Travel Guide: Utah State

Utah is a state located in western United States; bordered by Colorado to the east, Wyoming to the northeast, Idaho to the north, Arizona to the south, and Nevada to the west. Utah is best known for being the only state with a Mormon majority and "The Mighty 5", its famous national parks. Whether you’re looking for memorable family fun, an adrenaline rush, the solace of nature or a combination of all three, you’re sure to discover an unforgettable experience that can only be found in Utah.

EXPLORER FACTS

  1. The Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City took 40 years to complete.
  2. Rainbow Bridge, Nature's abstract sculpture carved of solid sandstone, is the world's largest natural-rock span. It stands 278 feet wide and 309 feet high.
  3. The name Utah comes from the Native American Ute tribe and means people of the mountains.
  4. Utah has seven national monuments: Cedar Breaks, Natural Bridges, Dinosaur, Rainbow Bridge, Grand Staircase-Escalante, Timpanogos Cave and Hovenweep.
  5. Kanab is known as Utah's Little Hollywood because of the large number of motion pictures that are filmed in the area.

CITIES TO VISIT

Salt Lake City | The capital and most populous city of Utah. This state capital is a mixture of churches, restaurants and mountains! Salt Lake City sits in a mountain bowl 4,300 feet up, with immediate access to all forms of adventure: four world-class ski resorts; a lineup of slanty canyons to the east with a hundred options for hiking, biking, climbing and camping; a Great Salty Lake to the west for boating and floating; and even golf.

Moab | A small town located in eastern Utah that attracts large numbers of tourist every year. Its easy access to Arches and Canyonlands National Parks, Dead Horse Point State Park, the Colorado River, three scenic byways, and thousands of square miles of incredible red rock landscapes make it one of the most sought-after destinations in the American Southwest.

Kanab | Referred to by the locals as "Little Hollywood" due to its history as a filming location for mostly western movies and television series, this small town packs quite a punch. It's situated in the "Grand Circle" just north of the Arizona state line, meaning it's in the dead center of Zion National, Bryce CanyonGrand Canyon National Parks, state parks, monuments and recreational areas.

St. George | The hub of southern Utah and Utah's Dixie, a nickname given to the area when Mormon pioneers grew cotton in the warm climate, St. George is the seventh largest city in Utah. It's a place offering big city amenities but with small town feel. With its year-round warm weather, excellent golf courses, and proximity to Zion National Park, St. George has become one of Utah's top destinations.

NATURAL WONDERS

Arches National Park | Known for its' remarkable natural red sandstone arches and over 2,000 catalogued arches, the park offers the largest concentration of natural arches in the world. Towering spires, fins and balanced rocks complement the arches, create a remarkable assortment of landforms in a relatively small area.

Canyonlands National Park | A unique destination full of spires, buttes, arches, rivers and most spectacular of all, vast canyons. This park is home to The Needles, Maze and Island of the Sky districts. Each of which offers its own unique scenery and vastness.

Capitol Reef National Park | The Waterpocket Fold, a 100-mile long wrinkle in the earth's crust known as a monocline, extends from nearby Thousand Lakes Mountain to the Colorado River (now Lake Powell). This park was established to protect this grand and colorful geologic feature, as well as its unique historical and cultural history found in the area.

Bryce Canyon National Park | Famous for its worldly unique geology, consisting of a series of horseshoe-shaped amphitheaters carved from the eastern edge of the Paunsaugunt Plateau in southern Utah. The forces of mother nature have shaped its colorful limestone rock of the Claron Formation into bizarre shapes including slot canyons, windows, fins, and spires called hoodoos.

Zion National Park | Characterized by its high plateaus, a maze of narrow, deep, sandstone canyons and striking rock towers and mesas. Zion Canyon is the largest and most visited canyon in the park. The North Fork of the Virgin River has also carved a spectacular gorge, with canyon walls in most places rising 2000-3000 feet above the canyon floor.

THINGS TO DO IN UTAH

  1. Rather then sink or swim, float on the waters of the Great Salt Lake in Utah's state capital.
  2. Gaze up at the 19th Century built Mormon Temple, but only gaze because if you're not Mormon you can't enter apparently.
  3. Walk through Wall Street, not New York's but rather Bryce Canyon's, it'll leave you speechless!
  4. See Delicate Arch in person, you know that thing you keep seeing on Utah license plates.
  5. Hike knee deep in water while trying not to slip on rocks through The Narrows of Zion National Park. I know it might sound scary but it's the thrill of a lifetime.