Best Things to Do in St. George, Utah: 12 Must-Visit Places

by Emil Backup
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Are you planning a trip to the American Southwest? If so, you must consider the vibrant, scenic, and adventure-packed city of St. George, Utah. This gem of the desert is sure to provide an unforgettable travel experience. Here are some of the most fun and unique things to do in St. George, Utah.

Known for its stunning red rock landscapes, St. George is a gateway to some of the most spectacular national parks in the United States, including Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon National Park. But it’s not just the natural beauty that makes St. George a must-visit. The best things to do in St. George also offer a unique blend of heritage and adventure as the city itself is steeped in pioneer history.

From the bustling downtown area to the serene Snow Canyon State Park, from the historic St. George Tabernacle to the awe-inspiring Red Hills Desert Garden, there’s no shortage of things to do and places to visit in St. George. There truly is something for everyone. That’s why it’s crucial to know which places are best suited for your particular interests. To help, I’ve compiled a list of some of my personal favorite St. George attractions. Buckle up and get ready for an adventure! Here’s everything you need to know about the most fun things to do in St. George, Utah.

St. George, Utah's 12 must-visit places: red rock landscapes, history, adventure, and desert beauty.
St. George, Utah’s 12 must-visit places: red rock landscapes, history, adventure, and desert beauty.

Best Places to Visit in St. George, Utah

Ready to discover all the coolest things to do in St. George, Utah? As noted above, there’s something for everyone at this must-visit vacation destination. So keep reading to find out all these unique St. George places to visit.

With a wealth of outdoor activities, historical sites, and cultural attractions, there are countless St. George experiences that will appeal to all types of travelers. Whatever you’re planning, these must-sees in St. George can accommodate your needs. Here’s all the best attractions in St. George, Utah that you should know about.

1. Zion National Park

This is one of the best things to do in St. George, hands down. Just a short drive from St. George, you’ll find the breathtaking Zion National Park. Known for its towering red cliffs, cascading waterfalls, and diverse wildlife, Zion is a paradise for nature lovers and adventure seekers alike. If you’re looking for what to do in St. George, this is it!

The park offers a variety of trails for all skill levels. For a relatively easy yet rewarding hike, take the Riverside Walk. This paved trail follows the Virgin River and offers stunning views of the surrounding canyon. If you’re up for a challenge, the Angel’s Landing hike is a must. It’s strenuous and not for the faint of heart, but the panoramic views at the top are worth every step.

Don’t forget to explore the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive, a road that winds through the heart of the park, offering awe-inspiring views at every turn. And if you’re a wildlife enthusiast, keep your eyes peeled for mule deer, bighorn sheep, and numerous bird species.

Whether you’re hiking, bird-watching, or simply soaking in the views, a visit to Zion National Park is an unforgettable part of any trip to St. George. As one of the top St. George attractions, you’ll definitely want to add this to your travel itinerary.

Discover the breathtaking beauty of Zion National Park
Discover the breathtaking beauty of Zion National Park – the best place to visit in St. George!

2. Snow Canyon State Park

For a unique experience like no other, you’ll want to check out this top place to visit in St. George, Utah. Just a stone’s throw from downtown St. George, Snow Canyon State Park is a hidden gem that offers a stunning array of geological wonders and outdoor activities. Despite its name, Snow Canyon is a warm desert haven, named after early Mormon settlers Lorenzo and Erastus Snow.

The park is known for its vibrant red sandstone cliffs, ancient lava flows, and expansive sand dunes. Hiking is one of the best ways to explore Snow Canyon, with more than 38 miles of trails winding through the park. The Jenny’s Canyon Trail is a short, easy hike that leads to a beautiful slot canyon, while the Petrified Dunes Trail takes you across ancient sand dunes frozen in time.

For a unique adventure, try your hand at canyoneering in the park’s numerous slot canyons. Or, for a more leisurely experience, enjoy a picnic while taking in the stunning desert views.

Whether you’re an adrenaline junkie or a nature lover, Snow Canyon State Park offers a unique desert adventure that’s sure to be a highlight of your visit, making it one of the most fun things to do in St. George.

Unearth the best things to do in St. George: Snow Canyon State Park's majestic red rock wonderland and serenity.
Unearth the best things to do in St. George: Snow Canyon State Park’s majestic red rock wonderland and serenity.

3. St. George Historic District

History enthusiasts will love this top thing to do in St. George, Utah. For a taste of local history, head to the St. George Historic District. This area is home to several well-preserved buildings that date back to the city’s founding in the mid-19th century, offering a glimpse into the life of the early settlers.

At the heart of the district is the St. George Tabernacle, a striking white building that served as a meetinghouse and a public works building in the 1800s. Free tours of the tabernacle are available, where you can learn about its history and admire its beautiful interior.

Just a short walk away is the Brigham Young Winter Home, a charming adobe house where the Mormon leader spent his winters. The home is filled with period furniture and personal items that belonged to Brigham Young.

Don’t miss the Pioneer Courthouse, the oldest functioning courthouse in Utah, and the St. George Opera House, which now serves as a social hall. As you stroll through the district, take a moment to appreciate the charm and history of this unique part of St. George. Is this one of the coolest things to do in St. George? No doubt about it!

Step back in time at the St. George Historic District - the best place to visit in St. George.
Step back in time at the St. George Historic District – the best place to visit in St. George.

4. Red Hills Desert Garden

Looking to explore one of the best places in St. George, Utah? Add this to your bucket list! For a unique and colorful experience, visit the Red Hills Desert Garden. This 5-acre garden is Utah’s first desert conservation garden, showcasing the beauty and diversity of desert plants.

The garden features over 5,000 water-efficient plants, a 1,150-foot winding stream stocked with native and endangered fish species, and a replicated slot canyon where visitors can learn about the region’s geology. The garden’s prehistoric-themed area, complete with dinosaur tracks and plant fossils, is a hit with kids.

One of the highlights of the garden is the Conservatory, which houses a collection of rare and endangered plants from around the world. Don’t miss the Cactus Gallery, a fascinating display of cacti and succulents.

Whether you’re a gardening enthusiast or just looking for a peaceful place to relax, the Red Hills Desert Garden offers a unique and educational experience that’s sure to delight visitors of all ages. It’s easy to see why this is one of the best things to do in St. George!

Immerse yourself in the captivating beauty of Red Hills Desert Garden. A must-visit oasis in St. George.
Immerse yourself in the captivating beauty of Red Hills Desert Garden. A must-visit oasis in St. George.

5. Sand Hollow State Park

Attractions in St. George, Utah come in all shapes and sizes, but this one is among the coolest! For water lovers, Sand Hollow State Park is a must-visit. Located just outside of St. George, this state park is best known for its 1,322-acre reservoir. This is where visitors can swim, fish, and enjoy a variety of water sports.

Rent a paddleboard or kayak and explore the reservoir at your own pace, or get your adrenaline pumping with some jet skiing or wakeboarding. The park also offers excellent fishing, with bass and bluegill plentiful in the reservoir.

But there’s more to Sand Hollow than just water activities. The park is also home to the Sand Mountain, a massive sand dune where you can go off-roading. Whether you’re an experienced rider or a beginner, the dunes offer a thrilling adventure.

With its beautiful red sand beaches, clear blue waters, and exciting outdoor activities, Sand Hollow State Park offers a fun and relaxing escape from the city. For those seeking a tranquil getaway in nature, Sand Hollow State Park is one of the best places in St. George you should know about. 

Outdoor bliss at Sand Hollow State Park. A paradise for adventure seekers.
Outdoor bliss at Sand Hollow State Park. A paradise for adventure seekers. One of the best things to do in St. George.

6. Pioneer Park

It would be a crime to write an article on the top things to do in St. George, Utah without mentioning Pioneer Park. This is a local favorite in St. George, offering 52 acres of red cliffs, expansive views, and fun outdoor activities. It’s the perfect place for a family outing or a relaxing afternoon in nature.

The park is known for its unique red rock formations. This includes the Dixie Rock, a large sandstone hill that provides panoramic views of St. George and the surrounding area. It’s a popular spot for picnics, with several tables available and plenty of open space to spread out a blanket.

For the adventurous, there are numerous trails that wind through the park’s red cliffs, including a short hike to a natural stone bridge. The park also has a slot canyon that you can explore, offering a fun and easy introduction to canyoneering.

With its natural beauty and recreational opportunities, Pioneer Park is a must-visit for anyone looking to enjoy the outdoors in St. George. As such, this St. George attraction is one of the most popular sights in the state.

The rugged charm of Pioneer Park. A natural playground in St. George, Utah!
The rugged charm of Pioneer Park. A natural playground in St. George, Utah!

7. St. George Dinosaur Discovery Site at Johnson Farm

Looking for the best things to do in St. George, Utah? Don’t miss this one! Step back in time at the St. George Dinosaur Discovery Site at Johnson Farm. This is where you can see real dinosaur tracks preserved in the rock. It’s one of the most important dinosaur track sites in the world, offering a unique glimpse into the prehistoric world.

The site was discovered in 2000 when local optometrist Dr. Sheldon Johnson uncovered a large, well-preserved dinosaur track while leveling a hill on his property. Today, the site features a museum where visitors can view the tracks and learn about the dinosaurs that once roamed this area.

In addition to the dinosaur tracks, the museum also features fossil fish, plants, and rare dinosaur remains. Kids will love the interactive exhibits, including a sandbox where they can dig for their own fossils.

Whether you’re a dinosaur enthusiast or just looking for a fun and educational experience, visiting the St. George Dinosaur Discovery Site at Johnson Farm is one of the most unique St. George things to do you don’t want to miss.

Unearth the prehistoric past at St. George Dinosaur Discovery Site at Johnson Farm. The best place to visit in St. George!
Unearth the prehistoric past at St. George Dinosaur Discovery Site at Johnson Farm. The best place to visit in St. George!

8. Tuacahn Center for the Arts

Experience Utah in style at this unique place to visit in St. George. For a night of entertainment, head to the Tuacahn Center for the Arts. Nestled in the mouth of the Padre Canyon, this 1,920-seat outdoor amphitheater offers a unique and stunning setting for Broadway-style productions.

Tuacahn, which means “Canyon of the Gods” in Mayan, is known for its spectacular shows, featuring professional actors, live animals, and impressive special effects. Past productions have included popular musicals like “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast,” and “The Sound of Music.”

But it’s not just the shows that make Tuacahn special. The amphitheater itself is a sight to behold, with red rock cliffs providing a natural backdrop for the stage. Arrive early to enjoy the stunning surroundings and perhaps spot some of the local wildlife.

Whether you’re a theater lover or just looking for a memorable night out, a visit to the Tuacahn Center for the Arts is one of the coolest things to do in St. George that you should know about.

Immerse yourself in artistic brilliance at Tuacahn Center for the Arts..
Immerse yourself in artistic brilliance at Tuacahn Center for the Arts. The best place to visit in St. George.

9. Anasazi State Park Museum

Yearning for a getaway like no other? This thing to do in St. George, Utah has got you covered. Dive into the history of the Ancestral Puebloans at the Anasazi State Park Museum. Located in Boulder, a short drive from St. George, this state park and museum offer a fascinating look into the lives of the ancient Puebloans who inhabited the region over 1,000 years ago.

The park is home to one of the largest Ancestral Puebloan communities west of the Colorado River. Here, you can explore the excavated ruins of an ancient village, including partially restored pithouses and pueblo buildings.

The museum houses a variety of artifacts discovered at the site, including pottery, tools, and other everyday items. Interactive exhibits and displays provide insight into the Puebloan culture and lifestyle.

Whether you’re a history buff or just curious about the region’s past, a visit to the Anasazi State Park Museum offers a unique and educational experience. There’s just so much to see at the Anasazi State Park Museum. As such, it’s no wonder this is among the best things to do in St. George, Utah.

Step into ancient history at Anasazi State Park Museum. A must-visit in St. George!
Step into ancient history at Anasazi State Park Museum. A must-visit in St. George!

10. Quail Creek State Park

Looking for St. George activities that don’t break the bank? Then this is what you’re looking for! For a refreshing escape, head to Quail Creek State Park, a beautiful reservoir located just minutes from St. George. Known for its warm, blue waters and red rock landscape, Quail Creek is a popular spot for boating, fishing, and camping.

The reservoir is stocked with fish year-round, making it a favorite among local anglers. Species you can catch include largemouth bass, rainbow trout, and bluegill. Boat rentals are available if you want to get out on the water.

For land-based activities, there are several hiking trails around the reservoir that offer stunning views of the surrounding desert landscape. The park also has a campground with modern facilities if you want to stay overnight.

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing day by the water or an active outdoor adventure, Quail Creek State Park offers a fun and scenic getaway. As such, I recommend this thing to do in St. George, Utah to everyone I meet.

Dive into outdoor paradise at Quail Creek State Park.
Dive into outdoor paradise at Quail Creek State Park.

11. Rosenbruch Wildlife Museum

As far as things to do in St. George go, this activity is among the coolest! For a unique indoor adventure, visit the Rosenbruch Wildlife Museum. This 35,000 square foot museum offers a world-class display of more than 300 species of animals from around the globe.

The museum’s main exhibit is a quarter-mile indoor mountain pathway that winds through replicas of various wildlife habitats. It’s brimming with the sights, sounds, and even smells of the wild. As you walk the path, you’ll see lifelike displays of animals in their natural environments. This includes everything from the plains of Africa to the forests of North America.

In addition to the main exhibit, the museum also features a hands-on children’s room, a two-story mountain with a 60-foot waterfall, and a large collection of insects and butterflies.

Whether you’re an animal lover or just looking for a fun and educational experience, the Rosenbruch Wildlife Museum is one of the top places to visit in St. George, Utah that you should add to your adventure list. 

Embark on the most captivating and wild adventure at Rosenbruch Wildlife Museum, the best thing to do in St. George!
Embark on the most captivating and wild adventure at Rosenbruch Wildlife Museum, the best things to do in St. George!

12. Red Cliffs National Conservation Area

A visit to St. George would be incomplete without a trip to the Red Cliffs National Conservation Area, which guarantees a true desert adventure. This vast area, located just north of St. George, offers stunning red cliffs, unique geological formations, and a variety of outdoor activities.

The conservation area is home to a network of trails that cater to all skill levels. One of the most popular is the Red Reef Trail. This trail takes you through a narrow canyon to a series of waterfalls and pools. For a longer hike, the Cottonwood Canyon Wilderness offers more challenging trails and stunning views of the desert landscape.

The area is also rich in history, with several sites featuring petroglyphs and remnants of ancient Puebloan cultures. Don’t miss the Anasazi Valley Trail, where you can see petroglyphs and the remains of ancient granaries.

Whether you’re a hiker, a history buff, or just a nature lover, the Red Cliffs National Conservation Area offers a unique and memorable experience. This makes it one of the most unique things to do in St. George, Utah.

Breathtaking wonders of Red Cliffs National Conservation Area. A natural marvel in St. George!
Breathtaking wonders of Red Cliffs National Conservation Area. A natural marvel in St. George!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the Best Things to Do in St. George, Utah

Looking for more content on the top things to do in St. George, Utah? Here are some popular questions (and answers) I get that will help you plan your trip to St. George:

When is the best time to visit St. George, Utah?

St. George is a year-round destination, but the best time to visit depends on what you want to do. Spring and fall offer mild weather and are great for outdoor activities, while summer can be hot but is perfect for water activities at the local reservoirs.

Why do people like St. George Utah?

People are drawn to St. George, Utah, for several reasons:

  1. Scenic beauty: Nestled in the southwestern corner of Utah, St. George is surrounded by stunning red rock formations and desert landscapes.
  2. Proximity to National Parks: It serves as a gateway to Zion National Park and is also within driving distance of Bryce Canyon National Park and the Grand Canyon’s North Rim.
  3. Outdoor activities: The region offers a plethora of outdoor activities, including hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, and golfing.
  4. Mild winters: While much of Utah experiences cold winters, St. George enjoys milder temperatures, making it attractive for year-round living and a haven for “snowbirds.”
  5. Cultural and historical sites: St. George is home to historical sites, including old Mormon pioneer structures and the St. George Utah Temple.
  6. Growing community: Over the years, St. George has seen significant growth, with new amenities, shopping centers, and community events adding to its appeal.
  7. Dinosaur discoveries: The region has several sites where dinosaur tracks are preserved, intriguing both locals and visitors.

All these factors combined make St. George a popular destination for tourists, outdoor enthusiasts, retirees, and those seeking a blend of natural beauty and community living.

What outdoor activities are available in St. George?

St. George is an outdoor lover’s paradise, offering hiking, biking, rock climbing, fishing, golfing, and water sports. The city is also a gateway to several national and state parks, where you can enjoy camping, wildlife viewing, and scenic drives.

What wildlife can I see in St. George?

The St. George area is home to a variety of wildlife, including desert tortoises, Gila monsters, and a variety of birds. In the nearby national parks, you might see mule deer, bighorn sheep, and even mountain lions.

Explore the breathtaking wonders of national parks, the best thing to do in St. George!
Exploring the breathtaking wonders of national parks is one of the best things to do in St. George!

Are there any historical sites in St. George?

Yes, St. George has a rich history, with several historic buildings and sites. The St. George Historic District, the Brigham Young Winter Home, and the Anasazi State Park Museum are just a few of the places where you can learn about the area’s past.

What should I pack for a trip to St. George?

Pack clothing that can be layered, as temperatures can vary greatly throughout the day. Also pack sturdy shoes for hiking, a hat and sunscreen for sun protection, and a swimsuit for enjoying the local reservoirs and pools.

Is St. George Utah worth visiting?

Absolutely, St. George, Utah is well worth a visit! With its stunning red rock landscapes, rich history, and a plethora of outdoor activities, it offers a unique blend of natural beauty and cultural attractions that appeal to all types of travelers.

What is St. George Utah known for? 

St. George, Utah is renowned for its striking red rock landscapes and as a gateway to some of the most spectacular national and state parks in the United States, including Zion National Park and Snow Canyon State Park. Additionally, it’s known for its rich pioneer history, vibrant arts scene, and a plethora of outdoor activities, making it a beloved destination for nature lovers, history buffs, and adventure seekers alike.

Final Thoughts on Visiting St. George, Utah

St. George, Utah, is a destination that truly has it all. From the stunning red rock landscapes of Zion National Park and Snow Canyon State Park to the historic charm of the St. George Historic District, there’s something for everyone in this vibrant desert city. Whether you’re a nature lover, history buff, adrenaline junkie, or culture enthusiast, St. George promises an epic travel experience. So lace up your hiking boots and get ready to explore all that St. George has to offer.

The best things to do in St. George, Utah for all types of travelers
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