Utah National Parks Itinerary

Old May 29th, 2017, 05:46 PM
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Utah National Parks Itinerary

Fellow Fodorites I am enlisting your aid in planning a 10 night National Parks trip for early October.
I hope you will have some suggestions for numbers of nights in each area, scenic drives to each stop on our drive & must see sites in each park. We are short distance hikers, so nothing too strenuous.
We have been to the Grand Canyon several times,so we won't need to make that stop.

Our tentative Itinerary:
1. 10pm Arrive Las Vegas Airport. Lodging near the airport
2. Pick up rental car... stop at Valley of Fire on our way to Zion National Park, overnight Springdale
3. Zion , 2nd night Springdale
4. Bryce Canyon overnight Page, Az Lake Powell cruise
5. Antelope Canyon, 2nd night Page
6. Monument Valley, overnight
7. Canyonlands, overnight Moab
8. Arches, 2nd night Moab
9. Drive to Salt Lake City Airport for trip home

Is this itinerary reasonable? We might have 1 extra night to play with. If we do, where should we spend it? I know this is a popular destination in October so I will need to make hotel reservations ASAP.
I look forward to your suggestions.
molc54 is offline  
Old May 29th, 2017, 06:14 PM
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Your plan is reasonable and I would spend the extra night in Moab. Here is a map and chart of times and distances between places that was posted here by another fodorite:


It might be helpful for your planning. Try to do your driving during the daylight hours as large animals like deer and elk on the roads and even cattle or horses in the open range areas.

I would try to get lodging in/near the parks asap and if it works to do the trip in reverse then consider going in the opposite direction. Be aware that you will probably be paying a stiff price for the drop off of the car at a different site.
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Old May 30th, 2017, 11:42 AM
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We just did a somewhat similar trip late April/Early may this year. Flew to Las Vegas Friday night then Zion, Bryce, Capitol Reef, Moab, Out of Salt Lake City Sunday afternoon. The Las Vegas pick up SLC drop off was no more than picking up and dropping off at Las Vegas and $400.00 less than doing it the other way around. All I could think of was they were trying to move cars out of Las Vegas for the summer season. I believe SLC is a popular starting point for Grand Teton/Yellowstone. Wonder if it would be the opposite in October, them wanting to move cars back to Vegas. Definitely agree on adding a night in Moab, lots to do.
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Old May 30th, 2017, 04:52 PM
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Another night in Moab. What would you suggest in addition to Arches & Canyonland?
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Old May 30th, 2017, 05:56 PM
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Its kind of a shame to not stay overnight at Bryce. You will miss the sunrise and the dark skies star show! I think you are trying to cramm in just a little too much.
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Old May 30th, 2017, 07:17 PM
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Rather than spend two nights in Page, I would spend a night at Bryce Canyon. Catch the gorgeous sunrise, then drive to Page for your cruise.

Go to Antelope Canyon the next day, then drive to Monument Valley.

Lee Ann
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