Many visitors to Moab are unsure of whether they'll be seeing the same sights at these two national parks and wonder whether they should spend the time and money to see both. However, we're here to tell you that you're in for two distinct adventures at these two parks. Though they're both in the area, each national park offers its own specific sights and experiences to be had. So, yes, it's worth visiting Arches and Canyonlands National Parks.
Arches National Park is home to the world's largest concentration of natural stone openings. This park provides tourists and visitors with an up-close experience of the gorgeous, other-worldly red rock landscape. On the other hand, the Island in the Sky District of Canyonlands National Park is nestled on top of a 1,000-foot mesa with beautiful viewpoints that encircle thousands of square miles of incredible canyon country. These views offer the diversely colored landscape of southeastern Utah that many people consider to rival the views of the Grand Canyon. So, if you have the time and want to make the most of your visit to Moab, both of these distinctly beautiful national parks are worth a visit.
The time you need to visit these attractive national parks all depends on what specific tours and adventures you want to do there. For example, the scenic drives at Arches and Canyonlands National Parks can typically be driven in a few hours apiece. So, if you only have a limited amount of time to stay in Moab, you can get a taste of both parks' sights and adventures in a single day. However, we recommend spending at least a full day at each park if you have the time to enjoy some hiking and other sights to experience each park fully. Although, you can easily spend several days in each park if you're staying for an extended vacation with the numerous longer hiking trails at Arches National Park and the expansive backcountry in Canyonlands National Park. With all of these adventures and attractions, we have enough to keep you busy for weeks in Moab aside from these two national parks, as long as you have the time.
Arches National Park is much smaller than Canyonlands National Park and more easily accessible for driving and hiking activities. Our Morning or evening Sunset Arches Tours make it easy to see the most popular sites in Arches without the hassle of driving, navigating and scanning for parking spots. If you are hiking on your own in Arches, you may want to review our favorite hikes in Arches National Park.
Canyonlands National Park is spectacular from viewpoints that are easy drives on your own, but interacting with this vast landscape is much more difficult than in most National Parks - one of its many charms!
- By land:Renting a Jeep (with maps provided) will provide access to the many miles of dirt roads that wind around the canyons, buttes and mazes of Canyonlands. You could drive for days on end and get quite lost without proper preparation.
- By air:Hour-long scenic air tours offer a rare bird’s eye view of this most unique landscape.
- By river: The Colorado River winds through the heart of this landscape, offering views that rival those found in the Grand Canyon. Two whitewater rafting options offer the very best way to “become one with the landscape” and the powers that carved it.
If you're unsure whether Moab, Utah, is a vacation idea for the whole family, not to worry. We have a wide selection of activities and adventures that are safe and fun for your entire family. You and your children will never be bored with all that Moab has to offer.
Firstly, you can head up to Moab Giants, where you and the kids can walk among the prehistoric giants that once roamed the Earth. Not only is Moab Giants hours of fun but also an educational journey for you and the little ones. Moab Giants has both indoor and outdoor adventures available for hours of entertainment.
Next, you can check out one of the numerous national parks so your child can become a Junior Ranger. That's right! Your children can learn all about the local area in Utah and earn their place as a Junior Ranger. Additionally, Arches National Park is the perfect family-friendly hiking destination filled with plenty of short, child-appropriate hikes.
Finally, river rafting may sound out of the boundary for kids. However, our local section of the Colorado River is tons of family-oriented fun during the summer months. This stretch of river is perfect for any family ready to spend a relaxing day on the water or even spend the night camping along the banks of this scenic river. We offer many more kid-friendly activities at Moab Adventure Center. If you want to see more family-friendly activities in Moab, Utah, check out our top ten kid-friendly activities
What started as a Mormon Mission in the 1850s has evolved into one of the top worldwide vacation destinations thanks to the beautiful scenic surroundings and countless activities and adventures to enjoy. No matter how or where you want to spend your time visiting beautiful Moab, UT, you can find the perfect place for you or your family. Whether you want to pitch a tent in the great outdoors, stay at an affordable motel, cozy up in a bed and breakfast, find an upscale suite, enjoy some time on a ranch resort, or park the RV, Moab provides endless recommendations to have you covered. Moab, UT, offers some of the most diverse accommodations of any tourist city to suit anyone's tastes or needs. Keep in mind that Moab becomes a bustling attraction during the summer months, so plan your trip ahead to ensure you book the perfect lodging for you. If you want to learn more about the many accommodations in Moab, check out our Moab Lodging options.
When you've spent the day sightseeing and enjoying the thrills of Moab, you'll need a place to settle down and enjoy some good food. Thankfully, there is no shortage of delicious eateries in the area. No matter what type of cuisine you want to enjoy, Moab has something for everyone. For example, The Moab Diner is a local favorite. From the friendly staff to the quick service to the food itself, this diner has made a name for itself in the area. Some local favorites include the Fisher Tower French Toast, Bacon Cheeseburger, and Southwestern Stir Fry. Try Miguel's Baja Grill if you're looking for something with some southwestern flair. This restaurant is only open in the evenings. However, it's another local favorite for a delicious dinner. Pick a seat outside on the beautifully decorated patio or inside the inviting dining areas and enjoy some Nopolo-style Ceviche, Steak Salad, or Baja Fish Tacos. See our top seven Moab restaurants if you want to know more about where to eat in Moab.