10 Things to Do in Salt Lake City That You Shouldn't Miss

July 23, 2017 Lean Nau

Known for the stunning backdrop afforded by the towering Wasatch Mountains – and the endless opportunities for outdoor recreation they provide – Salt Lake offers visitors a uniquely vibrant and dynamic urban experience. As one of North America’s most accessible destinations, Utah’s capital city offers year-round excitement and activities for the entire family, alongside a contemporary edginess and vitality that’s helped the “new” Salt Lake become a renowned culinary destination.
Restaurants in Salt Lake City

1. Big Cottonwood Canyon

Uintah-Wasatch-Cache National Forest, Salt Lake City, UT 84123 +1 801-521-6040
Excellent
82%
Good
15%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 937 reviews

Big Cottonwood Canyon

Located in the Wasactch Mountains, this wilderness region offers a limitless range of recreation for outdoor enthusiasts.

Reviewed By Motivator535 - Kaysville, Utah

Big Cottonwood canyon is picturesque year around including winter with tons of powder, spring and all the green, hiking on the cool during the heat of summer, and the fall colors!

This area is great for hiking, biking, all types of skiing, and snowshoeing to say the least. Check at the beginning of the canyon for restrictions, or seasonal access.

Great place to enjoy. Have fun!

2. Natural History Museum of Utah

301 S Wakara Way, Salt Lake City, UT 84108-1214 +1 801-581-6927
Excellent
79%
Good
17%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Natural History Museum of Utah

As the Utah state museum of natural history, this top attraction provides an introduction to the science in Utah's remarkable landscape! With engaging exhibits and over 5,000 artifacts on display, the Museum features Utah's paleontology discoveries, fascinating gems and minerals found world-wide, preserved artifacts from Utah's prehistoric peoples, and stories told by the five Native nations that lie within the state's boundaries. Journey to the top of a three-story indoor Canyon. Wander through Utah's dinosaurs and animal life. Interact with earthquakes, erosion, and our Digital Globe to discover how the earth's surface and the Great Salt Lake have changed over time. Enjoy breath-taking views from our observatory deck. Hike the Bonneville Shoreline trail. Experience natural history as only Utah can reveal it. Enjoy beverages, lunch or a snack at the Museum Cafe. Shop the Museum Store for unique jewelry and gift items influenced by nature's design. Visitors with young kids will enjoy Our Backyard, an intimate, discovery-based environment that invites our pre-school visitors to experience natural history first hand!

Reviewed By Kip F - Sacramento, California

We spent 4 hours there, and it was worth the trip. We started at the special exhibition of Nature's amazing machines, flight, body cooling and warming, walking, lifting etc. Interactive displays for kids and adults, and all the displays still worked. We stopped by their Life Section and enjoyed the Tree of Life digital display, the dinosaurs and the large mammal skeletons, and gems. There are 4 levels with all sorts of different exhibits, something is sure to tickle your fancy.

3. Red Butte Garden

300 S Wakara Way, Salt Lake City, UT 84108-1214 +1 801-585-0556
Excellent
73%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 698 reviews

Red Butte Garden

The Garden offers something for everyone from children who want to explore to adults looking for landscape and planting ideas. You might enjoy taking a class, packing a picnic, attending a concert or hiking. Red Butte Garden is open year-round with plant interest and events during every season. Red Butte Garden, a part of the University of Utah, is a non-profit organization located in Salt Lake City, Utah. With 100 acres including display and natural gardens, walking paths and natural areas with hiking trails, Red Butte Garden is the largest botanical garden in the Intermountain West. See the new four-acre garden highlighting water thrift beautiful plants: see, grow, save H2o.

Reviewed By happyretireds - Brentwood, Tennessee

We spent a couple of hours waling through these gardens that are situated on the hill behind the University of Utah campus. The gardens have been recently renovated and are very special! There are beautiful views facing west across the U of U campus and the valley below. There are plenty of places to sit and relax, too. Everyone who has an interest in botanical gardens should go here!

4. LDS Conference Center

60 W North Temple, Salt Lake City, UT 84150-0800 +1 801-240-0075
Excellent
80%
Good
15%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 755 reviews

LDS Conference Center

Reviewed By mrsagf - washington dc

Yet more massive, brutalist architecture, with a good attempt to soften it by instituting rooftop gardens. Lines were long for the Thursday evening rehearsal of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir (this is the summer venue), but no worries, the hall seats 21,000. This choir ARRIVES PREPARED, with music already learned. What a difference that makes.

5. Cathedral of the Madeleine

331 E South Temple, Salt Lake City, UT 84111-1295 +1 801-328-8941
Excellent
71%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 381 reviews

Cathedral of the Madeleine

Reviewed By Lebasi10

I attended eveningmass at the cathedral after arriving in SLC on a Sunday. It was a beautiful experience: the homily, the music, the gorgeous architecture... Parking was difficult, especially since I arrived a bit late. I stayed for a while after mass ended and thoroughly enjoyed several minutes of silence and prayer.

6. The Tabernacle

50 E North Temple, (at the Temple Square Tabernacle), Salt Lake City, UT 84150-9001 +1 801-240-1000
Excellent
68%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

The Tabernacle

Home to the world-famous Mormon Tabernacle Choir and the Tabernacle Organ.

Reviewed By Kip F - Sacramento, California

We stopped by here for a visit to see the organ and maybe hear some info about it. When we walked in, there was a woman demonstrating the acoustics, but no one to give a tour or info. We are looking forward to coming to their bell practice session on Wed and the choir on Thurs.

7. Smith's Ballpark

77 W 1300 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84115-5325 +1 801-325-2337
Excellent
72%
Good
26%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 134 reviews

Smith's Ballpark

Reviewed By cleichhorn - Charleston, South Carolina

We were in town visiting and decided to catch a Bees game. Beautiful ball field with spectacular view. Great gift shop, lots of food choices, and friendly and clean everywhere. Easily took the Trax green line from downtown hotel. There are some homeless around, not bothersome, just be aware. We were early, so we went across to the mini mart/gas station on the corner for a cup of coffee. Also there's a sports bar a block away it seems some wait there for game. There's not much cover if raining before gates open. Definitely check it out. Lots of fun.

8. FamilySearch Center

15 E South Temple, Salt Lake City, UT 84150-9002 +1 801-240-4085
Excellent
77%
Good
13%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 211 reviews

FamilySearch Center

Reviewed By lucyosborn - Salt Lake City, Utah

The collection of records available is unbelievable. I have been there many times, and am constantly amazed at what I find. There are plenty of experts ready to help you. I go frequently, expecting just to be there for an hour to find something specific, and find source after source, and suddenly I've been there for 6 hours and found jewels - every time!

9. Utah State Capitol

350 N State St, Salt Lake City, UT 84114-4799 +1 801-538-1800
Excellent
60%
Good
33%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Utah State Capitol

Seat of state government and striking architectural landmark.

Reviewed By LiketoeatCincinnati - Cincinnati

This is built in similar design as many statehouses. This one has wonderful murals pertaining to the history of the state. There is a large statue of Brigham Young in there, as well. The views to and from downtown are remarkable. Parking is free at visitors center across the street.

10. Salt Lake City Public Library

210 E 400 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84111-2804 +1 801-524-8200
Excellent
71%
Good
23%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 430 reviews

Salt Lake City Public Library

Reviewed By ShutterbugSage - Kansas City, Missouri

Take 30 minutes and visit the Salt Lake City Public Library! I promise you won't be disappointed! This masterpiece designed by internationally-acclaimed architect Moshe Safdie includes a six-story walkable wall, offers panoramic views of Salt Lake City, and much more.

For more details, read my 5 Reasons You Need to Visit the Salt Lake City Public Library article (link to site in profile)

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