Bryce Canyon National Park may receive fewer visitors than Zion National Park (see here for when to hike Zion), but that is partly down to its remote location. It is a stunning national park and really a must-see while visiting Utah. Conveniently, all the park's facilities (visitor center, restaurants, lodge, general store, and campgrounds are close together).
As one enters Bryce Canyon, one will be left spellbound by a veritable forest of red rock hoodoos. Gaze at the handiwork of nature's many millions of years of freezing and thawing that gave rise to this field.
About Bryce Canyon
Despite its name, Bryce Canyon is not actually a canyon, but a collection of natural amphitheaters clustered along the Paunsaugunt Plateau. It is famous for its distinctive and stunning hoodoos (also called tent rocks, fairy chimneys, or earth pyramids).
Hoodoos are tall and thin spires of rock. They are typically made up of soft rock topped by harder rock. They normally form within sedimentary rock and volcanic rock formations. In Bryce Canyon, they are colorful and breathtaking being composed of red, orange, and white colors.
- Established: As A National Park In 1923
Owing to the high elevation of the park (some 8,000 to 9,000 feet) there are even opportunities for winters sport (e.g. cross-country skiing and snowshoeing).
While winter is off-season, it does provide a whole new perspective of the stunning national park. See the red rock hoodoos coated with a dusting of snow.
- Snowfall: Can Average Up To Nearly 100 Inches
- Shuttle Service: Between April and October There is A Shuttle Service To Help Reduce Congestion
- Viewpoint Hotspot: Bryce Point, Inspiration Point, Sunset Point, and Sunrise Point Are All Found Within A Couple Miles Of Each other
- Scenic Road: The Is A 18-Mile Main Road Leading From The Park's Only Entrance
- Ranger Programs: Daily Geology Talks, Rim Walks, Evening Programs, Astronomy Programs, Full Moon Hikes
Accommodation Inside The Park
For staying within the park, there are the options of camping and staying at the Lodge at Bryce Canyon.
Lodge At Bryce Canyon
The Lodge at Bryce Canyon offers one of the park's most iconic historic structures. This lodge is located just a short walk from the park's main draw - the Bryce Amphitheater. The Lodge closes during the winter season, although their Sunset Lodge remains open for a little longer from November (to November 27). There are plenty more accommodation options outside the park. See here for more accommodation information.
- Rooms: 114 Rooms (Including Motel Rooms, Cabins and Lodge Suites)
- Dining: The Lodge Has A Restaurant For Breakfast, Lunch, And Dinner
- Winter Rate: $131.00 (November 1st to 27th)
Camping In the Park
The national park offers two campgrounds (although only one is open during the winter). They are called North and Sunset and are located close to the Visitor Center (and the Byrce Canyon Lodge).
- Allocation Basis: North Campground First-Come, First-Served; Sunset Campground Can Be Reserved In Peak Times
- Winter: Sunset Campground Closed In The Winter
- Camping Fees: Tents $20 per site, RVs $30 per site
Additional Facilities In The Park
Other dining and shopping facilities in the park include the General Store and the Valhalla Pizzeria & Coffee Shop. The General Store has "grab-and-go" hot and cold foods (like pizza, soup, sandwiches, and the like). It has drinks like water, beer, and soda, as well as camping supplies and necessities. A relief for campers, it also has restrooms and showers.
Valhalla Pizzeria & Coffee Shop is ordinarily a great dining option. But It is closed for 2021 and is normally closed in the off-season from October to May.
Hiking In Bryce Canyon
Of course, one must do at least a little hiking while visiting Bryce Canyon. One can hike Bryce Canyon with one's dog, see here for some National Parks in the USA you can explore with your pooch. The park has a number of day hikes to choose from (no multiday hikes). See the National Park Service for a full list of hiking trails in the park.
- Pets: Pets Are Permitted But Only Allowed On A Leash And At Paved Trails, Picnic Areas, Etc.
- Climbing: Do Not Climb The Hoodoos
Sunset To Sunrise
The Easiest Hike With Views Of The Scenic Bryce Amphitheater.
- 1 Mile
- 1 Hour
Wall Up To A Mossy Grotto With Spectacular Icicles In Winter Dripping Mosses In Summer
- 0.8 Miles
- 1 Hour
Note: The Park Service Does Not Recommend Hiking The Trail Between 10:00 am and 6:00 pm Because It Has Become Extremely Crowded
See The Chinese Wall, Tower Bridge, And Tall Hoodoos - Benefit Of Being Less Crowded
- 8 Miles
- 4-5 Hours
Bryce Amphitheater Traverse
Descend From Bryce Point And Ascend To Sunrise Point (Tip Use The Shuttle to Return)
- 4.7 Miles
- 3-4 Hours