Salt Lake City's top activities, in any season

Utah is famous for many things, but its Mormons and mountains are probably the most well-known of all. And though those aren't the only things Salt Lake City has to offer, they do play a big role in the area's culture.

Whether you're Mormon or not, it would be blasphemous to visit Salt Lake City without taking a trip to Temple Square, the very center of the Latter-day Saints religion. Here you can take a free, missionary-led tour of the grounds and listen to a rehearsal or concert of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. During the summer, you'll see hundreds of thousands of flowers a' bloom – and, during the holidays, as many decorative lights twinkling. While there, take a trip to the Family History Library to research your own genealogy. But just don't expect to see the insides of the Temple itself; this is a privilege reserved for only the most pious of Mormons.

If your visit falls during winter, head up into the canyons to ski at Alta or Snowbird, two of Utah's most famous and classic resorts. If you're looking for a more laid-back atmosphere, and enjoy a little hiking to reach secret stashes, Alta is your place. But if you want a fast-paced, big mountain-style resort with a top-to-bottom tram, head to Snowbird.

During the summer, both resorts open their slopes to hikers and bikers. Give yourself a break from the valley heat and enjoy some fresh, high-elevation Wasatch air while you look at wildflowers or rock climb on the limestone of Albion Basin.

Of course, the city and its surroundings have many other offerings. Stop by the museums to learn about the area's history and geology. Or consider a Utah Jazz game to catch some NBA action. Whatever the season of your trip, you'll find that Salt Lake City has a generous and diverse set of attractions.

Open since the late 1930s, Alta is the country's second oldest ski resort. This popular venue has long been synonymous with great downhill skiing, hidden powder stashes, and great tree runs. Advanced skiers from around the world rave about...  Read More

Southwest Salt Lake City
Front Climbing Club
Photo courtesy of David Sjöquist

Looking around Salt Lake City, it's not hard to imagine that this area is home to one of the nation's biggest rock climbing communities. With such an active and large group of climbers, it is only fitting that the city itself should contain...  Read More

Red Butte Garden and Arboretum
Photo courtesy of Jennifer Boren

The Red Butte Garden and Arboretum stands on the far northern edge of Salt Lake City, occupying the margin between the city and Wasatch foothills, above. Filled with life, and spanning more than 100 acres, the gardens and arboretum of Red Butte...  Read More

Salt Lake City has been home to this National Basketball Association team since 1979. Playing home games in the Energy Solutions Arena (formerly Delta Center), in the center of downtown, this team keeps a busy schedule, playing games from...  Read More

Utah Museum of Contemporary Art

Long known as the Salt Lake Art Center, the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art got a new name in 2012. Founded in 1931, it has grown to be a thriving community art hub, offering both exhibits and educational programs alike. On display are the works...  Read More

Bonneville Shoreline Trail
Photo courtesy of Ted Percival

If standing in Salt Lake City, look at the foothills towering above town, to your north and east. It is there that the Bonneville Shoreline Trail crisscrosses above the city, covering roughly 100 total miles. This trail has no map, but instead...  Read More

Antelope Island State Park

Great Salt Lake's largest island owes its name to John C. Fremont, who hunted antelope there in 1845. Several years later, a herd of 17 bison was introduced to the island, and their descendants now number around 600 and share the island with a...  Read More

Utah has some seriously big mountains. And Snowbird is one of the biggest resorts in the Wasatch Range. With 3,200 feet of vertical relief, 2,500 skiable acres, a top-to-bottom tram, and some of the most serious chutes and cliff lines in all of...  Read More

Natural History Museum of Utah
Photo courtesy of Jennifer Boren

Utah contains an incredible variety of geology, from the peaks of the Wasatch and Uinta mountains, through the expansive red rock deserts, to the bottom of Desolation Canyon. Throughout time, the state has been occupied by dinosaurs, mammoths,...  Read More

The central location of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, this ten-acre square is home to a number of significant structures. Informative tours of the popular attraction provide historical facts about the magnificent Mormon...  Read More


Meet Christine Balaz

Christine Balaz began her unexpected writing career in Salt Lake City with her first book on Wasatch Skiing and Travel in 2006. On the subject of Utah, Christine has written numerous...  More About Christine