No plane ticket required.
It’s that time of year again… The sun is shining, school is out and you need to go on an adventure. While you are itching to use some vacation days, exploring can lose its magic when you find yourself in a destination rut.
Utah has hundreds of adventure-worthy destinations. But travelers from all over the world know that as well, leading to packed trails and busy campgrounds.
Finding a new place that still holds wonder and beauty means dipping into the hidden gems only travel junkies visit. So, while old classics are always fun, maybe leave Arches for another time and try someplace new.
Here’s our list of top destinations that don’t make you say, “ugh, again?”
Coral Pink Sand Dunes
Southern Utah has many beautiful wonders, but the coral pink sand dunes will make you feel like you’ve travelled to a land of Arabian nights with its shifting sand. A photographer’s dream, these dunes catch the light to create the coral sheen they are famous for. You can book a campground for an overnight trip. You can hike the dunes or explore the nearby South Fork Indian Canyon to see pictographs. Not a fan of hiking? You can rent off-road vehicles to drive around freely throughout the park for a new kind of adventure.
Escalante National Monument
Famous for the steps or “Escalante” this destination has everything from incredible views, a beautiful lake, and miles of hikes. Rent a campground and choose between exploring the slot canyons, seeing the petrified forest, the falls, and much more. With fishing, kayaks, paddleboards, and canoes you can enjoy this destination even when the temperatures are high.
This eastern Utah gem will make your imagination go wild with fanciful rock formations. Fantasy Canyon is easily accessible, even with kids, and you can enjoy exploring the nooks and crannies that cover the canyon walls.
Want to explore a new state without spending days in the car? With only a two-hour drive from the Utah border, discover a steep, one-mile hike that leads you to a spectacular turquoise lake. Found in the Glenwood Canyon, the Hanging Lake has nearby lodging, hot springs, river rafting and more.