Maybe you just have a day or two to spend in Salt Lake City, or maybe you’re new in town and want to get the feel of the place as soon as possible. Here’s a quick list of top tourist attractions in Salt Lake City, see and experience if you really want to get the flavor of this city, and find out what makes it unique.
Top Tourist Attractions In Salt Lake City
Temple Square is the holy place of the Mormons. Spread out over 35 acres, you’ll find beautiful flowering trees; colorful flowerbeds; fountains; and four key Mormon buildings: The Mormon Temple, the Mormon Tabernacle, the Temple Annex, and the Assembly Hall. In addition to these spectacular buildings, you’ll come across several historical monuments highlighting important people and events in the faith.
For a more in-depth understanding of the Church of Latter-day Saints, visit one of the two information centers at the entrances to the square. They supply information, and staff are more than happy to answer questions about the doctrines and the history of the Mormon faith and the area.
City Creek Center
City Creek Center is a gorgeous, eye-popping 700,000-square-foot shopping and dining destination. Some of the center’s notable architectural features are a retractable skylight roof, a sky bridge over Main Street connecting the east and west sides of the center, two waterfalls, a 1200-foot creek, and three electronically controlled fountains. The center is located between South Temple and 100 South, and between West Temple and State Street, with Main Street running down the center. City Creek Center features Nordstrom, Macy’s and more than 90 stores and restaurants.
Natural History Museum of Utah
The Natural History Museum of Utah is a wonderful family activity or something to do on a cold or rainy day in Salt Lake City. Housed in a spectacular copper-clad concrete building with soaring spaces, the museum has more than 40,000 square feet of displays and educational facilities with 1.6 million objects in its collection.
Approximately 5,000 items are on display at any given time, and some of the highlights include the digital globe, dinosaur fossils, and a three-story indoor canyon. There are seven permanent collections including Paleontology, Anthropology, Entomology, Vertebrate Zoology, Mineralogy, Botany, and Malacology (the study of mollusks).
The views from the observation deck out across the city and valley are spectacular.
The Gateway shopping and entertainment center was completed at the time of Salt Lake City’s 2002 Winter Olympic Games and have been a major component of the revitalization of Salt Lake’s west downtown. It’s located along 400 West, between 200 South and South Temple. The Gateway offers stores, restaurants and movie theaters, but also two of Salt Lake City’s best museums, Discovery Gateway and Clark Planetarium. It also houses The Depot, a popular live music venue that pays homage to the area’s history as a rail transportation center. The Gateway’s Olympic Snowflake Fountain is a popular place for kids to play in the summer.
Bonneville Shoreline Trail
The Bonneville Shoreline Trail is a must for mountain bikers. Marking the rim of prehistoric Lake Bonneville (now shrunk to the Great Salt Lake), it covers nearly 100 miles and offers excellent hiking and biking. Bonus: the trail can be accessed from the steps of the Natural History Museum.
Bald Mountain reaches a whopping 12,000 feet, but don’t be put off! Despite the high elevation, it is incredibly family and beginner-friendly, as the trail is easy to follow. Enjoy the surrounding wildflowers on the way up, and if you’re lucky, you may see a pika or a mountain goat!
Climb between July and September for the best view of the Alpine Lakes. Don’t be the one to reach the summit of one of Utah’s 100 most prominent peaks (at 11,947 feet) and find that you’ve forgotten your camera!
One of the top tourist attractions in Salt Lake city, Red Butte Garden is the largest botanical garden in the Intermountain West, with more than 21 acres of developed gardens and five miles of walking and hiking trails. The community-funded space is known for its numerous plant collections and display gardens as well as its education programs and special events. The Garden offers many educational programs including horticulture classes, bird watching, summer camps, art exhibits and Monday Family Nights with music and dance performances.