Zion National Park is one of the most unique places on earth with amazing landscapes featuring red rocks, one that truly showcases the diversity of landscapes in the National Park System. If you’re an avid hiker like us, Zion is basically paradise.
# Zion National Park is Open every day of the year.
#We visited Zion in April, which felt to me like the best time of year to visit Zion, as it was warm, but not ridiculous, and the crowds weren’t insane like it might be in peak summer.
#Admission fee: Private Vehicle: Valid for 7 days. - $35.00; Admits private, non-commercial vehicles (15 passenger capacity or less) and all occupants to Zion National Park, including both the Zion Canyon and Kolob Canyon areas.
# Zion Canyon Shuttle System:
There are two shuttle routes. The first is in the park. It runs from the visitor center up the Scenic Drive to destinations like the Zion Lodge and trailheads, including Emerald Pools, West Rim Trail, and Temple of Sinawava where hikers depart for the Narrows.
The second shuttle route began operating for the 2021 season on March 13, 2021. This shuttle is free and located in the Town of Springdale. It stops at 9 locations in town and picks up and drops off visitors at the park's pedestrian/bike entrance.
# Private vehicles are not allowed to enter the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive. Parking is limited inside Zion, and all parking lots fill early in the day. Paid parking is available in the town of Springdale.
Springdale<Zion National Park< Canyon Junction Bridge< The Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel<Zion Canyon Scenic Drive < Zion Lodge Historic District< Zion observation Point
We started from Springdale and had breakfast from a local restaurant named “MeMe's Cafe”. You will find food here from breakfast to dinner. You can have amazing coffee and yummy “Good Morning Sandwich” with a huge portion of Scrambled eggs, bacon, cheddar & hollandaise drizzle on grilled bread with country potatoes. We also took out subs for lunch. On the first day we used the shuttle to stop at several popular vista points. We have enjoyed Zion national park, The Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel, which is a Long landmark tunnel cut through red sandstone cliffs, the gateway to Zion National Park. The Temple of Sinawava is the massive amphitheater that unofficially marks the beginning of the canyon and one of the park's most popular destinations. Picturesque waterfalls tumble gently into a deep pool, making it definitely postcard material. We also hiked a few of the easy trails. Below I have added a few of my favorite different level hike trails for your interest.
Zion Canyon is the most visited part of Zion National Park and offers easy, moderate, and strenuous hikes. Most Zion Canyon hikes are accessible only by the park shuttle from March through November and require stopping at the appropriate shuttle stop. The options are diverse, offering something for everyone
trail length 3.5 mi / 5.6 km
A paved trail that follows the Virgin River from the South Campground to Canyon Junction. This trail is handicap accessible, but wheelchairs may need assistance.
Trail length 0.4 mile/0.6 km
Short but steep. Climbs to the top of a small hill. Trailside exhibits.
Lower Emerald Pool Trail:
Trail length 1.2 mile/1.9 km
Shuttle Stop to Start from:#9 Temple of Sinawava
Trail length 2.2 mile/ 3.5 km
These trails range from 1 mile to 7.6 miles and have larger elevation gains. They offer magnificent views of Zion Canyon but require additional planning as proper footwear, supply of water, and physical abilities become increasingly important.
Trail Length: 3.3 miles
Trail Length: 7.6 miles
Trail length: 2.0 miles
These trails range from 2.5 miles to 9.4 miles and have elevation gains of up to 2,148 ft. Some of these trails are closed or have warning signs. Before you start hiking; beware of the limitations.
Hidden Canyon Trail via the East Rim Trail
Observation Point via East Rim Trail
The Narrows via Riverside Walk
Zion Narrows< Angels Landing< Emerald Pools
On our second day in Zion I got an early start to beat the crowds and beat the heat. First we went narrow; The Narrows essentially follows the Virgin river and the hike is literally walking upstream in a river. Sometimes the height of the river is knee, sometimes during parts of the year, you have to basically swim through parts of the Narrows. So essentially you want to have a dry bag; so that you can keep your valuables safe and dry while you’re making your way down the river. Hiking in Narrows can be wet, slippery rocks lining the river floor, so it's not a fun way to hike for the beginner. The hike took about an hour and a half. It's simply one of those wonders that must be experienced to understand.
Angel’s Landing, arguably One of the most famous locations in the entire park. Hiking in this place is strenuous but it is worth every drop of sweat. Must visit to Emerald Pools; it has waterfalls, hanging gardens filled with flowers, dew-dripping ferns, pools to beat the heat and pictures to take home.
- Visit during April; Summer is very busy and hot weather
- Parking is quite limited around the park and the visitor centre so I suggest you take advantage of the Town Shuttle where possible
- If you plan to hike narrow please bring the hike boot and dry bag.
- Bring a water shoe, extra socksand extra clothes