Exploring Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park

Exploring Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park

It’s taken me a little longer to catch up on blog posts about our vacation.  Between assimilating back into real life NJ, being sick, and preparation for the Philadelphia marathon weekend, it’s been busy.

Anyway, one of the best days my husband and I had was at Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park.

Both Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park are located in Southwestern Utah. We knew we wanted to go to both Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park but timing-wise, it wasn’t going to work out to spend a lot of time at both. We decided to drive through Bryce Canyon and look out and then spend a little more time in Zion National Park.   They aren’t too far apart, so you are able to do both in one day.

Personally, we could both spend a lot of time in either.  Both Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park are beautiful. Hopefully, sometime in the future, we will be able to go back and explore.

Bryce Canyon National Park: 

While visiting Bryce Canyon, we went out to Rainbow point and walked around.  There is a 10-mile rim trail hike you can do at Bryce Canyon and look over the Hoodoo Ampethetiar.  If we had more time, we would have done it! Bryce Canyon National Park is as beautiful as the Grand Canyon.

Bryce Canyon park itself is easily driveable.  From the entrance of Bryce Canyon, it’s about an 18-mile drive to the tip of Rainbow Point, and there are several spots and opportunities for photos at Bryce Canyon.

Zion National Park:

Like Bryce Canyon, we could spend days in Zion National Park.  Before arriving, we planned to do a longer hike at Zion National Park but quickly realized timing would not allow us too.

We still wanted to get back to Colorado and spend a few days there too!  When we arrived at Zion National Park, it was crowded and it was hard to even find parking.  By the time we were able to park at Zion National Park and get out of the car, it was nearly 1 pm. My recommendation for Zion National Park is getting there early.

We could have begun the hike at Zion National Park but it was a lengthy one and I didn’t want to be hiking at dark.  You had to take a bus to a certain location, then start, then take the bus back t0 the entrance of Zion National Park.  It was just a lot and if you’ve ever seen me hiking hangry…well…my husband would have left me there. Hiking in Zion National Park

So we just decided to explore Zion National Park and climb up to our own rock.  We didn’t have an exact trail or route but it was more fun that way.  We pulled over at a random spot at Zion National Park and just hiked.  Even with hundreds of people inside Zion National Park, we didn’t run into anyone.

Hiking in Zion National Park
Sitting in a rock seat

Hiking away from everyone was much better for us anyway.  If you ever go to Zion National Park, don’t be afraid to just stop and explore. Hiking in Zion National Park

You don’t need a trail or destination.  And yes, we actually made it up an entire rock.  You can see the main road of Zion National Park in the background.

To be honest, both Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park were two of my favorite spots.  Eventually, my husband and I plan to go back.  You could spend days, weeks, and even months just exploring.

road trip through colorado

Posts from Vacation:
Hiking Flagstaff Mountain in Boulder

Haunted Half Marathon 5k (19:40)
Two Weeks of Training: Easy Miles Out West

Sams 3 Diner (Denver)
New Castle Diner (Colorado)

Questions for you:

Where is your favorite place to hike?

Have you ever been to Zion or Bryce Canyon? 



  1. I’ve been to both – 2x to Bryce! In Bryce we also hiked in slot canyons – coolest thing ever!

  2. I did all 5 National Parks in Utah in the Summer of 2016 — and ran the Bryce Canyon half (as you know). I loved all the parks for various reasons. It is beautiful out there!!

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