When you think of Utah’s national parks, you often think of red desert landscapes and arched rock formations, but Bryce Canyon National Park sits on a high plateau at the top of Grand Staircase Escalante, reaching a peak altitude of 9,115 feet and sprinkled with juniper trees. Bryce Canyon is not actually one single canyon, but instead a collection of natural amphitheaters or bowls, carved into the edge of the high plateau. The park is best known for their hoodoos which are towering rock formations formed through years of weathering and erosion. Because the park sits at high elevations, temperatures stay very mild compared to the rest of the desert southwest.
Whether exploring in the park or landscapes nearby, there are tons of great trails to be hiked with incredible views of the amphitheaters and hoodoos in every direction. Keep in mind that the park’s altitude is high, so be sure to stay hydrated and wear sun protection on all hikes!
Inside the park
Wall Street – Navajo Loop
This is the perfect quick loop for those who want an intro to what makes Bryce Canyon so unique. Enter the Navajo Loop at Sunset Point and turn right to head down Wall Street into Bryce Canyon’s only slot canyon. Once you hit the bottom, you’ll head back up the Two Bridges side of the loop, opening up to more incredible views and ending back at Sunset Point.
Distance: 1.4 miles
Queens Garden Trail
From the turning point of the Navajo loop, you can choose to extend your hike by opting for the Queen’s Garden trail instead! This will take you a bit further into the Bryce Amphitheater, adding an additional 1.8 miles on the Queen’s Garden portion of the trail and ending up at Sunrise Point. This hike takes you right through the most picturesque Bryce Canyon landscapes, with views of the hoodoos the entire way.
Distance: 3.2 miles
Peek-A-Boo Loop Trail
The Peek-A-Boo Loop Trail starts at Bryce Point and has a steep descent down to the canyon floor. You’ll see plenty of hoodoos as well as forested terrain on this trail as you get deeper into the basin. The trail is less trafficked than some of the other more popular trails.
Distance: 5.5 miles
The Rim Trail is perfect for those not wanting to hike down into the canyon but are still wanting to take in all the incredible views from above. The trail runs along the rim of the canyon from Bryce Point to Fairyland Point, running 5.5 miles in one direction. The elevation gain up to Bryce Point is 1,737 feet. There is a half mile paved portion of the trail between Sunrise Point and Sunset Point which has minor elevation gains and is both dog-friendly and wheelchair accessible.
Distance: 5.5 miles
Outside the park
Red Canyon is about 15 minutes from the entrance to Bryce Canyon National Park. Because Red Canyon is part of Dixie National Forest, rather than a national park or monument, there is no fee to enter. The area has an extensive trail system including popular hikes like Pink Ledges, Golden Wall and Birdseye. You’ll also find mountain and road bike trails as well as miles of ATV terrain.
Kodachrome Basin State Park
Kodachrome Basin State Park is about 20 miles southeast of Bryce Canyon National Park and offers a great dog-friendly alternative to the national park. You’ll find more views of hoodoos on the park’s trails like Angel’s Place, and even spot Shakespeare’s Arch on the Sentinel Trail. Note that dogs must be on leash!
Under Canvas Bryce Canyon’s upscale, outdoor resort sits just 15 minutes from Bryce Canyon National Park. Stay in safari-inspired accommodations, immersing yourself in nature without sacrificing the comforts of home. For more information on things to do in and around Bryce Canyon National Park, our on-site Guest Experience Coordinators are available to help you plan the perfect outdoor adventure during your stay at Under Canvas Bryce Canyon.