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10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

Florence
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10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

We have 10 days to visit the national parks and see what Utah has to offer, what should I put on my intinerary, and what can be left out (for another trip) most likely? If you have suggestions for places to stay and how to break the 10 days between the different parks, that would be greatly appreciated.

Uden, The...
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1. Re: 10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

Hi Ckard, welcome to the forum.

Where are you flying to and from? What time of year? Hiking or not? Kids in tow? Please tell us something more about yourself and we'll come up with some hints.

Tet

Florence
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2. Re: 10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

Driving from Denver. Two kids, 19 and 17. Like to be active, yes, hiking and such. Coming in around early August.

Uden, The...
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3. Re: 10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

Coming from Denver and return there will take 2 days so you'll have 8 days for your Utah visit. If you want to visit all THE National Parks, it will be a lot of driving. But re your questions we'll give it a try;

Day 1: Drive I70 from Denver to Moab. This is a fantastic introduction because I70 is one of the most scenic interstates in the USA. Even without stops it's already 6 hours to Moab from DIA. Take exit 214 (Cisco exit) and drive 128 to Moab.

Day 2: Arches NP all day.

Day 3: Canyonlands NP and Dead Horse Point SP in the morning and drive to Monument Valley via 191/95/261/163. Don't miss Moki Dugway as part of the 261 stretch. Stay Monument Valley

Day 4: See Monument Valley and drive to Page for Antelope Canyon and Horseshoebend Overlook. Stay Page

Day 5: Drive to Zion NP early in the morning (only 2 hours. First visit to Zion

Day 6: Zion all day

Day 7: Start early and drive to Bryce Canyon NP for a visit rest of the day.

Day 8: Bryce in the morning and the drive to Torrey via ut12 www.scenicbyway12.com

Day 9: Visit to Capitol Reef NP and explore more of the area.

Day 10: It's 8 hours to drive back to Denver.

Another option:

Day 1: Denver-Moab

Day 2: Moab

Day 3: Moab

Day 4: Moab via 191/95/261/163 to Monument Valley for a brief visit. Then drive to Page.

Day 5: Page all day for Antelope Canyon, Horseshoe bend overlook, Glen Canyon Dam etc.

Dau 6: Drive to Zion an stay 2 nights.

Day 7: Zion

Day 8: Drive to Bryce early, rest of the day for Bryce.

Day 9: Drive ut12 to Torrey, take your time and a brief visit to Capitol Reef NP.

Day 10: Long day back to Denver.

If these routes are too long you could think about visiting Canyonlands, Arches, Capitol Reef, Bryce and Zion only, like:

Day 1: Denver-Moab

Day 2: Moab

Day 3: Moab

Day 4: Drive from Moab to Zion via I70 (also this is a great stretch) and I15.

Day 5: Zion

Day 6: Zion

Day 7: Zion-Bryce. Visit to Bryce

Day 8: Bryce and to Torrey

Dag 9: Capitol Reef etc.

Day 10: Back to Denver.

Many more options and details.

HTH

Tet

Cedar City, UT
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4. Re: 10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

My suggestion would be to not have an overly ambitious plan that includes too many parks as you'll then spend 1/2 of your time driving. That would probably kill it for the teenagers, even if it is scenic highway.

You also have to keep the heat in mind. The Moab area and Zion are both in the high 90's that time of year so morning hiking is recommended. A full day of hiking Arches in Aug. would be brutal, particularly if you are accustomed to the cooler climate of Denver. Two 1/2 days at Arches would be better. Save afternoons for slick rock tours in air conditioned Hummers, river rafting, driving to the various petroglyphs around Moab, museums, park visitor centers or hanging out at the pool.

I would recommend settling on either the southern parks of Zion, Bryce (Bryce is 9,000 ft. so all day hiking is fine) Lake Powell, Monument Valley ..... or the Moab area of Arches, Canyonlands (including the Needles district) Dead Horse Point and Fisher Towers.

The 10 days will go by quickly and you'll still have plenty to see the next trip.

Regardless of which area you choose you're going to experience fantastic country. Enjoy

Cedar City, UT
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5. Re: 10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

Regarding lodging in the Moab area we like either a VRBO or Red Cliffs Lodge on Hwy 128. With a house or condo we enjoy our own kitchen for breakfast, packing the cooler for tailgate lunches and grill & patio with a view for sunset dinners. The condos also have community pools. Red Cliffs Lodge is exceptionally beautiful, right on the Colorado River with pool, horseshoes, horseback riding, river trips, lighted tennis courts, workout room , tether ball, winery, restaurant & fun Cowboy museum. We were just there and they were offering a mid week discount that competes with Moab motel rates.

For an evening activity in Moab the 'Light & Sound' river trip is fun.

We now live within day trip distance of Bryce & Zion, but in the past have stayed at the Stone Canyon Inn in Tropic, just outside of Bryce with a beautiful view of Sunrise Point in Bryce. The Bryce Lodge usually books up well in advance, but you can also try Ruby's, at the entrance. Springdale, at the entrance of Zion, has lots of motels that you'll find online.

Am sure folks in this forum can offer many other suggestions on lodging.

Florence
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6. Re: 10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

Thanks Tet and Randi, much appreciated advice.

Tet, I like your last option, is it possible to do a day trip to Monument Valley and back while staying in Moab?

Golden, Canada
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7. Re: 10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

Sure. It's about a 5.5hr round trip drive from Moab to Monument Valley so it could be done. I'd rather stay the night if possible.

Here's a link to the mapped route Tet gave above, including MV and Page.

http://tinyurl.com/l7byzn

HTH

Sedona, AZ
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for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
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8. Re: 10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

The beauty of all of these destinations needs to be experienced in a full 24 hour cycle. Dawn and dusk or sunrise and sunset are magical times of day to fully appreciate the magnificence of these places. This is especially true of Monument Valley. So yes, you could make it there and back as a day trip from Moab, but I wouldn't do it that way. Better to experience fewer places but get the most out of them. You can't just drive there and check it off your list.

Uden, The...
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9. Re: 10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

That 5.5 hours roundtrip to Monument Valley fastest route (via Bluff) is just for the drive. Driving this way and miss the detour via Moki Dugway (261) is not recommended but will add more time plus the visit to Monument Valley. Nothing is impossible but it leaves you only one day for the Moab area and that's (too) short imo. Choices, choices.

Tet

New Boston, New...
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10. Re: 10 days vacation, what are the must see spots?

If it were me and I like Tet's last itinerary also but on day 6 I would leave mid day for Bryce so you have a full day there on the next day then take your time like almost all day to travel up scenic by way 12 to Torrey on day 8 taking some side roads along the way.

May I suggest the mule/horse back ride into Bryce - its breath taking - we did the half day tour and it was great - also the wranglers are fantastic.

Also I'd suggest while you are in Moad you do the Moab Adventures Sunset Hummer Tour - Load of fun and your Teenagers will just love it.

Safe and Happy travels.