Your Next Trip TRAVEL GUIDE

arches national park

Ready for an unforgettable journey through Arches National Park? It’s a desert wonderland just outside of Moab, Utah. Covering over 76,000 acres, the park boasts more than 2,000 natural sandstone arches, the highest concentration in the world. Discover the rich cultural heritage of the Ute and Navajo tribes, whose stories are etched in ancient petroglyphs and explore the gravity-defying Balanced Rock and gaze through The Windows, natural formations that frame the landscape like massive stone portals. When night falls, Arches transforms into a stargazer’s dream, being a certified International Dark Sky Park. Uncover the tales, history, and stunning beauty of this natural masterpiece sculpted by Mother Nature. 

Now, check out our recommendations featured in this episode and more!

What to do

Arches National Park

Explore over 2,000 natural sandstone arches, including the famous Delicate Arch. Enjoy hiking, photography, and breathtaking views at every corner.

*See below for Arches National Park best tips

Dead Horse Point State Park

Known for its dramatic views of the Colorado River, this park offers hiking, mountain biking, and photography opportunities. Don’t miss the overlook for stunning sunset views.

Moab Giants Dinosaur Park

Journey back in time with life-sized dinosaur replicas, interactive exhibits, and a 3D cinema experience. Great for families and dinosaur enthusiasts.

  • Address: 112 UT-313, Moab, UT 84532
  • Hours: 10 AM – 6 PM daily
  • Cost: Adults $22, Children (3-12) $15
  • Website: Moab Giants

Hell’s Revenge 4×4 Trail

Experience the thrill of off-roading on one of Moab’s most famous 4×4 trails. Tours typically include a guide and all necessary equipment.

  • Address: 401 N Main St, Moab, UT 84532
  • Hours: Varies by tour
  • Cost: Varies by tour operator

Where to stay

Sorrel River Ranch Resort & Spa

A luxury resort offering rustic yet elegant accommodations, spa services, and outdoor activities. Perfect for those seeking a serene escape.

Moab Springs Ranch

Stay in private bungalows or spacious townhouses. The ranch features a private park with hammocks, a pond, and a heated pool.

Red Cliffs Lodge

Nestled along the Colorado River, this lodge offers stunning views, horseback riding, and a winery. Ideal for adventure lovers and wine enthusiasts.

And there’s tons of other fabulous places to stay during your trip.

Check out the best accommodation deals below.

What to eat

The Broken Oar Restaurant

Enjoy hearty American cuisine with a Southwestern twist. Popular dishes include prime rib, fish tacos, and bison burgers.

  • Address: 53 W 400 N, Moab, UT 84532
  • Hours: 5 PM – 9 PM daily
  • Cost: $$-$$$
  • Website: The Broken Oar

Arches Thai

Savor authentic Thai flavors in the heart of Moab. The menu features classics like Pad Thai, green curry, and fresh spring rolls.

  • Address: 60 N 100 W, Moab, UT 84532
  • Hours: 11 AM – 9 PM daily
  • Cost: $$-$$$
  • Website: Arches Thai

Moab Brewery

A local favorite for craft beers and pub fare. Try their famous Dead Horse Ale and pair it with a burger or fish and chips.

  • Address: 686 S Main St, Moab, UT 84532
  • Hours: 11:30 AM – 10 PM daily
  • Cost: $$-$$$
  • Website: Moab Brewery

Zax Restaurant & Watering Hole

Casual dining with a variety of options including pizza, salads, and steaks. Great for families and groups looking for a relaxed atmosphere.

  • Address: 96 S Main St, Moab, UT 84532
  • Hours: 11 AM – 10 PM daily
  • Cost: $$-$$$
  • Website: Zax Restaurant

Recommendations for Arches National Park

Must-See Arches

Delicate Arch:

  • Details: The iconic freestanding arch is a must-see.
  • Time: Plan for 2-3 hours (3-mile round trip hike).
  • Tips: Go early or late in the day to avoid crowds and heat. Expect a line for photos at the arch.

The Windows Section:

  • Details: Includes North Window, South Window, and Turret Arch.
  • Time: 1-2 hours.
  • Tips: Easy hikes with stunning views. Great for sunrise or sunset.

Double Arch:

  • Details: Two large arches sharing the same stone foundation.
  • Time: 30-45 minutes.
  • Tips: Short walk from the parking area. Excellent for photography.

Landscape Arch:

  • Details: One of the longest natural arches in the world.
  • Time: 1-2 hours (1.6-mile round trip hike).
  • Tips: The trail is relatively flat and easy.

Balanced Rock:

  • Details: A large rock precariously balanced on a narrow pedestal.
  • Time: 15-30 minutes.
  • Tips: Quick stop with a short, easy loop trail.

Travel Tips

  • Best Time to Visit

    Spring (March-May) and Fall (September-November) for mild temperatures and fewer crowds.

  • Time Required

    Plan at least one full day to explore the main attractions. Two to three days allow for a more relaxed experience and additional hikes.

  • Reservations

    Timed Entry: Reservations are required for park entry from April 1 to October 31.

    Camping: If you plan to camp, book a site at Devils Garden Campground in advance.

    Book through Recreation.gov.

  • Peak Times

    The park is busiest in the morning and late afternoon. Arrive early to secure parking and avoid the largest crowds.

    Popular spots like Delicate Arch often have lines for photos. Be patient and respectful of other visitors.

  • Getting Around

    Renting a car is essential for exploring the area. Consider a 4x4 for off-road adventures.

  • Safety Tips

    Stay hydrated, wear sunscreen, and be aware of the weather.

    Always check trail conditions and park alerts.

    Stay on marked trails to protect fragile landscapes and ensure your safety. Always carry a map and check for any trail closures or alerts.

  • Accessibility

    Many arches and viewpoints are accessible via short, easy trails. The park also offers several accessible trails for visitors with mobility challenges.

  • Weather

    Summers can be extremely hot. Bring plenty of water, wear sun protection, and hike early in the day. Winters can be cold, so dress in layers.

  • Helpful Notes

    Adapter: US Type A and B (120V)

Packing list

Here’s our suggested items to pack for this destination. Please always consider the weather and activities you will be doing.

Clothing:

  • Hiking Boots: Sturdy and comfortable for trails.
  • Quick-Dry Clothing: Lightweight shirts, pants, and shorts.
  • Layers: Light jacket or fleece for cooler mornings/evenings.
  • Hat & Sunglasses: For sun protection.
  • Swimsuit: For swimming and water activities.
  • Rain Jacket: Weather can be unpredictable.

Accessories:

  • Daypack: For carrying essentials during hikes.
  • Hydration System: Refillable water bottles or hydration packs.
  • Sunscreen & Lip Balm: High SPF to protect from strong sun.
  • Insect Repellent: Especially during the warmer months.
  • Binoculars: For wildlife viewing and stargazing.

Gear:

  • Camera/Smartphone: To capture stunning landscapes.
  • Headlamp/Flashlight: For early morning or evening hikes.
  • Trekking Poles: Optional but useful for challenging trails.
  • First Aid Kit: Basic supplies for minor injuries.
  • Map/Compass/GPS: For navigation in remote areas.

Miscellaneous:

  • Snacks/Energy Bars: For quick energy boosts on the go.
  • Portable Charger: To keep devices powered during long days.
  • Multi-tool/Swiss Army Knife: Handy for various tasks.
  • Travel Guidebook: For additional information and tips.

Seasonal Items:

  • Winter: Thermal layers, gloves, beanie, and a heavier jacket.
  • Summer: Lightweight, breathable clothing, and extra sunscreen.

Optional:

  • Camping Gear: Tent, sleeping bag, and cooking supplies if camping.
  • Swim Shoes: For water activities in rivers or lakes.
  • Telescope: For stargazing in the International Dark Sky Park.

Get a full packing list and free downloadable template at Pack Better

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