Gooseberry Lodge is located in Apple Valley, Utah, which is part way between the city of Hurricane, Utah, and the Northern border of Arizona. This means that our Utah cabins are perfectly positioned to explore some of Southern Utah’s most popular outdoor destinations.
While our Utah cabins make for popular Zion vacation rentals, there’s much more to discover than the nearby national park. Keep reading to learn some of the best day trips to enjoy during your stay.
1. St. George Dinosaur Discovery Site
Located just a half hour away from our Utah cabins, the St. George Dinosaur Discovery Site is the perfect day trip for families, history buffs, or anyone looking to get out of the heat and sun for a few hours. This interactive museum is home to a remarkable paleontological discovery and offers a glimpse into our Earth’s history and the incredible creatures that once roamed it.
The St. George Dinosaur Discovery Site is located on the site of a set of preserved dinosaur footprints dating back to the early Jurassic period. The tracks are from several species, including theropods and sauropods. These tracks were discovered by a landowner who was digging on his property in the early 2000s. Since that time, the site has been excavated and studied by paleontologists, and a museum and education center has been built on site.
Today, guests can walk along a raised platform, covered by a shade awning, to view the dinosaur tracks. You can explore the air-conditioned museum and center, and learn about the prehistoric giants that once inhabited Southern Utah. The museum also has a large collection of fossils and other artifacts on display.
2. Sand Hollow State Park
Sand Hollow State Park is truly an oasis in the desert. This state park is located just a half hour from our Zion National Park cabins, in nearby Hurricane, Utah.
The centerpiece of this 20,000-acre state park is the Sand Hollow Reservoir. This freshwater lake covers more than 1,300 acres and is surrounded by towering sandstone cliffs. The crystal-clear waters of the reservoir are popular for boating jet skiing, swimming, and more.
While the reservoir is the park’s most popular feature, there’s also plenty to see and do on land. The park is located adjacent to a massive tract of land managed by the Bureau of Land Management. This area is a playground for off-road vehicles, including ATVS, UTVs and dirt bikes. You can bring your own off-road vehicle or join a tour to race across sand dunes, over rocky expanses, and stare down deep canyons. While not the park’s most popular activity, there are also several hiking trails to help you get a better look at the reservoir and the off-road area.
3. Bryce Canyon National Park
While this next day trip is the furthest from our Zion vacation rentals, if you’re looking to experience another stunning national park during your stay, Bryce Canyon is a great choice. Bryce Canyon National Park is just over two hours from our Utah cabins by car. While not as well-known as Zion, Bryce Canyon is Utah’s second most-visited national park.
This unique park spans more than 35,000 acres and is renowned for its stunning natural amphitheater, Bryce’s crowning feature. The amphitheater is filled with interesting rock formations called hoodoos. These otherworldly spires of rock have been carved over millions of years of erosion. The large concentration of hoodoos—the largest in the world—makes for a surreal landscape that looks like something from a fantasy novel.
One of the best spots for viewing the park’s unique landscapes is called Sunrise Point. Here, you can watch as the changing colors of both sunrise and sunset bring the canyon to life. In 2023, Bryce Canyon will celebrate 100 years since its creation.
4. Moqui Cave
Moqui Cave is a natural history museum and historic site located five miles from Kanab, Utah, around an hour from Gooseberry Lodge. This incredible site is home to a museum located inside of a cave. Inside the museum, you can view a large collection of Native American artifacts, including over 1,000 arrowheads, ceremonial pots, tools, and more.
The cave itself has a unique history, having been used as a dance hall and bar in the 1950s. In addition to the museum, the cave houses the largest collection of fluorescent minerals in the U.S., a gift and rock shop, and more.
This roadside attraction is a great addition to a day trip to Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park, one of the many Utah state parks located just a short drive from our Utah cabins.
Planning Day Trips From Our Utah Cabins
Whether you want to get out of the heat, take a break from hiking, or explore some of the other incredible landscapes the region is home to, these are a few of the best day trips to take from our Utah cabins. Leave room in your itinerary to explore one or all of these unique destinations during your stay at Gooseberry Lodges!
Ready to start planning your next Southern Utah adventure? Book your stay at Gooseberry Lodges today!