• Lauren H

Fall in Love with Southern Utah: A Two Week Road Trip Itinerary

Updated: Apr 8

I spent two weeks road tripping through Southern Utah’s magical landscapes with a group of friends. I recommend spending as much time as possible in this area; only visiting one of the national parks isn’t enough! The drives and parks feel as though you are visiting another planet. The landscape is truly unique.


Driving to Capitol Reef National Park
Driving to Capitol Reef National Park


Separate detailed blog posts are available for each section of this trip. They are linked below as well as throughout this post. This post expands on how to put all of the stops together and includes recommended stops on the driving days.


If you need a slightly shorter trip, I recommend skipping the day one activities or the day fourteen activities. Those stops are easy to eliminate logistically and were slightly less exciting than the other places we visited. If you want an even longer trip, adding the Grand Canyon to this trip is also easy. It is a short drive from Paige, Arizona (days four through seven).


Jump to specific blog posts here:


Day One through Three: Moab, Arches and Canyonlands

Day Four through Seven: Lake Powell

Day Seven through Eleven: Zion and Bryce National Parks

Day Eleven through Fourteen: Grand Staircase Escalante and Capitol Reef National Park


Day One

Daytime: Canyonlands National Park

Overnight in Moab, Utah


See post for more details here.


The Grand Viewpoint at Canyonlands National Park
The Grand Viewpoint at Canyonlands National Park

Day Two

Daytime: Arches National Park- Hike the Devil's Garden Loop Trail

Evening: Arches National Park-Watch the Sunset in the Windows Section

Overnight in Moab, Utah


See post for more details here.


Sunrise at Partition Arch
Sunrise at Partition Arch

Day Three

Morning: Arches National Park- Hike to Delicate Arch

Afternoon: Arches National Park-Hike the Windows Section

Evening: Dead Horse Point State Park

Overnight in: Moab, Utah


See post for more details here.


Delicate Arch
Delicate Arch


Day Four

Morning: Drive 4 hours to Page Arizona

Afternoon: Visit Monument Valley

Overnight: Lake Powell


For the drive to Page, Arizona, take historic highway US Route 163. It is a jaw dropping drive and has many options for stops along it. I’ve outlined potential stops below:

  1. Valley of the Gods

  2. This is a backcountry park that has similar scenery and sandstone buttes to Monument Valley. We drove through a portion of it on our trip. The road going through the area isn’t paved, but our 4-wheel drive SUV handled it fine. It’s located directly off of the highway so it’s an easy stop.


Valley of the Gods
Valley of the Gods

  1. Mile marker 13 on US Highway 163, the end of Forrest Gump’s Cross Country Run

  2. Take a quick stop here to take a fun picture, or to try Frybread.


Mile Marker 13 on US Highway 163
Mile Marker 13 on US Highway 163

  1. Monument Valley

  2. If Monument Valley is open I recommend prioritizing your time to spend most of the day there. Once in the Valley, drive the scenic drive to see the sandstone buttes in the area, take a guided hike (a guide is required), or book a tour to see Puebloan ruins.

  3. National Bridges Monument

  4. This is a park with three naturally former stone bridges to see.

  5. Mexican Hat National Monument

  6. This park’s main attraction is a balancing rock formation that looks like a sombrero.


Along this route be sure to try Native American Fry Bread. There are numerous small stands selling it as you drive closer to Monument Valley. It is a flat dough bread that is deep fried. It can be eaten by itself or with honey, jam, powdered sugar or beef. Navajo tacos are also popular in the area and are made with Fry Bread.


Signage for Roadside Frybread
Signage for Roadside Frybread

Day Five

Morning: Kayak to Antelope Canyon

Afternoon; Hike in Antelope Canyon

Overnight in: Lake Powell


See post for more details here.


In Antelope Canyon
In Antelope Canyon


Day Six

Morning: Mountain bike in Page, AZ

Afternoon: Visit Horseshoe Bend

Overnight in: Lake Powell


See post for more details here.


Horseshoe Bend
Horseshoe Bend


Day Seven

Morning: Kayak to Lone Rock Canyon

Afternoon: Drive to Kanab or Springdale

Overnight in: Kanab or Springdale


See post for more details here.


Kayaking on the way back from Lone Rock Canyon
Kayaking on the way back from Lone Rock Canyon

Day Eight

Daytime: Zion–Hike the Narrows

Overnight in Kanab or Springdale


See post for more details here.


Hiking the Narrows
Hiking the Narrows in Zion

Day Nine

Morning: Zion–Hike Angel’s Landing

Afternoon: Zion–Hike the Emerald Pools Trail

Overnight in Kanab or Springdale


See post for more details here.


Hiking up to Angel's Landing
Hiking up to Angel's Landing


Day Ten

Morning: Zion–Hike to Observation Point

Overnight in Kanab or Springdale


See post for more details here.


The View from Observation Point
The View from Observation Point

Day Eleven

Early Morning: Drive to 1-2 hours to Bryce Canyon

Morning: Bryce Canyon– Hike the Figure Eight Combination Trail

Afternoon: Drive 1 hour to Escalante.

Overnight in Escalante


Note that staying in Kanab instead of Springdale will make the drive to Bryce Canyon shorter by about 30 minutes. If you take the route from Kanab, stop at the Cave Cafe along the way. They sell smoothies, juices and Acai bowls.


See post for more details here.


Views in Bryce Canyon
Views in Bryce Canyon National Park

Day Twelve

Morning:Grand Staircase Escalante–Peek-a-boo, and Spooky Slot Canyons

Afternoon:Grand Staircase Escalante–Zebra Canyon

Overnight in Escalante


See the blog post for more details here.


Note that for the Escalante portion of this two week trip, I removed the day hikes mentioned on day one of the detailed blog post. If you have room for a 15 day trip, feel free to add it back in! Day one of the Escalante post gave options for longer, more difficult hikes. Those trails add significant hiking mileage, especially as part of a 2-week road trip with lots of other hiking.


Exploring Peek-a_boo Canyon
Exploring Peek-a-Boo Canyon

Day Thirteen

Morning: Grand Staircase Escalante–Lower Calf Creek Falls Trail

Afternoon:Drive 40 minutes to Boulder

Overnight in Boulder


The total drive to Boulder is 40 minutes, but the trailhead for the hike is along the route.


The drive to Boulder is along Scenic Byway 12 and is appropriately described as scenic! Be sure to pull over at viewpoints to take it in.


Kiva Koffeehouse is a perfect halfway point and pre-hike stop on the drive. The restaurant offers a wide selection of coffee and tea drinks but also serves house-made baked goods and breakfast and lunch options like quiche and soups. It is built up on a ledge overlooking the surrounding rock formations with lots of outdoor seating to take in the panoramic views.


See the blog post for more details here.


Calf Creek Falls
Calf Creek Falls in Grand Staircase Escalante

Day Fourteen

Morning: Drive one hour to Capitol Reef National Park

Afternoon: Capitol Reef National Park

Overnight in Boulder


See the blog post for more details here.


The Hickman Bridge in Capitol Reef National Park
The Hickman Bridge in Capitol Reef National Park