Why Kanab, Utah Is A Must-Visit Place On Every Hiker's List
Photo Credit: TN

Photo Credit: TN

Why Kanab, Utah Is A Must-Visit Place On Every Hiker's List

Dr. Diana Rangaves
Dr. Diana Rangaves Aug 31, 2023

There are so many fantastic things to do in, Kanab, Utah, from grand national parks to isolated hidden gems, that visiting should be at the top of every traveler’s agenda. Kanab is a small town known for being one of the best spots to explore Bryce Canyon, Zion National Park, and the Grand Canyon National Park. If you are planning a journey through the state and national parks, you should consider stopping here for convenience and the area’s wonderful natural features.

To properly begin to appreciate the splendor of southern Utah, you will need to schedule a week or more in the region due to the vast area ripe for exploration. Its stunning terrain has served as the setting for hundreds of Western films over the years, earning the community the nickname “Little Hollywood of Utah.”

What To Do In Kanab, Utah

The breathtaking national, state, and local parks and canyons in the vicinity are one of Kanab, Utah’s main attractions. With the opportunity to hike through slot canyons and sand caves and view some memorable rock formations, it is a haven for nature enthusiasts. If you enjoy being outside, you will always have things to do in Kanab. Here are a couple of the top parks and canyons you will not want to miss:

Bryce Canyon National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park is about an hour and a half drive from Kanab. It is one of Utah’s Mighty Five National Parks. The hikes in the national park range from the easy Navajo Loop to the difficult Fairyland Loop. Sunset Point is a great place to enjoy views of Thor’s Hammer as well as Silent City.

Horseback riding, mountain biking, ATV excursions, and ranger-led activities like full moon hikes and astronomy programs are all available in and near the park.

Zion National Park

Kanab, Utah, is the ideal area to base oneself for a visit to Zion National Park, one of the most well-known national parks in the United States and another of the Mighty Five. It is only 30 miles from Kanab to Zion National Park. Angel’s Landing and Echo Canyon are two of the park’s most popular attractions. The Zion Canyon Scenic Drive is also available for people who want to see the sights without hiking.

Pipe Spring National Park

Imagine discovering an oasis amid a vast desert. That is precisely what happened between Arizona’s Grand Canyon and the Vermillion Cliffs. For ages, hunter-gatherers, Spanish explorers, and Mormon immigrants running from persecution congregated at Pipe Spring National Park. From Kanab, the park is just 20 minutes away.

You will come across traditional kahns built from juniper branches and brush that formerly offered shelter for the Kaibab Paiute as you explore the area. There is also the remarkable “Winsor Castle” ranch home, which housed the Mormon pioneers. If you are feeling adventurous, take a walk down the Ridge Trail.

The Wave

The Wave is arguably one of the most famous online photographs in the last 20 years. This otherworldly rock structure on the Arizona and Utah border is famous worldwide. People worldwide recognize the renowned image used to promote the 2002 Olympics in Utah and Microsoft’s Windows 7 release.

However, seeing The Wave in person takes a lot of work. The federal government restricts visitors to only 64 per day. You will face a challenging hike if you are fortunate enough to obtain a permit.

The White Pocket Formations

White Pocket is sometimes called the “lesser Wave,” although it is incredibly unique in its own way. Various Wave-like formations can be found throughout the site. While the Wave is a small sight, White Pocket is a large rock formation that can be explored for days. White Pocket does not require as much trekking as the Wave, but driving there is much more difficult. The 44-mile road trip, on the other hand, is all part of the adventure. Tours are available if you are uncomfortable driving yourself or want to avoid that excitement.

Grand Canyon National Park

Kanab, Utah, is a lovely spot for those who want to explore the Grand Canyon’s North Rim, as it is only a 2-hour drive away. The short Bright Angel Point Hike from the Grand Canyon Lodge and a picturesque drive are two of the most popular things to do on the Grand Canyon North Rim.

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park

The Coral Pink Sand Dunes, located just north of Kanab, is a state park with almost 300 acres of pink and red sand. These dunes are suitable for deep sand off-roading with ATVs or dune buggies. Because of the park’s dark sky, Coral Pink Sand Dunes is ideal for photography and astrophotography.

Horseshoe Bend and Page, Arizona

Page, Arizona, is about a 75-minute drive from Kanab and serves as the entry point to Lake Powell and the Navajo Nation Tribal Lands.  Most people, however, come to see the Horseshoe curve, a renowned curve in the Colorado River. The parking lot and trailhead are around 3 miles outside of town, and you should expect the area to be completely crowded. However, views are unrivaled.

Stay A While And Take It All In

Some of Utah’s most unusual desert scenery may be found on the top walks around Kanab, including undulating dunes, red-rock caverns, slot canyons, hoodoos, rivers, and magnificent slick rock formations. Kanab boasts a variety of lodging alternatives that serve as a good base camp for exploring the surrounding area. The only problem is that a weekend will not suffice! Many hotels, cottages, and boutique alternatives in Kanab offer extended stays.

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