a show at the Scera Shell
- Enjoy a musical at Tuacahn's Red Rock Amphitheatre
- Monday night concerts at Alpine In the Park. Check out A Year of Family Home Evenings for the summer schedule.
Relax in Nature (96-97)
- Walk the boardwalk at Rock Cliff Recreation Area, Jordanelle
- Stroll through the flowers at Central Utah Garden, Orem
- 8 Day Trip Ideas in Northern Utah
- 20 Free Things to do in St. George
- 25 Fun Things to Do at the Bonneville Salt Flats
What are your favorite things to do in Utah?
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