Zion National Park   |  National Park Service

Zion National Park Camping

Zion National Park offers endless adventure. The rugged desert landscape, slender canyons, scenic drives and diverse plants and wildlife appease hikers, mountain bikers, climbers, canyoneers and nature lovers. The park’s year-round camping options keeps adventurers as close to the action as possible. Zion also boasts certification as an International Dark Sky Park, so sleeping under the stars grants first-class stargazing.

Things to Do in Zion National Park Explore Dark Sky Parks

Campgrounds in Zion

Family hiking in Kolob Canyon.

Photo: Marc Piscotty

Kolob Canyon

Backcountry yurts are available at Gooseberry Mesa near Zion National Park.

Photo: Zion Backcountry Glamping

Gooseberry Mesa

Mount Kinesava in Zion National Park.

Photo: Jay Dash

Zion National Park

Backcountry and BLM Camping

Backcountry camping is allowed in Zion National Park with a permit. Dozens of established backcountry sites are throughout the park's 90 miles of trails. For more information on permits, trailhead access and backcountry maps, visit the National Park Service website

Backcountry permits become available roughly three months in advance, so get in early to secure the sites where you want to stay. Permit fees are $20 and the per-person fee is $7 per night.

Dispersed camping is allowed on nearby Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land, contact the St. George Field Office for more details. 

Indoor Lodging and RV Camping

In addition to camping, the area around Zion offers a variety of indoor lodging options, including Zion National Park Lodge, the only in-park accommodation. Many resorts, hotels and inns are also located in nearby Springdale, East Zion and St.George

Visitors may also opt for overnight accommodations in or near the less-trafficked parts of Zion: Cedar City is an excellent gateway to the Kolob Canyons section while Kanab, along U.S. Route 89, is about 30 miles from the East Entrance.

Beyond Watchman and South Campgrounds, there are RV options just outside of the park as well. Consider Zion Crest Campground or Zion River Resort for nearby RV facilities (Read: “Wheeling It: An RV Primer for Utah Family Trips”). 

Glamping abounds at East Zion Resort in nearby Orderville, just be sure to book early.  

Camping Responsibly

Forever Mighty

Venturing beyond the more predictable and sometimes crowded public campgrounds to camp in the backcountry can be a thrilling adventure. Remember to travel responsibly, a shared ethic we call Forever Mighty.

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Leave No Trace

No matter what Utah activities you take on, remember to follow the seven principles of Leave No Trace:

  • Plan ahead and prepare.
  • Travel and camp on durable surfaces.
  • Dispose of waste properly.
  • Leave what you find.
  • Minimize campfire impacts (be careful with fire).
  • Respect wildlife.
  • Be considerate of other visitors.

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When To Visit, Pet Policies & Other Things To Know

  • Summer and autumn are the busy seasons, so if you plan to do any of the park's trademark adventures such as Angels Landing, get out early. Winter and spring are less crowded and a perfect time to visit, as the temperatures are cooler as well.
  • Take advantage of Zion's park shuttle during prime season, June through October.
  • Kolob Canyon is an "open secret" in the park's northwest, home to amazing canyons, caves and rock formations. It’s far less crowded. 
  • On-leash pets are allowed in all public areas, roads, developed areas and campgrounds. Apart from the Pa’rus Trail, where leashed dogs can join you for a walk, pets are not allowed on any other trail or wilderness area.
  • Utah’s National Parks see millions of travelers each year. As you plan your next trip to Zion, consider ways to support its basecamp communities and keep the park Forever Mighty.
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