Phoenix has always been a favorite of mine, however this past week I got to explore some more of the southwest. My boyfriend and I road-tripped from Phoenix up to Salt Lake City, and got some mind-blowing views along the way. To make a long story short….I’m more in love than I thought possible. I love the red rocks and how they contrast with the blue sky. I love the rich history of these places. My words and pictures can’t even begin to do these places justice. I can’t wait to make my way back here in a couple of months. Below I’ve created a list of my most loved places in the southwest.
Monument Valley is a scenic 17-mile drive located on the Navajo Reservation between Utah and Arizona. On this drive you get the chance to get up close and personal with some of Utah’s giant rock formations. At the visitor center you can stop in to get to know more about the history of the place, or see the monuments via horseback with the help of a Navajo guide! On your way out of the scenic drive, you also have the chance to stand at the the famous “Forest Gump Point.”
Glen Canyon is on the border of Utah and Arizona, but is mostly in Page, AZ. We took kind of a different route and decided it would be fun to kayak around the Lone Rock area of Glen Canyon. We totally loved it, it was very private and we got to explore the areas that literally no one sees. Once you kayak across Lake Powell, you’ll come along a little hidden canyon that you can hike around. My favorite part though was the white rock, and the soft waves created by water in the formations along the shore. Plus the blues of Lake Powell made us feel like we had taken a little trip to Greece.
Canyonlands National Park
Most people know about the famous Arches National Park in Moab, but WAYYY too many people forget about Canyonlands, which is also in Moab. This place has me at a loss for words. We watched sunset here, and the colors along the canyons created one of the best sunsets I’ve ever seen. The reds and orange compliment the bright sun and leave this burst of fire within the canyons. We hiked the Mesa Arch and it did not disappoint. It’s about a mile hike roundtrip and it’s super family friendly.
Bryce Canyon is easily my favorite national park, which says a lot. Stepping out of the car, and walking to the over look I was immediately transported into the mystical land of orange creamsicle hoodoo’s. Hoodoo’s are the spiral like rock features you can see all around the park. Although the park is absolutely beautiful when blanketed in snow, if you want the chance to go down into the canyon it’s best to visit in the summer when the snow has melted. My favorite trail here is the Queen’s Garden Loop as it gives you a chance to get really up close and personal with the hoodoos.
Pretty much everyone knows this place, or has seen a picture of it. Tourist traps aside though, this place is worth seeing. Looking at pictures you think you know what it looks like until you get there, and then you do and it’s like the only thing that comes to mind is “this is massive.” The blue and green swirls of Lake Powell wrapping around the canyon below are seemingly endless and mesmerizing. On top of it all, it’s free and close to so many other attractions like Antelope Canyon and Glen Canyon.