With a whopping annual average of over 200 days of sunshine, there’s surely no shortage of fun things to do in Salt Lake City, Utah. One of America’s most underrated destinations, the reputation of the city is often tied to the exacting liquor laws of Utah as well as the Mormon culture’s peculiarities. But, guess what? If you think that’s all the city has to offer, you’re missing out on a lot of special things. From stunning architecture to heart-pumping outdoor thrills, there are endless exciting things to do in Salt Lake City.
Need some tips on what to do in Salt Lake City? You might want to check out these insanely cool and fun things to do in Salt Lake City, Utah! Whether you’re going solo or with a bunch of friends, these Salt Lake City travel tips will come in handy for your mountain town getaway.
1. See Lake Temple
Traveling on a tight budget and looking for free things to do in Salt Lake City? Guess what? There are countless of free things to do in Salt Lake City. For everyone’s favorite price of zero dollars, you’ll get to see the impressive 210-foot Lake Temple towering over the Temple Square. While you’re not allowed to go inside, the beautiful grounds of the temple are worth touring. Plus, the church’s architecture is absolutely stunning and outstanding.
2. Explore Temple Square
Speaking of free things to do in Salt Lake City, don’t forget to include a pit-stop to the Temple Square to your travel itinerary. At this three-block plaza, you’ll get to see more than a dozen of Salt Lake City attractions that are all akin to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Anchored by the gorgeous and towering Salt Take Temple, the square is home to tons of other fabulous buildings, such as the Gothic-style Assembly Hall and expansive Tabernacle. As you explore these sites, you’ll get a deep insight into the development and history of the Mormon Church.
Besides the amazing buildings, there are also gurgling fountains and picturesque gardens at the square.
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3. Explore Utah Olympic Park
Built mainly for the Winter Olympics in 2002, the park operates throughout the year and offers a multitude of winter and summer things to do in Salt Lake City. Yep, the Utah Olympic Park screams fun at any time of the time! From extreme tubing and rock climbing to bobsledding and ski jumping, the park is the epicenter for incredible things to do in Salt Lake City, Utah. For an extra dose of adventure, go aerial skiing in the park’s splash pool.
4. A relaxing retreat at Sundance Mountain Resort
Searching for family-friendly attractions and things to do in Salt Lake City? Don’t have a clue on what are the best things to do in Salt Lake City this weekend? Why not spend a weekend or a few days at Sundance Mountain Resort? Nestled perfectly in Mount Timpanogos’s foothills, this family-friendly destination dazzles with breathtaking scenery at every turn. Owned by the famed Robert Redford, the resort is a gorgeous and fabulous year-round destination, with plenty of activities in store for everybody.
Here, guests may go skiing and experience loads of other exciting things to do in Salt Lake City in winter. Furthermore, the resort offers a wide range of activities in summer, including art classes, horseback riding, fishing and biking.
5. Savor the views from Grandeur Peak
No list of the best things to do in Salt Lake City, UT is complete without the inclusion of Grandeur Peak. Trust me, the summit offers some of the best vistas of the Salt Lake Valley and the city. Of course, getting to the top is an exciting as well, passing by gorgeous views, wildflowers and a forest. As for the trail, it’s marked easily, and has an elevation gain of about 2,650 feet. Moreover, it takes around 6.5 miles to complete this hike (back and forth).
6. Pay a visit to Red Butte Garden
They don’t call the Red Butte Garden as one of the top attractions and things to do in Salt Lake City for nothing. After all, it’s a sprawling 21-acre land of developed gardens with miles of hiking and walking trails. Not to mention, it’s, hands down, the Intermountain West’s largest botanical garden. Funded by the community, the garden is beloved for its copious amounts of display gardens, plant collections and special events. Even better, the garden offers a variety of educations programs, such as art exhibits, summer camps, bird watching, horticulture classes as well as Monday Family nights with dance and music performances.
7. Check out Family History Library
Here’s another experience that should be on your list of free things to do in Salt Lake City, Utah. Located inside the Temple Square, this research facility is home to the world’s largest on-site genealogical data collection. Operating since 1894, this library is open for free for everyone, even for those who aren’t a member of the Mormon Church. Using electronic resources, periodicals, serials, books, microfiche and microfilms, the library helps the visitors discover the histories of their families.
8. Unwind at Liberty Park
With over 80 acres of land, the Liberty Park is the city’s largest park, and one of the top, can’t-miss things to do Salt Lake City, Utah. Featuring an array of recreational activities, this lovely oasis delights visitors with its sport areas, pool, pond and mature trees. Additionally, the park hosts some fun events in Salt Lake City, UT throughout the year.
9. Make a pit stop to Hogle Zoo
Traveling with kids who are obsessed with animals? I suggest that you make your way to Hogle Zoo, and see a world’s worth of fascinating wild creatures, such as elephants, cheetahs, parrots and rhinos. Additionally, a visit to this Salt Lake City zoo lets you discover the latest news in animal conservation as well as ride to the Lighthouse Point Splash Zone via the Zoofair Express.
10. Visit Salt Lake City Public Library
Are you a bookworm who’s on the lookout for some bookish things to do in Salt Lake City, UT? Whether you like stunning architecture or read books, the contemporary and beautiful Salt Lake City Public Library is surely worth a visit. Set right in the heart of the city, the library houses thousands of books, and tons of cushy corners ideal for chilling while reading a good story.
11. Swing by State Capitol
Rising 300 feet above the city, the Utah State Capitol is a must-see sight in Salt Lake City, Utah. Nestled on Capitol Hill, this domed, neoclassic building houses the Supreme Court, Senate and House of Representatives in Utah. Praised for its architecture, the capital has wondrously fine interior as well. Moreover, the capitol impresses visitors with its Golden Room, marble rotunda as well as small gallery with changing exhibits.
12. Check out Bonneville Salt Flats
Want to see something spectacular? The Bonneville Salt Flats offers one of the world’s most extraordinary and enthralling landscapes. As a matter of fact, it’s so unique and enticing that many car commercials and movies have been filmed here. The Salt Flats is made up of almost a hundred cubic miles of white and hard salt crust. It’s one of the few salt flats on earth, and the only in the whole country.
13. Explore Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest
See the colors and beauty of Mother Nature by exploring the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest. With an impressive land area of 2.1 million acres, the national park offers a wide range of landscapes, from rocky mountainsides to verdant fields. As an added bonus, the park offers plenty of outdoorsy things to do in Salt Lake City, Utah, including camping, biking and hiking. Just don’t forget to bring a camera as well as wear a sturdy pair of hiking shoes since there are tons of trails you’ll want to see and explore.
14. Hit Utah Museum of Fine Arts
Are you an art lover who’s looking for some fun things to do in Lake City, Utah? Be enthralled by over 16,000 artifacts and exhibits from across the globe at the Utah Museum of Fine Art. The museum’s permanent collection includes Egyptian and Green antiquities, early 20th-century photographs as well as Italian Renaissance paintings. Additionally, the museum houses a mishmash of remarkable traveling displays focusing on everything from modern art to early scientific discoveries.
15. Experience the icy thrills at Park City
Wondering what to do in Salt Lake City in winter? A mind-blowing winter wonderland, Park City is totally hardwired for powder adventurers. Located around 30 miles southeast of Utah’s capital, Park City houses a couple of awesome alpine ski spots sprawling across upon acres of stunning mountain terrain. Deer Valley resort exclusively caters to adventurous skies, offering gladed steeps, groomed runs and on-site restaurants. And, Park City Mountain Resort welcomes snowboarders and skiers of all levels to hit groomed trails, terrain parks and powder-filled bowls.
16. Take a hike to Ensign Peak
Uncover details of the pioneer history and watch a beautiful sunset on this short hike in Salt Lake City. Be mesmerized by the views of the skyline of Salt Lake City and its surrounding mountains. And, even with its 398-foot ascent, it’s a fairly easy hike, making it one of the best things to do in Salt Lake City for newbie hikers and families.
17. Visit the Great Salt Lake Marina
The Great Salt Lake, known as the Western Hemisphere’s largest saltwater lake, is a wondrous remnant of the ancient and massive Lake Bonneville. Not only is it easy on the eyes, but it’s also loaded with exciting things to do in Salt Lake City, including pedal boating, paddle boarding and kayaking. For a memorable visit, sail on the lake while gazing on the spectacular sunset.
18. Drop by Natural History Museum of Utah
Learn more about the state’s past through fascinatingly engaging exhibits on the museum’s natural history and geology. Afterwards, check out the collection of artifacts and gems from the prehistoric people in Utah. To me, though, the most of remarkable feature of the museum is the floor specifically dedicated to the paleontology discoveries of Utah.
19. Visit Gilgal Sculpture Garden
Can’t get enough of the fun, free things to do in Salt Lake City, Utah? A hidden and underrated garden, Gilgal is a unique attraction that should be on your travel itinerary and list of things to do in Salt Lake City, UT. Created perfectly in the 20th century, this wonderful little patch of land contains a dozen of original sculptures and more than 70 stones engraved with Mormon literary texts, poems and scriptures.
20. Shop at Downtown Farmer’s Market
Craving some delicious culinary treats! Forget the fine and lavish restaurants in Salt Lake City! Instead of spending a fortune on restaurants dishes, head to Downtown Farmer’s Market and sample heavenly artisanal food products. Indulge your sweet tooth with bean-to-bar chocolates, enjoy a fresh serving of limeade, and sample tasty artisan cheese from an award-winning products. Additionally, you may buy fresh product and find unique crafts, pottery and jewelry from local makers at this lovely outdoor farmer’s market.
21. Visit Tracy Aviary
Located inside the famed Liberty Park, the Tracy Aviary is the place to go if you’re into bird watching. Built in 1938 by a prominent banker, the aviary houses tons of charming and dazzling birds. While most of the bird species at this aviary are from North America, you’ll also see some lovely feathered beauties from all over the world. Since it was built in the 1930s, it’s also labeled as one of the world’s oldest aviaries.
22. Visit Salt Lake Tabernacle
Music lovers will find their bliss at the Salt Lake Tabernacle. On Thursday evenings, from 07:30 to 09:30 PM, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir – one of their world’s largest and oldest choirs – practice on their open-to-the-public music rehearsals. It’s your chance of seeing an award-winning choir who has sold millions of album copies, toured around the world and performed for presidents. For those who aren’t into music, you’ll still love the dome-shaped auditorium as well the gigantic organ with its 11,623 pipes
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