Why Greater Zion is Worth Visiting This Year

Zion National Park

Where to go next? Is greater Zion on your list? Here’s why it should be.

This is an age-old question that every adventurer (or family full of adventurers) must answer often. Chances are (unless you call it home) you haven’t given Washington County, Utah the consideration it deserves.

Referred to as “Greater Zion,” this Utah destination is home to world-renowned Zion National Park, the city of St. George and surrounding municipalities, four state parks, and a multitude of year-round adventure offerings, set amid red rock of the Desert Southwest.

What to do in the greater Zion region of Utah

Has your interest peaked? Just wait… there’s so much more. The following are just a few reasons why you should visit or get to know the greater Zion area.

St. George is the fastest-growing metropolitan area in the country and Zion National Park is the third most visited National Park in the US. The destination is quickly taking over the top spot in Utah for mountain bikers with events like the annual Red Bull RampageTrue GRIT Epic and 25 Hours in Frog Hollow.

If you’re seeking rest and relaxation, Red Mountain Resort is consistently rated one of the top destination spas in the US. And a new four-story, 60-room Marriott Autograph Collection hotel called The Advenire is slated to open in downtown St. George summer 2019 (late August).

Under Canvas Zion

Another notable destination for those seeking a refined outdoor experience, Under Canvas Zion recently opened, offering a new luxury glamping experience just minutes from the park.

Now you know where to stay, but what about entertainment? Lucky you, activities for the entire family await:

Events and Entertainment

Set amidst a red rock canyon, Tuacahn Amphitheatre showcases Broadway performances, concerts, comedic performances and much more.

Ten world-class golf courses along the Red Rock Golf Trail. High caliber athletic competitions such as the IRONMAN 70.3 St. George North American Pro Championship and Huntsman Senior Games.

Beyond the National Park are four amazing State Parks including Snow Canyon State Park for hiking, biking, and horseback riding as well as Sand Hollow State Park for water sports, camping, and utility task vehicle (UTV) adventures on the red sand dunes.


Inn on The Cliffs and Cliffside Restaurant provide red rock and panoramic city views, along with an upscale dining experience. There also is an outside bar/dining area! 

Red Mountain Resort

Red Mountain Resort is often rated as one of the best destination spas in the US. They have lovely accommodations, a newly renovated welcome center, complimentary morning hikes and an activities calendar filled with things to do throughout your stay.

George’s Corner occupies a historic corner of the city and used to be the Big Hand Cafe — eclectic menu, full bar and often live music.

Anasazi Steak House is upscale dining where you can opt to do your own hot rock cooking and enjoy a fondue appetizer. 

Xetava Gardens Cafe in the middle of Kayenta Art Village … indoor and patio dining. The patio offers blankets and fire pits to take off the chill. Their Royden Lemonade Supreme is legendary! People visit Xetava just for the lemonade.

Rosita’s Santa Fe Kitchen on the edge of nearby Springdale brings New Mexican cuisine to the area thanks to the vision of the late Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Paul Allen.


These hikes in Zion National Park are highly recommended.

The Subway — must have a permit to hike so it’s not as easily accessible to everyone but certainly iconic! Includes traditional hiking and canyoneering. https://www.nps.gov/zion/planyourvisit/thesubway.htm

Angels Landing — the most iconic hike in Zion https://utah.com/zion-national-park/angels-landing

Observation Point – a great alternative to Angels Landing. This iconic hike looks down on Angels Landing and provides a view of the whole canyon. https://utah.com/hiking/zion-national-park/observation-point-trail

Hidden Canyon — Some argue that this is Zion’s best-kept secret. It’s lesser-known with touches of Angels Landing (with chains at some heights)  https://www.visitstgeorge.com/zions-best-hidden-canyon/ 

Hikes Outside of the Park

Snow Canyons State Park – Lava Flow Overlook Trail – Where else do you get to see lava tubes? And the trail connects up with West Canyon Overlook and Whiterocks Trail too, which both provide great views of the canyon:https://hikestgeorge.com/hiking-trails/lava-flow-overlook/

Yant Flats (Candy Cliffs) – Often compared to Arizona’s “Wave,” this lesser-known area offers a unique sandstone formation. https://hikestgeorge.com/hiking-trails/yant-flat-candy-cliffs/

Camping at Sand Hollow State Park 

More than anything, we want to give you a good reason to hit the road and explore your own backyard. This resource guide is just a taste of what the greater Zion region has to offer. If you would like more information or have questions, please leave us a comment below.

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