Utah is an adventure playground like nowhere else. The only US state where every county contains part of a national forest, home to seven of America’s national monuments, and a place that houses the largest salt lake in the western world. You’ll be hard pushed to find an adventure itch you can’t scratch in this vast hotbed of natural wonders.

Nestled among the deserts, mountains, and forests that create Utah’s impressive scenery, you’ll find the Mighty 5: the state’s famed National Parks (Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, and Zion).

But we think you should look beyond the Mighty 5 too. Because if you do, you’ll see that Utah offers up much more for thrill-seekers and adventurers alike. So, we’ve teamed up with Utah Office of Tourism to put together a handy list of places to go and things to do away from the state’s more popular attractions. All of them sure to provide you with plenty of opportunities to enjoy Utah in all its untamed glory.

1. Slot Canyoning 

Nowhere on Earth has more slot canyons than Utah. Slot canyons are narrow gorges in soft rocks (see above) and a real challenge for any adventurer. Must-do canyoning routes when visiting Utah include Peek-a-Boo Canyon (9 miles north of Kanab) and Buckskin Gulch, a staggering 1.75-mile stretch that has the honour of being the longest slot canyon in the world.

New to canyoning? A guided adventure is the best way to go. This way, you’ll get all the gear and advice you need, as well as a chance to understand the history of these stunning rock formations.

2. Water Sports

If you like getting wet on your adventures, Utah has plenty to offer up too. For thrill-seekers, rapids along the state’s stretch of the Colorado River are ideal. But if you prefer a more chilled-out aquatic activity, why not give house-boating on Lake Powell a try. Exactly what it sounds like, you’ll literally set up camp on the water and watch the world go by.

And if you like dipping your head below the waterline, take a trip to the Homestead Crater: a unique geothermal hot spring hidden inside a 17m limestone dome, where you can swim, snorkel, and scuba dive to your heart’s content.

3. Snow Sports

Despite being sunny for around 300 days a year, Utah is equally proud of its snow. The snow in the state is said to be softer and drier than most you find, which has led to it being dubbed the Greatest Snow on Earth. Ten of Utah’s 15 ski resorts are found within an hour of Salt Lake City’s airport. And if you like tubing and bobsleigh, head to Utah Olympic Park, where you can also watch Olympians train or take a guided tour of facilities used for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games
Did you miss our previous article…