Carved by water and time, Zion National Park is a canyon that invites you to participate in the very forces that created it. In the warm climate of southwestern Utah, step into the Virgin River and see the colorful strata that mark the ages rising for thousands of feet up to a narrow strip of sky, then hike to seemingly impossible places and heights.
Zion National Park’s canyons and mesas boast an especially exquisite beauty, even in a state known for dramatic landscapes. Breathtaking Zion Canyon is the centerpiece of this 147,000-acre parkland that protects a spectacular landscape of high plateaus, sheer canyons, and monolithic cliffs.
Opportunities to see and explore Zion National Park abound for people of all ages and abilities, from the scenic byways that slice through the park to the trails that wind through the backcountry. Wildlife watchers can stop at numerous lookouts and search the sky for Zion’s more than 200 bird species, while hikers can strap on their boots and venture out on trails ranging from easy interpretive nature walks to lengthy, challenging hikes through narrow slot canyons. Hiking in Zion National Park is major reason why many people visit.
Rock climbers know Zion National Park for its immense rock walls of red and white Navajo sandstone that rise more than 2,000 feet into the sky. If you look closely, you might even spot some climbers carefully making their way upward, mere specs on a vertical landscape. You may be curious but think such a rock climbing and bouldering experience is out of your reach. Not necessarily – several local guiding outfits offer beginner classes and guided climbs in areas near Zion National Park.
And when you’re done taking in the park’s beauty, you can kick back in one of Zion’s campgrounds and enjoy some family fun while you wind down and plan your activities for the next day. It’s not always easy deciding what to do in such a remarkable environment, but hey, that’s a good problem to have!
Must-See Zion Guide
Hikers of all abilities will find trails that lead to sweeping vistas, clear pools, natural arches, and narrow canyons. Angels Landing and the Narrows are among the best hikes not only in Zion National Park, but frequently make top ten hikes lists across all the national parks. Remember, it’s a good idea to stop in the Visitor Center to consult with a ranger about conditions before setting out. Read more.
It’s not necessary to venture off the road to experience the wonders of Zion National Park. The Zion Canyon Scenic Drive, Zion Park Scenic Byway and Kolob Fingers Road Scenic Byway are three must-drive roads in Zion National Park, including the lesser-visited Kolob Canyons section. Read more.
Hotels and lodges are great, but if you really want to immerse yourself in the natural wonders of Zion National Park, then camping is a great way to do it. Watchman Campground and South Campground are located in Zion Canyon and are quite popular so either make a reservation (Watchman only) or show up early in the day to get a site. Read more.
Birding and Wildlife Watching
With more than 200 species of birds, Zion National Park is a birder’s paradise. The Peregrine falcon, the bald eagle, and the California condor are all found in the 232 square mile sanctuary of Zion, nesting and resting in their native habitat without being disturbed. The threatened Mexican spotted owl also calls Zion home. Read more.
Canyoneering and Rock Climbing
Canyoneering is also one of the more popular things to do in Zion. However, it is a serious endeavor that often involves rappelling, swimming, and other skills. Those interested in canyoneering should contact one of the guide services that teach courses and lead trips into the park. Read more.
Zion National Park
Springdale, Utah 84767