Southern Utah is home to some truly fantastic bucket list destinations, including the Mighty 5 national parks. These include Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, and Zion. They offer an array of breathtaking topography, wildlife, and adventure that make each a must-see experience.
Here’s the Mighty 5 list for your wanderlust-fix:
Bryce Canyon National Park
Bryce, UT (54 minutes from Zennest, click for directions)
Just a short hop north of Duck Creek are the wildlands of Bryce Canyon. Bryce Amphitheater – a naturally occurring bowl-like terrain – is home to the largest concentration of hoodoos in the world. Visiting Bryce Canyon is a full day of adventuring and the National Park Service offers hiking trails along with the forests of the plateau and through the hoodoos, as well as ranger and astronomy programs. Perhaps even a once-in-a-lifetime full moon hike under the brilliant, starry night sky?
Zion National Park
Springdale, UT (56 minutes from Zennest, click for directions)
You might say this one is right in our backyard. On a clear day, we can see the park and its soaring canyons from Zennest. It is an unforgettable experience filled with massive sandstone cliffs and a diverse group of plants and animals. Follow the paths that ancient native people and pioneers walked through the heart of the park.
Capitol Reef National Park
Capitol Reef offers views of cliffs, canyons, domes, and bridges in the Waterpocket Fold. What is the Waterpocket Fold?! It’s described by the National Parks Service as a “wrinkle on the earth” (a geologic monocline) and it stretches for almost 100 miles. There you will find prehistoric geological formations and amazing hiking trails for both beginners and more advanced adventurers.
Arches National Park
Arches National Park is home to the iconic sandstone arches that grace travel magazines and posters of Americana. The Delicate Arch lies in the east and Landscape Arch can be found at the north end of the park in Devils Garden. The park is 120 square miles of red rock wonderland with 2,000 natural stone arches. Hike the trails and let the formations transport your imagination to prehistoric eras and far away galaxies.
Canyonlands National Park
Canyonlands is filled with a rich indigenous history that stretches back over 10,000 years. Their connections to the lands are still honored there today. The vivid backcountry is filled with educational exploration opportunities.
Adventure awaits you at the five national parks in Utah. It is a truly captivating area with a lifetime of views, endless sky, and natural wonders.