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Utah: walking through stunning Bryce Canyon

I don’t think I’ve ever done as much walking in my life as I have these past two days hiking through Zion National Park and now Bryce Canyon!

We’re on our incredible 7-day Utah road trip which started in Salt Lake City, then Park City, the Zion where yesterday I hiked The Narrows in amazing Zion National Park and today we drove less than two hours to stunning Bryce Canyon and walked the Navajo Trail among the hoodoos!

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What to do in Bryce Canyon

And you don’t need to be a finely tuned athlete to achieve these either!

The Narrows is a flat hike but through the river so the rocks make it unstable (in the post linked above I recommend 5 things to know before you go).

Bryce Canyon is utterly different and filled with plenty of hikes so you can pick and choose how strenuous you want to be.

You could enjoy a half mile stroll with your camera on a flat path along the rim, take a three-hour guided tour, or go down into the canyon with several choices of which route and steepness to take coming back up.

Bryce Canyon Utah
From the rim looking into Bryce Canyon

If you’re ultra sporty, you can even race against the rest of the world using the Strava app (my mate Corey Marshall is currently 5th in the world. He clearly needs to get back there and claim his World Number One spot!)

It’s astonishing to see the change in landscape from the sheer cliffs standing half a kilometre high at Zion, to the jagged hoodoos carved by wind and water over millennia at Bryce. And the night sky views are breathtaking.

Navajo Bryce Canyon
Winding down to the canyon floor. The easy bit!

Here’s a tip: the best place for sunrise views is not actually Sunrise Point. You need to go to Bryce Point for the sunrise and Inspiration Point for sunset.

There are also lots of natural hot springs in Utah which you might like to note down in case you’re going to be driving near them, including a couple you can SCUBA dive in!

Here are some of my favourite pics from my Bryce Canyon hike, but if you want to find out more details about others, check out the best hikes in Bryce canyon:

Navajo loop
Setting off to walk the Navajo loop on these pathways.

But what goes down must come up…

Navajo Utah
The sights along the way

But the thought of the 550ft climb back up the canyon to complete the loop was too daunting for me (besides I was pressed for time as I had my Sunday Newstalk ZB radio interview with Andrew Dickens in an hour. I blame him!)

So we took the left turn and found Queen’s Garden and hiked back up to Sunset Point, a 350ft climb. Pufffff!

This whole area reminds me also of the Garden of the Gods in Colorado. You can read about some great hiking in Colorado in this post.

Bryce Canyon hoodoo
I can’t stop taking pics of these hoodoos and wonder how many people see animals…
Bryce Canyon
… or the queen
Queen Victoria, Bryce
This is the Queen Victoria hoodoo carved since the beginning of time
Bryce canyon Utah
Or the fist!
Megan in Utah
Proof that I actually walked this dusty trail!
Sunrise point walk Utah
Heading out to Sunrise Point
Bryce Canyon chipmunk
And then I saw this little guy! Is it a chipmunk??
Bryce Canyon, Utah
And one last pic from the rim of incredible Bryce Canyon, Utah

Where to stay in Bryce Canyon:

We’re staying in Bryce City at the Best Western Bryce Canyon Grand Hotel and the National Park shuttle picks up from here every 15 minutes.

It’s also a short walk to the little town with a huge General Store selling everything you could want and where you pay your $12 pp for 7 days access to the park.

It is possible to take your own car into the park and there are several car parking areas at the various lookouts and trails.

Dinner in Bryce Canyon:

For an experience like no other, get tickets to Ebenezer’s Barn & Grill. ($32-$38) It’s across the parking lot from the Best Western and is a full hoe-down country cowboy music show and buffet dinner.

You choose your meat, then along the line you go for beans, potatoes, coleslaw and buns. But the Bar G Wranglers are great entertainment; great singers and fantastic musicians. You’ll be sure to have fun!

Here’s my Periscope (excuse the phone quality) of Rawhide



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Friday 22nd of March 2019

Hi Megan Have you considered doing a tour through the National Parks? We are keen to visit Bryce, Zion and the Arches etc but aren't confident to drive in the US. Your Blog looks just like our activity Level etc. We can't find a small tour that looks like us (54 & 50) Thanks


Sunday 24th of March 2019

Hmmm, I haven't thought about that. It'd be interesting to see how many people might be keen to join too. Certainly food for thought!

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Hi, I'm Megan Singleton and I'm the word slinger of this travel blog as well as on radio in NZ every Sunday. Former Travel Editor at Yahoo NZ and current freelance writer for a few newspapers and mags from time to time, I set off on this travel writing journey 20 years ago and I've pretty much always got a suitcase half packed (or half un-packed!) I'd love you to join me on Facebook or Twitter and sign up for my newsletters if you want loads of travel tips, advice and deals!