More than 5 million people make their way to Zion National Park each year. That’s an increase of about 90 percent over the number of visitors in 2010.
Despite the park’s growing popularity, many first-time visitors to the park don’t do a whole lot of research. They expect a visit to Zion to be similar to that of other national parks. While in some ways it is, Zion’s unique and narrow Lower Canyon, the Zion Canyon Shuttle System, and the park’s location, several hours away from major international airports, means that planning a great visit takes a bit of planning.
Thinking about planning your first visit to Zion Wildflower Resort? Keep reading for the ultimate guide on how to visit Zion like a pro.
Getting to Zion National Park
The first thing you’ll need to know if you want to learn how to visit Zion like a pro is how to get to the park. Zion is located in Southern Utah, outside of the town of Springdale, and a short drive from the city of St. George.
St. George Regional Airport
This city is home to the park’s closest airport, St. George Regional Airport. While this is a small regional airport, you will find daily flights to several Western hubs, including Denver and Salt Lake City.
If you’re looking to get to Zion quickly and without a lot of driving, a connecting flight to St. George is the way to do it. However, flights here are limited and are likely to be more expensive than flights to larger airports.
Harry Reid International Airport
The next closest airport to Zion is Harry Reid International Airport, located in Las Vegas, Nevada. This airport is a great choice for visiting Zion for a few reasons. To start, it’s a large airport, which means that it has hundreds of daily flights from cities across the country and around the world. This means greater flexibility in when you travel, and perhaps a chance to save some money on your flight.
You’ll also find just about every rental car company at this airport, as well as shuttle services. You can either rent a car and drive the two-and-a-half hours to Zion or ride a shuttle bus to get there.
Salt Lake City International Airport
Another option is Salt Lake City International Airport. Like Harry Reid, this is a large airport with hundreds of daily flights. However, this airport is around a four-and-a-half-hour drive from Zion Wildflower Resort. There are still shuttle services to and from the Zion area available at this airport. If you don’t mind the extra driving, this can be another great option for starting your trip.
Decide When to Visit
One thing that the pros know is that when you travel can have a big impact on your visit to Zion National Park.
Most of the park’s annual visitors make their way to the park during the summer months. If this is the only time that you can travel, it’s still possible to plan an amazing trip. Following tips like getting to the park early in the day before the crowds or enjoying some lesser-known hiking trails can help on the busiest days. But if you do have some flexibility, choosing when you travel can help you make the most of your time.
If you can visit any time throughout the year, consider visiting the park during the winter months. While temperatures are cooler and the park does see some winter weather, Zion is largely empty this time of year. This is also the only time of year that you can drive your personal vehicle into the Lower Canyon.
Spring and fall can also be great times to visit the park. If you do choose to visit during the summer, try to plan to be in the park on weekdays, and avoid holidays like the Fourth of July to avoid the worst of the crowds.
Choosing Your Lodging
The last thing that you need to know to learn how to visit Zion like a pro is to pick your lodging carefully. There’s no shortage of Zion resorts to choose from. But many first-time visitors wind up booking chain hotels and motels in St. George. This puts you pretty far from the park, which makes getting to the park early in the day a challenge.
If you want to stay close to Zion, and elevate your entire trip, consider booking a more unique Zion lodging option.
Zion Wildflower Resort is so much more than just a place to sleep each night during your visit. In addition to enjoying quick access to Zion National Park, you’ll also enjoy unique lodging options and a variety of on-site amenities. Cruise around the property on bikes, take in a movie beneath the stars, start up some friendly competition with a game of corn hole, and end your day grilling your own dinner, surrounded by Southern Utah’s stunning natural beauty. While this is a great base camp for your Zion visit, you may want to plan a day or two to relax and enjoy all that the resort has to offer!
How to Visit Zion Like a Pro
Now that you know a few tips on how to visit Zion like a pro, it’s time to start planning your next stay at Zion Wildflower Resort!
Your planning isn’t quite over yet. You’ll still need to choose which of our luxury Zion lodging options you’d like to stay in. The good news here is that there’s no wrong answer!
For a fun glamping experience, you can choose from our Canvas Tents, Grand Mesa Tents, or Covered Wagons. While each of these gives you the experience of sleeping with just a tent roof between you and a sky full of stars, you’ll still enjoy plenty of comfortable amenities, including air conditioning and heat, plush beds, and soft linens. If you prefer something a bit more luxurious, opt for our private Bungalows instead!
If you’re ready to start planning a visit to Zion like a pro, book your next stay at Zion Wildflower Resort today!