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Unveiling the Wonders of Utah: A 7-Day Utah National Park Itinerary with Wandervans

Updated: Nov 3, 2023

Welcome to a journey like no other, where the rugged beauty of Utah unfolds before your eyes in a 7-day trip that promises unforgettable moments and breathtaking views.

This adventure begins as you steer your way into a state renowned for its boundless natural wonders, and it's not just any road trip – it's a journey that offers flexibility, spontaneity, and the opportunity to truly connect with nature. Wandervans, your partner in crime, provides you with the perfect home on wheels, offering not just transportation, but also a cozy refuge, a kitchen to prepare your meals, and the freedom to park under a star-studded sky in the heart of the wilderness.

Your 7-day Utah national park itinerary is a carefully crafted route, designed to showcase the very best the state has to offer. From biking in Moab to hiking through the iconic Narrows in Zion, you'll see different landscapes and have diverse experiences. So, prepare to embark on a journey where every day is a new chapter in the story of your Utah adventure. Grab your map, stock up on supplies, and fasten your seatbelt – Utah awaits, and your Wandervans adventure is about to begin. Let's hit the road!

Below is the Utah national park itinerary we chose and felt comfortable with! Feel free to add on days to stay in one place longer or skip something if you have limited time.

Day 1

  • Arrive in Utah (morning or night before

  • Pick up van from Wandervans

    • We rented the Medium tall and added on a sleeping bag, propane, and kitchen kit

  • Grocery shop, plan out meals and snacks for the week

  • Head south to Zion Outfitter to pick up gear to hike the Narrows in Zion National Park the next day

    • Ask employees about temperature and water height for the day of your hike. They can recommend bibs, water proof shoes, socks, and a walking stick ($55) for colder days or you can opt for just shoes, socks, and a walking stick for warmer days ($30). You can also bring your own gear if you have it!

  • Find camping spot

    • We didn’t start looking until dark so we were limited. Thanks to the van, we could really sleep anywhere! We chose just to pull off and park at the Virgin BMX track because we saw others had done the same

Find my full free camping guide here!

Day 2

  • Hike the Narrows

    • Early wake up to drive to the Zion National Park Visitor Center to catch the first shuttle for the narrows at 7 am. The parking lot fills up QUICK, I suggest getting there around 6:15, getting ready, and getting in line for the shuttle

    • Hike back as far as you like. We had the All Trails map downloaded and wanted to make it as far back as possible. We hiked 13 miles total, but this isn’t totally necessary

    • Going early will help avoid the crowds on the hike in, but coming back you will have to experience the heavy crowds. I promise you will be glad you started early

  • Return gear to Zion Outfitter (you can walk there from visitor center, make sure you take your park pass)

  • Take a $4 shower at Zion Outfitter. 5 minute timer but clean and warm!

  • Grab a much needed beer and snack from Zion Brewery

  • Drive to Bryce Canyon

  • Find free camping before sunset at Dixie National Forest Dispersed Camping Area

Other notes:

  • Zion is operating on a shuttle system. You will need to park at the visitor center and catch a shuttle into the park whether you hike the Narrows or not, get in early!

  • Another hike option is Angels Landing but this hike needs a permit

Day 3

  • Head into Bryce Canyon

  • Sunrise at Sunrise Point, Sunset Point, or Inspiration Point

  • Hike around the rim trail to see the other lookout points you didn’t choose for sunset

  • Hike the iconic Navajo loop trail

    • Start at Sunset, hike to Navajo, then to Queens Garden, and back to Sunrise

    • Hop on a shuttle to the visitor center or wherever you parked

  • Drive to Capitol Reef and camp here for free

Other notes:

  • Bryce Canyon also operates on a shuttle system. Park where you can and utilize the shuttle system to get around to various trail heads

Day 4

  • Sleep in at Capitol Reef National Park, you deserve it!

  • Drive the scenic drive

  • Hike Cassidy Arch Trail

  • Go to Gooseneck Overlook (better later in the day)

  • Check out the petroglyphs

  • Drive to Moab, check out Factory Butte on the way

  • Time for another shower, you stink. Lazy Lizard Hostel in Moab is $4 for unlimited time in a hot and clean shower

  • Camp at Willow Springs

Day 5

  • Sleep in a little!

  • Pick up mountain bike gear from Chile Pepper Bikes around 8 am

  • Drive to Dead Horse Point State Park, pay $20 entry fee and ask for bike trail map

  • Bike the Intrepid Biking trail based on your skill level

    • As a new biker, we did Intrepid (visitor center parking lot) to Raven Roll to Big Chief to Great Pyramid. I still had to get out and walk at parts but it was mostly mellow

  • Return bike gear

  • Take another shower at Lazy Lizard Hostel

  • Camp at free camping spot from night before or try to reserve a spot at Kens Lake

Day 6

  • Start the morning with a sunrise at Mesa Arch in Canyonlands

  • Explore Canyonlands and do a scenic drive

  • Plan ahead and get a reservation to Arches National Park

  • Scenic drive around Arches and see Balanced Rock, Delicate Arch, and the Windows

  • Have dinner at Moab Brewery, you deserve it!

Day 7

  • Sleep in or wake up for sunrise at Dead Horse Point or Canyonlands

  • Head back to SLC

  • Grab food at Cafe Shambala for some delicious and affordable Tibetan food

  • Complete van check in, pack, and head to the airport

Other notes:

-Use apps like iOverlander and Campendium to find showers, water sources, camping, and more

-Purchase a National Park Pass to save money entering the parks


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