read about Canyonland NP and more Utah places

Unique Places to Visit in Utah

Utah is a land of many wonders and great place to visit any time of the year. From skiing, hiking, boating, star gazing and the United States largest independent film festival, there is something here for everyone.

Visitors can live out a modern day gold panners dream by finding cabins for rent in Utah or you can simply find a cozy place up in the mountains and stay put. Whether active or relaxing, visitors can find amazing things to do in this red rock state.

As you plan out your trip one thing to make sure of is that you assess the distances between the different things you may want to see or do. Although it might look small on a map, Utah is a big and diverse state. Many people find that a mix of staying somewhere in the mountains for a few days intermixed with some active travel to other far flung areas the best way to mix up variety for their stay.

We had to include some of the well-known Utah wonders as it would be hard to go there and not want to at least take a look at those red rock arches. Yet as you plot out your route, we also included some lesser known wonders to help get your off the beaten track too. Most people find that having one nice spot to relax at either the beginning or the end of their trip helps reenergize them the most. The rest of the time you can be seeing all the great state of Utah has to offer.

Here are some attractions to check out:

Arches National Park

Yes, we know it's iconic and yes, we know everyone goes there, but Arches National Park is a true wonder. Try going early in the day to get a head start on the tour buses and if you can, give yourself some time to walk away from the main parking lots. Many people will only have time to drive around the park and get out at the viewpoints. If you can get away from that chaos you will probably have a more memorable experience in the park.

Canyonlands National Park

If you looking to go more remote and get away from the masses, Canyonlands National Park may be of appeal to you. Known for dramatic desert landscapes carved by the Colorado River, this is the place to get away from it all. Of note is the towering rock pinnacle formation called The Needles. Make sure you stop into Island in the Sky Visitor Center to get all the most up to date information. If you are looking to go off and explore more remote places like The Maze, this is the place to do so.

Enjoy Park City

With its close proximity to Salt Lake City, Park City becomes an easy mountain town to get away to. Park City caters to everyone looking to rough it and camp to those seeking five star accommodations. Home to the Sundance Film Festival, the United States largest independent film festival you can find some good culture here. In 2008 Forbes Traveler Magazine named Park City one of the twenty "prettiest towns" in the USA. So give yourself a chance to spend some time here.

The Trembling Giant or Pando

The next time you want to win at trivia remember that the quaking aspen is one of the world's largest living organisms. Known for their bright yellow leaves in autumn these trees are so much more than that. With a complex underground root system that stretch for miles and miles these trees are all connected. If you are going by here, take a moment to absorb how impressive this tree system really is.

Goblin Valley

If you are finding the price to go into space a bit above your budget, go for the next closet thing, a visit to Goblin Valley. With a bizarre lunar like landscape, Goblin Valley is a mix of large stone 'hoodoos' that have been forming for decades. You can wander through the labyrinth of rock creatures at your leisure but always remember that these are protected. Touching of the rocks is a major violation and you don't want to find yourself in trouble. If you need any more convincing, just pretend they are aliens as a key scene from the movie Galaxy Quest was filmed there.

Thistle Ghost Town

With only a few structures remaining Thistle Ghost Town is a very abandoned ghost town in Fairview. Most of them you can see from the road which makes this an easy stop if you happen to be driving by. Still visible an old school house, a church on the hill and a house half sunk into a bog.

Sun Tunnels

In Wendover you can find these unique sun tunnels. To the quick passerby they may seem like minimalist or abstract pieces of art when in fact they are an astrological gazing station. Four nine foot diameter and eighteen foot long concrete tunnels are pierced by holes of varying sizes. Especially if you are visiting during a winter or summer solstice this place is worth checking out.

Parowan Gap Petroglyphs

Located in Parawan here you can find hundreds of mysterious drawings. Signs from the Hopi and Paiute Native Americans can be seen in a variety of rock interpretations depicting humans, animals and geometric shapes. A stop here is a real life history lesson and look back in time.

As you are planning out your visit to the great state of Utah our advice is to plan to stay as long as you can. There will be so much more for you to explore.

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October 10, 2017

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