The Salt Lake City Travel Guide

Salt Lake City’s Secret Gems: The Ultimate Travel Guide
Salt Lake City: The West’s Surprising Jewel
Salt Lake City should be on your travel list. This hidden jewel amid the Rocky Mountains is Utah’s capital city. Salt Lake City offers everything: world-class ski resorts, gorgeous national parks and monuments, and a vibrant cuisine and cultural scene.
Temple Square and More
Salt Lake City is known as the “Crossroads of the West” for its history as a pioneer hub. Temple Square, home to LDS headquarters and several historic structures, is the city’s most famous landmark.
Learn about the LDS church’s history and principles on a guided tour or on your own. Salt Lake City has many museums and galleries outside Temple Square.
The Natural History Museum has interactive exhibitions about Utah’s geology and ecology, while the Utah Museum of Fine Arts has ancient and contemporary art. Pioneer Theatre Company performs Broadway-quality plays year-round, while Ririe-Woodbury Dance Group performs modern dance.
Get Around
TRAX, Buses,
Salt Lake City’s public transportation makes getting about without a car easier. Three TRAX lines connect downtown to the suburbs and the airport. You can buy tickets at any station with cash or a credit card. Fares vary by pass length.
Buses cover much of the city and are dependable. Reloadable transit passes are convenient if you plan to use public transportation often.
Hire Cars
In Salt Lake City, you can also rent a car. Economy cars to SUVs are available at airport and city rental car businesses. If you rent a car, arrange for downtown peak-hour parking.
Bikeshare Programs
GREENbike and LimeBike offer bike share services in Salt Lake City. These programs provide hourly or daily bike rentals from city stations. It’s a cheap, eco-friendly way to visit Salt Lake City and exercise!
Temple Square, historic places
Temple Square is Salt Lake City’s most famous landmark. Millions of people frequent this 10-acre Latter-day Saint spiritual centre. The beautiful temple, the Tabernacle Choir, and various museums are here.
Salt Lake Temple’s spires and masonry are worth viewing. Salt Lake City has many historic locations besides Temple Square.
Visit the Utah State Capitol Building or Fort Douglas Military Museum. Visit Salt Lake City’s Pioneer Memorial Museum or historical markers to learn about local history.
Outdoor recreation and skiing
Salt Lake City’s ski resorts are a major draw. There’s something for everyone, from seasoned skiers to beginners. Alta Ski Area, Snowbird, and Park City Mountain Resort are popular choices (which hosted events during the 2002 Winter Olympics).
Snowboarding, sledding, snowshoeing, and more are available. Salt Lake City has several outdoor activities besides skiing.
Ensign Peak and Donut Falls Trail are excellent hiking trails. Explore Liberty Park or Memory Grove Park or kayak on Great Salt Lake.
Galleries and museums
Salt Lake City provides several cultural opportunities. Local and international art are displayed in the Utah Museum of Fine Arts.
You may also learn about dinosaurs and Native American history at the Natural History Museum of Utah. The Leonardo (science and technology) and Utah State Railroad Museum are also worth visiting.
Salt Lake City has many art galleries and museums. Phillips Gallery (modern art), Modern West Fine Art (Western art), and David Dee Fine Arts are popular choices (which specializes in Native American art).
Retail areas
Salt Lake City features several shops for retail therapy. Downtown Salt Lake City has several shops and boutiques, including Trolley Square, City Creek Center, and 9th & 9th, recognized for its unique mix of merchants (an upscale mall with a range of high-end shops). Sugar House (trendy apparel and vintage boutiques) and The Gateway are both worth visiting (a mixed-use development with both retail spaces and entertainment venues).
Food & Drink
Fry Sauce with Funeral Potatoes
Fry sauce and funeral potatoes are must-tries when visiting Salt Lake City. Utah fast food uses fry sauce. Many eateries provide their own versions of ketchup, mayonnaise, and seasonings.
Try it with fries or onion rings! Funeral potatoes are a staple at Utah potlucks and family gatherings.
Diced potatoes are blended with cream of mushroom soup, sour cream, cheese, and cornflakes for crunch. Though unhealthy, it’s tasty and filling.
Craft breweries
In recent years, Salt Lake City has seen a rise in artisan breweries. Uinta Brewing Company, Wasatch Brewery, and Epic Brewery are notable possibilities.
Salt Lake City’s distilling business is developing as well as its beer industry. High West Distillery’s award-winning whisky is a popular choice, although there are many others.
Coffee shops
Salt Lake City loves coffee. There are several great coffee places in the city for working or getting a caffeine fix before touring. Blue Copper Coffee Lounge, Publik Coffee Roasters, and La Barba Coffee are local favourites.
Cafes and bakeries offer delectable pastries and sandwiches for a more substantial meal. Eva’s Bakery and Gourmandise The Bakery serve French-inspired pastries and breads.
Downtown SLC hotels
Downtown hotels offer the most convenience and access to Salt Lake City’s major attractions. Depending on budget and taste, there are several alternatives.
Grand America Hotel, Little America Hotel, Kimpton Hotel Monaco, and Hilton Salt Lake City Center are popular. All hotels have gyms, pools, spas, and restaurants.
The Peery Hotel and Ellerbeck Mansion Bed & Breakfast are among several downtown boutique hotels. These motels have charm and character but lack the amenities of larger hotels.
Neighborhood Airbnbs
Airbnb is fantastic for budget travellers and locals. The city has innumerable ads for private rooms, flats, and houses.
Airbnbs are usually in residential communities outside downtown. Sugar House is a popular Airbnb neighbourhood with many local stores and eateries.
9th & 9th has fashionable boutiques and cafes and is close to public transportation. Salt Lake City has accommodations for every taste and budget!
Searching for Salt Lake City activities? The city hosts cultural festivals and outdoor concerts year-round. Top events:
Sundance Festival
Cinema buffs should attend the Sundance Film Festival. This January festival promotes indie films from throughout the world. Park City and Salt Lake City host screenings and director/actor panel discussions.
Parties and other social events accompany the films at the festival. If you want to go, plan ahead because tickets are scarce.
Utah Festival
Each June, Library Square hosts the Utah Arts Festival. This event features visual art, live music, dance, drama, and more by state and national artists.
Food vendors sell international cuisine in addition to art and performances. Local museums and community organizations provide hands-on art activities kids love.
Outdoor concerts and festivals
Salt Lake City has many outdoor concerts and festivals in the summer. Red Butte Garden Amphitheatre, USANA Amphitheatre, and Pioneer Park are popular venues (in downtown SLC).
Twilight Concert Series (Thursday evenings in July and August), Reggae Rise Up Utah, and Utah Blues Festival are popular annual music festivals (held in June). Outdoor concerts and festivals offer music for everyone.
Day trips
Park City: Winter Wonderland
Park City is a snow wonderland 30 minutes from Salt Lake City. This picturesque ski town has about 7,300 skiable acres and has hosted two Winter Olympics. Deer Valley and Park City Mountain offer beginning and advanced trails.
Snowshoeing, sledding, and horse-drawn sleigh rides complement skiing and snowboarding. Main Street has Utah’s top restaurants and boutiques.
Antelope Island State Park: Wildlife Haven
Buffalo, bighorn sheep, pronghorn antelope, and other wildlife roam a unique natural sanctuary an hour north of Salt Lake City. Antelope Island State Park overlooks the Great Salt Lake and Wasatch Mountains.
Hike or bike over 40 miles of scenic trails or relax on one of the island’s sandy beaches. Bring your camera—this is a place you’ll want to remember.
Photographers Love Bonneville Salt Flats
Bonneville Salt Flats, two hours west of Salt Lake City, is a must-see for nature lovers and photographers. The flats are a wide expanse of white salt deposits that look almost alien.
When it rains or floods, mountain streams rush onto these flats, creating a mirror-like surface. Visit Bonneville Salt Flats whether you’re a photographer or just love capturing photos.
Expert Advice
Visit during outdoor or cultural events.
Salt Lake City is worth visiting year-round, although the optimal time depends on your interests. Late spring through early fall is great for hiking, biking, and skiing. These months are mild and perfect for exploring the area’s natural beauties.
Ski season at nearby Park City and Alta is another fantastic time to visit. Plan your trip around Salt Lake City’s annual cultural events like festivals and concerts.
Park City hosts the Sundance Film Festival in January, while downtown hosts the Utah Arts Festival in June. Summer concerts and festivals abound.
City alcohol laws:
Salt Lake City’s alcohol rules often confuse visitors. Several pubs charge a nominal price for a membership or “secret club” card. Alcoholic restaurants must serve food and limit beverages per person.
Before going out, study bars and restaurants to avoid these laws. Search for places with a private club license or a membership program so you can get in.
Secret treasures
Temple Square and other prominent attractions are great, but there are also many off-the-beaten-path jewels. Gilgal Sculpture Garden is a 1940s art park with remarkable stone sculptures by a local businessman.
The 100-acre Red Butte Garden and Arboretum is another hidden gem with beautiful mountain views. Picnics and nature walks are nice here.
Visit Sugar House and The Avenues in Salt Lake City. These neighbourhoods have quaint cafes, boutique shops, and street art seldom found in guidebooks.
While planning a vacation, consider Salt Lake City. Outdoor recreation, history, and culture are distinctive to the city.
Salt Lake City attracts adventurers and nature enthusiasts with its proximity to ski resorts, national parks, and other natural attractions. Salt Lake City has a rich history, active arts scene, and beautiful surroundings.
Temple Square, historic sites, and museums and art galleries are available to visitors. Food, too!
Foodies should try Salt Lake City’s fried sauce and funeral potatoes. Salt Lake City offers everything.
This city is great for outdoor and cultural adventures. Pack your luggage for a memorable trip at one of America’s most overlooked destinations!

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