Hiking

A wonderland of soaring sandstone cliffs, surreal hoodoos and 240 million years of geological history on display, Utah is a paradise for hikers of all levels.

Angels Landing Zion's iconic ascent – with chains and precipitous drop-offs – was cut into the cliffs in 1926.

Fiery Furnace Tour the third level of hell in this devilish maze of rock and stone.

The Narrows An incredible in-the-river experience, hiking and wading 16 miles down Zion's most impressive canyon.

Fairyland Loop Explore a pastel dream of towering hoodoos and martian landscapes on this challenging day hike.

Chesler Park Head into Utah's wilderness for a long tromp past desert wonderment on this Canyonlands fave.

West Rim Two-day backpacking trip from high plateaus to Zion's canyon floor, with solitude and big views.

Hickman Bridge Cruise up from Capitol Reef’s Fremont River to this gorgeous natural bridge.

Biking

The scenic slickrock playground outside Moab turned Utah into a mountain-biking hub decades ago.

Slickrock This moonscape ride near Moab is a roller-coaster of descents, curves and lung-busting cliffside climbs.

The Whole Enchilada Combine rides for an all-in-one descent to some of Moab’s most distinctive riding features.

White Rim Road Go multiday on one of the continent’s best mountain bike tours.

Gooseberry Mesa Technical slickrock fun with views back toward Zion.

Thunder Mountain Trail For great red canyon riding try this buffed-out trail just outside Bryce.

Canyoneering & Climbing

Squeezing your way through the twists and turns of a dark slot canyon or ascending a sheer, multipitch spire above the desert floor are just some of the adrenaline-fueled ways to gain a new perspective on the planet.

The Subway Swim and rappel your way to one of Zion's most impressive geological formations.

Keyhole An excellent beginner's canyon in Zion, with thrills, watery chills and the occasional spill.

Dry Fork Slot Canyons Explore sandstone slot canyons for a taste of exquisitely sculpted landscape in remote Grand Staircase–Escalante.

Cohab Canyon Ascend Capitol Reef’s Waterpocket Fold for secret slot canyons and amazing views.

Castle Valley Challenge your way up Castleton and other iconic towers outside of Moab.

Indian Creek The world's best crack climbing tests you with vertical lines in a sea of sandstone.

The Maze Go beyond the tourist track in the Canyonlands' forsaken district.

San Rafael Swell Don't get lost in the million and one slot canyons ripping through this reef-like rise.

Cultural Sites

Observe the traces of the Native Americans who have lived here throughout the centuries, from the Ancestral Puebloans and Fremont people to the Ute, Navajo, Pueblo and Southern Paiute.

Parowan Gap Unusual petroglyphs, among the region's oldest etchings, date back as far as the Fremont people.

Newspaper Rock Take a read through history at this ancient media hub.

Horseshoe Canyon Enjoy the evocative and expressionistic petroglyphs at Utah’s top spot.

Anasazi State Park Museum Offers up fascinating artifacts from the Coombs site, dating back to AD 1130.

Water Adventures

The desert may be arid, but water plays a critical role in shaping the landscape here. Ride the rapids or float along in an inner tube while contemplating its importance.

Green River Look to the sky as you paddle flatwater stretches of the Green River.

Cataract Canyon Rip through class IV and V rapids on one of America’s hallmark stretches of white water.

Lower Calf Creek Swim in the emerald pool beneath this ribbon-like cascade.

Mossy Cave Trail A river runs through this Bryce Canyon hike.

Willis Creek A great family-friendly slot hike that follows a flowing creek – wear water shoes or sandals.

Virgin River Grab an inner tube to beat the summer heat with a float downstream in Springdale.

Pool Parties Vegas pool clubs are just another example of Sin City–style decadence.

Film Locations

From glowing red buttes to scrubby desert plains to the twinkling lights of Vegas, the landscape glows with undeniable cinematic appeal.

Kanab John Wayne, Clint Eastwood and Charlton Heston have all appeared against this classic Western backdrop.

Las Vegas Sin City dominates the big screen in mainstream hits like The Hangover and Ocean's Eleven.

Grafton The ghost town location of the bicycle scene in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

Moab & Around Thelma & Louise and 127 Hours have dramatic scenes from Canyonlands and Dead Horse Point.

Moab Museum of Film & Western Heritage Discover the story lines that have made this area a cinematographer's dream.

Scenic Drives

As amazing as Utah's national parks are, sometimes it's the drive between them you remember most.

Hwy 12 Utah's most stunning stretch of highway wends through canyons, desert slickrock and alpine forest.

White Rim Road Take on one of America’s most iconic 4WD adventures.

Arches Scenic Drive Cruise through Arches for views of balanced rocks, delicate arches and the La Sal Mountains.

Cathedral Valley Loop Bump along Capitol Reef’s desolate backcountry loop.

Hwy 14 The back road from Bryce to Zion climbs to 10,000ft, passing Cedar Breaks National Monument.

Colorado River Scenic Byway Follow the serpentine route of the Colorado River, stopping for hikes near the Fisher Towers.

Bryce Scenic Drive Travel by bike or shuttle for amazing views of the Bryce Amphitheater.

Dramatic Views

Southern Utah is an unfurling tableau of sweeping panoramas that will defy your camera's wide-angled lens.

Observation Point Intensely rewarding hike to the top of Zion Canyon's cliffs, looking out over Angels Landing.

Grand View Point Take in the immensity of the Colorado Plateau at this Canyonland’s overlook.

Landscape Arch Hike far into the backcountry for mind-blowing photo ops at this long-spanning sandstone arch.

Dead Horse Point State Park Revel in the best views of the Colorado River, like, ever.

Bryce Canyon Rim Trail No need to climb – the flat rim trail provides views of hoodoos and bristlecone forests.

Timber Creek Overlook Take in 270-degree views of finger canyons, plateaus, knobby buttes and Arizona on the horizon.

Cedar Breaks National Monument Wildly eroded natural amphitheater where sculpted cliffs and hoodoos glow like neon tie-dye.

Wildlife

With the exception of scurrying lizards, wildlife in the desert tends to be fairly secretive, particularly during the blazing midday heat of summer. That said, if you look closely enough, you can find some unique creatures.

California Condors Biologists recently confirmed a condor couple was raising a chick in a Zion nest, the first-ever documented occurrence in Utah. The condor is the nation's largest bird.

Desert Tortoises A desert tortoise can live for up to 80 years and go for a year without drinking. They live in the Mojave Desert, which intersects with the Colorado Plateau at Zion.

Bighorn Sheep Depicted in rock art throughout the centuries, herds of bighorn sheep still inhabit the rocky terrain of the Canyonlands and Capitol Reef.

Gila Monsters & Roadrunners Some unusual inhabitants rule the roost in sandy Snow Canyon State Park.

Prairie Dogs This threatened species, essential for a healthy ecosystem, is making a comeback in Bryce.

Bald Eagles Keep your eyes to the sky to marvel at the birds of prey that call Utah home. The really big ones are turkey vultures.

Apex Predators There are some top-of-the-food-chain animals here too, including mountain lions and bears.

Cycling

If you prefer a smooth, fast ride or just want to have some two-wheeled fun on a cruiser, try out these classics.

Zion Canyon Shuttle your bike up to the Temple of Sinawava and coast back amid spectacular scenery.

Red Canyon to Bryce Canyon Link two gorgeous parks with fiery hues of sculpted sandstone on this dedicated bike path.

Capitol Reef Head along the scenic drive for cool river views and plenty of sunshine.

Snow Canyon State Park Cycle from St George through red-rock scenery out to this gem of a park.