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Utah travel guide

About Utah

Phenomenal national parks, world-class skiing and a thriving brewpub scene that belies the state’s dry reputation: welcome to Utah.

The Beehive State’s national parks are a whirlwind of wind-carved canyons, chequerboard rock faces, fragile rock arches and vermilion spires. You can climb sculpted sandstone at Capitol Reef or barrel down Class V rapids in Canyonlands’ Cataract Canyon. Weave through Fiery Furnace’s labyrinthine canyons at Arches or snap sunset at Bryce Canyon as an army of hoodoos goes to sleep. Throw any fear of heights to one side and hike the nerve-racking trail to Angels Landing for outstanding views over Zion National Park.

Not enough for you? How about tracking a stegosaurus (or at least its fossil) at Dinosaur National Monument? Or take a drive along Heritage Highway 89 for a dose of classic Americana. Unleash your inner cowboy and saddle up at a dude ranch for some cattle wrangling. Then test your mountain-biking mettle on the legendary Slickrock Trail in Moab.

Utah’s adventures don’t stop when the snow falls. You can test the state’s claim to have ‘the greatest snow on earth’ and launch yourself into vertiginous chutes at a world-renowned line-up of ski resorts in the Wasatch Mountains, or arm yourself with peeps and a shovel and hit the backcountry for untracked powder and rollercoaster tree runs.

Grab a couple of days’ urban action in Salt Lake City. The Church of the Latter Day Saints might spring to mind when you think of Utah’s capital city, and the Salt Lake Temple does dominate town. But Salt Lake is also home to state-of-the-art museums (check out the super-modern Natural History Museum of Utah or The Leonardo for starters), thriving student and LGBT communities, and packed pubs where you can plot your next escapade.

Key facts

Area:

219,885 sq km (84,898 sq miles).

Population:

3 million (2015).

Population density:

13.6 per sq km.

Capital:

Salt Lake City.