Things to do in Utah in Winter | 19 Best Winter Activities in Utah

There are many things to do in Utah in Winter snow is falling and the summer lake has frozen over. Now you’re probably wondering what is there to do in Utah during the winter season.

The great news is there’s an entire list of options regardless of whether you’re local or a holiday goer. 

Winter landscape in Park City, Utah, USA.

Are you an indoor person or an outdoor person? Personally, I think that a little bit of both goes a long way. If movies and bowling are too old fashioned for you, why not try out some snow castles or ice skating?

There is never a shortage of things to do in Utah, especially in the winter. So, pack away your shorts and dresses, put on your snow boots and get ready for the most epic list of the best winter activities in Utah!

Horse-drawn Sleigh Rides

Things to do in Utah in winter - Horse trail sign post for horse sleigh rides.

Since red-nosed reindeers don’t exist, the next best thing is naturally a horse-drawn sleigh ride which is one of the many out-of-this-world things to do in Utah this winter. Live life in the day of a modern-day Santa Claus and sleigh through the snow while taking in the spectacular views of Deer Valley Resort.

To add to the experience, some of the tours that you can book include a complimentary dinner, so you won’t have to worry about slaving away in the kitchen after an adrenaline-pumping day. Horses, scenery, sleigh bells and scrumptious meals. It most certainly is the most wonderful time of the year!

Crystal Hot Springs – Things To Do In Utah In Winter

Things to do in Utah in winter - woman enjoying natural hot springs in Utah

Take a dip in nature’s jacuzzi and soak those shivers away, this winter! Some of us simply can’t let get enough of swimming in the summer. So, if winter is getting in the way of your watery fun, don’t miss out on this steaming “winter pool.”

Are you looking for a kid-friendly activity for the whole family to enjoy? Well, the Crystal Hot Springs don’t only have jacuzzis and sizzling hot springs for the adults, but they also offer two waterslides for your little ones to have a splashing time on. Yes, even summer activities are on the list of things to do in Utah in winter!

Nothing works up an appetite quite like a relaxing day in a jacuzzi. In my case, a day that includes this much relaxation makes me downright lazy to cook. Thankfully, J C’s Country Diner can take care of those rumbling tummies with their juicy burgers, crispy chicken and spicy Mexican cuisine. J.C’s? Yes, please!

Ice fishing

Things to do in Utah in Winter - man fishing in the winter with a successful catch

If you’re still wondering what to do in Utah in the ice and snow, be sure to add some ice fishing to your list! Utah has a variety of location options for your fishing expedition including East Canyon State Park and Rockport State Park that offers spectacular mountain views and the possibility of catching your own mouth-watering dinner.

You can also book an ice-fishing tour and bring your family along on your adventure at Utah Ice Fishing. So, if you are a beginner who is looking to test the icy waters before buying your own fishing gear, you can rent your fishing equipment for the day. You might need to return the rods after your trip, but, thankfully, you can keep whatever you catch!

If you weren’t lucky enough to catch a bite, go grab a bite at Takashi Japanese restaurant to get the delicious seafood that you worked so hard for during the day. You can choose between a variety of sushi options or other authentic, Japanese cuisine. If you can’t teach a man to fish, give the man some sushi!

Trampoline Park – Things To Do In Utah In Winter

Things to do in Utah in winter - trampoline park

What is the best way to warm yourself up this winter (other than soaking in a hot spring?) Jumping the cold away! This is probably the best option on our list if you are looking for child-friendly things to do in Salt Lake City. Also, what better way is there to wear out that winter hot chocolate, sugar rush than bouncing the energy away?

So where can you find this fun-filled, energetic activity for your kids? Well, according to reviews you can get warm, get fit and get bouncing at Get Air Trampoline Park in Salt Lake City. If you are looking for a family-friendly place to curb your appetite, be sure to stop by Loco Lizard Cantina for some delicious Mexican style tacos, nachos and juicy burgers!

Mesa Arch

Sunrise on Mesa Arch Canyonlands National Park, Utah

Don’t let the snow get in your way of keeping fit! Pack your snow boots and warm coats and head over to Mesa Arch which is one of the most beautiful Utah Attractions that you simply cannot afford to miss this winter.

The Mesa Arch trail is perfect for hikers of all skill levels and is only 0.7 miles long. Personally, I have found that winter is also the best time to go hiking since you can increase your body temperature and get rid of the shivers without breaking a sweat.

The trail takes not only gives you a great way to get your summer body ready during winter but also offers jaw-dropping scenery including the famous Mesa rock arch and spectacular canyon views! So, if you sleighing through the snow isn’t your cup of tea, try hiking through the snow at Mesa Arch!

Stomach rumbling? Why not indulge yourself in some mouthwatering Italian cuisine at Cafe & Lounge Italiano? Choose between hand-made pasta, pizza or some tasty grilled chicken and tantalizing starters to curb your appetite and end your day with 100% satisfaction.

Hogle Zoo – Things To Do In Utah In Winter

Jaguar resting at Hogle Zoo

Here’s another great choice for those who are looking for family-friendly things to do in Utah in winter. The Hogle Zoo is one of Utah’s most popular zoos and offers a variety of activities for kids, parents and animal lovers to enjoy.

For starters, the zoo is home to a diverse range of animal species including, but not limited to, lions, apes, elephants and zebras. It also allows you to get close to some of the animals with its petting program and offers captivating feeding programs that you can view.

If you’d like to get more in touch with the animals, you can sign up for a volunteer program, or sign your kids up for one of the zoo’s animal education programs. PS: Don’t forget to stop by the Hogle Zoo gift shop to stock up on souvenirs.

You can never go wrong with some greasy, cheesy and meaty pizza, especially if you’re enjoying the winter with your kids. So, be sure to stop by Settebello Pizzeria Napoletana for some of the tastiest pizzas that you can ensure that your zoo expedition is one that your family will never forget!


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Bryce Canyon Winter Festival

Bryce Canyon National Park View

Since it is the festive season, it is safe to assume that there will be some festivals on the list of things to do in Utah. One of the best festivals to attend includes the Bryce Canyon Winter Festival that offers a diverse range of activities for every preference.

If the kayak demos and wildlife classes aren’t exciting enough for you, you can try out some leather journal making classes, water painting, cookie decorating and photo workshops.

They also offer creative crafts for the kids as well as dance and yoga classes for the fitness junkies out there. Celebrate in style this winter and head over to the Bryce Canyon Winter Festival!

Snow Tubing

Fun snowtubing on the snow

Not all of us have the balance, skill or stamina to brave the icy hills on skis. So, if you are looking for a way to slide through the snow with ease, be sure to try out some snow tubing at Woodward Park City.

If you’re not up for getting your hands dirty, you watch the snow tubers from a birds-eye view on one of the park’s ski lifts. The options are endless.

If you are looking for things to do in park city, Utah in winter that is suitable for all age levels, Woodward Park City, offers some adrenaline-pumping snow ramps that you can slide down with rental tubes that are offered at budget-friendly prices. 

My fellow carnivores may agree that nothing is as satisfying as a thick, juicy piece of steak after an adrenaline-pumping, outdoor adventure. If you do agree, don’t miss out on Firewood’s mouthwatering steak dishes, unless you are more of a seafood person in which case they have plenty of that too. 

Sundance Film Festival – Things To Do In Utah In Winter

View from stage at theatre

If a Raindance brings rain in the dry season, how do you get rid of boredom in the snowy season? A Sundance of course!

Don’t worry, you won’t have to do any actual dancing, but you can always stop by the Sundance Film Festival for a relaxing night full of film and theatre acts that are bound to blow your boredom away.

The festival was set up as a non-profit organization to connect performers and audience members and to give upcoming stars a chance at their 15 minutes of fame. They display the films on gigantic screens, so don’t forget to wear comfortable clothes and to get your popcorn ready. Netflix hasn’t got anything on this performance spectacle!

Indoor rock climbing

Man climbing high at indoor rock climbing center

Get some momentum going this winter at Momentum Rock climbing gym which is another excellent choice for families who are looking for child-friendly things to do in Utah in winter.

This training centre caters for aspiring climbers of all ages, but you will need to book in advance, so be sure to plan your trip accordingly.

As we all know, keeping fit and healthy is vital to our kids’ health, especially when the cold makes it so easy to stay under the blankets for the whole day. So, why not get the best of both worlds in terms of having fun and staying healthy? 

Pies and Pizzas? Yes, please! Don’t forget to make a food stop at The Pie Pizzeria for some of Salt Lake City’s top-rated pies.


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Midway Ice Castles – Things To Do In Utah In Winter

Things to do in Utah in Winter - visit Midway Ice Castles in Utah

Live a day in the life of a king or queen and bring your little princes and princesses to the Midway Ice Castles for a true winter fairytale experience.

This is one of my favorite things to do in Utah in Winter and (for obvious reasons) you can only do this in winter. So, if you are a tourist, be sure not to miss out on this once in a lifetime experience.

Daytime is the best time to explore the castle’s icy walls and intricately designed tunnels since the sun’s rays pierce the ice, giving it that movie-style, blue glow.

If your 30-26 minute walk through the castle leaves you begging for more (which it will), don’t forget to try out the ice slides for the full winter package. Winter in Utah keeps getting better!

Diversity is exciting, especially in the eyes of children. Now, that you have experienced a day in the life of royalty, why not switch over to mid-winter beach vibes at L&L Hawaiian Barbecue?

This spectacular, child-friendly restaurant offers Hawaiian, beach-style cuisine and the restaurant is island-themed which will give your family two epic themed adventures in one day.

Snowmobiling

Things to do in Utah in winter - snowmobiling.

This one is for the adults who want to experience what it feels like to be young again. Let your inner child run free with an epic day of snowmobiling in Utah! 

There are a variety of places around Utah that offer this adventure and each of them has spectacular scenery and breathtaking mountain views. 

Don’t worry, you don’t have to own a snowmobile to take part in this mind-blowing activity. You can rent a snowmobile for the day and race through the trails, especially if you’re not much of a hiker.

If riding through the mountain landscapes didn’t curb your appetite for adventure, book your spot at The Tree Room where you can curb your stomach’s appetite while taking in more of the beautiful mountain views.

The Tree room offers a variety of luxury dishes that are probably more suitable for adults. Just don’t forget to reserve your table in advance!


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Horseback Riding – Things To Do In Utah In Winter

Things to do in Utah in Winter - Horseback riding.

Utah has no shortage of magical adventures to indulge in during the snowy season. One of these fairytale-like, winter activities In Utah includes horseback riding through the snow like a Cowboy Claus! 

There also isn’t much preparation that is needed. If you go to Rocky Mountain Outfitters, you can book a preplanned, guided tour and ride through the mountains while taking in the beauty that winter has to offer.

Horseback riding is as romantic as it gets. So, why not take the romance one step further with an exquisite fine dining experience at The Corner Restaurant?

They work on a booking system, so be sure to reserve your table in advance. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly option, you can always try out Lola’s Street Kitchen for some amazing street food!

Ferris Wheels

 

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If you’re looking for an outdoor adventure without having to freeze in the icy temperatures, head over to Sheels and take a ride on their indoor Ferris wheel. Yes, you read that correctly. When the weather is too cold for an outdoor amusement park, Utah brings the fun indoors so that nothing can stand in the way of your jollification.

The Ferris wheel is a whopping 65-feet in length and has been placed in the middle of one of Utah’s most renowned adventure zones that offers indoor animal exhibits. So there is plenty of fun to be had after your ride too.

Feeling peckish? The Texan Roadhouse is within walking distance from the Ferris wheel and offers crayons and coloring activities for your kids to enjoy while they wait for their delicious meal.

Otherwise, you can dig into some authentic Chinese cuisine at Panda Express or stick to the classics at Chipotle. There is something for everyone’s appetite!

Aquarium – Things To Do In Utah In Winter

View of turtle swimming

If you love indoor activities and sea life then you’re going to love the Loveland Living Aquarium. Go ahead and stroll through the colorful aquarium and take in the beauty of their diverse range of fish, some of which you probably didn’t know existed. 

If you would like to take your expedition to the next level, you can try out their stingray or penguin encounters to get up close with the animals. As a bonus, if you are a veteran you and your direct family get free entry into the aquarium. 

After connecting with the sea life at the aquarium, your kids may not be in the mood to eat the friends that they just made. So, rather stop by Sauce Boss Southern Kitchen for what previous patrons described as the best southern fried chicken they have ever had. See you there!


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Bowling and Arcades

When all else fails, bowling and arcade games are still great things to do in Utah in winter. Being a suitable activity for all ages makes this a perfect adventure for families, teens and friends who are too old for merry go rounds and bounce houses. 

All-Star Bowling and Arcade is the place to be if you like bowling in Utah. They offer state of the art bowling arenas, virtual reality simulations and a variety of exciting arcade games for all ages.

To add to the experience, they also have their own in-house restaurant that you can celebrate your team’s win at.

Planetarium – Things To Do In Utah In Winter

If you’re looking to learn something valuable on your day out, why not try the Clark Planetarium in Salt Lake City for a perfectly balanced, exciting and educational day of indoor winter fun? 

Educate yourself on Earth and space with the Planetarium’s attention-gripping movies and visual displays or explore the kid-friendly spaceship for a truly astronomical adventure.

You can also engage with the interactive space exhibits which makes this one of the most unique, child-friendly things to do in Salt Lake City. Winter in Utah is out of this world!

You best believe that a restaurant is worth your while when they release a second edition in the same city. Be sure to stop by Red Iguana 2 for some authentic Mexican cuisine in an epic-themed restaurant that kids and adults can enjoy!

Ice skating

Things to do in Utah in Winter - Ice-skating

It’s wintertime! So pack away those rollerskates and put on your ice skates to take advantage of all of the benefits that the snowy weather has to offer.

If you’re looking for a convenient place to glide through this winter, be sure to stop by the Gallivan Center Ice Rink that offers a spectacular outdoor ice rink for figure skating, ice skating and ice hockey.

Since the mall is located right outside of the Gallivan Center, you also have access to a variety of restaurants to curb your after-skate appetite or coffee shops where you can buy a steaming cup of cocoa, to warm up those tummies. Look out summer! Winter in Utah is coming.

Hot Air Balloons – Things To Do In Utah In Winter

Hot air balloon in the Wasatch Front, Utah

Just in case the items on our list isn’t adventurous enough for you, I saved the best adventure for last. If you are looking to escape the ground, or if you want to spectate the items on this list from a birds-eye view before deciding on one, Skywalkers Hot Air Ballooning is the way to go!

Take in the jaw-dropping mountain views on a romantic date, or bring your family for a once in a lifetime experience that they’ll never forget. Just remember to plan your trip in advance. The balloon rides are available all year round, but you might want to avoid stormy weather and book your ride before arriving.

Conclusion

So, what are some of the best things to do in Utah in winter? It’s hard to narrow it down, really. Utah is a winter wonderland when it comes to exciting winter activities.

If you are looking for an outdoor adventure, you can try out some snow tubing, visit the ice castles, or even go horseback riding. On the other hand if you’re more of an indoor person, the aquarium, planetarium, bounce house or indoor Ferris wheel is the way to go.

However if the diverse range of activities isn’t enough to add Utah to your holiday list, the variety of cultural dining options is bound to seal the deal. Utah is most certainly a win-win for winter.

Heading to Missouri? Check out this mind-blowing list of things to do in Joplin, MO!