25 Best Things to Do in Salt Lake City | 2024 (with Photos)

Ata Ahmadi

Ata Ahmadi - Travel Writer

Published: June 30, 2023

Hey there! I'm Ata, a seasoned traveler who has explored every nook and cranny of Salt Lake City. With my love for this vibrant city fueled by its breathtaking landscapes, rich history, vibrant arts scene, delicious cuisine, and limitless outdoor activities, I'm excited to share with you the 25 best things to do in Salt Lake City. Get ready for an unforgettable adventure!

Utah State Capitol Building

Salt Lake City is one of the most vibrant and culturally rich cities in America.

With an impressive skyline, a flourishing arts scene, and plenty of outdoor activities, it's easy to see why Salt Lake City is a great destination for vacations and weekend getaways.

Whether you're looking for a leisurely day trip to Salt Lake City or an action-packed weekend away from Salt Lake City, you can find plenty of fun things to do in Salt Lake City, Utah.

So, let's explore 25 of the best things to do in this busy city.

Most Recommended Thing to Do


Top Choice Hotel

Grand America Hotel

Our Top Choice Restaurant

Epic Casual Dining

Our Top Choice Bar for Nightlife

Whiskey Street

Best Time to Visit

Best time to visit Salt Lake City, USA:

Average Temperature

Moderate temperatures with varying hot and cold weather.

Transportation Options

Buses, Light Rail, Car Rentals, Ride-sharing, Biking.

Average Cost ($, $$, $$$)


My Top Recommendation

One must-visit recommendation is to explore the breathtaking beauty of the Great Salt Lake - immerse yourself in the serenity of its turquoise waters and take in the stunning views of the surrounding mountains, making it a truly unforgettable experience.

Additionally, I highly recommend taking a stroll through the historic Temple Square, where you can discover the rich cultural and religious heritage of Salt Lake City, as well as admire the stunning architecture of the Mormon Temple and its beautifully landscaped gardens.

What You'll Need to Bring

  1. Appropriate clothing for the season and activities you plan to do.
  2. Comfortable walking shoes.
  3. A camera or smartphone for capturing memories.
  4. Travel documents like passports, IDs, and tickets.
  5. Money or credit cards for expenses.
  6. A travel guide or map of the city.
  7. Personal toiletries and medications.
  8. A reusable water bottle.
  9. Snacks for when you're on the go.
  10. Chargers for your electronic devices.

What Not to Miss

  1. Temple Square
  2. Utah State Capitol
  3. Bonneville Salt Flats
  4. Hogle Zoo
  5. Red Butte Garden
  6. Big Cottonwood Canyon
  7. Jordan River Parkway
  8. Great Salt Lake

What to Avoid

  1. Rush hour traffic
  2. Street parking
  3. Unprotected outdoor activities during summer
  4. Neglecting altitude sickness precautions
  5. Ignoring local etiquette at religious places
  6. Not researching liquor laws
  7. Disregarding outdoor safety guidelines
  8. Trespassing on private property

1. Watch the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square

Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square

The Tabernacle Choir at Salt Lake City Temple Square is known for its beautiful music. Once you make your way to Temple Square, you'll be immediately transfixed by the sound of the choir's harmonious melodies that have been enchanting audiences in Salt Lake City for over 150 years.

The Tabernacle Choir is composed of 360 volunteer members from all parts of the United States who come together to create a unique and awe-inspiring sound in Salt Lake City.

Whether you live in Salt Lake City or are visiting, you can experience this majestic group's talent firsthand by attending one of their free concerts held every week throughout the year in Salt Lake City.

2. Explore the Utah State Capitol Building

Utah State Capitol Building

The Utah State Capitol Building is a stunning building in downtown Salt Lake City, Utah, home to the state government of Utah.

Situated at the top of Capitol Hill overlooking Salt Lake City and near Liberty Park, it stands as a symbol of democracy and freedom.

Visitors can explore the Utah State Capitol Building, discovering its many facets and stories about Salt Lake City along the way. You can even take yourself on a self-guided free tour.

The Utah State Capitol, completed in 1916, boasts several distinctive features that are worth exploring. Make sure to add a trip to Capitol Hill to your list of fun things to do in Salt Lake City.

3. Cool Down at Lagoon Amusement Park

Lagoon-A-Beach at Lagoon Amusement Park

Lagoon Amusement Park in Salt Lake City is the perfect place to cool down this summer. With a swimming pool, water slides, and a lazy river, visitors of all ages can find something fun to do and beat the heat of Salt Lake City.

All areas are monitored by lifeguards and feature several amenities like cabanas and refreshment stands, making it a great place to take your kids in Salt Lake City.

4. Visit the Great Salt Lake

Great Salt Lake

If you're looking to explore a unique landscape, Great Salt Lake is an ideal destination no matter the season.

Located in northern Salt Lake City, Utah, the Great Salt Lake is the largest saltwater lake West of the Mississippi River and offers hiking trails and stunning views of nearby mountain ranges.

Visitors of the Great Salt Lake can take advantage of a variety of activities at the Great Salt Lake, such as swimming, sailing, kayaking, and birdwatching. You can also enjoy beautiful sunsets over the Great Salt Lake from one of several scenic spots around its shoreline.

Along with this state park, you can also find other state parks and national parks near Salt Lake City, like Antelope Island State Park nearby.

5. Take a Hike Through Red Butte Garden

Red Butte Garden

Head to Red Butte Garden if you are looking for a way to explore the outdoors near Salt Lake City. The botanical garden is located at the University of Utah and offers spectacular views of the Wasatch Mountains.

Located on over 100 acres, the Red Butte Garden in Salt Lake City features a variety of trails that cater to all skill levels.

Whether you want to take your bike on some biking trails or enjoy the wilderness through the hiking trails, Red Butte Botanical Garden is a must for your list of things to do in Salt Lake City.

6. Visit the Beehive House

Beehive House

Are you looking for a unique and fun activity for nature lovers on your next trip to Salt Lake City? Look no further than the Beehive House.

Located in downtown Salt Lake City, this historic house was built in 1854 and is the oldest standing building in Salt Lake City itself. Visitors can explore its rich history as it's the first county building and the first governor's mansion in Salt Lake City.

The Beehive House offers guided tours that provide insight into what life in Salt Lake City was like during the 19th century. As you walk through each room of the house, you get an up-close look at how these early pioneers lived their lives.

7. Go on the Salt Lake Trolley Tours

Salt Lake Trolley Tours

The Salt Lake City Trolley Tours offer engaging and educational programs, taking you through the vibrant heart of this city. They are among Utah's most enjoyable activities. You'll get an insight into some of its famous landmarks, such as the Salt Lake Temple and the Utah State Capitol.

The guides are friendly, knowledgeable locals who can fill you in on the history and culture of Salt Lake City. Other stops include sites like Liberty Park, Place Heritage Park, Salt Palace Convention Center, and Gilgal Garden, each with its own unique story to tell.

8. Admire the Charming Marmalade Hill Historic District

Marmalade Hill Historic District

The inviting neighborhood of Marmalade Hill Historic District is located in the heart of Salt Lake City. Home to a wide range of styles and architectural treasures, this quaint and charming district is sure to make you fall in love with its charm and beauty.

The area is rich in history, featuring some of the oldest homes in Salt Lake City, Utah. Many residences have been carefully preserved over time, so visitors can admire the 19th-century Victorian architecture that makes the area so unique.

9. See World-Class Exhibits at the Natural History Museum of Utah

 Natural History Museum of Utah

Located on the University of Utah campus in Salt Lake City, the Natural History Museum offers visitors an array of interactive exhibits that explore the state’s diverse geology, history, ecology, and cultures.

If you are a history nerd, make sure to add this to your list of fun things to do in Salt Lake City. From dinosaur fossils to a 3.5 billion-year-old rock from Stromatolites National Park in Australia, the Natural History Museum is full of amazing displays from across the globe.

Visitors of this Salt Lake City museum can also explore artifacts from Native American tribes as well as take part in interactive activities like geology puzzles and simulated archaeological excavations.

10. Take a Day Trip to Park City

Park City

If you are looking for fun things to do when visiting Salt Lake City, Utah, look no further than a day trip to Park City. This charming mountain town is just a short drive away from Salt Lake City and offers plenty of exciting activities that will make your day trip unforgettable.

From skiing to snowboarding, and snowshoeing to sleigh rides, you can find fun things to do at Park City. Take advantage of the breathtaking views by hopping on the ski lift to get an aerial view of all that Park City has to offer.

You can also take a break from skiing by visiting Park City and trying out some tubing at Gorgoza Park or taking a leisurely ride on the Alpine Coaster.

11. Go on a Bus Tour Around Salt Lake Valley

Bus Tour Around Salt Lake Valley

Looking for a fun and unique way to explore the city life of Salt Lake City? Take a bus tour around the picturesque Salt Lake Valley.

This is the perfect opportunity to check out some of the city’s most iconic and beautiful places, including the Discovery Gateway Children's Museum and Liberty Park, all from the comfort of your own seat.

The two-hour guided tour offers amazing views and stories about the history of Salt Lake Valley. You will be able to learn how this charming city came to be while soaking up its incredible sights.

12. Marvel Over the Bonneville Salt Flats

Bonneville Salt Flats

The Bonneville Salt Flats are a marvel of nature located just on the city limits of Salt Lake City, Utah. Many visitors come to the salt flats each year to enjoy the unique landscape and take part in some fun activities.

From racing cars on the flat terrain, to simply walking around and taking in the Bonneville Salt Flats, you'll find some fun things to do here. The salty expanse is an incredible sight to behold.

For those who love adventure and want an exciting experience, visiting this natural wonder of Salt Lake City is definitely worth a trip.

13. Shop, Eat, and Stay at City Creek Center

City Creek Center

Welcome to City Creek Center, the premier shopping and dining destination in Salt Lake City.

Located in the heart of downtown Salt Lake City, this vibrant center is home to an array of Salt Lake City attractions such as popular stores and restaurants, as well as plenty of entertainment options for visitors.

Whether you’re looking for a place to shop ‘til you drop at a gift shop or a great spot for dinner and drinks with friends, City Creek Center in Salt Lake City has something for everyone.

14. Relive the Past at the Pioneer Memorial Museum

Pioneer Memorial Museum

The Pioneer Memorial Museum in Salt Lake City is a hidden gem for locals and tourists alike. Visitors can take a walk back in time to two centuries ago and explore the lives of the early settlers in Utah.

This unique museum offers interactive exhibits, displays, and artifacts that help visitors connect with the past.

The Pioneer Memorial Museum in Salt Lake City features an impressive collection of objects, including guns, tools, furniture, clothing, and books from the 1840s-1890s. It even houses a replica of an 1850s immigrant wagon train camp.

Educational programs and activities are available to further engage children ages 5-17 such as making candles or churning butter just like the pioneers did.

15. Go to an Event at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building

Joseph Smith Memorial Building

Another thing to add to your list of fun things to do in Salt Lake City is to go to the Joseph Smith Memorial Building. This historic building has been standing since 1911, and it offers an array of events that are perfect for anyone looking for something different.

Joseph Smith was the founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church), also known as the Mormon Church.

In 1820, Joseph Smith reported having a vision of God the Father and Jesus Christ, which led him to establish the Latter-day Saints Church in 1830 in Salt Lake City.

Today the building functions as a place to host events and is one of the many Salt Lake City attractions.

16. See the Unique Structures at Gilgal Sculpture Garden

Gilgal Sculpture Garden

One of the most exciting things to do in Salt Lake City is going to the Gilgal Sculpture Garden. This garden is full of unusual and creative sculptures that truly capture the imagination.

The Gilgal Sculpture Garden was created by Thomas Child, a Mormon Bishop who resided in Salt Lake City in 1945.

It includes 12 original sculptures made from brick and each sculpture contains writings or symbols taken from the Bible, local folklore, and ancient scriptures creating a connection between art and faith.

17. Go Skiing or Zip-Lining at Utah Olympic Park

Utah Olympic Park

The Utah Olympic Park in Salt Lake City is the perfect place for you and your family to have a day full of adventure. It has skiing, snowboarding, and zip-lining.

Whether you are an experienced skier or just starting out, the Olympic Park in Salt Lake City has trails to suit all ages and abilities. The zip line tour is one of the park’s most popular attractions as you can soar high over scenic landscapes as you take in breathtaking views of the Wasatch Mountain Range of Salt Lake City.

No matter what activity you choose at Utah Olympic Park, it will be one of the most unforgettable things you do in Salt Lake City.

18. Browse Around the Utah Museum of Fine Arts

Utah Museum of Fine Arts

The Utah Museum of Fine Arts located in Salt Lake City offers a unique and immersive experience for art aficionados from around the world.

A visit to this museum not only provides visitors with an opportunity to see some incredible works of art but also allows them to take in the beauty of the city and its surroundings.

Located just minutes from downtown Salt Lake City, the Utah Museum of Fine Arts has something for everyone. Visitors can explore a variety of permanent and temporary exhibits that showcase both local and international works as well as interactive activities designed to engage children and adults alike.

19. Climb the Big Cottonwood Canyon

Big Cottonwood Canyon

Climbing the Big Cottonwood Canyon is a must-do activity for any outdoor enthusiast visiting Salt Lake City.

Located just 15 miles from downtown Salt Lake City, the canyon offers breathtaking views of Salt Lake City, plenty of outdoor activities, and a glimpse into Utah's stunning natural history.

The 13-mile-long canyon provides a unique opportunity to explore all of Utah's diverse ecosystems in one day. From dense aspen forests to lush meadows and craggy ridgelines, the Big Cottonwood Canyon never fails to impress visitors with its beauty and diversity.

20. Observe the Butterflies at the Conservatory at Thanksgiving Point

Butterflies at the Conservatory at Thanksgiving Point

Thanksgiving Point in Salt Lake City is perfect for anyone looking to observe the beauty of nature.

The Conservatory at Thanksgiving Point is one of the main attractions, and it’s especially enjoyable during this time of year. You can take in the fragrant blooms in Salt Lake City while observing colorful butterflies flitting from flower to flower.

The Conservatory houses hundreds of different species of butterflies, making it an ideal place to visit if you’re looking for an educational outing or just a peaceful escape from everyday life while visiting Salt Lake City.

21. Visit Utah's Hogle Zoo

Utah's Hogle Zoo

If you are looking for fun things to do in Salt Lake City, look no further than Hogle Zoo. Utah's Hogle Zoo is one of the best places in Salt Lake City for a family-friendly outing. From fascinating animals to educational attractions and experiences, you are guaranteed to have so much fun.

It’s also a great place that hosts birthday parties and special events. You'll get up close and personal with exotic animals from all over the world, such as gorillas, tigers, elephants, and polar bears.

22. Trace Your Ancestry at the Family History Library

Family History Library

The Family History Library in Salt Lake City is a great place to trace your ancestry and learn more about your family history. Located in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints headquarters, this library holds an extensive collection of records from around the world.

It offers free access to a variety of resources designed to help people explore their ancestry and find out more about their past.

At the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, you can search through over 2 million rolls of microfilm containing original documents such as birth, marriage, and death records as well as census information. If you're interested in your family's history, make sure to add this to your list of things to do in Salt Lake City.

23. Admire the View From the Top of Ensign Peak

View From the Top of Ensign Peak

Ensign Peak in Salt Lake City offers stunning views of Salt Lake City below and the majestic Wasatch Mountains that surround it.

Located just north of downtown in Ensign Peak Nature Park, this historical site marks the spot where Brigham Young and his followers first looked out upon their new home after arriving in 1847.

The Ensign Peak Trail is short but steep, as it rises some 400 feet above downtown Salt Lake City. However, the effort is well worth it when you reach the summit and take in its sweeping views.

24. Go Bird Watching

Bird Watching

Bird watching is a great way to get outside, explore nature, and appreciate the beauty of our feathered friends. Salt Lake City offers an abundance of opportunities in its great outdoors.

For those looking for a birding adventure close to home, Salt Lake City has plenty of spectacular spots right in its backyard to see various bird species. From the Great Salt Lake to Red Butte Garden and Liberty Park, you can observe some of the most beautiful birds in all their glory.

25. Catch a Basketball Game

 Vivint Smart Home Arena

If you're a basketball fan in Salt Lake City, Utah, you have to check out a Utah Jazz game while you're in town. The team has been a fixture of Salt Lake City for decades, and their electric home games are always exciting.

The Utah Jazz play many of their games at Vivint Smart Home Arena in downtown Salt Lake City, so it's easy to get to even if you live outside of Salt Lake City. You can buy tickets online without any hassle. Make sure to stop by the gift shop before the game for a few souvenirs.

FAQs About Things to Do in Salt Lake City

Let's look at some frequently asked questions about things to do in Salt Lake City.

Can non-Mormons go to Temple Square?

Yes, non-Mormons are welcome to visit Temple Square, which is located in Salt Lake City, Utah, and is the headquarters of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). Non-Mormon visitors are welcome to take a guided tour of Temple Square in Salt Lake City and its facilities, including the Salt Lake Temple, the LDS Conference Center, and the Tabernacle.

Is there a dress code for Temple Square?

When visiting Temple Square in Salt Lake City, it is recommended to dress modestly and respectfully. It's important to remember that Temple Square is a place of worship and reverence for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, so visitors are encouraged to be mindful of their behavior and actions while on the grounds of Temple Square.

Summing up: Best Things to Do in Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City is a great place to explore and experience something new, which is why it's such a popular tourist destination.

From the unique museums, outdoor activities, and local attractions, you'll find many fun things to do in Salt Lake City.

Whether you’re looking to enjoy some peace and quiet or indulge in some of the best food in the area, Salt Lake City won't disappoint.

So pack your bags and get exploring the lovely Salt Lake City.