This eastern Utah city with two national parks on its doorstep is a magnet for hikers, bikers and outdoor enthusiasts.
Surrounded by a sandstone wilderness of red rock canyons, cliffs and bizarre rock formations, Moab is one of Utah’s most popular outdoor playgrounds. The town may be small, but its setting attracts large numbers of visitors every year who hike, bike, jeep, boat, raft and camp amid the mountains and valleys.
Drive out to Arches National Park, just five miles (eight kilometers) north of Moab. Within its 76,518 acres (30,965 hectares) are more than 2,000 natural sandstone arches. There is a 36-mile (58-kilometer) paved roundtrip scenic drive that takes you to many of the park’s major attractions. Alternatively, hike one of the trails. They range from short ten-minute walks to four-hour hikes. Stay overnight in the Devils Garden Campground, situated approximately 18 miles (29 kilometers) from the park entrance.
Explore the Canyonlands National Park by foot, boat, or car. Sculpted by the Colorado River, the park is a desert landscape of sandstone plateaus and pillars. See real dinosaur fossils at the Mill Canyon Dinosaur Trail. This self-guided tour provides close-up views of prehistoric dinosaur bones still encased in rock.
The rugged terrain surrounding Moab lends itself to a range of adventurous activities. The area is a famous mountain biking destination with dozens of trails for all experience levels. One of the most popular routes for experienced bikers is the Slickrock Trail. This is a 13-mile (20.9-kilometer) loop that winds through tricky rocky terrain. Alternatively, explore the rugged local landscape with an off-road jeep tour.
The Colorado River runs through Moab and offers a variety of adventures on the water. Enjoy an intense ride over whitewater rapids or canoe or kayak in some of the river’s gentler sections.
The town of Moab has its own attractions. Pick up a one-of-a-kind painting or sculpture at one of the fine art galleries that showcase the work of local artists. Learn about the area’s history from prehistoric times to the present day at the Museum of Moab. Dine in the restaurants and bars, including Eddie McStiff’s with its own microbrewery.