National parks are gaining popularity, and there are statistics to prove it. With over 4.5 million visitors to Zion National Park in 2017 alone, the park has seen the most traffic it has ever seen before. So, what does that mean for visitors? Be prepared for crowds.
Although it’s inevitable that you will run into a few other explorers, there are ways to avoid the crowds at Zion.
1. Plan your visit in the fall or right before or after Thanksgiving. Spring break and summertime draw in the highest crowd volume.
2. Park your vehicle in nearby Springdale and ride the free Springdale shuttle to the park’s entrance. Otherwise, you’ll be lucky to find a parking spot in the Zion Canyon Visitor Center lot during the busier months.
3. Don’t go to Zion on holidays like Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day or any of the free entrance days.
4. Start your hike later in the day. Most people try to get their sightseeing done first thing in the morning, but if the weather is nice enough, opt for a sunset stroll.
5. Better yet, visit the park at night! That is, of course, if you drove yourself in. Shuttle buses aren’t always available and they stop running in the evening. Review the schedule here.
6. Visit the main canyons and trails like The Narrows and Angel’s Landing on the weekdays, and the lesser known ones on the weekend.
7. According to the NPS, people who are looking to avoid the heavy crowds around Zion Canyon should instead go to Kolob Canyons, an equally gorgeous site with its own entrance.
8. Book your lodging in Kanab. While most people reserve their rooms as close to the park as possible, you can bypass the mob altogether by staying at Parry Lodge (only a 30-minute drive away).
By planning accordingly, you can experience the beauty of Zion without dealing with the masses. Prepare for your next national park vacation by reserving your room at historic Parry Lodge in Kanab, Utah. Give us a call at 435-644-2601 or visit us online to learn more.