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Yi-Liang (Lucas) Liu/Flickr

Key Info

1101 Zion – Mount Carmel Highway

Price & Hours

Free

Details

Free, Shopping Type
Less than 1 hour Time to Spend

scorecard

  • 5.0Value
  • 5.0Facilities
  • 4.0Atmosphere

Likely a traveler's first stop in Zion National Park, the visitor center contains a large bookstore, a miniature model of the entire park and knowledgeable park staff who are more than happy to answer questions. Plus, it's also a "green building," complete with solar panels, cooling towers and outdoor shade structures, among other eco-friendly elements. In fact, visitors can go for an "ecohunt" inside the visitor center to find out more about its green features.

One traveler describes the visitor center as an invaluable place to pick up maps and information about the park on your way in. On the way out, it's a great place to purchase mementos and books for further reading.

The Zion Canyon Visitor Center is open daily, starting at 8 a.m. In the winter, it closes at 5 p.m.; in the spring and fall, it closes at 6 p.m.; and in the summertime, it remains open until 7 p.m. You'll find it right inside the park's south entrance. For more information, visit the National Park Service's website.

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More Best Things To Do in Zion National Park

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#1 The Narrows

The slimmest section of Zion Canyon is known as the Narrows, and it's one of the park's most popular hikes. To experience it, set out from the Temple of Sinawava along the Riverside Walk for a one-mile, wheelchair-accessible hike that offers a good view of the Narrows. But if you want to go any farther, you'll be wading or even swimming upstream since the footpath turns into the Virgin River. Along the way, you'll enjoy towering views of the striated, orange-red canyon.

Recent travelers recommend sealing any valuables in a waterproof bag, as the water can rise as high as your waist in some places. According to reviewers, you'll also need to rent or bring waterproof shoes as the rocky, slippery terrain cannot be traversed with bare feet. Hikers also suggest getting to the Narrows early to avoid the crowds.

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