Utah Journals

Utah for Visitors from Other Lands

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A July 2008 trip to Utah by Wasatch

Zion National Park Photo, Springdale, Utah More Photos
Quote: While Utah is a foreign culture even to other Americans, this journal is for Utah visitors from other nations who make up the majority of tourists in Utah during the high tourist season and also contribute a fair share to winter skiers.

Day Trips from Las Vegas

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Day Trips from Las VegasAlthough Las Vegas is in a pretty grim, polluted setting, there is good to great scenery close at hand. Several day trips to some fine western scenery are possible from Las Vegas, and at least one, Zion National Park, is a must. Las Vegas is about a three hour drive from Zion National Park, one of the world’s greatest scenic spots. We consider a trip to Las Vegas to be an extension of a trip to Zion..The Grand Canyon is too grand to fully appreciate from the ground. A sightseeing trip by plane, or even better, by helicopter, is best. In additon tto air tripsform Las Vegas, there are bus also one day trips, but it’s more than 600km round trip, so ther...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 2, 2010

Shopping

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Attraction | "Shop for Souveniers and Such"

Navajo  rug. Photo, Utah, United States
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The USA has no value added tax (VAT). The sales tax, a separate charge added to the cash register tally but not included in the marked price of a product, ranges from 0-8%, a considerable savings over what you pay in countries with 14-17% or higher VAT. Also, America has mass merchandising on an unprecedented scale, producing generally rower prices in the shops. A few years ago, the drop in value of the dollar against the Euro and Pound, coupled with low airfares, produced a min-boom in travel to the USA for shopping. Some visitors reported they paid for their trip with what they saved in shopping. New York City in particular reports a tourist shopping boom, but New York City...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 1, 2009

Sol Market and Café

Restaurant | "Try a Buffalo Burger"

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Sol Foods Restaurant is our favorite place at Zion for lunch and breakfast. Located just steps from the park entrance, this semi-cafeteria serves buffalo burgers for only $1 more than a hamburger. A buffalo burger is one of the best ways to try buffalo meat. Buffalo is the healthiest meat there is, with even less fat, calories, and cholesterol than skinless chicken breast, so when we come across one of those rare places in the West that serves buffalo, it is a must-have, alntohug morl efor its taste that for its health properties. . Because of its low fat content, buffalo is a very dry meat that requires something to moisturize it, like catsup, mustard, and a slice of tomato. Do not omit condiments. ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 28, 2009

Sol Market and Café
Zion
Zion National Park, Utah

Zion National Park

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Attraction | "The Not to Be Missed National Park"

Zion National Park Photo, Springdale, Utah
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Zion National Park is one of 18 National Parks within a one day drive of our home in Northern Utah. We have been to them all several times, but Zion is where we go most often. Attendance figures for Utah’s National Parks show that Zion has as many visitors as the other four combined. At first view, Zion impresses, but not as much as Bryce Canyon or the Grand Canyon. But Zion grows on you until you realize that there is nowhere better to be, if its not too hot.Although set in a desert, the diverse topography of Zion supports a remarkable range of life. Over 800 different species have been identified, more than in the Hawaiian Islands. You are likely to see deer and wild turkeys n...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 27, 2009

Zion National Park
Zion Boulevard
Zion National Park, Utah 84767
(435) 772-3256

Route 12

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Pioneer Orchard along the Freemont River Photo, Utah, United States
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WARNING: Lower Calf Creek Falls is one of the important sights along Rt 12. Access to the Lower Falls will closed for July, 2010 while construction work goes on in the campground at the start of the trail to the falls. The campground is closed too. Access to Upper Calf Creek Falls will remain open. How to find the Upper Falls: Take the trace dirt road between mileposts 81 and 82 on UT Rt 12 to the end of the road, or be smart and park just off Rt 12 and walk a few hundred feet to the trail head sign in box. From there, it’s 30-40 minutes to the falls. There is a not obvious fork in the trail With one branch leading to the top of the falls, the other to the bottom of the falls, bu as Yogi Be...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 21, 2009

What to Do with Bus Tour Free Time

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America’s National Parks are big, huge even. Yellowstone covers 9,000 sq km; The Grand Canyon, 5,000 sq km; and tiny Zion National Park is still 600 sq km. UT Rt 12 runs for 150 km across the 8,000 sq km Escalante-Grand Staircase National Monument. You will not, you cannot see it all on one trip unless you stay for years. Your bus tour will take you to the highlights, such as they are accessible by road, and most are, but you will also have some free time. Here are a few suggestions on how to best spend your free time.Zion National Park: Many tours stay at Zion Park Lodge which is right across the street from the trail to the Middle Emerald Pool, one of the best easy hikes in the par...Read More

Tips for Driving Yourself

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The Colorado Plateau covers 360,000 sq km. Zion National Park is the remains of what once was the largest desert in the history of the world, a desert that made the Sahara look like a child's sandbox. Distances are vast, even though travel time is fast. Plan ahead. Do not make the mistake some German tourists made when we met them one morning in Moab. They wanted to check with me the route for their planned day, to see Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Bryce, and Zion National Parks and be in Las Vegas in time to attend an event at 7:00pm that evening. I told them this, "Las Vegas is 800 km. It can’t be done by 7:00 pm even if you never stop. You need at least three days, and that’s a very...Read More

Utah

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Attraction | "Odd Utah"

Exterior:  The Spicy Lady Photo, Heber City, Utah
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Utah is an odd place. The landscape is odd. The people are odd. The government is beyond odd. The oddity most visitors will encounter are Utah's liquor laws. We were lunching one day at Ruby’s Inn, one mile from the entrance to Bryce Canyon National Park, when we heard a German family at the next table trying to get beer with lunch. We then had a delightful conversation with them through lunch trying to explain why they could not drink beer at lunch in Utah that day, but would be able to do so if they returned to Ruby’s for lunch the next day. Last year the State Legislature passed a law "clarifying" Utah’s liquor regulations. The "clarification" takes 186 pages. IgoUgo doesn’...Read More

Member Rating 1 out of 5 on May 19, 2009

Utah

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View from the Canyon Rim Trail Photo, Zion National Park, Utah
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At Ruby’s Inn, the largest hotel near Bryce Canyon, 75% of the guests are from outside the USA. Foreign visitors are 80% of those staying in the hotels between Arches and Canyonlands National Parks to the north and Monument Valley and the Navajo Reservation to the south. Utah is in many ways an odd place, unlike any other state in America because of its domination by the Mormon Church, so for the most successful Utah vacation, the foreign visitor needs not only to know what to see but also to be prepared for Utah’s oddities. We retired and moved to Utah to go skiing and see the scenery. Before moving to Utah, we had visited Europe many times. After six years of traveling around Utah...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 19, 2009