Visiting the Zion National Park

What is Zion National Park?

Zion National Park is extremely popular for its size of 590 km2 and for its main Canyon which is 24 km long and 800m deep. The famous canyon is of a reddish color and consists of Navajo Sandstone. Zion parks highest point is at 2,660m (at Horse Ranch Mountain) and the lowest 1,117m (at Coalpits Walsh).

A particular geography and a variety of life zones allow unique plant and animal diversity in the Park. Zion is home to countless flora, 289 bird species, 75 mammals and 32 reptiles, all this flora and fauna exists thanks to the four life zones: desert, woodland, riparian and coniferous forest. In the Zion National Park you will be able to find canyons, mountains, rivers, buttes, monoliths, slot canyons and natural arches.

Zion National Park is open all year round, summer and the beginning of Autumn are the high seasons and the busiest time to visit. However, you can visit Zion any time of the year just make sure to check the weather forecast and temperatures prior to your visit. Make sure to grab some water and food supplies, comfortable shoes and clothing, a map, a sunscreen, hat or sunglasses. If you are going to stay through the night take a flashlight or a headlamp and all the necessary equipment for camping.

Things to do in the Zion National Park

If you are wondering what are the things to do in Zion National Park — the answer is simple — Sightseeing! The breathtaking beauty of the park will melt anyone’s heart. If you are visiting for the first time, we recommend to start by taking the shuttle bus that will take you directly to the main canyon, you will also have an access to an audio tour introduction, the shuttle will also make some stops at scenic areas and trailheads.

Zion National Park offers a variety of hiking opportunities, from short family-friendly hikes to long demanding hikes leading to remote sightseeing locations. Even if you are an intermediate hiker, you will be able to chose an easy hike with an overwhelming scenery.

The park has 3 camping areas for those who are up for camping, camping grounds are busy most of the time, so make sure to book a spot in advance.

Another activity that might be fun to take up at the park is biking. Even though on some paths it is not allowed to bike, you can still cruise up to the Zion Canyon.

You can also take up horseback riding, fishing, go on tubing excursions, those who are up to some quiet time can simply chill in one of Zion Parks lodges or browse through some local shops in Springdale.

Zion National park is also famous for canyoneering. However, this might be dangerous, before canyoneering make sure to check the weather forecast.

Where to stay in Zion National Park?

There are several accommodation options when it comes to visiting Zion’s National Park. The local town of Springdale is surely the most comfortable option as it is located nearby the famous Zion Canyon, and has many hotels and bed&breakfast options. If you wish to stay in a Lodge we suggest booking The Cliffrose Lodge and for those who are looking for a more expensive and luxurious option we recommend the popular Zion Lodge at the main Zion Canyon.

Those who travel on a budget should check out for accommodations in the nearby towns such as La Verkin, Hurricane or St. George, make sure to read reviews before booking. Take into account that staying further from the Park will result in spending more time on getting there.

Another fun, adventurous and the cheapest option is camping. Zion National Park has 3 main campsites, two of them are located not too far from the south entrance to Springdale. “The Watchman Campground” has 176 camping areas, the prices may vary from $20 to $30 per night, you may reserve a spot in advance from March to November. “The south Campground” has 117 camping areas to offer, and it costs $20 per night for an individual and $50 for a group. “The Lava Point Campground” is located 1-hour drive from Zion Canyon on the Kolob Terrace Road. Pay the camping fare at the self-pay station near the entrance to the campsite.

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