7 day trips less than two hours from springdale, utah, lodging near Zion National Park

7 Day Trips Less Than Two Hours From Springdale, Utah

by | Apr 30, 2024

When you book a stay at Zion Wildflower Resort, you don’t have to go far to find an endless array of activities. At the resort, you’ll find a resort-style swimming pool, complimentary bikes, yard games, a playground, campfires, and more. As a popular choice for lodging near Zion National Park, you’ll also enjoy quick and easy access to the park. This means more time to spend hiking Zion’s famous trails or enjoying a leisurely cruise through the park.

But if you find yourself with extra time on your trip, or you’ve already visited Zion a few times and want to explore more of what Southern Utah has to offer, you’re in luck. There are tons of day trips just a short drive from Zion. If you’re ready to start planning your next stay in a luxury hotel near Zion National Park, keep reading to learn about seven awesome day trips less than two hours from Springdale, Utah.

1. Glen Canyon National Recreation Area and Lake Powell

If you’re visiting Zion National Park in the heat of summer, a day trip that offers a chance to cool off will sound more than ideal. Luckily, Lake Powell is less than 2 hours away.

Lake Powell, located in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, straddles the border of Utah and Arizona. It is the second-largest man-made reservoir in the nation, behind only Lake Mead. With steep sandstone cliffs rising on nearly every edge of the lake and stunning geological formations visible from the water, it’s a one-of-a-kind adventure that is best explored by boat.

Besides boating and swimming, you can also enjoy world-class fishing for trout, stripers, and more. Glen Canyon National Recreation Area is home to plenty of scenic drives, mountain biking trails, hiking, and more.

2. Bryce Canyon National Park

Just under an hour and a half from Zion is a lesser-known national park that many visitors to the area never get the chance to discover. Known for its striking geological formations and natural beauty, Bryce Canyon National Park is a unique and beautiful day trip. 

If you think that their close proximity to one another means that the two parks have similar scenery, think again. In Bryce Canyon, you’ll find one popular sight not found in Zion; hoodoos. Hoodoos are stone formations that resemble stacks of rocks. They’re formed by frost weathering and erosion, with thousands of them in massive clusters throughout the park. Wind and water also formed giant natural amphitheaters, arches, and other geological formations.

Bryce Canyon is quite a bit smaller than Zion, at around 35,000 acres. But it offers plenty of hiking trails and a higher elevation than the more popular park, making it a unique side trip. Hop on the scenic drive and you can easily access 13 viewpoints, perfect for taking in the sights and snapping some photographs.

3. Snow Canyon State Park

There are plenty of delicious restaurants and luxury shopping options in Springdale. But if you’re looking to mix it up during a day off from exploring Zion, a side trip to St. George is less than an hour away. And while you’re there, you can also pop into one of Utah’s treasured state parks, Snow Canyon.

Don’t let the name fool you; Snow Canyon State Park enjoys a mild climate and rarely sees snow. While it may be on the small side, it boasts 16 miles of gorgeous hiking trails, stunning red rock cliffs, rock climbing, horseback riding, biking, and more. Be sure to look out for the black lava rock caps that top many of the ridges and cliff sides in the park.

4. Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

Looking for a side trip that’s easily explored in just a half-day? Look no further than Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. But don’t let its closeness fool you; while you can plan a visit within less than a day, it would take weeks or more to explore every corner of this massive treasure.

A national monument that’s as large as the state of Delaware, Grand Staircase-Escalante offers a wealth of unspoiled wilderness and a peek into the history of the ancient animals and people that once called the region home.

The monument was created fairly recently, with President Bill Clinton establishing the property in 1996. What’s really interesting about Grand Staircase-Escalante is that the region was the last portion of the lower 48 states to be mapped. The monument remains largely remote and undeveloped, making it the perfect place to get back to nature.

5. Quail Creek State Park

Another popular Utah state park that’s under an hour from Zion is Quail Creek State Park. With a warm water reservoir and a mild winter climate, the park offers year-round boating, fishing, hiking, and more. 

Fishing enthusiasts will enjoy the variety of species in the stocked reservoir, including rainbow trout, bullhead catfish, crappie, catfish, largemouth bass, and more.

6. Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park

While Zion might see snow in the higher elevations, it isn’t exactly ideal for many winter sports. But there is a park just 30 minutes away where you can go sledding all year long. Sounds crazy? Then it’s time for a day trip to Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park.

Coral Pink Sand Dunes covers more than 3,700 acres, much of which is covered in pink-hued sand dunes formed between 10,000 and 15,000 years ago when the Navajo sandstone cliffs were slowly eroded by wind and water. If sledding down the dunes isn’t your style, you can also enjoy hiking and off-roading with ATVs and UTVs.

7. North Rim of the Grand Canyon

Technically this day trip will take a bit longer than 2 hours to get to. But it’s worth a little extra driving. The North Rim of the Grand Canyon offers all of the awe-inspiring beauty of the more popular South Rim but with just a fraction of the famous crowds.

With overlooks, a visitors center, and plenty of hiking, it’s a wonderful way to enjoy this special national park without taking too much time away from your visit to Zion!

Planning a Stay in Lodging Near Zion National Park

From stunning national parks to overlooked state parks, there’s no shortage of day trips to choose from during your stay at Zion Wildflower Resort. Ready to start planning your stay in lodging near Zion National Park? Book your stay in a canvas glamping tent, bungalow, or covered wagon today!

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